Updated: Aug 17, 2019
It feels like we were just shopping for prom dresses and attending graduations and parties and now we are looking at the start of the 2019-2020 school year.
If you are like most parents there is a sense of joy and dread for the start of the new school year.
Joy because you do not have to worry about child care, organizing your child’s free time, or them losing the knowledge they learned last year.
Dread because now the arguments over organization, homework, getting out of the bed, and nightly routines are about to begin.
It does not HAVE to be this way. In fact, every school year every parent has great plans to get organized but then your energy and the plan falls apart by the 2nd week.
In this post, I will give you 10 tips to get and stay organized for the school year. I will also share some of my absolute favorite finds that are low cost options to use to organize you and your kiddos.
Here's How to Get Organized
1) Now is the time to do your school shopping. School may not start for a couple of weeks but supplies are already in the stores. Get your class list and take a Saturday to shop for supplies,clothes and household items that you will need for the upcoming year. If you are not a fan of the crowds then my favorite spot to shop is Amazon! Actually Amazon is more of an addiction, but I love anything that makes my life easier. I will give you a few finds I adore.
2) When buying school supplies organize your child’s school subjects by colors. You can find folders, book covers, notebooks, and pens in the same color to help your child recognize and grab quickly their belongings for the next class.
Yellow = English
Green = Math
Blue = History
Red = Science
Make it interesting and fun. Have them prioritize the colors from their most favorites to their
least favorite and assign the subjects the same from most to least favorite.
3) Now you have your color system going you need to have a way that your child can organize their homework and weekly projects. I suggest using a door hanging business organizer such as the 6 pocket organizer here. The weekly homework assignments, projects, papers, permission slips, lunch money, etc. go into the designated day, Monday through Friday, with a pocket left over for miscellaneous items such as extra paper, pens, and lunch money.
Have your child do their homework the weekend before or at the beginning of the week for the entire week and place it in the pockets ready to turn in on the correct day. This also will help you to glance into the pockets on the way out the door to see if they have grabbed everything and it’s all in one convenient place.
4) Does your child have a desk accessible to them so they can do their homework uninterrupted?
This needs to be organized as well to have supplies within easy reach to include paper,
paperclips, stapler, pens, pencils, pencil sharpener, glue, tape, calculator, rulers, index cards,
scissors, markers, erasers, reading lamp, and a hole puncher. These items can be stored in a rolling 5 drawer organizer that is placed beside the desk. This keeps items within reach but
keeps the desk cleared for homework.
5) Set a specific time and day before the start of the school week to organize for the upcoming week. For example, Sunday from 6pm -630pm can be the designated time to have your child pull out a week’s worth of outfits ready to go. You can use a wardrobe organizer to divide daily outfits. It’s a cool grab and go system that will save a lot of time and the inevitable whining “I don’t know what to wear” in the mornings.
If your child is a fashionista and loves to dress for success you can even go so far as to organize her accessories along with her outfit with a Paula Deen organizer. LOVE IT!
6) When shopping for a backpack, keep organization instead of trend in mind. Having extra
pockets inside and out, a USB charging port and a waterproof pack will help keep items within easy reach and safe from inclement weather.
7) Be sure to clean out your child’s backpack once a week to keep it organized. This can also be done before the school week begins while the kids are picking out their wardrobe. Warning! Something may be alive in there so approach with caution!
8) Moving out of the child’s space into the family space, it is really important to have a convenient calendar system that the whole family can add to and see what events are going on. I love the dry-erase magnetic calendar that can go on the fridge. It has fun stickers that you can use that keep the kid’s attention. This one actually has a chore chart to keep them on task and a to do list that kids can organize their evening from the most important task to the least and mark it off as they go. For me this was a three in one tip for organizing. Kids love visuals and this helps them to have a sense of pride as they can see what they accomplish and your trash gets taken out.
9) To keep lunch easy, spill proof and homemade I love this Bentgo Kids lunch box.
Not only is this a coolest way to send your kids off to school with a healthy lunch but Bentgo donates a portion of the proceeds to Feed the Children so you can help your child as well as other children have a healthy meal.
10) Establish a routine about 1 week prior to the start of school. I know you want your kid to enjoy the very last days of freedom, but it is very hard on children to not have a routine all summer and then try to focus and function during the first weeks of school when they never became accustomed to a routine. This will make your life easier during the first stages of school. Also,instead of getting the kids up in the morning and allowing them to sit around, structure a fun“last week of freedom mini vacation”. You can go to your local tourist spots to explore the fun things around your hometown.
OK So I know I said 10 tips but who does not like to get more! More is good right!
11) If your child is forgetful and leaves books at school on the regular, then talk to the teachers and see if they have extra text books. If you can get extra books you leave them at home so there is never an excuse of “I can’t do my homework I forgot to bring my book home” or “My books was too heavy for me to carry”
With a little bit of preparation in the beginning and establishing routines early, you and your children can have a successful and highly organized 2019/2020 school year.
Have a blessed and balanced day!
Melissa Smith is an LMFT in the state of Kentucky. To find out more about her click here.
Live. Life. Balanced.Today is a blog written by licensed marriage and family therapist.
For more information about counseling go to www.LifeInMotionKentucky.com