Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Starting school well

Image result for images of children learningWelcome back to the new academic year! It feels wonderful to be back, Bradbury has such a special feeling about it that just makes you happy to be here!

It has been a smooth start and it seems as though everyone has settled in well. It is now Week Six and I see a few tired faces around as the reality of the school day routine really gets established. Ensuring that your child is getting enough sleep is one of the most important things that you can do as a parent to support their learning. It means that they are alert; able to process new information and take on board new concepts and ideas more easily. If they don't get enough sleep, children can have difficulty in focusing their attention to specific tasks, can be irritable, have difficulty managing their emotions and become easily frustrated.
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What is enough sleep? It has been suggested that children aged 3-6 years old need 10-12 hours sleep per day. This means that children of this age will go to sleep typically between 7 and 9 pm and wake around 6-8 am. Children aged between 7-12 years need around 10-11 hours per day. At this age, because of social, school and family activities,  bedtimes do gradually get later and later, with most 12 year old children going to bed around 9 pm.

Image result for images of children sleeping

We really notice the difference between children who are well rested and those that are not. We know that little bodies need repair, time to rest and time to heal. This is what happens when we sleep. So brains, heart and muscles are better equipped to cope with the rigors of school when they are well rested. The brain stores memories from the day so that they can be recalled later. This is a key part of learning. We can see that children who are well rested are better at paying attention to their learning, can recall facts quicker and are generally more alert and emotionally resilient than those who do not.

So, a good way to support your child's learning is for them to have a regular bedtime routine that allows them plenty of sleep. I suggest that you stick to a routine, even on weekends. Introduce a quiet wind down activity- reading a story is a great one. Ensure the bedroom is dark, cool, quiet and that it is screen free.

Lets try to ensure that Bradbury students are well rested students so that they can be even better learners!