Whether it’s their first day of kindergarten or they’re used to the routine, preparing to go to school can be stressful for the whole family. Everything is new and different and it can take some getting used to. Here are some ways you can manage the stress so going back to school is a breeze.

Keep a calendar of all upcoming events. If you already know when parent-teacher conferences are, or what morning school is hosting donuts with dad mark it on your calendar now. Choose different colored pens for each child so you know what’s going on with everyone. Looking over your schedule can help you plan in advance.

If your child is due for a doctor’s appointment or haircut try to schedule it before school starts. It’ll be a lot harder to find the time when summer ends.

Take advantage of tax-free week and coupons when school shopping. Reducing the amount of money you spend on back to school supplies and clothes will also reduce the household stress.

Practice a back to school run through before school starts. Have the little ones gradually get up earlier and earlier the weeks before school until they’re up at the time they’ll need to be for school. Practice walking to the bus stop or drive down to the school to see how much traffic you might face.

If kids are getting up earlier they also need to go to bed earlier. Shut off all electronics and read a story for them to relax before bed.

Get excited! It’s a new year full of friends and fun; celebrate the night before school begins with a cake or special dinner. Make it a festive event.