by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Back to school! The first day or so of elementary school is usually hectic, whether kids are in public, private, or home school. Supplies are being collected and inventoried, everyone's adjusting to the schedule and routine, and the kids may need something to keep them busy. While parents and teachers are busy gathering supplies and preparing for the school year, kids can enjoy these and other back to school activities and art projects. As a mom, homeschool teacher, and former nanny, I have created and organized many back to school crafts, art projects, and activities, many of which have been geared toward elementary students. Here are a few that students might enjoy.
Many people may remember playing "school" as a child. Here's a fun back to school activity to introduce your kids to the concept of school time. This is especially beneficial for kids who haven't yet started school. But, in my experience, most elementary students like playing school, even if they're already in school.This game is best played with a group of friends or family members for the most interaction and real-life experience.
Choose one person as the teacher. Everyone else (if there are other kids) will be the elementary students. Set up an area just like a classroom and have the "teacher" hand out the supplies to everyone. The teacher gets to teach a lesson to everyone, using the chalkboard. It can be a serious lesson or can also be something fun like instructions to draw animals. To make it the most realistic, require kids to raise hands when asking questions. This activity can last as long as the kids are willing to play. Be forewarned that some elementary students may want to play all day.
Fill the Backpack
In this fun back to school activity, elementary students will race to place school items a backpack, mocking the act of preparing for school. This fun back to school activity prepares a child for the act of getting ready in the morning. While it probably won't be quite as hectic as in this race, there will likely be some mornings when kids are rushing to get ready.
Give the elementary students a list of school supplies and a set amount of time to collect one of each school supply provided. The tricky part is that all supplies will be placed jumbled up with miscellaneous other supplies in two or three different areas. Whichever student loads his or her backpack with all of the items fastest wins the game.
My School Through Art
Kids like to create art that reflects their own lives. Allow elementary students to paint a picture of their school or classroom. If they haven't seen it yet, take them to see it or ask them to be imaginative and come up with a picture of their ideal classroom. The only materials required for this fun back to school art project are paintbrushes, paints, art paper, and the imagination of the child. Some kids are not so neat with paints, so smocks or aprons may also be a good idea.
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Save Time and Frustration When Getting Kids Ready for School
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
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