Five Organizational Changes To Make NOW For Back To School

Five Organizational Changes To Make NOW For Back To School. I think most kids can get caught up enough in the excitement of shopping for Back To School swag, but the rude awakening of that first 6am alarm clock is brutal.  Making changes now can make the whole transition far less miserable.  (For me, anyway.)  Now that the school year crept up on us, we’re racing to make some important changes from the laissez-faire attitude of the summer.

Five Organizational Changes To Make NOW For Back To School


dont wanna go to bed

1.  Altering the sleep cycle.  (Also known as: “but, I don’t wanna go to bed!!”) Maybe your offspring head to dreamland at your request and wake up with a smile.  Mine do not.  They require gradual changes and reluctant acceptance that days are getting shorter and it’s time to revert to our Fall schedule of in bed by 9:00pm, up at 7:00am.  Most kids do have dramatically different schedules during the summer, what with camp, Daylight Savings Time and everyone wanting more time together.  I change schedules gradually, by half an hour or so until we’re back in School Mode.


family meeting

2.  Make a Plan of Battle for the week ahead:  The Todd and I got into the habit of prepping our morning radio show on Sunday afternoons, where we can look at the week ahead and discuss guests, celebrity interviews, any contesting and such.  School is the same way: we’re starting now with a family meeting every Sunday to go over any Dentist appointments, Lacrosse practice, book reports and such.   When we get into the school year, we’ll focus more on homework assignments, Room Mother responsibilities, field trips and all things educational.  It saves all kinds of nasty surprises mid-week.



3.  Create a workable scheduling system: if you’re tech-savvy and dig Google, their calendar program is the best I’ve seen online–and it’s free.  Each family member’s schedule is color-coordinated and inserted into the master plan.  Everyone can add and delete info as needed.  Click here to take a look.  For some people–including me–still need a clear paper-based schedule to eyeball.



4.  Create a Command Central: the picture above with an info board for each child brought tears of lust and envy to my eye.  There’s a place for papers to sign, homework to be checked off, backpacks to hang, calendars for every kid.  Genius.  Utter genius.  You can click here to see more of Delightful Order’s ideas.


homework space

5.  Create a workspace: I don’t know anyone with a house big enough to create a fabulous workstation for every child.  Even if that’s the kitchen counter, have a designated time with a bin nearby with study materials and such for each child to create a functional workspace free of tv, computer and other distractions.  Once their time is done, bin gets put back, I check off homework and backpacks are packed.




So, now I want your ideas: how do you wrangle all your sunburned, bug-bitten, crazy-with-their-freedom offspring back into school mode?  How do you organize everyone to keep you from going nuts?  What systems make your householdhold sane?  We have a $50.00 Office Max gift card to give away for one of your answers.  Suggest what works for you and you’re in the drawing.  We’ll pick a winner at random on Monday, August 31, 2015.

5 organizational changes to make for back to school


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20 responses to “Five Organizational Changes To Make NOW For Back To School”

  1. Ken Ohl says:

    They have there back packs and school supplies and school clothes all out and in sections of there bedroom all neatly organized in totes we purchased. Thankyou, Ken

  2. Randi S. says:

    One of the greatest stresses at back-to-school time is when your child tells you, right before they go to bed, that something is due TOMORROW! It’s a great idea to identify those possibilities ahead of time and prepare for the worst through creative organization.

    Poster due tomorrow? Keep several shades of posterboard on hand at home, along with markers, glue sticks, scrapbook paper, etc.

    Research paper rough draft due and you don’t have time to run to the store? Keep lined index cards on hand, along with copy paper and pens.

    “Oh, I forgot–I have to bring a treat tomorrow!”: Keep brownie and cookie mixes on hand specifically for such an event. Find out at the beginning of the school year if any of your child’s classmates have food allergies so you can select something that all kids can have.

    Find a birthday invitation in your child’s backpack and the party is TODAY? Keep several gifts on hand that can be given at a moment’s notice: $5 fast food gift cards, journals, funky socks, scrapbooking or art supplies, etc.–whatever you find on sale!

