Back to school traditions to start this year

Young boy waves goodby while getting onto a yellow school bus

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV) Going back to school – or going to school for the very first time – can be an overwhelming experience for both children and parents. Make this time fun by establishing some traditions and making memories the family can cherish for years to come.


There are so many ways to capture your child’s back-to-school photo. Here are a few ideas to mix it up a little.

First & Last Day

Two boys going to school

Take a picture on the first day and the last day of school to show how much your child has grown. Include all of your children in the photo, even if they don’t go to school yet. That way you can see how much everybody has changed.

List of Likes

Back to school photo
Photo courtesy Babble

Have your child hold up a sign or a chalkboard in the photo that shows his or her’s likes, interests, favorite TV show, song, food, or any other tidbit you can come up with!

Picture Progression

Back to school picture of child holding photo

Frame your child’s first back to school picture and have him or her hold it in the next year’s picture. Then continue the pattern in the years to come. This idea comes from Lalymom.

Class of…

Class of... back to school photo
Photo courtesy Fun, Cheap or Free

Get a large t-shirt and label it with your child’s graduation year. Take a picture on the first day of school each year and watch your child grow into the t-shirt! Idea courtesy of Fun, Cheap or Free.

Make Meals Special

BreakfastIdeas for special back to school meals

Put a candle with your child’s grade number (or a K for kindergarten!) in a muffin, pancakes, or waffles. Have them make a back to school wish and blow it out!


Leave a little note with some encouraging words in your child’s lunchbox.


Eat out at a restaurant or let your kids pick the menu. Ask them what was their favorite part of the day.

Fashion Show

Girl wearing t-shirt and jeans

New clothes are part of back to school fun! Put on some music and have your kids rock their new wardrobe!

Magic Snack Mix

Back to School Snack Mix
Photo courtesy Elementary Shenanigans

What a great idea from Amazing Grace! Make a special treat out of trail mix, cereal, pretzels, or other goodies. Package it up with this sweet poem for a little encouragement on the day before the first day of school. Free printables available from Elementary Shenanigans.


First day of school interview
Photo courtesy Positively Splendid

Document how much your child changes through the school year by having him or her fill out an interview (or ask them the questions and write them down) on the first day of school and the last day of school. Free printables from Positively Splendid.

Count Down the Days

Back to School Countdown
Photo courtesy Happy Home Fairy

This is a great one from Happy Home Fairy, for the child who can’t wait to go (back) to school! Make a school bus (or apple, or whatever you can come up with) and attach paper rings for each day left before school starts. Let you child rip a ring or cut a ring off for each day until there are none left on the first day of school! Or click here for a simpler coloring countdown page.

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