Saturday, August 22, 2009

School Days

Going back to school is a crazy time here. Especially this year with three beginning school and one having a new school and schedule. Jonah started Gymnasium this year (5-12th grades). Here is a picture of him walking to school on his first day. His school begins at 7:30 and he is out most days by 1:15. (on really hot days he gets out by 11am because the school gets too hot and the teachers and kids can't get work done!)
Ashlyn and Caedon go up to the grade school around the corner. They begin at 7:50 (which I wish was the earlier beginning time since it takes just 5 minutes to walk and not 20, like Jonah) Here is a picture of Caedon at his desk on his first day.
We had to buy new notebooks and folders and workbooks for the big kids, but Caedon had to buy everything. Here is picture of his backpack. It is about the same size as a normal backpack, but hard and boxy. They also cost anywhere from $50 to over $200. The cheap ones probably wouldn't last the whole 4 years he will probably use it. We paid a whopping 89 euros for Caedon's. I am not sure what that is in dollars now but at least $120. (I am not above letting my child be different from the other children to be more economically frugal), but even a decent, normal backpack would be 50 euros and just wouldn't really work for his needs. The Germans want their kids to have the extra support and padding and they carry a lot in the backpacks. Caedon's backpack also came with a gym bag for his gym class and the "federtasche" for his pens, pencils and markers, and a bottle for drinks and a little container for his "second breakfast".

Here is a comparison shot of the various backpacks the kids carry. The first (left) is a cheap backpack that Jason or I would use (or the kids on a field trip), the middle is Caedon's new one and the third is Ashlyn's. We bought hers and Jonah's when they moved to the new school around the corner 3 years ago. I thought I was doing good buying them (1/2 price-88euros) but they are really more like what 4th-7th graders carry. Thankfully, Jonah and Ashlyn didn't care enough to complain or be upset. Ashlyn is finally carrying an "appropriate" backpack and Caedon has at least three classmates with the same backpack!

Jonah is going to have to rent a locker this year because his backpack is just too heavy for him to carry. He has small books, but also workbooks and folders and spiral notebooks and he is complaining how heavy it is.


Becky Dietz said...

WOW! $120 for a backpack?!? That is amazing!! Is that in line with the price of other things there? Is it something you need sent from the states next time---or would they stand out too much from the crowd? I know how important it is to fit in.

Deanna said...

Your boys look so big! And I remember the backpack sticker shock! Looks like you guys are doing good! Miss y'all.