5 Time Management Tips for Busy Moms for Back-to-School Season

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Time is hitting warp speed now that schools are gearing back up. Heed these tips from Life as MOM contributor, Prerna, to help you manage your time.

School season will be here before we know it and yes, our days are going to somehow get busier, more hectic, and seem shorter than the promised 24 hours.

Here in India, school season started in July, so believe me when I say, I know. **laughing**

Here are 5 of my favorite time management tips to help make your days easier and manage your time better:

1. Set Up a Homework Station

I cannot stress the importance of this. Despite the fact that we have the one child to do homework with, having an organized and well-stocked homework station means never having to hunt for erasers, paint or crayons at the last minute.

The homework station also includes boxes for storing school work or art projects that need completing, and of course, a file that lists the school curriculum for that month as well as printables for at-home learning.

2. Plan for the Mornings, the Evening Before

Yes, take out the uniforms or clothes for next day, make sure that backpacks are packed and placed at the door or their assigned spot, and that lunchboxes are clean and if possible, packed as well.

If you drive the kids to school, make sure you’ve put your car keys, cellphone and wallet with the driver’s license in it, on the table in the foyer or any other place where you can see it easily.

3. Wake Up 15 Minutes Earlier

Ah yes, the waking early bit. Why is this important? Because it will give you a much-needed 15 minutes of quiet time before the madness starts. You can take a shower in peace, get ready or simply, enjoy a cup of coffee without having to run around all over the house.

Try it for a week. You’ll notice your mornings are way better than ever.

photo source: Food for My Family

4. Plan a Week of School Lunches over the Weekend

I plan our weekly menus every Sunday evening. I also, plan our daughter’s school lunchbox menus at that time. Five days of lunches, planned down to the last detail. Why? Because it saves me the stress of thinking what to put in her lunchbox each evening, helps me to shop for whatever I need at one go and ensures she get a healthy lunch at school every day. Win!

5. Make Room of ‘Emergencies’ in Your Schedule

Finally and this is key, always allow for ‘buffer’ or ‘margin’ time in your schedule. Whether it is leaving for school or getting ready in the morning, make sure you have a little wiggle room for those last-minute emergencies that seem to crop up when you least need them. A bathroom trip right when you’re about to step out of the door? Yeah, something like that.

Make school season easy for you, the kids and everyone in the family with a little bit of planning and preparation. Meanwhile, if you need more time management tips for other busy seasons for our ‘life as mom’, check out my latest FREE eBook – Time Management 101 for Busy Moms.

How will you make back-to-school season easy for your family?

— Prerna Malik is a mom, a wife, a writer and woman who believes in parenting with love, being postively productive, and creating a home that invites you to put your feet up and relax. Find her sharing her simple tips and easy-to-do ideas at The Mom Writes or follow her on Twitter.

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  1. I have found numbers two and five to be especially helpful for getting anywhere in the morning. Thanks for the tips.

  2. Hi Steph, you’re right.. planning things out in the evening has been SO helpful in making our mornings calmer and faster.. Plus, we leave early which helps us with the wiggle room we need in our schedule:-)

  3. Prerna, good tips. I certainly notice the difference on the mornings I don’t get up a little earlier. It feels like I’m playing catch up rather than directing traffic.

    I also advise families to figure out a plan for family fitness and activity. Not only is this good for the body, but exercise helps kids perform better at school, it’s a stress buster and a great way to fit some family time in and stay close. I’ve put together some suggestions for end-of-summer planning right here:

    Thank you for the good tips!

  4. These time management tips are, in a word, timely! I’m a public-school teacher and I start back to work on Monday. My oldest son will start K-4 preschool and I’ll be dropping my younger son at the sitter…..both places are NOT on my way to school. Plus my husband’s current job project is an hour and a half away (one way) from our home, and he will leave too early to be any help to me in the morning. I plan to do ALL these things to help me out next week. So thankful you posted this today!

  5. I am way more efficient (and relaxed) when I get up earlier. I started getting up an hour before I “need” to sometime last year – I continued doing it this summer, too. That is morning “me” time. Amazing what some quiet kid-free time does for a productive start to my day. A load of laundry gets washed and put in dryer, lunches in packs, water bottles filled, bills paid – you name it. Plus…(and this is MOST important!) I sit in my chair in the quiet, sipping coffee and playing Words with Friends and reading emails. Ahhhhhh. It is amazing how productive it feels. I feel two steps ahead every morning! 🙂

    1. I love having the house to myself. Only, I have to get up pretty early in the morning to make that happen. LOL!

  6. Great tips! It’s funny just how much just taking a few minutes to plan the night before helps keep your mornings stress-free!

  7. I find that using a timer for the slow to get moving child (and myself!) works wonders in the morning to keep us all on track and saves a lot of battles. “You can keep doing that but I’m setting the timer and in 5 minutes you have to stop and brush your teeth.”

  8. I can’t wait for school to start, but yes, there are pros and cons! I go from having 2 girls all day to 1 but the mornings are sooo hard since I’m not a morning person to begin with! But the “hour-rush” before heading out the door is worth it the rest of the day! I will definately start my preparations the night before, why didn’t I ever do that before?! DUH! (maybe I’m still learning, my daughter’s just starting grade 1 so I guess I am too!) LOL

  9. I love all of your tips – so simple and common sense, but so incredibly helpful! If I followed all the tips above, each day I am certain our mornings would run smoothly. I especially love your tip about planning the lunch-boxes each week – I will start doing this today! Thanks, Fleur