I can still remember my first day at school. I was almost a whole year older than Frog will be when she starts school, having been born at the other end of the academic year. But I was still nervous, gripping my mum’s hand tightly on the short walk up the road.
As we sat on the floor for registration our new teacher asked us who was having school dinners. I had my lunch money in a special coin holder. I’d been given it on a family holiday to North Wales on a day trip to Anglesey Zoo. It was bright red and had a cord that went round your neck. My shiny coins clinked as I walked to the front of the classroom and handed the cash over. “Bring it in an envelope with your name on tomorrow,” said my teacher.
I wasn’t too bothered about school dinners. I can remember soggy pizza and semolina and being told to “eat it all up” by stern dinner ladies. We didn’t have the “clear your plate rule” at home, so it all felt a bit… scary. My prevailing memory of school includes packed lunches made lovingly by my mum, often including notes or stickers. School dinners became a rare occurrence, and I was OK with that. Continue reading »