Dear New Parents at School
Yeah! Your babies are now all grown and are in school, that is a huge achievement, one that cannot be taken lightly, you have nurtured your children to the point of getting them ready to be taught by someone else other than you. Good Job. As you saw them off to school your heart swelled with pride, then with anxiety, then with fear then with total abandonment you realised that your emotions should not get the better of you so you filled your mind with other thoughts. Maybe about how you went into labour 3 years ago and after 18 hours of hell they were born, then you realise those are not happy thoughts. You think about Christmas and then you remember it left you broke, thank God you had paid school fee before otherwise you would have postponed a term, whoever said they need to start school at exactly 3 years anyway.
If you are like me you want to set an alarm to remember to pick them from school if they are not using the school transport that is, trust me, first week you will remember then one day you will get a call from the school at 3:34 asking you if you are still picking your child because all the rest left by 3 and you had not left any communication with the teachers that you will be picking your child late.
As your child(ren) are now in school here are some things you will most certainly need to remember.
They will get a new air of confidence, this is because their world has been you, nanny, and the estate children if they get to interact with any, but now they get to meet with other kids, learn new skills, learn new song(and this will be many), new games which will open up their minds and eyes to what they can achieve. Their confidence will be boosted.
I feel like this should have been number 1 don’t worry the rate at which the runny nose is passed on is so high you will get used to it, don’t keep your child at home just because they are sneezing, they might stay home the whole term. This runny nose for some reasons doesn’t stay for 7 days as the old wives tale goes, it will over lap with the next one and the next. Remember to stock up on scotts emulsion and cod liver oil to boost their immunity.
If they were not talking much, they will start talking a lot, if they were talking a lot, they will have new stories, if they knew English, they will learn a few Swahili words, and if they knew Swahili then English will slowly become their new language. They will say they are not baby Lisa, ‘I am a big girl.’ Embrace this change. I have had to keep speaking Swahili to Mugi because they focus on English mostly at school, don’t let your child forget what you have been teaching them for the last years in regards to language.
Everyday you will hear a new name, make a point of asking your child the names of other kids in the class; this makes for conversation when taking them to school. Our class has a whatsapp group that has enabled parents to interact and ask questions; you could suggest that to the class/ head teacher which makes for good conversation because you are able to know the parents of Bianca that your daughter will keep talking about.
‘Miss Kavi said…’, the number of times I heard that statement God knows so prepare for how teacher said, teacher did, teacher is my friend etc. makes their days but mostly yours better when you know that they know, trust and love the teacher.
Make a point of practicing that they learn in school at home, if they learn colours, get crayons and papers and continue teaching them. If they have an activity that they do at school let say swimming, take them swimming every once in a while to see how much they are learning, get books that will help them enhance what they are learning.
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