Yesterday was our first day of school: 1st grade, 4th grade and 7th grade (yikes!). We’ve been off since May 8th so everyone was ready to get back into the routine. We don’t have a ton of first day of school traditions but one is to take a photo with a sign showing their current grade. And yes, the 4th and 7th graders are on the opposite sides from their signs. Our other enduring tradition has been to start the school year with a healthy breakfast.
No, not really. But we do have the tradition of letting them pick breakfast. This year we sort of picked for them as we wanted to try Duck Donuts. Let me just say, if you’ve heard the hype about these donuts, it’s all true. Every word. I’m not even a huge donut fan and I wanted to lick the box clean. I’m not sure what makes them so good. They are baked fresh and were still warm when I got home with the box. (And can I say I think I deserve some kind of award for driving 30 minutes with a box of delicious warm sweet smelling donuts on the seat beside me and still making it home with every donut unnibbled?) They were all good but my favorites were the maple-bacon, lemon and cinnamon-sugar.
Our last tradition is that we usually go somewhere and do something fun in the afternoon on the first day of school. This year H. took the kids to the Building Museum to experience their summer installation, The Beach. The Building Museum is a fantastic museum that we love to go to. The past few summers they have done some kind of temporary installation in their very large interior space. Two years ago it was mini-golf, last year was a giant maze and this year is The Beach which is basically an space filled with polystyrene balls. The kids loved it. H. is doing a mini-unit on architecture to start off the year so this also sort of qualified as educational. Sort of.
A new thing I did this year was to ask the kids to each write down three goals for the year and three things that they want us to do more of in our homeschool. I then met with each one alone and we talked about the goals. The responses were very interesting to me and I hope to them. Two of them had goals for themselves that were very similar to my own goals for them. I expected more elaborate things that they wanted to do but for the most part they asked for relatively simple things. One wanted to do school outside more and more art. One wanted more bike rides and more books. Ruth? She wanted more sparkly stuff. So I let her get out the glitter and make some sparkly pictures.
I also usually do a treasure hunt for school supplies/small gifts but decided not to do one this year for various reasons. This was not looked upon well. Ruth listed “treshur hunt” as one of the things she wants more of in our homeschool. It may have to return next year.
So, you can’t win them all. But overall it was a good first day.