It's Almost Time to Send the Kids Back to School: Tips for Having an End of Summer/Start of School Party
August 17, 2012
Parents, it’s the day you’ve been waiting for all summer—the kids are heading back to school! While they might be dreading the first of school, greeting it with long faces and sad puppy dog eyes begging you for just one more day at home, you’re probably giddy with excitement at the prospect of another school year starting and a few hours of peace and quiet in the house while they’re at school. Make their first day special with a back to school send off that lets them know just how much you’ll miss them and turns their frowns into smiles as they climb up those school bus steps. Whether you’re sending your only child off for their very first day of kindergarten or your youngest to their senior year of high school, celebrate that first day of school with a mini-party that will fast become a favorite family tradition your kids will love.
Turn the first day of school into something to look forward to instead of something to dread. If you make it seem more like a celebration or holiday, instead of a sad end to summer, then your kids will eagerly anticipate the first day of school, waiting to see what fun you’ve cooked up for them instead of lamenting the end of their summer vacation. The night before school starts, after the kids are tucked into bed—nice and early of course, they’ll need to be bright eyed for the first day of school—decorate the kitchen and their bedroom doors for the occasion. Cover their bedroom doors with paper streamers and balloons in their school colors so they’ll discover the fun the minute they wake up on the first day of school. Surprise them by covering the bathroom mirror with more well wishes and words of encouragement for their first day of school using window paint markers or even lipstick or eyeliner! They’ll be sure to smile as they’re brushing their teeth!
Deck the halls and the kitchen in more streamers, balloons, and other school-themed decorations that will get the kids in the mood for celebrating. Order a custom back to school banner personalized with your children’s names that wishes them well in the new school year. You’ll be able to use the same banner from year to year, or you can order a new one celebrating each school year. Pull out some of that artwork you’ve saved from school years past and cover the fridge and walls with it, showing the progression of their artistic skills. Create a Wall of Fame with old school pictures, arranged chronologically. Start a tradition where you take a picture of each child next to their decorated bedroom door if you’re going to make your back to school send off a yearly tradition and display those pictures as well. As the years progress, you and your kids will love being able to look back and see how much they’ve grown!
Everyone knows breakfast is the most important meal of the day and on the first day of school, it’s doubly important to send the kids off with a full and happy stomach! If your kids have a favorite breakfast, there’s no better time to prepare it, even if it means getting up a little earlier than normal to cook a full pancake breakfast, complete with bacon, warm maple syrup, and fluffy scrambled eggs. If your kids can’t get enough of your famous cinnamon rolls, give in and let them enjoy the sweet treats just this once before school, just balance it with some protein, like eggs, to balance out the inevitable sugar rush that’s sure to follow!
If you’ve got middle school or high school aged kids, then your back to school send off will have to end at the front door, when you give them a hug and send them on their way, wishing them a happy first day of school, lest you risk embarrassing them in front of their friends. But, if your child is just starting school, or doesn’t mind Mom or Dad walking them to the school bus, you can continue your send off at the bus stop! Of course you’ll need to take the requisite pictures of them wearing their backpack and first day of school outfit as they climb those bus steps so the camera is a must-have accessory for your send off! But another fun idea is lots of bubbles! For the march to the bus stop and as the kids wait, it will not only make the day seem a little more special, but it will also take their mind off any first day jitters.
Start your back to school send off tradition early in your child’s school career and you’ll have created fond memories your children will look back on for years to come and will probably continue with their own children! And, once you’ve waved goodbye as the bus rolls away, you can head back to the house knowing you’ve made the first day of school a little happier for everyone!