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DIY Back to School Countdown Calendar

Get the kids excited for the new school year by helping create their very own DIY back to school calendar with this easy to follow tutorial.

Do you remember when you were a kid and summertime seemed like one big endless adventure? I remember what a shock it was to realize that summer was coming to an end and the new school year was right around the corner.

I was definitely channeling some nostalgia when I crafted this DIY back-to-school countdown calendar. It’s an easy way to encourage your kids to embrace the start of the new school year.

All you need to make your own version, is my downloadable CherylStyle back-to-school printable, craft paper, burlap wired ribbon, small clothespins and some paper treat bags. The concept is in the same vein as an advent calendar at Christmas time.

Each day is counted down with a treat bag filled with a variety of items that your kiddos will need for school–pencils, crayons, pens, homemade coupons for back-to-school outfits, etc. Your kids will look forward to seeing what they will be getting next and it will certainly get them excited about that first day back to school!

  • 2” wire burlap/jute ribbon
  • CherylStyle back-to-school countdown calendar printable PDF
  • Printer and paper
  • Colored or patterned craft paper
  • Hot glue gun and glue
  • Scalloped or regular scissors
  • Hole punch
  • Burlap ribbon
  • Vinyl numbers (found at craft or hardware store)
  • Small Reflections paper treat bags
  • Small clothespins
  • Kraft tags for coupons (to fit into treat bags)
  • Back-to-school treats (to fit into treat bags)

Step 1: Cut the wire burlap/jute ribbon to desired length for hanging on the bedroom door or wall.

Step 2: Download and print back-to-school countdown printables in Adobe Reader.

Step 3: Trim and glue printable to craft paper.

TIP: layer several pieces of colored or patterned craft paper and trim.

Step 4: Glue back-to-school countdown sign to top of wire burlap/jute ribbon.

Step 5: Punch holes near top corners of the sign.

Step 6: Thread ribbon and secure with knots at both ends.

Step 7: Put vinyl numbers on paper treat bags (numbers should start two weeks prior to your kid’s first day of school).

Step 8: Hang treat bags with small clothes pins from burlap ribbon.

Step 9: Fill treat bags with homemade coupons and/or back-to-school treats

TIP: homemade coupons could include a sleepover with friends, a pizza party, a swim party, shopping for a new backpack and school supplies, shopping for back-to-school clothes and shoes or getting a back-to-school haircut

Step 10: Hang the countdown calendar on your child’s bedroom door or wall!

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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