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When did you start school, what were the arrangements (ie half days at first etc) and how long ago was it?

(34 Posts)
IdrisTheDragon Wed 23-Sep-09 09:44:22

Just feeling interested in other people's experiences, as it seems things may have been different from today when many of us started school.

I started school in 1980 when I was almost 5, as my birthday is in September. Full time from the start, although you had to go home for lunch for the first week. Children born from September to the end of February started in September, the others started in January. I do remember there being a few children from the year above in my class when I started - not sure when they went up into their "proper" class. Probably after Christmas.

Takver Wed 23-Sep-09 10:22:43

I started straight in to full days at 'rising 5' (a month short of my 5th birthday) in September 1974. I'd been going to nursery school part time since age 3.
I don't remember much about any of it apart from being very impressed by all the toys in the 'big school' playground and getting to learn the recorder

Seeline Wed 23-Sep-09 10:25:22

I started school in 1973 - after Easter. I was 5 at the beginning of April. There were intakes in September, January and April, each into a new class. We joined together into three new classes the folowing September. I went home for lunch in the infants - we lived about 3 minutes away! I had never visited the school before starting, didn't know my teacher, and maybe one or two children in my class. My mother dropped me in the play ground, and wasn't even allowed to stay to see us go into school. I settled very quickly.

CMOTdibbler Wed 23-Sep-09 10:29:55

I started in 1977, in the September (born October) in a school that had 3 intakes a year. Full time from the start, and you either went home for lunch or had school dinners.

I'd been to nursery and playgroup before, and had spent a lot of time at the school as my mum taught there, and would take me with her if she was doing supply.

When I was at school I played in the hall or mums classroom before and after school.

nymphadora Wed 23-Sep-09 10:32:54

1983- started in order of birthday (over a couple of weeks)but IIRC straight into full days

wannaBe Wed 23-Sep-09 10:37:24

started in 1979. Was a boarding school (for the visually impaired), was put on a coach which took all children from this area, went on the monday and that was it - didn't come home till Friday.

scarletlilybug Wed 23-Sep-09 10:38:18

I must be quite old then.
Started in September 1972, aged 4.5. Straight into full days, along with the rest of my year group. I seem to remember one or two children going home for lunch - but it wasn't the norm.

wannaBe Wed 23-Sep-09 10:39:51

And if ever my ds complains about going to school (which isn't often tbh) I tell him he should be grateful he's not at boarding school - and that when I was little I never went home to my own house/own toys after school and only saw my mummy and daddy at weekends, and then during the holidays when I was eleven and they moved away.

amtooyoungforthis Wed 23-Sep-09 10:40:56

Started in 1971, 2 weeks after 4th birthday, full days

My children started 1994, 1995 - both 4.5, 2 weeks half days then straight in, 1997 - 4.1 half days till xmas, 1995 - 4.4, half days until first half term

gomez Wed 23-Sep-09 10:46:24

1976 - started Easter after turning 5 in January, straight into full days.

DD1 August 2005 DD2 August 2009 both staright into full days. DD1 was first year of a return to this in our area. Both have coped absolutley fine - DD1 had come from fullish days in Nursery, DD2 from school nursery 9.00 - 11.300. Both were 5 on starting (may/June birthdays) however.

RustyBear Wed 23-Sep-09 10:50:13

I started in September 1961, a month after my fifth birthday - but I can't remember whether everyone started in September (in which case some of them would have been nearly 6) or the term after their 5th birthday It was full days straight away - I got a bit upset, so my mum made me the original Rusty Bear to take in my pocket for comfort!

ThingOne Wed 23-Sep-09 10:58:32

Started in Sept 1971, rising five. We were full time from the word go, although there were only 12-15 in the class the first term.

I settled very quickly and well but some children did not.

sophiaverloren Wed 23-Sep-09 11:02:23

January 1976, a few weeks before my 5th birthday. I was assigned a "big girl" to look after me for the first few days (a September starter). Full days, don't recall having been to the school before then, although it was next to the church hall and I knew it from the outside.
When I helped out at primary schools in 1988 for a bit, the system was that the Aspril starters spent a second term in reception class so only went up in January to second year (as it then was). I have no idea if that happened when I was there as I was in the term entry which it didn't affect !
DS has just started school at 4.2, full days and is (fingers crossed) perfectly happy. Of course, I was picked up at 3.15 every day and taken home (I have no recollection of this - but given my mum looked after my younger bro at the time, it must have been - this changed when he went to school) and DS has to go into childcare until 6, I'm thinking I had it much easier!

