20 Moms make Back to School special!

20 Moms Make back to school special
What happens when 20 Moms start chatting about back-to-school? You guessed it… some serious kid friendly back-to-school fun! The conversation leaned towards how we make back-to-school special for our kids… and of course we thought this stuff was way too good to keep to ourselves!

I’ve compiled the best of the best back-to-school tips from 20 Moms into one incredible list… just for you!

Make before back-to-school special

  • Back-to-School Countdown – with Books!We made a little trip to the library and picked up 10 new books to read one for each day before preschool starts. I picked out a few books that were about the first day of school or just school-related and Henry picked out a few that he just liked. So we have a nice mix of books. I wrapped each book separately in our butcher [art] paper, but you could use newspapers or wrapping paper you have on hand.” — Read the entire Countdown to Back to School post by Jamie {Hands On: As we Grow}
  • Make a Personal School Photo Book! My big tip would be to go to the school before it starts and create a photo book for first-timers (preschool and kindergarten age). Then use the book to get them prepared and excited about what they’ll be doing at school all day long. Once school starts, read the book together with the kids at night and ask them to point out their favorite things about school and what they do in each room/space. Full instructions and an example of our photo book .” — Steph {Modern Parents Messy Kids}
  • Get Kids (and Mom) Comfortable with the New Environment! My eldest is about to start kindergarten, and I must be worrying about it more than she is! Her school has grassy grounds that are ideal for picnicking, so we packed a summer picnic and spent a few hours running around the yard, playing on the jungle gym, and generally building connection with the new school.” — Rachelle {Tinker Lab}
  • Pretend Play Your Way to a Confident Student!My daughter is starting public school this year, and is a little nervous about it. To help ease her into things we’ve been role playing with her favorite stuffed animals and experimenting with what school will be like and how to make friends and get to know her teacher. If nothing else, it’s made for lots of fun for both of us and great family time. I hope by the time school starts next month, she’ll be as confident as she looks in this photo!”  — Stacy {Kids Stuff World}
  • Make a School Journal!Get started on a bedtime school journal. The night before school begins, help your child pick out an outfit he wants to wear to the first day of school. Fold it neatly on a chair with socks, shoes and all. Then before bed, read a back-to-school book like “If You Take a Mouse to School” aloud to your child. Then talk with your child about what he thinks the first day of school will be like. Listen to his answer and record a few of his answers in the journal. Invite your child to draw something in his journal too. When you’re all finished, tuck the journal into a safe place for another night of bed time storytelling and journaling and tuck your child all safe and snug into bed.” — Deborah {Teach Preschool}

Love this list from 20 moms! #4 will be perfect for us!

Make the first day back-to-school special

  • Sneak a Little Extra Love!I like to write a note on a 4×6 notecard and pin it into the inside of my kids’ backpacks without them knowing so that it’s the first thing they see when they unzip their backpacks in their classrooms on that first day. Something small and simple. Just a colorful “I love you!”, “You’re going to ROCK 3rd grade!”, or “Have an awesome day!” followed by those magical words, “Love Mom” can be like one more sneaky hug from you every time they open their backpacks.” — Amanda {Not Just Cute}
  • Measure a Years Worth of GrowthFor my son we buy a special shirt for the first day of school. We take a photo of him before he gets on the bus. On the last day of school he wears the same shirt and we make a side by side comparison about how much he’s grown. When we look at the photo together it’s a real conversation started about all the things he’s accomplished and all the changes the school year brought. It’s a simple tradition but a good one.” — Allison {No Time for Flash Cards}
  • Make it Special for Everyone!My youngest isn’t quite old enough for school yet, but she misses her big sister tremendously on that first day. To give my little one something to look forward to, we host a small playgroup right after dropping off the oldest, and everyone brings a breakfast treat to share. We do a simple craft, and read a few stories together.” — Valerie {Inner Child Fun}
  • Take a Fun First Day Picture!Starting with her 2 year old preschool we’ve been doing the chalkboard first day of school idea. Have you seen this? I picked up a pair of chalkboards from Joann’s (1 for the Peanut, 1 for Little Pea for when her day comes) and I keep them in a special spot just for this use for the next 15 years. . .” — Tiffany {Peanut Blossom} 
  • Give Them a Place to Reflect on the Day! “I like to offer M and M plenty of opportunities to write and draw their experiences. This year I made up a First Day of School printable. I’ll leave it on the table for when the kids get home. (Of course setting out paper and some pencils would be just as effective!)” — Jillian {A Mom with a Lesson Plan}

Make back-to-home school special

  • Set out a Fresh Page!To make the beginning of the homeschool year special I’ll be giving each of my kids their own set of little homemade books for writing in along with fun pencils. I’d like to encourage more writing this year and they get a kick out of having writing tools that are special just for them.”  — Alissa {Creative with Kids}
  • Plan for One on One Time! “Fall & Spring is when we tackle the “tough stuff”… aka I will spend 30 min with each child and rotate through each kiddo 2-3 times on what they are struggling with the most (so they get at least a solid hour 1-on-1).” –Rachel {Kids Activities Blog}
  • Make Organizing School Supplies Fun! “We decided it was about time for a tidy desk! And not just any tidy desk – a toilet roll tidy desk!” See the Castle Desk Tidy by Maggy {Red Ted Art}

Now it’s your turn! How do you make Back-to-School extra special?

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  1. Why Mom Mom Mom? I am a stay at home Dad and already do half these things including leaving a special note in the lunch box 195 days a year. It drives me nuts to see all the posts that suggest women are the only primary care givers. Society talks about gender bias toys, games etc…as not being cool. Perhaps that thinking perpetuates from society believing Moms are the only ones that look after the kids.

    1. Hal you are absolutely right! Primary caregivers come in all shapes, sizes and genders. I always try to write with that in mind, of course I (along with all the other women who contributed to this post) are all Moms. We are writing from our experience. SOOOOO…..

      Can you add something extra special to this post? How do you make back to school special for your little ones?

  2. We also home-school and we don’t really have a proper start/finish as they are still little and learn all the time. Oh, and they bug me for activities because they get bored if they have to play all day. What we do over the summer, though, is have a big sort out of our cupboard, plan our year (a bit) and then get to go on a mad shopping spree for things we will need. When the new stuff arrives we put it away.

  3. My triplets are starting kinder this year and I was part of the Early Childhood PTA in our city and now I’m a board member on the PTA. This year we are inviting all the mothers with kinders to come to a playdate at the school playground so the kids can get to know a couple of the kids before they start school. We are hoping that this puts the caregivers at ease that perhaps their kids will know someone on their first day.

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