Back to Homeschool Traditions to Make the New School Year SpecialLisa Trombley
Back to school slogans are everywhere during July and August. Children are getting ready for a new school year by purchasing new school supplies, clothes, backpacks, and lunch boxes. The hype can make your homeschooled children feel left out. That was the case for my children the first few years we homeschooled. To curb this negative feeling, we started back to homeschool traditions to make the start of the new year feel special for us too.
Buying New Supplies
With all of the crayons, pencils, markers, and other school supplies on sale, it is a great time for the homeschool family to stock up. We have a special day that we go shopping for new school supplies. Each child gets to set up his own pencil box and crate with fresh supplies: pencils, scissors, glue, ruler, and colored pencils.
First Day of School Pictures
Every year on our first official day of school, I take a photograph of each child using the same wall in our house as the backdrop. I do the same thing on the last day of school to compare and see how much they have matured.
Have a “Not” Back to School Celebration
The first day of school when all the public school kids are lining up to get on their buses in the morning is a great day to have an informal celebration with your homeschool friends. A “not” back to school potluck picnic is a fun way to spend the day catching up with friends you haven’t seen over the summer and celebrating the beginning of a new school year. Having everyone bring a dish to share and bringing drinks, plates, silverware, and napkins for your own family keeps it simple. Load up some balls, chalk, and bubbles and have a party!
If you are unable to get together with friends, the first day of public school in your area is a great day to plan a field trip. All of those favorite places that you have been avoiding all summer long because they were too crowded are now empty. Celebrate a new school year by visiting the zoo, the museum, or Chuck E. Cheese.
Another fun option would be to plan a special meal out for breakfast or lunch to celebrate the start of the new year. My children love to go out to eat, and since it is not something that we do regularly, it is a special treat for “not” back to school. Or simply prepare a special breakfast or lunch at home for the first day of school. Have your children help plan the menu and set the table with special party plates, cups, and forks.
How do you ring in the new school year with your children?