Fun Ways to Celebrate The First Day of School

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first day of school

The first day of school is just around the corner for several OC school districts and for many moms including myself, we are filled with emotions.

Feelings of frustration, relief, and uncertainty. But if you can (and I know it’s hard), we should take a moment and bring some enthusiasm and celebrate the start of the new school year with our children. Below is a list of ways to celebrate the start of the 2020/2021 school year:

  1. Buy a New Outfit: I know it’s easy and cost-effective to skip the back to school wardrobe shopping but it would still be nice to start of the school year with a brand new outfit. My son starts kindergarten and he’s into superheroes so naturally, he chose a Captain America shirt for the first day.
  2. Take the Obligatory First Day of School Picture with chalkboard, sign, pennant: Don’t forget to take that obligatory first day of school picture because you know that once May or June hits, you’re going to want to do that “First Day vs. Last Day” comparison photo.
  3. Give a back to school book or present: There are so many books celebrating the First Day of (their grade) and it’s a nice touch to give it the kiddos on the night before their first day. I bought my son “Kindergarten, Here I Come” from Amazon for less than $5 and will read it to him the night before school starts.
  4. Make the first day of lunch school: For many moms including myself, one of the perks of WFH is having the kitchen just steps away so it would be nice to jazz up their first day of school with a special lunch like a Star-shaped sandwich.
  5. Instill the routine and structure: This is so important and something I’ve personally failed at, kick off the new school year with the daily structure and routine.
  6. Snag some new school supplies: This was one of my favorite things that I looked forward to every late summer/early fall. I loved getting my Lisa Frank or Hello Kitty supply list. Whether the kids are in a traditional classroom or inside their homes, they’ll still need school supplies.
  7. Create a dedicated school area: Start of the school year with creating that dedicated school area. When schools went virtual in March, we had no idea how long it would last so we never created a dedicated study area. Our zoom sessions ranged from the dining table to the kitchen counter to my son’s room and it was always stressful. With the new school year about to start, we’ve invested in a new desk and have rearranged my son’s room to ensure that he has everything he needs in one organized area.
  8. Dedicate this year to be memorable: This year is different but rather than focusing on the could’ve and should’ve, why not spin in (even for our kids) into something positive. One day they’ll be reading about this time period in their history books so let’s TRY to make as many fun memories as we can and show our kids how to make lemonade out of lemons.
  9. Write your goals for the new school year: Have your kids write their goals and resolutions for the year and they don’t need to be educationally based, they can be life skills, a sport, a new hobby, etc. It’s always fun working towards a goal and the start of the school year is a perfect time.
  10. Make a time capsule: 2020 is unlike any other year and as hard as it seems, this too shall pass. So clip that newspaper article, add your child’s favorite figurine, throw in your child’s latest drawing, and make a time capsule. Ask your child for their input and make sure to involve them, it’ll be a fun activity for all.

I hope these ideas help spark some joy in the next few days and weeks as our children start the new school year. Best of luck mamas, you got this!

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Born and raised in Orange County from immigrant parents, Allison Melanio is an Xennial (mix of Gen X and Millennial) mom of two young children – Maddox (5) and Macy (3). Her husband and two kids currently reside in Rancho Mission Viejo, CA. Allison’s background includes an Entertainment PR Internship at Nickelodeon in NYC, a Journalism degree from CSULB and 11 years doing corporate communications and events at Altec, a software company in Laguna Hills, CA. Allison ended 2019 by resigning from her position at Altec and now works part time at Canon Medical Systems, USA as a Multimedia Specialist so she can devote more time to her young children. A typical Monday to Friday week for Allison includes two to three work days, a day to take the kids to Pretend City, Disneyland or the Park and a day to volunteer in her son’s PreK class and then them to ballet and karate. Allison loves making lists, exploring new places, planning (vacations, parties, and events) and making the most out of every day!