The start of a new school year is always exciting, but for many families, the thought of returning to the morning rush can also be daunting. Schedules become filled with homework and activities, and even simple things like eating a balanced breakfast can be impossible at best. How do you stay organized? As a parent of three kids ages 13, 4, and 18 months, here are five of my favorite back to school tips for ensuring a smooth transition:
1. Enlist your kids' help as much as possible. Parents, if your kids are at the age where they can help pack their own lunches, let them! Not only will it teach responsibility, but it will also lighten your load a bit. My daughter has been helping pack her lunch since first grade. I initially supervised her, but now as a 7th grader, she does a great job. It also helps our evenings and mornings run much smoother!
2. Complete everything the night before. We have a rule in our house where permission slips and homework have to be dealt with before bedtime -- no exceptions. Have all lunches packed and ready to be pulled out of the fridge, choose outfits the night before, and have car keys in visible spots. Better yet, consider putting a tile on your keychain so you'll never have to waste time looking for car keys again! This helps keep the peace in the morning and get you out the door faster.
3. Meal prep is your best friend. Balanced breakfasts can be tough! If you have older kids, consider choosing breakfasts that are portable and can be eaten on the way to school. If you have more time in the morning, consider making a batch of egg muffins or overnight oats for the week so you can easily pull them out each morning. Try to simplify your breakfast routine as much as possible to save time and stress.
4. Have a designated homework corner or portable homework station. When it comes to homework, does your child do best at the kitchen table? Or perhaps he or she needs their own quiet space? However your child learns best, have a designated corner of the house where they can successfully complete their homework. If the spot changes, consider creating a portable homework station so it can be taken wherever your child needs it. Have all supplies in one central spot so you aren't scrambling to find them when needed.
5. Give yourself grace. It's easy to get caught up in the crazy of the school year, but remember that you will find your new rhythm. If it takes a little while to get into a good routine, that's ok! Take it one step at a time and remember to do what's best for you and your family.
Do you have any back-to-school tips you'd like to share? We want to hear about them!
About the Author:
Jessica is an East Coast girl originally from Boston, MA but recently transplated to Austin, TX. She is a former OB Nurse Educator turned Content Manager and Brand Strategist. She recently founded Every Mama Birth Education, where she creates customized childbirth education courses for busy moms, in the comfort of their own homes. When she’s not busy blogging or being a pregnancy and birth nerd, you can catch her chasing around her three busy kids and rescue fur baby. You can also follow her antics on Instagram.