The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has made it a very strange time for parents, teachers and children alike this year – something we’re sure we probably don’t need to tell you! While the last few months before the summer holidays only saw a proportion of students head back to the classroom, schools are now set to reopen fully in September, which means your little girl will be back to full time education in just a few weeks.
So this week, we’re taking a quick detour from talking about our sparkly shoes here at the Sparkle Club, to give you a heads up on the latest government guidance for when your precious girl is back to school.
Be careful not to share
Schools are known for being collaborative learning environments, and that means your little girl has probably borrowed and lent her fair share of calculators, pencils, erasers, rulers and similar stationery – maybe even a bit of PE kit here and there! But according to the government’s new guidelines, for public health reasons it’s best if pupils now keep certain items for their own individual use. Here are a few of the key examples they gave.
Pens, pencils and other stationery
Pens and pencils are probably the most commonly-borrowed type of school equipment, but the government have said that it’s now best if your precious child keeps her own pens and pencil cases to herself for the time being.
If she needs a new pencil case or a new set of pencils before the start of the next school term, we’ve got no shortage of options to choose from in our Back To School Gifts right here at the Sparkle Club, such as our Childrens yellow cats and dogs pencil case or our pets colouring pencil set.
From now on, schools are also going to be careful with shared school equipment too, which will be used on a rotational basis, and / or cleaned frequently between different ‘bubbles’ of children.
Individual school bags
The government recommends that children try and limit the amount of things they bring to school, and only carry the bare essentials with them. Here at the Sparkle Club we’ve got various types of bags according to what your little girl needs, from general-purpose backpacks to our Pink Unicorn sparkly lunch bag or our Girls unicorn and fairies drawstring swim bag. Whatever you need, we’ve got you covered!
This is perhaps one of the harder changes for schools and parents to try and accommodate, but the government recommends that each child have their own textbook where possible, to limit the amount of passing objects between each other. They’ve also said that pupils and teachers can take shared resources home, but they’d strongly advise against it unless strictly necessary.
While the weather will still be cooling in September, it’s still going to be important for your little girl be able to keep herself hydrated. As you can imagine though, communal water fountains are going to be (at least temporarily) discontinued in schools, so water bottles will have to be filled every day at home and then sent in instead.
PE equipment or sparkly shoes
For very similar reasons, the government is strongly advising against borrowing or sharing garments or footwear, whether for school purposes like PE lessons, or costumes and dressing up in their own time. That’s not to say that your little girl can’t still enjoy her very own pair of sparkle shoes though – especially since she doesn’t have to share them with anyone!
A few more general rules to be aware of
In addition to the advice against sharing of school equipment and personal possessions, the government have also emphasised some more general rules about how children will need to behave in school.
Washing hands and wearing masks
‘Wash your hands’ is without a doubt the golden rule of 2020. Although children so far seem to be at less risk of catching Covid-19 than adults, the government are still highlighting the importance of children regularly washing their hands, and for at least 20 seconds each time. If your little girl is wearing a disposable face mask on the way into school, she’ll be asked to take it off and put it in the bin when she gets in, and re-usable masks equally need to be put away.
Avoid public transport
The government is advising parents to make sure that children are taking dedicated school transport where possible, such as school buses, rather than regular public transport. There will be a strict hygiene programme for school buses too, with pupils over 11 requiring a face mask when using the bus, and all pupils asked to use hand sanitiser when getting on and off the bus, no matter what age they are.
If that’s not an idea your little girl is particularly keen on (and to be honest, we don’t blame her!), then you might be pleased to hear that teachers, pupils and parents are also being encouraged to create ‘walking buses’ in which groups of children and adults can walk into school together.
Whether it’s part of a fun school trip or a visit to a friend’s house, the idea of a sleepover is often the most exciting part for young girls. Unfortunately the government is strongly discouraging this overnight stays at the moment, helping children and adults stay appropriately social distanced. However, the government hasn’t ruled out day trips to galleries and museums – as long as she’s not taking her toothbrush, there’s still plenty of opportunities for her to enjoy herself on fun days out!
Wearing school uniforms
Although the government has acknowledged that children have increasingly been wearing their own clothes to school over the past few months, they’re now encouraging a return to school uniform. They have taken care to state that these uniforms don’t need to be cleaned more often than normal, and acknowledged that where parents are struggling financially, they may find making the switch back more difficult.
Go to after school clubs, and PE outdoors
These are some of the best ways your little girl will be able to socialise with her peers outside of class – which is not only pleasant for her, but can take the pressure off you slightly as a parent! The government have now ruled that before and after school clubs can resume, although schools will have to try and limit the number of children in each session, just in case. Similarly, a fresh focus will be placed on outdoor Physical Exercise classes, with outdoor facilities being encouraged (although most contact sports will be avoided).
There’s no doubt that life will still be quite different for a while yet, but a little preparation can go a long way towards making things easier for both you and your little girl! If you’re looking for anything specific in our range, don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01254 296 554.
Keep up to date with our latest news, products and special offers by subscribing to our mailing list.