Back to School is a busy, stressful time for parents so here are our 10 More Clever Back to School Hacks for Parents to help you get organised. And don’t worry if you missed them, you can check out the other 10 back to school hacks too!
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#1. Photograph Schedules
For both parents and students it can take a few weeks to get up to speed with the new schedule. So take a photo of all your children’s schedules so you open them quickly on your phone or tablet if you need them. And for older students, they should photograph their schedule to see what classes they have each day.
#2. Have a Dedicated Lunch Box Food Shelf
Thinking up new healthy lunch box ideas on a daily basis is a real pain. My kids used to end up with the same lunch day in day out. As they are now a bit older, I get them to make and pack their own lunches. I shop in advance and then we have a dedicated shelf for non perishable items they can choose from, along with a fruit bowl and sandwich fillers. And if they prepare their own lunch, they are more likely to eat it!
#3. Stretch New Shoes
Ok so you have braved the shops and gotten everyone the shoes they need for back to school. If the new shoes pinch because a) your child just wanted to get out of the shops and said they were perfect or b) their feet have grown a little bit, don’t panic. You can stretch them easily with the method below.
- Just get your child to put on thick socks, or 2 pairs of normal socks.
- Put on their new shoes
- Show you where the shoes pinch
- Then you simply blow dry them with hot air on the spots that pinch and this will stretch the leather.
- Wriggle toes to make sure they are fitting better.
- For best results, leave the shoes, and socks, on until they cool down.
- Repeat to stretch more if they are still tight fitting.
#4. Colour Code Books and Notebooks
If your child has a bag full of books, consider colour coding them so they can easily find the one they are looking for in their bag. Simply use a marker to colour along the top ‘spine’ and use the same colour on the notebook, copybook or workbook to go with that subject.
It works even better if you can get your child to slot the relevant notebook inside the cover of the textbook so they stay together in their bag.
#5. Create a Fun Rhyme to Teach Kids Routine
From day 1 it is a good idea to have a school day routine. Work out what suits your family best and stick to it. To make it more fun, how about creating a rhyme that the whole family learns around their routine?
From the morning routine to make getting out the door easier, get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, brush teeth, brush hair, pack lunches and leave to when children come home from school, a snack/homework/activity/dinner/bedtime routine.
Most children need order and creating a routine can mean avoiding homework battles or bedtime battles. And turning it into a rhyme will help the whole family learn it and stick to it.
I also love the free printables from I can teach my child that can be printed out and used by younger children to learn their routine.
#6. Create a Dedicated Homework Spot
Over the years I have found that giving the girls a dedicated homework spot speeds up process as they have everything to hand and they just naturally get their books out and are ready to get started once they have had a snack.
#7. Have a Dedicated Folder for School Stuff
Avoid finding papers in the bottom of your child’s bag by giving them a folder to store notes to and from school. That way you won’t miss party invitations, fees that need to be sent to school with your child, notes about class trips, permission slips and other items that are given out to your child.
#8. Create an Online Calendar
Your school may have moved to sending text messages or emails about important dates. Create an online calendar that you can share with your partner and childminder. As soon as you get a note, text or email add the date to the calendar and this will make it easier to keep track of days off, school holidays and other important days in the school year.
#9. Keep Extra Supplies in the Car
I usually keep a supply of water and popcorn in my car. That way if any child forgets their drink or snack for either school or after-school activities you at least have a stock on hand for them to grab.
My girls both swim so I also keep togs and a towel in there too. It is much better to just have to run to the car than back home again at 6.30am when they forgot to pack their swim bags! So if your child has an after-school activity keep an extra supply of what they may need for days when they forget.
#10. Spray All Heads Before School
Most children will not get through their school years without falling victim to head lice. Before they start or go back to school, talk to them about the importance of keeping long hair tied up and to keep their heads away from their friends. Head lice are not fussy about whose head they end up on, they can’t fly or jump but can walk between heads.
By spraying a solution of tea tree oil and water onto hair, it can help to repel head lice. So fill a spray bottle with a mix of tea tree oil and water and spritz each chid’s head before they leave in the morning.
To create your tea tree lice prevention solution
- Mix 3 to 4 drops of tea tree oil into a spray bottle full of water
- Shake well to combine
- Spray your child’s head with the mix and brush it through to ensure each strand is coated.
Do test an area of skin before you start the spray routine to ensure your child is no allergic to tea tree oil.
Over to you now, do you have any clever back to school hacks that you can share with us? Please leave them in the comments box below.