Christmas stars found just outside the school art room
At drop-off and pick-up time, school playgrounds are full of younger siblings getting to know the swing of things.
When your first-born starts school the entire family starts school with them. Family life and the school routine merge and the pre-schoolers, toddlers and babies get carried along for the ride. Breakfast is often hurried, afternoon naps are interrupted and Peppa Pig is the replacement for mum's attention at homework time (a necessity and nothing to feel guilty about).
For our family, the start of school has been one of the biggest changes we've experienced. It really rocked me for the first few months; in retrospect I was grieving the loss of spontaneous days and having difficulty accepting the reality of a strict routine. Not one to gracefully embrace change, I was very reluctant to face the truth; school is now a significant part of our lives, for this year and (at least) the next twenty.
It was only yesterday, as Poet and I took Che to his classroom, that I thought about her experience this year. School life is such a novelty for her; it's exciting, loud and intriguing. She has adapted so well to routine - she's embraced the opportunity to sneak into the classroom (more times than I can count) and has enthusiastically participated in every activity that we've been invited to. She has her very own bank book for school banking day and she waits at the bottom of the stairs every afternoon to hug Che.
For a while I felt sorry for her; having to make the journey to and from school twice a day. But that was all my stuff - it never bothered her in the slightest. Whilst I don't want to get carried away I know that when it's her time to start school, she will be ready. Oh so ready.
Come January I will be expanding on the school series; collating thoughts, advice and practical tips for those of you who are about to embark on the journey. If you have any questions I'm more than happy to answer them!
Tell me, do you have a child starting school next year? If so, how are you feeling? If you want a book to help ease the transition, I highly recommend "Starting School".