The autumn 2021 school term has started in earnest and here is my back to school guide.
I’m still in shock that my baby is now in Year 2. I keep asking myself where all the time went. It feels like I blinked and my day-old baby turned into a beautiful, intelligent young girl.
I hope you find this back to school guide useful, as it is based on my experiences preparing my daughter for school this September 2021:
1. School Trousers
When my daughter was in Year 1, getting the right uniform for her body shape was a nightmare. Since birth, my daughter has been on the 75th percentile for her age and continues to remain so. Also, being a winter baby, she’s the oldest child in her class and about a head taller than some of the other children. I took my daughter to a local school shop to get fitted and found that trousers for children aged 8 – 9 (even though she is still only 6 years old) were too tight for her waist. The assistant recommended trousers for children aged 9 – 10. These fit her but were too long, so need to be hemmed. I felt like I had no choice, so bought two pairs for £15 each.
I wasn’t pleased with my purchase, so I looked through the George by Asda website and found that they had trousers with an extra 2cm allowance on the waist. So I ordered both the Girls Black Plus Fit Jersey School Trousers 2 Pack and the Girls Grey Plus Fit Jersey School Trousers 2 Pack for £8 per pack of 2 trousers in size 8 – 9 years old. The length was perfect for my daughter and I did not need to hem it. The extra 2cm was just what my daughter needed.
So, if you have a daughter with an African body shape, then I totally recommend buying school uniform trousers from Asda.
2. School Shirts
I was doing my top-up food shopping at Lidl a few days ago and saw that they had a pack of two school shirts for £1.75. Considering that I bought one PE t-shirt for my daughter at our local school shop for £6, I knew what a bargain was. Unfortunately, they only had two packs in my daughter’s size, so you have to keep an eye out as I imagine that due to the price, they sell out pretty quickly.
If you have children in primary school, I recommend buying your school uniform supplies from Lidl. You have to go in-store as they do not offer a home delivery service. That said, I recently discovered that Aldi now offers home delivery via Deliveroo. Aldi has similar prices to Lidi.
3. Leather School Shoes
I had been suspecting since my daughter was in Year 1 that she needed school shoes that had a wide fitting. So, when we went to our local school shop, the assistant checked her feet size and confirmed that she did indeed have wide feet. The only problem with that is that most shops I tried including George by Asda do not have a wide variety of school shoes with a wide fitting. Even the school shop did not have any shoes with a wide fitting. I was truly shocked that a school shop did not cater to different shoe fittings.
Anyhoos, whilst I was at Lidl, I noticed a pair of leather school shoes that looked like they had a wide fitting. My daughter was not with me, so I bought it and took it home. When my daughter tried it, she had the biggest smile on her face, confirming that the shoes were very comfortable for her and were a perfect fit.
It was really important to me that I got the correct fitting for her feet because her little toes were beginning to look like they wanted to form bunions. The best thing about the shoes for me? It cost £5.99 as opposed to shoes at the school shop that cost £39.99. I am not too bothered about the quality of the shoe because I know that in less than a year, my daughter would outgrow them. Another important feature about the shoes I bought was that they were lace-free.
Even as an adult myself, I do not wear any shoes with laces as I find them a bother. I think for young children, laces are a trip hazard.
4. School Stationery
Two days before the start of the September 2021 school term, I received an email from my daughter’s school. The email was to remind parents that children should bring a small pencil case with essential
stationery items as follows:
• Coloured pencils
• Writing pencils
• Handwriting pens
• Glue sticks
• Children’s scissors
• Small, labelled hand sanitiser
Thankfully, my daughter already had most of the things on the list. This is especially so because my daughter was gifted a pack of 30 Stabilo pens by Create and Craft – a multi-channel craft retailer which includes a great website packed with stationery ideas for drawing, colouring, writing and studying – as well as craft supplies to suit every need.
So, if you still have any school stationeries to buy for your child, then check out the Create and Craft website.
5. Lockable Storage Boxes
Over the summer holidays, I allowed my daughter to watch as much TV as she wanted. This is on the agreement that once she is back at school, she gets no more than an hour a day to watch TV at the most. However, I know that sometimes, when my daughter goes “mamaaaaa pleaseeeeeeeee” my heart is too weak to say no to her.
So, to ensure that I don’t falter, I was quick to agree to review a lockable storage box by Lockabox for just this reason. These lockable storage boxes are perfect for helping children with the transition of going back to school by allowing them to place all distractions in the box and lock them away whilst they complete their homework. They can also be used to ensure the lunch box snacks aren’t all eaten in one go!
6. Afterschool snack
My daughter gets pretty hungry when I pick her up from school at the end of the day. We recently received a letterbox cake by bakerdays and all I can say is OMG! As a baker, I am very picky about the cakes I eat. I find that a lot of bakers fill the cake with lots of sugar, so it is sugar sweet as opposed to flavour sweet. Does that make any sense?
Anyhoos, I had a very small slice of the cake and I had to have another one. I found it to be full of flavour and moist but most importantly, it was not sugar sweet.
Whenever I do not feel like baking myself and want to give my daughter an afterschool snack, I would not hesitate to give her a slice of a letterbox cake by Bakerdays.
Use the discount code SB15 to get 15% off your order with bakerdays. Bakerdays make birthday cakes for everyone, cakes for all occasions, cupcakes and brownies. The best part is that the cakes are meant to fit through your letterbox.
7. Personalised Water Bottles
When my daughter was in Year 1, I remember her telling me that another child from a different class thought she was using their own water bottle as they had the same water bottle. When you live in the same district, there’s a very big chance that some of you shop in the same supermarket.
To prevent such problems, I kept my eyes out for customisable water bottles that would have my daughter’s name printed on them. This way, there won’t be any misunderstandings.
So, you can imagine my joy when I found that AlwaysPersonal.co.uk sell customised and insulated water bottles in a range of colours. It was just what I needed for my daughter. With a capacity of 500 mls, it could contain just enough water for my daughter.
I also found that these unique metal bottles keep drinks hot for up to 12 hours, or cold for up to 24 hours!