Khara Wed 23-Sep-09 11:16:32

September 1974. I was 4, 5 in the November. I can't remember much about it, but according to my mum we went full days, but had to come home for our lunch for the first few weeks - which was daft because by the time we'd walked home & back (20 min walk each way) there was little time for lunch and I was even more tired! There would have been a January intake too, so presumably the class was quite small at first.

FimboFortuna Wed 23-Sep-09 11:21:32

I started at 4.5 in 1972. Everyone went home for lunch, which involved a bus there and back again! There was no such thing as a packed lunch in those days. The building was very old though and we had outside toilets, which were freezing.

norksinmywaistband Wed 23-Sep-09 11:27:31

I started in sept 1977 just before I turned 5
Full days straight off, was also a Jan intake.
School dinners or home for lunch only option

EccentricaGallumbits Wed 23-Sep-09 11:35:42

1977 started nursery class in school at just 3 (August birthday) half days. Reception, full days, at just 4.

DD1 started in january before her 5th bithday in april. DD2 started in september at 4.5 (birthday in March) half days for 2 weeks then full time.

IdrisTheDragon Wed 23-Sep-09 12:27:28

Thank you everyone smile

As I thought there were people starting at not much older than 4 and being there full time a while ago, so it isn't a new thing.

I think formalised nursery class attached to a school is newer - I went to playschool up until going to school and think this was the usual thing to do.

EccentricaGallumbits Wed 23-Sep-09 12:31:29

and t was welsh and i only spoke english.
and i remember being told off for taking my shoes off and going to sleep under the table.
god knows what my mother was thinking. i suspect PND after birth of younger sibling clouded her judgement.

elvislives Wed 23-Sep-09 12:43:45

I started school in 1968 as a 'rising 5'. There were 3 intakes, September, January and Easter and you started at the beginning of the term in which you turned 5. It was full days from the off, 9 till 4 (although I must have gone home for lunch- I don't remember), and playgroups were quite a new thing so I would only have gone 2-3 mornings a week.

There was no induction or looking round the school and mums didn't stay. Just taken into the school hall on the first morning and left. I was called to "look after" my brother when he started 2 years later as he was upset at being separated from his mum grin

My own children started in September at 4.5 (DD) and almost 5 (3 x DS) and went for full days from the off. They had storytime at school one afternoon a week the term before they started to get them used to the school and the teachers.

RustyBear Wed 23-Sep-09 13:40:49

Fimbo - our school had outside toilets but they were replaced with new ones the summer before I started. My brother remembers having to break the ice in the toilets - they used the coal hammer, which the oldest children (Year 6 now) also used to break up lumps of coal before laying & lighting the open fires. They also had to make a fire in the headmaster's house, which was just across the road!

FimboFortuna Wed 23-Sep-09 13:46:19

Ooh Rusty, it still makes me shiver thinking about it, especially as you weren't allowed to wear your coat. Thankfully my parents moved me away to a school with an indoor toilet in primary 3 and where you stayed for school lunch or went home. I stayed for school dinners then. My old school was eventually demolished and an old peoples home built on the site.

I forgot to say, I started full-time straightaway.

happywomble Wed 23-Sep-09 13:48:09

Don't start on outside loos...ours had spiders in them and we had that horrid hard paper instead of loo roll.

Hulababy Wed 23-Sep-09 13:50:36

I started school 32 years ago. I was 4y6m. Apparently I was more than ready to go and was fine going straight into school full time.

My brother started school 30.5 years ago as a January starter, at 4y6m. I don't think he did half days. I know my mum talks about how tired he was and once fell asleep at the table eating his dinner.

My sister started school 23y ago, as a January starter, aged 4y5m. Infact she was so ready to start school (would have been g&t these days if it had existed) my mum, with the GP/HV/nursery's backing, tried to appeal for her to start in the previous September but were unable. Again, I don't remember half days.

ZZZenAgain Wed 23-Sep-09 13:51:13

started school at 5 (convent school in Africa, was just half days, finished at lunch-time)

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