Returning to school night bedtimes and wake-up times in the weeks before school begins is a good way to ease kids back into the proper rhythm for going back to school. Taking trips to the store to purchase school supplies like notebooks and pens can get the younger ones excited about returning to school because they are getting something, and that something needs school to start to be used. It’s all simple psychology that parents can use to the benefit of their child. After all, don’t we want them to love and to excel in school?During the summer, it is normal to let them go to bed later and sleep later in the mornings. It’s great to allow this relaxing of school year discipline, but there should be a gradual return to this as school approaches so that it’s not a shock to their system when the first day and week of school arrive. A simple 15-20 minute earlier shift in their bedtime over a few weeks before school can accomplish this. It gets them into it without any of the shock or trauma, and it doesn’t have the feeling of a punishment. We already talked about taking them to buy supplies, and they obviously have to be present to try on new school clothes, whether they go to the state school and get to wear individual clothes, or some sort of parochial or private school which usually require a standard uniform or outfit. Clothing should be laid out the night before to avoid morning confusion.Already towards the end of July we are reminded that school is right around the corner and the stores are hoping for us to start planning what we are going to be wearing and buying for that first week of school. Parents of younger children might want to wait until the last minute for clothes because let’s face it, those younger ones are growing by leaps and bounds. It would be terrible to buy things like pants, trousers, or jeans only to have them look like “flood pants” when school starts. This is similar to how we have grown accustomed to Christmas ads as soon as early December. Many people get annoyed by this but marketing means alerting the people to the specials and getting those feet in the door as early as possible.Tough economic times are especially rough during back to school time. It is better to get the supplies that you can earlier on. While certain clothing items may have to wait for later on due to children’s growth spurts, or the latest styles not reaching store or e-tailer inventory until late August, things like book bags, nap sacks, socks, notebooks and pens, can all be purchased early on and stored until school actually starts. If you are lucky enough to have been provided a list of necessary items by the school at the conclusion of the prior term, then it’s a snap to get this stuff early so that it isn’t a financial shock all at once when you have to spend money on clothing, which let’s face it, isn’t cheap.Modern children have no idea how lucky that they are. In the 1800’s and earlier, children didn’t have “fashion” per se, and there was no individuality. Kids wore smaller versions of what their parents wore, mirroring the social class which they were born into. Today a middle class or poor kid might be wearing pretty much what a rich kid is wearing. Maybe the rich kid wants to look “real” and goes for the regular non rich kid look. Fashions go back and forth across the social strata, but in general it isn’t really defined by social status nearly as much as it once was.Today there are complete fashion styles just for kids and teens. There are fashion designers who design for this market segment. An entire part of the advertising industry is also devoted to this. The finishing touch on this market funnel down from producers and advertisers to their young hungry customers are the recent cable channels that are totally devoted to kids and teens. Networks like Nickelodeon and MTV and the others are natural advertising outlets for this merchandise. The magazines were out for a long time, but the channels are relatively recent. Now they have these award shows that mirror the Oscars and other “adult” award shows, complete with red carpet and all of the gossip about which young starlet to be is wearing who’s designer’s work.The ascension of the teen consumer market as a genuine consumer segment has ramifications for fashion students. Every designer knows that fashion itself is somewhat steered by the market, and it responds to local and social class trends. Teen fashion creation is different from adult or mature, ore even from those who are just preparing to enter the workforce. Teen styles welcome experiments and controversy. Some designers prefer to work for this segment since they can be more creative and push the boundaries, unlike their peers who work in the adult and mature fashion world.