It's true that the sea of caps and gowns made me feel a little nostalgic, but it mostly made me excited to start school again. Which then got me thinking about the last time I was a beneficiary of the British education system:
This is the school I went to for 3rd and 4th grade. As you can see, I was quite the fashion maven in the mandatory plaid shift dress and matching polyester jumper. (The fluorescent green fanny pack was optional and my own fantastically successful attempt at accessorizing, thank you very much.)
But wait, there's more!
Here we are wearing the mandatory blazer with the embroidered school logo on the breast pocket, the mandatory straw boater (replaced by a mandatory black felt bowler in the winter months), the mandatory white knee-highs and Mary Janes, and my absolute favorite mandatory accessory: the black patent leather briefcase (which replaced the brown leather satchel that was mandatory in Form 2).
And to accompany the mandatory uniform, mandatory report cards at the end of every term:
- Nine-year-olds being graded on elocution. As you can see (if you click to enlarge), I had "great enthusiasm for verse and learn[ed] and perform[ed] [my] recitations with confidence." To bad entertaining a crowd with ease didn't stick. I could be a rich woman.
- In music class, I made "very pleasing progress with [my] recorder." This is because I was a proud member of the recorder club. We blew. In a good way...
- My "unexpected and disappoint[ing]" maths score was prophetic.
- My "uninhibited gusto" in art made me lose ten house points later that year when I went a little "gusto" with the papier-mache paste. Totally worth it though.
- And the best news: I got my highest marks in history (96%). Hopefully my penchant to "participate freely and spontaneously in class" serves me well come this September...