Make It Better Back-to-School Guide

Give your child the most successful back-to-school launch with our best advice, ideas and tips.

And help keep your school strong with our “Help Your School Toolkit.”


25 Best Apps and Websites for Summer Skill Building
Even though this is a summer list, these apps will keep your little ones learning all year long.

Demystifying Preschools
Navigate the process with this cheat sheet of some of the most popular preschool options.

Raising Creative Kids
The words ‘children’ and ‘creative’ naturally go together. Inspire creativity with these fun tips.


Win the Homework Battle
Encourage your child to create positive homework habits now that will help them succeed later.

Preparing for Your Parent-Teacher Conference
This is a must-read before the next meeting with you child’s teacher.

Elementary School: 10 Things Your Child Can and Should Do
It’s easy to become a little too focused on academics and forget that there is another set of skills our children need to become functioning adults: life skills.


5 Steps to Creating a Cozy Homework Zone
Homework spaces can be carved out of any location in the home—kids’ bedrooms, a family room or a finished basement.

Middle School: 10 Things Your Child Can and Should Do
Once your middle schooler has mastered the life skills mentioned above, they can start developing these valuable skills.

9 Tips to Help Your Child Cope with Stress
Help your child navigate the school year with these 9 strategies to reduce the stress that more challenging schoolwork brings.


Moving From 8th Grade to High School: Advice for the Transition
Scary as it may be, it is possible to survive the fearsome transition from 8th grade to high school—and have a lot of fun along the way!

High-School Textbooks: Avoid the Sticker Shock

The first day of school is just around the corner, and for many parents, the cost of high-school textbooks makes us long for the day when we complained about the cost of 6th grade school supplies.

Reducing the Stress of College Admissions
Is the stress of college applications hitting you hard? Here are a few ways to ease the stress during the process.

Is ACT and SAT Test Prep Right for Your Child?
Save yourself some money, and find out which standardized test is best for your high-school student.


What to Pack for College (and What to Leave at Home)
Make sure your college freshman packs these often overlooked, but important items for dorm life.

A Parents Guide to Greek Life
Need a little refresher on Greek life today? Here’s an inside look!

Tips to Make The Most of College Visits 
Especially if you’re visiting a bunch of schools this fall, these insider tips will ensure you make each visit worth your while.

Big Ten College Town Tours: A Parents Eye Point of View
Find great places to eat and stay and landmarks to check out to get the full experience while visiting Big Ten colleges.

From Those in the Know: College Students Advice for Freshmen
Pass this fun video along to your soon-to-be college freshman.


The Push to Play: Kids, Sports and Competition
Are you your kid’s biggest superfan?

The 5 Sports Your Kids Should Try
Sign up your little one for any of these 5 fun sports—who knows, maybe they’ll discover a new favorite!

4 Tips for Raising Scholars and Athletes
Help your kids find success in both school and sports with these tips from some of the area’s top athletes.

College Sports Recruiting Year By Year Admission Tips
Hoping to become a collegiate athlete? Check out these tips for all grades on how to make you stand out to college recruiters.


Empowering the Bystander: Give Your Kid the Courage to Stand Up to Bullying
Whether passive or active, willing or unwilling, a bystander is a participant in the bullying. Only when we teach and empower our kids to stand up and speak out can we break the cycle.


Back-to-School Fashion for Kids
School’s almost back in session, which means it’s time to start studying up on what’s fashionable for your kids.

11 Best Back-to-School Bags
Start off your school year in fashion with the latest trends in bags!

Saving Money on Back-to-School Clothing
Fashion doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg—here’s how to save.


Make Your School Better Toolkit
Schools count on and actively encourage parents to get involved in their child’s education. Here’s how to get started.

Local Resources

These categories from our Better List have lots of useful companies and organizations for Back to School help.

Education Resources, including counseling, gap year, private consultants and tutors

Extracurricular Activities


Internet Resources

Back to School at includes resources for parents, students and educators.

Back to School Transition Tips from the National Association of School Psychologists

Homework Help—National Geographic offers a homework help search for answering geography and science questions.

Books, Articles and Publications

The Kissing Hand, by Audrey Penn

Mrs. Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten, by Joseph Slate

A Smart Girl’s Guide to Starting Middle School by American Girl

The Little Talked About Secret to Back-to-School Readiness, Christine Bronstein, Band of Wives

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