Excitement, nerves as parents and first-timers tackle first day of school

2017-01-11 13:00
Clementine Mbatani with son Simphiwe stand at the entrance of Camps Bay Preparatory School for first day of school. (Isabelle Coetzee, News24)

Clementine Mbatani with son Simphiwe stand at the entrance of Camps Bay Preparatory School for first day of school. (Isabelle Coetzee, News24)

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Cape Town - Children ran circles around their parents and excitedly greeted their friends before the start of the first day of school on Wednesday morning.

- Parent24: Back to school

Having briefly taken a break from running about, Ella Walker, who started her first day of Grade 1 at Camps Bay Preparatory School, said that she's very excited about her new uniform.

"I tried it on the other day and I showed my whole family," she said with a smile.

Her parents Clinton and Robyn Walker said she modelled the uniform for all their relatives at home.

A few metres behind the family Bec Scales sat on a bench with her twin daughters Okuhle and Buhle, who also started Grade 1.

"They are in different classes this year but their friends are also here so they won't be alone," said Scales, smiling at both girls who were excited to see their friends and to meet their new teachers.

PICS: Back to school

Friendly faces

Across from them on another bench, Carey Main comforted her daughter Tayla who was nervous about her first day at a new school.

"It's her first day here so she's feeling a bit shy," Main told News24 as she held Tayla's hand.

She moved from St Cyprians to start her Grade 2 year at Camps Bay Preparatory School.

To her mother's relief, Tayla's face suddenly lit up as she recognised her friend, Skye.

At the front gate Simphiwe Mbatani stood under a "welcome" sign with his mom Clementine, ready for the day ahead.

Simphiwe was excited to meet his new teacher and said he plans to become a dentist one day.

"I want to fix teeth," he said with a shy grin before running off to greet his friends and their parents.

Not so excited

Shane Haupt, who starts Grade 2 on Wednesday, stood by the entrance to help direct his peers to where the rest of the class stood lined-up.

He confidently introduced himself and told News24 that his favourite subject is maths and that he wants to be a rugby player one day.

When he couldn't remember his favourite player's name, his father Colin Haupt whispered in his ear and he announced that it is Willie le Roux.

Less excited was Jody Kensley, who is also starting Grade 2 but is not looking forward to her maths classes.

"The thing is that they give me the hard sums," she said as she looked up at her parents, Lauren and Arthur Kensley.

They reassured her and encouraged her to ask questions when she did not understand.

Principal Linda Murray said the children would spend Wednesday getting to know their new teachers.

"The Grade R students from last year are moving to the main building for Grade 1, so they just need to adjust to the change and, for example, learn where the bathrooms are and so on," she said.

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