The back to school season can be pretty stressful for families. The unstructured days of summer give way to a myriad of responsibilities and routine. From getting everyone up and dressed, to extracurricular activities, making dinner and completing homework assignments, days can become pretty hectic. We’ve compiled a few tips that will help you and your family ease into the back-to-school routine.
1. Prep the Night Before
Earlier wake-up times make readjusting to the morning routine harder. Getting everyone dressed, fed, and in the car can seem like a daunting task first thing in the morning. So, why not try to spread out the work? Decide on outfits the night before and have them laid out and waiting to avoid any fashion dilemmas come morning. Healthy lunches can also be prepared the night before and stored (in their lunch boxes), in the fridge, ready to be handed out in the morning. Remember to be mindful so what you pack won’t get too soggy to eat!
2. Keep Organized
Keep all your family’s activities and tasks in one place. Purchase a day planner at an office supply store or, consider making a fun activities calendar on a whiteboard. Turn a small corner of your home into a “command center” where you can keep your activities, errands, and appointments organized and readily available for everyone to see.
3. Implement a Study Routine
Ensuring that all the kids’ homework gets done on time is often a struggle. Set up a designated time and place each day when children know they are expected to be focused and get their work done will help turn a task into a habit. Kids still don’t want to sit down? Make this study-time one for the whole family! While the kids are finishing up their math homework, Mom can send off a few last minute emails while Dad writes out his to-do list for the next day.
4. Create a Weekly Meal Plan
Cut out the need for last minute trips to the grocery store or unhealthy, quick fixes, like calling for pizza, by creating a weekly meal plan for your family to follow. Pick one day a week where you plan out your meals and write a list for everything you will need. Templates for meal planning and grocery lists can be found all over Pinterest and are available for quick and easy printing. Many dinners can even be turned into make-ahead lunches for the following day.
Get the kids involved in the planning process by asking them to pick one healthy meal each week—and if everyone deserves a little reward (like not doing the dishes) consider a wholesome meal out at Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes.
5. Don’t Let the Fun Stop!
Yes, the school year can cause a little added stress and more responsibilities, but don’t let that stop all the fun you and your family have been having during the summer months. Weekends and no-homework evenings can allow for fun, family activities like picnic dinners and walks to explore a new section of your neighborhood.
Do you have any tips that have helped get your family back into the school-year swing? We’d love to hear about them in the comments below!