In this post I will be sharing some simple tips to help you take super cute back-to-school photos of your kids, and sharing free printable homeschool first and last day of school posters.
Anyone with a cell phone camera and some tricks up their sleeve can take amazing photos of their adorable kids for special occasions like the first day of school.
Back-to-School Photo Posters Free Printable
Don’t have a chalkboard or letterboard handy? No problem! I made you a set of printable Back-to-School posters and matching Last Day of School posters that you can easily print off for your kids to hold in the photos. Be sure to grab you free printable below!
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My DIY Back-to-School Photo Tips
The tips I have for you are on lighting and location, clutter, getting kids to smile, and so on. I am not a professional photographer by any means! I use my phone to take photos and I have never even taken a photography course (its on my list!). You can get some really cute photos with just 5 intentional minutes set aside and these may be the ones you (or grandma!) will treasure forever. I promise I will update this post when I get around to taking out back-to-homeschool photos this year. It’s a ritual I really enjoy!
Where Should I Take Homeschool Back-to-School Photos?
Here are my tips on choosing a location for your Back-to-School Photo Session.
- It is really nice when you can do a beginning and end-of-year photo in the same location. That makes it easy to see how much your child has grown! You may want to choose a place you can easily revisit (like your front porch!).
- Some ideas of fun locations for photos: a tree or bush in your yard, the stairwell inside your home, your front porch, or a brick wall.
Lighting Your Photos:
- If you are taking your photos indoors, turn off the lights because they create funny shadows on faces. Instead, have your kids face a window in the natural light.
- If you are outdoors and it is overcast, great! You can easily take great photos on an overcast day.
- If it is sunny outdoors, take photos in the full shade if possible. Sunny photos causes squinty eyes and can make your kids feel frustrated or uncomfortable. Additionally, dappled sunlight doesn’t make for great photos as there is too much contrast in the lighting. If you can’t do shade, have your kids face their shadow! This will avoid squinting and glare and also help flatten the light.
- Make sure you are being intentional about what you include in the photo. You can either crop in or quickly remove clutter that may be right in your frame.
- Decide in advance whether or not you want their school bag, lunch kit, jacket etc in the photo because a photo with a few kids and everyone’s bags can get cluttered quickly.
- Decide if you want them to hold a “First Day of School” sign or a chalkboard or letterboard (tip: you can easily use an app to “write” on the chalkboard later). I have included a printable for you with each grade and the option to have the word “homeschool” on there too!
- The angle you take the photo from will change the perspective of the photo.
- Be sure to get at your kids level versus standing way above them.
- If you take a photo from above, have them tilt their face up to you.
How to Capture Adorable Smiles:
- Those lovely little faces are the most important part of this whole back-to-school photo rigmarole. Make sure to talk to them, engage them or tell a joke before you take their photo.
- Give your child power by letting them choose how to pose for a photo, then taking turns with you.
- Smiling with teeth always looks more natural so if your kid is smiling self-consciously, being a little goofy may help them smile more naturally.
Editing Your Photos:
- If you pop your photos into the free version of the Lightroom app and crop them in a bit if needed and hit the Auto button, you will instantly have a better photo. It is worth the 20 seconds! If you feel like playing around with the settings, go for it! You can always hit the undo button.
If you love taking DIY photos of your kids and family, you may want to consider spending a little on a simple cell phone tripod to up your photo game. Small ones are super affordable and they usually come with a clicker, so you can take pictures remotely via Bluetooth connection.
Have a great back-to-school photo session!
I hope you enjoyed my mom-to-mom, non-photographer tips for taking simple and adorable back to school photos of your kids! Be sure to grab your free printable and happy back-to-school!
First Day of School Posters for homeschool
This is a 30-page PDF download that has all the grades with and without “homeschool” written on and with the school year of 2021-2022. For Last Day of School posters, scroll down.
- My First Day of Kindergarten
- My First Day of Preschool
- My First Day of Grade One, Two, Three etc.
- My First Day of First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, etc
- My First Day of Homeschool Kindergarten, Grade One, Two, etc.
- My First Day of Homeschool First Grade, Second Grade, etc.
- My First Day of Junior High
- My First Day of Highschool
- … and more!
Last Day of School Posters for homeschool
This is a 60+ page PDF download with all the grades listed for the school year 2021-2022.
The poster captions read:
- Last Day of Pre-K
- Last Day of Preschool
- Last Day of Kindergarten
- Last Day of Junior/Senior Kindergarten
- Last Day of First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, etc.
- Last Day of Grade One, Grade Two, Grade Three etc.
- Last Day of Homeschool Kindergarten, Grade One, First Grade etc.
- Last Day of Highschool
- Last Day of Homeschool
- …and more!
Notes on Printing First and Last Day of School Posters
These posters are designed in a minimalist black and white design. They are printer ink friendly. Be sure to select the pages you need for this year in your printer settings to save paper and ink.
Classic Design Posters
This simple design with a nature motif will stay in style throughout you child’s schooling, so you can keep your photos consistent.
Don’t forget to pin this so you can refer back next year!
If you’re new here, welcome!
I hope you enjoyed your homeschool first and last day of school posters. Let me know if you use them! Why not stick around and check out some of my other educational printables from my printables library?