The Guardian reader's guide to making sure your child doesn't fit in at school

ARE you a middle-class parent who wants to make their child seem pretentious and unusual when they go back to school? Follow our guide.

Give them a weird packed lunch

Include things like carrot sticks, Swedish fish balls and artisan oat bran powder. It’s doubly healthy because no other child will swap flageolet bean salad for Monster Munch.

Make them look ridiculous

Perhaps an ethnic hat with earflaps for boys, or a dress for girls that looks as if they’ve timewarped from the 1970s. Also acceptable: sandals, dungarees, anything you made yourself from a sack.

Give them terrible advice about bullies

If confronted by a bully, instruct your child to say something like: “You are disrespecting my educational rights as a citizen of this school.” This will end the bullying right there and then.

Buy them too much educational equipment

Guardian children should have to lug bags heaving with protractor sets, packed pencil cases and extra textbooks they won’t actually need. These can then be thrown onto the roof of the science block by older hard children.

Coach them to ask annoying questions

Give your kids homeschooling in which they are encouraged to constantly demand more knowledge, causing them to drive real teachers up the wall with questions like “How many types of wasp are there?” and “Why is there a sky?”

Make sure they share your dreary ethical concerns

There’s nothing busy teachers like more than a miniature Guardian reader asking “Does the school have a policy on biodegradable cups?”.

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Dad pranks son by saying he's proud of him

A FATHER has pranked his son by saying he’s proud of him, it has been confirmed.

Stephen Malley visited his parents for Sunday lunch and began telling them about his job working for an arts charity when his father David decided to pull the hilarious stunt.

David Malley said: “He started yakking on about this new job. I cut him short and said ‘That’s great son, I’m proud of you’”.

“And he totally fell for it! He became all confident and upbeat and started saying why it meant so much to him. And before he could make too much of a fool of himself I yelled out ‘Gotcha!’”

“And he was like ‘what do you mean gotcha?’ and I was like ‘I was joking, I’m not really proud of you!’. It was absolutely priceless.”

He said: “I never thought he’d take the bait. Maybe if he had a decent job in the construction industry like his older brother then maybe it would have been believable.

“It’s actually slightly pathetic that he even went for it, the daft twat.”

Stephen Malley said: “Yeah he got me good, that’s dad, a master prankster.

“Then he made me fix his laptop.”