As the new school year begins, it brings the start of fundraising and volunteering requests. Your involvement in your child’s class is important – it helps you stay involved in his/her learning and promotes success in school. However, school volunteering can quickly become overwhelming. Check out these tips to make pitching in work for you and your family’s busy schedule:
1. Help from Home: Offer to volunteer remotely updating the class website or Pinterest boards, assembling art supplies or planning class parties.
2. Be Selective: Find a volunteer job you truly enjoy. If you have a green thumb, help in the school garden; if you love to read, volunteer to be a reading buddy or staff the book fair. Time will fly when you’re having fun!
3. Stay Organized: Never forget when it’s your turn to read to the class, chaperone the field trip or bring snack to soccer. Organize your volunteer activities with free online sign up sheets by VolunteerSpot. Parents quickly choose what they will do or bring from any smartphone or computer, and automated reminders make it really easy to fit volunteering into any busy schedule.
4. Ask Early: At the beginning of the school year, send the teacher a note explaining that you have limited time to volunteer but would like to find a way to help the classroom. This allows the teacher to make suggestions, and together you can find creative ways to pitch in.
5. Find a Balance: Consider the numerous children’s activities needing your time – school, sports, Scout troops, religious education, etc. – and be realistic about how much time you can give. If you’re the class Room Mom this year, perhaps let someone else take a turn as the Scout Troop Leader and sign up instead to bring snacks to shop for a craft.
6. No time? Donate! If you just can’t find the time to volunteer, you can give back in other ways, like clipping Boxtops, cutting out office supply coupons for teachers and contributing to a class project on DonorsChoose.
Meet Your Publisher
As publisher of Macaroni Kid Chicago Midtown, I am looking forward to connecting families to local events and businesses in our community. When I am not out exploring Chicago, I enjoy traveling and making memories with my husband and two children.