As the summer sun begins to wane, the excitement of a new school year is on the horizon. The return to school brings with it a sense of normalcy, routine, and a plethora of benefits that extend beyond the classroom. In the United Kingdom, the annual ritual of kids going back to school is a time that holds a variety of perks for both parents and children alike.
**1. ** Structured Routine:
After the long summer break, children thrive on structure and routine. Going back to school provides them with a predictable schedule that helps in setting their biological clock right. A structured routine aids in better time management, ensuring kids get enough sleep, eat healthy meals, and engage in extracurricular activities effectively.
**2. ** Social Interaction:
School is not just a place for learning; it's a hub for social interaction. After weeks of the inevitable bad weather and hours indoors, returning to school means reuniting with friends, making new acquaintances, and engaging in face-to-face conversations. Social interactions at school contribute significantly to a child's emotional and social development.
**3. ** Learning Opportunities:
Of course. education is at the heart of school, and the classroom provides an environment conducive to learning. Kids have access to teachers who are trained to impart knowledge effectively. From science experiments to art projects, school is a treasure trove of hands-on learning experiences that cannot be replicated at home.
**4. ** Skill Development:
Beyond academic subjects, school is a place where kids learn essential life skills. Teamwork, communication, problem-solving, and time management are all skills that are honed through interactions with peers and participation in group activities.
**5. ** Extracurricular Activities:
Schools offer a wide array of extracurricular activities, from sports to clubs and arts programs. These activities enable children to explore their interests and passions outside the classroom. Whether it's joining the football team, participating in a choir, or learning to play a musical instrument, these activities add depth to a child's overall development.
**6. ** Sense of Normalcy:
The return to school signifies a return to a sense of normalcy. A familiar routine, friendships, and the buzz of a school environment all contribute to a feeling of stability and reassurance for both kids and parents.
**7. ** Parental Relief:
The summer break often poses a challenge for working parents in terms of childcare arrangements. With kids back in school, parents regain the ability to focus on their professional commitments without worrying about entertaining and supervising their children throughout the day.
**8. ** Physical Activity:
Schools encourage physical activity through PE classes, outdoor play, and sports activities. These opportunities for movement and exercise are crucial for a child's physical health and overall well-being.
**9. ** Mental Stimulation:
The school environment stimulates a child's mind through exposure to new ideas, subjects, and challenges. Engaging in classroom discussions, reading assignments, and critical thinking exercises keeps their cognitive skills sharp and their curiosity alive.
**10. ** Sense of Achievement:
School provides a platform for children to achieve milestones, both big and small. From spelling tests to performing in a school play, these accomplishments boost a child's self-esteem and help them build a sense of competence and confidence.
In conclusion, the return to school offers a multitude of perks that extend beyond textbooks and classrooms. From structured routines and social interactions to skill development and a sense of normalcy, the benefits of kids going back to school are far-reaching. As parents prepare their children for another year of learning and growth, they can rest assured that the school environment holds the key to the holistic development of their young ones.
Fear not, we have educational gifts for little ones including musical instruments and reading and puppet gift sets designed to engage, entertain and educate even the youngest minds.
As much as living away from home is an adventure, it's important to cover all bases and make the transition run as smoothly as possible for both the brainbox and mum and dad.
We've done the research and created the list so you don't have to.
A proposal and engagement is one of the most exciting times in a person’s life. They’re making a commitment to be with and care for someone else for as long as they live.
But finding the right gift for the happy couple can be a tricky thing to do. Not with Ooh!
I’ve recently started tracking my habits, and, in a nutshell, it ain’t good.
On a typical day, I wake up when the baby shouts for me, I get his milk and make a brew (if he lets me put him down), I sort breakfast, get him changed and play for the rest of the morning. While he naps, I clean the kitchen, prep lunch and answer emails. When the baby wakes up again, we have lunch, go to the park or to one of his classes, take the dog for a walk, make tea, bath and then bed. Once he’s down, I clean up, get some work done while watching tv in the background, do my skin care and get to bed early.
Now don’t get me wrong, I have a ton of support. My partner does his fair share and my family are really helpful when the cracks start to show and I need some time to myself. But even me, who feels very supported, struggles to take time for myself. Imagine what other people have to go through?!
The narrative around health and wellbeing has changed slightly over the years, moving from external health and fitness to more about mental wellbeing. A big part of that conversation has been around meeting needs for yourself.
Meeting needs, put simply, is about being aware of what you need at that moment and working it into your day. This involves listening to yourself and tuning into your thoughts and feelings in a non judgmental way.
Are you feeling strained and about to snap? What you need is a release, so go and take a kickboxing class or invite your friends to karaoke! Feeling bored or stuck in a rut? You need to switch up your routine and plan a day trip! Get the idea?
Meeting your needs isn’t always doing self care things, though. A lot of the time when I’m feeling anxious, while a bath and a glass of wine helps in the moment, the anxiety doesn’t stay away. I’ve started journaling recently, which gives me an understanding of the causes of my negative feelings, and this way I can tackle them!
One of the ways I deal with the anxious feelings around meeting my needs is with an idea called ‘pleasure practise’.
Let’s say, for example, that you’re feeling a bit itchy scratchy, and you can’t settle on a particular task. You sit down and write about this feeling, and you realise that it’s because the house is untidy, and it’s making you feel out of sorts. Problem is: you haaaaaaate tidying!
This is where pleasure practise comes in. Do you remember the scene in Mary Poppins where they tidy the nursery? I’m not saying pleasure practise will magically tidy the toys away like ol’ MP can, but what it does is coincide what you find fun with what you, well, don’t find fun. So blast some music, pop your party clothes on and dance around with the hoover!
Now I know where my time is being spent, I can see where I’m not meeting my needs, and find pleasure in the admin! This week I’m having something called a ‘money date’. Think fluffy socks, glass (bottle) of wine, luxurious chocolates, and a loooooot of spreadsheets. Do I like looking at my finances? Absolutely not, but it’s what I need. A bath also helps it feel a bit nicer too.
What needs are you not meeting right now? How can you fulfil those needs and make them fun too?
Author - Hannah Selby-Hughes