It's that time of year again. The school holidays that seemed to stretch into the distance just a month or so back, have evaporated surprisingly quickly. There's a freshness in the air, the days seem to be getting shorter and it's time to get the school uniform out again, if your child can still fit into it!
Chances are though, that your child will have shot up over the last six months so that during summer you will have had to invest in some new school uniform. Internet shopping has never been so useful especially if the thought of traipsing down the high street fills you and your child with horror.
Perhaps your child is moving up a year still at the same school, so the new term is a chance to catch up with friends after the holidays and find out what their new teacher is really like and get used to their new classroom.
One autumn my daughter told me she'd heard there was a ghost in her new classroom, which was right at the top of a Victorian school building so that made the start of term a little more edgy.
For some families this new academic year will bring huge changes. If you have a child starting in Infants
this is a big transition to make for both them and you. At reception level though, it will mainly be learning through play, in a completely different setting from nursery
and they will be encouraged to become more independent.
I remember feeling very emotional when my eldest first started at Infants and desperately trying to hide it from him so he would not feel worried. It's worth being honest about it and talking to a friend you trust.
For others, it might be that you have a son or daughter moving on to secondary school
. Your child will probably be both excited and a little fearful about their new start. It's a bit like snakes and ladders, having been the oldest at primary, they will revert to being the youngest again, being jostled in the corridors by teenagers who are almost fully grown adults.
On the plus side they will be given new opportunities to do subjects
in greater depth such as Food Technology, Music, Art, Languages as well as a range of extra curricular activities. I remember my son making lasagne and bringing it home for us to sample. Even though it had been a bit mangled in his bag, it was a big moment.
Having had four children start at primary and now moving on through secondary, I have noticed that each one has reacted differently to the transfer to a new school. It seems like there's no way of predicting how things will be for them. That's why I try to make time in the first week or so for a special outing or activity with each child to mark the new start, even though getting back into the school routine is probably harder for me than it is for them!