I don’t remember any back-to-school traditions growing up aside from the usual back-to-school clothes shopping. We had plenty of others traditions that stand out though. But isn’t that what having a family and raising little people is all about? Starting your own traditions that’ll last a lifetime.
As parents, our goal should always be to find connection with our children. Connection is how our children feel loved. Connection is what will keep our kids feeling safe enough to always come to us even in those challenging teenage years.
If you’ve never read, “The Five Love Languages” by Dr. Gary Chapman, then I highly recommend it. There is a subsequent book for children that he wrote as well based on the same five love languages. He speaks about the different ways children receive and give love.
I could go on and on about the love languages, but I just want to give you a quick overview. People primarily give and receive love through 1-2 of these 5 basic Ways:
When you read through these ideas for back-to school traditions to start with your family, think about how your child gives and receives love. What will cause your child to feel the most connected with you? If you’re not sure, try them all and see how he or she responds.
This first idea might fall under quality time. The infamous first day of school (and last) picture. But to mix it up a bit try having your child hold a sign that says their grade, what they want to be when they grow up, and favorite hobby or sport. Spend some time discussing these questions with your child.
A back-to-school breakfast falls under quality time or could be an act of service as well. My girlfriend does donuts every year with her kiddos. What kid wouldn’t look forward to that each year? Let your child pick his or her favorite breakfast.
Having a special gift or surprise for your child waiting when they get home is an excellent gift giving idea. What child wouldn’t look forward to that?
A special dinner is a great act of service. The night before have a special dinner of their choosing and ask them what they are most looking forward to about their first day of school.
My kids love notes in their lunch and notes are a great way to use affirmation. Write a special note to your child and put it in their lunch encouraging them about the day and the year to come. Remind them who they were created to be and what special gifts or talents you see in them.
At the end of the day sit down and reflect on the day. This time spent would be a great example of the quality time love language. Ask your child what their favorite thing about the day was. Ask them about their teacher. Ask them about their friends. Ask them about what their future will look like. Record all that they say.
Get some good cuddle time in for the physical touch love language and reflect on the day. Let your child tell you all the amazing things that happened at school that day!
More gift giving! How fun would it be to get your new supplies all wrapped like a present. Surprise your child with a “present” and have all their goodies wrapped like it’s Christmas!
Back-to School traditions are just starting for us. I’m looking forward to putting some of these ideas into action for our family. Everyday is a new day to show your child how much they mean to you.
**What traditions did your family have? What traditions are you starting now? Have you ever thought about how they fit in with the five love languages? I would love to hear your thoughts.
Use the links below to order Gary Chapman’s best-selling book.