It's that time of year again: back-to-school! The lawn chairs and gas grills on display at our favorite stores have been replaced with shelves of backpacks, notebooks and pencils. Who can forget the Staples ad with the happy dad throwing school supplies into a shopping cart, while his kids trudge along behind him? "The most wonderful time of the year," indeed.
While you're stocking up on the essentials for the students in your life, don't forget that your home plays a big part in their success as well. For a smooth and seamless transition to back-to-school mode, add these must-haves to your checklist!
A launchpad/landing area: School days will get off to an easier start if coats, shoes, backpacks and lunchboxes are in a central location. A storage bench or hall tree with hooks for coats and bins for bags is a great solution.
An efficient bathroom layout: If your home is full of people getting ready for work and school in the morning, everything from toothbrushes to hair dryers to makeup and toiletries should be organized and at the ready.
A space for lunch and snack making:When you're making sandwiches in the morning for a small army or setting out healthy snacks after the last bell of the school day, counter space is essential. A kitchen island with storage for knives, cutting boards and sandwich bags can serve as a one-stop hub for giving your students the fuel they need for learning.
A designated area for homework: In its 2015 list of back to school tips, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) encourages having an area in the home where students can concentrate on their work, preferably a quiet space away from the TV. Whether it's in the child's room or in another part of your home, the homework spot should be welcoming rather than a place your student dreads going every day.
A calm sleeping area: The AAP also notes that a good night's sleep and academic achievement go hand in hand. A student's bedroom can certainly be whimsical and fun while also promoting good sleeping habits.