When you’re a parent, time just flies. One minute you’re welcoming your new bundle of joy into the world and the next you’re sending them back out into the world again for their first day at school. This is a day that can be daunting and scary, both for the child and their parents, but it is a significant day that neither of you will ever forget.
Most new school parents will have spent their summer shopping for vital school uniform and school supplies. We all want our children to have all the essentials they need for their first day at school. But when you’re shopping, you should also consider buying something impractical too. Don’t forget to commemorate this special and important milestone by buying your child a gift they can treasure forever. Here are some of our favourite starting school gift ideas:
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Top Starting School Gifts and Tips
A Special Figurine
A wonderful gift idea is a special figurine that your child can keep safe in their bedroom and treasure forever. Willow Tree ornaments offer a beautiful ‘Love of learning’ figurine, featuring a child carrying a school book, which is a wonderful way to ignite their own love of learning. Alternatively, you could consider a Willow Tree ornaments mother and child to remind your child that, whilst you might not be with them every day, you have a bond that can’t be broken.
The best thing about figurine gifts is that they can be proudly displayed but don’t take up too much room. They can also be moved from place to place, meaning they can take it with them when they head to collage or set up their own home (two extra big milestones to worry about!)
A Photo Frame
In the first week of September, parents up and down the land will take photos of their children outside their front door as they leave for their first day of the schoolyear. This photo is a right of passage, and a photo frame gift is a wonderful way to commemorate it.
Choose a photo frame in their favourite colour, or featuring some of their favourite things (animals and cartoon characters are popular choices) to surprise and delight them. As this is a relatively inexpensive gift, you can always reframe the precious photo and put it into something more sophisticated and grown up as their tastes change.
A Starting School Book
Is your child feeling nervous and reluctant to start school for the first time, or struggling to know what to expect? As well as talking through their worries and concerns with them, a starting school book is a great way to outline exactly what will happen during their first week at school and make the whole process feel more fun and familiar. Janet Ahlberg’s ‘Starting School’ is a wonderful illustrated book to introduce the concept of the school world, and will make a great gift.
Keeping the lines of dialogue open during this scary time is essential for calming and preparing your child as much as possible. Why not also buy them a sketch pad and colouring crayons? Many children prefer to draw their thoughts and fears rather than vocalise them, and this will make that process much easier for them.
Most pre-school children can’t tell the time, but on the theme of learning, why not buy them their really first watch? Timex sell great teaching watches to make learning to tell the time easy, and these come in a wide range of colours and styles to suit everyone’s tastes. Why not sit down and teach them to tell the time in the summer before they start school? This is a wonderful bonding experience for both of you.
Once they’ve learnt to tell the time, they will be able to count down until the end of the school day, when they will be seeing you again!
Finally, if you prefer to choose gifts that are more practical than ornamental then the back to school market offers you hundreds of great options. Why not choose something they will be able to use in the classroom, such as pencils and crayons with their name on. A personalised keyring to add to their bookbag would also be a nice touch as well as being handy. It will help them to find their bag in a rush!
Other fun touches to consider include personalised first day of school socks, new school-coloured hair bands and hair accessories.
Image Credit: Back to school gifts photo by Tess Trunk courtesy of Shutterstock.