I adore school holidays and the freedom and lack of order and routine that comes with them (and I really love not having to make school lunches). But come mid January, I’m more than ready to go back to work/school and get back into a routine and establish a bit of order once again – I’m a librarian – I like a system and a bit of order in my life! It also helps that I love my job, and my children enjoy going to school.
I do rather relish the whole ‘back to school season’ as new school shoes, books to be labelled and covered and hair accessories to be purchased make me happy. Stationery and hair accessory shopping really is most excellent – brown school shopping is not quite as fun but still involves shoe shops and coffee/cake breaks. I probably need more of a life, but I love shiny new school things and spruced up hand-me-down things. ChickPea, being the second child, is well-used to hand-me-down clothes and announced loudly in a children’s clothing store recently that she really didn’t like the things in the shop and that the ‘Hand-Me-Down Shop’ was her favourite shop in the world. Suits me.
For personalised labels and stationery, I use Identity Direct (their labels don’t budge and I don’t have to take out a loan to purchase them – sheeesh labels are over-priced!). You can read about our stationery here.
For lunchbox ideas see here.
This coming January, Dear Ole ChickPea, who seems to be have been on this earth for a loooong time already, is finally starting school and we are all immensely happy about this situation – except that we won’t get our once a week ‘mini-break’ as there will no longer be mid-week sleepovers at grandparents for her. Not that we don’t entirely adore her but, you know, one less child and all that…
Do you have a little person starting school for the first time? ChickPea is so incredibly ready to start Prep, and one will be one of the older students so she really is raring to go – althrough she’s only ever done a five day fortnight so I envisage some major meltdowns in Term One by the end of each week! Not all litlte people feel so sure about the whole situation and not all parents feel ready to send their child off into the big wide world of the classroom and the playground. For those parents or children not so sure, may I highly, highly recommend ‘The Big Hugs’ series, in particular for starting school, ‘The Playground is Like a Jungle’ and ‘Friendship is Like a Seesaw’ – so worth the investment.
Whether they are super confident, or feeling apprehensive, children’s books are a great way to introduce new experiences such as starting school or going back to school. Books are a way of entering the world of the classroom from the safety of a bedroom or the lap of a loved parent or grandparent.
I’m a big fan of using books to introduce new experiences as it gives young children the vocabulary to properly articulate how they may be feeling and introduces those new words and their meanings. I have books here on visiting the dentist for the first time, books here on learning to swim and I even books on here on toilet training (loved these books and hated them with equal measure!). Feelings, emotions and loss of a loved one are also topics we’ve explored as a family with books…see here and here.
The books I love most about school are below. There are many more out there but these are ones I know and love and come back to time and time again. ‘Twig’ is the latest addition to my list of favourites and it’s just beautiful. You will come back to it time and time again, just look at the book trailer below!
Click on title links or cover images to purchase.
‘Starting School’ (2013), written by Jane Godwin and illustrated by Anna Walker, Penguin Books Australia.
‘First Day’ (2013), written by Andrew Daddo and illustrated by Jonathan Bentley, Harper Collins.
‘I am Too Absolutely Small for School’ (2003) written and illustrated by Lauren Child, Candlewick Press.
‘Grug Goes to School’ (2009), written and illustrated by Ted Prior.
‘Starting School’ (1988), written by Janet Ahlberg and illustrated by Allan Ahlberg, Viking.
‘Do I Have to Go to School’ (2006), written by Pat Thomas and illustrated by Lesley Harker, Hodder Children’s Press.
‘Fiona the Pig’s Big Day’ (2006), written and illustrated by Leigh Hobbs, Penguin Books. CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT – borrow from your local library.
‘I Don’t Want to Go to School’ (2000), written by Christine Harris and Craig Smith, Random House Australia. CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT – borrow from your local library.
‘Millie Starts School’ (2001), written by Jane Godwin and illustrated by David Cox, Puffin. CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT – borrow from your local library.
The titles of each book takes you to the Australian based online bookstore Booktopia. You can also compare prices on Fishpond and Bookworld for Australian purchases.If you live in the US or would prefer to use Amazon click here. If you live in the UK or would prefer to use Book Depository click here. Purchases clicked through from the Children’s Books Daily site result in a small commission. Commission is used in part to maintain Children’s Books Daily and to support community groups which connect children with books.