A large chunk of parenthood is about communication: With your partner, your kids, other parents, teachers, coaches, you name it. And too often, mishaps pop-up and communication goes wonky — especially this time of year, when it seems like there are more class parties, more performances and sports play-offs, more holiday schedule changes, more why didn’t anyone tell me about the Election Day bake sale last week?
Oh, and those last-minute snow day alerts and cancellations will be here before me know it.
This is where the SimplyCircle app comes in. I think it’s worth a look because it can really make your life way way easier as a parent.
SimplyCircle is an easy-to-use, free group communications app and website (formerly called SchoolCircle) that lets you coordinate between school, home and beyond. It essentially combines group email (which we so love) with the personal interaction of a private social network. And while its new iteration is still pretty much geared toward school groups, it’s super helpful in other ways, too, since you can send group updates and automatic reminders, create events, and post documents and pictures to your secure circle — whether it’s your kid’s Scout Troop or the parents in your hockey carpooling group.
The photo features is great too; how many times have you wanted to pool parent photos of the school field trip or the first-grade musical but didn’t really decide on one central place to do it so they never really got shared? Well, you can do it here.
I like that you don’t have to sign into the SimplyCircle app to read the emails sent to the group. Although for everyone to be fully part of the group experience, you do need to accept the free invite that you send out. And yeah, sometimes getting people to do just that can be a bit annoying. It’s also why folks often gravitate to other, easier, more seamless group communication and school organizational apps like our longtime fave VolunteerSpot.
Even if converting your school groups here is a huge challenge, I can definitely see the app coming in handy when managing the family’s busy schedule, thanks in part to the central dashboard. that’s where you can track of events and tasks, organize volunteer signups, and even send one-on-one messages to certain folks in the group.
Like Susan is such a slacker! Do you notice who she always signs up to only bring in plastic forks?
No, kidding. Our goal is to be a little better than our kids on that front.
Another aspect I really like is getting the Weekly Planner email with an overview of all your appointments and to-dos coming up, to really help parents stay a step ahead. And ideally, never caught off-guard by the classic the bake sale starts five minutes ago surprise moment. Again.