What We’ve Learnt From Half A Term At School

What We’ve Learnt From Half A Term At School

So, the biggest boy has finished his first half term at school. It’s been a long, tiring and at times frustrating 6 weeks but we made it. So, what have we learnt?

1. They get really, really tired
The stroppy, difficult child arrived after 1 week of full time school. The sulking and teenage display of not wanting to get out of bed in the morning is most amusing!

2. They don’t appreciate going to school on their birthday
Refer to this post. I had to drag him to school kicking and screaming as he desperately wanted to stay at home. Not one of my finest parenting moments but, within 5 minutes of being in class he was fine!

3. They are really missed at home
Both me and his brother really miss him. O has lost his play mate and runs to hug him as soon as he’s out of school. They used to try to kill each other but now they hate being apart!

4. They think their teachers are superheroes
“My teacher says this”, “my teacher does it this way”! Mummy is suddenly always wrong! I’ve been replaced by another woman in his life!

5. They have a really great time
He comes home from school telling me it was OK and he didn’t do much but, parents evening and the weekly reports we get from his teacher tell another story. Apparently, he’s really enjoying himself.

6. It’s not as hard as I thought to get 4 children dressed and out the door
I’m not the playground Mum I thought I’d be. I thought I’d be the one tearing down the road late with half dressed kids in tow. Instead, I’m one of the first at school, fully dressed and even sometimes with make up on! Go me!

7. The big boy attitude sucks
I always thought he behaved like a teenager but that was before we started school and took sarcasm and bad tempers to a whole other level!

School – Day 2

School – Day 2

It’s 10.30 and I’m sat sobbing into my cup of tea absolutely exhausted. It’s not because I’m missing my baby now he’s at school but, because of this mornings epic fight to get him to school.

I got them all up slightly earlier this morning as I thought he might be a bit reluctant to go to school again today. He was awake in the middle of the night for no apparent reason and today is his 5th birthday. I thought I would allow myself a bit of extra time.

The extra time I allowed was about 3 hours too little! He was fine eating his breakfast but then things went downhill. He refused to get dressed. He kicked me (and his sisters) while I tried to fight him into his uniform. He was screaming so loudly the neighbours came round to find out if we were OK.

His friend knocked on the door to walk with us to school and he stood there, in his pants, and shouted at him. I’m guessing we’ll be walking to school on our own from now on!

By 9am, when he should have been in school, he was dressed in just pants and socks in the hall with all his siblings screaming in the living room.

I did eventually get him dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, loaded in the car and delivered to school reception with his uniform in a bag. I sat outside the school and cried. I know it’s a massive change and he’s the first to go to school but how can he hate it so much already?

I was scrapped off the ground by another Mum who offered me tissues, a hug and a partially melted bar of chocolate! She was lovely and I guess upset reception parents aren’t a rarity. 

I really thought he’d enjoy school. He’s been looking forward to it for months and is finally reunited with his best friend again. I’m going to speak with his teacher when I pick him up at lunch. I’m sure he’s not the only new pupil to not want to go to school. I’m hoping she can help as I just don’t know what to do with him. Please tell me this gets easier.

Term Time Holidays

Term Time Holidays

I’ve never really had an opinion on the ‘holiday in term time’ debate as I’ve never had children of school age before but, in the last few months, this has become a hot topic in our household. The reason being, we are off to Mexico in May for my brother-in-laws wedding and the biggest boy will end up missing 2 weeks of school.

image

The holiday has been subject to much debate as it’s costing a small fortune and it’s money I had earmarked for our first Disney holiday. Although it’s not Florida, I love the idea of us having a family holiday with lots of extra pairs of helping hands nearby as attempting to fly with 4 small children fills me with dread. But,I hate the fact that B will miss 2 weeks worth of school.

We had no choice over the dates of this holiday as, due to the grooms job, he has to take his holiday at certain times of the year. I tried telling hubby that we shouldn’t really go as it’s not fair to take B out of school but that meant asking him to miss his brothers wedding which didn’t go down very well.

We’ve had people say that it doesn’t matter as it’s just his first year at school and he’s not going to miss anything important but, I disagree. All education is important. His first year at school is one of the most important as he is getting used to being in an educational setting while learning the very basics which he’ll need to build on over the years.

I know teachers hate it (my friends have told me as much) but I will be asking his teacher if there is anything we can do while we’re away so he doesn’t slip behind. I also fully intend to have B working while we’re away on holiday. I am on the lookout for a camera for him so he can take pictures and make a holiday diary that he can show to his friends when he gets home.

During a visit to the primary school before we made our choice, we discussed term time holidays with the headteacher. He wasn’t overly concerned about it and said as it was an exceptional circumstance he would authorise the absence for us. Unfortunately, since that meeting, the headteacher has changed! I now have to go and make an appointment with the new headteacher and hope she’ll authorise the holiday. I’m going to feel like such a naughty girl sitting outside her office before the meeting!

This will probably be our one and only chance to go on a Caribbean holiday with the children as the cost during the school holidays is ridiculous and flying on our own with 4 children is just stupidity! I know we’ll most likely have a great time but, I can’t get excited as I know B shouldn’t be out of school.

How do you feel about taking children out of school for holidays? Do you worry about the effect on their education or do you think that children are still learning while they’re away?

Tuesday Twinkler
Off To School

Off To School

The uniform has been purchased and labelled, the induction sessions completed and now the summer holidays are drawing to a close. This can only mean one thing, the biggest boy is off to school – woohoo!

