Image from Neat Little Nest
Congratulations parents, you survived the summer! In order to begin that smooth transition from summer back to school, you will need to be organized. Here are a few tips to help you start the new school year off on the right foot.
1. Create a morning routine
Kids thrive on routines. As a former teacher, I know that consistency is key. When your child knows the expectations, they can become more independent. Create a list of what needs to be done each morning and post it in your child’s bedroom or bathroom. I’m talking adding the simplest of tasks such as: get dressed, comb hair, brush teeth etc. Do not assume your child knows what they are supposed to do each morning. Have a conversation with your child about what needs to be done to get ready in the morning and have them make a checklist. Use pictures for kiddos who are too young to read.
2. Create an afternoon/evening routine
Just like with the morning routine, create a visual schedule for what is expected when coming home from school. Is it homework first, then play time? Or do you want your child to have down time before hitting the books? Whatever you decide, display it so your child knows the expectations for what to do after school. Continue that schedule to include dinner, bath, and conclude the day with a set bedtime. Want to print out a cute and creative list? Check out websites like Etsy and Teachers Pay Teachers for tons of printable, editable, routine checklists for kids.
3. Have a plan for incoming papers
Prepare yourself for information overload! You know the papers will be flowing in from your child’s school. Whether it’s communication from your child’s teacher or their homework and art projects, you need to be ready to slay that paperwork! Create an area to handle that flowing paper daily. Post important memos on the fridge or on a cork board, mark important dates on the calendar immediately, and get a file box for any school work you want to keep as mementos.
4. Designate a place for backpacks and lunchboxes
No mudroom? No problem! A simple hook or basket near the door can save so much time on those rushed school mornings. Make packing their backpack and lunches part of the evening routine to ensure a smooth morning.
5. Create a laundry schedule and designate a place for school clothes and accessories
If your child wears a uniform, this is pretty easy. Have their uniform clothes, belts, and school approved shoes and socks together for easy dressing in the morning. Create a laundry schedule to ensure a fresh clean outfit everyday. If your child doesn’t wear uniforms, take some time on Sunday to decide on outfits for the week and have them laid out to save time in the morning.
6. Create a family calendar
Whether its a paper calendar, dry erase board, or Google calendar, make sure the family has a shared place to write down all of those important plays, conferences, and practices. This helps keep everyone on the same page and prevents over-scheduling.
I hope these tips will help get you and your family organized for a successful school year!