Start the School Year with These 3 Tips
Like the last few licks of a juicy popsicle, many of us parents are trying to squeeze in the last bits of summer fun with our kiddos. We're amongst the lucky ones with schools that don't begin until after Labor Day. I’m still wrapping my head around the fact that my oldest embarking onto “real school” (aka public school Kindergarten) means several things: we will have to work around the academic school year calendar for vacations and trips; there will be PTA meetings and curriculum nights; and generally, a larger environment and community of people to navigate. All this boils down to more structure, and the need to be get prepared, in order for a successful transition.
Now, I’m no expert, since I’m a first-time “school mom” with my oldest entering the public school system this year. But I do know a thing or two about organization and prepping little minds as my oldest has been in a daycare learning environment since he was 18 months. Read on below for three things you can do right now at home to ensure a successful back to school start, for any ages.
1. CREATE A HOMEWORK SPACE.
Keep everyone motivated and excited on the homework front with a colorful, organized space designated just for this. All you need is a corner of a room, or a desk, and some portable containers stocked with homework supplies — No. 2s, coloring pencils, crayons, scissors, glue sticks — everything is at your child’s fingertips! We love to rotate my son’s favorite books of the moment, like the Crayon book that inspired our DIY Halloween costumes last year! For an added touch of fun, we’re loving this whimsical balloon dog eraser and the quintessential Moleskin journals. And don’t forget to lend a little greenery to the space, like these mini succulents — guaranteed to breathe good jujus indoors all year round ;)
2. SIMPLIFY YOUR CHILD'S CLOSET.
First, put away clothes that are out of season or wrong sizes. Then, I suggest creating a capsule wardrobe a la KonMari of sorts. Decluttering the closet will change your mindset and how you (and your kids) start the day. Keep good-quality basics in neutral colors and maybe a few statement pieces like this science varsity letter jacket. Don’t forget to streamline and organize the shoes, too! My magic rule is 5-5-5: 5 short sleeves, 5 long sleeves; 5 bottoms including jeans, plus 1-2 layering jackets. Mixing and matching is a breeze and getting out the door has never felt so easy! (If you missed our post featuring two awesome first day styles, check it out here.)
3. SET UP A "SCHOOL THINGS" DROP-OFF STATION BY THE FRONT DOOR.
This is a new idea that I’m implementing this year because I spent the entire last year misplacing my son’s daycare notices, forms, and homework in random places around the house. I’m eyeing this entryway console table — will make a gorgeous home for all those loose school things! Half the time I couldn’t remember bringing home anything at all, and the other half, I couldn’t remember that we needed to bring it back!
For extra credit: Read the new book How to Get Your Teacher Ready with your kiddo for some guaranteed laughs about preparing to head back to school. Hope you all have a successful transition. Happy Back to School!
If you missed our top 3 everyday clothing essentials for back to school, check out the post here.
And here's a fun video about what it looks like when you let 3 boys loose in the mall for back to school shopping!