Ellen was all smiles this morning as I dropped her off at school - after all she had no backpack, and the day was scheduled for fun and a field trip. It is the change in routine that I think makes everyone happy. I think this day is as exciting as the first day of school - when the summer routine changes also. Like a vacation, it "shakes up" the normal activities.
I remember summers fondly growing up. Whether it was tennis lessons, vacation bible school, or just playing basketball, ping pong and summer board games with friends, summer was a time to mentally relax. There were still responsibilities - the business of mowing lawns and house chores. But filling each day was flexible decision process.
Some have advocated a year long schedule of school since the tradition of summers off was due to the rural farming schedule. As I reflect on the excitement of a changing schedule, I think maintaining the "last day of school" is a good tradition.