Back to School Organising

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School goes back for my twins at the end of January. Part of me is excited that they will be starting a new year of learning, and part of me is realising that time is flying.

The girls starting school last year. I’m sure they will be this excited this year.

The girls starting school last year. I’m sure they will be this excited this year.

There is also another part of me that likes the fact that they will be at school so that mummy might be able to get a few things done….. I know many parents do rejoice when school goes back so I might not be the only one doing a happy dance.

Although with school going back the routine returns. Lunches have to be made, bags packed, school uniforms washed and folded, kids dropped and picked up from school, and then after school activities return and therefore means that I need to take everyone to the required place for the required amount of time.

School holidays do tend to wear me out, but I do love the fact that you can just stay home and do nothing. You don’t have to be anywhere and no one needs a lunch box to stay home.

This was the twins last day of pre-school. 
They were super excited to be going to Kindy. Now they are in grade four, how time flies.

This was the twins last day of pre-school. 
They were super excited to be going to Kindy. Now they are in grade four, how time flies.

Soon the girls will be done with their primary education and move on to high school.

Not only have I been a little down about the fact that they are growing up so quickly, I have been thinking about all the items that I need to organise for the kids before they get to their first day of term 1 this year.

Are your kids starting school this year? If they are I bet they are very excited. 

What do you need for the first day of school?

  • Depending on what year you are in you have different things to bring to school. Your school gives you a breakdown of all items that you need to for your child.
  • If you have attended Kindy Orientation the year before, you would have received an info pack. In the info pack you get told all about the school, bell times, teachers, where rooms are, snow and bushfire policies (Yes our school has both snow & a bushfire policy), what the kids need for their first day and so much more.

    COST SAVING TIPS: 

    TIP 1:  Look at the uniform and see how you can cut costs. If the school wears a single colour polo shirt, this same top an be purchased cheaply at Target, BigW or Kmart.  If the school has a crest on their shirts buy a few of these and get the rest in the plain colour. This way your child has the fancy one for school functions, photos and excursions.

    TIP 2: The same is for other items, like shorts, skorts (a cross between a skirt and shorts) and so on.  I purchased skorts for the twins for $8 at BigW and from the school, they are $30 each. Shopping around for school uniform items is a good idea. Oh, and if your kids are like mine and love wearing shorts, buy the boys shorts and you will save a bundle. Who cares if they are boys or girls shorts. It really doesn’t matter.

    TIP 3: If your child is at the stage you need to purchase stationery and other supplies for school, it is a good idea to see what you already have at home. I’m sure that you might already have textas, pencils, sharpener, pencil case and more already. This will save you a bit of money at the shops.

     

For Kindy kids, the following is basically all you need:

  • Full uniform, school shoes, hat (wide-brimmed is ideal), sunblock, spare clothes if needed (In case of an accident. Pack undies, socks, pants, skirt or skort in a plastic bag).
  • Bag or backpack that is not too big for your child. Something that they can carry without any help.
  • Lunch box packed with a yummy lunch. Give the kids some snacks, finger food, a sandwich and a treat here and there. If your school has a canteen or possibly a tuck shop maybe put a $2 coin in their lunch box so they might get a treat once a week.
  • Water Bottle
  • Smock for creative tasks like painting.
  • Jumper & rain jacket in case the weather changes. If your weather is like mine it can change without notice. You don’t want your little one to be at school and freezing.
  • Make sure to label everything. Kids lose so many things and you want to be able to claim your item in the lost property box.
  • Library Bag ( I made one for the twins so that it is different from the other kids. This way it is easily recognised as theirs)

  • If you are concerned that you have not packed or supplied what is needed, it is always a good idea to check with your child’s teacher.

NOTE: Normally you have a two-week window to get everything organised for the start of the school year. This gives you ample time to source all items.

 

  • Download my FREE Guide to Make a Book Bag

    There are many ways to add your names to items. You can write them on the items with pen or texta, or get actual labels.

Labels can be for clothes, bags, books and more.

One website that we have used and love is called, Stuck On You.  We liked that the labels are unique to each child, and were so fast to arrive.

Just google labels for kids and you get so many choices that I’m sure you will find something that suits your needs.

The above list for Kindy kids was fine until my girls got to third grade. Once we reached this level in primary school we needed to provide more for the kids.

Each grade gets sent a list via the school newsletter and it is also available for purchase from the local newsagency.

If your school uses SkoolBag  (SkoolBag is an app the school uses for all communication, some school use it) then you can download the equipment list from there.

 

What the twins need for grade four: 

  • 2 x 30 cm ruler, clearly labelled with centimetre and millimetre markings (no metal or floppy rulers, please)
  • Scissors
  • Highlighters – at least two different colours
  • 2 glue sticks – 35g
  • 8 lead pencils, HB.
  • Sharpener with container
  • 2 rubbers for lead pencils
  • Coloured pencils
  • Gel pens and textas are optional
  • Pencil case large enough to hold the above items (1 pencil case only, please!)
  • Library bag
  • 4 plastic document wallets A4
  • 2 x 0.4 or 0.5 fine point black pens for map work, labelling and artwork
  • Large sheet of cardboard for Art folder
  • 3 x Lined A4 exercise books for homework/classwork
  • 2 x Boxes of tissues (this helps the classroom if each kid contributes)
  • 1 x packet whiteboard markers
  • USB 4-6GB
  • Drink bottle with water only for drinking during class
  • Please remember a hat each day

For example, grade five will be getting extras like pens as they will have their pen licence (yes this is a thing!), extra workbooks, cardboard for folders and also a calculator for maths.

 

 

This should give you a good idea of what to pack for your child who is starting school this year.

One of the things I do dread is packing the kids lunches, the dread is fuelled by the fact that the twins are so fussy that it is hard to know what to pack.

I want to give the twins something that I know that they will eat, but also try to expose them to new and yummy foods.

Did you know that you can put in tasty, yummy and healthy snacks that will make your job as the chief lunch packer easier.

A simple lunch box.

A simple lunch box.

There is a place called School Snack Box and they can send you a box of snacks that you don’t need to think about.

All you need to do is to pick how many snacks you wish to add to your child’s lunch box and then order the box that is right for you. You can choose from a box with 22 snacks for $40/month, with $15 shipping fee. Or you can get 44 snacks for $80/month and also with an extra $15 shipping fee.

This is a great option if you wish to have different snacks delivered each month. Add something different to the lunch box each day.

Starting big school is a major milestone. I hope your child has a great time.

It’s a massive step when kids start Kindy. You will be emotional even if you have told yourself it won’t happen.

Let it happen and it is all normal.  Trust me, I was happy and still crying.

If you are able to help out at the school, do it. It’s so amazing to see your child thrive and be more confident in their new school.

I volunteered to help with reading when the twins were younger and will do so for Alexander as well when he starts school.

Good luck with term one. I hope your kids have a great time and you do as well.

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