The Ultimate Back to School Checklist for Moms

The Ultimate Back to School Checklist for Moms | Baby Chick

The Ultimate Back to School Checklist for Moms

Few things in life are as bittersweet as back-to-school time for kiddos. On the one hand, you may have been your child’s personal snack butler all summer while listening to iterations of “I’m bored” over and over. On the other, perhaps the summer flew by and your sun-kissed cutie is starting school for the first time. No matter if it is your first time taking your child to school or the very last year you’ll ever do so, a certain amount of emotions and anxieties surround the event: for both you and your child. Though I can’t promise a hassle-free year (or even a stress-free) there are a few ways to ease into the school year and make back to school more sweet than bitter.

Ultimate Back to School Checklist

School Supplies Shopping List

Make supply shopping fun again. There is something incredibly magical about new school supplies. In fact, adults love a good planner or stationary set, too: it promises a new beginning and a fresh start in a way nothing else can. Make school supply shopping a fun family tradition—let them buy the gaudy, hideous folders you’d never use, encourage them to select a (sturdy) book bag that has some flavor-of-the-week cartoon character on it if they so choose, and go out for dinner or have a frozen pizza at home while you chat about school and their hopes for the year together. Not only will this become something they look forward to, but it will provide an incredible memory that relates excitement with education: that’s a win-win for everyone involved. Passion and excitement for education can lead to a lifelong love of learning, and ultimately your child’s success in school.

Pro-tip:

We all know the good stuff goes on sale directly after the end of a season, right? Depending on the store, end of the season means the first week of August, and this could lead to some big-time savings for your family. Certain supplies, like pencils, paper, erasers, and crayons can be bought in bulk at bigger chain stores, which means you can get a couple of years’ worth of the more boring supplies at a time: which gives everyone more time to focus on which lizard monster they’d like to build a shrine to by way of folders and notebooks in their backpacks. Here’s a great basic list to build off of based on your child’s age and stage in school:

  • 2 boxes of 24 crayons
  • 1 box of washable markers
  • 2 black dry erase markers
  • 2 packs of pencils
  • Pens
  • 1 pencil pouch with zipper
  • 10 glue sticks
  • 5 wedge/pencil top erasers
  • 4 wide-ruled composition books
  • 2 solid-colored pocket folders
  • 1 book bag with no wheels (most schools are anti-wheeled bags unless otherwise noted!)
  • 2 boxes of tissues
  • 1 box plastic sandwich bags
  • 1 hand sanitizer
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And most importantly? Grab special after-school snacks!

I was a latchkey kid, personally, and loved coming home from a long and arduous day of school in the 90’s (NOT painstaking in comparison to adulthood, as it turns out) to a handful of solid snacks to eat while I did my homework. I plopped down my bookbag and kicked off my shoes so I could savor the flavor of my packet of dunkaroos and my favorite tv shows. Whether your kiddo will come home to no one or everyone, growing children need calories! While fruit and veggies are always a great option, let them pick out a few pantry staple snacks the last grocery trip before school starts back. It’s one less thing you’ll have to do when the year gets into a groove, after all!

Back to School Clothes Shopping List

The sky is the limit for back to school clothes shopping—or, rather, your budget and kiddo’s tolerance for trying on clothes. It’s important to go into the year with things that gets your child excited for the day, and one of the best ways to do that is with a fresh back to school outfit or pair of shoes. Beyond that, though, once your little scholar is able to wear a few things between grade levels it is always a good idea to grab only a handful of staple pieces that need replacing from last year. Be on the lookout for end-of-season sales again, and be sure to take advantage if you are in one of the states that offer a tax-free weekend to get an even better deal on back to school fashion and accessories.

READ MORE
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Back To School To Do List

1. Contact Their Teachers

As a current teacher and parent, I can’t tell you how incredible it is to have parent support from the jump. Not only does it show us that you’re willing to partner with us in your child’s education, but it also helps to diminish nervousness on both sides and form a good working relationship. Call your school if they don’t let you know your child’s teacher in advance, (one week prior to the first day is within reason) and make like a polar bear and break that ice. Speaking of ice, we like iced coffee. A lot.

2. Address Learning Gaps Early & Often

While on the subject of speaking with teachers, make sure you are your child’s number one advocate: let the teacher know of any concerns you might have so he or she can address them properly and with the right resources. We promise we would rather hear concerns that were common and “no big deal” in place of radio silence when it matters. It is normal for a kindergarten student to not be able to read or tie their shoes, but imagine the surprise my friend experienced when finding out one of her fourth grade students couldn’t do either of those things with a new student coming from out of state. No one likes this kind of surprise, and it is not helpful to your child or their teacher to hold back from giving them critical information that could help them in educating your child.

READ MORE
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3. Take a First Day Picture

For some reason everyone has been hating on the first day pictures lately. I wish I had something as sweet and cheesy to reflect on as these precious mementos, and chances are your child will be grateful you endured their groans and sighing to get that perfect snapshot. If you are fortunate enough to have a younger child entering elementary school, chances are they will relish the chance to show off their fun new outfit, pigtails, or light-up shoes. It’s both encouraging and incredibly sad when you realize your child is the youngest they’ll ever be at this moment: don’t be so easily swayed by those middle and high school kids begging you not to take a picture that you miss the opportunity to lovingly irritate your children and capture it all on your phone.

