End of term report: June 2014

It’s not quite the end of the week – but it is nearly the end of term.

And you can bet that, come mid August, all those bright wee things will have sprouted extra inches of leg and new hairstyles and far more in-depth knowledge of whatever it is they’re keen on.

So maybe it’s time instead to take stock of where things are at now – because assuredly it will all be different when the new term comes round.

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Like many other places, Edinburgh schools have been overtaken by loom bands. In some places, they are the reserve of girls; in others, boys are working away with the best of them to create whatever the latest plastic bangle look is coolest right now.

Mums chat in huddles, identifying the best deals and the new equipment to make the things on…and others just get fed up with lots of little coloured rubber bands everywhere.

Small D returns home with an aquarium. Think paper plate, blue-ish scene behind, clear film on the front to look like the glass. I rather like the two (actual) shells – and the carefully inscribed lines to show that they are falling down through the water.

Sports days are on and off and happen in the rain and sometimes even happen on good (bright, sunny) days.

There are end of term discos where everyone emerges dripping with sweat and clutching an ice lolly.

I think there may be the great ceremonial pile out off to the park on the last day of term, to play, eat a picnic lunch, play some more. Some of that gradual leave taking before parents batten down the hatches and engage the hard-won Long Holiday tactics.

There are coffees snatched, and parent conversations indulged in before the holidays begin, and an actually still heated beverage becomes but a happy dream.

There are calculations about rate of hair growth and the possibility of hot summer, and decisions to be made about summer haircuts.

There is the counting down of final packed lunches, and snacks, and school uniform washing loads. And there is the complicated deliberation about teacher presents/cards at the end of the school year.

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Life becomes a little bit more complex at this stage of school – but not too much so yet. Not too knowing yet. Thankfully.

Boys and girls both engage with creating their own little worlds online (mainly through Minecraft).

There are Brownies activities, and judo competitions, and a hundred and one other ways to signal the end of scheduled time for a few weeks.

Playdates involve more requests for (computer) screen time – but messing about outdoors is still high on the list of entertainments.

Swings, and hide and seek, and monkey bars at the park. Even a hammock to try out at a friend’s house, if you’re lucky.

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We have this stretch of several days of good weather. (For those used to one day sun, one day sea mist in Edinburgh, that’s unusual.) Prolonged grass cutting ensues. The new picnic bench is ready for action in the garden.

There is a scurry for sun dresses and skirts and lighter tops and sunscreen. Wearing shorts to the office (if there’s no visitors that day).

I hunt around the attic for those items that can actually come back out for use: inflatables. Games to play outdoors on the grass.

I work around the other items tucked away, those ones for rainy days and cold days and miserable days.

Not just now. Who knows how long the sun may last, but for now, we’ll live in hope of a little more summer to enjoy.

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