Things I’ve Learned After A Week Of Being A School Mum

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My daughter has now been a pupil at primary school for a week. I have been a school mum for a week. It’s been exciting, it’s been nerve-wracking, it’s been exhausting and it has felt like a month! Here are the things I’ve learnt in that week…

  1. I’ll never tire of saying “I’m doing the school run” or “I’ll do that after the school run” – it makes me feel like a proper parent, in the same way you felt when you first move out of home and you feel really grown up making beans on toast for yourself (“yeah, I don’t need a MUM to cook for me, I’ve totally got this”)
  2. Navigating the whole starting-school process is emotionally exhausting. I completely underestimated how tough it would be to get my head around getting my child to the school ON TIME every morning (“Please stop walking so slowly!”) and keeping an eye on the clock to pick her up at the right time. Knowing where to drop her off, where to collect her. Does she need her PE kit today? Have I labelled everything? Where does she go for after school Street Jazz class? What’s the name of her classroom assistant again? *head spins and falls off*
  3. Fitting work in around the school day is tricky. Call that a full day? 3.15pm is usually when I’m just getting going on a day’s work, after a few hours of procrastinating and email admin. But now it’s the time I have to down tools and head to school to collect my child. Add to that the fact that my school-mum-addled brain made me totally forget about a meeting one morning until the person I was meeting messaged me to ask where I was, and it’s safe to say I’m not cracking this balancing act quite yet.
  4. When you have a child who’s tired from a week of school and getting their head around their new routine, Netflix is your friend. The four-year-old spent around three solid hours watching Power Rangers one afternoon and I felt zero-guilt. She needed to zone out, I needed the peace. Win, win. The baking/drawing/reading can wait for another day.
  5. Checking your child’s school bag every day is the key to knowing what’s going on. The four-year-old has been at school now for 7 days and on 6 of those days, there has been a letter or note or form in her bag for me to read and act upon. Usually, they require me to act upon it by the following day, meaning I need to be ALL OVER THIS SHIZ every night.
  6. Trying to get your child to tell you what they did at school that day is like getting blood from a stone. Me: “What did you do today?” Her: “I can’t remember.” Me: “Did you play with anything or play with any new friends?” Her: “No” Me: “Did you draw anything?” Her: “Not today”
  7. My washing machine thinks we have a newborn baby again. Our Bosch is still getting over the battering it got five years ago when it was used approximately five times a day with newborn vests, baby grows, muslins and scratch mitts. While we’re not quite doing five loads of laundry a day now, it’s being used a heck of a lot more as we wash grubby school uniforms again and again (Note to self: next year, buy five of everything and do the washing at the weekend.)
  8. School is really good for my social life. Granted, the most obvious benefit to school is that my child is getting an education, but a totally unexpected perk is how many awesome local mums and dads I’m now mates with. We’ve had invitations to prosecco-fuelled BBQs, coffee and cake at the local cafe, and lots of chatting at the school gate. It’s like Fresher’s Week without the 20p blue shots and Pulp Fiction posters.

I suspect that this is only the start of my school mum education and I’ve got a lot more to learn. But as long as the prosecco-fuelled social events continue, I think I’ll survive. What have you learned as a school mum?

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25 Comments

  1. September 12, 2015 / 9:46 am

    Great post. Number 3 is spot on! The school day goes so quickly- I never get anything done. Added to that I still have a part timer so my day is really broken up.

    The parent social life sounds great at your school! I think I need to organise some prosecco nights! 🙂

    x
    Claire recently posted…If You Go Down to The Woods today…. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  2. September 12, 2015 / 11:02 am

    It sounds like you have had a great start….Hard work but a lot of fun!
    My girl is 8 & I still struggle to to find out what she has been up to at school. lol
    Kim Carberry recently posted…Fun with The Twits – #RoaldDahlDay. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  3. September 12, 2015 / 11:31 am

    Trust me – you’ll tire of number one xxx

  4. September 12, 2015 / 1:25 pm

    Started off with 3 jumpers. By the end of week 1 I’d bought 2 more. Enough said.

    Also finding the whole ‘getting up early and getting in on time’ thing a learning curve. I was warned that the kids would be knackered and irritable in the first weeks after starting school, but no one warned me I’d be shattered myself!
    Chloe recently posted…Starting School (and Preschool) | A few things I Want to Remember. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  5. Amy
    September 13, 2015 / 9:10 am

    Also, what do we do on that 20 minute walk back from the school run? I’m completely lost; I’m not used to free time.
    Sorry – what do we do whilst also balancing a heavier-than-it-should-be-and-too-small-for-me-to-ride scooter on our shoulder?

