Have you ever been watching TV and a family member comes along, sits down and asks, “What are you watching?” You mutter the name of the programme and carry on watching. They then ask a whole lot of questions; who is that; why are they doing that; why is that person crying? You shush them, but it’s too late your focus has been taken off the programme. Then, they walk off in a huff saying, “Well I was only asking!”
That family member came in after the programme had started, disrupted your focus, then walked off still having no idea what was going on. Sound familiar?
Now, transfer this exact scenario to the child who arrives late to school, after the bell has gone and the class is gathered on the mat listening to the teacher. The child comes in and sits down. They disrupt the focus of the children they sit down next to, they disrupt the focus of the teacher who acknowledges their arrival. The teacher then carries on and the child is sitting there wondering what an earth the teacher is talking about because they missed the vital first few minutes. When the children are sent off to carry out the task the teacher set, the child who came in late does not know exactly what to do, so starts the day off on the back foot.
Have you ever been in a meeting and someone arrives 10 minutes late. They come into the meeting saying sorry, sorry, the traffic was awful. They have immediately interrupted the focus of the group. Then the person leading the meeting decides to do a recap to fill the latecomer in. The rest of you are sitting there wasting time, waiting for the recap to be over so you can get on with the business at hand. Inevitably the latecomer asks questions which relate to the early part of the meeting, the part they missed. More valuable time is wasted answering those questions, when if they had just been on time, they would know the answer. Sound familiar?
Now, transfer this exact scenario to the child who comes in very late. The teacher decides to recap for that child and 25 others are left sitting on the mat basically doing nothing while the teacher fills the latecomer in. This is one person who has just disrupted the learning of 25 others, all due to being very late to school.
Every day, we have many children arriving just after the 8.50 bell. Some habitually arrive 10 – 20 minutes late. There are two things to consider. Firstly, they are missing out on vital information which would have set them up for the day. They are immediately disadvantaged. Secondly, what sort of message are those children being given? That it is ok to be late? That deadlines don’t matter? That it is ok to keep friends waiting at the restaurant, disrupt business colleagues, be late to the movies and walk in front of a whole row of people.
Please drop your child at school well before the 8.50 bell. Give them time to get organised for the day, socialise with their friends, go into class feeling relaxed, not rushed. It might not seem a big thing to you, but punctuality is an important lesson for life.
Parking Around the School
Oh dear, it seems to be my day for having a wee moan! I have again been contacted by one of our neighbours who sent me photos of our parents parked on yellow lines, then leaving their cars to come and collect their child. The yellow lines indicate no stopping/parking. If you park on yellow lines, you are inconveniencing other road users and potentially putting children at risk.