Summer is unofficially here and the kiddos are finally ready to pack away the book bags and pencil sharpeners and break out the swim shorts and sun tan lotion.  Nothing is as exciting as that last day of school when you know you have a full summer break ahead of you.  But before your kids leave their school days behind them, be sure to capture the moment with one of these last day of school traditions.

Take a pic. You probably already captured the first day of school with a picture, right?  Now you can use that pic to create a fun memory for the last day.  Print out the first day picture and have kids hold it while posing in the same pose for the last day.  It's such a great visual reminder of how much they have grown and changed that school year.  And if you really want to make a memory, have your graduating senior hold a picture of his first day of kindergarten, like this blogger did.

Thank a teacher.  This is not so much an end-of-year ritual as it good manners.  Encourage your kids to write a thank you note to their teachers that lets them know specific things that they have learned this year with their teacher's help.  This is a great stand alone gift for a teacher or it could also be accompanied by a small gift or flowers.  It's also a fantastic way for your kids to look back on the year and remember how far they have come.

Backyard battle.Chances are, your kids will be bursting with energy and excitement on the last day of school.  So why not channel all of that energy into a backyard battle of your kids choosing? Squirt guns, water balloons, water melons spitting, shaving cream, or even just a fun game of tag.  Just grab your kids, their friends, toss them in the backyard and watch the fun explode.

Treat 'em right. Your last day of school tradition doesn't have to be elaborate to be memorable.  Take your kids for an afternoon treat - think ice cream, a trip to the bookstore, or a movie.  Drink lemonade, take a walk, or have lunch at your favorite restaurant.  Just do the same thing every year and it will become something your kids look forward to as much as summer break itself.

Do you have any favorite last day of school traditions?  Please share!

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