Thursday, September 8, 2016

Back(packs) to School

A few weeks ago (before school actually started), I did a program called "Back(packs) to School." There's not a lot to say about; it almost isn't even worth a blog post... except that despite how completely simple the whole thing was, it went really, really well!

This was for kids entering grades 1 through 5, and the books I picked were PERFECT (if I do say so myself). I read two of them: Frankie Stein Starts School by Lola M. Schaefer (a story about fitting in but from a cool, kind of gothy, monster perspective) and Jake Starts School by Michael Wright (a story about first day jitters with super funky illustrations and, BONUS!, it also includes a fart).

The kids seriously loved both books. They didn't even try acting bored to be cool (which at least a few kids usually do in this age group), but fully embraced the storytime! It was awesome.

Then we moved on to the craft: decorating canvas backpacks (these, from Oriental Trading) with fabric markers. Simple, no frills, and a crowd-pleaser!

Here are a few of the finished products:

Aaaaand the last finished product pictures I want to share can be seen at the top of the post. I did take a picture of this sweet kid (who also has a sweet family) solo-- but then he specifically requested a selfie with me. And even though I am 8-months pregnant and haven't seen a picture of myself that I've liked since Valentine's Day, I had no choice but to oblige. How do you say no to a selfie like the ones above?

What worked least: Nothin'. This was easy to do, easy to set-up, and the kids genuinely had a great time! I always worry that I'm going to have lots of clothing disasters when I use fabric markers, but with a steady record of firm, pre-craft warnings under my belt, so far so good. Hopefully I didn't just jinx it!

What worked best: Again, this program was so simple that there weren't a ton of elements that could go wrong. The books worked and the craft worked! A+ for Back(packs) to School!

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