Back to School
August 17, 2022
Parent and toddler having a discussion about dinner

With the summer holidays nearing an end, it’s time to start thinking about all the things your child needs to do and have ready before that first day back to school in September.

School Clothes/Uniform

Uniform and clothing is arguably the thing that schools keep an eye out the most for after the summer return and it’s important that your child has what they need. Many schools in London and the UK have their own uniform which can be purchased through the school directly or an affiliated store/website. If your child is starting a new school (in Year 7 or they have moved school) then the uniform shop is likely to be a big one. If not, a brand-new uniform is not needed every year. Items such as blazers and backpacks tend to last for a long time and only need to be bought once every few years, whereas shirts and jumpers may need to be bought again. This is especially the case if your child has grown significantly over the holidays which always seems to happen. Another key part of the uniform to buy before school starts again is school shoes. Different schools have different criteria and most tend to request smart black shoes or Kickers. Below are a list of brands that do school clothing for kids!


John Lewis:






New Look:




If your child’s school does not have a uniform policy and they can wear their own clothes, there are also things to consider. Clothes that are comfortable but also practical should be considered, whilst also keeping in line with the school’s dress code. This can often be found on the school’s website or will be emailed to you in due course.

In addition to everyday uniform and clothes, P.E. uniform must also be remembered. This can either be a uniform that the school asks you to buy, or again own clothes depending on the school. Either way, trainers will be a requirement and it usually doesn’t matter what kind they are.

    Stationary ideas for going back to school

    There is nothing worse than turning up to class and not having the equipment you need. To avoid this, an end-of-summer stationary shop is always recommended. What is needed will vary depending on the year group your child is in. For primary school students, equipment is usually given in class whereas for secondary school you are expected to bring in your own equipment, which will take some getting used to if your child is now going into year 7. Most schools ask for students to have a clear pencil case, 2 black or blue pens, a ruler, a compass, and a scientific calculator. The last one is especially important as subjects such as maths and physics require more advanced calculators and schools may not have any spares to give out in lessons.

    Minions stationary set with a notebook six pens, a ruler and a pencil case

    Minion stationary set

    Summer homework

    Whilst the summer holidays are a well-earned break from school, it’s not a time to switch off completely. This is the main reason schools assign homework to be completed over the holidays which usually isn’t too intense but just enough to recap the knowledge of the previous year. In addition to that, summer homework will sometimes have a bit of pre-work to be completed for the following year. This material will be assumed to have been so not competing it will mean students start the year at a disadvantage. Therefore it’s important that your child enjoys the last few weeks of holiday, but also prepares themselves academically for going back.


    Whilst on the topic of academic preparation, the end of the summer holidays is a great chance to put yourself at an advantage for the following year by doing a few hours of extra work on top of the homework. This applies more to students in secondary school but can also be done by older primary students. The syllabus for the year your child is going into can be found online and from this, the topics that are going to be covered. Your child can start pre-reading or even watching videos on these topics, so that when they begin covering them in school they already have a strong foundation and can spend more time practising harder questions at school.


    Sleep schedule

    The beauty of the summer holidays is that it gives you weeks on end to do what you really want to, and for most of us that means sleeping in quite a lot. The problem that arises is that of trying to wake up early in the morning when it’s time to start the school run again, and the same thing applies to your children. A trick I have found to work well is setting an alarm for the time you will wake up at school a week before. This way your body adjusts back into waking up early, and gets tired enough by the evening to go to sleep at an appropriate time.


    Create a study space

    Even with the great weather of the summer holidays, we are always bound to spend some time in our rooms just doing nothing (which is one of the highlights of the holidays in my opinion). However, your child spends time in their room, whether that be playing video games, watching movies, or on their phone, it becomes an area that is completely associated with relaxation. As school starts again, homework and revision are going to also start and thus they will need a dedicated workspace, either in their room or elsewhere in the house. It is best to decide on this space before starting school and even do their summer homework there to get used to it.


    ….and relax

    Returning to school isn’t easy and you and your child may feel slightly overwhelmed. But it’s important to remember that it is still a holiday so take these last few weeks to prepare, but also to enjoy yourselves. It is the longest of the holidays (and also the one with the best weather) so it’s a great opportunity for your child to unwind before heading back.

    These tips should give you a general idea of the steps you should take as we approach the return of school for the new academic year, but it is not definitive. Schools will vary on dress and academic policies which you can find on their websites to get a more specific idea of how to prepare and what needs to be bought.

    Good luck to your child for the start of the new school year.


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