Want to start the school year off right? Start with a few simple organization tips that will help keep you on top of your household all year long.

School Forms Folder
Keep one folder in your home office or computer nook labeled “School Forms.” As soon as you empty backpacks each day, place any papers requiring your attention in the school forms folder. Same with important emails from the teacher—save them to “School Forms” folder in your inbox. Make it part of your routine to check those folders daily, sign and return what’s required and mark your calendar for anything needing a task reminder. It’s also a good idea to clean out these folders once a week on Sunday nights before the new school week begins.

Student Projects Bin
Sometimes called a “memory box,” this little lifesaver is nothing but a series of hanging folders in a Rubbermaid bin. Label one folder per school year, one bin per child. Every time your student brings home a winning test or memorable piece of artwork, file it in the appropriate school year folder. No more wondering what to do with all those papers worth keeping but not worth cluttering. The student projects bin keeps everything tidy and stored for posterity!

Grab-and-Go Food Storage
Keep three bins in the cupboard and fridge labeled Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks. Use them to store supplies for making lunches, snacks to stuff in backpacks, and fast and easy breakfast options for those busy mornings when pancakes aren’t gonna happen. By keeping three bins on hand, you can see at a glance what’s running low, and the kids will know exactly where to go for mom-approved food to fuel their tummies.

Evening and Morning Checklists
Give each of the students in your household two personalized checklists—one for the evening before bed, and one for the morning before school. List anything that needs to be done on a daily basis, such as “sign homework log” or “set out tomorrow’s clothes.” For fun, laminate the lists and let them check off each item with a dry erase marker.

Family Prayer Time
Last but not least, don’t neglect to set aside time for prayers. Choose a time of day to pray with and for your children, and make it a part of your routine. Do you drive the kids to school? Pray on the way there. Are you usually seated together for breakfast in the morning or dinner at night? Pray together before you eat. If bedtime is the most convenient hour, pray with your children when you tuck them in or remind them it’s time for lights-out. Do a short devotion together before you all hit the sack. Staying in tune with the Father will help keep you heart and soul at peace even as the rest of the household seems to be scattered in different directions. Such is the life of a busy mom!

“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need” (Matthew 6:33, NLT).