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to ask if you think your children need so much holiday

(136 Posts)
manicinsomniac Wed 22-Jul-15 21:15:56

I'm coming at this as a teacher who loves every second of my holidays by the way so definitely not teacher bashing. It's a major perk of my job and I'd be devastated to lose it.


We always say the holidays are for the children, not the teachers and the children really need it because they're exhausted.

Do you think that's true?

We have extended days and Saturday school and my children were knackered for the first few days and had lots of down time. But now, a week and a half into our (crazily long 7.5 week holiday!) they're fully refreshed and would happily go back tomorrow if asked.

They really do not need 13+ weeks of down time a year. All their extra curriculars are term time only so I'm racing them about to open dance classes, free summer events, into London, sending them out to play for hours to get rid of energy. They're certainly not acting like poor, exhausted little beings. In a week or so they're even going to have to start doing some holiday work with me, I think.

We love having the holidays because we tend to go travelling (off to America for all of August this year) so I'm certainly not saying I want them gone.

Just questioning whether, actually, 2 weeks off for each holiday plus half terms (so 9 weeks holiday in total) would be perfectly sufficient and make life easier for a lot of people?

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Wed 22-Jul-15 21:17:08

Yes I agree.

My DD has holiday playscheme for 4 weeks in the summer and is completely relaxed and full of energy.

voluptuagoodshag Wed 22-Jul-15 21:18:49

I don't think the summer holidays need to be quite so long. 4 weeks would suffice. I'd prefer it more evenly spread over the year.

FurtherSupport Wed 22-Jul-15 21:19:07

I think there's so much to be learned over the long summer holiday though - if we allow our DC to be a bit bored and are able/willing to give them a bit of freedom.

TeacherKS1 Wed 22-Jul-15 21:19:42

I agree to some extent. My children are 9,7 and 4 and the elder two are really tired. They need time off but I think 2 or 3 weeks would be enough. I'm a teacher so childcare isn't an issue, but my DH won't be around at all so it's going to be a long 6 weeks for me.

AlpacaMyBags Wed 22-Jul-15 21:20:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Luckyfellow Wed 22-Jul-15 21:21:19

I think they need it. Best part of childhood. They can work in 9-5 jobs 48 weeks a year in a decade of so. Now they can have long summer holidays and enjoy being kids. Mine are off for 9 weeks (Northern Ireland).

meglet Wed 22-Jul-15 21:22:15

no. A 4 week summer break would do us.

I'd like a couple of days tagged onto the Oct and Feb half terms though.

iwanttogotothechaletschool Wed 22-Jul-15 21:24:30


I am in Scotland so we are now in week 3 of the holidays and ds is definitely refreshed to the point of being bored. Yes he was tired at the end of term and definitely needed the first couple of weeks to recharge but he could easily go back now and not feel hard done by. The fact that the weather here has been so awful is not helping either!

futureme Wed 22-Jul-15 21:24:43

I wish mine had more holiday. Theres just so much to do and visit and I want them to have down time as well.... I want to camp for a bit, go to london, stay with friends, and meet up with school friends and have play dates.. ..

Mine arent in private though and swimming and another sport go through the summer. Id love the chance ti try new sportsand activities..,

Really schiol gets in the way n of a broader education sometimes..

OftheTwilighttheDarkness Wed 22-Jul-15 21:25:26

I loved the 6 week holiday when I was at school and I would hate to see my kids deprived of it.

AChickenCalledKorma Wed 22-Jul-15 21:25:28

I think my children have needed them more as they get older - particularly DD1 who has just finished Year 8. Their term time schedule is pretty intense and the long summer does give them time to relax properly, do some projects that are just because they want to and not for some sort of assessment and learn to be kids again. It's a joy to see them messing around on a campsite not worrying about homework, assessments and intense teen/pre-teen friendship issues.

But yes, they are generally expressing a desire to get back into routine after about 5 weeks so the US system sounds terrifying!

eatyouwithaspoon Wed 22-Jul-15 21:25:32

I think they need it and even if they dont they will probably be working once they have left education till their 70's so why not enjoy being young

Iammad Wed 22-Jul-15 21:25:56

I do think the summer holidays are rather long, although not as long as in some countries though.
Imo I think shorter terms and the holidays spread out more would be better.
I know my children get quite tiered after a long 6 weeks sometimes 7 weeks, and that does effect their behaviour and the ability to concentrate on school work.

