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Staci Salazar is a mother of five kids, ranging in age from 4 to 18, who runs the blog 7 on a Shoestring where she provides lifestyle tips, her best money-saving finds, and lots of do-it-yourself projects to keep a household running smoothly! She's helping us get ready for the first day of school.


It is back-to-school season and time to discuss all that may entail!

From school clothes, shoes, supplies, lunches, and more, this is a busy season for parents and kids alike. Transitioning from summer mode back into that school mindset can be challenging for some.

Back-to-School Tips

Each family dynamic is different. There are several ages, school situations, and personalities to think about. Each circumstance means different ways to handle the back-to-school season. Alas, there are a handful of back-to-school tips that we have found useful in making the transition easier.

  • Establish a bedtime routine. Bedtimes are often forgotten or pushed back during the summer. As you near the first day of school, gradually get back on a set bedtime. Decrease the time the kids stay up each night until they are back in their established school routine. Plus, wake them up earlier each day until they are up every morning as they would be for school. This will make that first day, even the first week, easier on everyone.

  • Attend Meet-the-Teacher Night. Let your child meet the teacher they will be spending the next 180 days of school with. Walk around the school to familiarize yourself and your child with the layout of the building. Talk about how a typical day will go and ease any back-to-school jitters.

  • Shop early and strategically. Although there may be sales closer to the start of the academic year, pick up supplies throughout the summer to avoid crowds or lack of items you need. Take inventory of the supplies your family may still have from last year, so as to not purchase more than needed. Clothes and shoes should be an exception, though. Children do not stop growing over the summer and fashion trends change by the minute, so it may be best to do back-to-school clothes shopping as you near that first day.

  • Plan ahead. Layout clothes. Pack lunches. Prepare backpacks. Have a designated area where each child will keep their school items. Having everything in its place the night before a school day is much easier than frantically searching that next morning.

  • Get organized. Create a space the kids can use for homework. Have a family calendar to keep schedules all in one place and visible to everyone. Menu plan to make the family's evening ritual run smoother. Less disarray means less stress for everyone.


Whether this is your child's very first day of school or another 'first' of many, a little planning can go a long way. Listening and observing your children may be the best way to truly decide what works for your family. Enjoy this season of their life and embrace the last few days of summer.

What tips do you have for making going back to school easier for your family? Let us know below in the comments!

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Read or Share this story: http://www.wfaa.com/story/news/local/education/back-to-school/2014/08/25/14324720/