Children's Development

Back-to-School Checklist

As many students head back to the classroom, let’s take a look at 10 things that can help your back to school transition run smoothly.

1. A Quick Check-In

Discuss hopes and feelings about for the year ahead. How are the kiddos feeling about going back to school? Excited, apprehensive? Check in with students and parents too!

2. Get Organized

Organize backpacks and supplies to help the mornings run smoothly. Think about utilizing hooks or shelving.  Create a “drop space” for school items that keeps school stuff organized and easy to grab. Designate a basket or organizer near the door for school sneakers to avoid the morning shoe hunt.

3. Take Inventory

Locate backpacks and lunch kits if they’ve gone missing over the summer. Take stock of left over school supplies and items that can be reused for the new school year. Try on shoes and clothing to see if they still fit!

4. Be Prepared

Familiarize yourself with any new back to school protocols in your school district. Fill out necessary school forms and paperwork.

5. School Supplies

Review and purchase from teacher supply lists. Make sure that your kiddos are set up for success with all the tools they need for the school year.

6.  Back-to-School Check-Ups

Schedule school physicals, haircuts, and dental appointments.

7. Well-Balanced Meals and Snacks

The new school year not only means a new routine for kids, it’s also an organizational shift for parents. This gives you an opportunity to rethink ingrained habits and foster more healthful ones. Plan out what you’ll stock the fridge and pantry with. Include your kids in the process so that they can be excited to open those lunch bags!

8.   Introduce the New Routine

Whether you choose to drive or walk by school, a practice run can help prepare little ones for the new routine!

9. Help Set Effective and Attainable Goals

Set a goal for the new school year. Goals don’t need to be related to grades! Pick a book series to read, a new club to join, make a new friend, or be welcoming to a new student. Perhaps try to raise a hand everyday in class? You can help your child learn the skill of goal-setting, which is critical for developing minds.

10. Summer Reflection

Spend some time reflecting about the summer. What were your favorite moments? Look at pictures and reminisce. Share the highlights of the past few months.

Ease back into the schedule at your own pace. After over of year of modified learning schedules there may be an adjustment period. It can take time to build up educational stamina. If needed, wait a few weeks to start afterschool sports and activities. Whether you are learning from home or in person this year, wishing you all the best as you return to school. Here’s to a successful and happy school year!

Stephanie Standley M. Ed. is a mom, educator, writer, and outdoor enthusiast. She received her undergraduate degrees in Sociology and Psychology as well as a Master of Education-Literacy from the University of San Diego. Stephanie has 12+ years of classroom experience as a teacher and currently supports students in Special Education. She is inspired to use evidence-based practices to educate children in creative and engaging ways.