Five things my school starter shouldn’t already know

The words "Five things my school starter shouldn't already know" on a desktop surrounded by kids' stationery.

Last week, parents were nervously waiting to find out their kids’ school places. We were among them and, for me at least, it was strangely nice to worry about something other than coronavirus and its wider implications for a day.

Having gone through the process twice before, we were braced for a long wait. It seems that our local council have finally got their act together though, as we heard soon after 9am.

It was good news; we got our first choice. So, assuming kids will be back in school by September, youngest will be joining her brothers at our brilliant local county primary.

As the waiting and resultant substitute worry were so short-lived, I’ve been trying to keep it going by fretting about the things she probably shouldn’t already know before starting school…

The birds and bees

I’m so glad they teach basic sex education at primary school. It’s important that kids get an understanding of where babies come from. And, from a selfish point of view, it’ll make ‘the talk’ that much easier once my lot reach their teens.

But I wasn’t ready for oldest to impart this knowledge over Sunday lunch. Complete with the universal hand gesture for intercourse. Youngest inevitably found it funny and regularly repeats it while cackling maniacally. So that’s good.

Answering back

Children with older siblings often learn things before their peers. This can, of course, serve them well – academically, for example. But the flip side is acquiring the fine art of sass ahead of time.

Youngest really knows how to answer us back. She never does it at nursery, so this tells me she understands it very well. She has told me to “get in the bin” when chivvied along while dithering over meals. Rude!

Certain song lyrics

I believe it’s important to introduce children to a variety of music from an early age and it’s something that I feel we’ve done really well. For every irritating Pinkfong song in her repertoire, there are five decent tracks.

But we have to be careful with some. Particularly one of our favourite acts, Kasabian. While she genuinely believes that our strategic coughs are actual lyrics, she does know most of the words to You’re In Love With a Psycho. Oops.

Grown-up superheroes

One of the difficulties with superheroes is the fact that there are always kid-friendly LEGO video game equivalents. As a result, my three know EVERY character in the Marvel Universe.

And so it was that during a recent parent’s evening – for which we couldn’t get a babysitter – she was allowed to draw while we talked. “Wow, that’s great! Which hero is that?” asked our son’s teacher. “Deadpool.” Man alive.

Tech skills

While I’m of the opinion that it’s never too early to learn tech skills, I have to concede that it’s a double-edged sword. The stuff that youngest knows now compared to what her brothers did at the same age is dizzying.

This is no slight on them – just the twin facts that technology has evolved and she has the benefit of their experience. So I apologise in advance if she manages to hack into the Pentagon from the comfort of her new classroom.

Do you have a child starting school in September? Have they picked up anything they shouldn’t already know?


  1. John Adams

    Tom! Have you not been talking to your kids about sex? I’m going to politely disagree and say such talks should happen at home long before they hear anything at school. That said, your Sunday lunch must have been funny!

    Shame you had to wait until 9pm about the school. that must have been a tense, tense day. Stay safe.

    1. Post

      Ha! Well, he learned at school at the age of six and that’s early enough from my point of view. 🙂

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