I knew that big school would teach my kindergarten kid a lot, but I wasn’t prepared for the five things the start of big school would teach me.
This year I became the mother of a kindergarten (Qlders read prep) kid at big school and my littlest went back to preschool. I’ve been describing it as traumatic but as my little sister (so wise and too young) said to me it was never going to be a walk in the park. I think that’s where our problems lay. I thought it would be. I thought the big kid would like big school.
Nope, no he didn’t. The school kid didn’t like school and didn’t want to go. Which surprised me. He was a three day a week preschooler but school just wasn’t what he thought it would be. I don’t think it was what we thought it would be either.
Who knew there were traffic lights systems, reading books, canteen rosters, lettering sheets, munch and crunch, assembly, school book covering, no pencil cases, dojos, tokens, water bottles on your desk, art smocks.
As we head into week four, the good news is the big kid and I now understand the traffic lights. This occured after a intimate encounter with the orange light. Since then we have managed to stay off them and out of the principal’s office (although he did make it in there for an award). He has stopped saying he doesn’t want to go to school (unless he’s singing that catchy pop tune of the same title) and today he lined up by himself with one of his new friends. Little steps.
I bet there’s more than five things I’ll learn as the weeks and months go by but for starters here’s the top five things the start of big school has taught me, that might help you:
5 things the start of big school will teach you
- Time management. There is no wandering in to school after you’ve put the washing on, tidied the bench, picked out what you’re going to wear and had a bit of a melt down. Leave it all. Have an essential must do list ie breakfast, teeth, dress etcetera then get the washing on. And a no brainer for me is making lunch the night before it cuts down the hassle. You need to be there for the 8.55am first bell. No worries if you’re not but be prepared for the walk of shame and the 21 tiny pairs of eyes and one adult pair of eyes on you as you walk your little one into class (PS that hasn’t happened yet but I know it’s coming!)
- Conflict resolution. Your small person may want garanteen (canteen) everyday or they may want to stay home and have a pyjama day. You will become good at fielding these requests and offering solutions, such as pyjama Saturday or garanteen on Friday’s.
- Detective skills. The brown paper bag tuckshop order has come home unopened and money in tact, what did they have for lunch? Their second course ice block of course oh and the munch and crunch you put in. Get one of their reliable small friends to remind them to take their tuckshop order out and put it in the basket at the start of the day or ask/email the teacher to see if they could remind them. It’ll only need one showing how to and they’ll be on to it. Taking the order to the garanteen at lunch time will be too late, their won’t be any party pies left. Why didn’t the yoghurt get eaten? Because you didn’t put the spoon in mum!
- Memory skills. You will have parents and children coming at you from all angles. Maria is mum to Luke and Georgia is mum to Della how are you every going to remember them all. Write it in the notes section of your iphone or on the printed class list, write the parent’s names next to the child. Your memory isn’t what it used to be.
- Diary management. See tip number one. You now have two children in preschool and school. There are pick ups, drop offs, swimming, soccer, hip hop dance classes to coordinate and that’s just the daily stuff. Then there’s tuckshop rosters, mass, reading, sports day, news day, parents and friends meetings. But don’t worry, the time you have left is all your’s….. as long as you turn around and get back to school by three!
Everyday reveals something new, I’d love to know what have you learnt from the start of big school?