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Printable back-to-school downloads

Going back to school and adjusting to new routines can be tricky for kids who learn and think differently — and for you. But having the right tools can make it easier. Use these back-to-school downloads to start the school year off right.

Download: Back-to-school introduction letters

How can you help your child get the school year off to a good start? Giving an introduction letter to the teacher is a great option. A back-to-school letter helps the teacher get to know your child’s strengths and what your child needs help with.

These letters are set up in a way so kids can fill them out on their own (or with a little help from you). There’s one for older kids and one for younger kids. You can use the one for older kids as a guide to write a more traditional letter, if you and your child prefer.

Introduction Letter for Grade-Schoolers

Introduction Letter for Middle-Schoolers

Download: School contact lists

Are you unsure who to contact at your child’s school? Knowing which staff member to contact can save you time and energy. Use these school contact lists to get organized.

Who to contact about different issues at school

Who is the right staff member to talk to about trouble with field trips? Graduation planning? Discipline concerns? This download explains who to reach out to about different issues at school. Print this one-pager and keep it handy.

Contact list for key staff members at your child’s school

This one-page download has spots for you to write down your child’s homeroom teacher, principal, and guidance counselor. It also has spots for other key staff members, like the school psychologist and student services coordinator.

Contact list for your child’s teachers

Older kids will likely have different teachers for each subject. Use this contact list to keep the contact information for all of your child’s teachers in one place.

Download: Backpack checklist

Getting your child’s backpack organized is a feat worth celebrating. But making sure kids put in everything they need for the trip to school and back can take some work. A luggage tag checklist is an easy way to help your child keep track, without it being obvious to other kids.

All you have to do is buy an inexpensive clear luggage tag to attach to the backpack’s zipper pull. Take out the address label and replace it with this printable checklist.

You can customize the “To School” and “To Home” sides. For example, if your child is in the orchestra, add the instrument to the checklist. Or maybe your child wants to make each side a different color. Brainstorm together about ways to make sure your child checks the tag before heading out to school, and again before leaving for home.

Backpack checklist for younger kids

Backpack checklist for older kids

Download: Homework contract for your child

Homework can be a hot-button issue for both you and your child. Setting up a homework contract is a good way to defuse some of that tension and avoid homework battles. It’s also a way to make sure you and your child both know your responsibilities.

Homework contract for grade-schoolers

Homework contract for middle-schoolers and high-schoolers

A homework contract is an agreement that outlines what you and your child will do to make sure homework gets done on time and well. It can help your child develop good study habits and become a more independent learner. Homework contracts can also outline rewards and consequences for kids when they follow or don’t follow their part of the contract.

You can tailor your contract to address your child’s specific homework challenges. For example, if your child struggles with time management, the contract can lay out what time of day the homework needs to be done. Or maybe your child leans on you too much for help. The contract can specify how often and/or how much you’ll help with homework.

Fill out the contract together to make sure your child understands what’s being agreed on. Be sure to revisit the contract as your child’s workload changes or if things aren’t working as you expected.

Download: 3×3 card to help teachers get to know your child

When teachers are familiar with your child’s strengths and challenges, it’s easier for them to help your child succeed. A 3×3 card is a quick way to help teachers get to know your child. This handy card introduces teachers to three of your child’s strengths and challenges — along with three strategies that work for your child.

Simply print the card, fill it out, and share it with your child’s teachers and other school staff who’d benefit from it. You and your child can even fill out the card together.

Creating a 3×3 card is also a great way to help your child learn to self-advocate. Watch as an expert explains.

3×3 card to help get to know your students

Download: How to open a combination lock

Learning how to open a combination lock can be tricky for anyone. But it can be especially tough for kids and adults who have trouble telling left from right.

Not sure which way to turn or how long to keep turning? This list of steps includes arrows as well as specifics on when to switch directions.

Download this “cheat sheet” and come up with a safe place to store it so it won’t get lost or shredded.

Practice at home, where it’s less stressful than a school hallway or locker room. If the combination lock continues to be a struggle, consider asking for a different kind of lock that’s easier to open.

How to Open a Combination Lock

Back-to-school worksheet to start the year strong

Summer is a good time to hit the pause button and think about the past school year. What went well? What was challenging? And what did you learn that can help in the new year?

Parents and caregivers: Help your child get ready to go back to school by filling out this worksheet together.

Educators: Share this worksheet with your students’ families at the start of school or at the end of the school year.

Back-to-school worksheet to start the year strong

Story Credited

Expert reviewed by Bob Cunningham, EdM

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