Lockdown lessons and back to school for teens and tweens

Smiling Black teen boy on busHello and welcome back, dear readers. The summer is close to over and it’s time for the school bells to start ringing out again across the UK. In fact in some areas it’s already back to school time. I’m sure I’m not alone in looking forward to that moment when our tweens and teens can receive proper classroom education again. It is after all a milestone that has for a long period now, seemed unreachable.

Lockdown Lessons

With lockdown finally behind us and the subsequent easing of restrictive measures it has been wonderful, however tentatively, to start moving forward into this brave new world.

There is no doubt that lockdown threw up many challenges for everyone, but equally there have been many positive stories emerging of valuable personal and family experiences.

In my post Midlife Moments – A Personal Reflection Post Lockdown, I look back on how the lockdown impacted our family and how we coped both individually and as a family unit.  I also share some thoughts on the journey ahead as we all start to slowly emerge from lockdown and embrace the new measures and guidelines that will keep us and our families safe over the months’ ahead.

Nikki at Midlife Chic in her post Slowly Moving Out of Lockdown shares a number of first-time post-lockdown experiences. This includes a reunion with dear friends, going out to a restaurant again for the first time, as well as shopping with her teenage son as he prepares to head off to University full of hopes and dreams for his first term as a fresher.

Liberty as always leads the way with an irreverent and light-hearted review of how her family responded to lockdown in her post During Lockdown We Did Things We Have Never Done Before. From building a fire pit and toasting marshmallows, to foraging for food and partaking in a daily word challenge with their extended family, the list is exhaustive. So if you are short of ideas for keeping your tweens and teens busy in the event of another lockdown, Liberty has all the answers.

Moving forward with teens after lockdown

Speculation over exam results has been a hot topic in August, but with the A level and GCSE results now out, the anxiety of many parents and their teens has only increased, with an algorithm blamed for many downgrades which have thrown teens throughout the country into an impossible situation with their sixth form and university applications.

What A levels will mean in 2020

Sarah at Mum of Three World speculates in her post Will GCSE and A level results in 2020 mean anything on the value of the results from this summer.  I have not been in this situation myself this year but have listened to many friends and family lamenting the woes of their teens. They’ve been concerned about not taking their exams and missing out on so many valuable milestone moments, but also the inevitable question mark that will linger in university or future employers’ minds over the credibility of a 2020 exam certificate.

On BritMums, you can read their piece: A Levels – What a shambles!

In a similar vein, Helen at Actually Mummy has shared some wonderful advice in partnership with The Education Hotel for those who received their A level results and the options open to them in her post A level results 2020 – next steps.  Even if your teen is not in this group this year, there are some useful guidelines which can be taken on board for those next year – my daughter included.

Starting university in 2020

In a second post Helen follows with some practical tips for those heading off to university this year with the input of her friend’s daughter. University life will be different for sure and my eldest is hesitant about his final year, but if your teen is one of those moving onto the next stage do read her post Tips for Starting University.

Is it safe to send kids back to school?

On the subject of going back to school, Sally at Who’s The Mummy asks the question on many of minds Is It Safe To Send Kids Back To School? We might fall into the category of those championing the return to school not only for the educational benefit of our teens but also in getting the country moving again. But there is no denying that we all worry whether it is actually safe. There are no 100% guarantees and first steps are always difficult. Sally shares her daughter Flea’s experience of going back and her thoughts on how to help our teens navigate this new educational world.

How are you handling back to school with teens & tweens?

Whether you have enjoyed a staycation or ventured further afield I hope that you have all had an enjoyable summer vacation and are now ready to embrace a return to school and work. It is difficult to know what lays ahead but small steps are a good place to start.  

Thank you to everyone who contributed posts for this round-up and please do remember to email [email protected] with any new posts for the next one, particularly of how your teens and tweens coped with the return to school.

Until next time.

Jo x


Back to school tips for teens & tweens

Back to school tips for happy kids

Parenting in a pandemic

Managing technology, teaching and tantrums


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About Joanne Gray

Jo is a freelance writer and blogger at Mother of Teenagers. Previously a PR consultant for 20 years, Jo lives with her husband and two teens in London, whilst harboring a desire to return to the coast . Jo’s blog is a glimpse at the reality of parenting during the secondary school years and beyond, as well as comment and opinion on the issues and challenges teenagers face growing up. Jo also enjoys writing about a range of topics related to midlife and her own experiences of this secondary life stage. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @motherofteensuk.

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