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What footwear does my child need for starting school?

July 18, 2019

This is a partnership post

When it comes to planning purchasing school uniform for your child starting school. It can be easy to get caught up in the ‘how many polo shirts, trousers etc. will they need?’. As well as the do I need to buy the school jumpers, book bag etc from the school supplier or can I purchase these elsewhere. However, there is something that often gets overlooked in this planning process… School footwear!

Just as you do at home, children are likely to have a couple of pairs of shoes, wellies etc. depending on what activity they are going to be doing that given day. Well, school is just the same. They won’t just be sitting in a classroom all day, writing lines from a chalkboard (do school still have chalkboards? or has it all gone to whiteboards and a digital version?). Children will be learning in a variety of different ways and they will need the right footwear to correspond.

Take a look at the key school footwear your child will need for starting school…

A group of people playing frisbee in a park

These shoes were made for walking, running and everything in between

If you think about the footwear that your child wears now whilst you are at home or out and about on family adventures. Think about all the different activities they get up wearing said footwear. Now, I can imagine the stress and strain that that footwear undergoes each day. So finding the right pair of school shoes is so important.

Finding the style of shoe, material and fastening that matches your child – which is why there are so many different school shoes available to buy. Generally speaking, schools request black shoes for school so that at least takes away one decision for you to make. Take the time to think about the things that they will be doing when wearing these shoes. From being in the classroom, walking (running) around the school, playing in the playground at break and lunchtimes, as well as going on trips and let’s face it climbing on whatever they possibly can!

Look out for hard-wearing soles with a good tread (grip) and depending on your child possibly an additional protective toe area if they are prone to scuffing shoes (football, climbing, falling over etc). How easy shoes are able to be put on and taken off is another consideration. Selecting something that is easy to fasten – possibly staying away from laces until they are confident with tying laces and getting changed for PE etc.

Above all of this, is the important factor of them being comfortable, They are going to be wearing them for a long time each day and if you think about wearing shoes that pinch in all the wrong places you wouldn’t want to wear them either. Get them to wear them around the house for a week or so before school starts so they are ‘worn in’ and are used to them.

A group of people playing football on a field

Let’s get active!

Physical education is part and parcel of the school curriculum, so whether you have a sporting superstar on your hands or a reluctant ball thrower. Your child will be asked to take part in various different activities across the school year. Whilst PE has changed from the school days that we might remember. It is all about having fun and joining in, which of course, is made easier if they have the correct footwear for the activity at hand.

Plimsolls are usually the go-to footwear for all indoor activities taken part in the school hall or gym. These offer a stable platform for running, jumping and climbing, whilst giving grip against the wooden floors (also not leaving marks on said floors which the cleaners will thank you for).

Depending on your child’s school and the range of activities that they offer, you might also need to provide a pair of trainers for outdoor activities. Taking part in athletics, football and tennis etc on the school field or multi-activity area outdoors. For the first year or two, you might want to consider selecting trainers with a hook n loop fastening rather than laces so that they are easier for them to pop on and off by themselves – plus they don’t have to worry about laces coming undone whilst completing sports activities.

A man that is standing in the water

Puddle jumping and forest walking

Rain doesn’t stop play for children, and why should it? It’s a great opportunity to discover puddles (plus those of the muddy variety), singing in the rain and just having fun with the added wetness factor. Having a pair of wellies available at school for them to slip on whenever the weather decides to turn, allows them to get outdoors, get some fresh air and burn off some energy.

Not forgetting about Forest School and day trips that they may be taking throughout the year. Walking through woodlands, building dens and getting close to nature. Learning outdoors is just as important as learning in a classroom so it’s important that they have the right footwear to allow them to complete these activities as much as possible.

recap on the footwear needed for starting school

  • School shoes – strong, sturdy, comfortable and easy to fasten
  • Plimsolls – a good all-round sturdy platform for completing sports
  • Trainers (optional) – outdoor sports footwear, providing a sturdier platform for athletics and sports
  • Wellington boots – easy to pull on for outdoor wet play and attending forest school, day trips etc.

With the right footwear, your child can walk, run and play their way through the school day. Partnered with their school uniform they are all set for the start of their educational journey.

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