August is just around the corner! School be will starting soon and daylight hours will be ever decreasing. As much as I love the approach to fall time after a hot summer, getting back into the swing of school seems so DAUNTING. As we gather up school supplies and buy new clothes and shoes for school, consider these three tips to help you transition into a new school year!
Having an intentional place for things is the best way to prevent losing them! Whether it is back packs and lunchboxes, shoes, or take home folders, the easiest way to keep organized is to have a command station. In our house, it’s the laundry room! I have a dry erase board where each person in our family has a different color. When newsletters are sent home or sports events are announced, it is written on our family calendar. I also have a place for them to put their folders and papers that need my attention. Shoes are taken off before entering the house and thus can be found in that same place when they are needed again tomorrow. Backpacks are hung on a hook and snacks for the next day are packed. We usually spend the first week of school going back through afternoon procedures. It helps me to find their belongings AND teaches them responsibility and organization.
Bedtime and Routines
As a former teacher, I can tell you that students who have a bedtime routine and get enough sleep are able to perform to their potential. On the flip side, those who are sleep deprived have a harder time staying focused and doing their best. Sleep is VERY important. The older our school age children get, the busier their schedules can be. Bedtime needs to be a priority. If time management is not your strength, set an alarm that would go off when it is time to get ready for bed. This may be difficult at first but stick to it; hopefully, over time, the transition into bedtime will become easier. On the same note, having a bedtime routine, just like when they were infants, will also help ease them into their beds and fast to sleep!
Evening prep can include a myriad of things from packing lunches to picking out clothes for the next day. If either or both of these are a battles of wills come sun-up, try prepping the night before. If your child wants to be involved in making lunches or picking out their clothes, allot time for this in the evenings. No one wants to spend the precious time they have before school arguing about what to wear, or even what they want for lunch or snack, minutes before the bus comes. If the thought of adding one more thing to your evening routine makes you cringe, try a hanging clothing organizer. Allocate one day of the week to pick out clothes for each day and place them in the hanging organizer. When it is time to get dressed in the morning before school, your child will know exactly where to find the clothes for that day, hopefully with little fuss. Making it their responsibility is good training for the different jobs and duties they have at school too!