Hey there, try to hide your excitement!
It’s almost back to school time – are you ready?
The summer holidays are filled with lots of fun, family time. But it’s a looooong time to have the kids home, entertaining them and often juggling work too.
So, there’s nothing quite like that first day back when you’ve dropped the kids off at school and feel that little smile spread across your face. Freedom!
But hold that exciting thought for a tick.
Before you get them back to school, there are a few things you’ve got to get organised.
Our top 10 ways to plan your school year
- Mark down all the important dates like when to pick up books from school, uniform shop opening times, and the first day for the different year levels (some may start earlier than others).
- Rather than shopping with multiple stationery lists, combine them into one list. Mark down how many pens, pencils, exercise books etc. you need in total and then get your kids to help mark off their list when you get back home. You can get some great bargains from shops like Officeworks who’ll match your school stationery list by 20%.
- If you’re starting a new school, or have anxious kids, start preparing them by walking or driving the route to school, showing them where you’ll drop them and pick them up, and having a play on the playground. Teachers are usually at school the week beforehand, so ask the Principal if you can arrange for your kids to visit their teachers in the classroom.
- Put some hooks by the front door where your kids can hang their school bag. Teach them that their bag and library bag need to ‘live’ here, so you avoid the morning ‘where’s my bag gone’ madness.
- Let them choose a new lunchbox and drink bottle and start showing them how to pack a healthy lunch for school. You can do this in the weeks leading up to school and have picnics where they take along their packed lunch. Oh, and check their one from last year isn’t at the bottom of their bag, still filled with rotting fruit or furry sandwiches!
- Most sports and activities resume with school, so get yourself a planner where you can note down the movements of your family. This will help you know what your nights will look like and the dinners you need to prepare (either quick ones, or ones ahead of time).
- Get in the habit of planning your meals. Prepare your shopping list and go shopping once a week – you’ll save time and money doing it this way. Remember to include breakfasts and school lunches in your plan.
- Start getting back into school sleeping patterns after the holiday late nights and sleep-ins. Tired kids are grumpy kids, and the back to school routine will be more stressful than it needs to be.
- Plan your daily routine with your kids and hang it up for all to see. Have clear times when you expect them to wake up, have breakfast, brush their hair and teeth and be ready to leave. Do the same for after school, so they know when they need to do homework, shower, have dinner etc. Remember to factor in time where you’ll sit with them to do their reader and time to hang out as a family.
- Check their uniforms and shoes to see if they still fit – kids tend to grow over summer! If you don’t want to buy brand new uniforms, ask around if anyone has kids who’ve outgrown their ones and do trades with other mums. Make sure you know the school shoe policy too – some school will only allow black leather lace-ups and T-Bar sandals.
Overcome back to school anxiety by making it fun!
Although your kids will start grumbling when they see all the ‘back to school’ ads on telly, make it fun. Let them choose their lunchbox and library bag with their favourite character, and go to a fun stationery shop like Smiggle and allow them to choose a special pencil/pen.
If your child is anxious about starting school (going from kinder to prep is a huge step), find some starting school stories and get into the routine of reading every night. Not only will they look forward to reading time, but they’ll learn how to transition to school.
You could also hold a sleepover with some mates in the week beforehand. They can reconnect with their mates after the long holiday time (if they haven’t caught up often) and get some of that nervous excitement out of their system. Try a camp out in the back yard, or set up tents in your living room. Be prepared for little sleep though!
Do you have any mum tips for surviving the back to school routines?
If you’ve got any further ideas on how to get your kids excited to go back to school, please feel free to share them below.
And if you’re looking for a wall planner to help you plan your school days, out the Daily Orders range here.