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How do I sell school to my ds?!

(22 Posts)
orangekitkat Thu 09-Dec-10 09:23:09

my one and only is starting school in January. He's had a couple of visits which went down reasonably well but I can't say he loved it! We've talked a lot about school and been very positive about it....
However, we haven't really gone into the specifics yet about how the day to day stuff is going to massively change. At the moment he spends a couple of days at nursery, a couple of days at home with me and a day with my mum. I have a feeling he thinks school is in addition to all this rather than instead of!
I feel a bit mean just coming out with it "right 1 more week at nursery, no more granny days, no more days at home with mum" although I'm tempted, get it all out there and deal with the potential tears.
Can anyone share their experience and offer any 'sales' techniques?!
p.s well aware that this is a lot about my emotions too! sad

MarineIguana Thu 09-Dec-10 09:31:17

My DS has struggled a bit with starting school, but the things that encourage him most are learning to read and do maths so that he can become a scientist (so use whatever your DS wants to be when he grows up), and we tell him about all the exciting things he'll get to do like science experiments, trips, drama etc. He also likes after-school club as it's more like nursery - at the moment it's only 1 day a week but that has really helped.

To be positive, tell him about what school is for and what happens there. I've been amazed at how much fun they have and how fast-moving it all is - things have moved on since we were at school.

Can you arrange granny days for weekends/holidays? When there's a big change it's good to keep some continuity where you can.

PaisleyLeaf Thu 09-Dec-10 10:12:55

Is there somewhere nice near school. Like, "Oh it's good you'll be by (^whatever-it-is^) we can go and play in that park/feed the ducks when I come and get you".
"Granny's coming to pick you up with me on -day"
and maybe letting him know how pleased you are with him after he's done some school and giving him a little treat - anything: make a cake, a dvd, take a comic when you pick him up.

Like Marine says, being positive about it all - all the activities and toys etc he's got access to etc.

TBH chances are once he's done a week or so, it might dawn on him just how 'ongoing' the whole school thing is going to be and he might be unhappy to go in for a bit. But with good TAs/teacher all onboard, who are well practiced at coaxing them in and rewards, it'll pass.

There are some little books out there, this one is quite sweet. And that 'Absolutely too small for school one of Charlie and Lola's.

Does he enjoy nursery?

orangekitkat Thu 09-Dec-10 10:26:09

Thank you, good advice! He does enjoy nursery, lots! Think that's why I'm a bit worried. He likes Charlie and Lola so I'll see if I can get that book for him. He's never expressed a wish to be anything when he grows up! He's a live in the moment kinda guy!

ImeldaM Thu 09-Dec-10 11:16:35

If possible, get him watching 'Timothy goes to school' on tinypop (freesat). That helps with my DS when he being negative about school.

smee Thu 09-Dec-10 13:12:22

I wouldn't worry too much, as whatever you do it will be a big transition. Yes be positive now, but if when he starts he finds it hard, then I really think it's okay to admit to him that that's normal. I told my son that everyone he knows has gone/ goes to school - so all adults and all older kids that he looks up to and somehow that seemed to help as it made him realise it's not optional, and to think well if they can do it, so can I. My son has never hated school, but the first year was a bit hit and miss - if he could have gone just two or three days a week it would have been fine, but five full days was too much all at once. You never know though, your son might really enjoy it. Hope he does. smile

orangekitkat Thu 09-Dec-10 21:25:24

Thank you smee. I have kindly friends and relatives brushing over my worries saying 'he'll be fine' but good to hear something realistic. I'm sure in the long run 'he'll be fine' but from my grown up perspective it feels like such a massive change for him! Just wanna do the right thing and prepare him best I can.

RoadArt Thu 09-Dec-10 21:32:41

When it gets closer (a few days before) start talking about what might be expected
ie, they will sit on the carpet and take the register so that they know who is in the class on the day.

They will read books, listen to stories, paint, draw, might play in sand, play with toys, build things from anything and everything.
they will start to learn about letters and numbers, counting, etc.
There will be times they have to sit quietly and listen to the teacher and not talk
They will have a routine, breaks, lunch, etc. times to drink water, eat food.

