We're back to school! Now what?

We’re no longer heading back to school.

We’re back. 

We’re in the thick of the school year now — whether that’s preschool, elementary, middle or high school — and we’re dealing with all the challenges that come with that.

We’re back to homework, behavior issues, time-out chairs, test stress, bullying and everything else that comes about when you throw hundreds of kids into a single building and try to get them to grow into well-educated, kind, safe, clear-thinking humans. Even if you’re homeschooling, you’re likely facing challenges in education.

Though we, as a magazine, can scarcely scratch the surface of everything parents need to know about school and learning, we’ve giving it a pretty good shot with this edition, our annual Education Issue (Issuu).

Check out our stories on Twin Cities immersion-education programs and college preparation: Did you know you can and should start getting ready in middle school?

My favorite story in this issue is about theater-going for kids. One local mom tells the story of taking her daughter to live-theater performances, starting at age 1.

What she and her husband have discovered surprised me: Theater has encouraged her daughter, now 3, to read. 

“Our daughter’s adoration of books has absolutely soared. I can’t help but be overjoyed at the genuine excitement Ella radiates whenever we present her with a new book she knows we’ll be seeing in the theater,” she said. 

How cool! 

In this issue, we’re also touching on the very serious issue of bullying as part of a new monthly column — called On Behavior (printed edition and digital replica editions only) — written by the folks over at The PACER Center in Bloomington, which created National Bullying Prevention Month, celebrated every October.

Every month moving forward, PACER’s staff will take on a variety of other tough topics, including how to deal with a kid who refuses to go to school, how to find out if your kid has ADHD and how to cope with a disability diagnosis.

On the lighter side of this issue, you’ll also find family-friendly things to do for fall, including oodles of apple orchards to visit (and a tasty recipe to try). 

Fall in Minnesota is gorgeous — so get out there and take a break from the stress of school. Walk in the cool air and crunch a crisp, Minnesota-grown apple. 

Then send one to school for your kid’s teacher.