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Finding Your Calm: Navigating Back-to-School Season with Kids

Back to School, Back to School to prove to dad I'm not a fool. Sung in the tune of Adam Sandler in Billy Madison.

The transition from laid-back summer days to structured school routines can be overwhelming, especially when juggling multiple kids and all of their sports and school activities. However, it's essential to maintain a sense of calm amidst the chaos.

There are always all those memes and posts moms post on Instagram on the first day of school showing how excited they are to have the kids heading back to school. I like having my kids home ( for the most part ha. They did keep me very, very busy this summer with all of their sports and running around while trying to work)

This time of the year can always cause stress and anxiety on the kids and parents alike. Back to school shopping, kids worrying about school, waking up early again, maybe going to a new school, and getting back into their morning routines and school routine.

When we ease them back into their routines it can help. They also look to us on how we are acting and reacting to situations.

I like to take my kids out to eat one on one before school starts. Talk about what they are excited for this school year, what they are nervous about, and the whole mom talk I give them to be nice to everyone, don't gossip, don't let anyone feel left out, and if anyone is mean to you or makes you feel uncomfortable tell me. Be nice and kind but not a pushover, have boundaries and never let anyone make you feel uncomfortable.

They create their vision boards of what they want to accomplish this school year both at school, in their sports, and their personal lives.


Forbes estimates back to school spending for parents can exceed $1,000 on average.

  1. Look for coupons & deals

  2. Shopping checklists. Make lists so you don't overspend

  3. Tax Free shopping weekends

  4. School Supplies. It's too late now but for next year buy them at the end of the school year and don't wait until it's a week before.


1. Let your kids help grocery shop and pick out their food.

2. Lunch Box Note Ideas. I started leaving notes in their lunch boxes when they were in preschool and it has stuck. Something cute they can look forward to. Pinterest has a lot of ideas but it can be a simple Happy Monday. Today is going to be a great day and a great week.

3. Healthy Snacks. Have healthy snacks on hand when they get home from school. If you are like me it is all activities in the evening and on the go to and from.

4. Teach your kids how to make their own lunch.

Back to School Activities to Get Them Excited

  1. Decorate your house on the eve of the first day of school.

  2. Interview your kids. I did this last year for my podcast and I am going to do it again. Ask them what they are excited about, nervous about, what their favorite subject is, what career they want to be in when they are older, etc. They can write it down. It doesn't have to be recorded. This is fun and nice to have to look back on. My youngest when she was in preschool said she wanted to be a mom when she is older now she wants to be a mom and a surgeon. My oldest wanted to be a cartoon artist when she was little and now she wants to be an architect, interior designer, or an attorney.

  3. Have special breakfast on the first day of school.

  4. Go to the movies, drive in, or movie night at home before school starts.

  5. Look back at old pictures of your first day of school and tell them how it was for you.

  6. Read a back to school or going to school book.

Now that the kids are getting situated, what about us adults?

Here are some practical strategies to find your calm while getting kids ready to head back to school:

1. Plan Ahead and Establish Routines. Start by creating a comprehensive plan for the weeks leading up to the first day of school. Collaborate with your kids to outline a daily routine that encompasses everything from morning rituals to homework schedules. Having a clear plan in place helps reduce uncertainty and gives both you and your kids a sense of control.

2. Organize Supplies and Create a Functional Workspace. One major stressor during back-to-school season is scrambling to find the right school supplies at the last minute. Beat the rush by organizing everything your child needs beforehand. Create a designated workspace at home for homework and study sessions to help them feel focused and productive.

3. Encourage Open Communication. Make sure your kids know that they can always talk to you about their feelings, concerns, and excitement regarding the upcoming school year. Encouraging open communication helps build trust and ensures that you stay in tune with their emotions throughout the process.

4. Set Realistic Expectations. Be realistic about what you can achieve in a day. Avoid overloading yourself with numerous tasks and commitments. Setting achievable goals will prevent burnout and help maintain a sense of calm during this busy time.

5. Practice Mindfulness and Self-Care. Amidst the hustle, don't forget to take care of yourself. Engage in activities that help you unwind and stay centered, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga. Prioritize self-care to ensure you're better equipped to handle any challenges that arise.

6. Foster Independence in Your Kids. Encourage your children to take on age-appropriate responsibilities, such as packing their own school bags, organizing their belongings, or setting their alarm clocks. Fostering independence not only lightens your load but also empowers your kids to take charge of their responsibilities.

7. Embrace Flexibility. Despite meticulous planning, things may not always go as expected. Embrace flexibility and be prepared to adapt when unexpected situations arise. Remember, it's okay to make adjustments to your plans to accommodate the needs of your family.

8. Seek Support from Other Parents. Reach out to other parents who may be going through the same experience. Sharing tips, experiences, and struggles can provide a sense of camaraderie and support during this period. Both of my kids are in fall sports and have practices the same time. If you have other parents ask to car pool.

Heading back to school with kids can be a demanding time for parents, but it doesn't have to be overwhelming. By planning ahead, establishing routines, encouraging communication, and practicing self-care, you can find your calm amidst the back-to-school chaos. Embrace the journey and cherish the moments with your kids as they embark on another year of growth and learning. Most importantly let them know you are there for them. Always!

The more parents and adults in their lives are calm the kids will be calm. They feed off of our energy, be excited for them and they will be excited too. Remember, you've got this!

Here is to a happy, healthy, and safe school year!!!

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