It feels like summer has just gotten underway, but there's no doubt about it - school days are right around the corner.

The time has come to start cleaning out book bags, shopping for new notebooks, and picking out that first day of school outfit.  But how do you get the kids to transition from swim suits and flip flops to 3-ring binders and pencil cases?  Here are 5 tips to help your kids get back into school mode.

1. Pick up a book.  If your kids have not been reading all summer, now is the time to crack open a book and get back into reading.  Even if they only read a few pages each day, it will make the transition back to school that much smoother if their brains area already starting to churn.

2. Get them to bed earlier.  The longer and lazier days of summer usually mean later bedtimes for many kids.  Make the first days and weeks of school a little easier but moving bedtime a little earlier each night until it's closer to the school time schedule.

3. Check out your child's school supply list.  The sooner you can find out what school supplies your child will need, the more time you will have to look through your current stash and recycle or reuse what you've got.  Now is the time to catch the deals too for school supplies that you need to purchase.

4. Make time for meal time.  If your kids have gotten used to grazing all summer long, now is a good time to reinforce the meal and snack times they will have at school.  Kids might eat lunch at 10:30 or at 1:30 and it will help keep the growls at bay if you make the transition before the first day.

5. Get organized.  If you have a hard time with this one - trust me, I feel your pain.  But trust me too when I tell you that the more organized you are now, the better off your child's first few weeks of school will be.  Make a place for your kids to stash book bags, a spot for important papers, and a calendar for everyone to write and keep track of important dates.    

Want more back to school help?  Check out these posts:

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