Are you ready for a new school year? Some of you have probably already started, others will be later this month, and the rest of us won’t begin until September, but regardless of when you start, here are 3 things you can do to help make the new school year go better.
Make Note of What Needs Changed
Think through the past school year and make notes about what worked well and what were the struggles. For the things that worked well, make sure you continue them this year and have got your systems in place to continue them. For those things that weren’t working so well, how can you fix them this year? Also check in on your priorities for the year. They may have changed since last year. Here is an example from my own life:
Things that worked well for me last year
- Making my two youngest get all homework done on Saturday mornings before any fun. This made the weekend run much smoother. There were certainly exceptions, but for the most part this worked well.
- Calling and checking in every afternoon with the girls to make sure the TV was turned off and that family commitments and homework were started.
Things that could improve this year
- Breakfast – I need to do a better job of making sure they are eating a healthier breakfast. Any ideas for me? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter.
- Lunches – Have I ever mentioned how much I really don’t like making lunches? I need a system to make this go smoother. I found when I took the time to prepack snacks and wash fruit, it was easier for me in the mornings. Will try and get better at this by incorporating it into my tasks, daily routines, or maybe even giving the job to one of the kids.
- Grades & Homework – Keeping on top of grades and homework for the two youngest. Need to add reminders to my task list and daily routines.
Priorities for the school year
Making sure the two youngest read more, help Jennifer find and decide on a college, help Katie transition to be a college freshmen and help me get comfortable with not seeing her every day!
Sketch Out Your Ideal Daily Routine
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a piece of paper with time down the left column. Block out how you would like the flow of your day to go. Refer to it a couple times a day (morning, afternoon, evening) to help you stay focused. Here is an example to help (click on it to enlarge).
Get Serious About Using a Family Calendar
It will help you stay focused and less stressed. I highly recommend you go digital and if your kids are old enough teach them how to add things to it as well. If you want to stick with paper, try a planner rather than a wall calendar, so that it is portable.
Already use a family calendar? Then make sure you are getting the most out of it by including addresses and notes to help you stay organized. Here is an example from my calendar. Everything my husband and I need to know about this appointment is on the calendar.