Six Tips for Ease Back into the School Year

Written by: Jenny Rowland

With summer winding down, are you ready for back to school? Here are 6 Tips to Help Your Family Ease Into the New School Year.

Plan and register for after-school activities. Classes and teams fill fast, deadlines are early, you need to figure out what activites are logistically possible. It’s especially important if you have multiple children. 

Research what activities are available, and talk to your child to gauge their interests.  Consider his personality. Go beyond the usual ballet and karate. Maybe learn a new language or nurture their love or art? Determine practice days, times and costs. Plot them them on a mock calendar to get a week-at-a-glance preview of the school year.  Strategize with other moms to choose activities your kids can do together, and coordinate a carpool schedule.

Did you leave time for your kid to be a kid? School takes a lot out of little ones. Make sure to give them a break!   

Get organized – build a command station and a family calendar. Find a single location to corral each family member’s essentials, like permission slips, homework, library books, carpool numbers, and lunch boxes.

Some effective solutions include:

  • Double-coat hooks and a shelf with bins for each child.
  • Cubby holes or lockers.
  • A basket near the door.
  • Your child’s packed backpack hung over his dining chair or on his bedroom door each night.

Calendar options include:

  • An online calendar synched to your smartphone and several computers.
  • A large white board or chalkboard (a wall can easily be painted with chalkboard paint!) that can easily change when plans do, and can be seen by everyone.
  • A traditional day planner with pages or rows for each child, and monthly calendars for planning ahead.

Shop early. Assess your child’s closet to see what’s missing, outgrown and what hand me-downs fit.  Make a list, and in addition to school clothes and shoes, remember these essentials:

  • Backpack, gym bags, dance tote.
  • Lunch box, reusable sandwich bags and containers, and thermoses.  Kids’ bento boxes make it easy to pack healthy, green lunches.
  • School supplies. Some schools allow teachers to post their requirements for you to purchase and directly ship to his classroom.
  • Leotards, soccer cleats, uniforms, swimsuits or any other equipment needed for after-school activities.

Find a sitter. Determine whether you’ll require a daily after-school sitter, a nanny, or a regular sitter to give you a break a couple of afternoons a week.  Check out options like UrbanSitter.com to find available sitters in your area, and view their availability.

Adjust sleep and meal schedules. Make school-time wake-ups a little easier by slowly moving back to an earlier bedtime and earlier wake-up a couple of weeks before school begins. Give your kids breakfast, lunch and dinner at the same time they’ll be eating on their school schedule. 

Get registration documents in order. Avoid last-minute rummaging to find birth certificates, proof of residency documents, and last year’s report cards.  Ask the pediatrician to mail you copies of your child’s vaccination and exam records. Find a home for all the documents—scan digital copies—to keep them safe and readily available.

Looking for a great sitter to help with back to school childcare? Check out UrbanSitter.com for great sitters! Celebrate the end of summer with NPN- get your tickets to our Tues. Aug. 28th Back to School Bash at Chitown Futbol today. 

Posted on July 22, 2012 at 8:55 PM