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Get Ready….Get Set…Go Back to School

By · 9/22/2011

Whether you’ve already started the school year, or start soon, there are many
ways to create a smooth transition from summer to fall by getting a few things
organized. Do you want to save time, delete the clutter, and create a calm
environment and a happy family?  Let’s do it!

  1. Implement routines.  I can’t emphasize this one enough!!  Routines and
    consistency save lives.  Well….mine anyway.  Kids thrive on routines – it gives
    them a safety net because they know what to expect.  It creates a level of
    comfort which reduces stress and builds self confidence.
  2. For younger kids, make bedtime the same each night and whatever your
    routine….shower, teeth, bed-time story….stick to it.  There will always be the
    occasional shift when something special comes up, but that is normal and
    teaches flexibility.  [2]Check out my Good Choices Charts!  They are a great
    way to help your kids learn the valuable life skills of sticking to routines,
    and being responsible for chores.
    For older kids, make homework time the same each night, teach your kids to
    rest and take breaks – they need breathers between activities.  Set a time for
    lights out and cell phones off.  Kids today are over stimulated and often sleep
    deprived – 8 hours is optimal for all of us.
  3. Create a homework/craft storage area.  Save time!  When shopping for back to
    school supplies, don’t forget to buy a few extras while everything is on sale,
    and create a well-stocked homework caddy.  This will make life so much simpler
    for you and your kids.  I suggest using a spinning caddy, soup cans with
    magnets, or portable stacking drawers.  You want things that can be moved and
    stored easily.
  4. Stock up on pencils, markers, crayons, glue sticks, lined paper, and craft
    paper.  Include scissors, ruler, calculator, dictionary, and a pencil
  5. De-clutter the bedrooms.  I can’t tell you how good my kids feel when their
    rooms are clean and organized.  They are in control and so much less stressed
    – teaching this life skill is one of the best gifts you can give your kids!
  6. Go through the toys and books and do a little purging.  If they have
    outgrown the books, donate them to your school or local daycare.  Give the toys
    to some younger family members or kids in the neighborhood, or take everything
    to your favorite local charity.
  7. Try on clothes.  Give away what doesn’t fit.  Make a list of items that
    your child needs (school clothes, accessories, sports items, clothing for
    special activities like concerts, etc.)  Plan a shopping day and check off your
    list.  If possible, I suggest taking one kid at a time.  It might save more
    time in the end, and maybe your sanity.
  8. Create a communication zone.  With so many activities, making sure everyone is
    on the same page can be difficult.  I suggest having one are in the house to
    post a family calendar, drop off important school papers, and post notes for
  9. Use a large bulletin board and add 3M hooks for hanging school papers with
    a binder clip.  I like to have one hook for each child or family member.
  10. Stick a small white board to the bulletin board for messages.
  11. Make sure your older children are writing their appointments and schedules
    on the family calendar.  It will make planning family events easier if you know
    what everyone is doing.
  12. Don’t forget to schedule hair cuts, physicals, and get signed up for fall
    sports and other activities.

Take Action!!  Pick one thing you are going to get done today and stick to it
until it is completed.  If you have questions or want to send me one of your
favorite back to school tips, please do, and I will post it on my blog.  Have a
great school year!!


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