Slider by IWEBIX

10 Tips To Get Your Household Ready For the School Year

*Sponsored series. See Disclosures Below.

 

With three kids and two busy working parents in our house, the beginning of each school year requires a family management system to simplify school year logistics. Here are some tips we use to get our household ready:

 

1. Create an online calendar: The first thing I do each year is gather all of the school and activity calendars together and create a color-coded online family calendar. Because our teen and twin sons are so busy this year, I made separate calendars for each child and assigned them unique colors (I grouped my twin sons together because they go to many of the same activities). There are many calendar options including Microsoft Outlook, Google Calendar and Cozi.com.

 

2. Identify location friendly activities: With my busy work schedule, the only way to survive the school year is to find location-friendly afterschool activities. With some luck and lots of investigation, I discovered great programs close to home. For example, my kids are enjoying Karate lessons at the local dojo rather than the location two cities away attended by many of their friends.

 

3. Set up carpools: At the start of the school year it’s good to talk to other school parents as well as review class and afterschool activity directories to find other families close to your house for potential carpooling. This reduces my time spent on the road or my kids’ time spent on bikes traveling across town. For families requiring flexibility, it’s best to find carpool families who are similarly flexible.

 

4. Create weekly menus: For many families, of the most stressful things about the school year is meal planning.  Creating weekly menus can help streamline busy school weeks by using some weekend prep time to prepare ready to eat meals in the fridge. For nights when cooking or “re-heating” is out of the question, having a list of local restaurants that either have delivery or will carry out to curbside (such as California Pizza Kitchen) comes in handy .

 

Low on meal ideas? Luckily there are so many online recipe and food blogs that include recipes for every taste and level of cooking experience. I find it helpful to find a meal strategy that fits with our family schedule. For example, we like using a crockpot to cook food during the day that will be ready for mealtime.  Another option is finding budget friendly staples that we can bake in advance like beans & grains and then throw in difference ingredients to spice things up.

 

5. Develop digital shopping lists:  Once you have a weekly dinner and other meal requirement list (including kids’ lunch meals), the required food shopping can be greatly simplified by using a digital shopping list.  Tools such as One Note, EverNote and more can help you have your shopping list available on all the family devices.

 

6. Identify family chore lists: The start of the school year is a great time to review household chores and then identify those that are a good fit with your kid’s schedule.  For example, one of my 10 year old sons is a natural at moving laundry through the washer and dryer. Next step is to teach him to sort and fold clothing.

 

7. Establish well-stocked school work areas: The beginning of the school year is a great time to empty out the old, broken and worn down school supplies from last year and start fresh with new pencils, pens, paper and rulers  located near homework spaces. This will help to silence the “I can’t find a pencil” complaint!

 

8. Set up school year screen time limits: During the school year we have screen time limits to allow our kids to relax while prioritizing the completion of homework. Some families have no screen time during the week. We settled on somewhere in the middle, which means our kids get limited screen time only after they get their homework done.

 

9. Evaluate Assistive Tech: At the beginning of each year I talk with each of my kids to see if there is any ways we can help support their learning with technology. In the past this has included finding a dictation app to help with writing exercises or using other Assistive Learning Tools.

 

10. Update Household Technology:  Each year it seems we need to add some new technology or update our current computers to match our kid’s school needs. This year we needed to buy an extra printer to allow my teen access to print from his desk. We also realized that we needed the ability to do homework on the go, so having mobile WiFi has enabled us to complete assignments between activities on the road or work at the park on nice days and enjoy some fresh air.

 

What’s in your back to school preparation list?

 

Disclosure: This is a sponsored series. I received an AT&T Unite mobile hotspot as part of my sponsorship. My words are my own. I am happy to say that my AT&T Unite has enabled our family to have WiFi wherever we need to get work done. For more information, visit att.com/Unite or connect with WiFi Family powered by Netgear.

 

 

 

Copyright, Permissions & Disclaimer (i.e. Legal Stuff)

For permission to reprint or redistribute an individual post, contact the author through techmamas(at)gmail(dot)com. No posts may be redistributed without permission by their owners.

