10 Easy Ways to Make the First Week of School Stress Free

The first week of school can be stressful. Make it easier on everyone with these simple tips for busy moms.

This post contains affiliate links. See my Disclosure Policy for details.

The first week of school is a whirlwind for everyone. Getting adjusted to new teachers, classrooms, schedules, and friends is a lot for kids to deal with at once. As parents, we need to tackle new morning and after school routines, homework, school night bedtimes, and getting dinner on the table without losing our minds (or our cool).

With so much going on it's natural to feel stressed out during the first week of school. But you don't need to! You can make the transition into a new school year as stress free as possible with these tips for a successful first week, along with a complete toolkit to help you get organized for the entire school year.

Get ready for the first week of school with these tips! Make back to school easy when you follow these steps to make the school year less stressful for everyone. Genius ways to connect with your kids, get organized, and ready for an awesome year! #backtoschool #parenting #momlife #organization

Transition and change is one of the primary causes of stress for people of all ages. For school age children, adjusting from a care free summer at home to a new school, classroom, or teacher is a major transition. Being mindful of the range of emotions that this can bring is the secret to helping our kids and ourselves through the first days of the school year. 

There are also some practical things that you can do to help ease the transition and make the first week of school easier on the entire family. These 10 things will help you do just that.

PS - does your family include pets? Click here to see how to make back to school easier for them too!

How to Make the First Week of School Stress Free

Clear your schedule

The first week of school is not the time to make appointments or overload on activities. You may need to reschedule your normal commitments for this week to allow everyone to focus on getting used to the new school day schedule. Keeping your family free of as many other commitments as possible allows you to do that more easily.

Have healthy snacks ready for after school

Eating healthy foods helps your body to better regulate stress. And with a new routine, your kids will likely be ready to eat as soon as they step off the bus! Have a snack station with easy snacks for kids pre-portioned and ready to go to avoid "hangry" kids after school.

Give your kids time and space to decompress after school

It's tempting to ask a million questions as soon as your kids get home on the first day, but it can be overwhelming to your child. Don't be surprised if they don't want to talk as soon as they walk through the door. Give them some time and space to decompress and they will likely open up more quickly.

Be prepared for mood swings as your kids adjust to their new routine

After school meltdowns are real. Kids are working so hard to self-regulate at school that as soon as they are home they lose it. Don't take it personally (it's actually a sign that they feel safe to be themselves and express their feelings). Help them through their meltdowns and give them the support they need.

Enforce your school year bedtimes and screen time limits to help your kids get enough quality sleep

If your house is anything like mine, bedtime and screen time rules are a bit more relaxed in summer. Start enforcing your school year bedtime and screen time limits about a week before the school year starts so that your kids have a chance to acclimate to the new routine. Getting adequate sleep is essential for managing stress all year long. but especially in times of transition.

Plan simple, family favorite meals to take the pressure off everyone

Don't let getting dinner on the table or mealtime battles add to your stress this week. Plan easy meals that you know your family loves for this week. Take advantage of making freezer meals or crock pot recipes so you can check one more thing off your first week of school to do list.

Avoid questioning your kids about their day, but instead practice engaging them in conversation

When dinner time rolls around, avoid asking "how was your day?" Try one of these more open ended questions instead, or start by telling them about your day. We like to play High-Low-Buffalo around the dinner table, where each person tells 3 things about their day. "High" is something good, "Low" is something not so good, and "Buffalo" is anything they want to share. 

Plan for a quiet Friday night at home with pizza and movies (or your family's favorite way to unwind)

You may feel like celebrating the end of the first week of school but honestly you will likely all be way too tired to party. Plan a quiet night at home, order pizza, and veg on the couch with a family friendly movie night so that you can all unwind and reconnect after a stressful week.

Evaluate your new routines and make changes as you need to

As you move through the first week of school you may find that you need to get your kids up earlier than you expected, or that homework is taking longer than you thought it would. It's OK to be flexible and allow your routines to shift to your changing needs. 

Remember to acknowledge that your kids may be stressed and let them know how proud you are every day

The most important thing you can do for your kids this week is let them know that you understand that this can be a tough time. Be there for them to listen without offering too much advice - that may not be what they need. 

They do need to hear that you are there for them and that your are proud of the effort they are making. This can help lay the groundwork for a great school year! Slip an encouraging note in their lunch box so they have some comfort from home in the middle of the day.

Love these tips? Get more with the Back to School Bootcamp

That's the just beginning of what you'll find in the Back to School Bootcamp. It's a complete Back to School Toolkit to help you be more organized and less stressed this school year.

Take 40% off the Back to School Bootcamp, now through 8/31 only! Get it at the LOWEST PRICE EVER today.

I'd love to hear from you! To get in touch, message me on Facebook or Instagram, or send me an email.