Are school mornings hectic and stressful? Do the evenings fly by in a blur? Whether they’re in kindergarten or fifth grade, helping your children stay organized will help to get you out the door in the morning and leave more time for family fun at home in the evening.
Here are a few organizational strategies you can use to get them better structured:
- Organization for any family starts with a solid daily routine. This will help things to run smoothly once kids come home from school. Scheduling TV time, homework, dinner and a consistent bedtime will help the evenings move along like clockwork rather than chaos.
- Checklists may be helpful in keeping kids on track with the family routine. Allowing them to check off what they have accomplished gives them ownership and increases their independence.
- As the daily routine of the school year sets in, your child may require reminders to look through their backpack for any important papers to give you, assignments for the day, or upcoming school events. Building this process into the after school routine will help everyone stay on the same page and up-to-date with what needs to be completed.
- Establish a designated area for backpacks, lunch boxes, show-and-tell items and other school supplies. An area close to the door will help your grade school student remember all of their supplies for the day’s events.
- Help your student establish an organizational system for school. Binders with folders for each class or a labeled accordion-style folder will help them complete homework and meet deadlines. This strategy will stick with them for years to come.
- Create an area for your child to complete homework that is free from too many distractions and allows for concentration and focused completion of homework and school projects. Making pencils, paper, and other necessary supplies easily accessible will help them to complete their assignments in a timelier manner.
- If your child resists sitting down to complete their homework or becomes fidgety after sitting for too long, it may help to set a timer (5 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes) and when it goes off give them a movement break. This provides an end point and may help them focus; giving your child a break during homework time is also helpful in keeping them motivated and on task.
- Talk with your child’s teacher to identify what organizational strategies they will be using in the classroom in order to promote consistency at home.
- Help your student use a daily planner to keep track of assignments given each day in school. Making a bulleted list for each class may remind them to fill out their planner each day.
- Help your student to break down long-term projects into more manageable steps. This skill will prevent them from waiting until the last minute to complete the project, and will be beneficial into middle and high school.
- Reviewing your child’s homework and recognizing their effort and accomplishments will motivate them to continue working hard.