Preparing your teen for high school freshman year.

It’s that time of year again, school will be starting in a few shorts weeks in some states. I’m excited to say that I’m in one of those states that don’t wait until after Labor Day since I have three that will be leaving the nest Monday through Friday until next June!  I hear moms and dads dancing and rejoicing from my desk chair as I type this up.  Yes, we are excited that our little or big bundles of joy are getting out of the house.

Do you know how demanding it is trying to entertain FOUR children all summer long??? That’s a rhetorical question so don’t even bother answering.  With Boy Scout camp, church retreats, visits to the awful public pool and having to share a computer with my children the time has come for them to go away to school and give me some peace and quiet.

How do you prepare your teen to start their freshman year in high school?  Oh, that’s easy.

First, you will have to reassure them that no matter what anyone may tell them that they will not be shoved into lockers or dropped in a trash can by upper classman.   That only happens in bad movies and television series.  Promise. 

Second, you have to spend some of their actual college money for their school supplies.  I really believe the lists get longer and longer after each year.  I can remember actually just showing up at school with a pencil and a notebook of paper.  That’s it.  Now you have this extensive list that includes things like printer paper, post-it notes, baby wipes and band aides.   Add that to a notebook for every class, file dividers, red pens, black pens, blue pens, pencils, folders for each classes, refill paper, markers, colored pencils, ruler and don’t forget the EXPENSIVE CALCULATOR.

Let’s talk about the EXPENSIVE CALCULATOR a bit more.  When I was in school they passed them around for us to use just in class, then we handed them back in on our way out of class.  If you were fortunate to have one at home, LUCKY YOU. If you weren’t, then you were doing it the old fashioned way: COUNTING ON YOUR FINGERS!  Try long division and fractions that way, why don’t ya!

Third, expect to spend the whole day at the mall to find the perfect first day of school outfit!  Yes, the whole day!  You will be buying several new pieces of clothing because it’s a total shame if you wear the same clothes from last year the first couple of weeks of school.  You’ll be buying new shoes, new shorts, new jeans, new tops, new ear-rings and a new purse (if you have a daughter).  Then you will have to patiently wait for your teen to find the perfect backpack to ROCK the new outfit!

You can try to get them a new lunchbox but they see bringing their lunch from home as being uncool. If they do take their lunch please do not include a silly “I wub you” message on the inside of the lunchbox so everyone sees it upon opening because that's a total goob factor in their eyes.  Refrain from those silly notes in backpacks or lunchboxes.  Instead, I recommend you posting your messages on the mirror of the bathroom or the mirror on their dresser.  Just don’t get all weepy when they rip it down when their friends may be coming over for a sleepover or to study after school to toss it in the trash.

I guess this is all I can share about getting your teen ready for their freshman year.  They will be awkward and feel out of place no matter how much you tell them otherwise.  Trust me, in a few weeks they will be acting like they own the place.

*My first article for Alleyoop. They only printed part of my funny musings so I wanted to share the whole post.*