Back to School Survival Tips for Busy Moms

Last Updated on March 13, 2020 by Diane Hoffmaster

Back to school season is upon us and moms are stressed out.  There are shoes to buy and school supply lists to analyze.  We battle crowds, listen to toddlers whine and threaten teenagers with bodily harm if they choose one more outfit that doesn’t meet school dress code requirements.  Back to school survival requires an awful lot of patience and a whole lot of planning.  As a mom who has gone through the whole back to school thing a number of times already, I thought I would share a few tips to help make your back to school shopping a little more pleasant.

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Back to School Survival Tips for Busy Moms

Back to School Shopping Tips

Get organized early: 

Set up a bulletin board to tack up permission slips and class schedules.  Where will your kids do their homework?  Create a homework station with all the supplies they need for success.  Do the kids’ backpacks have a home?  Make sure they know where that home is. 

Set up a drawer with small plastic boxes to hold things like paperclips, erasers and Box Tops for Education that need to be sent into school.  Yes, those Box Tops really do earn your child’s school money so make sure you save them! Walmart back to school displays are a great place to find Box Tops for Education products. Click HERE to learn more about double box tops!


Back to School Survival Tips for Busy Moms


You don’t need it all RIGHT NOW: 

Despite what your child tells you, they do not need every single new school thing on the list immediately.  Sure, you should probably have all their school supplies done by the end of the first week or so but they aren’t going to die if they don’t have 3 packages of index cards on day one.  Back to school survival means you need to use common sense and buy what you can. Personally, I prefer to wait on the ‘teacher supplies’ like hand sanitizer and Kleenex until they go on sale.  Those things aren’t cheap, although I did find a good deal on Kleenex at Walmart when I shopped there this weekend.

teenager in fashionable clothing

Know the school dress code and bring a tape measure:

Most schools have a dress code nowadays and most teens really hate them.  Know what your school dress code is and make sure you keep that in mind when you shop.  Bring a tape measure so there are no ‘iffy’ purchases.

Get into a routine early: 

Do not wait until the day before school starts before getting your kid up at 6 AM.  Slowly transition them to an earlier bed time and an earlier wake up time. Back to school survival is next to impossible if you are all tired and cranky.

Want to have a low stress school year? Here are a few back to school organizing tips to help tame clutter and organize your life!

Make as few stops for your kids school supplies as possible:

I am all for stopping in somewhere for a good sale but if you have to go to 8 stores that are 10 miles away from each other to save 50 cents on pens, you are wasting valuable time.  Check out sales flyers and pick one or two places that have most of what you need at a reasonable price. 

Back to school shopping can be stressful.  Glue sticks and pencils and notebooks, oh MY! 

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  1. just came back from walmart a few minutes ago :) i grabbed some of the same things you did, hahaha
  2. Awesome, I love the double Box Tops! It's so nice when you can hit one store and get everything you need at a good price.
  3. These are great tips. I love back to school shopping and stocking up on all the fun supplies!
  4. Great tips! My kids start in two weeks and have yet started to go to sleep earlier. They need to start back on that routine ASAP. They are so used to staying up until 1-2 AM! My son has to catch the bus at 6:40 AM so he really needs to work on getting to bed around 10 PM. My kids are older so shopping for school supplies is not as fun as it used to be. I miss those days.
  5. Thanks so much for sharing these tips! I now have two kids in school, which means that things are about to get crazy! O_o

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