I left school on break-up day last term at 12:00 p.m. and at 12:10 I was on my way to The Kruger National Park. After a wonderful week there with my husband and 4 grandchildren, we returned on Holy Thursday and I had the Easter Weekend to prepare myself for the new term. It was good to have those four days to sleep in a bit after a week of the necessary early rising for good game viewing:-)
My princesses were bright and eager on the first day and before we knew it we were into the full swing of the new term. The weather is still warm although the early mornings are darker and somewhat chillier now. Our first day started with Assembly taken by our headmaster. He spoke about the importance of being kind to each other and showed a lovely video of how one act of kindness led to another and came full circle when the person who helped a hurt child had an act of kindness shown to him too. We sang a song about ‘filling each other’s buckets’ and the message really went home to the little people. A great way to start the term and my girls have continued to refer to ‘filling buckets’ ever since.
Now that the little girls are in their second term and quite adjusted to big school, I have had no more separation anxiety. They were all pleased to be back and have thrown themselves right into the school routine. I was a little worried about beginning wide-lined books after only having used unlined books last term but they have surprised me. Handwriting is a silent lesson, I have to remind them – listen and look and you will get it right – And they do! I am so proud of their beautiful handwriting. Every day they write the date and their names and surnames, do a pattern and learn the correct way of writing a new letter. Imagine all the concentration that takes when you’ve only just begun. Where do I start the letter? Does it touch the top and bottom line? Some small letters are actually quite tall – oh dear is it a whole space or only half? At the same time I have to remember how to spell both my first name and surname and keep it all straight and neat! Then there’s reading and sentence writing too! What a lot I am expected to do!
Another first for these little ones will be to present an Assembly. At my school each grade is responsible for an item in Assembly. We are busy preparing our classes for their very first one and the theme will be Blast off to Big School. We’ve worked and worked on getting them to say rhymes and sentences. And next Tuesday will be their big day. They are so excited – more about this next week.
Today we had what we call a Funscape. This is kind of like a day off from regular school work. In the second term the whole grade does a Funscape together – it can take the form of an outing or some sort of activity at school. We decided to have four stations led by each class teacher. We had indoor games, outdoor games, making musical instruments and making masks. I was responsible for making masks. Each class had three quarters of an hour at each station and there was a half an hour break after the second session. And wow did we have fun. They used a template to trace their masks, cut them out and then decorated them with feathers and hearts and rhinestones of all shapes. There was glitter glue and they could also draw designs on them if so desired. I thought they’d be noisy and messy – but they were absorbed and quiet – they shared the resources beautifully and we had no behaviour problems at all. Yes there was a mess but we covered the tables with black plastic bags and it was all cleared up in a jiffy. I had my own class last and we ended with a packet of chips and a story and they went off home with their masks and the musical instruments – a shaker made with a paper plate.
So yes the term has started off with lots of activity – a good blend of hard work and fun. Winter sports have begun and the little ones are throwing themselves into learning these wonderful new skills. Its a long day for small girls but they seem to be thriving on it.