Just like everyone else, our back-to-school checklist looks a lot different this year. Since none of our kids are going to school in person (at least not yet: the younger three are working towards a hybrid schedule and I really hope they get to get into school, even if for just a week or two), we don't even need to stock up on face masks and sanitizer yet.
But we still have five students (ages 10-19) starting their school years learning remotely all under one roof. So what are our family's back-to-school "must haves" this year?
1. Noise cancelling headphones for the college freshman with a downstairs bedroom, a noisy family and an intense workload.
2. Frozen burritos and packages of ramen noodles for the two college students to have an easy, quick lunch option as well at the illusion of a more regular college experience.
3. A steady stream of easy-to-grab snacks for all five students.
4. Two new desks and sneaky spots to squeeze them into for improved work stations. Last spring's quickly put-together folding table in the family room got the job done but wasn't sustainable.
5. A Mom who has offered her services to the children to not be entirely at their beck and call, but very willing to help them fetch that snack or burrito, find them a charging cord or refill their water bottles. Because while they may have their nooks and technology and amazing teachers doing the best they can under the circumstances, remote learning just isn't anybody's favorite around here. Since I can't do anything to change the situation, I can grab that granola bar for them.