Sep 21
Parenting Corner – My Kids Keep Forgetting Their School Stuff!

Q: My kids are constantly forgetting stuff they need for school and because I work from home they call expecting me to drop it off. It’s really frustrating for me to drive back and forth but I feel bad they don’t have what they need when I know I can bring it to them. What can I do to teach them to be in charge of what they need each day?

A. Great question! This is a common complaint I hear from Moms. Regardless of whether you work from home, you’re a stay at home Mom or you work full time; you are not teaching your children personal responsibility by driving their forgotten items to school. It’s important to remember we teach people how to treat us; what starts off as a kind gesture from you can easily turn into an expectation from them and it sounds like that’s where you are now. Rest assured, I’m not totally heartless–I give my kids one free pass each year that I will drop off a forgotten item, but after they use it, they know I’m not coming to school regardless of what they forgot.

The benefits of not bringing forgotten items to school are two-fold for your kids – #1 it forces them to be resourceful in figuring a way to survive without the items (this includes lunch and cell phone – trust me when I say my kids don’t go hungry and they find a way to call/text me) and #2 it teaches them they have to be responsible for themselves. The key is knowing that the learning doesn’t end with the incident. I talk with my kids about what “systems for success” they need to help them remember in the future. In elementary school they created and I laminated multiple checklists strategically placed for them to reference throughout the day – one was on the door they exited before school, they had a second checklist in their backpack and a final checklist at their light switch before bed to help prepare for the next day. As they got older they came up with their own systems – my daughter lays her clothes out the night before and my son piles his needed items at the door of his bedroom to be grabbed before getting on the bus.

Our job as parents is not to make it easy for our kids but to teach them the lessons they need to succeed in life. The younger you begin these lessons the more resourceful they will become and successful they will feel as they get older.


laughingLaura Treonze, serves as Chief Life Strategist with LMT Consulting, which helps executives and teams create massive success through self-awareness. Her life-changing approach has transformed individuals and families and has redefined the way non-profits and corporations “do” business.