Tag Archives: Starting School

Starting School Part 1 – How to Pack the Backpack

Young boy walks along path with big red backpack

Starting school – for the first time, or at a new school, or even after the long summer break, can be a challenge for both our children and ourselves. We carefully pack their school bag with the things that will help them through their day – a nutritious lunch, a spare pair of pants and pencils. But it’s easy to forget our children carry an emotional backpack as well. Our special role, as parents and carers, is to help them pack and unpack that bag. It’s at least as important as a healthy lunch or a good night’s sleep. Continue reading

Non Muslim Mum and Daughter in solidarity.

Helping Our Children Through Troubled Times – November 2015 Newsletter

Non Muslim Mum and Daughter in solidarity.

Recently, we visited a local mosque, and put scarves on in solidarity. My daughter told the reporter “We are here to be together as one big family group.”

As parents, how do we respond to shocking and violent events – whether they are terrorism, wars, awful mass shootings, or natural disasters?

We can get Listening Time for ourselves, we can listen to our children and answer their questions with pictures of what humans can do together for good, and offer them the huge resassurance of regular Special Time.

Plus some free resources as you move towards the start of school, and courses starting in the New Year.

Here’s our November 2015 Newsletter. Enjoy!


Who is Starting School?

An old school, built in 1890

An Old School Building by Madeleine Winter


If summer is drawing to a close (as it is in the Northern Hemisphere) you may be starting to think about the start of school.  Or here in Australia, you might be preparing for your child to start school in the New Year. For some, it is a return to something known and understood. But for those of us beginning school for the first time, it’s a big deal. And I mean for the big people as well as the little ones.

Who’s Starting School?

Often, as we prepare our families for the start of school, our attention is on the children.   Will they be upset when I have to leave? Will they make friends? Will they know what they need to know?   Will they learn well?

However, I’d like to start with the focus on us parents. I have not met many parents whose children are starting school who feel entirely calm and relaxed about it. For many of us, school brings up a lot of feelings. After all, we spent a lot of years there. Some of it was good, but some of it was hard. Most of us have not had a chance to talk much about those experiences. And some of us would rather not. Continue reading

Starting School – Packing the Connection Vitamins

Man delights in child in play

What Next? by Madeleine S Winter, CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0 INT

You probably have a list of things that you make sure you put into your child’s backpack every morning before school. Their lunch, a hat, sunscreen, their homework or “show and tell”. Those things are all important, and whatever happens – don’t forget them, or it might mean you have to go all the way back home again to get them!

There’s something else that children really need in their backpack, also. And now I am talking about their emotional backpack. They carry this to and from school, too. We don’t always see this backpack, but we often feel it – when it is too full of hard feelings, accumulated through the day, or not full enough of the important feelings – a sense of being loved and connected and cared about. When this happens, this backpack gets really heavy, starts bumping into things, won’t fit in the back of the car. Continue reading