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Back To School Tips For Seniors – The Kids Are Going Back!

September 5, 2018

The grandkids are back at school, and as a grandparent perhaps you’re wondering how you can remain a presence in their lives. That’s especially true if you spent a great deal of quality time with them over the summer, and know they will now have so much more on their plates — homework, after-school activities, etc.

The good news is, there are plenty of ways for you to stay in the picture. The better news is, you will likely always be part of it, just by doing what you have always done.

By being a loving, caring grandparent.

A wonderfully named blog called dealt with the current challenge, offering up 10 ways for grandparents to support school-bound children. The list, compiled with input from the school-teacher daughter of the blog’s organizer, Lisa Carpenter, includes everything from buying a lunchbox or backpack to doing the same for a less-fortunate kid. Everything from getting a copy of the school calendar (gotta know when the band concerts and soccer games are, after all) to being apprised of the teacher’s email address, in case you want to reach out about some issue or other.

One of our personal favorites: Volunteering in your grandson or granddaughter’s classroom. What better way to keep tabs on the youngster, while also gaining valuable insight into what his or her day-to-day world is like — who their friends are, what they’re studying, whether lunch is edible, etc.? (The other benefit is, you get to help a teacher out. Busy as they are, they could always use a hand.)

As mentioned, however, you likely forged a deep, everlasting connection with your grandchildren long ago, and in the process taught them things just by being around them. Just by being yourself. You have taught them values and manners. You have taught them family history by flipping through photo albums with them, and your personal history by telling them stories of a time vastly different from the one in which they live.

There are also the more tangible things. By reading with them in their formative years, you helped improve their cognitive and language skills — and most importantly, just taught them (as if by osmosis) a love of books and reading that will inform them literally and inform how they live their lives.

Beyond that, you can teach them about your favorite things — things like gardening and knitting, bird watching and woodworking. By sharing such activities with them, you are in effect sharing yourself, and they will never will never forget it. Not now, not when they are old enough to have grandkids of their own.

It is also important to keep in mind the things you should avoid as a grandparent. As outlined by Amy Goyer for, it is unwise to disregard parental rules, monopolize your grandkids’ time or allow them to monopolize too much of yours — to do something like agree to babysitting duties when you have a prior commitment.

If you have the wherewithal to meet challenges like those, you can likely meet the present one. Yes, you can remain a presence in your grandkids’ lives, just by doing what you have always done.

In fact, you likely always will be.

Categories: General