Monthly archives "August"

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The New Classrooms

Going back to school this year will be different – but that doesn’t mean we can’t make the best of it!

Have a look at the different ways in which classrooms around the world are innovating and making an unconventional situation fun.

  • By making social distancing fun with cool hats:
  • By transforming the scary looking desks with protections shields into trucks:

  • By reminding the children how nice it is to see them and each other again. And each pupil getting their own materials means no more fight over who gets to use what first!

  • By creating a game on the floor with all the directions they are or aren’t allowed to go:

We all want to go back to normality: going out as we please, hugging, breathing without worry. But seeing as this might take a little longer than expected the next best thing is to be prepared for the new circumstances.  

People have an amazing ability to adapt – children in particular excel at this. So on this back to school don’t panic and don’t worry about what you can’t control, simply adapt and make the best of an odd, unexpected, unpredictable situation. 

Do you have any ideas to make the start of school this year easier and more fun for children? Let us know!

MY NAMETAGS’ RESEARCH FINDS BRITS BIN 1.4 MILLION WEARABLE SCHOOL UNIFORMS EVERY YEAR

At My Nametags, we know how quickly children grow and how fast families can get through clothes. Whether it’s stubborn stains or growth spurts, the turnover of clothing in families can feel very high.

However, recent figures from WRAP suggest that extending the lifespan of clothes by just three months could result in a 5-10 percent reduction in carbon, water, and waste footprints. So, to try to understand this issue a little better, we conducted research into parents’ attitudes towards second-hand clothing for their children.

THE FINDINGS

To our surprise, our study found that more than one in 10 UK parents throw their children’s uniforms away once they have outgrown them, even if they are still in a wearable condition.

When it comes to damaged items, almost half of parents said they would prefer to throw the garment away than attempt to fix it. What’s more, over half of families own clothing that they have never worn.

It seems parents still consider new to be best as 81 percent always buy their children’s school uniforms new. There are several reasons behind this, with many suggesting it is easier (31 percent) and that they want their kids to have the latest things (19 percent). In addition, nearly half (41 percent) said they don’t like the thought of their children wearing previously owned clothes.

While it seems that some proactive measures are being taken to make clothing last longer, with almost a third of parents buying uniforms in bigger sizes so their kids can grow into them, our study found that school uniforms are still being replaced, on average, every 10 months – the equivalent to one uniform for every school year.

Interestingly, despite some parents in the UK adopting a throwaway attitude to uniforms, the research did suggest that parents are more likely to donate their old clothes to charity shops than they are to purchase second-hand clothing. In fact, over half of parents donate uniforms to charity shops once they have been outgrown, suggesting that there is a disconnect between the number of people who want to give clothing a new life, and those that actually do.

WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY

Commenting on parents’ attitudes towards buying second-hand, Dr Jo Hemmings, Behavioural Psychologist, said: “There are a number of reasons why parents are reluctant to purchase second-hand uniforms for their children and continue to buy new year on year.

“Firstly, the word ‘second-hand’ has the connotation that somehow parents are not doing the best by their children. ‘Brand new’ has much more positive connotations. In addition to this, parents know that children can be very judgemental of each other in terms of clothing.

“In both instances, the parents’ attitudes towards second-hand clothing stem from their inherent sense of pride – a fear that people will assume that they can’t provide for their child effectively if they can’t dress them in a brand-new school uniform. This type of pride, which is primarily driven by other people’s opinions, is known as ‘hubristic pride’ and adds very little positive value to life.

“However, there is a second type of pride, ‘authentic pride’, which is centred around the fulfilment and achievements of yourself and those around you. This has a much more positive value and, importantly, cannot be achieved by wearing a new blazer. It can, however, be achieved by teaching children valuable lessons about the environment and the fact that the clothes they wear have no impact on their ability to ‘fit in’ or to be successful in life.”

STRETCHING THE LIFESPAN

With awareness of the environmental impact of our clothing growing, it is important for us all to consider how our attitudes towards the disposal and re-use of clothes could be affecting the planet. Clothing which has been cared for can and should be reused, and with a little help from a name tag, can become another child’s personalised piece.

Back to School – The Importance of Labelling

This year’s back to school, while long awaited, may also be the cause of some concern. How many measures against covid-19 will schools realistically be able to implement – will children respect social distancing? Will they bother sanitising when you know at times you struggle to make them wash their hands?

It will most certainly be a whole new experience for both you and your children. People have become increasingly aware of how quickly and easily germs can spread. With that in mind, we start to think about what exactly our children do that could be putting them at risk, and sharing items is at the top of the list. Stationery items children bring to school: pens, colouring pencils, rulers, calculators are amongst the most commonly shared items between children. But sharing is no longer caring, now it means circulating more germs.

Labelling your children’s things has always been useful to help reduce lost property, but now using name tags can help in another, more important way. Being easily able to identify one’s items will encourage children to keep to their own things and help reduce the spread of germs. They can be fun and colourful while also helping your children be safe.

This pandemic has bought with it a new perspective on things, it has made us aware of the places we really cannot go without visiting, the people we really need around us. Shown us how nice slowing down can be and how resourceful we are coming up with alternatives to make sure we can continue. Chances are that as a parent, you cannot wait for your children to go back to school but we cannot forget that we still need to be prudent and do the best we can to care for our parents, siblings, children, friends, neighbours and everyone around us. If something as simple as labelling things can help, do it!