It’s officially the end of summer for most of you and the beginning of back to school time. Now you are either limping to the finish line of summer and can’t wait for the kids to be back in school, or you can’t believe how fast summer went by and are wishing for just a few more weeks with the kids. Either way, getting ready for back to school is here. I am somewhere in between–I LOVE summer and getting to spend more time with my kids, but I do LOVE the structure and routine (shocker!) of the kids being in school.
I was thinking about all the ways I like to prepare for getting back to school and wrote down a list of all the major things I do before they walk in that first day. Today, I’m going to share a list of 6 tasks that I believe are important when preparing for the first of school. This by no means is an exhaustive list, but just some key tasks that can make life easier for you and the kids as you ease back into a routine.
- Combine school supply lists into one master list. If you have several school supply lists to shop from, it’s worth the extra time to go through each list and create one master list. You will find that there are repeating supplies on several of the lists. For example, each list might have red pens, dry erase markers, no.2 pencils, etc. Just tally up how many from each list so when you’re in the store buying the supplies you know exactly how many no.2 pencils, etc. you need for all of your kids and you’re not having to check 3 separate lists.
- Take advantage of tax-free shopping. If your state participates in tax-free shopping, this is a perfect opportunity to stock up on other essential items, like socks and underwear, for the school year. My friend Teri does this every year for her kids!
- Start easing into a routine. A couple of weeks before school starts, I like to start getting my kids, and myself, used to getting back into a routine. One thing we do is start going to bed a little earlier so there bodies can adjust before school starts and it’s not such a big shock to their system on the first day. It can be hard enough for some kids to wake up and get moving, so I always recommend getting them to bed earlier so they can get the sleep they need to wake up earlier in the morning.
- Clean backpacks and lunch boxes. I am not the person who buys an new backpack and lunch box every year. I decided when my kids started kindergarten that I was going to take the time to research and purchase higher quality backpacks and lunch boxes so that they would last for the long haul. Now, it did take me a while to find the lunch boxes and supplies that I liked best, but I finally have them! I will put links to my favorite supplies at the end of this post. So, before going back to school it’s a great time to clean the back packs (because, eww!) and lunch boxes.
- Make a weekly lunch menu and stock up. If your kids take lunch to school, it really is a time and sanity saver to plan out their lunches for the week. You can totally get them involved in this process and in the making of the school lunches. I am always a advocate for making a plan! You can always change it if you need to. Once you have your plan, go grocery shopping and stock up! Don’t forget to stock up on after-school snacks as well!
- Celebrate the first day of school. This is something I started doing a long time ago. We always celebrate the last day of school, why not the first? I want the start of school to be exciting and special for my kids. It’s going to come with some natural anxiety and first day jitters, so I want to help ease that as much as possible. On the first day, I always make a special breakfast like pancakes, waffles, or french toast, with bacon or sausage. I also like to play fun music (usually Kids Bop) while we’re getting ready!
My favorite Backpacks and Lunch boxes:
Wildkin Double Decker Lunch Box*
Rubbermaid Lunch Blox*
LL Bean Backpack
If you want to read more about organizing kids lunches read Stress-free school lunches and My Favorite Lunch Box Essentials.
I hope this helps you as you prepare for back to school. What are some ways you get ready for the start of school?
*This post contains some affiliate links which means I get paid a small percentage should you choose to purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you, yippee!