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Setting Life Priorities for a New School Year

Summer is nearly over, and in a few days my older kids head back to school. I’ve been thinking as I set my August goals about setting priorities for a new school year. There are a lot of unknowns – my kids don’t even know who their teachers are yet. With school work consuming a large portion of our days, I’m finding it more important than ever to think about how we are using our time.

Setting Life Priorities for a New School Year

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Besides being fun, puzzles are an often overlooked educational tool. I’ve used puzzles to teach my children about the world. I also love using 4D Cityscape Time puzzles in our history lessons, as they allow children to see how historical events shape cities and countries.

I believe in hands on learning wherever possible, in all school subjects. So when I was offered the chance to review three new Dr. Livingston human body jumbo learning puzzles, I said yes. I knew these puzzles would be fantastic for teaching my children about the human body.

Using Puzzles to Teach Children About the Human Body

How I’m Setting Priorities for a New School Year

One of the things I loved about our month in Scotland was the simpleness of our days. The kids were out of school, and I wasn’t juggling motherhood with side jobs and volunteer work. We weren’t scheduling outside activities, or even (most of the time) play dates with friends. It is nice to be home with our friends and community, but I also want to preserve as much of that relaxed feeling as I can as we head back to school.

How to prioritize life so that we have time for the things that matter most

I loved having very basic goals for July. There is more to juggle in August, so some level of structure is necessary, but I’m keeping life as simple as possible. I want to make sure that we have time for the things that matter most.

August 2016 goals

August 2016 Monthly Goals

As always, goal focus areas are in italics

  • Get as organized as possible before school starts. We will be using the organization system I set in place two years ago, with the addition of the kids packing thier own lunches thanks to this school lunch routineFocus on learning and mindful living.
  • Celebrate Lily, Mike and Anna’s birthdays. Focus on gratitude.
  • Be wise in selecting (or opting out of) extracurricular activities. Focus on mindful living.
  • Spend as much time outside as possible. Focus on gratitude, learning, and mindful living.

What are you hoping to accomplish this August? How are you setting priorities for a new school year?

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MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

13 thoughts on “Setting Life Priorities for a New School Year”

  1. Choosing extracurricular involvement is always a challenge for me. Good luck on planning a relaxed fall.

  2. In theory tomorrow morning I am starting school with the kids. I say in theory because I’m beginning to think I’m coming down with something. Boo to being sick.

  3. We’re not starting a new school year, but after our Thailand trip, I still need to get organized and into a better routine. I’ll get there!

  4. As a teacher getting ready to go back to school and as a mama getting ready to send my oldest off to his first grade year I agree with so many of your goals. Last year having a kiddo in school made me realize how vital it is to pick our after school/extracurricular activities carefully. We need to plan to have down time in the afternoons after our busy school days. I’m looking forward to seeing more about your organization system.

  5. Great goals! I especially love your priority of being wise in extracurricular activities. Even as homeschoolers. it’s so easy to fill our days with events- and not each other. Wishing you a great start to your school year :)

  6. Natalie PlanetSmartyPants

    I cannot believe that school starts so soon (August 18th for us). We also had a very relaxed summer, but, boy, I am ready for some structure :) Happy upcoming birthday to your August crowd :)

  7. The kids are getting so big! My main goal for August is to not pass out in the heat. LOL! It’s been a hot and humid July and I’m afraid August will be worse!

    We still homeschool and started back in late June. Monday will be our 6th week.

    1. That is great – the homeschooling, not the hot weather. I hope you get a break soon. It has only been warm here, but without AC that gets old quickly. We loved a month of genuinely cool weather in Scotland earlier this summer!

  8. Elisa | blissful E

    Love the photos in this post. So glad you are making it a priority to keep things simple.

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