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Resources Centre / Twins Tips Introduction / Twins Tips / Back-to-School Tips for Twins & Multiples
Back-to-School Tips for Twins & Multiples
A new school term is just around the corner and for some of your twins and multiples it's a very special first day and for others it's a case of back to school we go!

Managing the everyday tasks for school can be particularly frantic when there are twins. triplets or multiples in the family. so we've pulled together some handy tips to help you get back into the swing of school days and help your children move from being a pre-schooler to the sometimes scary world of school.& Hopefully, we can also help you to save time,money and even your sanity too!

Shopping for Two!

Shopping for school supplies and clothing is expensive enough. but it can break the bank when you're buying for twins, triplets or more. Parents of singletons can hand down clothes and accessories from one child to the next, but many multiples all need the same size at the same time.

Look for bargains all summer summer sales, outlet shops and even other multiple families are sources for good quality used clothing. The major supermarkets now offer good value everyday school clothes so you can pick them up with your weekly food shopping !

Sales on basic school supplies start in July so think about buying early. Look or "Buy one get one free" items - for once, having doubles can pay off! Consider which items can be shared by your multiples, so you don't buy more than you need. Check discount stores like Poundstretcher or Wilkinsons for the best price on pencils, crayons and notebooks.

Plan what you will need to buy. Many schools provide a suggested list of supplies for each class or year group. If you don't know your children's specific supply needs, you'll have do a little bit of scouting around. Talk to parents with children a year older than yours, and ask about their experience last year.

School Routine

Getting back into a daily school routine can be tough after a relaxing summer. especially if you have twins or other multiples. Start establishing a regular bedtime and wake up time about two weeks before school actually starts.

Restful sleep is important. If your multiples share a room. they may have difficulty settling down at night. The temptation to play is great when their twin is in close proximity! Consider putting them to bed in separate rooms and then returning them to their own beds later in the night.

Review and establish priorities for morning tasks -- getting dressed. eating breakfast. brushing teeth. etc. Once school starts. get a head start& in the morning by doing as much as possible the night before.

Decide on outfits and lay out clothes for each of your multiples. Set out non-perishable breakfast foods like cereals and set the table. Review homework and paperwork and pack school bags. Pack lunches. The more you do the night before. the smoother the send off in the morning.

Keeping school stuff organised will prevent a lot of last minute stress on school days. Consider creating an individual area for each child. Designate a specific place to store his or her school bag. lunchbox. coat. shoes etc. Locating the& areas near an entry door reduces the chance that stuff will get waylaid and misplaced. Some families rely on file organisers or stacking trays to keep track of each child's individual school papers such as homework assignments, school calendar and events, class lists, permission slips, books, uniform orders etc.

Back-to-School Traditions

Heading back to school is an exciting, important time and of course. the first day of Nursery or School is one of the most important. It's a big milestone starting school and also to move into the next year group and it should be commemorated. Consider adopting some special family rituals or traditions to mark the occasion for your multiples. Use the preparatory period before school starts as an opportunity to spend some one-on-one time with each of your multiples.

If at all possible. arrange individual shopping expeditions for each child enlist the help of a spouse, relative or friend if you're short on time. In our family, I intend to take each of my twin daughters on a separate shopping trip that includes purchasing school supplies as well as a special outfit for the first day of school.

The one-on-one time is a wonderful chance to share thoughts about the year ahead and to work through any fears or concerns. Make it a tradition that you and your children will look forward to each year.

Other fun traditions give the new school year a fun and meaningful start. Take a picture before the kids leave for school do it in the same place every year for an instant timeline of their growth. Prepare a special breakfast, or, if time is tight in the morning, celebrate with a special dinner the night before. Read a favourite book together.

For special Starting School Gifts, see our twins school range which has cards, photograph frames and books, all designed to celebrate your twins first day at school - whatever the year!

Before school starts, arrange to speak to your childrens teacher or teachers. It's important that they know that your child is a multiple and that they understand and respect the multiple bond but also that each child is treated as an individual.

If your multiples are in the same class: Give the teacher ample support in telling them apart even if they look nothing alike. If necessary, give them name tags to wear for the first few days. Discourage dressing alike - it makes it easier to distinguish them. Make it a point to speak to the teacher briefly as you drop them off and indicate who is wearing what that day and also how they interact with each other and any impacts this may have on the class or their individual learning needs/experiences.

For older children, remind the teacher that your multiples will sometimes react to each other as siblings. Remind your multiples that they should leave their disputes at home they can be disruptive to the rest of the class.

If your multiples are in separate classes: Make sure teachers are aware that their students have a twin or triplet in another class. Explain the relationship between the children, whether they are anxious about being apart, sometimes competitive, shy without their twin, or protective of each other. Any of these dynamics could potentially have an impact on a child's learning experience, and teachers should be aware and respectful of them.

Finally, be sure that your multiples know their phone number and what to do in an emergency. Arrange for them to meet each other for the trip home and if you / other carer are collecting them, where you will meet them. Make sure they know where to go if no one is there to meet them or if they need assistance.
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