The parents, authors and organizational experts we talked to had lots of school-year survival tips:
-- Clear off the refrigerator door: Toss last year's lunch schedules and get new heavy-duty magnets with clips so papers won't slide off.
-- Set a time for a weekly family meeting. Convene one this week to discuss the new morning routine that will be starting soon.
Lots of sc hool supply lists for area schools along with tips and school lunch planning help at brainerddispatch.com's www.coolschoolu.com!
-- Get a 2002-03 school calender and fill in important dates on your family calendar and work calendar.
-- Create a filing system for each child, maybe color-coding the folders to keep track of music lessons, sports practice, religious classes.
-- Set aside places for lost and found, borrowed items, library books, things that need to be taken to school.
-- Get ready for stacks of artwork and other projects. Flat cardboard boxes or art portfolios are great for storing a child's masterpieces.
-- Starting today, go through one drawer or shelf in your child's room each day, and give away, sell or toss old toys, clothes, videotapes, CDs or books. If children are old enough, include them in the decision-making.
-- Update your family telephone listing, including cell phone numbers of your kids' friends, doctors or teachers. Laminate and distribute copies to family members and put a copy near each telephone and in each car.
-- Buy a permanent marking pen to label sweatshirts, rain boots, backpacks and retainer cases.
-- Consider keeping a bowl of small bills and quarters in the kitchen for last-minute lunch or milk money or transit fare.
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