OhYouBadBadKitten Wed 22-Jul-15 21:26:01

Not quite long enough here at 6 weeks and some of the schools dont even quite have 6 weeks.

two weeks family holiday away, a week away doing a summer camp and a bit less than three weeks to mooch about, meet up with friends, do one of her hobbies a bit more and do holiday homework.

It doesnt seem very much time just to be a teen.

usualsuspect333 Wed 22-Jul-15 21:26:41

I think children need the holidays to just be.

Not sure why people think a childs life should be all about school.

Sighing Wed 22-Jul-15 21:27:19

Perhaps shift all the breaks to being around 2 or 3 weeks (half terms too). Then not one big holiday but still the chance to rest?

HairyMaclary Wed 22-Jul-15 21:27:46

Mine are 8 and 10 and I find they need a full two weeks to recover and then a proper holiday. I feel they don't actully get back to 'full strength' during any other holiday except the summer one.

If we had to though I'd go down to 5 in the summer but swap it for two weeks in October. However this last half term, which ended today for us, has been a real killer. I'm dragging exhausted children though the school day - I also teach- but until this week we have been on full timetable, no videos here!

FurtherSupport Wed 22-Jul-15 21:29:13

"Really schiol gets in the way n of a broader education sometimes.."

That's how I feel futureme. The long holiday provides so many opportunities, but of course that's only the case if at least one parent can be around too.

I wish (I) people would be a bit braver and allow younger children to be a bit feral. So much to be learned from the adventures they'd have. I didn't do it when mine were young, more for fear of being judged by others than fear of the risks involved.

manicinsomniac Wed 22-Jul-15 21:29:57

12 weeks for the US - wow! I didn't know that, that's insane. How many weeks are the other holidays?

Yeah, I guess there's a difference between needing it physically/mentally and needing it in order to be a child and have fun.

We certainly have fun. Just don't feel it's necessary (but still want it!)

I suppose the other consideration is that there are many children who don't get the chance to have fun or get a broader education and who have to sit around in cramped flats all summer without even getting enough to eat. Or the middle ground of children whose parents both have to keep working so, while perfectly well looked after, the children don't really get any added stimulation from having 6 weeks off.

Maybe the length is a good thing if parents are a) able and b) willing to make them a good thing. But otherwise, not.

iwanttogotothechaletschool Wed 22-Jul-15 21:30:20

Just to add that from the point of view of what children need as regards holidays I think they could do with more time at Christmas, I feel the Christmas break is such a busy time that they don't get much down time before they are back. Obviously from a working parent/ childcare point of view I would find it a nightmare.

DeeWe Wed 22-Jul-15 21:30:29

Mine do.

And I know I did too. I used to often spend the first few days to a week ill of holidays.

I think they'd be better with more holidays not less.

Methe Wed 22-Jul-15 21:31:09

Mine are 6 and 10 and they absolutely need a decent long break several times a year. It will take them a week to come back down to earth during the summer holidays. They are so micromanaged during their school life that it does them good to be able to relax and think for themselves. They are so much nicer at the end of the holiday than they are at the beginning.

I would hate to only have 2 weeks off in the summer. Children need to relax and be children and that takes more than two weeks!

Teachers could work all year round like all the other stressful jobs but I don't hold their long holidays against them. Most of the teacher haters are just jealous. You want 6 weeks off in the summer and every bank holiday, Easter and Christmas etc be a teacher.. Don't be a police officer or nurse and then whinge bout the hours.

usualsuspect333 Wed 22-Jul-15 21:31:23

There's so much more to being a child than going to school.

cuntycowfacemonkey Wed 22-Jul-15 21:32:11

I would like a longer christmas holiday. It's always such a long and busy term and the the christmas holidays themselves are so busy I think 3 week would be nice to give them a chance to wind down, so wouldn't be unhappy to see a week knocked of the summer for that

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