 

We disclaim:

  • any responsibility for comments from readers.
  • Techmamas shall not be liable for any direct or indirect damages arising out of use of this Weblog including product recommendations. You acknowledge that any reliance upon any advice, opinion, recommendation, statement or other information displayed or distributed through the TechMamas site is at your sole risk.

 
I signed the Blog With Integrity Pledge.
 
Disclosures & Relationships:
 
I get lots of pitches for products, accept some to take it for a test run – but only talk about the products I feel are relevant for families. That being said, all of my posts discussing products are my personal opinion only.
 
I disclose on the bottom of posts when relevant, such as if I received a product, part of sponsored campaigns or other important disclosures.  All my opinions are my own.
We will take down any comments that defame, abuse, harass, threaten, or otherwise violate the legal right of others.
 
LEGAL
Terms of Use for Techmamas Websites
 
This website, its content and other associated websites, and associated content that Techmamas (“Techmamas”) may operate from time to time (defined as “Techmamas Websites”) are protected, without limitation, by U.S. and foreign copyright, trademark, patent, and/or other proprietary rights and related laws, rules and regulations. By accessing the Techmamas Websites, you agree to the following terms and conditions. If you do not agree, you have no right or license to access the Techmamas Websites and you should not do so.
 
Techmamas reserves the right to update or modify the Terms of Use without advance notice by posting a revised Terms of Use to any of the Techmamas Websites. Visitors to the Techmamas Websites (“you”) can determine whether the Terms of Use has been modified since your last visit by checking the “Last updated” legend at the top of the Agreement. By using the Techmamas Websites, you agree to be bound by the version of the Terms of Use then in effect. Techmamas may deny service to you at any time, including in the event you do not adhere to the Terms of Use.
 
Ownership:
 
Unless otherwise indicated, the Techmamas Websites, are and will remain the sole property, intellectual or otherwise, with all rights reserved, of Techmamas or its authorized assigns, and its licensors or providers.
 
For permission to reprint, redistribute or syndicate an individual post or series of posts, contact Techmamas at techmamas@gmail.com. No content on the Techmamas Websites may be redistributed without permission by Techmamas.
 
Third Party Content:
 
In the event that Techmamas displays the works of third parties besides its individual writers on the Techmamas Websites, whether by permission or under the provisions of copyright laws, as may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, commonly referred to as the doctrine of “fair use,” the rights to such works remain the property of such third parties unless otherwise stated.
 
Some information made available on or through the Techmamas Websites are provided by third parties (such as advertisements, product information and other information) or other visitors to the Techmamas Websites (such information, “Third-Party Content”). The inclusion or appearance of Third-Party Content on the Techmamas Websites does not indicate any approval or endorsement by Techmamas. Techmamas is not responsible for, and hereby disclaims any and all liability that may arise from Third-Party Content.
 
The Techmamas Websites provide links to other websites and resources. Because Techmamas has no control over these sites and resources, you acknowledge and agree that Techmamas does not endorse and is not responsible or liable for any content, advertising, products, or other materials on or available from such sites or resources. Techmamas is providing these links to you only as a convenience. Techmamas has the right, but not the obligation, to block links from or to the Techmamas Websites at any time.
 
Use:
 
You are authorized to download one copy of the material on the Techmamas Websites on one computer for your personal, non-commercial use only. In doing so, you may not remove or in any way alter any trademark, copyright, or other proprietary notice. Except as allowed in the preceding paragraph, you may not modify, copy, distribute, republish, commercially exploit, or upload any of the material on the Techmamas Websites without prior, written consent from Techmamas. No intellectual property or other rights in and to the Techmamas Websites, other than the limited right to use set forth above, are transferred to you.
 
Disclaimer:
 
Comments or opinions expressed on the Techmamas Websites are those of their respective writers only. The outside views expressed and links to external websites do not represent the views of Techmamas, its management, or writers. TECHMAMAS MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES WITH RESPECT TO THE TECHMAMAS WEBSITES, WHICH ARE PROVIDED FOR USE “AS IS.” TECHMAMAS