Summer is always hard to let go of especially if you live in a place with four seasons, it really doesn't last long enough. When September comes, it's that time again for parents with school aged kids to get back into routine again. As a mom to an eight year old boy going into grade four, I want to make life even easier for my son and myself when adjusting back to school. I'm sure there were many kids who felt some anxiety returning, it's just like adults going back to work after a much needed vacation...it's totally normal and I have to admit I felt it a bit too.
I wanted to share some tips at home that can make life easier when getting ready for school everyday and extra curricular activities for the kids.
Empty Backpacks Everyday.
When kids get home and unwind it's best to empty their backpacks right away and place items in their temporary homes until they get packed again in their bags. You will know if your child has any homework, or forms to fill, if their lunch and snacks have been eaten and of course if anything is missing! You can create a temporary home either in the entry way, mudroom, or the bedroom all depending on the space you have. You can even place a magazine vertical box or rack for your child's papers that need immediate attention in this area you designate as well. You really don't want to find a wet towel or bathing suit in their backpack from the time they went swimming, all wet and stinky!
Create a Snack Station.
When preparing what food to bring to school, get your kids involved in helping out with picking what snacks or lunch they would like to have. Create a snack station and make it easy for your kids to reach items in your pantry or the fridge and get your kids to help you out with packing their daily food. It will be good for kids to get use to preparing things the day before, or in the morning and gain some independence, and overall will make life less hectic everyday. This will allow you to enjoy your mornings having breakfast with your family.
Make Bento Box Lunches and Prepare the Night Before.
Having lunches placed in a bento box that include a variety of healthy and tasty items to eat will make lunch time more enjoyable for your kids, but are also so much easier to prepare and it's a win-win for both parents and kids. There are so many combinations of meals you can do in bento boxes from pasta, wraps, deli meats, cheeses, vegetables and fruits, hummus and dips with crisps (crackers, chips, pretzels) and more. Just simply drop the food items into the box and they look nicely presentable and fun for kids to eat up. Your child will be sure to come home from school with lunch and snacks all eaten (or most of it) and you can feel good that it's always going to be a good meal. If your too tired to prepare the night before, take a day to wash and cut up veggies and fruit in advance and have them in containers ready to place in the bento box. I know some fruits like apples or avocado will brown in advance so leave those fruits for the day of.
Have a Family Calendar App or Print.
It's important to have reminders for everyone when it comes to things that are happening in and outside of school. Keep your schedule and upcoming plans organized so that everyone is aware and prepared for things to come. There's a great calendar app called FamCal:Shared Family Calendar and family members can all be included to share the calendar with upcoming activities, tasks, shopping lists and events. If you are not digital savvy, you can always have a printed calendar in the kitchen where everyone can see what's going on, you just need to be sure to remember to write on it.
Steamline School Supplies and Designate a Homework/ Study/ Reading area.
We all know that in order to do work properly you need to work in a peaceful space that is clutter-free no matter what age. Make sure that your child can do homework or study with no distractions and it's best to avoid doing homework in the living room and in front of a TV. Get your child to either work from a desk in their bedroom, or use the dining table and have school supplies ready to use so that it's easy to get the work started. Have your child choose the school items that spark joy so that they want to work with these tools and then have them show gratitude to what no longer brings them joy and let it go. An area that sparks joy to work in will help your child to focus on what he or she needs to do. The same goes for a good spot for reading, you can either choose the same spot or create a reading nook for that time to practice reading.
Prepare Outfits In Advance.
Have you tried the KonMari Method with your child? I have done this with my son when he was only 6 yrs. old and then he did it again (on his own) a year later when he was 7 yrs. old. Now he has a streamlined wardrobe (and bedroom) with everything that sparks joy and it's easy for him to pick out his own outfits to wear everyday. If your child is still too young to try the method out that's ok, make it easy by having their outfits for the week all prepared on the Sunday before the week starts. You can have the outfits ready in a hanging closet organizer with days of the week labelled on each compartment, then your child doesn't need to even think just get the outfit, put it on and go. Remember if your child likes to pick out what to wear on their own, be sure to let them choose their own outfits to avoid any issues getting ready.
Here's my son and I on the first day of school, he's a big Naruto fan with his leaf village headband. This time he let me pick his outfit for the first day, but he had no issue with what I chose cause everything sparks joy! I usually let him pick out his own outfits everyday.
There you have it, some of my tips to help with life back to school more simple everyday!
This blog is not a sponsored post.