The start of the school year can be a hectic time. With a million things to do at once, it can feel overwhelming and easy to forget important stuff. Which is why I created this back-to-school checklist for parents.
This checklist makes it easy to cut through the chaos and gather needed school supplies, organize your home, and cross off your to-do list so you can have a stress-free start to the school year.
Back-to-School Checklist For Parents PDF
The checklist comes in 2 different styles (rainbow and blue/yellow). In order to make it as clear and easy as possible to follow, it’s organized into the following 6 sections:
1. School Bag
This entails tasks that will get your kid’s backpack ready for the first day of school, whether buying supplies or preparing supplies you already have. This includes:
- Buy or gather Backpack
- Buy or gather lunch bag
- Wash last year’s backpack and lunch bags (if still used)
- Label backpack & lunch bags
- Ice packs for lunches
- Get sandwich bags and/or containers
- Water bottle
- Spare change of clothes
For clothes, this is a basic list of items you will need to purchase or gather to get ready for the school year. Since my kids are always growing, I like to get a few outfits for the start of the year (and more when the weather turns colder) and a new pair of shoes.
- Shorts or skirts
- Hair ties
- Raincoat & umbrella
My favorite place to grab clothes for back-to-school shopping is Primary, as the clothes are adorable, high quality (hello hand-me-downs) and all go together really well.
(Seriously, the best leggings ever)
3. School Supplies
When it comes to school supplies, it’s more about what supplies are required by your kid’s class. Which can depend on the school, grade, and teacher.
So your to-do tasks include:
- Get list from school
- Purchase needed supplies
- Gather in bag to take to school for meet the teacher if possible
PRO TIP: If you have a meet-the-teacher day before the start of school, it’s a GREAT time to take the bag of supplies so your kiddo doesn’t have to haul it in on the first day of school.
4. Daily Routines
Establishing your morning and bedtime routines make the back-to-school transition seamless. So your tasks are to:
- Pick appropriate bedtime
- Create bedtime routine
- Pick appropriate wake-up time
- Create a great morning routine
For a smoother transition, I recommend gradually transitioning to the new bedtime and wake up time during the week or two before school starts.
5. Meal Prep
While this may seem like a strange addition for a back-to-school checklist, the truth is that preparing for some easy meals will make the start of the school year much easier.
Specifically, breakfast foods and packed lunch food items. Here’s what I recommend:
- Buy easy breakfast foods (ex granola bars, cereal etc)
- Meal prep breakfast foods (These meal-prep breakfast recipes make our mornings soooo much easier)
- Buy foods for lunches (here’s extra tips to make packing healthy lunches easy)
- Get snack foods
And lastly, there are the various other things that need to get done in order to prepare for the school year. These include:
- Download & print school year calendar (check school or district website)
- Write important dates in planner/calendar using the calendar
- Get hair cut
- Arrange after school care (if necessary)
- Teach kids your mobile number
- Organize space for backpacks (I love hooks either in a mudroom situation or the garage–like our old setup pictured below)
- Organize area for school paperwork
***Note there are also extra spaces under each section for things specific to your situation.***
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USING THE CHECKLIST TO PREPAE FOR BACK TO SCHOOL
To download the fee printable back-to-school checklists, click the link below and sign up. The printables will be sent straight to your inbox.
If you have multiple children, I recommend printing out one checklist for each child. Because the truth is you need to go through the steps for each child to get them prepared for school.
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