When M&S contacted me about their My School Years campaign and asked for some images of me in school uniform from when I was a child, I had a lot of fun reminiscing and laughing over old photos.
I’m risking two of my sisters disowning me by sharing the photo below. It makes me smile though. There are just five years between me and my eldest sister and two between me and my other older sister. This means that growing up we were always pretty close.
I actually think that my sisters get off quite lightly though, I’m the slightly chubby scary hair bearing one on the right. Possibly scary big hair was fashionable in the 80’s?
The photo above was actually from my first school St Kew, but we moved I think the next year to St Columb Major and the uniform was very different. Though apparently the big hair issues were a battle I continued having to fight as the years went by.
I remember finding the school change really hard, we’d just moved house away from all of our family and friends in St Mabyn and there were all these children to get used to. I felt like such an outsider, but luckily I came to love the school. My boys only ever went to one primary school, the same one my youngest is still at.
When I went to school, uniform rules were a lot more relaxed than they are now for my boys at their schools. If I wanted to wear a normal t-shirt under my school jumper instead of a polo shirt, no one said anything. I actually went through a stage of wearing purple trainers to my primary school for quite a while, without them even being glanced at twice by the teachers.
I loved those trainers, neither of my boys could get away with it now. To be honest though, I am actually quite glad that the boys have to wear a particular uniform and stick to it. They look so much smarter than I ever did, and there are no arguments over what they have to wear, as they don’t have a choice. Luckily being boys, they don’t have the same crazy hair issues I did, although they are both desperate for a hair cut currently.
We have pretty much always bought the main staples of the boys’ school uniform from Marks and Spencer. I’m not just saying that because I’m in collaboration with them on this piece. Their trousers, shorts, shirts and polo shirts have been our regular buys for back to school time.
These days at his secondary Fin needs to wear a blazer and tie, which means he looks so unbelievably grown up at times I want to embarrass him by being all emotional. At my secondary school we had to learn how to put a tie on, but his is a clip on thankfully. This is one less stress for the mornings.
This photo is of the boys on Fin’s first ever day at school, an emotional day for any parent.
I feel a little emotional looking at it now, look how small they used to be! At ten and twelve they are both sneaking up on me height wise at a steady rate. I tried to convince them to do a mini reenactment for the photo below, mostly for my own amusement. Well I tried anyway, apparently cuddling your little brother isn’t cool any more.
I actually did get a few nice shots of them looking staged and smiley and in much better lighting …. but personally I prefer the photos I’ve included below. This was a pretty hilarious photo shoot.
They’re in their new uniforms thanks to Marks and Spencer. You can see that uniforms need to be pretty hard-wearing in our house!
School for them is so different from how it was for me and my sisters. I think the biggest change is the homework, not that they don’t get as much as we did. If anything they get more, but it is so much easier for them to do.
If we were stuck on our homework, we had to ask our parents for help or pay a visit to the local library to hopefully find a book to help. Children today can just ask their good old Uncle Google for some help, or pop to YouTube to be given all the answers. They use iPads at school, we had to do everything by hand.
Ha I can still remember when I was close to leaving primary school, how big a deal it was that the school had a computer delivered for the first time. One computer for the whole school, with very basic graphics looking back now. The boys find it hilarious that the internet wasn’t really properly usable for most people until I was in secondary school.
When I think of school days I think of swapping pogs in the playground and saving my money all week for the tuck shop on a Friday – I don’t think you get tuck shops in schools now with their healthy eating policies and whatnot. I find that a little bit sad that an old tradition has gone, as far as I’m concerned with my own children it is everything in moderation.
School days were playing with hula hoops, hopscotch, running around acting out scenes from the new Jurassic Park film – yes the first one. It was playing outside with friends, making new friends and rushing to be the first in the Tuck shop queue in case all the Push Pops were gone when I got there.
Luckily my own boys spend a lot of time outdoors at home, and I love watching them from the window running around with their friends. I don’t get to watch them making memories at school, but I love hearing about them in the car on the way home. At home I get to see them running with their friends and being care free and so happy…. which is everything that I could wish for them.
The school days are the most worry free days of your life, I have no idea why I was always in such a rush to grow up. I love my life, but oh to not be the one to have to think about bills and work and whatnot for a while would be pretty amazing. Does anyone please have a time machine, I quite fancy a Push Pop and a game of hopscotch…. ?
What did you love about school and what is different during your child’s time at school than yours?
If you fancy a trip down memory lane, then pop to the M&S website and check out their My School Years page for a look back at school uniforms over the decades.
You can see if you can spot the uniform most like the one you wore to school, and if you’re feeling brave, then share a bit of nostalgia with the Marks and Spencer team, by sharing your own school photos on social media with the hashtag #MySchoolYears.