Would you take your kids on a gap year abroad if you could afford it?

There are some raised eyebrows this morning because actress Emma Thompson has announced plans to take her 10-year-old daughter on a gap year abroad between primary and secondary school.

Personally, while I would have done it slightly earlier, before the transfer to secondary school, I think the idea of taking your primary school children travelling for a year is a wonderful idea, if you can afford it. We did a lot of travelling with No 1 Son when he was younger – including Europe, New Zealand, Australia and the US – and although most of our trips were in school holiday time, I would definitely have considered going for longer if we could have afforded it. It's often said that children are like sponges. They soak up every experience and nugget of knowledge, and I'm convinced that our travelling is one of the reason he is so good at languages and history. There is, in my opinion, only so much you can learn at school. And of course Emma will probably have the best tutor for her daughter money can buy.

It's also the reason why we've never had any qualms about asking permission to go on holiday during term time, although I realise not all schools are quite as tolerant.

One of my favourite bloggers is actually taking her primary school children on a gap year and their plans sound wonderful – you can read about them here. But meanwhile, I'd love to know what you think. Would you take your kids on a gap year abroad if you could afford it? Or do you think children shouldn't miss any school at all?

written by Liz Jarvis