THE bags are packed, the uniforms are laid out and the butterflies are running wild – yes, it’s back to school time.
But it’s no ordinary back to school day – for thousands of little locals, it marks the start of their first day in kindergarten, or “big school” as many of them call it.
Little Eve Daly has been counting down the days until she walks through the gates of Tamworth Public School tomorrow morning.
“Two more sleeps,” she beamed when The Leader met her.
Most students head into the classroom today to start the start the schooling year, but it’s a staggered start for many kindergarten students this week, depending on which school they will attend.
And while there are always tears on the first day, it won’t just be a few nervous children.
Rather it’s an emotional time for mum and dad who farewell their little ones into the classroom.
Just ask Eve’s mother, Nadine Daly.
“She’s more excited than her mother,” Mrs Daly joked.
“You’re excited for them but I think for me it’s the end of that chapter of our lives. I look forward to my two days off with her but now it’s going to be different.”
Making things a little easier is the group of friends that all have children starting in kindergarten this year, too.
“It’s reassuring there are lots of other kids we know,” Mrs Daly said.
“I think she will be excited and overwhelmed a bit too that it’s every day now.”
Like many other five-year-olds, Eve has found out her teacher’s name, and even an older buddy to show her the ropes of school life.
There have been orientation and come-and-try days so it’s not so daunting on the big day.
While many children are giving their lunch orders to mum and dad, and what colour they want their books covered in, for the new kids on the block, it’s a whole new world.
And the things Eve is most looking forward to at school?
“Colouring in ... eating outside ... and playing,” she said.