5 Tips for Back-to-School Organizing

by Tina on August 5, 2010

Reading time: 3 – 4 minutes

What is on your To Do List as Summer is winding down and everyone’s beginning to think about school again?  Here are five tips to help you get ready for an organized, successful school year.

1. Summer Reading/Assignments – Check in with your child about where they are in completing their summer reading or other summer assignments. Encourage your child to finish the work sooner rather than later using a reward for completion (time with you/friends, a special outing, a particular item of clothing, etc.) or make it game/challenge (I bet you can’t finish this book in the next two days).

2. Inventory/Purchase Supplies – chances are you have quite a bit left over from last year… paper, pens, pencils, markers, notebooks/binders. Make a list of what you have on hand now that you can use for this year. Subtract those items from the school’s supply list. Now, go shopping with your reduced list, and save yourself some time and money.

3. Prepare Bookbag – After you have purchased the supplies, label everything with your child’s name/initials, and pack up that bookbag now. Relax and don’t think about that bookbag again until the first day of school.

4. School Calendar – If you don’t have a hard copy already, you can probably find it on the school’s website.  Take 15-30 minutes now, and add important dates to your personal/family calendar. Better yet, have your child do this for the family. Check for accuracy. This will save you time and frustration later about school holidays, report cards and parent/teacher conference dates.

5. Inventory/Purchase Clothes – There are some items your child can still wear from last year. Take 20 minutes with your child to zip through their closet/drawers. Have a Donate/Sell bag on hand to toss in those items that your child no longer wears. There are many families who will be counting on these donations to clothe their children this year. Or, you may be counting on the proceeds from these items to fund your school shopping trip this year. (In some cases, you may want to clip a small piece of fabric from a seam to use for matching colors/fabrics.) Make a list of what you can use for this year. Subtract those items from your clothes shopping list.

To make your shopping trip go more smoothly, before you leave the house, be really clear with your child about expectations: school dress code, clothes budget, number of shirts, pants, dresses, shoes, etc., and a time limit for shopping. The time limit encourages them to make sound and quick decisions and often minimizes arguing time. (We can talk more about this item now, but I need to remind you that you only have XX minutes left to shop for your school clothes. After that, the shopping is over. Don’t you want to move on?)

These five tips will have you well on your way to an organized, successful school year. You can do this.

“For God is not a God of disorder, but of peace.” I Corinthians 14:33 (New International Version)

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 Hello, my name is Tina Bonifacio, and I am a Professional Organizer working with residential and commercial clients in the greater Savannah, Georgia area. For more information, visit http://www.OrganizedByTina.com. Thanks for stopping by. You are welcome back anytime.


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