Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Organizing tips for back to school

I think back to school time is a time of both dread and excitement.  To begin to make the transition from the lazy hazy days of summer to the busy routine of the school year, here are a few tips:

1.  Create a family communication center.  This is an area where you will create a file for each family member as well as folders labeled "to do," "to return," "to file."  I use a simple file box, but you may find it easier to use stacking baskets or something of the sort.
2.  Designate a homework area for you child or children.  This can be at a desk in his or her own room,  but I find that younger kids like to be where you are.  My homework area is at the my dining room table.  I set aside a drawer in one of my sideboards that will hold supplies like paper and a pencil cup.
3.  Come up with a set night and morning routine.  Creating a check list that kids can mark off themselves I is a great idea.  I bought two small dry erase boards on which I can write the rules or check list.  Try to practice the routine the week before the start of school.
4.  Now is a great time to clean out closets and toys--maybe when your kids are off at school those first few days.  Get rid of/donate any toys, clothes, and books that they have outgrown.  Try to scale down the amount of clothes that they do have.  This will make getting ready in the morning much easier.  I really don't think that kids need more than about five to seven shirts and shorts/pants for school.  Anything more is superfluous.  I have become frustrated with my kids messing up their drawers every time they go to get an item of clothing.  Therefore I have decided to hang most clothes up in their closet.
5.  Take some time to think about meal planning.  I have created a notebook of favorite family recipes.  Maybe you want to think about doing a meal swap with neighbors.  Another idea is to get together with a few friends to cook in bulk.

Happy Back to School!!

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