Spot the Year 6 leavers!

Over the next few weeks, Year 6 leavers all over country are going to have a look around their new high schools and will be finding out what they will be studying next year. Most of them will be approaching the experience with a unique combination of terror and excitement. Their parents, meanwhile, are misty eyed and reflective. It’s interesting to observe children as they approach the end of Year 6. Most of them have clearly outgrown their old school and are ready to move on. They strain at the leash of primary school and probably get on the teacher’s nerves. This is a perfectly normal rite of passage.


Year 6 Leavers

Typical Year 6 leavers behaviour

They may find some of the rules, which are in place to protect younger members of the school population, a bit suffocating. They are learning to behave like adults and want to be treated as adults. Of course, that is not always possible in a primary school environment. Nevertheless, I think there is something to be said for allowing Year 6 leavers to take on more responsibility. In return they can be awarded privileges.

I also feel that they deserve an explanation if they are asked to do something or asked not to do something. It is a courtesy that we would afford our fellow adults and is one that should be extended to them whenever possible.

Year 6 children can be very articulate and deserve to be listened to. Although I accept that this needs to be within the respectful confines of a teacher-pupil relationship! They are able to put together a coherent argument. We are raising a generation of critical thinkers and that, I’m afraid, will mean that we come in for criticism as well. We need to teach them how to level that criticism appropriately through the correct channels.

Spot the Year 6 kid!

It’s also easy to spot the Year 6 leavers from their uniform! If mandatory school uniform is in place in your school it is not unusual for Year 6s to ‘experiment’ with what they can get away with. They have been wearing that uniform for the last 6 years. They are probably fed up!

At the same time, you have parents like me, who have their last child leaving primary and have no intention of buying new uniform at this time of year. Especially with the expense of a whole new high school uniform just a few weeks away. Threadbare sweatshirts are retrieved from the bottom of wardrobes. You mutter ‘it’ll do’ as you cram them into a pair of school trousers that they outgrew several months ago. Roll on the summer when the whole lot can be thrown away!

I’d love to hear about your Year 6 experiences!



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  19 comments for “Spot the Year 6 leavers!

  1. June 30, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    I love year 6, it’s such a special time. And, like you, I’m that misty-eyed parent preparing for my very last child to leave primary school. Our school is very good at giving year 6s extra privileges and treating them more like grown ups. I know it annoys my daughter’s teacher that they spend all year helping them to be adults, then they go to secondary school and get treated like babies for a year!
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  2. Karen, the next best thing to mummy
    June 30, 2017 at 6:06 pm

    When my youngest son was leaving year 6 he asked if I would print him a T-shirt saying I hate and the name of the head mistress, I didn’t, but did agree that she wasn’t the nicest of people!

  3. July 4, 2017 at 9:31 am

    Parents become more watchful when their kids leave year 6. It is a time to develop the child. I don’t have any special memory to share. However, I enjoyed reading your post and the comments here.

  4. July 4, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Haha so true Sharon! As a teacher it’s always the year 6 who are so annoying at the end of the school year!! With their too small blazer…#tweensteensbeyond

  5. July 4, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    There was a big leap between year 6 and year 7. Good luck with the transition
    Tubbs recently posted…Doing Small Things With Great KindnessMy Profile

  6. July 4, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    So help this American out – Year 6 is the equivalent of 6th grade here? So in the US we usually have elementary school from K-5th grade, then middle school (also called Jr High) from 6-8th grade, and then high school from 9-12th grade. But you just have primary then high?

    I’m going to feel so culturally enlightened once I know!


    • E
      July 8, 2017 at 8:10 am

      Year 6 is grade 5. No middle schools in the UK you go straight to high school.

    • July 8, 2017 at 2:15 pm

      Yep it’s primary from age 5-11 years and then high school! That’s enough transition for me! xx

  7. July 5, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Ha ha love the whole spot a year 6 leaver? Their uniform is the clear giveaway – trousers too short, blazers too small, dresses way too short. I always marvel at just how grown up they look as a year 6 leaver one day but then so young the next as they step into their year 7 senior uniform and become the youngest in the school again. #TweensTeensBeyond
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  8. July 5, 2017 at 10:35 am

    Oh my! Year 6 seems such a long while ago. My youngest went to a tiny village school, barely a dozen kids each year, and due to secondary catchment areas after year 6 they went their separate ways to 3 or 4 different schools, so the end of year 6 was always over-emotional with floods of tears. #tweensteensbeyond
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  9. July 5, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    Ahh my year 6 complained that her teacher was far too strict and not nice enough when she pointed out improvements she could make in her work. I told her it was all part of the process of getting her ready for secondary school, and it really was. Whilst secondary teachers are interesting and inspiring to year 7 students, they don’t have time to coax them and be soft on them. And yes, she was starting to push the boundaries – she was definitely ready to leave!
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  10. July 5, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    year 6 is a very distant memory for me, i’m collecting my youngest from school tomorrow for his last ever day #tweensteensbeyond
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  11. July 6, 2017 at 10:18 am

    Year 6 is a distant memory for me too. One in year 12 and one in year 10. Both my two were very happy to leave year 6, they were bored and ready to move onto something that was going to stretch and challenge them. I was more emotional than them that’s for sure. I’d done ten years of standing on the playground, being a member of the PTA and making what have become very good friends. We’re busy on the university open days trail at the moment, which I’m finding VERY scary lol! #TweensTeensBeyond
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  12. July 6, 2017 at 10:53 am

    Aaaw year 6 is such a special place. It’s where you begin grow up I think ,being comfortable in your surroundings means you feel able to experiment a bit like with clothes as you say before off on the next adventure at high school #tweensteensbeyond
    daydreams of a mum recently posted…We ❤ Wimbledon – but it turns us a bit nuts!!My Profile

  13. July 6, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    My eldest is just about to go into year 6 but I taught year 6 last year, so am all too familiar with the little darlings. I loved teaching them though as you can talk to them more like adults and have jokes with them without them careering out of control like the younger children.
    I think generally they’re all ready to move on by this time of year, and start their new journey where they’ll go from being the big kids to the little fish in two months. It’s a special time of their lives though when they’re top of the world. #TweensTeensBeyond
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  14. July 6, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    I am experiencing this for the first time and god are they ready. Party season is in full swing, induction days enjoyed, parent meetings had and well less two weeks to go. Last one out turns the lights off! There will be tears #tweensteensbeyond

  15. July 7, 2017 at 11:13 am

    Such a turning point in their young lives and that of the parents. I still have both my teens’ uniforms from when they first started at primary and the shirt/dress they were wearing on the day they left covered in scribbles from their mates. I love spotting the leavers across the country and even abroad wearing their “year of …” hoodies! Hope all goes smoothly in your household Sharon. #TweensTeensBeyond
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  16. July 7, 2017 at 11:39 am

    Yes- all of the above!! My eldest is a year 6 leaver and she is taking it all in her stride! She is sooooo ready! Luckily, she is going to the same school as most of her friends, though the school is HUGE compared to their current school, it doesn’t seem to be phasing her! Me on the other hand……… complete…..emotional…….wreck!! And we’ve still got the leavers party, year 6 production and leavers assembly to get through- I’m welling up just writing this!! I really need to pull myself together!! #TweensTeensBeyond
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  17. July 13, 2017 at 11:35 am

    We have all of this next year, although we have done a few school tours already and the talk has started. I will have to pin this for next year to remind me about! I am not ready for secondary school although my tweenager is, I think.
    Sorry this is a bit late to #tweensteensbeyond. Just had a knee op so I am catching up!

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