Three easy ways to turn that annual first day of school photo into a memento you and your child will both love.
Project 1: Frame Up the First and Last Day
YOU'LL NEED A double photo frame; craft supplies of your choosing
THE PHOTO OP During the countdown to the start of school, have your child decorate the frame. She could paint it, attach stickers or glue on small wooden letters to spell out her grade level. Take a picture of your child outside that first morning, next to the front door or mailbox for scale. On the last day of school, replicate the shot. Place the pictures from fall and spring in the frame for a keepsake.
Project 2: First Day of School Scrapbook
YOU'LL NEED A computer and printer; markers; three-ring binder; hole punch
THE PHOTO OP In late summer, create a "worksheet." Type your child's grade level at the top. Below it, include a few fill-in-the-blank prompts. Think: "When I grow up, I want to be..." or "The last book I read was..." Leave room to attach a snapshot. At breakfast on the first day of school, have your child fill out the worksheet, putting his name on the top. Take a photo of him with his completed page, print it out and attach it to the worksheet. Save it in the binder, which you can add to each year.
Project 3: Amateur Photographer for a Day
YOU'LL NEED A disposable camera; a photo album
THE PHOTO OPS Surprise your kid with a fun—and decidedly low-tech—photography project. When she wakes up, hand her a single-use camera, and tell her she can spend free time during the day creating her very own photo-essay. Give a quick tutorial and set some rules (no snapping in class!), then let her loose to take pictures at the bus stop, lunch, recess and so on. Get the film developed and help her put the photos in the album.