I’m so excited to share 3 quick tips for stress-free back to school photos in my first ever video! I am well and truly stepping out of my comfort zone to bring to some helpful tips to make taking those back to school/first day of school photos as stress-free as possible. This is aimed at those of you who have younger primary school age kids but can be adapted if you have teenagers. Watch the video below!
1. Mentally prepare them.
This goes a looooong way in helping get your children ready for anything. The first day back to school can be filled with so much emotion – so the more your child knows about what to expect, the fewer meltdowns you will encounter. (I’m no child psychologist, I just speak from experience with my own 3 little ones.) I like to tell my kids why I would like to have a “first day of school” photo (so we can see how much you have grown at the end of the year!) and how they are special to mum and dad (you are only in year 1 once!) Let them know where the photo will take place or get them to help you choose a place. Getting them involved adds to the ownership and control of the experience!
Drop it casually into conversations the week before school starts. If you see them smiling really nicely one day you could say “that is such a beautiful smile! That would be a great one for your back to school photo!” Have them practice some poses! All the better if you let them do some silly ones too! One more strategy worth mentioning is if they have a new item for school, like a backpack/hat/shoes/water bottle to use that a motivation to get in front of the camera. Try something like “Would you like to get a photo with your new backpack before we go to school?” can work a treat.
2. Keep it simple.
This is not the moment to start experimenting. For back to school photos, I recommend a full length and close up photo. Those of you with willing participants, let those kids be creative and pose as much as they want. If you have less than willing participants – now isn’t the time for Pinterest style props or setups. A photo at the front door with their backpack on (or off … you do you!) is all you need.
3. Go with the flow.
The first day back to school can be filled with so many emotions for parents and kids alike. You might experience your kid wanting to go to bed the night before in their uniform so they can be ahead of the game. Or they will wake up super early and be ready to go before you have even opened your eyes to welcome in the new day. In some case, sending you kid off to kindy for the first time (or in my case, sending my last kid off to kindy) makes you wonder where the time goes and water starts escaping from your eyes (I’m not crying, you are.)
Either way, there is a lot happening on day one. If you run out of time, or your kid is not wanting to get in front of the camera due to some anxiety about starting school, don’t force it. They might feel better about having a photo in their classroom instead or when they see their friends. If it’s really going pear-shaped, don’t feel bad about trying again the next day. Day 2 photos are just as special when you look back on them. Give yourself some grace!
Bonus tip! Keep your kids safe.
We love our kids and love sharing a proud parent moment. But please protect your kid if you plan on posting your back to school photos online. Don’t share their school, year level, or name in the photo or comments. I even worry about showing school colours but that’s just me. While I personally don’t post back to school photos online, my siblings and I send ours in our family group chat. I love seeing my nieces and nephews ready for a new school year!
Wishing you guys all the best for next week as schools go back here in Perth. Leave an emoji in the comments to show me how your feeling about school starting up again for 2021. While I have enjoyed the lazy mornings and not having to pack school lunches, I am more than excited for the start of the school year! Bring on 1st February!
ps. You might have notices that these tips have almost nothing to do with actually taking a photo! Stay tuned for my next video where I’ll share some tips for capturing back to school portraits!