In my case, my first day of kindergarten was a complete disaster. My mom was a second grade teacher at my school and I remember arriving early in the morning, before any of the kids, to put the finishing touches on her classroom. But before that, she took the time to walk me down the hall to my kindergarten classroom and introduce me to my teacher, Mrs. Roller, who seemed nice. "You'll have to walk back here by yourself when the bell rings," my mom told me. "I'm going to wait in my class because I need to be there to meet my new second graders when they arrive."
It all sounded nice and easy, just a quick walk down the hall and around the corner. However, when the bell finally rang and the flood gates opened and hoards of children poured in around me, I froze. I was shorter than everyone else and I couldn't see down the hall or remember which way to go. Eventually, the halls cleared and a neighbor lady saw me crouched in a corner crying and took me by the hand to the right class. Kindergarten was pretty great when I actually got there, but even as a teacher, I get pretty nervous about the first day.
This year my sweet little 5-old-nephew is entering kindergarten and of course I want him to have the best school experience possible from day one. To help create a positive experience for him, I created a little care package to help him adjust to the first two weeks of school. Each day he'll get a little treat or a school supply to make that day a little extra special. (School starts on a Wednesday this year, so the first week is only 3 days long). Here's what I put together:
Step One: The Supplies
Using my circle punchers, I simply punched out a bunch of small white circles, numbered them DAY 1 - DAY 8, and then glued them on to colored construction paper that I had punched out with a slightly larger cutter.
I decided to use the colors of the rainbow and to write the days of the week because it will reinforce some of things he'll be learning in kindergarten.
Next came the fun part of finding a daily treat!
Day 2 (Thursday): He'll feel better about erasing those mistakes with this zany peanut-shaped eraser purchased for only a dollar from the always delightful Paper Hammer stationary store in downtown Seattle. (FYI--many classrooms are now "allergy free," so this kind of peanut will be the only kind allowed in!) You can grab a whole bag of peanut erasers from Kikkerland here for $4, and they sell cute mustache erasers for the little hipster crowd!
Day 3 (Friday!): I usually try to go organic, but these goofy yellow Despicable Me fruit snacks were on sale at Target ($1.50 / 10 packs) and the characters were too cheery to pass up. (I've been stuffing them in college care packages, too!) My usual faves, Annie's Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks in Pink Lemonade, are on sale this week too!
Weekend Snack: Lollipops aren't the best for school (you can't eat them in class and it's dangerous to run with them in your mouth after lunch at recess), but they're a fan favorite in this household and a perfect treat to suck on when you're practicing writing your A B C's. Pick up a whole pack of uniquely flavored organic pops at Trader Joe's for only a few dollars.
Day 5 (Tuesday): This happy whole-grain granola creature will make a yummy post-lunch snack. $2.69/box of 10 at www.target.com.
Day 6 (Wednesday): Is that a sweet potato hidden in your fruit leather? He'll never notice the difference with this treat from Naked Edge Snacks. Buy a variety pack of Veggie-Go's here (Box of 20/$27.79) and stuff your little one full of veggies with ease.
Day 7 (Thursday): Going to school and getting a little chocolate out of it will seem like a fair trade indeed. You can buy your own Equal Exchange Organic Dark Chocolate Mini Display Box for $35 and be set 'til the holidays!
Day 8 (Friday): Barbara's Organic Chocolate Chip Cookie Snackimals packs, $1.10, are an instant favorite and even the individual packs are generous enough that he'll be happy to share some with a friend.
The Weekend: You can't get away with chewing gum in class, but he'll have fun practicing his bubble-blowing and his math skills by subtracting the total sticks of gum minus a piece for everyone in the family. Orbit bubble mint gum, less than $2/pack at grocery stores and gas stations.