Emphasise its fun, makes new friends and he will enjoy it.

Most importantly is ensuring your child can put clothes on and off, and quickly. Hang a coat up. Put a coat/hat/gloves on and fasten coats.

Ensure shoes are easy to take on and off.

Know how to open lunchboxes and their contents etc.

These are the things that can cause more stress than the actual day.

Talkinpeace Thu 09-Dec-10 21:41:01

Your question is your answer

you are dreading losing him
so he his dreading being away from you
turn it around
which household chores does he hate?
point out that you will do those now he's at school not while he's home
and you'll do the boring things while he's having fun

my kids love to come home to a clean tidy house with laundry done and fridge full
they also love that I work and earn money while they are busy

find the positives - if you are with his dad, get him to spend a WHOLE DAY in an office
WOW it's boring.

school is 6 hours a day, 30 weeks a year of no tidying under the bed. ENJOY

RoadArt Thu 09-Dec-10 21:54:32


Love it

Yes, I dreaded first day, but in reality I got some me time back, and the kids were so so happy at school, much more so than I ever expected.

I suppose I was remembering my school days with dread.

Talkinpeace Thu 09-Dec-10 21:59:00


orangekitkat Fri 10-Dec-10 08:21:07

Thank u! Very much. Just going to be a different kind of balance for him.

Bucharest Fri 10-Dec-10 08:23:13

School in the UK at least is an extension of nursery for the first bit so I really wouldn't worry.

Try being here where suddenly they are thrown into 3-4 hrs of homework every night!

Bet he'll love it!

(I cried on dd's first day btw) (she didn't)

RoadArt Fri 10-Dec-10 21:31:40

Just make sure you dont visibly get upset, because he will and then he fill find settling in very hard. If he sees you arehappy, he will be to.

It will be fine - honest, and then you look back and wonder why you were ever worried.


sarahfreck Sat 11-Dec-10 20:44:40

Can you talk about how little boys and babies go to nursery but big boys go to school and that he is getting big enough to go to school now. Children often like stuff that implies they are bigger/older.
Can you get a playdate with a child already at the school, either in reception already or one with older siblings at the school so you can talk about x being a big boy/girl and going to school and how he is big enough to go too. Can you still arrange a "going to granny's for tea" day to help with that transition?

Talkinpeace Sat 11-Dec-10 23:04:31

but they also like to not grow up sometimes
if you go down that route you may get them wanting to have "baby" days and not go in.

The whole "selling" it has to be on the things the child will gain by going to school
- access to more toys
- access to new friends
- lots of things to tell mummy at the end of the day
- not having to stay out of the way while chores are being done
- oh yes, and a bit of learning over and above what you do with them
remember that school is only 6 hours a day 30 weeks a year

thenightsky Sat 11-Dec-10 23:09:08

I sold it it my two by promising them they could leave at 16 instead of 18 if they really hated it that much grin

Talkinpeace Sun 12-Dec-10 13:31:53

I can't do that. DD wants to be a vet and DS a design engineer. Am already saving hard for their Uni fees.

thenightsky Sun 12-Dec-10 13:41:33

Yes you can!

Mine have both gone to uni.

onimolap Sun 12-Dec-10 13:46:52

Also ask at the nursery - they will have helped lots of LOs to move on to big school. It'll be useful to know what (if anything) they do anyhow to prepare for the transition and to make sure your attitude and theirs reinforce each other.

nzshar Mon 13-Dec-10 00:04:28

Right the term before ds started school we started having school lunches (in ds' case lunchbox things) We hyped up that friends he would be making the things he will be playing with ( still a lot of playing in reception) the great friends he will make and how we will do great things after school and he can tell me all about his day.
We have never had a day where he hasn't wanted to go to school and he is in year 2 now. Well thats a lie one day when he knew his father and me were off to London for an appointment he wanted to come

princessparty Tue 14-Dec-10 16:37:59

I wouldn't mention it until a few days before.No point having him stressing about it.

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