Let’s talk about the vibe of your house on a Monday morning. Is it hectic? Or calm? My guess is that the start of your week reflects whether or not you’ve had the time to prep over the weekend. If you have a few minutes to meal plan, help ensure the kids are caught up on homework and that outfits are chosen for the week ahead, your Monday morning feels like a breeze compared to the alternative.
I’ve written about helping your kids get more organized before, but wanted to take school organization one step further now that we are into the second half of the school year! I reached out to one of the most organized moms I know, Stephanie Starkey with My Greige House, to collaborate on this post. Follow her, you’ll be so inspired by her ideas for cleaning + organization.
So let’s get to it! We wanted to share a few tips + tricks to keep your family ahead of schedule and on top of homework. It doesn’t have to be something that only happens in your dream world - I promise you!
Keep Your Space Inspired. Homework + studying typically falls into two categories: challenging or not challenging enough. Don’t let your dedicated space for studying and homework detract from the task at hand. Here is how to create a space that gives a little nudge of inspiration for the kiddos.
1. A dedicated spot. A quiet, undisturbed area is ideal for getting kids in the homework zone. Sometimes this is a home office and sometimes it is at the kitchen table. By keeping it consistent, it tells their brains it’s time to get down to business.
2. Calendars. The school lunch calendar, an after-school activities calendar or just a list of upcoming projects, helps keep everyone future-focused! It also prevents letting items and events slip off the radar.
3. Pull out the inspiration. An inexpensive cork board hung or leaned over a desk is ideal. Add a few inspirational quotes, study tips, or maybe a few A+ papers and you have the beginnings of an inspired space.
Design a Command Center and Keep the Right Supplies On Hand. Is there anything better than fresh school supplies? Regardless if you homeschool or send your kids to traditional school, having the right supplies easily accessible helps to ensure there are no avoidable hang-ups that impact a study session.
1. A Command Center. A central location is key to keeping the homework train on the tracks. It’s a place to house all the essentials: stapler, pens and pencils, glue, highlighters, Post-its, and a calculator. Also, having a command center with essentials cuts down on certain supplies being conveniently “forgotten” at school.
2. Supplemental Supplies. If your little one is knee-deep in multiplication, make sure you have all their flashcards in one spot. Summer reading list books, rulers and protractors, and SAT vocab cards should have their own home as well.
3. Storage + Paper Management. Plastic bins, 3-ring binders, and folders are a few great tools to deal with the onslaught of paper that comes your way during the school year. Add tabs to sort items by category. Perhaps the following broad categories would work for your student: Due Today, Due This Week, Completed.
Take the Pain out of Getting Ready. Getting kids ready for school isn’t the easiest of feats. A few simple solutions, include:
1. A School Lunch or Snack Prep Station. Applesauce, cheese and other grab and go items are great for stuffing into lunch boxes when mornings are hectic. Chopped vegetables and sliced fruits pair well with a sandwich or soup if your running low on energy or time. Take a few minutes on Sunday to pre-bag snacks so they are ready to grab throughout the week.
2. A school clothes organizer. I mentioned this tip in my last post, but a canvas hanging organizer (Crate & Barrel | $20) is a life saver for busy moms and picky kids. Getting your child to pick out what they are going to wear in advance will save countless hours in the morning.
3. All the stuff. Backpacks, instruments and winter hats and gloves should be housed together to make getting out the door quick and easy.
Setting your kids up to succeed is important. I hope the above tips help take the guesswork out of getting them ready to tackle the rest of the school year (and keep your sanity at bay).