Georgia is now 4 and I can’t believe I am writing this but she is now in BIG SCHOOL! Wow what a crazy year 2020 has been. Coronavirus has had a huge impact on so many people, a lot of bad but some positives too! During all of this we had to get Georgia ready to start reception – here’s our journey !
Georgia has been in preschool for the past 2 years so she’s no stranger to it but I couldn’t help but feel a little sad when her preschool closed due to Coronavirus. I was worried she would miss out on the last few months and that it would have an impact on her starting school. My husband works in the travel industry so was furloughed from May meaning we were actually able to spend almost 4 months as a family of 3 which is something we’ve never been able to do. Looking back, even though for some of it we were locked down, we had the best time. We baked, we worked on our allotment, Georgia learned to ride her balance bike, we did PE with Joe and just spent a lot of quality time as a 3. When the restrictions started lifting we started visiting family and a select group of friends which was just what the doctor ordered. We were even lucky enough to fit in a family holiday to the South of France in early August. It really was the perfect run up to our baby starting school. We arrived back from France on 10 August and I hadn’t done anything school wise so thought I better get a move on.
I didn’t go to school in the UK so things were all a little foreign to me. My first challenge was understanding how to buy uniform – i ordered a few bits that were mandatory from the school uniform shop and then started scouring the internet for the rest – I love that school uniform is so affordable and you can pick it up from most supermarkets – there is so much choice for little girls – pinafores, gingham dresses, skirts, skorts, polos and trousers! I bought a couple of each and hoped for the best. We then booked an appointment to get her feet measured at Clarks – this was something I had struggled with during lockdown – i had no idea what the size of her feet were and because she’d not worn summer sandals since the previous summer she was in desperate need of new shoes. I did have to send a couple of pairs back as i’d ordered too big – one tip would be to purchase a kids shoe gauge which means you can measure in the comfort of your own home. I must say i was shocked at the price of school shoes but as they were her first pair, I let her choose and spent £40 on a very cute pair of patent leather shoes.
I got all of the uniform out and she tried it on – she looked so cute and I was a little bit emotional that my baby was starting school.
In the past, I had ordered stick on / iron on labels for her school stuff but this year I got in touch with Fran from Stamptastic as i’d seen them all over social media and they looked great. She sent me a deluxe bundle which includes a personalised name stamp, ink pad and one white fabric marker. This really is all you need to label everything. I am not joking when I say that I labelled every item of Georgia’s clothing (including shoes) in under 5 minutes. You personalise your name stamp with font and icon (which the kids can choose themselves from many) and the ink pad lasts up to 2 years if stored in the bag provided. A definitely thumbs up from me !
She was starting to get very excited. I was getting a little anxious – all the things the schools would normally do before starting reception could no longer be done (covid restrictions) so I was concerned about her turning up on day 1 not even having met her teachers, never mind the fact that she knew no other kids at the school!
Ok so it was day 1, we were up and dressed a whole hour before we needed to leave – excited or what ?? We left the house and walked up to school, the kids were having staggered start / pick up times for the first 2 days to help them settle. We lined up and in we went – We were greeted by one of the teachers who then directed us to another who marked Georgia’s name off and was extremely welcoming – she grabbed her bag, gave me a kiss and literally ran off into class. I am not a crier but I did get a little emotional – more just relief that she was happily running off into something new. Kids are so resilient – after 6 months of uncertainty she was ready and wanted to go and meet new friends and learn.
Georgia is quite a fussy eater so I was recommended to put her on school meals – the menu looked amazing, so varied and nutritious ! I had been speaking to her for a while about school dinners and even started making some of them meals I would choose for her in the lead up – i was hopeful but she’s now on day 4 and I don’t think eaten any of her lunches at school. I have heard that this is normal and that she will get there eventually. Fingers crossed !!
All in all, I am so happy with how she’s settled and how lucky we are to have what seems like a very welcoming school for her. Hopefully she will make lots of new friends and enjoy this journey – I am finding it strange not having my little person with me all the time, but I am sure I will find things to fill my time with. Good luck to all the kids and parents with kids starting school this year !