3 Fun and Frugal Back to School Traditions for the Whole Family

Photo by woddleywonderworks

I’m still catching up from being on vacation, so here’s another great guest post for you! I love the idea of the time capsule, since this is my daughter’s first year in school, it would be a great time to start that tradition!

Guest Post by Stacey at A GOOD and SIMPLE Life:

Back to school is just around the corner.  Everyone shares a different opinion about going back to school: Some mom’s are excited and ready for a change of pace; other mom’s are disappointed that it’s coming up so soon.  Some kids are thrilled and ready for the new opportunities that await them, while other kids wish it could be summertime all year long.

Whatever the attitudes of your family members, reign in the new school year with some fun and frugal back to school traditions. These traditions can be a much anticipated part of the year for everyone in your family.

Here’s 3 Fun and Frugal Back to School Traditions to help you start the year off on the right foot.

1.    Big Breakfast Week

The week before school starts, start getting everybody up earlier in the mornings in preparation for school.  Have bigger than usual and fun breakfasts planned so it will be fun and memorable for all.  Ideas for big, fun breakfasts could be: Silly Shaped Pancakes, Waffles with whipped cream and fruit, Breakfast Burritos and more.

Have friends in your neighborhood that are starting school too?  Invite them over for breakfast too and start a tradition!

2.    Aspiration Night

A night or two before school starts, gather the family for an evening together.  Have a special dinner planned, perhaps a family favorite that you don’t have often.  Light some candles on the table.  Do extra things to make it extra special.  During dinner, take the opportunity talk about the new school year.  What are your children excited about?  What are their fears?  What are their aspirations?

After dinner is eaten, have the family work together to create posters for each child starting school.  Using images cut from magazines and the children’s drawings, make an aspiration poster.  Similar to a collage, it could portray things that the child is looking forward to in the coming school year and hopes of achievement.

You could portray dreams and pursuits your child hopes to achieve.  If your child struggles with math or reading, images could be posted up on their poster encouraging them to work hard and strengthen that area.

Anything you and your child think that would motivate and inspire them in the coming year, include that on the poster.  It needn’t be huge but make it any size you feel they would enjoy and reflect back on best.  If desired, hang in their bedrooms as a reminder of their goals and aspirations.

After posters are made, have a special dessert to cap off the evening.  This night could become a much anticipated night where the children get to dream and talk to you about their new school year.

3.    Back to School Time Capsules

Depending on the ages of your children, have them write, draw or you write for them what their favorite memories from the summer are.  Include some memorabilia from the summer if you wish as well, such as a baggie of sand from the beach, leaves or flowers from your yard, a photo from a vacation, etc.  Include a list of information about them at that particular age such as favorite color, movie, food, sport, book, etc.  You could even include hand or foot prints in the time capsules.

Last but not least, include information about the coming school year such as what their favorite school subject is, what their least favorite subject is, teachers name for the coming year, what they are most proud of, what they are most afraid of, etc.  Seal away in a box to take out on the last day of school next spring!

Back to school traditions are a great way to welcome in this new and exciting season.  But also, if family members are less than excited about returning to school, these traditions can help them recognize and address any concerns or fears.

These traditions can smooth the difficulty of the transition between summertime and school time.  Together as a family, you can say goodbye to the old season and hello to the new season. They just may become some of your favorite traditions of the entire year!

What are your favorite back to school traditions in your family?

Stacey is the mother of two young active and energetic boys who help keep life extraordinary, if not a little crazy! Her boys, including her husband, are her life and her family is her first priority. She does her best to find balance as she juggles the demands of motherhood and the requirements of home management, all while enjoying the beautiful life God has given her! Stacey blogs at A GOOD and SIMPLE Life. where she and her husband chronicle their efforts to live more simply, frugally and self-sufficiently in order to create a more meaningful, purposeful life for their family.

If you’d like to learn more about living green and living frugally I’d love to have you as a Live Renewed reader! You can subscribe, either by email or in a reader, to get the latest posts, ideas and inspiration for living frugally green.

We’ll be talking more about routines and back-to-school for the rest of August, I’d love to have you join with me! You can also connect with me on Twitter and Facebook!




  1. says

    I love the Aspiration Night, my kids have already started back to school, but I think I will sit down with them this weekend and have them set goals. For us back to school starts a couple of weeks earlier with get up earlier each week until we are back on a school schedule.

  2. says

    One tradition we do is on the first and last days of school…we take pictures of the kids waiting for and getting on the bus, and then I run to Target or CVS to print them out and make a “Welcome Home First Grader!” (or whatever grade) poster with pictures from the last year (if I’m that coordinated) or just that morning (more typical). Both kids end up keeping them up in their room all year. And I have fun seeing the changes in the kids from September to June to September again.
    It makes it a crazy morning for me but my kids really like it so I keep doing it!


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