Every parent remembers the first time they drop their child at their first day of 'big' school, especially if this event is met with floods of tears from your little person as they enter the big wide world of learning.
Even more poignant perhaps is the feeling you get when you see them heading off to write their final exams on their last day of high school.
The memories of school lunches, parent-teacher meetings, endless assemblies or fundraisers create a bittersweet emotion as you realise this could herald the end of your chance to influence their lives in a positive way.
Our concerns as parents are often the fact that we may not have done enough to teach our children resilience and strength to help them conquer and thrive in this changing world. Knowing they can enter a profession or line of work that gives them satisfaction and contentment, is often down to how we react to their passions as they are growing up.
Teaching children to become resilient and to lead others is something that must be done both at home and in the classroom. The influence of a particularly dedicated teacher can instill confidence and the will to learn. It is also true that the playground can be the greatest teacher of all.
As our children grow and learn to interact with humans other than those in their family, the learn life-long skills that will carry them through to their working life simply by being allowed to express themselves each day at play or in some creative way.
Leading teacher and educationalist Ken Robinson said schools needed to create environments where every person was inspired to grow creatively. His best-selling book, The Element: how finding your passion changes everything, discusses how children should have the chance at school to do what they should be doing. As a parent, we can allow our children to find their passion and joy during their schooling and not try to mould them into what we would like them to become.
Perhaps this will create a generation of children who leave school with a better idea of what it is they love to do and how to achieve some meaningful work in that field.
Parental encouragement plays a crucial role in successful students and we need to support them in all their activities.
While the constant drudgery for a parent may be the many encouraging words shouted at freezing cold team sport matches, or staying awake through a concert recital at which your child is the last to perform, all of it becomes worthwhile when we see them enter the big wide world with a positive attitude and the will to learn more and go on to be better parents themselves.