  6. September 13, 2015 / 10:48 am

    Well I thought I’d cracked the whole school routine with already having one child in school but this last week has been a learning curve all over again with my eldest going into year 2 and my youngest starting reception! Navigating a system that works for 2 small people is challenging! Things I’ve had to tackle include point blank refusal to eat any breakfast, one child fully dressed and the other refusing to remove pj’s, having to take 2 children to 2 different classrooms at the very same time whilst one child is in tears, having to be “on it” as soon as they get in through the front door with getting things straight into the wash, clearing up lunchboxes and rounding up random bits of school uniform (they both seem to strip off as soon as they get in!) but also, and sadly, having to deal with the mammoth amount if homework my 6 year old got on Friday to be in on Tuesday! First weekend off after a full week in surely deserves a bit of a lighter homework folder? Doesn’t the school run make your head spin!
    Emma in Bromley – @beachpebble recently posted…CBeebies All Stars DVD Review. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  7. September 13, 2015 / 9:39 pm

    I do the ‘nursery run’ one day a week and I’m still late EVERY time. Totally agree about the checking the bag for notes thing though. Who knew three year olds required so much life admin paperwork stuff? We’re about to embark on open days for next year…. Hope the mums at the school gate at ours are as cool as yours! (I had a Pulp Fiction poster) x
    Kiran (Mummy Says) recently posted…These Days You’ll Forget and I’ll Remember Forever. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  8. September 14, 2015 / 9:10 pm

    Good heads up for when my babies start, although already doing number 1 with pre-school! Love it!

  9. Jules
    September 14, 2015 / 9:54 pm

    I recognise most of this, but try it times two! My twin boys just started school a week ago and I’ve never been so physically and emotionally exhausted…..well, perhaps around 4.5 years ago, but that’s a blur now!

  10. Mandy
    September 14, 2015 / 9:59 pm

    I bought 2 weeks worth of uniform for both my elder girls with one more to start nursery next sept!!! Saves you stressing out at the weekends to get the school stuff done and enjoy the kids!! As weekdays will be taken up with homework reading etc and the joy of school runs wears thin when even you struggle to drag yourself out of bed when the alarm goes off!!! But hey for now enjoy the good times!!!

  11. lisa
    September 15, 2015 / 2:13 pm

    My youngest son has been at school for nearly 2 weeks and only on half days (for the first 2 weeks), I have an older son as well in year 4, so my days have been drop off at 8.45am then pick my youngest son up for the first week at 11.45am, on the second week 1.15pm and pick my oldest son up at 3pm, so I am looking forward to picking them both up at 3. Completely agree with the asking what they did at school and all I get is “I played” or “I don’t know”

  12. September 15, 2015 / 2:56 pm

    Thanks for this. I’ve a way to go yet but it certainly got to me. I miss my little girl even if she’s just gone for a few hours – and then end up looking at pictures of her.

  13. September 16, 2015 / 5:08 am

    Oh my gosh I agree with everything here, except there’s no site of prosecco more like a cuppa at the local greasy spoon, but I’ll take whatever I get. The physical school run is so stressful, as my son walks soooo slowly and jumps in every puddle, looks at every leaf, before saying he’s too tired. Sigh! Great post.

    Yvadney x

  14. September 16, 2015 / 6:22 am

    I turned up early for collection early (on the one day a week I do collect him) for nearly a year. You are lucky if you have the ability to drop off and pick up every day because I’ve found schools are fond of the 3:15pm meeting on random days of the week (never a Friday when, if you’re part time you are less likely to work) which is not so great for working Mums.

    What I do recommend is you have a well stocked dressing up box. You never know when you will miss a letter or require some kind of non uniform dress up at short notice…
    Eat Like You Love Yourself recently posted…How to fit in exercise as a busy parent. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  15. September 17, 2015 / 10:44 pm

    Oh my goodness, yes to all of these! 2 and a bit weeks into the term and we’re all already so exhausted. Trying to keep up with PE days, forms galore, bundling 2 children who have no sense of urgency out the door by 8.30 – is it nearly half-term yet?! I have met so many lovely friends through my children’s school though. My social life is better now than it has been for years 🙂

  16. September 22, 2015 / 9:50 am

    I wanna go to your school…mine doesn’t have nearly enough invitations that involve prosecco!! Sad face!!
    Mama recently posted…September wardrobe additions. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  17. September 23, 2015 / 10:24 am

    Fab post!!! Nods head to all of them. Erin gets in. Gets the guinea pigs out and sits on YouTube till teatime. Happy as larry!!!! x
    brummymummyof2 recently posted…Time Stops For No Mum. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  18. September 24, 2015 / 8:19 pm

    You know I’ve been meaning to comment on this for aaages (and I’m finally here!), but I just want to say a HUGE YES to all of these. Although I think i’m starting to tire of the school run already and the novelty is wearing off, especially after the pissing rain we’ve had this week! 🙁 x
    Becky | Spirited Puddle Jumper recently posted…The start of a blogging new year!. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  19. September 25, 2015 / 3:52 pm

    Congratulations on making it to the end of the first week. You’re going to be in desperate need of half-term by the end of October! Keep going… it’s all you can do x
    Izzie Anderton recently posted…Mexico, here we come…. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

  20. October 5, 2015 / 9:54 pm

    Getting three children dressed, fed and out the house by 8:40 is enough to make me want to be back in bed by 9am and we are only on day one of full time! We do seem to have never ending letters appearing in the book bag though
    Bex @ The Mummy Adventure recently posted…We Love Rain – Natural Retreats. Why don’t you check it out?My Profile

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