It’s already that time of year again. It may feel like school just ended, but before you know it school will be back in session. Depending on where you live, school may start in August or September, but it helps to be prepared no matter what. The summer holiday can simultaneously feel both long and short, but don’t let the first day back to school sneak up on you! Here are a few ways you can make sure you’re prepared for the upcoming school year.
Stock Up on Supplies… Early
There’s nothing like going to the store the day before, or even the day of, the first day of school and finding nothing on your child’s school supply list. Depending on how old your child is and how their school works, some kids receive school supply lists at different times. Usually, elementary schools assign classes the year before and provide children with supply lists and summer reading assignments before the summer even begins. It helps to tackle these lists as soon as possible, especially since many of the things you need will be in short supply the closer it gets to the first day of class.
But not everyone has the luxury of knowing what to get beforehand. Many kids do not receive supply lists until their first day of school, which is more common in middle or high schools. In this case, you can still make sure you’re prepared. Get the basics as soon as possible, or stock up on things like loose-leaf, binders, notebooks, pens, and pencils during the year – especially when you see them on sale. You can always store these go-to items away until they are needed. Items like these will not go to waste, either, even if you’re child doesn’t need them. You can repurpose binders for recipes, notebooks for to-do lists, or you can always donate your excess supplies to those in need.
Plan a Wardrobe
Whether your child still needs help dressing or they are old enough to dress themselves, it helps to have some go-to outfits ready. The first week or so back to school is bound to be hectic, and getting back into that morning routine can be difficult to master at first. Having some outfits planned in advance can at least make getting dressed in the morning much easier and can help save time.
At the end of the summer, take a look at your child’s clothing, even stuff that may be put away for winter. Take an inventory of the things they have, things they need, and things that may need to be replaced. Items like winter coats and boots are cheaper in the summer when many stores are getting rid of the years’ stock with major sales before they launch their official “back to school” deals. Parents can easily score expensive necessities like coats and jackets before they’re ever needed, and they can be put away until the weather changes, too.
For older kids, planning a wardrobe may require some patience. Kids in middle school and high school may be more interested in keeping up with trends and sometimes the latest back-to-school or fall styles aren’t obvious until that time of year comes around. For kids looking to be cool, parents can still stock up on basics early on so they can pick a few choice pieces once the new seasons’ looks debut.
Even if school itself is still a few weeks off, it may help to begin thinking about what kind of lunches you can pack for the new school year. Now is the time to try new things and begin making certain things so you can get an idea of what your child will want to eat, as well as how long it takes to prepare, so you can easily add lunch prep to your back-to-school schedule.
Make sure your child has a place to do homework and get their assignments done. For kids with summer reading assignments and other projects, it helps to have a place for them to do this work where they can easily continue to do homework once school comes around. For kids without summer work, having a space for writing or crafts can help get kids used to working in a particular space and doing a certain kind of activity.
Having a designated space to do schoolwork is also helpful because you don’t want to be scrambling come the first week of school to find a place for your child to get stuff done. It helps if you don’t have to clear off a cluttered table or create a makeshift corner in a room for homework at the last minute, and it may contribute to putting things off early.
Do Your Own Homework
Parents should look into what their child’s upcoming curriculum will look like. This way, parents know what to expect in terms of workload, subject matter, and they can make sure there kids are prepared for anything that may come their way. Look at whether your child will be taking any standardized tests or will need to complete any big projects. If your child struggled with a particular subject the previous year, you may want to consider getting a tutor or taking advantage of summer library programs before school starts up again. It also helps to look into after-school and library programs that will be offered during the school year, too, so you can work in any extra activities your child may need or want to participate in to your s