Day by day, dusk comes just a little earlier, nights feel just a little bit cooler and, if you listen closely, the rustling of the leaves will tell you that no matter how hot it still is outside, fall is just around the corner.
What does all of that mean? You got it: back to school time is here. And while your kids might not be too enthused with the idea of schedules, homework, and early morning wake-ups, you can make the transition a little easier for you and them by following these 6 back-to-school tips.
- Declutter and Organize – Still hanging onto every paper your child brought home from school last year? Are you sure those skirts and jeans you bought in the spring will still fit on the first day of school? Toss or donate things that are no longer useful and have a clutter-free place for everything else. Add shelving units, bookcases, or cubbies if you need a little extra storage space.
- Designate a Study Area – If this year will be your child’s first encounter with “real” homework, make sure they have a place to get it done. A desk in the bedroom or a work station in the kitchen will help them complete their assignments comfortably, while a reading nook will allow them to space and luxury of getting lost in the pages of a good book.
- Plan for Activities – If your child is involved in after-school activities, you’ll need a place for all the gear that often comes along with them. Install coat hooks, cubbies, and benches to keep instruments, sporting gear, and outer wear off the floor and organized.
- Designate a Command Center – Use a combo bulletin board and chalkboard to keep track of everyone’s schedules and to-do lists. Add a calendar to jot down important dates so that no one misses a recital, game, or party.
- Set the Alarm Clocks – If your kids don’t have mobile devices with alarm features, invest in a couple of alarm clocks to prod everyone out of bed and out of the house on time. Consider doing a dry run of getting up and ready before the first day of school to see if you need to make any adjustments.
- Streamline Meal Prep – Start making double batches of meals and freezing half so that you have a healthy, home-cooked meal ready to pop in the oven on those hectic nights. And keep plenty of ready-to-eat fruits and veggies on hand to make after school snacking a breeze.
Here’s another great back to school preparation idea: a water heater performance and safety inspection. With everyone soon to be getting up and ready at the same time, your water heater is about to endure the extra demands placed upon it. Is it up to the challenge?