Just as important as getting children to understand the importance of an education is the need to excite them about it. Beginning with middle schoolers, children shift their attitude about learning from openly receptive to overly critical. If only they could appreciate how their education will reveal the many wonderful mysteries of the world. If only they could learn to enjoy the trip of a lifetime — learning!
To spark kids’ enthusiasm for the semester ahead, I like to encourage back-to-school parties. Not just to meet new classmates and the teacher, but to, more importantly, instill a sense of awe and adventure about learning. This is especially true for middler schoolers and older students. For many of them, education has become a burden.
In preparation for this post, I looked for back-to-school party ideas on Pinterest (yes, Dr. Bob is on Pinterest). The creativity shown on different boards can be used to coordinate some very original parties with educational themes, a book-nic, for example, instead of a pic-nic. Or how about an art class, phys ed or computer lab theme? If you choose the latter, make gummy bears in the “lab” using first salt water and then tap water. Can the kids tell the difference?
Activities? Make edible DNA, introduce the idea of brainstorming or have a spelling bee. Refreshments? Serve brain cupcakes, fossil cookies and bookworms. Prizes? T-shirts that say, “Keep Calm and Enjoy Learning.”
If all this sounds a bit frivolous, think again. We need to inject more joy, humor and excitement into every child’s education. To help you do that, take a look at the ideas provided in these links. You’ll be inspired to inspire your child.
Fossil Cookies Recipe