This week is the final week of our Back to School Organization mini-series. I’ve had so much fun getting organized with you, it’s always better with a friend.
I think we were able to cover many of the more important topics for back to school organization. However, if there is a topic that wasn’t discussed, I love to hear your feedback.
Here are the topics that we’ve covered during the month of August.
I have a secret. I’ve saved the best organization tip for last.
Family meetings are the absolute best way that I have found to keep my family on track and to stay on top of everything that needs to be done.
Why Should You Start A Regular Family Meeting
Starting a regularly scheduled family meeting is extremely beneficial to your organizational system.
You will be able to gather everyone together for the sole purpose of organizing your family. Each family member is encouraged to share what they are up too, what they have planned, and their ideas for family agenda items.
As a mom, that truly embraces meal planning it is extremely helpful for me to get ideas for meals from my family.
In addition, they are able to chime in on family vacation planning, other outings, and household issues in general.
The benefit to all of this is that it saves you a HUGE amount of time, especially if you are a weekly planner like I am.
I’d also like to mention, that family meetings are a great way to spend quality time with your family.
Although the meetings should be practical, they should also be a fun. We’ll talk a little more about this later.
How To Get Started With Family Meetings
To get started with your family meetings, you’ll want to first have a discussion with your family about starting this new tradition.
Perhaps during a family dinner, you can introduce to the topic and explain why you think having a family meeting would be beneficial. You could also identify a specific day and time to start.
Once you’ve established your start date, you can move forward with planning out your agenda. Also, don’t feel as though you can’t change up the date. We all experience different seasons in life and therefore things change. Plan for flexibility with this.
Putting together your family meeting agenda is probably the most important part of the process. You’ll want to include items that will keep your family organized and consistent.
Some agenda items that you may want to consider include:
- Meal Plans (weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly)
- Family Activities
- Family Routines (including chore charts)
- Calendar Events
- Home Projects
- School/Work Items
- Family Issues/Concerns
- Inspiration/Encouragement (for every family member)
These are just a few examples, you can include any topics that you think will be needed for your unique family.
A good idea may be to survey the family during the very first meeting to get their input on topic ideas.
Once you’ve identified your agenda topics you can begin to gather supplies that you’ll need for your first family meeting.
Here’s what you will need:
- Binder (three-ring binder or disc-bound system)
- Hole punch
- Monthly/Weekly calendar
- Sticky notes
- Coloring pages for younger children
- Stickers (optional)
Once you’ve gathered all of your supplies, keep them all together in a basket or tote bag. This way your family meeting is an easy grab-n-go activity.
You’re all set for your very first meeting!!
Here are a few tips to help you have a pleasant, productive, and successful event.
- Be prepared/start on time
- Don’t go over one hour
- Give family members a position (keeping an eye on the time, taking notes, etc.)
- Include a quick activity
- Allow and encourage everyone to share their opinions
Providing each family member with an “official” role or position during the meeting will be both fun for everyone as well as help the meeting to move along smoothly.
- Note Taker (records decisions made during the meeting)
- Archivist (keeps all forms and photos updated and current)
- Time Keeper (keeps the meeting moving on time)
- Officiator (lead and conducts the meeting)
- Voting Conductor (conducts all voting matters)
- Planner Manager (keeps up with the actual planner and makes sure all forms are available and in their proper place).
Want some SUPER CUTE pre-made badges for your family meeting? I’ve created some fun badges that you can use to assign these important roles. There are also six blank badges for you to customize.
These are some of the suggested positions that you can choose from. You can totally create your own positions depending on your need.
One very important part of the meeting that I haven’t discussed yet is the fun factor.
You’re going to want to make this meeting a fun event that your family will look forward too.
One thing that you can do to increase the fun factor is to schedule a fun activity immediately following your meeting. Your family will be thankful for this quality time after all of their hard work.
Our family usually enjoy our “family fun night” activity immediately following our weekly family meeting. It’s worked out great so far. We will usually go bowling, watch a movie, play a board or video game, or go to a community event.
Getting Younger Children Involved
I know how tempting it is to keep the younger children distracted so that your meeting can run smoothly.
Respectfully, this is a mistake.
Younger children learn SO MANY valuable lessons by participating in these meetings. Here are a few lessons that you will be teaching your children by involving them.
- Active listening skills
- Order/following a program
- Taking turns
- How to respectfully interject
- The value of their opinion
- Life skills
Wow …that’s a pretty heavy duty list right!!!
That’s just the tip of the iceberg. You will also be establishing a valuable family tradition that will serve your children and their children for years to come.
We are teaching our children the value of family. They can practically see how to run a home and manage a family.
In addition, if you keep your collection of family discussions, calendar pages, decorated pages, and photos you will end up with an AMAZING keepsake for everyone to enjoy.
I truly hope that you have enjoyed this series as much as I have. Not only did I have a ton of fun putting it together but also was able to get completely organized and ready for back-to-school season. Please let me know if you found this series helpful for your family below in the comments.
Also, if you found this information helpful please share on your social media platforms!
Blessings, and Happy Homemaking!