Prepare for school without any of the craziness.
Believe it or not, back-to-school season is already upon us. In some parts of the country kids are already loading up on yellow school buses and starting new chapters of their academic lives. Which means that many working moms are currently experiencing the "morning madness" that comes with trying to prepare for work while also preparing children for school.
It may seem like the only way to get it all done stress-free is to wake up hours in advance, but there are plenty of simple parenting hacks that can save you time and help you start the school year organized. Here are some of the best hacks on Pinterest for a smooth and enjoyable first day of school:
1. Keep the bathroom organized.
There will be no questions about where the toiletries are with this simple solution. All you need is a labeled empty jars and your kids will have everything they need for an efficient trip to the bathroom before heading out in the morning.
2. Nail the first day picture.
Everybody loves the classic "first day of school" photo, but we don't all have the time or crafting skills to make a completely original sign from scratch. That's why it's perfectly fine to borrow from the Internet. Hey, you can even print out all of elementary school years in advance so you won't have to worry about it again next year.
3. Get your paperwork in check.
Now that the school year started, you are sure to be getting swamped with permission slips, hand-outs and notices from your kids. Create a stylish filing system to make sure you don't find yourself scrambling to find something important the morning before it is due.
4. Create the ultimate morning checklist.
Put everything you need on a checklist and make sure nobody leaves the house without a final check and approval. Because nobody wants to use their lunch break to drop a forgotten item off at school.
5. Get the family on the same page.
This family bulletin board keeps everything you need to know in one place. Post everything from soccer practices to lunch schedules to teacher contact information. And when your kids ask you a basic question, you can just point to the board.
6. Make snacks easy-to-assemble.
Prepare all of your non-refrigerated lunch items in advance and keep them ready at a moment's notice with this handy organizer. Just drop them in the lunch box and you're done. It's a great way to help little ones learn how to pack their own lunch—and it works for afternoon snacks as well.
7. Make school supply organization stations.
With this easy station, kids will never waste time looking for school supplies again. Put everything they need into a container (a divided shower caddy works well) and leave it on the table.
8. Turn leftovers into lunch.
Kill two birds with one stone by taking leftovers from the night before and packing them in a insulated thermos for a home-cooked hot lunch.
9. Keep track of extra-curricular activities.
If your family's schedule is getting out of hand, then try planning it out and posting it where everyone can see it. Now nobody has an excuse to forget about a practice or field trip.
10. Plan a week's worth of outfits.
Use this closet organizer to select all of your kids' school clothes in advance on Sunday and save yourself some time in the morning.
11. Make a one-stop spot for sporting goods.
Make sure no important gear gets lost or left behind with a designated sports storage section. Keep it stocked with everything your kids will need for gym class or practice after school.
12. Let your kid's teacher know you care.
It's never a bad idea to get on a teacher's good side. You may not have time for a lengthy chat with the teacher after dropping your kids off, but this sweet and simple craft will score you a great first impression. Plus, if your kids are old enough, you can make them do it or a similar project.
13. Stick to quick and easy breakfasts.
Every minute matters in the morning, so plan out breakfasts that are simple and can be made ahead of time. This banana and Nutella wrap fits the bill and will surely be a big hit with your kids.
14. Make a morning chore board.
This chart will help your kids understand exactly what they need to do before school in the morning. It also helps you keep an eye on what still needs to be done before they head off to school.
15. Prepare a locker kit.
Help your middle schooler out with a kit of all the locker essentials she may need while at school. It's much easier than her coming to you with a new request every single time she needs something.
Written by Joseph Barberio for Working Mother and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.