Tips for Getting Your Home Ready for Back-to-School Season
By now, children are getting ready for or have already started their school years. Making sure your home is prepared for the school year can have a significant impact on the way your household gets ready in the mornings and can reduce overall stress levels. Keep your home fine-tuned for the school year with these back-to-school tips you can implement any time to make your days a little less chaotic:
Shop now. Sending your child off for a new semester of school takes a good deal of preparation. Get a jump on seasonal shopping by making sure your kids have all the necessary supplies, clothes, backpacks and organizers, and everything else they need before the autumn rush. At the end of the year, set aside what can be reused and start your list of what you’ll need as soon as possible for next season.
Organizing school supplies. One of the biggest stress triggers during the school year involves organizing school supplies. Start a routine of keeping school supplies in one area of the home and hanging backpacks near the door. Keep it easy by personalizing a hook for each child and encouraging them to keep their backpacks and coats there when they come home from school. Remind children to return their homework to their backpacks at the end of the night so that everyone is ready to go in the morning.
Streamline lunch. Some children eat in the cafeteria with no problem, but others prefer to have a homemade lunch. Either make lunches the night before, or encourage children to help with the process. Even young children can learn how to build a healthful lunch in the mornings if parents provide guidance. Keep child-friendly knives on hand, and show them how to put together a PB&J, bag some carrots, or throw together an easy salad. It’s a great life-skill to start early and can build confidence and independence in your child.
Keep a calendar. For parents of multiple children, calendars can be difficult to organize for the school year. Between work engagements, family get-togethers, school projects, fundraisers, and field trips, you may be familiar with hearing, “But my band concert is tonight, and I have nothing to wear!” Get rid of last minute event stress by helping your children learn to keep a calendar and requiring older children (and your spouse or partner!) to add events to the family calendar as soon as possible.
Make a snack station. Children may need to take a snack to school, for after school, or they may want one when they get home. Discourage them from eating unhealthy snacks at school by keeping an easily accessible snack station in the refrigerator and a drawer or cabinet. Keep 100% juice, water bottles, whole foods, and vegetables in easy to grab containers so it’s easy for your child to have something healthy.
Create a homework routine. Some kids more readily accept homework into their daily lives than others. Sympathize with children that it may not feel fair, but encourage them to get their homework done as soon as they get home or right after snack time. It will help your child build strong foundational knowledge which will help him or her later in school and in life.
Don’t forget chores. With school season back in full swing, the whole house may experience some differences in cleaning and other chore routines. Develop a chore list for children and adults that makes sense based on extra-curricular activities, homework requirements, and level of ability. Make chore time a family affair to be a good role model and teach children responsibility without making it feel like a punishment. After all, everybody’s got to balance work, home, and fun at some point in life, why not start early?
At the end of the day, every child is different and every successful family has a different approach. These are some broad view ideas that many families can use to start making day-to-day life a little less stressful and a little more rewarding. We hope the information helps you with your 2015-2016 school year transition.
Ready to find a new home to start implementing some of these great ideas? Invitation Homes has rental homes across the US waiting for your family!