(StatePoint) Whether the new school year means your kids will be heading back to the classroom, learning remotely, or a mix of both, back-to-school will most likely be stressful. Thinking ahead can help prepare everyone for a new way of learning, and simplify the transition from the slow ease of summertime to the bustle of the school year. Follow these tips so that everyone is ready when the first bell rings.

1. Resume the Routine


Summertime schedules are often lax, but a more structured routine is important during the school year. At least a week before classes start, reestablish set bedtimes and mealtimes to ease everyone back into school year habits. Even if children are remote-learning this fall, keep first day of school traditions alive with their favorite breakfast, pictures and a first day of school outfit.

2. Simplify Shopping


Create a checklist of items you’ll need to buy, as well as plan out where you’ll make purchases. Check school dress codes and required supply lists before you head out, so you don’t have to make multiple trips. In addition to the usual supplies, stock up on extra face masks, personal tissues and hand sanitizer. If your child will be learning virtually, you may want to consider adding items to the list like extra USB chargers and ports, noise-cancelling headphones – to help older siblings concentrate – and even blue light filtering glasses for kids that will be in front of a computer or tablet more than usual.

3. Set Up a Homework Station


A dedicated space to store supplies and paperwork is key to staying organized. Let kids take pride in this space so they want to spend time studying there by having them create their own accessories and decorating them to their liking. Duck Tape provides an easy, inexpensive way to add flair to school gear. Cover notebooks and folders in a favorite Duck Tape design, customize desk organizers and décor with cool on-trend colors, or craft one-of-a-kind creations, like pencil pouches and tablet covers. Available in more than 250 colors, designs and licenses, there’s a roll to suit any kid’s style.

4. Stick to the Schedule


Once the hustle and bustle of the school year kicks into high gear, it’s important that students, parents and teachers stay on track. Find a unique way to display activities, homework or personal messages to your kids like a “quote of the day.” You can use colored tape and chalkboard tape to outline a fun activity chart on a dry erase board or chalkboard easel. In addition to to-do lists and homework assignments, make sure to include outdoor time for recess and opportunities for arts and crafts. At the end of each day, sit together to check off everything that’s been completed and help your kids update the schedule for the next day – this way they stay engaged and excited for what’s to come.

5. Label Supplies


Kids are forgetful and it’s easy for supplies to become misplaced or swapped with other children. To ease your mind about your child sharing pencils or accidentally grabbing the wrong backpack, have a night where you sit down and label supplies with colorful Duck Tape. Your child can select favorite colors and customize folders for each subject. If learning from home, this is also great way to prevent “he stole my pencil” arguments amongst siblings.

For more back-to-school craft projects and DIY inspiration, visit duckbrand.com.

Simple preparations can help your family adjust to a new schedule and new school year.

Photo 1 Credit: (c) fizkes / Shutterstock.com

Photo 2 Credit: (c) famveld / Shutterstock.com

Photo 3 Credit: (c) Duck Brand

Photo 4 Credit: (c) Duck Brand

Photo 5 Credit: (c) Duck Brand