The summer is coming to an end, many children have been homeschooled by their parents since the lockdown began in March- gosh... that seems an age ago.
For children starting school, this can be a nervous time and for children returning, this may almost feel alien. This school year will be different. Almost like a new environment but schools are ready to welcome back pupils and get education back on track.
I have put together some tips for getting first-time pupils ready. As I previously worked in a primary school, I used my experience to make these relaxed tips, helping you ease your little ones into the change. The most important thing to remember, is that this isn't scary, make it fun and exciting for your child.
Number One: Teach your child how to spell their name
They may know their name by sound, but get your child used to seeing their name on a page. Start by drawing dots, make it a game, when the dot are together, they form their name. Your child doesn’t have to know it perfectly, Reception child usually learn with a teacher in the first term. But even having practise holding a pencil will give them a start. This will just reassure them that they will be able to read and write soon. Some children could get upset if they see others know how to do something they can't, but just continue enjoying learning together and having fun.
Number Two: Getting toilet trained
If your little one hasn't completely mastered this yet, don't panic. Just inform the teacher. Have spare underwear in their school bag, so they don't feel embarrassed or have to be wet all day. Just practise a routine with them - how to use the bathroom, how to wipe, flush, wash hands and how to use their new school inform properly, show them any buttons they should use when in the toilet etc. Hygiene is very important, share your knowledge about germs and Coronavirus.
Number Three: School Uniform
For most children going to school for the first time this will be their first uniform. So make it exciting to wear, get them to try it (maybe only a few days or night before). Going shopping together, pick out a fun packed lunch box, water bottle or pencil case. This can really help them prepare mentality for the change ahead.
Number Four: Relax and Communicate
Ask your children about how they feel and if they have any worries talk to them. Make them feel confident to come to you for anything. Tell them you'll be super excited to pick them up afterwards and you will want to know everything that has gone on in their day. This can also be a difficult time for you, especially if this is your first child going to primary school. The house will now feel rather quiet, so don't forget about care for yourself. Maybe speak to other mums or find time for a hobby you always wanted to try.
Number Five: Photography
Take some photographs, make them feel like this is a fantastic opportunity and a positive change! If you can, show them your photographs and talk about your experiences. This is a big step for them, they are going up - don't forget that these moments, so capture them.
I hope these tips help you and your little one prepare for the big day! Just remember to be positive and listen to your children. This is going to be a fun and new experience for them, support is all they need.
Let us celebrate Breastfeeding Week, from two weeks and beyond!
'World Breastfeeding Week is an annual celebration which is held every year from 1 to 7 August in more than 120 countries. According to the 26 August data of WBW website, 540 events have been held worldwide by more than 79 countries with 488 organizations and 406,620 participants for the World Breastfeeding Week 2010.'
'Breastfeeding provides every child with the best possible start in life. It delivers health, nutritional and emotional benefits to both children and mothers. And it forms part of a sustainable food system. But while breastfeeding is a natural process, it is not always easy. Mothers need support – both to get started and to sustain breastfeeding.'
I have listed together some useful resources from NHS and WBW website to provide more information and connect you with other mothers looking for support just like you.
'Got a breastfeeding question?
A handy tip, Sign in to Facebook, or use Amazon Alexa or Google Home to access the Start4Life Breastfeeding Friend chatbot for fast, friendly, trusted NHS advice anytime, day or night.'
If you need any futher support please talk to your Midwives, health visitors and trained local volunteer mothers (peer supporters) are there to help you get breastfeeding off to a good start. They can give you lots of information and support when you need it.
Reach out and someone will be there.
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