One Last Back to School Celebration

Summer is coming to a close, but before jumping back into carpool lines and PTA meetings, let’s kick off the new school year with a Back to School Party that will set the tone for the fall. Here are some of our favorite tips for activities, decor, and food at your back to school bash. 

Planning and Decorations for a Back to School Party

Set the Table

The most effective way to turn your kitchen table into a party setting is to set the table.

For a back to school party, layout a table runner and place school supplies on top, jars filled with pencils or crayons set the mood and can be used for homework in the future.

Create a place setting for each party guest. You can use name tags like the ones a teacher would put on a child’s desk.

Add a composition journal tied together with flair pens for a practical and adorable place setting.

Back to School Gift Baskets

Everyone loves gifts and a favorite mom hack of mine is to take items that you would normally buy for your kids, bundle them together and call it a gift.

Cue the back to school basket that is filled with the items on your child’s school supply list, a new outfit or two, a new lunch box, and a new water bottle. Maybe spring for a pack of smelly markers or cute erasers and you have a back to school basket that will spark lots of joy in your kiddo.

You can also skip the baset and use your child’s backpack.

First Day of School Photos

  • First day of school photos are a must, but a life saving mom hack is to take the picture at your back to school celebration.

  • The morning of the first day of school is going to be busy making sure lunches are packed, backpacks are stuffed, and the kids look presentable. The last thing you want is a super rushed photo because you are barely going to make it to drop off in time.

  • Instead take the photo the day before. It will allow your child to pick their first day outfit in advance and for you to get the perfect shot. When you’re done, have your kid change out of their outfit and lay it out for the first day.

Activities for a Back to School Celebration

Make Friendship Bracelets

The first day of school can be nerve wracking for kids who have spent the summer (or the last year, thank you 2020) at home with their families. Make friendship bracelets to exchange with your kids.

Wear them on the first day of school and when your kiddo is missing you they can look down at their wrist and be reminded of how much you love them. 

Read back to School Books

  • Books are always a winning resource when you are starting something new.
  • The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn is a favorite for incoming preschoolers and kindergarteners who are feeling anxious about leaving their parents.
  • Our Class is a Family by Shannon Olsen or The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson are great reads for older students who need reminders that they are valued members of any classroom.

Create a Back to School Sime Capsule

  • Our kids grow so much each year and we want to remember all the small details. Interview your child and jot down the answers to store in a mason jar until summer of even graduation. Ask about:

    • their favorites

    • who their best friend is

    • what is their dream job

    • what are they looking forward to this year

    • what do they want to learn

    • what are they nervous about

    This is a great way to start some really valuable conversations while preserving memories and admiring how they have grown.

Back To School Bash Food

Breakfast

  • Back to School goes hand in hand with breakfast foods. You can host your celebration at breakfast or even have breakfast for dinner.
  • Create a fun brunch charcuterie board with pancakes, eggs, bacon, breakfast cereal, and fruit. Your kids will gobble it up and sugary cereal is always a simple win.

Favorite Things Dinner

  • Each member of your family picks one thing from the grocery store for dinner, even if it is something you typically say no to.

  • You may end up with orange chicken with a side of fried mac and cheese balls but those are the memories that make you smile.

  • Your kids will love the autonomy of getting to pick a food of their choice.

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 More Back To School Party Traditions

If you have a favorite back to school tradition or tip, I would love to hear it. Share them in the comments.