  3. Amber Smith says:

    Lists are crucial. I keep an ongoing list for school supplies and clothing needed and I also keep a list of allergy friendly snacks to pack in lunches so if I’m rushed in the morning I can just refer to it instead of taking time to think of something new.

  4. Kelly Freeman says:

    We have hooks by the front door to keep backpacks and coats. We also have a shelf for shoes, to keep them from being all over the house when it was time to leave. We also have hanging cubbies in the children’s closets. They can put their whole outfits for each day of the week so they don’t have to make that decision in the mornings when they are tired. Also, they include any accessories or underthings, as well. Now the trick is making sure to use the methods and reinforce the picking of the next week’s outfits on the weekend. So we aren’t perfect at it but at least we have a plan.

  5. […] our winner from the 5 Organizational Changes To Make Now For Back To School is Randi S.–who’ll be shopping with her $25.00 Office Max gift […]

  6. Randi S. says:

    Yay! Thank you so much! I could spend hours in office supply stores. I am so happy to have won!

  7. […]  But lay out the clothes for the next day.  Get all the papers and such signed for the kids.  There’s a good list of suggestions for getting everyone in the household on the same page if you need a […]

  8. […]  But lay out the clothes for the next day.  Get all the papers and such signed for the kids.  There’s a good list of suggestions for getting everyone in the household on the same page if you need a […]

  9. Mary Ann says:

    My suggestion…as a mom, don’t try take it all on yourself. Kids need to be responsible too and can help keep things organized. I was a working mom so he had to help out. I can say this since my son is 31 ys old. I was not the best at organization…wish I had access to all these great ideas!!

  10. Lark says:

    As a single mom of four that works full time, my suggestion is to find a plan that works form your family and stick with it. Trust me as cute and cool as the pictures above are….that’s not real life.

  11. laura cluff says:

    Call me old fashioned, but those calendars on the smartphones just don’t cut it. I get a cheapo pocket calendar and some colored pens. Every day… work in blue, school in purple, social activities in red, etc. Writing also helps me remember, and it doubles as a journal to look back… what did I do last week? And making lists in the task area is so rewarding when you get to cross something out!

  12. Kristina says:

    I bought sterilite 3 drawer carts (one cart per kid) to hold each kid’s papers as they come home from school. I put a milk crate (color of their choice) on top of each one to hold their backpacks and other misc stuff they might need for school. They each have their own dry-erase calendar for any special dates they want to mark. School clothes gets picked out the night before (part of their bedtime routine). And, finally, we made a book nook (tent) area in our family room to get them back into the swing of reading for a certain amount of time each day.

  13. Lisa Chambers says:

    CROCK POTS& WEEKEND MEAL PREPPING : Start with two crockpots, put the ingredients in at night for a Frittata in one and breakfast is a delightful symphony of smells to wake up to.In the other put dinner in that you have pre-prepped on the weekend and you have just eliminated a ton of what should we have to eat !

  14. Jean D. says:

    ALWAYS set out clothes, shoes, and backpacks the night before.

  15. Amanda Alvarado says:

    We only have one still in school so it’s pretty easy for us. We do homework first thing along with a snack ( unless she has karate right after we get out of work…only 1 day a week though). Then it’s dinner and karate (or vice versa), shower and bedtime. We always lay out clothes and get her backpack ready the night before. I pack her lunch in the morning and breakfast is free at school!

  16. Jean D. says:

    Shoes for the next day MUST be on the counter. How many times have you risked a tardy report while hunting under beds for that lost shoe?

  17. sheila k says:

    Organize lunches by creating a job chart, and have each child contribute to the lunch box line up according to his or her assigned duty for the day. Involve your children, thru discussion, about which food items will be purchased the coming week for lunches. This helps prepare children for the “real world” of choices and tasks.

  18. Renee says:

    Tackle homework right after snack. Pack lunches the night before. By the way, many of the replies on this post are 1-3 years old.

  19. John says:

    Put backpacks in the car the night before. Pick out outfits for the whole week using the cubbies in bedroom closets.

  20. emily s says:

    simple easy change-never go from one room to another without bringing something over to help clean up.

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