When my kids were old enough to start school, my mother-in-law passed down a tradition that she continued into adulthood with her children.
On the first day of school, she would take a photo of the child holding the door knob ready to leave. She did this every year and even has a photo of her children in their college cap and gown, holding on to that same door knob.
I’ve continued the tradition with my kids. Now that I have two high-schoolers and a middle schooler, I don’t think my kids would be ready for that first day of school without posing by the front door.
There are so many options for creating your own first day of school tradition. Some are simple and others more elaborate. A lot of them really celebrate school, which I love.
Anything that creates a passion for learning is worth the time in this former teacher’s book!
Top 13 Back-to-School Traditions
- Decorate Their Door While They Sleep – Wow them when they wake up by decorating the door to their bedroom.
- First Day of School Photos with Printable Signs – Instead of labeling the photos you take on the first day of school, you can print off our signs with your child’s grade level and a fill-in-the-blank for what they want to be when they grow up– so fun to compare and contrast each year!
- Back-to-School Shopping – This might seem obvious, but the process of actually going to stores to shop for school clothes is a fun tradition kids look forward to every year. We also find it’s a great opportunity to give back with your kids by filling a back pack for a child in need each year as part of the tradition. Sleep country is right next to our local Target and they have a handy collection box for backpacks and school supplies for foster kids.
- Throw a Back to School Fashion Show – Once the kids have all their back to school clothes, throw a fashion show for everyone to show off what they’ll be wearing for the first day of school. Eighteen25 shows us that a basic idea like this can be something kids look forward to every year.
- First Day of School Jitter Juice – If you’ve seen the book, First Day of School Jitters, you’ll love this idea. Sometimes kids feel anxious about the first day. Holly Griffith had the idea to make this special juice to help calm the first day of school jitters.
- Set Up a Homework Station – This teacher knows it’s important to create a homework station at home. If you already have one, start the tradition of freshening it up every year. If you don’t, get lots of inspiration from our roundup.
- Back-to-School Countdown – If you have kids that cannot wait for school to start, use this classic idea from The Stay-at-Home-Mom Survival Guide.
- First Day of School Breakfast – Creating a memorable first day of school breakfast is an adorable idea. Use these cute printables by Tater Tots and Jello to embellish the table.
- Back to School Dinner Party – Along the same lines as the breakfast, you can create a special dinner after the first day of school where everyone has a chance to share stories about the first day.
- Pimped out Car – I want to do this to my car so much just to see the shocked look on my kids’ faces.
- Sidewalk Chalk Messages at the Bus Stop – I love how KindnessGirl highlights encouraging messages that parents can create for their student on the sidewalk at the bus stop. What a way to be sent off to school!
- Celebrate Their Growth – I love the idea, seen on Simple Home School, of kids being photographed each year next to a measuring chart.
- First Day of School Mini Schultüte – I love the idea of the schultüte. Frog Prince Paperie introduces us to this German tradition where children are gifted a paper cone filled with treats for the first day of school.
More Back-to-School Posts from MPMK
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