Back-to-school is a time of refreshing daily routines to provide structure, and capturing students’ curiosities to engage learning, for teachers and parents. Working together, the home and school front can set a growth-producing tone for their charges, the students. That starts on DAY ONE of the fall semester. Many schools hold an assembly on the blacktop for gathering and focusing routines such as reciting the flag salute and a school vision statement or chant. Teachers lead their students back to class to start training them in their class routines and the behaviors that are expected of them. Many teachers balance intake or listening time with activity time, so as not to lose their audience. Making materials accessible and setting up a no-nonsense environment with safe traffic patterns for transition times helps avoid issues down the line. Summer experiences are shared, skills reviewed, new learnings presented, and minds engaged on new projects and understandings. It’s a time of growth and stretching, for students, parents, and teachers, even. Well-balanced programs feature a sense of give-and-take between the stakeholders, chances to reflect and provide feedback at all levels of learning. What a great opportunity for parents and teachers to model good communication for their learners, by being open with their exchanges! The beginning of the school year gives a new chance to start fresh, set better routines, relate openly and with clarity, and tap into the interests of students to foster learning engagement. Think about your memories of your first school days of yesteryear. How you anticipated new learnings, were excited to be back in a routine to snap out of boredom, and enjoyed being back with old friends and making new ones!