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Blog: The Simplified Home
The Organized Student - Kids, Backpacks and Papers, Oh My!

I'm a busy mom with school-aged kids, so it goes without saying that we experience hectic school day mornings. If your mornings are chaotic like ours, follow these get-organized tips to ensure a smooth to and from school routine.
  • Make mornings flow smoothly by getting everything ready the night before.
  • Have school bags packed and placed by the door and tomorrow's outfits laid out.
  • Organize your kid's departure and arrival spot (I call this the launching and landing pad). Declare a home for backpacks close to the door they leave and arrive. Install hooks at a kid-friendly height. My kids have a square wicker basket close to the door that they enter and leave for school where their backpacks go and other school related items. We place everything that needs to go to school in that basket. When they get home, everything, including shoes get placed there so they don't get strewn all over the house.
  • Keep school shoes by the door to eliminate the mad morning rush to find two matching shoes (this also cuts down on cleaning since kids leave dirty shoes at the door when lunchboxthey come in)
  • Pre-pack the non-perishable parts of school lunches, so you can simply pop in a sandwich in the morning. Prepare for breakfast the night before by getting out cereal bowls and cups.
  • Create a Kids' Morning Routine checklist so no essential task gets overlooked, like forgetting to brush teeth or comb hair, and post it on the fridge and/or bathroom mirror.
  • Likewise, create an "Out the Door" list of items they need to take to school, and post it on or near the exit door. Include items like homework, lunch, library books, gym shoes, instruments. Include the time they need to be downstairs for breakfast and when they need to exit the house to meet the bus. This builds their time management skills rather than just waiting for your yelling "the bus is coming" to prompt them. I've included a  sample checklist that I created for my oldest daughter when she entered first grade. This made a huge improvement in her ability to stay focused and on task in the morning.
clockPlace a clock in strategic locations in your children's morning routine , like the bathroom, kitchen and their bedroom. Both my daughters have missed the bus at least once through the year by losing track of time while primping in the bathroom when there was no clock in sight.
After we adopted these strategies in our home, our mornings were much less chaotic. And my kids haven't missed the bus since and gone are the days of mid-morning phone calls from a frantic child begging me to bring their homework or packed lunch they left at home.
To learn more family management strategies like this, my
Home Organization Secrets for Busy Moms ebook is now on sale for $9.99 and can be immediately downloaded.
My Daughter's Morning Schedule (in 1st grade)
Upstairs: Wake up at 7:00am
        Get dressed ...
  • Put on clean underpants
  • Shirt & pants
  • Socks - to match outfit
  • Shoes - to match outfit
  • Brush teeth & tongue
  • Comb hair
** 30-45 minutes to get dressed - be ready to come downstairs by 7:45am **
Downstairs: be downstairs by 7:45am
  • Come downstairs to kitchen to eat breakfast
  • Check backpack to be sure everything has been put in
  • Put on coat, gloves, hat
  • Walk out door for bus at 8:05am

posted on: 11/3/2009 11:05:29 PM by Janet Nusbaum, The Organizing Genie
category: Homes

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The Simplified Home

by Janet Nusbaum, The Organizing Genie

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About Janet:

Janet Nusbaum creates calm out of chaos, and loves bringing serenity and order to overwhelmed households, cluttered offices, frazzled parents, and transitioning seniors and families. Janet, President of Simplified Spaces & The Simplified Home, is an Organizing Consultant, Senior Move Manager, Author and Speaker.

She is the author of "Mom, Can I Help Around the House?" A Simple, Step-by-Step System for Teaching Your Children Life-Long Skills for Pitching-In & Picking-up".

She is a proud member: National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) & National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization (NSGCD)

Visit our blog - www.TheOrganizingGenie.com, and sign-up to receive our special report "SHELF LIFE OF 75 COMMON HOUSEHOLD ITEMS. Use this report to decide what to keep and what to toss ... then TAKE ACTION!!

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