As the days get shorter and the month of August begins to wind down, we all know this heralds the waning days of summer. This means we will soon be looking forward to another busy school year with new classes, activity-filled days, after school functions, and many exciting sporting and social events. Setting up some routines and establishing organizing strategies now will help you and your family get off to a great start for the new school year.
Avoid supply surprise! Don’t put off purchasing school supplies and new clothes for too long. You can get some great Back-to-School deals by shopping early. A list of recommended supplies from your child’s school takes the mystery out of what to buy. Knowing what you need before you hit the stores can help ensure you buy just the right amount of everything you need. So get supplied early. You will avoid scrambling for necessities at the last minute and won’t get hit by surprises when the school year starts.
Rise and shine! Start getting accustomed to the earlier school hours a few weeks ahead of time. Have everyone arise at an earlier time to begin adjusting to scheduled school start and mealtimes. Try to get a sense of how long all the morning tasks take to complete. Once school is underway, add in some extra time for your morning routine, more than you think you really need. This provides a cushion for unforeseen circumstances and diminishes the stress that can come from feeling rushed. You can always reclaim that extra time later once your routines become more familiar.
Kids’ corners and cubbies! Set up dedicated landing zones for your kids’ things that make sense for the activities they are involved in. For example, you could set up cubbies or baskets for sports equipment or shelves for musical instrument cases or hooks for coats and backpacks. When kids have their own dedicated storage for keeping their school accessories in order, they will always know where to find things and know where things get put away. You can also create a dedicated homework station for the kids with a paper filing system and bins for supplies.
Do ahead before bed! Get the kids in the habit of completing some morning tasks the night before a school day. You can help them with some tasks and some they can do on their own. You can make sure any reports or permission slips are signed and ready to go, select clothes for the next day, decide what to pack for tomorrow’s lunch, organize backpacks and homework and set the morning breakfast table.
School days can sometimes get hectic and overscheduled. But these simple tips will help you and your family kick off the new year with less stress and a strategy to stay organized while adopting routines that give your family more time together feeling less rushed and more peaceful.