15 great first-day-of-school traditions to do with your kids

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  • We know that the first day of school is always a daunting prospect.

    Whether your child is leaving you for the very first time or they’re going back for the start of a new term, we’re always a little reluctant to let go of their hand.

    These cute first day of school traditions ought to make it a little easier. Whether it’s a copious amount of sweets, a stationary treasure hunt or making a family time capsule, there are so many great first day of school traditions to start with your family.

    And it’s never too late to start one, so make going back to school less of a chore by getting their creative juices flowing and let their imaginations run wild!

    1. Bus stop brunch

    Image: My Life and Kids

    A cute idea to celebrate the first morning school run is by inviting the other families on your street or close by to enjoy a drink and muffin by the bus stop to say goodbye all together. It will be fun for you and the other mums, you could bring out a table and a few chairs to have coffees and as soon as your little one sees their friends they will forgot those back to school blues.

    2. Back to school reflections

    Every year the night before starting back at school ask your child some reflective questions to think about what they learnt from last year and some goals to set themselves for the year ahead. Not only will this mentally prepare them and put them in a good head space to achieve it makes for a lovely keepsake to look back at when they’re older.

    3. Decorate their door while they sleep

    Image: Coffee Beans and Kisses

    Make them smile and getting up that little bit easier by decorating their door with balloons and streamers whilst they sleep. When they get up in the morning it will be such a surprise they’ll be sure to feel more positive about the day.

    4. Mark it with a picture tradition

    Image: Etsy

    We love this chalkboard that lets your child describe their age, what they want to be when they grow up and what their passions and hobbies are. Do it every year and see how they grow and change as a person. Just think about getting these pictures out on their 21st!

    5. Make a time capsule

    Image: Thehomespunheart

    On the last day of the holidays get your kids to put a variety of things from the summer in their very own time capsule. Bury it in the garden and dig it up again on the last day of school. See how much their interests have changed and their delight at rediscovering their buried treasure. You can even make a big event out of decorating the capsule together.

    6. Read a special book

    Buy it: Amazon

    To calm those jittery pre-school nerves, read your child a ‘back to school’ book the night before term starts. We recommend The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn, which tells the tale of a mum who tells her son that if he feels lonely he can put his cheek to his hand and feel her kiss. Heart warming and reassuring, this will be a book you both love.

    7. Celebrate ‘School Year’s Eve’

    Image: happyhomefairy

    Recreate the magic of New Year’s Eve with this back to school party. Invite school friends, or just have a family night in, whoever comes, it’ll be something your children are so excited for. Play their favourite party games, music and even bake cakes and special treats with them in the days leading up to the party to build anticipation. But make sure it doesn’t run on too late, the kids will need an early night!

    8. Take a photo

    Image: Pinterest

    This one’s a classic. Take a photo of your kids on their first day at school. Take one every year and marvel at how much they’ve grown up. Put them all into an album for graduation as a marker of their school years.

    9. Back to school fairies

    Image: personalcreations

    Inspire the kind of excitement that can only be brought around by the Tooth Fairy or Father Christmas with this ingenious way to get the kids to bed the night before their first day. Make sure they leave their windows open and in the morning they’ll find a ‘back to school’ package filled with school essentials and a few special treats from the Back To School Fairy!

    10. After school surprise

    Whether you keep it the same each year or surprise your kids each time, plan something really exciting for after their first day of school, so they’re really looking forward to it. It might be a trip to the cinema or a water-fight, but whatever it is, it’s bound to suppress the back to school upsets.

    11. Lunchbox love notes

    Image: familyeducation

    If it’s their first year or the start of a new one, kids can miss their parents on their first day. Leave cute little love notes in their lunch box or in their bag to keep them going throughout the day. It’ll be fun for your child to search around for the notes, as well as feeling comforted by your messages.

    12. Scavenger hunt

    You’ve bought all the essential school stationary, so now why not make receiving it exciting? Hide the items around the house and tell your kids it’s a treasure hunt. They’ll race around the house determined to be the first to complete the set. New stationary always seems to be the best bit of going back to school, so when they’ve found it all, let them start using it straight away!

    13. Back to school Schultuumltes

    Image: twoboysonegirlandacrazymom

    Why not try out this cool German tradition? Kids receive a large cone filled with treats and sweets on the night before going back to school. It’ll make the evening a little less sad, and maybe you could combine it with a movie night while they chomp away. Don’t let them eat it all at once though, make it something for them to look forward to all week.

    14. Special breakfast

    Image: littlenummies

    There’s nothing worse than waking up on the first day of school, tired, grumpy and not wanting to go. Make the first morning more enjoyable by making your kids’ favourite breakfast and treating them to a feast, like this cute little owl pancake. It might be sugary, but it is only once a year…

    15. One last summer adventure

    Plan something really special for the last day of the summer holidays. This way your kids will be counting down the days and you won’t have to deal with such disheartened little ones. You could build a den, take a trip to the seaside, or go and fly a kite. Whatever it may be, it’ll make your last summer day together one that the whole family will enjoy.

    Do you have any tricks or traditions for making back to school a little less daunting? Let us know by leaving a comment in the box below.