Back to School: Where to store kids school bags + an after school routine

by Katrina - The Organised Housewife

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Do most kids love to dump their bags on the floor and head straight for the telly and just leave mum to unpack the bags? Create a routine and good habits after school, so that your kids can help you more.  A routine is so important if they are starting school. Teach them great habits from the start, so that they grow with good habits.  Remember, if you do it for them, they will expect you to continue doing it and they are perfectly capable of unpacking their own bag.  My kids have followed this routine that’s listed below since they each started prep, and learnt that their bag was their own responsibility from the very beginning. Here are 20+ practical school bag storage ideas, because if they have a place to put their school bag, they’re most likely to put them away every afternoon.

Our afternoon routine

  1. Remove shoes and place on shoe rack in garage.
  2. Take off socks while still in the garage as they are usually filled with sand and bark which I don’t want through the house.
  3. Take lunchboxes and drink bottles out of school bags and place them on the kitchen bench ready for cleaning that evening.
  4. All certificates received go directly on the fridge.
  5. Paperwork sent home from school (rare as we have a paperless school and receive everything on email), will be clipped to the fridge.  Anything clipped to the fridge needs priority attention.
  6. Homework books go onto the dining table ready for them to start after they have had a bite to eat. Home readers are put into their boxes.
  7. Place bags on bag hooks.
  8. Then some afternoon tea and chat about what school was like.
  9. Next, time to start homework. Read my tips on how to get children to do their homework.
  10. Once finished, homework is placed in their boxes.
  11. Followed by 10 min on the computer homework tasks.
  12. Now it’s either time to go to our after-school sports session, or relax by watching some TV or outside playing, whichever they please.  We don’t allow computer games or Xbox during the week.

Idea’s on how to store school bags

Prior to what we have now, I used 3M hooks on the wall which were perfectly capable of holding heavy school bags, however, I wanted to fancy up the wall so I purchased MDF Initials of each child, plus created one for myself. I painted and covered in scrapbooking paper, inserted a hook to hold the school bags and viola, we have a fancy bag storage system.  We store their bags near the garage door because it’s a great wall that’s hidden from the rest of the house and is perfect to also store their library bags at.

Other storage places

  • In their wardrobe.
  • A hook on bedroom wall.
  • On bedroom door knob.
  • In a basket by the garage door.
  • Where ever you choose, but make sure the bag is always returned to the designated home.

Where do you store your school bags?

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20 comments

Alicia Ilievski January 11, 2011 - 7:45 PM

I looooove those hooks Kat. Look fantastic. Both my kids initials are the same LOL. Will work out well for such things as school hats etc (Can be a cheapo and reuse luchboxes etc) Might just do different paper derrrr LOL.

Love it! Feeling inspired just need your energy…..PS do you sleep?

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Katrina January 13, 2011 - 8:08 AM

yes I sleep but didn't get to bed a few nights ago till 2am as I was trying to comment to everybodies posts and emails 🙂 where I purchased the mdf from http://www.mdfmagic.com.au they also sell shapes like castle, hearts, cars, trains etc you could get a shape instead of initials.

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Kathy G January 11, 2011 - 7:47 PM

Lovin' the hooks – they're awesome!!! I dare say that I might find bags UNDER the hooks as my kids have an 'almost there' habit which drives me NUTS!!!!! Keep the posts coming – glad I'm not the only one who is thrilled by organisation!

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Katrina January 13, 2011 - 8:12 AM

Thanks Kathy!! Just teach them they need to go on the hooks, or be brutal – stop them from playing or watching TV (just example) ask them to complete the job properly, if they don't do it the next day, turn off the TV get them to complete the job, then they can read a book or finish their homework (not return to what they were doing), remind them that if they don't go on the hook tomorrow you will do the same, no TV or playing outside. (I know that sounds mean, but you are trying to teach them to do a job properly, if you keep picking up after them they will always expect it!!!)

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Marita January 11, 2011 - 7:49 PM

Oooh I like those hooks. Our school bags get emptied out and put in a cupboard on the kitchen so they are out of sight.

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Shar January 11, 2011 - 8:00 PM

Love the hooks! My problem is though that 2 of my children are high schoolers and my hubby refuses to have hooks for their bags due to weight. Any ideas would be gratefully appreciated 😀

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Katrina January 13, 2011 - 8:15 AM

I can imagine that high school bags are alot heavier…hmm….I would create a space on the cupboard floor, find a basket to match their room and place under their desk for the bag to go into, have an area in the garage for a super dooper hook, as when they finish school I am sure you will find great use for the hook like storing extention cords, rope etc. Hope I was of some help 🙂

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Tammy January 11, 2011 - 8:41 PM

Great ideas there.

Love the hooks.

My children just drop their things where they feel is needed and I then bellow at them to move it!!

Often takes a bit to get done.

