Kathy’s Home & Garden Tips – Back to School Time!

Wow, summer really went by fast! It seems like just a few weeks ago it was Fourth of July. While the schools in Chicago don’t start until after Labor Day, most of the suburban schools will be starting in the next few weeks. These tips will be helpful whether your kids are just starting out or are in middle or high school.

Kids love routine. Start your morning “before school” rituals a week before school starts. It really gets the kids into a schedule and when the first day comes, it’s already routine. Of course, this starts the night before. Have everything ready the night before and when I say everything, I mean everything. Complete outfit from head to toe including shoes. How many times is the bus coming and you hear, “Where are my shoes?”. Make sure all homework assignments are done and stored in backpack. Have the lunches made in the fridge. Mornings are much calmer with 20 minutes of advance planning the evening before.

Make sure you allow enough time in the morning for a good breakfast. By good, I don’t mean big. Have protein, like an egg or some yogurt, toast or a breakfast bar, add some fruit, and you’re set. For your lunch, add a snack like chips, pretzels, or crackers. Along with some protein (like ham and cheese rollups) this will keep your kids full throughout the day.

Set up a quiet study area in your house away from TVs and other distractions. Stock with paper, pens, and other supplies. Study or do work in 35-minute blocks with 5 minutes break in between. Plan ahead for large assignments, doing some work every few days. For other subjects study some every day, you’ll be much more prepared when test time comes along.

To review, plan ahead, keep calm, and look forward to a great year in school!