Back-to-school Ikea hacks to tame the weekday rush

Ensure everything runs smoothly as the kids head back to school. Whether it’s back to school or just back to routine, the working week can leave the high-traffic areas in your home suffering from major congestion.

We spoke to Tabitha Krygsman, interior designer at Ikea Australia, for her top tips on how to keep these zones running smoothly no matter how busy your household.

Clever wall storage solutions in your hallway will help you to stay on top this year. Picture: Ikea

Back to school: Tabitha’s top five organisation tips:

1. Establish a weekly planner

A great way to help keep stress levels down and keep track of what’s happening and when is to set up a weekly planner so everyone knows what’s ahead for the day. It’s also a helpful way to keep track of assignments and activities.

Create the look using the VÄGGIS noticeboards, S$9.99. Picture: Ikea

The weekly organiser can be a place where everyone can write, draw or pin their activities for each day. You might find it just as handy to keep track of all those after-school activity pick-ups and drop-offs, too.

TIP: Consider adding a place for smartphone or tablet charging, too.

2. Create a bag packing station

Starting the new term means lots of new activities – and lots of stuff to go along with it. To help stay organised, a good idea is to put together a getting ready space by your front door.

It’ll also help with school bags that are often dumped on arrival but can’t be found when it’s time to leave again. One solution is to make a bag packing and unpacking station.

Think about setting it up with low, easy-to-reach hooks for bags and coats, a spot to put on and store shoes and drawers to catch extra gear like sporting items, keys or extra clothes.

The LIXHULT cabinet (S$65) is a fun option as you can store things in it and on top of it. It comes in different shapes and sizes, too. Have fun! Picture: Ikea

3. Add storage solutions for everyday items

It’s a pretty common dilemma – shoes often find their way over the floor, even if you have racks to store them in. Consider using baskets near the front door that roll out so that shoes can be kicked off super easily, or keys, phones, wallets and teddy bears can be dumped.

Why stop at shoes? Whether it’s a sun hat, jumper or raincoat, a height-adjustable spot for each family member’s clothes and accessories makes it easier for them to find.

The ALGOT mesh basket (S$8) is perfect and can be used as a single storage box or as part of a larger wall-mounted storage solution. Personalise it to suit your family’s preferred activities. Picture: Ikea

4. Set up a dedicated snack zone

When tired and hungry kids come home from school, it’s best to have as clear a path to the snacks as possible. That can be as simple as a few baskets hung from a rail.

This way you can also ensure you have the right foods out to snack on, removing the temptation for sweeter treats. Consider having one for fruits, one for water or drinks and one with a mixed selection of their favourite healthy snacks.

Another idea is to add a hanging basket with lunches at the ready by the door, so everyone can take their lunch as they leave home. You can also keep some snacks there for home time, too.

Another option is the RISATORP basket (S$12.90). Picture: Ikea

5. Devise an imagination tent

After all the organising and activities, it’s just as important that kids have a place they can relax, unwind and entertain themselves.

A calm space to hang out at the end of the day doesn’t just help to recharge from busy new school routines, but can also help kids sleep better. Any comfy corner will do; just add cushion, games, toys and books – whatever will make it inviting.

Devise a relaxing space where the kids can go post school to let their imagination roam wild. Picture: Ikea

Article repurposed from Back-to-school Ikea hacks to tame the weekday rush by Kristy Barratt. Author at