It will be glum faces all round this week as the summer holidays draw to a close.

Back to school means getting organised after six weeks of freedom: searching under the bed for your books, discovering your unwashed gym kit still in the bottom of your rucksack and setting your alarm clock for an early start.

It takes some getting used to after so many weeks of pleasing yourself. Not everyone will dread the start of term. Some pupils may look forward to returning to school, eager to continue their studies.

We have taken a look through the T&A archives to reveal a snapshot of school life over the past few decades.

These pupils from the former Thorpe Junior High School look happy enough - they are receiving awards on speech day in July 1967, and the school holidays are just about to start. Either it was an all-girls school or the girls were cleverer than the boys as the winners’ line up is all-female. They all look very smart in their neat uniforms.

Youngsters returning to school after the summer break generally look smart, with neat ties and tucked-in shirts. It does not take long, however - usually a couple of hours - for them to adopt the more typical, more slovenly look of loose ties and shirts hanging out.

The school is not identified in the photograph of a music lesson taking place in 1974, which shows the pupils having a chuckle with their teacher. Most of the pupils are playing recorders, with just one pupil on guitar and another, in the background, on cello. Unfortunately today music is constantly under threat in state schools across the UK due to budget cuts, yet it is a subject enjoyed by and benefiting many. In some schools it has been removed entirely from the curriculum.

The sight of a boy or girl slouching alone in a corridor, usually after the final bell, is a familiar one in schools across the country. The pupil is usually waiting outside a senior teacher’s office, before being summoned and then reprimanded for a misdemeanour. This poor lad may or may not be awaiting his fate at Grange Upper School back in 1980. He may simply be waiting for his mates to finish lessons.

Pupils are milling about outside Hanson School in Swain House in this scene from 1973, possibly at the end of the school day. At some schools, this is a time of high spirits, when scuffles break out and teachers race out to intervene. One constant over the years is the behaviour of pupils, from rushing along corridors - and being loudly reprimanded by teachers - to not paying attention in class and fighting in the playground. And, of course, behaving very well and being a model pupil.

It is interesting to see children with traditional leather school satchels, which died out altogether in favour of rucksacks, now known as backpacks. They have in recent years seen a resurgence as fashion accessories, coming in various colours and patterns.

To today’s pupils the machines being used by pupils at Rhodesway School in Allerton in 1973 look straight out of the dark ages. Clunky and cumbersome, they are a far cry from the slim, sleek laptops and computer screens used in today’s classrooms. Over time one of the main changes in classrooms over time has to be computerisation.

The long wooden tables and high stools of the science labs can be seen in one picture, with its location unidentified. A skeleton stands at the front of the classroom, at one time a common feature of biology lessons.

There is a message on the blackboard ‘REMEMBER WE ARE CLOSED TOMORROW’ - there could be various reasons for this. Nowadays schools generally close for staff training days.

Traditional blackboards and chalk are, sadly, fast becoming a thing of the past, being replaced by interactive white boards. Not so long ago, teachers would think nothing of throwing wooden-backed blackboard rubbers at inattentive pupils.

Sport is an important part of school life. This 1977 Salt Grammar School football team should have posed before kick-off to avoid their filthy knees and kit.

Varied sports programmes are offered in both primary and secondary schools, with typical activities at state secondary schools including football, athletics, hockey, tennis, netball and gymnastics.

Not everyone is keen to participate, some will do anything to get out of it, writing fictitious notes from parents, deliberately forgetting to bring their kit or turning up for class late.

It does not take long for school to ease itself back into its normal routine, and, for staff and students, by the time the first week back has ended the summer holidays seem worlds away.