Green and Healthy Back to School Tips and Hacks

A green and healthy Back to School season is easier (and in many cases cheaper) than you might think. Here’s an essential roundup of our favorite healthy back to school tips and resources for this upcoming school year:

Green & Healthy Back to School Roundup

For many parents, a new school year signifies the passing of time far more powerfully than changing the calendar on January 1st.

Whether it’s our baby starting kindergarten or our teen heading to high school, we tend to prepare ourselves for the big ones. But those smaller leaps can hit us unexpectedly.

Realizing your 3rd grader is halfway through elementary school is enough to send the calmest parent into a panic that time is passing far too quickly.

Add in the tasks of getting back into a routine, meal planning, organizing things that were neglected over the summer, plus nerves about the transition… and you might find the whole family on an emotional rollercoaster.

Every family is different, but what works for us is giving ourselves plenty of grace. So while you’ll find plenty of green back to school tips and advice in this roundup, I hope you’ll also spend some time enjoying the articles on family activities and ways to put simple routines in place for your mornings, packing lunches, and planning dinners.

Most of all, let this list be a guide you come back to when you have time and space.  Don’t be overwhelmed.  And if you have resources that have made your back to school journey simpler, please share them in the comments!

Back to School Tips for Planning and Routines 

The best way to feel in control of a situation is to have a plan in place. These articles offer helpful advice on getting the new school season off to a great start AND maintaining a routine that keeps things running smoothly throughout the year.

How to Create Reassuring Routines for Back to School, Homeschool, or Distance Learning

Getting Back into the School Groove: Routine Success Tips – Kelly Bartlett

10 Tips to Help Your Child Adjust to School – AhaParenting

9 Tips for Homeschooling & Working Full Time – Amity Hook-Sopko

Rhythms, Routines, & Rituals – Amanda Witman

Get Organized! Curating School Papers & Artwork

Guided Relaxation Scripts to Help Your Child Sleep – ShambalaKids

Back to School Shopping in Second-hand Style

Our Customizable Personal Planner

Taking Charge of Chaos: Organizing a Family Command Center

Helping Your Child Get a Good Night’s Sleep

How to Capture the Best First-Day-of-School Photos – SmugMug

Meal Planning 101 – Kim Corrigan-Oliver

Green Child’s Free Printable Meal Planner

Learning & Growing

Education should be about the whole child. Encouraging their lifelong love of learning, keeping those curiosity fires burning, and raising caring young people who grow up to make a difference – that’s what these articles focus on.

How to Boost Your Child’s Memory & Attention Span – Michele Smarty

30+ Educational, Mindfulness & Arts Resources for Kids

Think it Through: Helping Your Child Develop Critical Thinking Skills – Kelly Bartlett

Learning & the Natural World

Encouraging Your Child’s Natural Love of Learning

Individualized Learning: One Style Doesn’t Fit All

Rain or Shine: Students learning in nature all day, every day – Linda McGurk

Nature-inspired Art Projects + Making Your Own Paints & Brushes – Leah Mebane

Finding an Authentic Montessori School

Rethinking Our Approach to the Notion of “Fitting In” – Dr. Shefali Tsabary

Grace & Courtesy: Helping children learn self-discipline

Healthy Lunch Inspiration

Those lunches don’t pack themselves! But once you get a system going, healthy lunches are so easy you can make them even on the busiest of mornings.

Healthy School Lunch Tips, 21 Days of Lunch Ideas, Sustainable Gear & More!

How to Choose Waste-Free Lunch Supplies

How packing a waste-free lunch could save your family $400 a year

Find our Pinterest board filled with healthy lunch ideas & recipes: Lunchbox Inspiration

Environmental Issues & Green Fundraising

No matter which type of school your child attends, they’ll be fundraising at some point. Our most impactful advice is – just donate money and forego the candles, wrapping paper, or other clutter you probably don’t need. But if you’re motivated to get involved, here are some ways you can encourage a less wasteful perspective when it comes to fundraisers. You’ll also find ways to encourage your child’s school to go green and serve healthier lunches.

School Incentives That Aren’t Junk Food or Junk Toys

School Fundraisers: Giving Kids a Choice

10 Eco-Friendly Fundraising Ideas to Kick Off the School Year – Anna Hackman

Bringing Environmental Issues into the Classroom – Tanyette Colon

How to Start a School Garden

Creating a Cleaner & Greener Classroom – Elise Jones

Healthy Green Roundup of Resources and Articles for Back to School

Homeschool / Unschool Resources

Is Homeschooling Right for Your Family? – Anne Michelsen

The Beginner’s Guide to Unschooling – ZenHabits

Think it Through: Helping Your Child Develop Critical Thinking Skills – Kelly Bartlett

Building Critical Thinking Skills Workbooks

TED Education Lessons

Kahn Academy Learning Resources

Coursera Learning Resources

10 Things Every New Homeschooler Should Know – SimpleHomeschool

Nature-inspired Art Projects + Making Your Own Paints & Brushes – Leah Mebane

Learning & the Natural World

Encouraging Your Child’s Natural Love of Learning

Learning at Home – Kerry McDonald

Individualized Learning: One Style Doesn’t Fit All


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