Five Tips to Prepare for Back to School
Here are five great tips to help you get your kids ready to go back to school!
You can run, you can hide, but it’s coming! Soon those relaxing and easy going summer days will come to an end and we will be back into the school year grind. I don’t know about you, but even though I continued to work all summer – the bedtimes were later, the mornings were slower, the treats were abundant and screen time was plentiful! Getting the kids ready to change gears is going to be difficult. Not to mention, I took a lazy work approach to summer and joined in the fun, I need to get myself back into gear too!
Just thinking about what’s coming has made me tired.
However, there are a few things I’ve found that help easing into the school year a little gentler for us!
How to Prepare Your Kids for Back to School
1) Start an Early Bedtime Routine
Do not, I repeat, do not, try to go back to school time bedtime the night before school starts! Try to ease back into this a week or so ahead of time. I usually try to ease into it with re-introducing the more strict nighttime reading routine and moving the bedtime a little bit earlier every night. We also start waking earlier, rather than sleeping late. Getting the internal clocks adjusted helps a lot once school starts. It also helps establish a routine, and kids thrive in routine.
I also strongly suggest introducing an alarm clock, if you have not already. It makes them feel grown up and gives them responsibility. It may even be a nice back to school gift to get them excited about the new year. If you use or plan to use an alarm clock, go ahead and start setting those so they get in the habit of setting them and turning them off and getting up. I love thisfor my younger daughter. The color changing systems helps teach the younger kids when they can and cannot get out of bed – but the digital clock helps teach them about time. Win! Another option for those tech savy homes, is an Echo dot for kids. It has parental controls and 2 year guarantee. We put one in my daughter’s room a year ago and not only does she love it for her dance parties, but she sets her alarm before bed every night.
You are going to have to be consistent and firm. Trust me, they are going to whine that you are putting them in bed early while they want to enjoy the last of summer. Just stick with it.
2) Use Your Planner
Go ahead and organize your calendar with important dates! I go onto my township website and put ALL the dates in my calendar. You don’t want a day of no school (you know those random teacher in-service days that never fall on a holiday) to sneak up on you before you can arrange a sitter or take your day off work. I personally like to have everything in my phone calendar, but there is something to be said about writing it all down and having a visual. I just love this planner– It is simple as can be but gets the job done and you can see everything in one place.
3) Get School Supplies Early
Get those school supplies ordered now. Don’t wait until the day before school. I have done that, and you will walk into your local big box superstore and see empty cardboard displays and no supplies. Trust me on this. Do this as SOON as you can get the supply list. I go to Amazonfor the school supplies – they have an easily organized school supply section and it makes it as simple as can be. Who needs to deal with going to a store and shopping around. Get the list, cue it up and done.
Also, before you order those supplies, look at what you have from the last year. My daughter already had his old pencil pouch and his scissors. There is no need to waste money on new school supplies that you already own.
Also, pro tip – I Order extra of the school supplies for home to make a “homework station”. This makes getting the homework done hassle free.
4) School Clothes Shopping
Shop for new school clothes. This is another “trust me, I’ve done this” moment. (Seriously, I am the queen of learning the hard way!) Nothing like a cold snap at the end of August to realize you never bought your child new jeans and the others you own are capri-length! You don’t have to buy a whole new wardrobe, but make sure you have some newer fall items for when the cold mornings sneak up on you.
While my go to for back to school cuteness is Old Navybecause you cannot beat the prices and, lets face it, their styles for kids are spot on. I like to mix in a few “special” items. For this I go to stitch fixand schedule a special “back to school” box for my kids. Stitch fixdoes an amazing job at packaging their boxes for kids with stickers and things to color. But, the items are super cute and unique and, honestly, while more expensive than some does not break the bank. My girls are so excited to play fashion show when a new box arrives!
5) Get into Learning Mode
Get their minds into school mode. I know you don’t want to start with the hassle of homework yet, but go ahead and start letting them gear their minds back up for school. You don’t have to do a mornings worth of work, but get some review sheets of math problems and reading passages that will refresh them for where they left off.
Maybe worksheets aren’t your jam. You can still find some fun learning activities, such as reading groups at the local library or even going to a history or science museum. Just get that brain flipped back to the “on” switch. For your little ones, look into getting Osmo. This is a seriously cool learning tool. It does not even feel educational, heck, I love to play the games. But the games are so smart – before you know it your 6 year old will be able to make change from a $10 when she running her own pizza shop.
I hope the back to school season isn’t too rough for you. Do you do anything to prepare for it that would be helpful? Let me know about it!