Southern Mom Loves: The 15 Best Back to School Hacks!

The 15 Best Back to School Hacks!

Monday, August 28, 2017

If you're looking for some clever hacks to make going back to school a little bit easier this year, then this post is for you. Below you will see 15 of the smartest ways to make the most of your time and ease the frustration of the back to school season.

Starting a new year of school is sometimes overwhelming for children and parents alike. If you are more prepared to tackle it, you might feel a little more relaxed when the time comes. Below are 15 of the best back to school hacks to make your life a little easier.

1. Pre-Make Breakfast

Make sure you have quick and easy breakfast ready each day. You can make ahead and freeze some muffins, oatmeal cups, breakfast burritos, or pancakes that can be tossed in the microwave. Whatever you like to eat, try and have breakfasts that take minimal time to eat or heat up. You can also start some of these breakfasts in the slow cooker the night before.

2. Pre-Make Lunches

If your child takes their lunch to school, make it the night before. If you do a sandwich, put the mayo or mustard in between the cheese and meat, this will prevent the bread from getting soggy. You could also do a salad in a jar, bento themed lunch, or whatever you desire. Making lunches ahead will save stress and time in the morning. Check out all of my lunchbox posts here (including some fun lunchbox note jokes to include!)

3. Snack Station

Kids of all ages tend to be hungry when they get home from school. To save from hearing, "what can I eat?" Create a snack station. Grab a basket and place some tasty and healthy snacks in it for them to pick through. You could do fresh fruit, protein bars, dried fruit or mixed nuts, applesauce, or whatever else. You could also designate a drawer in the fridge just for snacks. When they get home from school, they know which snacks they can grab themselves.

4. Slow Cooker or Instant Pot Meals

Pull out the slow cooker for dinners! When you work all day and then have to help with homework, you might not find much time to prep dinner, so find some tasty slow cooker or Instant Pot meals to whip up. What I love about a slow cooker is you toss in food, turn it on and leave it. When you get home supper is served. Need inspiration? Search Pinterest for thousands of recipes!

5. Freezer Meals

Consider prepping freezer meals for the school week. Do this before the school year begins or on the weekends. Make up burritos, stews, lasagna, and more. Just toss in the oven to warm or in the slow cooker in the morning and dinner is served with minimal effort during the busy school week.

6. Calendar App

Need to stay on top of the school schedule and activities? If your phone doesn't come with one, consider downloading an app on your phone and set notifications to remind you of activities. Organizer for iPhone and CalenGoo are two good apps.

7. Command Center for School Gear

Create a command center for school gear. This can be in an entryway, the corner of a room, or whatever you have. Make sure your kids leave their school bags in the same area each night so you're not rushing around looking for it in the morning.

8. Pick Clothes out The Night Before

Let your kids get involved in picking out their outfits. Pick out everything the night before from shoes and socks to hair accessories. If your child helps pick out their outfit they won't fuss as much when it's time to get dressed and you can make sure clothes are clean and coordinated.

9. School Routine Ahead of Time

Before school starts make sure you get into the school routine ahead of time so everyone can adjust to waking up when they need to. Check out my post: How to Get Back into the Swing of School from Summer Vacation for tips.

10. Morning Checklist

If your child is old enough to read and could use some direction in the mornings, consider creating a checklist. Include items like brush teeth, get dressed, etc.. That way they know each thing they need to get done each morning just by glancing at the checklist.

11. Ease Back to School Anxiety

You can help kids ease the worry of going back to school with books! Invest in some back to school books that will help them get excited for the year ahead.

12. Homework Caddy

If you have to search for pencils and rulers when it's homework time, a little organization can go a long way. Create a homework caddy for each child to store pencils, pens, crayons, paper, and anything else they frequently need. You can buy a bin or storage container from the dollar store, then let your kids get creative and decorate it!

13. Different Bag for Different Activities

Struggling with keeping activities organized? Consider a different bag for each activity. Keep soccer gear, ballet gear, extracurricular class stuff, volunteering gear, etc. each in their own bag. It could be as simple as grabbing a cloth grocery tote for each activity and labeling it. You could also let each child decorate their bags in the theme of the activity.

14. Do Kids' Hair at Breakfast

Consider doing their hair at the table while your child eats breakfast. They take forever to eat so that's prime time to give their hair a comb or braid it!

15. File Box for School Art

Consider creating a file box to store all of the art your child brings home. Create a box for each child and label it. (You can find Banker's Boxes at office supply stores.) Insert a folder for each school year to keep it organized. This is a great way to keep their art as a keepsake for them to look back on as adults.


Have your kids gone back to school yet? Which hacks do you find the most helpful? I love to read your comments!

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