If you’ve already headed back to school, you can likely disregard this post until next year! However, our family is still a week out from our start date, and I am sure there are a few others who still have kiddos at home, so I wanted to share some of my yearly tips that keep me sane.
Back to School Tips
Shifting from a busy and non-structured routine of summer days is a little tricky, but with some planning, you can make things a bit smoother.
Alter Your Sleep Pattern
A week before school begins, start going to bed and waking up (you and the kids) earlier. It helps make the transition easier for everyone. We start school next week, so last week we began slowing altering bedtime by 30 minutes every few days, until we got back to the school-year bedtime.
This is also the routine with wake-up times, slowly shifting the rise and shine time for everyone. In our house, especially this year, we’ve had some VERY lazy mornings, so this was has been actually the most difficult to transition.
Clean and Tidy Closets
This was my favorite back when growing up and heading back to school. My mom and I would school shop for new clothes, and even though most of my clothes came from bargain stores and Sears, I was still excited. I can remember picking out my first day of school outfit weeks ahead of time.
Take some time to go through the closet and find items that have been outgrown, doesn’t fit for school attire and simple needs to go. Then organize drawers to make outfits easy to put together for your child. Depending on their age, you can even use boxes to plan outfits for an entire week – or a hangar system for this and use this perfectly sized closet organizer. Isn’t it perfect for organizing all week?
Create an After School Routine
This is one of the most important steps as we head back to school. I love to create independence in my child and one way to do that is create tools which they can use to help keep themselves on track. Now, each child is different for sure, and after having four I can tell you that they each require a bit of different training. But one thing that is helpful for all fo them is a chart which gives them tasks to check off after they’ve completed them. We use one for before school, but also after school, and bedtime.
My desire for our after school chart is to allow my child to really be independent on knowing what his tasks are and finding success in completing them on his own, with out me hovering over him. I have printable task sheets and tasks ideas in my Back To School Survival Guide, if you are looking for more ideas.
Plan Lunch Ideas Ahead
Do all moms really dread packing lunches, or is it just me? One thing I have done, which has helped, is to sit down with my son and come up with a list of lunch items that he would like to see in his lunch. We expand on this list, so that there are items from all food groups, and then we can look at what items go together and what he can expect in his lunch.
This way, he has an expectation, I have an expectation and it is much easier to plan. How would I have known otherwise that he liked dill pickles and black olives in his lunch box? I also like to get re-useable lunch box supplies, like this bento lunch box that we have had two years. Its sturdy and has worked so well with the ice packs.
Create a School Calendar
Keeping track of all the school activities, classroom parties, events and such can really be tricky. I like to put this on my iCal calendar so that all our family members can see it. However, we have also used a printable calendar that comes in my FREE Household Planner and designated school items with a certain color. Having a viewable calendar on the wall seems to really help my eight year old, so this type of wall calendar is what he likes.
What Back to School Tips do you have to share with other moms?
If you are looking for tips on keeping everyone healthy and well this upcoming school season, take a look at this awesome Back to School Class I was a part of a few weeks back.
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