Last Minute Back-to-School Tips!

School’s back in session! Here are some last-minute tips to ease you back into the swing of things.

Child ID Cards: Back to school time is a good time to give our children a refresher course in safety, as between school activities and family vacations, they will be out and about more frequently. We discuss “stranger danger,” have them fingerprinted, and teach them what to do if they are lost or separated from a parent or other chaperone. An identification card is another way to help keep your children safe, and you make one right at home!

In addition to traveling, the cards come in handy in the event of an accident, or simply when your child is at a friend’s home or a party and wants to call you to see if they can stay an extra hour (they’ll have your number handy to give to their host).

The cards will have the basics of any ID, along with contact information for you and anyone else you choose to designate. Deb’s friend Darla at HeartWork Organizing brought this to our attention, and she especially likes to use these when she’s traveling. She devoted an entire post to child ID cards – with instructions – that you can read here. It’s a simple process of adding your information, printing and affixing a current photo, and laminating the card. She’s tried several templates in the past, and the one she recommends can be found here. Darla has a laminator at home, but don’t worry if you don’t have one, as many office supply stores can do the laminating for you.

You probably won’t find yourself in a situation where you need these cards, but they’re great to have on hand for peace of mind!

Family Hub/Master Calendar: Now that schedules from teachers, coaches, and advisers are coming home, it’s a good time to create that family hub or master calendar if you haven’t already.

In case you missed it, here’s Deb’s tutorial on family hubs and if you enjoy craft projects, you can make your own Post-It Note calendar!

Also, make sure that you stay up to date on schedules, permission slips, and flyers every day so they don’t pile up – throw away anything unnecessary or outdated!

Launch/Drop Zone: Just as handy as the family hub is a Launch/Drop Zone, a convenient place to store backpacks, footwear, sports bags, umbrellas and the like. Mud rooms, entryways and kitchens are good options for this zone.

Don’t Procrastinate: Do you have a procrastinator? Peter Banerjea from Lifehacker has four questions you can use to help get that project started – or finished – now!

  • What one thing can you do to get started (or resume)?
  • What are your three biggest priorities; for students this could be anything from a term paper to band rehearsal to preparing for a test.
  • How can you make this easier?
  • What will go wrong if you don’t do this now?

Lunches and Snacks: Many middle- and high-school students have their lunch breaks early in the day. Add after school activities to the mix, and you get some very hungry young people who will need a boost between lunch and dinner! Invest in reusable lunch containers like these from Rubbermaid, and you’ll have the flexibility to put together lunches from leftovers, sandwiches, and healthy, energy-packed healthy snacks for your scholar!

Set up a lunch making zone with everything you need to put lunches together, and the weekly meal plan for lunches. Also keep a lunch money jar for loose change and singles

Check It Off: Create routine checklists for morning, after school, and evening so nothing gets accidentally overlooked. Don’t forget to keep an emergency plan in your family hub!

For more great tips for back to school and more, follow The DeClutter Coach on Pinterest!