We may be some of the last people in the continent to head back to school, and I am happy for that. We always go back the week after Labour Day. The weather in Southern Ontario really does change at the beginning of September so we always feel ready for summer to end and school to start. A round of what we are doing to get ready for school:
Backpacks and Lunch Bags - we are using the same ones that we had last year. We like Herschel for backpacks, and Fluf for lunchbags. I will give them a good wash next week and they will be ready to go. E still has the HydroFlask we got him last year. Q's broke fairly early the year so he just uses whatever we have for other bottle lying around for now. We have AirTags in both kids' backpacks. It helps to know where E is on his way to and from school (as he does not have a phone), and to keep tabs on Q, although we usually know where he is at all times. EDIT: Taking Q to camp this morning and he tells me his backpack has a hole and the zipper is broken, so I guess we are in the market for a new backpack after all!
School Supplies - Our school does not give out full lists of school supplies before class starts but I know that we will have to pick up a few things once they get there. Q will want some fun markers, and I think E will need some folders. We have many things here already but we always seem to be low on pencils, erasers, pencil sharpeners, and tape, so we will go to Staples and find a few extra things for home too.
Clothes and Sneakers - Both kids have newish sneakers they got this summer, so those will work for now. I thought E may be interested in getting some fun sneakers, like Jordans or Air Max's, and I was willing to buy him a pair, but he hasn't been that keen on it, so *shrug* I won't spend the money. Maybe once he gets to school to see what his friends have, he will change his mind. I usually pick up a few new shirts for them to wear on the first day, but again, no one seems to care that much, so if I don't make it to the mall in the next week, I won't stress out too much.
Haircuts - E got a haircut yesterday, so we need to get Q in there ASAP!!
Extra-Curriculars - Both boys will be doing tutoring and swimming. E is going to take guitar lessons instead of piano for the fall term (since our house is not accessible during our house reno) and Q is going to do some off-season baseball training. I think that there will be some school teams that E can try out for this year, and both boys can participate in the cross-country race in early October.
Logistics - For the past couple of years we have shared carpooling duties with our neighbour as the little kids went to the YMCA before and after school. E would then walk with their older kid. But they are moving away and there aren't any other families that have the same routine as us (at least not that I can tell, I'll still be sniffing out some options). So we will be driving up to the school twice per day, and E will be heading up to walk by himself. I'm hoping that he can find some other friends along the way to walk with as the year gets going. On the first day we always walk together, it's one of my favourite days of the year.
Expectations - One of our house rules is no video games or TV before school, so that rule will be coming back. And I'm instituting a new rule of no screens between getting home from school and suppertime. I think there are other things they could be doing instead of grabbing their iPad as soon as they walk nine the door, and I'm tired of yelling people to come to the table when it is time to eat. E was saying, "What are we supposed to do then?!" and I responded with "reading, helping with supper, riding your bike, tidy up the house, play cards" so I think I'll make a paper list and then when I hear this again, I can pull out the list. I would also like E to start making his lunch now that he'll be in Grade 7. He can also leave the school grounds for lunch so he may want to do that once a week or so.