The beginning of a school year always feels like a fresh start with a clean slate, with lots of possibilities. Inevitably, things can start to get a little hectic as the homework starts piling up, school fundraisers begin, and PTA meetings commence. Taking the time to incorporate some simple routines and habits this back-to-school season can help keep day to day life running more smoothly for you and your family. These useful school tips can help families find some balance during the back to school rush, and also teach students some positive habits as well.
- Pick some new routines
Mornings can be chaotic, but they can be more pleasant with some routines like packing lunches the night before or laying out outfits before bedtime. Think about what routines would most benefit your family; perhaps your student tends to forget homework or textbooks, and so maybe have a routine where a parent spends a few minutes going through a student’s backpack in the evening to avoid scrambling. Life is stressful enough, and managing the small things can make all the difference in the world. Try to make these routines kid-friendly by setting up lunch-packing supplies (reusable lunch bags, snack bags, snack foods, etc.) in one area.
- Homework Area
This a simple idea that can make homework more enjoyable, productive, and organized. It’s a good idea for students to have a designated area for working on homework free of distractions like the television. Consider your child’s learning style when picking a spot; maybe he or she works better with people around. It’s also a good idea to get homework supplies like paper, pencils, markers, and a calculator all kept together in a nearby drawer or bin.
- Check homework and papers regularly
Try to implement a system for managing homework and papers that come home each afternoon. It’s a lot easier to keep up with it than to fall behind and end up with an overwhelming stack of papers. It can help keep your kids organized and keep you on top of any important information, such as upcoming open-houses, PTA events, or school fundraisers. Teaching your student to go through their backpacks on a daily basis will help them learn organizational skills, and also prevent forgotten permission slips and homework.
- Create a family calendar and message board
Whether it be the refrigerator or a wall somewhere, keep a calendar with important events (school trips, holidays, doctor visits, appointments, fundraisers) along with a bulletin or dry-erase board for everyone in the family to write reminders and important notes. To make it fun, have each family member use a different color for their notes and dates.