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What is a bullet journal? It’s going to make back-to-school easier

bullet journal beginner

You might have noticed on Pinterest and Facebook that bullet journals are trending. As the official site describes it, the bullet journal is old-school made new again. It’s the analog system for the digital age. And using this fun form of throwback notation offers a simple way to get the back-to-school madness organized.

The official Bullet Journal site calls it a “customizable and forgiving organization system.” In translation, you can use you and your kids’ bullet journals for anything you darn well please — tracking work meetings, scheduling study sessions, or even recording grades and report cards for the course of the year.

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Bullet journals can also be fun. Kids can use them to track and organize, as well as draw, write notes, or keep a diary. Last year, The Washington Post explained the bullet journal craze as an alternative for people fed up with apps. Better than a Post-it, bullet journal-ing allows you to keep all your self-made to-dos, lists, goals, thoughts, and calendars in one place. Kids (and especially teens) who have been immersed in technology may appreciate this opportunity to create something with their hands.

How to make a back-to-school bullet journal: Supplies

  • Composition notebook or other journal
  • Pen or pencil
  • Markers, colored pencils, or other drawing supplies

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How to make a back-to-school bullet journal: Tutorial

Whether you or your kids lean creative or analytical, the bullet journal is going to make it all make sense. You can help younger kids chart their daily tasks and encourage their creativity through drawing. Older kids and teenagers should be able to master this simplified tracking system themselves.

Back-to-schoolers in need of organization, here’s where to begin:

Get started

1. Gather your supplies. Keep it simple, or get creative with extra scrap booking supplies, like markers, glitter, and stickers.

bullet journal beginner
Image: Bethany Ramos
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2. Start tracking. Use different colors, fonts, and drawings to map out a calendar of the main events for the upcoming school year.

bullet journal beginner
Image: Bethany Ramos

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3. Get academic. Encourage kids to use their bullet journal for practice and memorization, like writing out the multiplication tables.

bullet journal beginner
Image: Bethany Ramos
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4. Make a weekly homework chart. It’s much easier for kids to keep track of their homework schedule when they can list it out by day and class.

bullet journal beginner
Image: Bethany Ramos
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5. Use it to track family activities. Stay on top of things by keeping a daily log of times for school drop-off, nap, lunch, pick-up, homework, and play.

bullet journal beginner
Image: Bethany Ramos
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6. Record progress. Kids who want to try out for sports or learn a new language can use a daily habits chart to track their hours as they reach their goal.

bullet journal beginner
nodigio/Flickr
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7. Make a family planner. Meal plans, weekend activities, and vacation goals can all be charted to keep the house running.

bullet journal beginner
John Uhri/Flickr
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8. When in doubt, draw. Bullet journals are even better when kids express themselves freely. Kids can draw in the margins and on the blank pages and use creative colors to liven up their charts.

bullet journal beginner
María Garrido/Flickr

With a brand-new tracking system in your arsenal, there’s every chance that this school year might actually feel easy. And why mess with a good thing? Getting prequalified without having to leave your house makes buying a new house easy. Keep it simple and download our free app.

For educational purposes only. Please contact your qualified professional for specific guidance.

Sources are deemed reliable but not guaranteed.