I think it is important to establish traditions with your home schooled children. A few traditions we have are school supply shopping and first day of school celebrations.
Every year the kids and I go shopping to pick up some back to homeschool supplies. This usually means notebooks, pencils, and a little something special. This year my younger children picked out some very inexpensive calculators as their special purchase. I was hesitant at first to buy these calculators because I could see them ending up in our junk drawer, but my kids have been playing with them all week. Even my preschooler is adding numbers and having fun while learning!
After the school shopping trip we head out for a special back to school lunch. We talk about the upcoming year, expectations, favorite subjects, and anything else that is on their mind about school. The kids really look forward to this special time.
We also have a first day of school celebration. This year it will actually be a second day of school celebration, but we’re taking the whole family to a baseball game. We like to do something with dad to kick off the school year and this year we were able to get some baseball tickets, so that’s how we’re celebrating.
I also try to get pictures of the kids on the first day of school. It is fun to look back over the years and see how much they have changed. My oldest reminded me this weekend that this is her last year of “official” homeschooling, as next year she will take classes at a community college. Wow. I can’t believe she is almost finished. It seems like just yesterday we were pulling out those green Bob Jones Reading level one books! I know when your kids are little and you’re surrounded by Cheerios and dirty diapers it is hard to believe that time flies, but trust me, it does.
Whether you homeschool or not, creating traditions with your kids is a great way to create memories that last a lifetime. I still remember baking cinnamon rolls and pies with my father every December to take to families in our church. It doesn’t have to be something big or expensive, just something the kids know they can count on happening year after year.