Belfast Telegraph

Ten school facts with Lidl

South Korean students put in up to 16-hour school days, Einstein was a high school drop out and Wolverine was once a teacher! In association with Lidl, we bring you ten ‘did you know’ school facts as your #lidlgenius prepares for the new academic year...

From pencils to protractors and savvy satchels your back to school needs start from just 99p at Lidl Northern Ireland.

Perfect timing

Around the world the academic year and school day vary greatly with South Korea holding the top spot for the longest learning hours. Some school children begin their day of learning at 8am and finish at 4pm with many secondary school children putting in up to 16 hours a day!

Age appropriate

Northern Ireland has one of the youngest school starting ages in the world with primary ones beginning their school year as young as four years’ old. Many schools in Scandinavia take children in at seven years of age but a lot of these children have already gone to pre-school style setups prior to that.

What’s the hurry?

According to some papers the UK determined five as the school starting age not based on achieving a better educational outcome but rather getting children with “unhealthy home lives” into a secure scheduled setup and to “appease employers because setting an early starting age enabled an early school leaving age to be established, so that children could enter the workforce” according to the National Foundation for Educational Research.

Free for all

Up until 1870 education was either paid for or hosted by a select few voluntary establishments in the UK but in 1870 The Education Act marked the first time funding was put forward by the Government. By 1880 education became compulsory until the age of 10 but many children still worked. It was only in 1944 when secondary education was funded.


Homework has become a topic of debate with educational professionals around the world. Evidence would suggest that the amount of time spent on homework per week has little relevance to an education system’s performance. League tables often show that those countries that spend less time on homework actually rank higher. Finland, for example spends just 2.4 hours per week on homework and ranks fifth in the world’s best performing schools however Russian students are putting in up to ten hours per week at home yet the country ranks 13th. In the UK students, on average, spend almost five hours on homework per week and rank sixth in the league according to

It’s a girl thing. Or a boy thing.

We’ve heard it many times “girls are smarter” or “boys aren’t as quick on the uptake” but both ring true and we can thank brain makeup and development for that. According to studies brain scans show differences in the male and female brain with more areas of girls’ brains, including the cerebral cortex - the part that looks after memory, attention, thought and language - are dedicated to verbal functions while the hippocampus - the area that works with verbal memory story - develops earlier in girls. In boys’ brains, however, a bigger part of the cerebral cortex is devoted to spatial and mechanical works making your little man better with movement and pictures rather than just words.

Celebrity Mr and Mrs

Some of the world’s biggest performers were once leading classrooms around the world. Hugh Jackman, Sheryl Crowe and Art Garfunkel were once PE, Music and Maths teachers respectively!

Lunch time

There are many theories surrounding the lunch time meal. Many theorists say it was an accidental result of the industrial revolution when regulated working hours meant labourers required a midday snack having put in a hefty six hours by noon. The fourth Earl of Sandwich - the founder of humble sarnie - created the sandwich as a, literally, handy evening snack that could be eaten in one hand to prevent mess while playing card games. Today the UK’s favourite sandwich is chicken salad.

Bag a bargain with Lidl’s sleek stationery collection

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From streetwise back packs to branded colours and everything in between Lidl is the perfect pit stop for all your back to school needs.

Write up your street

Pencil case essentials begin from 99p with the ultimate 26-piece writing kit (containing erasers, sharpener, varied pens, rulers and pencils) costing just £4.99.

30 gel pens for the sleeker pupil cost £3.99.

Colour me beautiful

Crayola colours come in at just £2.99 per 12-piece set and include pencil, Twistables and Super Tips packs.

Pack it up

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From wheelie bags with extendable handles for those with more to carry (19.99) to the quintessential ruck sack for the 10-lesson high school pupil - Lidl has it all.

A kids character trolley costs just £9.99 while a 24L back pack will set you back just £5.99.

For those with heavier loads the 27L backpack complete with laptop compartment, concealed rain cover, insulate lunch box and more costs £14.99.

Rainy days and Mondays

The primary school kids will love Lidl's character umbrellas at £2.99. They make the school commute in the rain a bit more colourful.

Fill 'er up

Start the day with a filled-up 600ml water bottle, complete with name tag space, for £2.99.

Blank canvas

Drawing paper in A3 and A4 formats come in at 99p

Fold it up

With elasticated bands to keep all in place, Lidl's A3 and A4 folders cost £1.99.

Lidl's Back to School Range is in stores now, for more info visit:


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