Parents and kids nationwide have been busy buying backpacks, pencils and glue. We’re ready for the school year! But after that big first day is over, then what? How about making fun back to school treats to end the school day in style?
My girls always looked forward to the treats I make for the first day of school almost as much as the first day itself. Here are some ideas:
- A School Bus Cake (or cookies or cupcakes) are a fun way to celebrate for younger kids. Buy (or make) sugar cookie dough; cut the dough into school bus shapes, bake, and frost with yellow icing. M&M’s make great wheels, and you can be as creative as you’d like.
- Handprint Cookies are great for preschoolers. The night before school, trace your child’s hand on paper and cut it out. Then, use this as a pattern for cutting sugar cookie dough into hand shapes. Bake, and let your child have fun decorating the hand (girls especially enjoy “painting” the fingernails with different colors of frosting and sprinkles).
- Back to School Cookie Puzzle is for those of you feeling motivated to try something big! Roll out sugar cookie dough, and then cut out various shapes that have relevance for your child (maybe a soccer ball, a musical instrument, a book). You will bake the shapes separately from the remaining dough outline, and then decorate. Your kids will be sure to have fun taking the puzzle apart as they eat it!
- Cookie Pops are a lot of fun. Basically, you will make the dough of your choice and then insert craft sticks into the dough before baking it (a word of advice: be sure to insert the stick far enough, or the cookie will fall off). You can make these round and decorate them as faces, or make cookies resembling teddy bears, pencils, crayons, or any other school-related theme.
- Gum Drop Cookies are a nostalgic treat. This recipe features a hearty oatmeal cookie chock-full of colorful gum drops. It’s a nod to simpler times, and the kids are sure to enjoy the bright, colorful candies.
Finally, if all these ideas make you feel tired, simplify. It’s the first day back to school, so don’t try to over-achieve just yet. My kids love a pan of brownies with colored sprinkles or M&M’s on top. In the baking aisle at the store, you can also buy individual-size aluminum foil baking cups in fun shapes like hearts and starts. Little extra touches like this turn an everyday treat into something special. Your kids will appreciate the time you took to make their back to school treat something out of the ordinary.
What’s your favorite back to school treat for the kids in your life?