Already exhausted just thinking about the back-to-school season? Late summer to-do lists can stretch on forever, but with a bit of organization, you can knock your list out in no time. Here are 7 tips to help you ease into back-to-school season and get off on the right foot.
Get back into a good sleep routine
One of the first things to go out the window on vacation is your regular sleep schedule. Give yourself at least a week to get back into your sleep routine. It’s a good idea to ease into it by going to bed and getting up about 15 minutes earlier every day.
Cut back on screen time
Have kids in your family who’ve been glued to their screens all summer long? With the Helix Fi app, you can get Active Time Details on each person, so it’s easier to help them gradually reduce their time online and get ready to go back to school.
The Helix Fi app also lets you schedule periods of inactivity, for example during bedtime hours. This feature disconnects certain devices from your home’s Wi-Fi network for set periods of time.
Refocus on good eating habits
In the summer, we often let ourselves go when it comes to diet: fast food, bigger portions, meals at all hours of the day… A week or two before you get back to your fall routine, plan for a more balanced menu. Why not hit up the local market to stock up on all the fresh fruits and veggies in season this time of year? And with all the great food discounts available this time of year, it’s also a great opportunity to stock your pantry with all the snacks you’ll need to fill up those lunchboxes.
Take stock of school supplies
Before you go out and buy new supplies, sort through those you already have. Many items can be recycled from year to year or used by another one of your kids. Not only is it good for the environment, but it will also save you some hard-earned cash at a time of year when expenses are high.
If you need new supplies, get the kids to help out with shopping. Letting them choose certain items that they like can get them more excited about going back to school.
Sort through clothes
Cool mornings are right around the corner. It’s better to take stock of fall wardrobes now than to wait until your kids are running out the door for school to discover that they’ve outgrown their sneakers. That way you’ll have time to go shopping for anything you need and get the best deals, rather than having to rush out and grab the first thing you see.
Organize home workspaces
Clear off or set up a homework nook in a nice quiet spot. It can be as simple as putting a desk in a child’s bedroom or setting up a special area in a common room. You can get your kids involved to gently help them come to terms with the return of schoolwork. Pro tip: Keep essential supplies (such as pencils, erasers, loose-leaf paper, and so on) handy.
While you’re at it, be sure to organize your entryway so everyone has everything they need to get ready and out the door in the morning.
Write down your household rules and schedule
Writing it all down will set your mind at ease. In addition to lightening your mental load, having your household schedule and rules in writing makes it easier to share information with the whole family. You can put up a calendar where people can write important events and reminders. If your children are young, illustrate the schedule using pictograms.
Ever heard of a family command centre? It’s where you keep all the important information about day-to-day family life, including the calendar, schedule of extracurricular activities, cafeteria or dinner menus, documents that need to be filled out and returned to school, a list of each person’s chores, and so on. It usually goes in a high-traffic area of the house, such as the entrance or kitchen.
Back to school, one step at a time
There’s no way around it: back-to-school season is a whirlwind. To reduce your stress, take everything one step at a time. It’s okay to stray a bit from routine from time to time, or even treat yourself and your family on Friday evenings in the first few weeks of school. If parents are relaxed, odds are that children will be too. Have a great back-to-school season!