Ready or not, it’s time for the kids to go back to class. Make the transition from carefree summer to put-together fall with these five back-to-school organization ideas.
Set Up for Success
If only you had a magic wand that got everyone out of bed, fed, dressed, and on their way with nothing but smiles, cooperation, and time to spare. Although , a little planning can go a long way. The night before a school day, pack lunches, lay out clothes, and organize backpacks. That way, come morning, you and the kids can concentrate on the tasks at hand. Try using timers to alert kids to when they should be dressed, done with breakfast, and have their teeth brushed. Create checklists to keep them focused on what they need to do before the bus arrives.
Build a “Motherboard”
Designate an area — the mud room, a corner of your office, a desk in the kitchen — as Organization Central. Use a large wall calendar to track events and to-dos by date. Label bins for each family member’s paperwork. Teach kids to empty their backpacks and folders only here. Fill out forms and sign things like permission slips and report cards on the spot. Transfer dates and reminders to the calendar on the spot.
Create a Homework Station
Make getting down to the business of homework easy by creating a space that has everything your student needs: laptop or desktop, sharpened pencils, highlighters, a stapler, etc. Stock up on supplies like construction paper, poster board, and glue sticks to avoid trips to the store for last-minute projects.
If your kids have been living in swimsuits, shorts, and T-shirts, now is a good time to take stock of closets to determine what still fits, what can be thrown out, and what needs to be donated or passed to a younger sibling or cousin. Make a list of what your child needs, so shopping is streamlined.
Involve the Kids
Let your children choose their school supplies, help set up a study area, decorate their organization bins, help make lunches, and chose outfits for the week. They’ll be more likely to keep routines in place if they have a hand in their creation.