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Back to School

It is Back to School Time

By Connie Colten

Back to School

Back to school. Does that phrase make you and your kids feel like there is a party and you aren’t invited? The retailers hit the media with their usual wham-bang to entice shoppers to the stores.

Most of us parents did return to school in the fall, so we feel the call of tradition as summer comes to an end. Personally I like to take the parts of the social traditions that I think are helpful and healthy and incorporate them into family life. Here are some suggestions of things that I’ve used or heard about to mark the passing of summer:

Stock Up!

Everyone loves new notebooks, pens, pencils, art supplies and all those kinds of things. Fall is the perfect time to stock up!

Make Goals

What are your goals for the upcoming months? We often sat down as a family and made lists of the places we wanted to go, the books and magazines we wanted to buy, and the individual goals we wanted to focus on during the upcoming “school” year.

Sign Up!

With the fall coming there are often a ton of classes and activities offered for un/homeschooling families. It is wise to limit your commitments so that you don’t feel you are under the scheduling pressure that probably was part of the reason you decided to have the kids learn at home in the first place. Remember we each have a lifetime to learn. When we are able to approach an activity with plenty of time and energy, it then refreshes us, gives us pleasure and encourages us to seek more learning opportunities.


Celebrate being on your own time schedule. Often once school starts and family vacation time ends it takes away the crowds from the favorite places you like to go to locally. We love going to the beach here in the San Diego area during September. The people are gone, parking for both the car and the beach blanket are spacious, the weather remains warm, and we feel especially lucky to have the freedom to be extending our summer pleasure.

Need a celebration to entertain the kids as their neighborhood friends head back to school? Have a “Not Back to School” party with people from the un/homeschooling community. It’s a great time to reconnect with these people and perhaps make plans for upcoming holidays, field trips or classes.

Have Fun!

Remember to have fun! Think of when your child was little and learning at that unbelievable speed that babies and toddlers use when absorbing life. We played and had fun with them through it all. There is no need to stop that now. In the words of Alfred Mercier, “What we learn with pleasure we never forget.”

Have a very pleasurable fall with your family!

Connie Colten
Homeschooling Reflections

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