94 year old resident Kathleen Dupury, a former headmistress at Park House Primary Chesterfield, has shared her secrets for preparing to go back to school in September!
“About a week before the start of term, is usually when the butterflies and nerves start. It’s not just the children who feel it mind, us teachers and parents know all too well about the mixed feelings around getting ready to go back to school,’ said Kathleen who now a resident at The Old Vicarage in Clay Cross, was headmistress at the school for 15 years before retiring at age 60.
‘My best advice for the teachers is to plan to have fun! I know it’s a little different these days than in my time, but in my opinion, having fun is the best way to inspire children to learn. To the parents, especially those with children just starting school, I think it’s best to see school as the start of a wonderful journey for the children. It needn’t be daunting, but your patience and practising at home will be key to getting them settled in quick. Also, don’t hover by the classroom door, say a quick goodbye and be on your way!’ said Kathleen.
‘In my day, teaching was based entirely on the three Rs – reading, writing and arithmetics but these days, technology is more of a priority and I agree this is what children need to learn or else they wouldn’t be equipped!’ Kathleen concluded.
Children from local primary schools as well as mums and tots groups regularly visit residents at The Old Vicarage, “Residents and our team really do look forward to having the children visit us and this intergenerational interaction is so important. It’s been lovely talking to Kathleen about her days as a headmistress, it’s brought back many fond memories for her and I’m sure her tips will be well received!,’ explained Karen Betts, Old Vicarage Manager.