Back to School: Student Organizing

Student Organizing


There are really no classes that teach organizing to your student.  Teachers will assign ways to organize a notebook or keep up with papers in a way they think will work for your student. But organizing styles vary.  Here are some ways to help your middle and high school student get organized for school.

  • Take a trip to a local retailer to talk about the planners that are available. Most students need a week at a glance planner. It can be a medium or large size, preferably spiral bound to fully open, and with an array of spaces to write in assignments.  Have your student talk through how they will use the planner, how it will fit in their backpack, and how quickly they can get it out to write in their assignments.  Writing down each assignment is a critical factor in getting homework done.   If your student is dismisses the idea of a planner, you can start with an open pad of paper or even index cards.  Students need to write stuff down.
  • Start talking about times to start and end homework.  Our students are busy and have a lot on their plate. Talk about how long does it take to do homework.   Most students do best with a short break before starting homework and knowing to finish by a certain time.  Having time on the weekend is important for projects and getting a little ahead each week. 
  • Set up a space for homework that promotes productivity.  The dining room is a great spot to work because there are few distractions.  Stock a caddy with the tools needed, like pens, stapler, scissors, index cards and tape.
  • Establish a homework folder.  This is the one place all homework goes to when assigned and ends up in when completed.  Having a single spot to put any and all homework and notes makes it easy to find and turn in assignments.
  • Kids are overwhelmed by paper too.  Set up one notebook that holds all the subjects.  It’s easier to keep up with one notebook than seven. In the notebook use tabbed slash pockets for each subject. Papers slip in and out easily without needing a hole punch.  Purchase a small file box and label tabbed hanging files with each subject.  Once a marking period, sit with your student while cleaning out from the notebook to the file.

What strategies does your student use to organize?

Back to School: Organizing Your Kids Clothes


back to school organizing your kids' clothes

It’s just a few weeks before school starts and your kids are still in shorts and tee shirts.  The drawers in their rooms are overflowing with sizes ranging from too small to too big. And you have just returned from purchasing school clothes for this year.  It’s clothes chaos!  Follow these simple steps to get your kids clothes ready for back to school.

  • Set a side a two hour time block to work in each child’s space.  Sort through all the clothes and keep only what fits in the drawers or closet.  Keep the other sizes in bins marked by size, gender, and season.  These can be stored in the attic and stacked.  Mark the bins well, on the top, side and front, so you know what is what.  Most of the time just you do the sorting, not the kids, just to expedite the process.  Use a bin no larger than 66 quart just so you can easily move it once it is filled with clothes.  Some people prefer to use space bags to store clothes under the kids’ beds too.  Remember to keep only what is in prime condition.  Yucky or torn clothes should be donated as rags.  
  • Decide what access you want your kids to have to clothes. It’s easiest for them to dress themselves when they can easily reach what is acceptable school attire. Hang the party dresses, extra jackets or too short shorts in a less accessible spot.   If you have just a long hang section in their closet, create a second hanging shelf with a double hang closet rod. Another great tool is the 6 shelf hanging system.  It’s easy to see and access for everyone.  If you use a dresser, be sure the drawers easily glide in and out for your kids to get in there easily.
  • Place the clothes in the best spots and then label the shelf or drawer.  It is so much easier for everyone with labeling! Dad, Mom, kids, and helpers all know where the laundry goes when it is ready to put away.
  • Make laundry easy with a divided sorter. Slots can be darks, lights, towels or kids, adults, dry clean.  Place the sorter where everyone can drop their clothes in easily.
  • As the seasons change, take an hour to remove and store the clothes you are keeping for the next child.   Grab a bin and keep your clothes storage system up to date.
  • Have your kids lay their clothes out the night before. It eliminates one more thing to do in the morning.  They can keep their jammies under their pillow and quickly get ready each day.

organizing your kids' clothes

What ways do you make organizing your kids’ clothes easier?





Back to School: Organize your School Supplies

Back to School


Back to school sales are everywhere at this time of year.  Most families have a large supply of items often spread out around the house.  Organizing your supplies saves you money and time.

  • Get started by corralling all your supplies.  Supplies may be hiding in various spots, including your kids’ rooms, the office or the kitchen. Gather these together to assess what you have.  You may have a glut of lined paper and not even know.  
  • Decide on a common location to house your supplies.  The location should be easy access for your kids so they can check and see when they need something.  Great spots to keep supplies are an office area, a secondary or storage off the kitchen.  With a central location, you can also check throughout the year on what to purchase.
  • Your storage location dictates your organizing strategy and tools.  Some ideas depending on your space include a 3 drawer sterilite bin, stacked shoebox bins, cute stacking boxes or a back of the door shoe organizer.  Stock your kids’ back packs too including tools in one part of their backpacks or a zipper case.
  • Be sure to label each category so that everyone knows where to get and return the supplies.



Organizing school supplies

Routines make Back To School So Easy!

back to school routines


Back to school so soon! Get in the Back to School Groove with these simple routines. This article is featured on Organize to Revitalize.

Back To School Organize your Homework Station


back to school homework station

Back to school means time for homework time! It’s the least favorite time of day for moms, dads, and kids.  Having a great spot organized for homework makes it easier to get this job done. Easy to access supplies helps your child stay focused and on task.   Will one of these stations will help you and your child be more efficient and effective?

  • Remember when you were in school and did your homework in your room? How much did you accomplish? Have an honest discussion with your child about doing homework in this space and assess if this works well.  Stock a small sterilite 3 drawer desk top container with supplies like tape, scissors, and mini stapler in one drawer, pens and highlighters in one drawer, and pencils and colored pencils in a drawer.  
  • Dining rooms are a great place for homework.  It is just one step away when you are making dinner if you need to answer a question. Your child can hear the sounds around the house but still work in a quiet environment.  Stock a small utensil caddy with supplies. The caddy can be moved during dinner time.
  • Multiple kids doing homework at the same time? Place a long table against an available wall, place cork boards on the wall facing each child’s place, and place a shoebox with supplies for each child with each chair.
  • Have a starting time for homework.  A little time off and a protein based snack are a good break before getting started.  The earlier your child starts, the easier it is to get homework done.
  • Timers help kids get started on their homework.  Help your child get started or get finished using a clock faced timer.  Set the timer for 15 – 20 minutes.  If your child is working when the timer rings, then just keep going with homework. If not, have your child take a 5 minute break, walk around, get a drink, and then reset the timer and work again.
  • After homework is complete, be sure you see your child return the homework to a homework folder and pack the backpack.  This prevents losing completed homework!


homework and organizing