It is that time of year again! The last minute scramble to buy supplies, clothes, complete check off lists from teachers and time to change the routine that you just got in from summer. How do parents juggle the back to school tasks and remain level headed at the same time? Experience is a good starter! Parents of younger children are new to the game and may struggle in the transition, while experienced parents may only need to fine tune the daily grind or add a few fresh new ideas. This list is by no means complete, but we bet that you will find a few useful tips to make back to school fun for the whole family!
Most of the following is best when done on the weekend or if you have weekdays off, choose one of those days. Pick one day or your Friday evening so that you can enjoy your other time off from the week.
Make these tasks family fun by including everyone!
Plan and prepare meals for the week. Include school lunches, family dinners and work lunches. Meal prepping is a great time to include children to help assist and to find out what their new favorite foods are.
Prep Snacks Individually
Separate bulk snacks into small baggies or containers. Prepare enough for the week in lunches as well as after school snacks. Use more perishable items such as fruit earlier in the week, and save more self stable snacks for late in the week. Snack ideas: grapes, blueberries, baby carrots, bell pepper strips, cheese, yogurt, trail mix.
Pick a small household chore to do each day of the week so that all chores don’t pile up and use all of your days off. On days off, choose one day for tasks and the other day to spend together as a family, chore free.
Stay Ahead of the Game
Procrastination can get the best of anyone and can snowball into much larger projects. If you find something that can be done in the moment, complete it so that the task is not hanging over your head until you finish it.
Set Clothes Out
Who wants to look for matching socks, uniforms, clothes or shoes in the morning? It can slow your routine down by several minutes. Plan ahead and set out 3-5 complete outfits for children and yourself before the school week. You will be thankful that you did, especially on extra difficult or late mornings.
One of the last things that a parent needs is to find out that a huge project is due the next day. Worst than that, finding out that you need to make a trip to the store for supplies too. Check in with your child about progress on homework and upcoming assignments. Ask to see the schedule so that as a parent, you can help keep your child stay on track with deadlines and due dates.