I know – it seems like I JUST cleaned up the mess from the LAST school year and it’s time for the next one. School supply ads are everywhere and letters are coming in for sign-ups and back-to-school nights. Yikes!
I’ve managed to get two kids through school and one almost there (he’s going to be a sophomore this year) so I’ve picked up a few tricks along the way. I’m happy to share them with you:
- Pick up the school supply list for the grade ahead and keep it for next year. IF you are organized enough to remember where you put it this can save you time and money. Otherwise you are just bringing more paper into your home. These lists don’t change much from year to year so you can shop for great deals on clearance, early-bird, etc. and have them ready to go when your little one is a year older and ready to use them.
- Have a designated space for school supplies in your home and buy extras to use there. I’ve found drawer organizers like these to be invaluable. I use them for pencils, pens, colored pencils, drawing tools, construction paper, lined paper – anything the kids need on a regular basis for homework.
- Set up a place for their backpacks/bags when they come home. I hung up a multiple-hook coat rack for my children’s backpack’s just inside the back door. It gets them off the floor and to a place I can find when it’s time to do homework. It also eliminates running around looking for them the next morning. A win all around!
- Set up a place to do homework. It doesn’t have a to be fancy – the kitchen table is fine. The point is to have a place where homework is done there EVERY time – and where all the supplies are close at hand. This will really cut down on the arguments and excuses. “But I don’t have a pen!” “There’s one in the top drawer – right there.” Try it – it works wonders.
- Use technology to your advantage. Most of use have cell phones these days. Make sure everyone is on the same platform, then download a shared calendar app – google works fine. These can be color-coded so you know who is dad, mom, Elementary School, etc. and everyone can get reminders so there are no excuses. (Well, there will be, but this may minimize them.)
I hope this helps make your upcoming school year a little less crazy. Please share any tips you have with me. I’d love to hear them!