It might be Sophie Richardson's first week at Newlyn Primary School but the prep pupil already has a long history at the country school.
Sophie, 6, is the fourth generation of the Richardson clan to attend the school following in the direct footsteps of her dad Kain, grandfather Roger and and great-grandfather Howard along with many other relatives.
"We came here in the mid-1800s and have been here ever since, still farming some of the original land," said Mr Richardson, who produces potatoes and prime lamb on the family farm.
Mr Richardson was a pupil from 1985 to 1989 and said not much had changed apart from an extension and a new portable in the yard.
"Everyone was good friends and we all got along well and class time was always fun because it wasn't overdone with heaps of people," he said.
"We had a great childhood around here, trying to learn, spending a fair bit of time playing cricket and footy on the oval out the front, and as trucks went past on the highway we tried to get them to toot their horn."
The children still try to get the trucks to toot their horns today.
Mr Richardson still farms with his father and said Sophie and her grandad would probably start "sharing school stories now they've got something to share".
Before starting school, Sophie said she was most looking forward to playing with the school animals. The children care for guinea pigs and chickens, have a business selling eggs in the local community, and there will soon be the addition of sheep to the school menagerie courtesy of the Richardsons.
And in the coming years Sophie's younger siblings Oliver, 4, and Harry, 1, will also continue the family tradition and start school at Newlyn.
Principal Samantha Vella said most of the 14 children currently enrolled at the school had younger siblings, which provided a healthy outlook for the school's future. The local playgroup, also held at the school, is also growing.
Sophie is one of three prep students starting this year, with the other two already having siblings at school.
Ms Vella said it was as important to mark family history with the school as it was to provide a warm welcome for new families.
"When we first spoke to Kain we didn't realise how long the history was ... then we we noticed there were Richardsons on our honour boards who are probably Sophie's great aunts and uncles," she said.
"They are the second local farming family to come back to the school in the time I've been here.
"It makes a really big difference for people in the community to see that Newlyn is not just a little country school, we've got lots of big ideas to offer."
IN OTHER NEWS
The three school starters have all been involved in class activities throughout term four last year, even managing some remote learning with the school, and in regular years the prep transition program starts halfway through the year so when they finally start school it's second nature.
But many have already grown up around the school.
"Because we are a small school we only operate with adult volunteers. Our families do all our mowing and maintenance to the kids have already popped in to the classroom since they were two or three while mum was on the mower on the oval," Ms Vella said.
"That's the advantage of being part of the school community long before most children get that opportunity."
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