The first day of school is around the corner. And it can be an exhausting time for parents! While parents are welcoming the return to routines, there is a lot to do to prepare your children to go back to school. No matter what this time of year looks like for you and your family, we have a back-to-school checklist for parents that will help you and your children start the school year with success.
Back-To-School Checklist for Parents
1. Start readjusting bedtime routines early.
With school just a couple of weeks away, now is a great time to fight those bedtime battles and get your children readjusted to their new bedtime schedule and routines. Since there is still some time before school, move the bedtime back 30 minutes at a time. If it is the week before school, maybe move the bedtime back every day or every other day. This will also help everyone feel rested for the first day of school.
2. Use a family calendar to keep track of school schedules.
Once you receive your school schedules, you might want to put important information and dates on the calendar. For example, if your child is in elementary, you might add what days they go to gym or art class because different activities might require different attire.
If your child is in extracurricular activities, do not forget to add practices, games, and other special events to the family calendar. And don’t forget to mark those PTA meetings and events and Teacher Appreciation Week (so you can love teachers in unexpected ways this year!).
To keep your family calendar well-organized, color-code everyone’s activities. Depending on the size of your family, you might use different colors for different types of activities or a different color for each family member.
3. Have a plan to organize school forms.
At the beginning of the year, you will get bombarded with school forms. There will be preference sheets for the teacher, health information for the school nurse, permission slips for the coach, and emergency contact lists for the front office.
Since these forms are necessary and easy to misplace, place a folder in a secure location (e.g., a filing cabinet or an empty drawer in a night stand) where you will place all of these forms. If you have more than one child, consider having a folder for each child.
Once you have completed all of the forms, go over the forms with your child and place the folder in their backpack. Ask your child to return your folder to its designated location after turning all the forms in to the appropriate teachers and staff members. This could be a great organizational tool all year long!
4. Set up a homework station.
Before school starts, set up a homework station in your home with your children. As a family, decide where the homework station should be and what types of supplies are needed for it.
The homework station can be a counter, a desk, or an entire room. The important part is it should be an area that is comfortable and a good work environment for your children. Think of an area that is quiet and can be monitored as necessary.
If a computer needs to be in the station, make sure there is an outlet nearby. If a computer is not necessary, then make this area a technology-free zone. You might consider having a cell phone bucket in which your children can place their phones on the way to the station.
5. Get everything ready for the first day of school the night before.
The first day of school can be a struggle. Oftentimes, parents and children are running around in a hurry trying to get out the door on time. And sometimes, picking out the right outfit can take a long time (especially if you have teenagers).
To make the morning of the first day of school go smoothly, have your children lay out their back-to-school outfits. This way, they can take their time picking out their outfit the night before, and they can start their day off with less stress. This will give your children more confidence as they walk through the doors on the first day.
Help your children pack their backpacks with all the necessary school supplies, snacks, and a clear water bottle. Put backpacks and your children’s shoes by the door to make it easy to walk out the door on time. It might even be a great idea to put your purse or bag and shoes by the door just in case you get caught up in the chaos on the first day of returning back to routines.
6. Support the teachers at your schools.
As we check off items on our back-to-school checklist for parents, let’s not forget about the teachers who are getting ready to make a difference in the lives of our children. Many teachers have to buy school supplies for their classrooms and for their students with their own money.
At Chase Oaks, we have a great opportunity to help teachers start their school year off right. Teachers are coming to shop at our annual SchoolZone Store this weekend for free! They will be able to shop for school supplies at no cost to help set up their classrooms for success.
If you want to make a difference in the lives of teachers this year, you can shop on Amazon for teacher supplies and deliver it directly to our store at the Chase Oaks Family Center. We will be accepting donations throughout the week!
For other ways you can support teachers this school year, check out Five Ways to Support Teachers.
After going through the back-to-school checklist for parents, you and your family should be ready for the first day of school!
This season at Chase Oaks, we have some exciting opportunities and events coming up to help your family stay organized this year and build deeper connections and relationships with one another. Stay tuned to our website and Facebook page for more details!