And... we’re back! It’s October already. I feel like school has only just started and yet I’m already buried under a mountain of school forms, homework, scout meetings and other fun. Yikes!
Before we all get crushed under the pressures of parenting kids through another school year, let’s regroup, breathe deeply (in… out… ahhh) and focus on Yourkidvid’s Top 5 Tips for A Successful School Year:
Get the troops in line!
I like to think of my 3 kids as a little army just waiting to be mobilized! We have a busy house and things run more smoothly when everyone pitches in to make beds, clear the table and otherwise help out. Aside from keeping mom sane, everyone helping out brings us closer as a family and has instilled a sense of responsibility and pride in my kids.
Every house with kids faces the daily dance of remembering when the library books are due, who needs to be dropped off at soccer practice and when it’s “Dress Up Like Your Favorite Dead President” day. OK, I made that last one up, but you get the point. The only way this works in my house is for me to choreograph the daily boogie with the help of a gloriously synced up electronic calendar. I have everyone on Google Calendar and send them meeting planners of what is happening when. Library books due every Monday? Recurring meeting planner to the rescue! School picture day? It’s on the calendar (with a reminder set to buzz him!) so my kiddo isn’t memorialized in a wrinkled t-shirt. Every time a new date arrives on a flyer or email, it’s off to the calendar I go!
One of the smartest things I ever did was to install a bunch of extra cabinets at 8-year-old eye level. These breakfront beauties serve as the nucleus around which my little mitochondrion revolve (excuse the cell analogy… we’ve been studying for a science test all week!). Where are your books? Did you look in your cabinet? Your backpack? Cabinet. Socks? Cabinet!!! While I’m a little nuts about keeping the chaos hidden behind pretty little doors which belie their contents, any spot in your house—or even one of those plastic storage tubs--can be designated as “The place for all of McKenzie’s stuff.” It will preserve your sanity.
Set it on auto-pilot!
I’m a firm believer that kids really like routine and do better when they know what’s coming next. In addition to having each of the kids organized with an electronic calendar, I’m really big on having a set routine that we follow and making sure I give them a heads up about any changes to the schedule.
Take time to enjoy it all!
Between working, being a mom, volunteering and trying to have a life, I’m always MOVING! However, the daily time I stop and share private time and a smile with each of my kids individually keeps me grounded. Before I go to sleep I think about what I am most grateful for... it is always those moments. Sharing giggles and hugs makes all of the craziness worthwhile. As the founder of Yourkidvid, a company centered on preserving family memories, I know how important it is to enjoy time together every day (warning: shameful pitch) and to capture those memories now so you can enjoy them for a lifetime.
-Teigue T, Co-Founder