Getting Back into Back to School Schedules

by Jenn @ Frugal Upstate on August 24, 2013

Are you into your “Back to School Routine” yet?

We sure aren’t.  For us here in NY school doesn’t start until after Labor Day–so we are in the final countdown phase.  As our rather loose (but busy!) summer comes to an end I’m thinking about school, kids activities and schedules.  This year we are going to have even more going on then ever before.

Princess is cutting down from 2 dance classes to 1 this year, which is nice, but she is adding Modified Field Hockey in on top of the fall middle school play, Odyssey of the Mind, Art Club, Chorus and, of course, schoolwork!  Buddy in the past has “only” played fall intramural soccer and done Cub Scouts. . . but this year he is adding in Chorus and Odyssey of the Mind.  Add into that my blogging, church activities, American Legion Riders and fall preserving schedule (to include co-teaching classes for the Cooperative Extension) and Yankee Bill’s work, pool league, NY Guard, American Legion Riders and deer hunting and, well, we are a busy family.  Keeping track of schedules is a HUGE part of us staying in our school routine.

Walmart asked me to do a post on “Back to School Routine” and I knew mine had to be a project that dealt with tracking our busy calendars!Back to School Calendar supplies

I headed off to the office supply section of my local Walmart and picked up some dry erase boards–both calendar and plain–and some dry erase markers.  I grabbed a couple of Sharpies while I was at it, then swung by the scrapbook section (in the craft section) and scored some cute letters for a dollar a package!

My concept was to convert the “month” calendar into a week calendar–one “week” across for each family member and then notes in the bottom “week”.   I used the permanent marker to write each of our names down the side of the calendar and then use the regular dry erase to fill in various items on our schedules–appointments, meetings, afterschool activities, TV days (the kids take turns getting control of the TV shows watched) etc.

Adjusting a month calendar

Using the permanent Sharpie markers I took the smaller dry erase boards and created a special “week” for each child.  I used a ruler and the Sharpie to mark off the lines for the days of the week, and then I used the stick on letters to label the days.  My intent is that these will be used for even more detailed information for the kids–papers being due, tests, things they need to remember to bring to school, anything that THEY thing is important.  Hopefully that will start teaching them the value of keeping a written schedule to organize themselves. Back to school Calendar

I was very pleased with how they turned out!  They will be hung on the wall in the kitchen where we will all have to walk past them multiple times each day.  Just as soon as I get back to Walmart and buy some of those Command Hooks to hang them up with (I love those things!  They hold well and don’t put holes in your wall but come off super easy).

How do you keep your kids schedules in check for back to school?

****This is a sponsored post****
Disclosure: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Lee Ann August 24, 2013 at 11:54 am

What is odyssey of the mind? Never heard of it.

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Jenn @ Frugal Upstate September 30, 2013 at 12:52 pm

Odyssy of the Mind is a sort of group problem solving competition. According to their website: Odyssey of the Mind
is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Team members apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level. Thousands of teams from throughout the U.S. and from about 25 other countries participate in the program.

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SusieH January 22, 2014 at 1:01 pm

Just wondering how these calendars have worked out for you so far this school year. Do you find it easy to keep them updated. It seems like all our family’s appts. are kept in MY planner and I like the idea of making it a shared thing.

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Jenn @ Frugal Upstate January 24, 2014 at 9:34 am

Susie–the big calendar works GREAT when I take the time to fill it out on Sunday evening. The kids, hubs and I all refer to it to see what is going on. The individual week calendars for the kids haven’t been used as much–the kids just haven’t gotten in the habit of filling them out and I don’t need something extra to do. I think as they get older and have to keep track more of their own schedules they may choose to use the week planner.

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