I love the excitement that comes with going back to school. You may not know, but I taught 2nd grade for years before I decided to stay home when Evie was born.  The start of a new school year for teachers is busy but fun (until about November and then you’re ready to pull your hair out 🤣) I loved the weeks leading up to early September when I’d get my room together, shop for supplies, and plan my curriculum.  I couldn’t wait to meet my newest batch of little loves and looked forward to creating a safe and welcoming space for them year after year.

As a kid, I LOVED back to school time.  Getting my new backpack, trying on new clothes at the Nordstrom Sale, and that epic trip to Target for all the school supplies.  I remember racing right up to my room and laying everything out and organizing it all.  Dividers in the binders, pencil box filled, etc.  It was the best. My mom creating special traditions for us was a huge part of that, and I love that I get to continue them with my own kids.

Now, as a mom, I have mixed feelings about back to school time.  On one hand, I’m super ready for Evie to go back to school.  Trying to work with both kids at home all day is not easy.  However, the other part of me loves to freedom in our schedule.  No huge commitments, adventures whenever we want, and it gives me false hope that she is still little.

Miss Evie starts kindergarten this year, and although we started some fun traditions last year for preschool, I’ve got more up my sleeve for this BIG year!  I’m excited to share them with you too so you can start your own traditions this year!

5 Ways to Celebrate Going Back to School

1. A Visit from the Back to School Fairy

Think tooth fairy rules, but back to school fairy.  A week or so before school starts, write a note with encouraging words and best wishes to your little one starting school. Place it in their room with a sprinkle of confetti for them to wake up to in the morning. You can also include a small present…or have their backpack packed with all new school supplies, new lunch box, their favorite character water bottle, or a new board game that will be waiting for you to play with them when they get home from their first day.

2. Celebrate School Year’s Eve

This one is one of my favorites and something we started last year!  It was a BLAST! A fun, easy way to gear up and boost excitement for what’s to come tomorrow.  Have some treats (maybe an ice cream sundae bar!), noise makers, poppers and celebrate saying goodbye to summer, and hello to the school year! Last year we made our own pizzas, had ice cream sundaes and surprised Evie with her new backpack- a unicorn one she has seen at the store and wanted SO bad.

3. Treat your new student to a special breakfast!

This gives you time to sit down, discuss the details of the day, and ensure they get a full belly.  Growing up, the special occasion breakfast for my sister and I was always bacon, strawberries, and powdered sugar donut holes!

Other Breakfast Ideas:

  • Yogurt, peanut butter, and honey dip (½ cup yogurt, ¼ cup peanut butter, 1 tbsp honey-whisk together) for fruit or strips of toast
  • Baked french toast- there are tons of recipes online (our favorite).  I love this because you make it the night before and just bake it off in the morning!

4. Photo Album

You’ve got to do the traditional front of the door first day of school pic! Once you’ve got that, use it to create a little back to school album!  On one side of the album, place the picture with the grade they are starting. On the other side, glue in a piece of blank paper.  Have your student write their name and draw a picture. Each year you will see how their writing and artistic skills blossomed!

You can also write larger milestones that happened through the year on the paper:

  • The year they learned how to read
  • Their first public speaking presentation
  • When they started a sport
  • Their first school concert
  • So many ideas!

5. A Warm Welcome Home

Your little one is going to have a BLAST at school, and are going to be dying to share everything!  Have a big welcome sign on the door, be prepared with a special treat or a favorite dinner, and be ready to give them your full attention as they tell you everything.

Ways to get your kids talking about school:

  • Peak and the Pit: at dinner every night, everyone goes around and shares their peak (best part of the day), and the pit (worst part)
  • 1 thing that made you laugh
  • 1 thing that frustrated you today
  • 1 thing you learned today
  • 1 question you asked today
  • 1 thing you created today
  • 1 way you helped today
  • 1 way someone was kind to you today

Make sure everyone at the table shares-no screen time.  All of these ideas get your child in the routine of talking, sharing, and listening- it always gets you to be tuned into what really is going on in their little school lives.  Teaching conversation skills is so important, and is a great way for the whole family to regroup and catch up together.

These are some of my favorite back to school traditions that I grew up doing, have started doing with Evie, and plan to continue as the years go by.  I can’t wait to hear how back to school goes for you!  Be sure to download the 10 Ways to Celebrate Going Back to School…these 5 are good, but the 5 waiting for you are SO fun too!

Comment below and tell me which tradition you are excited to start with your littles this year!

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