4. Write Them a Note

If your kiddo can read, a note tucked into their lunchbox or waiting for them in their backpack can make their whole day. From my experience as a teacher, children desire and seek independence, but will also look for their parents in the crowd at awards day. They’ll talk about you as though you’re not of this earth and somehow possess magical powers, (if this is the case, could you please magically respond to my emails?!) and despite their best efforts to seem too cool for you to snuggle them or kiss them, they are always going to want and need you. I might be their school parent, but you are their forever parent: and they will cherish a small note, a kind word, or a first day bear hug forever as well.

About the Author /

Old mom to a chocolate lab and new mom to a baby girl, former teacher and current higher education professional.

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Instagram post 17852873872664390 Harvesting colostrum . . . look at all of that liquid gold!⁠ 😍 If your baby comes early or you are already lactating before baby arrives, it’s great to hand express into a teaspoon and gather what you’ve collected into a syringe. #breastfeedingtip
📷: @boo.b.ltd
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Instagram post 17893588471419368 ⁠Gosh, they can be such a pain in the ass sometimes. But then when they stop and look at you with those puppy dog eyes, you can’t help but scoop them up and love on them. They might be a pain in the ass but they are YOUR pain in the ass. 😂❤️ (From one mother of a strong-willed--read exhausting and opinionated--kid to another!)⁠
📷: @humorandwine⁠
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Instagram post 17853985321641015 I feel like several people have been going over a week past their due dates lately . . . Is it something in the water? 🤔 How many days before or after your due date did you have your baby? 👶❤️⁠
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Instagram post 17899717765403522 ❤️ How to Help When Visiting a New Mom – Podcast Ep 21 ❤️⁠
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Becoming a new mother, whether it be your first baby or your sixth, is filled with so many emotions. 🎢 Figuring out your new normal can take a minute as you recover from giving birth and get to know your new baby. People will be at your doorstep in no time wanting to congratulate you and meet your baby, but sometimes people aren't necessarily thinking about what they can do for YOU to be helpful. If you know someone who has recently had a baby or if you are currently expecting, today’s podcast episode is for you! ❤️ {Link in bio!}⁠
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This episode is brought to you by @skylightframe. It's a digital picture frame that has a touch-screen display that documents all of your family’s special moments—a great gift for yourself or for an expecting or new mom. If you want to bring a nice gift when visiting a new mom, be sure to check out Skylight Frame and use our discount code BABYCHICK for $10 off your order! #ad #skylightframe⁠
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Instagram post 17920976449353517 💪 Mom Hacks for Staying Fit After Having Kids⁠
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Going to keep it real here, your fitness game is going to change after having kids. If you were crushing it before having babies, you're going to find that the free time for working out isn't what is used to be.⁠
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Regardless of where you were at, there are things you can do to make your heath a priority and be a good example to your little ones.⁠
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1. Don't rush back. There's no gold star here. Take your time, get the clearance from your OB/midwife and start when you're ready.⁠
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2. Schedule your workouts. Like most things in life now, you're on a schedule. Create time in your new life for you -- you'll thank yourself later.⁠
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3. Ask for Help. Chances are high that the Mom down the street is looking for some kid free time as well. You take an hour, she takes an hour and we're all better off for it.⁠
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4.  Embrace the little things. Your day will present opportunities to get your butt moving. Find them.⁠
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5. Get a new outfit. Because, duh.⁠
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6. Join a fitness community. It's scientifically proven that external motivators work when it comes to starting and sticking with a fitness routine. Utilize your community for support and motivation.⁠
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Words & 📸 : @juna.moms⁠
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Instagram post 17844140491774206 ⁠🎵 I’ve got my whole world in my hands
I’ve got my whole wide world in my hands
I’ve got my whole world in my hands
I’ve got my whole world in my hands 🎵
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When you meet your baby(ies) and your whole world changes. 💕
📷: @megbed
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Instagram post 18110828746014338 The first year after baby is the leading time when marriages break up. The extra stress, lack of sleep, and major life changes can all contribute to communication breakdown and losing intimacy. 💔 That's why protecting relationships is such an important part of postpartum planning (done in pregnancy). Parenthood is an emotionally provocative experience. These heightened emotions help you tune into your baby's needs, but it can also help you tune into each other.⁠
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Speak your partner's love language in postpartum. Send this resource to your loved one so that they can make you feel loved and supported in a meaningful way.⁠
Words & 📸: @birthbossco⁠
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Instagram post 17934950050319412 EXACTLY! 🙌 I wish more moms knew this and didn't feel pressured to say yes automatically to guests--of course, unless they want to! 😊 But you can always say no and not right now. Take your time to bond with your new baby. If you want people to come over, great! But don't feel bad if you don't and want more time alone with your family. People who love you should understand. ❤️⁠
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Instagram post 17857907638591275 Dinner time with toddlers can oftentimes be hectic and stressful. Sometimes they’ll eat what you’ve made them and other times they won’t. 😒 We’ve been there! This is why we are sharing two yummy dinner recipes that have been toddler approved that the whole family can enjoy—Taco Pizza and Stuffed Sweet Potatoes! 😋
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We substituted sour cream in these recipes with @stonyfield YoBaby yogurt because it provides not only the calcium they need, but also probiotics, protein and vitamin D! 👍 (Our pediatrician says our little guy needs 2-4 servings of dairy per day!) The yogurt still has that tangy flavor that you’re looking for but with even more benefits! Cheers to full tummies and happy families! 🙌 #ad #stonyfield
📹: @trippfilms
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