First Day

It’s your first day of Year 1 today.

You seems so small yet so grown up.

I could tell you were nervous about not knowing the kids in your class, not knowing your new teachers, not knowing what it was going to be like.

But you ate your breakfast quickly and jumped into your freshly-ironed-for-a-change uniform.  You even wore regulation socks and shoes even though you much prefer your purple boots.

We took your photo to remember how big you are today.  How small you really are at six.  You smiled your excited smile and pulled funny faces at the camera.

We took you to school and found your classroom.  But we couldn’t get in so we visited your Prep teachers who are just across the garden.  Mrs W gave you a cuddle and said how much you’ve grown since last year. She told you that Year 1 would be different to Prep. She said you’d love it.

We found a some of your friends from Prep and you were happy that you have a few familiar faces in your new class…. but not your best friend.  She will be in a different class this year, but you’ll still get to play together at lunchtime.

Then Mrs N and Mrs S opened up the door to your new classroom and you went straight inside, not waiting for Mum or Dad to follow.  We had to fight our way in, carrying your huge load of books.

You found your seat and excitedly unpacked your books.  You coloured in the Australian flag by checking the colours on the fake flag tattoo you proudly wore during yesterday’s Australia Day celebrations.

We kissed you goodbye and left you happily colouring in.  You were fine.  My heart was in my throat, even though its your second year at Big School and I should be used to this feeling by now.

It’s your first day of Year 1 today.

and you will love it.

See you at 3pm beautiful girl…. and you can tell me all about your day over a cup of milo and a celebratory lamington.

~~~~~~~

Update:

You loved school today.

You had Mrs N, our old friend from playgroup.

You saw your bestie at lunchtime and you played your old games.

You made a new friend in the new, mixed-up class.

You earned lots of gold stars and were chosen as class leader for the week.

I’m so proud of you.

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9 thoughts on “First Day

  1. greta says:

    Wow, big girl, brave mum!! My heart skips a beat thinking of sending my boy to big school in 2010 (already, I think about it heaps) – half with excitement, half with terrror! LOL – she’ll love it. School is wonderful.

  2. corymbia says:

    This is actually her second year at “Big School” but Prep is a lot more user friendly. For example, in Prep, we could linger in the classroom of a morning, and stay all day if we wanted to. Year 1 is a bit more of a handover procedure … drop your kids at the school gate and pick them up in the playground at 3pm. Having said that, I’ve been asked if I can help out in the classroom if possible, but its more organised than “drop in and stay if you fee like it”.

    But love it – yeah she will.
    And the small boy will also love it in 2010.

  3. greta says:

    Ok, how old is your daughter? The system is completely different in QLD – I get very confused.

    Here, we do preschool until the child is four or five (sometimes going into their fifth year, sometimes their sixth)…

    Then comes primary, starting from kindergarten to year six – then seven through to 12 is high school.

    My son is turning five in april, and was in that borderline age – technically I could have sent him to big school this year, but I decided to wait until next year – some kids are ready earlier than others, but I felt he needed another year in preschool.

    Do kids attend preschool, then prep, then primary, then high school? What ages do they change? When do they learn to read and write and begin more formal lessons?

    I will miss those relaxed mornings hanging out with my son and chopping up fruit. But the idea of him reading thrills us both – such a wonderful world opens up when kids read!

  4. greta says:

    My god, I can see so many grammar errors and typos. My brain is trying to tell me to go to bed, I think! Good luck with all the new things, mama – education is such a blessing, our kids are so fortunate to have access to good schools.

  5. corymbia says:

    The Qld system recently changed…. and its confusing.
    Under the old system, kids began Year 1 the year they turned 6, and continued through primary school until the end of Year 7, and then went to highschool from years 8-12. Many kids also did kindergarten the year they turned 4 and preschool the year they turned 5 – but this was all a private education arrangement.
    Ed Queensland have now added a Prep year onto primary school, which essentially replaces preschool which is great as now all kids have access to State-funded ‘preschool’.
    So Primary school is P-7 and high school is 8-12. We are also doing a private year of ‘Pre-Prep’ which is essentially preschool for kids who will turn 4 by June 30.
    Another confusing factor is the age cut -offs. To start Prep, the child needs to have turned 5 on or before June 30.
    But unlike NSW, Prep kids aren’t taught to read and its more of a play-based curriculum. Of course there are the kids like my daughter who were born in the second half of the year (ie the older kids in the class) that have essentially taught themselves to read because they have been more than ready… and were getting a little bored. Thankfully, Year 1 is where they finally *officially*learn to read.
    Confusing I tell ya. NSW seems to have a much better system!

  6. greta says:

    Heh, that is confusing! It’s tricky, isn’t it? Kids all develop at such differing rates – There’s a big debate in NSW. Some people argue that kids are being pushed into formal reading tuition too early – not so for your clever daughter, who taught herself!

    I’m still tossing up whether or not to send my little one through a steiner school when he gets to kindy – mainly because his cousins are going there, and the three boys are very close.

    They don’t teach kids to read until age seven in Steiner schools – Steiner people believe that although kids are capable of reading before then, it is tiring for them, and they are still too immature to enjoy it.

    I find that very unpalatable. As a kid I took to reading like a duck to water, and then proceeded to devour every book in the junior library. I really don’t know if that’s something I can compromise on. Although studies show that the kids catch up by year four, I worry he will be frustrated.

    My son already knows the basics of reading, and can read simple words like ‘pop’ and ‘mum’.

    I thought it might be nice if *I* got to be the one to support him in his learning. I know he’ll be ready well before seven. Elizabeth homeschools, so maybe I’ll teach him myself.

    I don’t know, there’s still a year to think about it, but it’s a tough decision! Reading between the lines, your girl is in your old class… how lovely! I had a wonderful composite class as a kid, and I’d love it if I could send my boy to it – alas that teacher was so good, he ended up becoming a school principal.

    Weren’t you lucky to get three years?

  7. corymbia says:

    I like some aspects of steiner schools … but I usually have a problem with any teaching method that’s too prescriptive. Every kid is different so you have to engage diverse learners and not be too dogmatic .
    Its really lovely to be able to send my kids to the same school I went to, the same school my Mum taught at. Its not our closest one, but it was the one that “felt right” when I visited. My suggestion to you is to ask for a tour of the local schools and get a feeling for each of them … and hopefully one will just feel right.

  8. leechbabe says:

    Congratulations on the smooth start to grade 1.

    Such confusing systems in different states. I have trouble with the Victorian system having grown up in QLD.

    It does seem very confusing still but better than it used to be I think.

    Cut off for school in Vic is you have to turn 5 by 30th April. Annie was born on the first of May so she misses out by 1 day. In a way I’m glad she is a little older starting but it also meant she was getting very bored at PreSchool last year.

    Then again Chiloe commented at my blog that 5yo seems very late to start school. Children in France (where she is) start school at 3yo, which to me seems very young.

  9. corymbia says:

    I like the addition of Prep into the Qld system. I think it does help the kids.
    Annie sounds like Miss K – one of the older kids in the class. I think its better than being own of the younger kids.
    …and starting school at 3??? that seems waaay to young for me. Having said that, both my kids did 2 days a week at kindergarten/preschool and they started that when they were just over 3,

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