Monday, August 8, 2016

Back To School Preparations

It's August. Most children go back to school soon! Are you ready?

Here's how we are getting prepared at our house:

Empty last year's backpack. Recycling the papers, tossing the short pencils and dried up pens

Yes, I really prefer that this is completed soon after the school year ends, but this year my daughter went straight into band camp and taking an online class. The backpack was quickly put away and out of sight for the rest of the summer.

Assess clothing

Band camp brought to our attention that sneakers were too small. They have now been replaced, int addition to a favorite cami. Are there clothes in the closet that are too small, have holes or tears or won't be worn for any reason? We donate or toss those. Do we need new items as a result? Don't forget to consider socks and undergarments! I find that sales are pretty good this time of year for those items. Replace now if needed. We keep school clothes pretty basic at our house. Jeans and t shirts usually. And I know the graphic t shirts plentiful. Maybe jeans are next on the list.

Assess school supplies

We have all of our supplies in one space. Well, mostly. I guess I need to combine a couple stock pile areas. We reuse items when we can. Usually items like calculators, erasers, rulers, backpacks, lunch bags, and even red pens. Check those items you do have off the required supply list.

Stock up

I found a package of four boxes of tissue (Kleenex brand) at Staples last week for $4. I jumped on it knowing that teachers love to get tissue for their classrooms. If there is a good price on any item that you know your child will need buy it when you see it. Crayons, glue, markers, notebooks and paper are common ones that need to be purchased nearly every year. Buy only if you need them though!

Schedule Planning

My daughter has band practice and flute lessons to manage after school hours, in addition to homework. When we signed up for flute lessons we purposely scheduled it on a night our doesn't have band practice. We personally like to have early lessons so we can get dinner in a a regular time for us, and get homework started at a reasonable hour. Creating routines for young children helps later manage expectations for everyone, and it seems to have helped our girls learn time management as they have aged into the high school level.

Managing Paperwork and Emails

Each year, I set up a file for each of my daughter's to handle school papers that come home that need to be kept. I also have a folder with my email service so I can put related in emails in one place for future reference. Once my girls hit high school the papers seemed to diminish dramatically. But the system still works. I am currently deleting last emails and going through the files from last year. I don't need the grade report from each quarter, just the final grades for the year for example. If you have young children bring home artwork consider finding a bin to store in for the year. Remember, you don't have to keep everything they create. And a spelling test..probably not worth saving long term. In fact, I found that some of the writing young children produce is some of the best!

I have more preparations to share soon. What are you doing to prepare for school season?

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