He is incredibly excited and I know he’ll be just fine as he’s the oldest in the class. He was more than ready to go last year but, due to his tardiness of not arriving on his due date (thanks son), he’s had to wait a whole extra year.

The excitement of him starting school ends here though as his introduction to school is the world’s biggest ball ache! I understand it’s a massive change and that some children are a lot younger than others but, it hasn’t gone down too well in my newly returned to workplace that I need to have the whole of September off!

This is because the boys school do a very, very, almost painfully slow, gradual introduction. The first 2 days are just an hour which barely gives me enough time to drag my other 3 back home before I have to turn around and go back again. It’s a small village school and there is nowhere to go to waste an hour either.

The following 2 weeks he finishes at 12 which at least gives me time to get home and let the 2 year old rest! The final 2 weeks of the introduction extends the school day to include lunch before going home at 1.30. I have nobody else who can do the pick ups at this time of day so I’m having to take the entire month off work. My company were not particularly impressed when my parental leave application went in!

Most children in this day and age have been doing long days at nursery for some time so I’m wondering if such a drawn out introduction is necessary. Other local schools have shorter days for a week or 2 but I’ve yet to find another who take such a long time to settle the children in.

I know I’m looking at it from an older child’s perspective and will probably write a very different article in 3 years time when my twins, having just turned 4, head off to school. But, I’m really interested in hearing other parents views of their child’s introduction to school. Is anybody else faced with a whole month of shorter school days?

5 Great Things About My June

5 Great Things About My June

I can’t believe it’s June already! May has been a very busy and exciting month. We had lots of time with Daddy at home and we all had a holiday. The kids went off to their grandparents and we took a trip to Alton Towers.

June is looking much, much quieter thankfully.

1. Trip To London
We have family coming to visit from Italy and the only way to get everyone together is to meet in Central London. Not ideal with 4 small children but with my parents help and 2 slings we can hopefully do it without pushchairs and without losing any children!

2. Parents Evening
It’s introduction evening at B’s new school. We’ll get the opportunity to meet his teacher and the new headteacher plus order his uniform. I’ve been warned to take my tissues as they show a tearjerker of a video!

3. First School Visit
Following on from parents evening, B has his first visit to his new school to meet his new classmates. He’s very excited!

4. A Catch Up With My Bestie
We’ve known each other since we were 2 and used to live just 10 doors apart but since I moved from London and we both had kids, we don’t get to spend as much time together. Our catch ups usually involve lots of wine and chatting (plus the odd husband moan). I miss her so much but I know she’s always on the end of the phone if I need her.

5. Tour Of Cambridgeshire Cycle Race
Although a massive inconvenience to us if we want to travel anywhere, the cycle race is coming through our village. We thought the boys would like to go and watch all the cyclists coming through and see what’s going on. It’s not very often something like this comes to our sleepy village.

Big Boy Growing Up

Big Boy Growing Up

We got our primary school place – hooray! But, the joy at receiving our first choice school was tinged with a sadness. It’s time to admit that my baby boy is growing up and will be off to school in September.

I have to confess to waiting up until midnight to find out his place. But after the initial sigh of relief, I did shed some tears. My first born will no longer be at home with me all day. My sidekick for the last 4 and a half years, gone!

I have quite often said that I couldn’t wait for him to go to school so he wasn’t around to cause trouble all day. But, most of the time he is a joy to have around. He is a fantastic big brother and the amount of help he gives me with his sisters is amazing.

I know it was inevitable it was going to happen but, I’m not sure I’m ready for the next stage in his life. I know he is more than ready for this new challenge and will probably enjoy every minute of it. His thirst for knowledge is incredible. There can’t be many children who ask to do their times tables before bed!

After saying I wouldn’t cry when he started school, only celebrate, I know the tears will fall as my biggest boy steps into the classroom for the first time. I’m welling up just thinking about it. I’m sure I won’t be the only emotional parent at the school gates on their first day in September.

The Twinkle Diaries
5 Great Things About My April

5 Great Things About My April

1. The girls Christening

We unfortunately had to postpone this in January due to a death in the family but the girls will finally get their Christening day this month. This month has worked out slightly better in a way as they are now being Christened by the same vicar that married us and Christened the boys.

2. Finding out which school B is going to

I have been stressing about this for months. We moved house at the end of 2013 to get into the catchment area of a great village school. It is always oversubscribed but I’m fairly confident we should get a place. I cannot wait for B to go to school. As a September baby, he is more than ready for school and I know he’ll love it.

3. Easter

The kids don’t tend to eat too many sweets and we only finished eating last year’s eggs in February! No doubt the same relatives who didn’t listen last year will fill the house with chocolate again! I will have that dreadful task of helping to eat the eggs. It’s always such a hardship!

4. My birthday

I am the big 3-0! Of course, when people ask my age, I will still respond with 21! I’m not looking forward to this birthday but who does! I wonder if hubby will remember! I’ve been dropping plenty of hints about what I want to do for my birthday. I went all out for his last year with a weekend away. He better remember that!

5. Thomas Land at Drayton Manor

I am going to brave it and take both boys to Thomas Land on my own. I thought I would give their parent and toddler days a try as neither of the boys are at school yet. Really looking forward to trying out Thomas Land and so are the boys. I wonder how I’ll get on taking them both on my own though!

Binky Linky

Follow me on Bloglovin