By Patricia Hall, FairfaxFamilyFun.com
I know, I know… who wants to think about going back to school, when summer is in full swing? Although Fairfax County Public Schools students won’t begin another academic year for a few more weeks, the start of another school year always seems to be a hectic time. Whether it’s an exciting, scary, or ordinary time of year for you and your kids, each back-to-school time brings a chance to create new routines, establish better habits, and instill a love of learning. While you’re doing all that, though, remember to have FUN! Below we present 20 easy ways to celebrate back-to-school time. Some ideas are for ways to celebrate the first day of school, others are for unique photo opps, and some are for ways to reach out to new students and teachers.
Beyond these ideas listed below, pay special attention to kids starting or finishing school, who are celebrating milestones:
Incoming kindergarten kids may feel anxious about being away from home, making new friends, and fitting in. Parents, remember to convey a calm, optimistic, and enthusiastic approach to school to help your kids feel better. Encourage your kids to talk about their experiences at school, but don’t push them too much on this. Also, try to carve out time in your day, even if it means taking time off work, to make lunch dates with your kids in the first few weeks. Visiting them in the cafeteria with your own lunchbox — or better yet, a take-out lunch from their favorite restaurant — can really brighten their day.
High school seniors are more independent, of course, and will want to do things with their friends, so welcome them into your celebrations. Ask your seniors if they’d like to invite any friends to any back-to-school activities you’re planning and of course let them make their own special plans… this is their last year, after all!
Finally, remember the other parents. If, for example, you are anxious about your child’s first day of school (as is often the case for parents with kids entering kindergarten!), plan your own parents-only outing for that day. Planning a breakfast or lunch with other moms and dads on that first day of school is a nice way to bond with friends, openly discuss your concerns, and share ideas for making the school year productive and fun.
Have a great school year, everyone! 🙂