When the kids were small, celebrating the end of the homeschool year might mean a pancake celebration or a trip to the local ice cream shop. When they pass the ripe old age of 13, they might not be quite as interested in the “fun” things you enjoyed as a family.
It can be a difficult and surprising transition for the mom of a teen. Where’d that sweet faced child go off to?
Not to worry! Here are ten ways your teens will enjoy celebrating the end of the homeschool year.
10 Ways to Celebrate the End of Homeschool Year with Your Teens
If the idea of planning a big to-do isn’t your thing you can keep it easy-peasy. Any of the following ways can be great fun!
- Ask them how they’d like to celebrate. Keep in mind that you might get answers of “nothing” “I don’t know”, and “whatever.” However, it’s important to consider their wishes. If you end up with a reluctant celebrant, go ahead and honor that. You can choose a gift card to their favorite fast-food place as a little-something.
- Plan a teen game night with friends and other homeschoolers. Where there’s food to eat and games to be played, there’s a celebration.
- Seek out a service opportunity. This can be a great way to change a teen’s focus and maybe even spark a permanent interest in serving. Our family did ESL with displaced refugees and it sparked one daughter’s interest in teaching.
- Have a formal dinner. Invite grandparents if practical and eat somewhere that doesn’t have a dollar menu. Dress up!
- Make a scrapbook of memories from the year. Photos, drawings, ticket stubs, and any little momento has a story to tell. You could include a letter written by you sharing your pride over your teen’s year of work.
- Binge watch a favorite series. I mean, it is a celebration, right? You can visit PluggedIn for family-friendly reviews and age-appropriate movies for teens.
- Approach your church about hosting an event with other teens. A cake and punch evening with other families in your church can make a special event.
- Go summer clothes shopping. Give a budget for your teen to manage and let them start their summer searching for new board shorts or flip flops.
- Gift them a journal for summer writing. There’s nothing like the smell of fresh leather, or having a special place to keep track of the sure-to-be summer adventures.
- Join a summer book club. Or create a summer book list to and shop for your favorites with a day of bookstore browsing.
Honoring the Work That’s Been Done
Not listed above, but an important part of the end of the year, either as part of the celebrating, or as a way of honoring the year’s work, would be to create ways your teen can evaluate the year. What worked? What didn’t work? What needs to be done next year? This can be done by setting goals with your teen for the next year and looking ahead to college or college-prep.
Take Photos of Your Teen
Our children grow so quickly, and while snapping pictures of them when they are small is second nature, you tend to not have as many of them as they are teens. Plan to have a professional photo taken at the end of each year. While this is normally done at the beginning of the school year in the public schools, why not do it when your schedule is less busy?
However you might choose to end your year-celebration or reflection, we can all agree—we’ve earned our summer break!