It’s August and it’s official, I’m embracing back-to-school season! I know even for me, transitioning from vacation mode back into work mode can be tough (anyone else get post-vacation blues or even Sunday scaries?). Now that back-to-school season is upon us, having a few rituals that make this time fun can give my kids something to look forward to and make the switch to school mode easier!
Get excited to pick out new supplies
First things first, school supplies! I’m a bit of a nerd so I LOVED school supply shopping (I’m that girl who geeks out over mechanical pencils!) and Staples is THE back-to-school specialty store. Dylan and Mei are both obsessed with colored pencils right now, so picking up some new supplies that they can show off to friends goes a long way to getting pumped up about the first day back to school.
With the Staples for Students Sweepstakes, for every purchase of $25+ is an entry into the sweepstakes to win one of 5 education prizes: a $50,000 grand prize scholarship or one of four $25,000 first-prize scholarships!
You can also choose to donate to classroom projects in your local Staples stores as well as online, and Staples will match donations raised during the back-to-school season! It’s incredible to think that together, Staples and DonorsChoose.org have funded over 700,000 classroom projects for teachers and positively affected more than 18 million students across the country!
I will be my local Staples store (11700 Preston Rd, Dallas, TX 75230) on August 8 for an in-store event from 9:30am – 11pm with one of Dallas’ favorite former football players, DeMarcus Ware! Come out and join me in picking up the newest back-to-school products. There may even be photo-ops with DeMarcus as well!
Set expectations with back-to-school books
Books have always been a big part of my kids’ life and even more so when they go through new experiences and milestones. I picked up several books for Dylan and Mei when they were each starting school for the first time. In my opinion, it’s been a great way for helping set expectations as well as realizing emotions that they may be going through in preparation for the big day. A few of my favorites include:
Visit the school / meet the teacher
Demystifying all the unknowns goes a long way to helping my kids get over the nervousness that comes with the first day back to school. A few weeks before school starts, I’ll drive my kids to the school and if possible, let them have some fun on the playground. It really helps to let them know that there will definitely be lots of opportunities to let loose and play at school! Many schools also offer a time before the first day where kids can come into the classroom, meet some of their other classmates, and meet the teacher. Definitely don’t miss this opportunity for your kids to get a peek into their new digs as well as meet some of the faces that they’ll be seeing in the upcoming year — my kids both end up talking about that meet-and-greet experience all the way leading up to the actual first day!
Pick out new snacks
Who doesn’t look forward to lunch time right? Packing lunches is no small feat (expect a whole post on it coming up!) but I love getting my kids involved in the process. Just like picking out school supplies, I take my kids on a grocery run and together we pick out some snacks that they can then take with them in their lunchbox. I’ll admit that there is a bit of negotiation that goes on as we determine healthy snack options, but I love that I can help my kids learn about food and figure out a healthy balance when it comes to what they put in their bodies. Plus, it gives them something to look forward to the night before as we pack our lunches for the big first day. And, of course, do not forget to grab their new lunchbox while at Staples!
Draw a new school year goal or their favorite summer memory
“This year I want to go to another planet.” –Dylan
As the summer winds down, another one of my favorite rituals is having my kids draw out either a favorite memory from the summer or write down a goal they may have for the next year. Dylan loves space and has dreams of being an astronaut, so there was no doubt that he had his heart set to go to another planet! I love saving these over the years and having these pictures and writings around is not only so interesting for the kids as we look back on each year, but it also helps them to cherish a good memory from the summer or have something to look forward to in the new school year!
Take “first day back to school” photos
And of course, be sure to snap that “first day back to school” pic! I love seeing how my kids have grown over the years and it’s always such a good memory that we can all look back on! While school technically hasn’t started for us yet this year, I couldn’t help but take a quick snap just to include it in this collage as it’s crazy to see the changes just 1 year makes!
I’d love to know what rituals your family may have as we all get ready for back to school! Be sure to stop by your local Staples to pick up essentials for your kids’ big day and support their efforts to give back with their Staples for Students Sweepstakes and DonorsChoose.org initiative!
Created in partnership with Staples.