Think this mum of 7 needs to start coming down on them – especially seeing the youngest is 7!!

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Katrina January 13, 2011 - 8:17 AM

Tammy, I just replied to another reader with this advise, it may help??? Just teach them they need to go on the hooks, or be brutal – stop them from playing or watching TV (just example) ask them to complete the job properly, if they don’t do it the next day, turn off the TV get them to complete the job, then they can read a book or finish their homework (not return to what they were doing), remind them that if they don’t go on the hook tomorrow you will do the same, no TV or playing outside. (I know that sounds mean, but you are trying to teach them to do a job properly, if you keep picking up after them they will always expect it!!!)

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Jill January 12, 2011 - 12:05 AM

We have shelves in our laundry for the kids bags. It works well too. I look forward to tomorrow's pot about homework box, I want to sort something out better for this year

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Katrina January 18, 2011 - 10:04 PM

so sorry Jill, the homework boxes post was delayed, but it will be up this thursday

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samone January 12, 2011 - 1:15 AM

great post! just what I was after. Now for tomorrow – we really need advice on how to organise what comes home that needs to go back (thanks in advance)

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Katrina January 18, 2011 - 10:05 PM

The homework boxes post was delayed, sorry Samone, it will be published on Thursday…hope you find some great ideas!!

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Chelle January 12, 2011 - 1:48 AM

I have just put 3M hooks in the kids new rooms right inside their doors with a click 3M for their hats to click onto.

I do adore what you have created..

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Katrina January 18, 2011 - 10:05 PM

Your onto it Chelle, so very proud of the efforts you are putting in!!!

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Jarhyli January 17, 2011 - 6:54 PM

I love all of your ideas, you are soooo clever 🙂 The Letter Hooks are wonderful!! I am probably blind, but noticed you wrote on step "7. Home readers are put into their boxes (see tomorrows post for more information)." Just wondering if someone can point me in the right direction please?

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Katrina January 17, 2011 - 8:06 PM

LOL, sorry Jarhyli, I didn't get time to type up the post as I was drawn to the TV with the flood disaster in QLD worried about friends. It will come this week 🙂

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Jarhyli January 18, 2011 - 7:52 AM

Oh Katrina I do hope all your friends are all safe xoxo I can wait for the post, thanks for letting me know as I was searching thinking I had gone nutty (not hard for me LOL) ?

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MeredithT January 10, 2012 - 9:37 PM

Very nice. Did you notice that (backwards) your initials are alphabetical? Wow, you sure are organised! :oP

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KateGi January 8, 2013 - 9:48 PM

At the top of the stairs from our garage is a little alcove about 2400mm x 1800mm (8 feet by 6 feet). You come up the stairs and turn 180 degrees to the right and you’re in the entrance to the alcove. Along the wall between the stairs and the alcove are some storage units. About 5 years ago (while we were still living in our previous house) I went to Ikea and bought 2 of their cheapest 2×2 cube storage units – Hajedby I think they were called, though they are no longer available. They are similar to Expedit except they don’t have the thick frame that Expedit does, and they only cost $35 each – much cheaper than Expedit! The wall on the other side of the alcove contains a pair of sliding glass doors leading to a small covered patio, and along the back of the alcove are 2 x 106cm H x 80cm W Billy bookcases, each with 2 extra shelves; these are our shoe shelves & each family member has his/her own designated shelves. Back to the storage units, which are used for the kids’ bags. I have two children and their school bags go in the top left (DS’s) and top right (DD’s) spaces. You’re probably wondering why two children need eight bag spaces! Well, the other six spaces are labelled with the days of the week (apart from Sunday as we don’t have any extra-curricular activities on Sundays) and each space is filled with whichever extra-curricular bag is needed that day e.g. ballet bag, jazz & tap bag, swimming bag(s), gymnastics bag, &c. Their piano music and music case lives in the same room as the piano (so they can PRACTISE!) so on the day they have their lessons there is a large notice in the space which reminds them to ensure they have their music with them. We almost always go to extra-curricular activities straight from school, so each morning they put on their school shoes and hats, take their school bag out and put their lunchbox in it, pick up any other bag(s) in the relevant day’s space and they’re good to go. Each afternoon / evening they bring in their bags, take off their school shoes (on the outside patio because of sand and bark chips – SNAP!!! 🙂 and put them away on one of their shoe shelves, then put their hats on the top of the storage units, unpack their bags, and put lunchboxes in the kitchen, homework on the dining table, dirty socks and (if applicable) gym or dance wear or wet swimming gear in the laundry, and wash their hands. The extra-curricular bag they brought home goes back in that day’s space, or, if the activity is repeated later in the week, in the appropriate day’s space. Later in the evening they also get their things ready for the next day: homework due the next day into school bags and the relevant extra-curricular bag is checked to make sure everything required is in it.

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