Do you ever wonder if you do the Back to School thing “right”? I mean, yes, we probably all got our children to school on the first day and likely most of them were even delivered to the school where they were registered. (If not, please share the story!)
But what about the other stuff? The stuff that separates the men from the boys – or in this case the good moms from the, well, no need to really go there…
Back to School Prep
Personally, I think that if the Back to School Fairy
existed was handing out grades, I’d probably get a solid B- or C.
I do an acceptable job when it comes to getting everyone off to a good start, but I’m sure I could do better. For example, this year I:
- Took the kids for free hair cuts at JC Penneys.
- Bought them each a back to school outfit while there. (Super cute and affordable clothes – that skirt on the little one? Only $5!)
- Set up individual “homework boxes” with the school supplies they’ll need to do homework – pencils, paper, glue, markers, etc.
Nope, got nothin. That’s pretty much all I did.
(By the way, through the end of August you can round up your purchase at the JC Penney’s register to benefit Boys and Girls Club of America. I highly encourage you to say yes when they ask you. The few cents you’ll add to your bill goes a long way toward helping other kids.)
Get an A+ in Back to School
I have to admit that this B-/C grade I’m scraping by with kinda bugs me. I really want my kids to succeed in school and feel like just managing Back to School isn’t good enough.
School is important for the social and academic skills our kids will learn, but also for the study habits, work ethic and attitude toward learning that they’ll develop. I want an A for them, which means I want to raise the bar on my Back to School preparation.
The Boys and Girls Club has downloadable tip sheets full of great ideas on how to help your kids succeed. I was so excited to see my homework box idea on one of the lists! But there are a ton of other ideas that I haven’t implemented and think are worth adding, such as:
- Create a quiet space to do homework.
- Help my kids set goals.
- Encourage kids to write to-do lists.
- Develop a family calendar.
- Do adult homework (computer, reading, etc.) when the kids are doing homework.
Although my kids aren’t quite old enough, there are tips for handling middle and high school kids as well as preparing for college too.
Do you have any great Back to School ideas? I’d love to hear them.
Donating School Supplies
One of my other Back to School traditions is making sure to buy extra school supplies to donate. This time of year Office Depot makes it easy by having a new penny school supply deal each week. I stop on my way to work and stock up on the max allowed to purchase and put them aside to donate. It only takes a few stops like that to get a box full.
In years past, I’ve given them to Stuff for Students. This year I gave them to the front office of my kids’ school. I was astonished by how grateful the staff was – apparently even in our fairly well off neighborhood, there are still a lot of families who struggle to afford new school supplies for their kids.
If you’d like to help, the Boys and Girls Club have teamed up with Disney to create the Tools for Back to School initiative. It’s a pop-quiz style game, where supplies are donated to the Boys and Girls Club for every correct answer you score. Every kid deserves to have the basics they need to learn, don’t you think? I encourage you to play the game and ask your friends and family to play a round too -takes less than 2 minutes, honest.
Disclosure: I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Boys and Girls Club. I received a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.