Going back to school can be a stressful time for parents. With new classes, teachers, and lots of new homework, getting back into the swing of the semester can be difficult. There are many new things to learn and new schedules to get the hang of. So whether the school semester has just begun for you or you're getting close to the starting line, here are some tips to starting out the semester as smoothly as possible.
Clear Out All Old Paperwork
From the backpack to the desk, plenty of old tests and syllabi tend to pile up everywhere. To start the semester with a clear mind and make space for more work this upcoming semester, clear out all old tests, assignments, syllabi, and other paperwork. You can either recycle it or, if you like, keep previous work for study material or sentimental value. Buy some binders to keep it all neatly stored away.
Print Out Your Schedule
Having a printed schedule where everyone in the family can see it is the key to good time management. Once the class schedule is received, type it all up into a document and be sure to add any extracurricular activities and important assignments. Once this is all done, you can easily see the spaces in the schedules for homework and relaxing time. This helps manage your time and make sure all assignments are turned in on time.
Write Out Your Semester Goals
The perfect space to write out your goals for this semester is where you can see them every day- like your printed-out schedule! Writing out your goals helps create a vision in your mind of how you want your semester to turn out in the future. These goals can be anything from good grades, extracurricular achievement, or even just to enjoy school! This can also be a good bonding opportunity between parents and kids.
Buy your Workbooks Early
Buy all of your workbooks, textbooks, and folders in the first week of school. This gets all the buying out of the way and prevents any last-minute stresses later in the semester. Folders are also an excellent way to keep all handouts and assignments organized. Make sure to label every book, folder, and textbook to ensure that they can be quickly returned if they go missing.
Create a Homework Space
Many studies show how important your environment is for the activity you do. For
example, scientists recommend against watching TV in bed as it can prevent you from having a good night's sleep as your bed, usually asociated with sleeping, starts becoming a place for entertainment. The same applies to homework. Creating a designated area for homework can increase productivity and concentration.
Use A Whiteboard
Whiteboards are perfect for temporary to-do lists as well as working out homework problems. You can buy a small one to be kept in the homework space or a large one that mounts on the wall. These large whiteboards can also act as a designated area to keep track of household chores as well as homework assignments.
Go Through Clothes
Kids grow at an alarmingly quick pace. The absolute worst thing is getting ready for school and discovering that your clothes are getting small. Prevent this by going through your kid's closet, figuring outfits out beforehand, and checking that everything fits.
Create a Family Calendar
Just like how creating a schedule can help with individual time management, a family calendar can help you and your family find time to spend together. You can use a physical calendar, or online but be sure to input all school timetables, work, extracurricular activities, and homework time. This allows you to see the spaces in the semester to go out for a family meal or even a weekend away while still being mindful of your student's homework and test schedules.
Have a snack bin
Snack bins are perfect for throwing box lunches together or making available after-school snacks. Just take a large container, throw in some pre-packed snacks and fruit, and shake it all up. Some of my favorite snacks are Goldfish, Cuties, and Kind Bars!