Back to School 2021

I’m writing this in the middle of August, when teachers, other school staff and children are enjoying their summer break.

After the Lockdowns and endless restrictions, they can finally meet with friends and relax for a few weeks. They certainly won’t want to be thinking about September yet, but I can’t wait!!

After 18 months of being confined to Hattie HQ I’ll be visiting primary schools again, and I’ve already got 7 visits booked in September / October… Woo-Hoo! I can’t wait to see all those little faces again and inspire their creativity.

2020/21 feels like a lost year in a lot of ways but it’s also brought new opportunities for me. I’ve spent a lot of time promoting my books on social media and I’ve connected with some wonderful people. I’ve been invited to take part in interviews, record podcasts, and write blogs for a variety of groups and organisations.

I’ve always thought that ‘Hattie and friends’ would make a great TV Programme, so I’ve also been researching Animation ideas. I submitted my first Arts Council England Funding Application to support this new and exciting work. I’ve recently found out that, unfortunately my application has been unsuccessful, this time. There are so many wonderful applications, only 1 in 4 was successful in this Round. Well, I’m not one to give up so I’m working on my next application which will be submitted in September! We definitely need to see more disability inclusion on Children’s TV.

Without a break from ‘normal’ life these projects would never have happened.

I’ve found a lovely community of helpful and supportive Educators, particularly on Twitter. (I’m still trying to figure out Instagram!) Some have become friends, which has been very welcome because my dog’s a lovely companion, but he doesn’t have much conversation!

If you’re on Twitter come and say ‘Hello’, I’m @Hattiesfriends.

The first week in September is always an exciting time if you have any connection with Education.  It’s a new beginning, as children move up to their new class, bringing excitement, anticipation, and some apprehension with them. Teachers, rested from a well-deserved break, are full of enthusiasm for the year ahead. What will this new year bring?

We’ve all learnt new skills, dealt with changes in how we work, last minute cancellations, disappointment, and isolation. We’ve picked each other up when it’s been too difficult. All these experiences have made us stronger and more resilient, able to face the next challenges together.

I’m full of hope for the year ahead and grateful for the positives from the last one.