Monica Friel is a featured guest blogger for Zealous Good. As President of Chaos to Order, Monica helps us stay organize in a do-good way!
Kids will be heading back to school soon and it’s a great time of year to get organized. The new found structure of the school day helps kids and parents alike get back into a routine. Here are some tips to make the transition back to school an organized one:
Shop for school supplies early
August is the best time to buy school and office supplies at great prices. Go through the supplies you have left over from last year and determine what you’ll need for the upcoming school year. If you like to purchase all new, consider donating school supplies from last year. Many schools can make great use of your leftover supplies.
Give your internal clock some time to adjust
Did bedtime routines get out of whack over the summer months? Don’t expect late sleepers to adjust immediately. Plan ahead to adjust sleep cycles slowly over time so kids feel awake and prepared that first week of school.
Set up a homework station
Establishing good homework habits right away will be an important part of student’s success. Find a place that your child feels comfortable working and make sure it’s equipped with a good writing surface, extra school supplies and good lighting. A comfortable place to do homework is essential.
Prepare for the paper deluge
Create a file at the start of each year for the current grade. Keep all important papers in the file throughout the year. At the end of the year, sit with your child and weed through the papers determining what to hold on to and what to get rid of. Then put the file in a bankers size keepsake box. Over time, you will have a nice organized keepsake of each school year. Having a good system in place so you will know what to do with papers will help to keep things in order. You can also read about how to keep papers organized in a previous Zealous Good post.
Weed out with the kids
Kids (of appropriate age) love to take charge. They usually know what they want to keep and what they can get rid of. Do a purge with them before school starts. Get their space organized and offer new school supplies or clothing as an incentive to eliminate outgrown or unwanted items.
Set up a landing station
Plan ahead for backpack, coats and shoes that will be flying in the house. Set up the entryway with hooks or shelving to hold backpacks, etc… Also a bulletin board for invitations, artwork and special papers is helpful. They easier it is for kids to put things away, the better the chance for that space to stay organized.
Create a “Night Before School” routine
The best way to make sure things get done is to incorporate them into a routine. Establish a nighttime routine or checklist that helps kids prepare for the next day. Have them pack up lunch, set out clothing, get backpack and school papers ready, etc… Anything they can do the night before will help them sail through the morning more quickly.
A little advanced planning and organization will help the kids and you get off to school with the best possible start!