My daughter starts fifth grade in two weeks. I remember when we were walking her to school in Kindergarten, and I saw the fifth graders walking on their own. “Mom,” she asked, “Can I walk to school without you?” I promised her when she got to fifth grade, I would let her. Now, I am not so sure. She’s still that little kindergartener in my eyes.
But she’s not that little girl. She’s grown into a responsible, intelligent pre-teen and I need to remember that. These are the five things I want my daughter to know before she starts fifth grade.
Five Things Girls Need To Know Before Fifth Grade
1. Follow your gut. We’ve spent the last ten years working on your intuition. Trying to teach you right from wrong, and good from bad. I am not saying your gut is always going to lead you in the right direction (sometimes mine is wrong even now, and I am a grown up) but your gut should be ready to start guiding you in the right direction, now.
2. You can be smart and beautiful at the same time. Fifth grade is confusing in a lot of ways, and things can get clique-ish. Jocks hanging with other jocks nerds hanging with other nerds, etc. But know this– the most successful people in life are the people who can fit into more than one group of people at the same time. So, be yourself and I bet you will find you have a little bit of everything going on in there.
3. Be nice. I have said this before, and I will say it again and again, but being nice to others is kind of the cornerstone of being a good person. It isn’t always easy, and sometimes it goes against what everyone else is doing, but I bet if you listen to your gut, it will already be telling you to be nice, anyway.
4. Don’t be a doormat. This is hard one because I am telling you to be nice, and I am telling you to follow your gut, but I also want you to stand up for yourself. I don’t mean to punch someone else in the face or anything, I just mean don’t get taken advantage of. Be strong and remember that you matter.
5. Parents and teachers aren’t as uncool as you think they are. Okay, I know this one is probably already falling on deaf ears, but if you can just take the time to LISTEN to your parents, your teachers, and other grown ups when they have advice to give– they might say something important! Remember, they were once fifth graders, too. Oh, and they made it out alive, so they probably know a thing or two about how to get through whatever it is you’re going through.
Fifth grade is a tough year, but it’s also a lot of fun. You get more responsibility, and you get to be yourself. But, I just don’t know if you get to walk to school on your own, yet. 🙂