The school holidays are over for another year and now it’s back to school for your little one. The first day of school for the year is just as exciting for both parents as it is for children and it can be easy to get caught up in all the school lists without thinking about capturing the memory in photo form to look back on.

Here we give you our top back to school photo tips to capture their first day perfectly! You’ll want to nail that back to school photo on the wall proudly after reading our top tips. Share your photos with us on Instagram & Facebook so we can see!

Tip #1 - Get creative

Involve your child in the process as much as possible! Ask them to help you create the photo frame which will be used to display their first day photo on your wall. Get the popsicle sticks and paint out, and make an afternoon of fun out of decorating their frame.

You could also place a piece of paper in the frame with their age and school year, and take a photo of your child holding the photo frame! At least if the frame deteriorates, the memory (and the photo) will remain intact.

School art supplies

Tip #2 - Measure progress

Create a digital record of your child’s growth and progress. Choose an object - a meter ruler, soft toy, chair, dining table, anything, and ask your child to stand next to it or hold it. Every year get a new photo with the same object and visually track the physical growth to share with friends and family.

By the time your child grows old enough, the will appreciate the story you have created for them. Extra credit: take a photo at the end of year with not only their height, but also written achievements they are proud of, photographed with them holding. They’ll love you for it!

Child planting tree

Tip #3 - Frame the photo

Aside from literally framing your photo, you’ll want to ensure the photo is shot in such a way that it highlights the subject and their background. Apply the rule of thirds and photograph your child in one third of the photo, leaving the final two thirds to capture the atmosphere.

This way of shooting works particularly well when shooting photos outdoors or in large spaces. Apply this rule when taking photos of your child’s first day at school - you can capture some precious moments outside of the main subject that you’ll appreciate later on.

Girl first day of school

Tip #4 - Create a story

Make it a first day ritual to get your child’s photo before the first school day. Decorate a new frame every year, and take it in the new spot - progress will be visual as well as memorable for both parent and child. When they have children of their own, they will likely carry on the tradition too!

Another idea is to photograph small moments of the first day including packing the school bag, meeting the teacher, and making new friends. These photos will be cherished for years to come.

Thinking about buying a new camera? Read our camera buying guide here.

School photos on iPad and iPhone