How fun is it that we are all starting a new homeschool year? Although it’s not required, homeschoolers love to do special and fun back to homeschool traditions. We do, too! Having said that, this doesn’t mean that each year is a repeat celebration. Just the fact that something is done—even if it’s something new each year—makes celebrating a tradition!
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There are so many things to celebrate for back to homeschool time. It’s all about being together as a family, exploring new things, and learning tons! Here are some ideas to consider.
Putting God First
In the first place, it’s because of God that we get to homeschool. And, it’s by the grace of God that we are able to follow through with such a great commitment. So, here are some ways to honor Him from the start:
- give thanks to God for the ability to homeschool or to not-send-your-kids-back-to-school
- pray together as a family—asking Him to grow you and strengthen you
- choose a Bible verse for your school year and memorize it together
- recite your Bible verse together at the beginning of each day or each week or each month (your choice)
Putting Others First
Are you familiar with the anacronym J.O.Y—Jesus, Others, Yourself? We talked about putting God first. Now, let’s consider ways we can start our homeschool year by putting others before yourself:
- commit to praying for other homeschool families
- consider praying for families in other nations who long to homeschool but it’s not legal for them to
- pray for your state’s Christian home education network
- remember to pray for the children in the public schools
- voluntarily help another family with homeschool expenses
Fun Field Trips
Maybe it’s a trip to a location you love but avoid during the summer when school children are on break. Or, maybe it’s a new-to-you location you want to explore. But, again, the crowds make you keep away.
Homeschoolers are kinda known for taking a break from field trips during the summer. Maybe you map it out during the summer. Or, maybe you’re more spontaneous. In either case, when those school bells ring it’s time to trek out and visit some fun places like:
- hiking trails
- splash pads
- trampoline park
- vacationing somewhere
Family and Food
Whether it’s heading out to a family favorite bakery, restaurant, or decorating and having a special meal at home, here are some favorites that families enjoy having for back to homeschool:
- a family favorite dinner
- blizzards—homemade versions are super!
- delectable donuts for breakfast or for a treat later in the day
- dropping off home-baked goodies to family and friends
- ice cream
- invite family members over for a special meal
- mystery dinner in celebration
- pancakes made up of different flavors and/or shapes
- popcorn and a family movie
Preparing for Learning
This can be so much fun! Sometimes absence makes the heart grow fonder—taking time off from lessons can have children asking to start them up again. However, sometimes the break is welcome and looking forward to back to homeschool begins with new things!
- all about me pages
- backpacks full of new supplies (and maybe some treats!)
- books, books, books galore—wrapped up or in a morning basket
- choose ‘spirit week’ themes for each month
- decide on what new recipes to bake and cook for your ‘home economics’ lessons
- decorating home with fall décor
- decorate notebooks
- design a vision board consisting of goals and maybe perks for staying on track
- first day is pajama day to relax in as they gear up for learning
- pick some exercises to do as a family for P.E.
- prepping for upcoming holidays by shopping at craft stores
- themed outdoor scavenger hunts to get them excited about a lesson for the day
- select instrumental music to play softly during reading time or lesson time
- setting goals together for the year
- pick a family read aloud (living) book that corresponds with history lessons
- planning rhythms and routines
- pouring over new curriculum
Documenting the Beginning of Back to Homeschool
There are several ways to document back to homeschool for the newyear. Here are just a few to help inspire or motivate you:
- bedhead pictures on the first day of homeschool (these are super fun to look back on!)
- break out the camera or hire that photographer and head out for some great pictures. Choose a new location or make it a tradition to take them at the same location each year.
- create a scrapbook page to frame or add to a family scrapbook album
- interview each other with the same set of questions each year on the first and final day of the homeschool year (see how the answers change over time)
- trace their hands or feet and keep it in each new school year’s binder to keep track of their growth each year