Friday, 15 August 2014

Word of the Week - Preparation

Posted by Rosie

 

preparation

ˌprɛpəˈreɪʃ(ə)n/
noun

The action or process of preparing or being prepared for use or consideration.

As we move towards the second half of August the return to school known in France as La Rentrée draws ever closer.  And with La Rentrée comes preparations for school.  In France pupils have to supply their own exercise books and many other things including art materials, pens etc, file paper, folders, plastic pockets ... and so the list goes on.  At the end of the summer term a list is sent home and parents are giving the onerous task of gathering together all the supplies.  Yes, I can see anyone with school-age children in France quivering slightly at this point and fully understanding what this involves!

It is something I absolutely dread because there are so many variations on each item yet each teacher seems to ask for a specific thing, slightly different from the next.  Take A4 exercise books.  The lists that Ben and Tom have asks for 4 different types:

  • A4, 96 pages, small squares, not spiral bound
  • A4, 96 pages, large squares, not spiral bound
  • 24/32, 96 pages, small squares, not spiral bound*
  • 24/32, 96 pages, large squares, not spiral bound*

* These are slightly larger than standard A4 and are apparently preferred by teachers who get their pupils to stick lots of A4 sheets into their books.

The shops however also supply exercise books with different numbers of pages and spiral bound and A5 and  plain .... and we poor parents have to trawl through them all to find the right ones.  Oh and then you have to try and work out if it is cheaper to buy multipacks or a different make and not forget that you need to buy the right number of protective covers to fit the number of different sized books you are asked to buy!!!

Oh and don't get me going on file paper (Feuilles).  The boys have been asked to get:


  • Feuilles simples A4 large squares
  • Feuilles simples A4 small squares
  • Feuilles doubles A4 large squares
  • Feuilles doubles A4 small squares
  • Feuilles simples A5 large squares


Ahhhhhhh!!!

So this week I have been trying to pin down the boys to go through what they have left over from last year before bravely heading to the shops to stock up on everything new they need.  I may have been making preparations for La Rentrée but I reckon my word of the week could just have easily have been stressed or exasperated or confused or broke!

Translation:

Mum - "There we go!  I don't think we've forgotten anything!"
Boy  - "Yes! A giant school bag to store this lot in!"


If you are you in the midst of preparations for the return to the school, how's it going?

THe Mad House

22 comments :

  1. I don't envy you having to buy all that squared paper. Whenever I see it, it reminds me of France.

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    1. It's a nightmare but it is now all done but for one book I forgot #phew. Now we can enjoy the last 2 weeks of the holidays without this hanging over us!

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  2. I think that would drive me to distraction, but once you've got it all sorted (good luck with pinning down the boys) imagine how satisfying it'll be? Good luck!

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    1. 'Tis done (but for one book I forget) and yes it is very satisfying ... especially as I usually leave it to the last 2 days of the holidays!

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  3. Glad it's all done now lovely *and breathe*!! #WotW

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    1. So am I - it is usually something I leave to the last minute which adds even more the the stress! Not this year :)

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  4. I used to love all the stationery in the shops at this time of year in Italy and France. We didn't need to take any to school, but I couldn't resist all the matching pencil cases, notebooks and folders. They always had a bigger range than in England. I can imagine its a pain to resource, but you have brought back lovely memories.

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    1. They certainly have a fantastic range here but of course that makes the job so much harder for us poor parents!!

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  5. Wow that is a lot of things to buy! Preparation was my word too :-) hope you enjoy the rest of the holidays x #WotW

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    1. It is nice having the 2 last weeks of the holidays without this hanging over us! School clothes have also been bought so I am feeling very organised. Great minds, of course, come up with the same word of the week :)

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  6. Oh wow thats so specific! Would drive me mental! #WotW

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    1. It drives me mental LOL. So glad I have got it out of the way.

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  7. Blimey, sounds like a seriously complicated list of things needed! That would leave me seriously confused!! Xx #wotw

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    1. It certainly confused me last year when I first did the more complicated secondary school list ... at least this year I sort of knew what to expect, but it still took me an age to get it all.

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  8. That is a lot, and complicated, too! I do love my stationery purchasing, but I suspect this'd take the fun out of it! Good luck x Thanks for sharing with #WotW

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    1. I usually love buying stationary too but this is just so hard. It would be much easier if the teachers all got together and standardised things. I also know of some schools that buy the stuff for you and you pay for it, but at a reduced price as they can bulk buy ... sadly that does not include the school the boys go to!

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  9. That is a lot to buy.....I think I would be very confused....Takes me all my time to buy uniform and shoes never mind paper and exercise books....lol

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    1. I was very confused last year but it was slightly less confusing this year as I knew there were so many different forms of everything so I was slightly prepared. Finding the right things was still hard though! So glad it's done.

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  10. Hi,
    Just wondered if you would mind me sharing your blog on our fb page for Blackhen Education? And could we share it on our blog site as a 'guest' blog?

    Blackhen Education is a small educational company offering online English courses for English speaking children living in France.
    www.blackheneducation.com

    Many thanks,

    Sue

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    1. Of course Sue, feel free to share and put up as as guest post. I would always be happy to do further guests post too.

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  11. Ha ha, just discovered this post through back to school linky and have added my bit - a post I wrote last year, all about the infernal "liste des fournitures"!! I'm happy to announce that lycée seems a tiny bit more relaxed (but I still have 6 more years before 2nd son is in lycée!!) http://www.loumessugo.com/en/blog/entry/september-c-est-la-rentree

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    1. LOL. It really is madness isn't it? I also have 3 subjects where the teachers will only give their requirements when the boys are back at school so I am not done yet!

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I love receiving comments and I do read every one but if you are simply here to spam me with a link, guess what ... I won't publish it.