Thursday, 29 August 2013

Back to School

 Where Do Grandparents Fit Into Back-To-School

We are quickly approaching the last day of summer vacation for school children in Ontario Canada, September 3rd is the agreed upon date.  Growing up my US cousins always were in school at least two weeks before me.  So  to answer this question I Googled it and found that every school district in the USA sets their own return to school date and the earliest I found was August 18th.
On the drive home from work today we were discussing back to school traditions and Paula wondered if I was going blog about this.  Well in my experience back-to-school activities were exclusively for parents and their children: Grandparents not invited.  This may have something to do with my tendency to say yes to too many unnecessary items.  I found out that one of my friends she helps out her single parent son with back-to-school through purchasing the school cloths, while in another family the backpack and lunch kit are purchased by Grandparents.
Shopping for school when our children attended is nothing like today.  Then the supplies were limited to a backpack, lunch bag, crayons/pencil crayon, and a ruler, everything else was supplied by the school.  Today the list includes all of those items plus, pencils, pens, Kleenex, note book, art paper, binders, lined paper, USB sticks, in door and out door shoes and more.  Lunches are also more complicated no longer can you send any foods that contain peanuts: my boys lived on peanut butter sandwiches, cookies and snack bars.

 A Possible Back to School Tradition

One type of story that Grandchildren can never get enough of is what school was like in the olden times, you know when dinosaurs walked the earth.   

 When they ask this question which they do, I pull out the old gem that my Grandpa John would tell me, “I had to walk 5 miles to school up hill both ways”.  It took me a long time to figure out that was not possible – the uphill both ways part. Grandpa went to school in Russia and I have no idea how far he walked.

So I guess there is a back to school tradition we could start – telling them stories about our experiences as children.  Do you remember your favourite teacher in public school?  What made her the best teacher ever?  What subject did you like? Which one did you not like?  What funny events happened?  Share these with your children.

 Grandpa showed the girls a honey pail that was just like the one that he took his lunches to school in.  How he took raw potatoes to school in the winter and how they would put them on the school boiler when they arrived at school and have baked potatoes for lunch.

Grandma Snyder
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