Back to School Survival Tips for Moms

 Before the tide changes and we go from carefree summer days to the scheduled and often over-scheduled fall, take a moment to consider some of these organizing tips to get you and your family ready for September:

  1. Go through the kids’ clothes to find out what still fits.  Make a list of what they’ll need as far as shoes, clothes, jackets, etc. and go shopping for those items.
  2. Pull out the required school supplies list and see what you already have in house.  Check off what you have and take the list shopping to buy other supplies.  Put everyone’s supplies in their backpack or a separate bag.
  3. One week before school starts, (or at least a few days) practice going to bed on time and waking up when you would need to for school.  Use the extra time to spend outside in the morning, or catching up on things you wanted to do all summer.
  4. If you don’t have one, make a file for “School Information” and “Kids Activities” for each child.  This could be a hanging file or a pocket folder.
  5. Create activity bags for after school sports, lessons or classes. That way the kids can grab & go! Have hooks for these bags in a mudroom or front closet.
  6. Decide where & when homework will be done.  For younger children the kitchen or dining room table might work if they need help from parents.  For older children a desk in their room is better for concentration.
  7. Establish a morning routine for yourself and the kids. For non-readers you can make a pictogram of what they need to do in the morning:  get dressed, make bed, eat breakfast, and brush teeth.
  8. Hang a family calendar in your kitchen so everyone knows where they need to be each day.  Also mark half days and days off so you know when you need to be home for the kids or have a babysitter.
  9. Handle school papers and forms every day.  Go through the papers as the kids are doing homework.  Read each, trash it or put it in a “to do” or “to file” pile.  Mark significant dates on a Family Calendar and throw away the paper whenever possible.  Keep your To Do pile on a desk or hall table so you look at it every day until it’s done.
  10. When the kids are back in school – take a day off for yourself! Get a massage, a haircut or mani/pedi. Get together with other moms & celebrate – you survived the summer!