Back to School Published on August 14, 2016 Independent School Districts across the country are welcoming back students and getting ready for the fall semester. Here are some tips to make sure you’re prepared when your kiddos are back in session. Start Fresh Things accumulate over summer break when you’re trying to keep your children busy. Before school resumes, go through toys, outfits, and everything else and contribute them to a local refuge. You’ll be excited about buying back-to-school clothes when you can fit them into the dresser, and some schools will welcome used toys and educational materials to help supplement their classrooms or send home with kids who would benefit from them. Check Out Extracurricular Activities Maybe your child is going to school for the first time, or maybe they’re moving to a new school. Maybe they want a place to make new friends or release some energy. Check out the activities offered through the school or your county, or check out dance academies, gymnastic classes, or sport leagues available in your area. Create Calendar Central Back-to-school time, working parents, and then adding after-school activities can suddenly take over your calendar and have you going all over. Make sure you don’t forget anything with a family calendar. Your family can link up calendars with apps such as Google Calendar or Sunrise Calendar. You can even hang up a family calendar in a high-traffic room like the kitchen or mudroom so everyone can add their activities. Buy a Few Extra School Supplies There are families who don’t have the money to buy everything on a school supplies list, much less more; but if you are a family who does, buy a few additional boxes of Kleenexes or a few more packs of pencils. Take it from this mom, the teachers could seriously use it, but so could some of those adorable kiddos entering school who aren’t as lucky. Start Your School Year Schedule A couple weeks before school starts, have your family get into their school year routine. Dinner at 6:30, bath at 7:15, and to bed by 8:30 (depending on your children’s ages). Most kiddos have been foregoing a bedtime all summer and not eating on a schedule so it will be a better adjustment to try and ease the family back into a routine before school starts. Also, if your kid comes home and wants to immediately go to bed, don’t fret: kids, especially elementary school children, tend to be a little exhausted those first days back. Plan a Family Night With the family getting back onto a schedule, it’s easy to miss each other. Plan one evening a week to be a family night – no after-school activities, no neighbors, no late night at the office. Maybe it’s a Thursday night pizza dinner or a Monday game night. Make sure your family finds time to check-in with each other and bond.