There's more to getting your family ready for the new school year than buying school supplies.

Aisles at Acadiana stores are clogged with people taking advantage of the back to school sales in the mad rush to check everything off the list before the new school year begins in a little over a week. As many a parent will tell you, securing supplies is just one part of the transition from summer freedom to school - year routine. The following tips will help in covering all your bases and preparing not only your kids for school, but yourself as well.

  • Getty Images
    Getty Images


    Louisiana state law requires children to receive immunizations based on age. Click here to determine what immunizations are required by law and other information.

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    TNS via Getty Images

    Adjust bedtimes now

    Even older kids need to begin the shift from those late nights and late rises over the summer months. Decide on the bedtime you feel is appropriate and then require no stimulation up to an hour before that time, including video games and any time on any other electronic devices.

    Which brings us to...

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    MCT via Getty Images

    Set Aside Face To Face Time

    While there's lots more time for quality family time over the summer, busy lives can lead to a rut of meals in front of the TV followed by everyone burying their faces in a phone or other kind of screen.

    Putting aside time for face to face time without those distractions is a great way to check in with your kids each day. Studies show that spending time fully focused on your children with eye contact actually helps them develop better social skills and a greater sense of their own self - worth. This one hour before bed with no other distractions would be a great time for a board game, reading with your children (yes, even older kids still enjoy reading with their parents!) and prayers before bed.

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    MCT Graphics via Getty Images

    Synchronize Your Schedules

    School activities during and after the school day, athletic practices and events, field trips and picture days and more. Those are just a few of the seemingly - countless activities that occur throughout a school year, and that's not taking into account work responsibilities,  family activities and just spending time together at home. There are number of calendar syncing apps out there that can help sync your many different calendars so everyone's on the same page.

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    Photothek via Getty Images

    A Time And Place For Homework

    Lots of kids do their homework at the kitchen table, and while there's nothing wrong with that, it's best to create a space that's only used for homework and nothing else. It can as easy a buying an end table and leaving the drawers out to create a small corner desk, or setting up the family computer room or area as the only place homework can be done. An inexpensive dry erase board mounted on the wall can encourage your kids to do their work on a larger canvas than a sheet of looseleaf or worksheet.

    Creating a mood with soothing music that's only listened to during homework time is also a great idea; Mozart's music in particular has been scientifically proven to have positive effects on mental ability and serotonin levels in the brain.

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    Fairfax Media via Getty Images

    Back To School Photos

    We've taken pics of our now 11 and 9 - year old girls on the first day of each school year, which has become a popular tradition on Facebook. Pinterest has lots of creative ideas to help put a new spin on your annual back to school photos.

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    Bettmann Archive

    Bus Schedules

    Click here to find the full calendars for all Acadiana schools and other information like bus schedules and routes.

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    Corbis/VCG via Getty Images

    After School Enrichment

    There are arguments that say kids today are too busy and counter - arguments that say being busy is better than being idle and not productive. As a former teacher, I believe that the heart of the issue is making sure kids understand that their value is not related to achievement.

    I also believe that many kids today are so busy with school - related extracurricular activities and athletics that they don't take time for personal enrichment activities. This ranges from taking up an instrument to finding and devoting time to a hobby. Helping kids to have a truly - balanced lifestyle includes encouraging them to take time for themselves in healthy and life - giving ways that don't only involve social media or video games.

  • UIG via Getty Images
    UIG via Getty Images

    Update Emergency Contact And Medical Information

    This seems like a no - brainer, but we get so busy at the start of the school year that we sometimes overlook the importance of providing the most up - to - date contact and medical information to our children's schools.

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    Help other kids with school supplies

    You may have taken care of securing your kids' school supplies, but there are many children in the Acadiana area who can't afford the supplies they need to flourish this coming school year. Click here, here, and here to find our how you can help.

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