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Conquer Back-to-School Clutter: A Professional Organizer's Guide

Sep 01, 2023


With the back-to-school season in full swing, the influx of backpacks, art supplies, and clothes can quickly lead to chaos. But fear not! As a professional organizer, I'm here to share some insightful steps to help you master the art of managing clutter associated with these three major aspects of the school routine: backpacks, art supplies, and clothes.

  1. Backpack Bliss: A clutter-free backpack is the key to an organized school day. Implement these strategies to maintain a streamlined backpack:
  • Daily Dump and Sort: Encourage your child to empty their backpack every day after school. Sort through papers, return completed assignments, and remove unnecessary items.
  • Designated Pockets: Assign specific pockets or pouches for different items. Pens and pencils go in one pocket, snacks in another, and so on.  If their backpack constantly gets lost, try putting an Apple AirTag in a pocket.
  • Use Containers: Utilize small pouches or containers within the backpack to keep smaller items like USB drives, hand sanitizers, and earphones from getting lost.
  • Weekly Clean-Out: Dedicate a specific day each week to give the backpack a thorough clean-out. This prevents the accumulation of unnecessary items.
  1. Art Made Easy: Art created at school or even at home is notorious for creating clutter. However, with the right approach, you can manage all the masterpieces.
  • Defined Display Case: Designate a specific area for new art. This could be a bulletin board or a corner of their room. Have a place for your kids to rotate in their new art to display for their family to see!
  • Sort and Categorize: Group important pieces together and let go of one you know your kids won't deem as unique.
  • Made a book: I loved using Plum Prints to turn my kids' art into books. We would pick their favourite art and send it in to be made into a book that is easy to store and enjoy in years to come.
  • Remember this: Art stored in a bin tucked away in the basement is not art that is being appreciated. Consider asking yourself what pieces are keepers and what can be let go. Chances are, your kids don't even remember whose art belongs to whom!
  1. Closet Control: Managing school clothes can be a breeze when you follow these strategies:
  • Seasonal Switch: With the change of seasons, perform a wardrobe switch. Store out-of-season clothes in bins or under-bed storage and keep only the current season's clothes accessible.
  • Donate or Pass Down: Regularly assess your child's clothes for items that no longer fit or are worn out. Donate or pass down these items to declutter their closet.
  • Hanger Discipline: Use matching hangers for a streamlined look. This looks neat and prevents clothes from slipping off and ending up on the floor.
  • Visual Accessibility: Arrange clothes by type and colour, making it easier to find outfits quickly. Consider using labels or dividers to maintain order.

By incorporating these expert-approved strategies into your back-to-school routine, you'll maintain a clutter-free environment and set a positive example for your children. Remember, staying organized is an ongoing process that requires commitment, but the benefits of reduced stress and increased efficiency are well worth the effort. Here's to a successful and clutter-free school year ahead!

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