Princess Charlotte initially showed off her shy side while heading into Thomas's Battersea, where she joined her big brother

By Stephanie Petit
September 05, 2019 11:08 AM
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Princess Charlotte‘s official first day of school portrait is here — and big brother Prince George makes a cameo!

Before heading off with George, mom Kate Middleton and dad Prince William to start school at Thomas’s Battersea on Thursday, the 4-year-old royal posed for a picture at the family’s Kensington Palace home.

“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to share a photograph of Prince George and Princess Charlotte at Kensington Palace this morning. The image was taken shortly before Their Royal Highnesses left for Thomas’s Battersea,” Kensington Palace said in a statement.

The royal siblings are all smiles in the sweet snap. George lovingly puts an arm around his little sister, as Charlotte shows off her excitement for her first day of school.

Charlotte had perfect marks when it came to her first day of school style, making her uniform debut in a navy dress over a white blouse covered by a navy sweater bearing the school’s logo in red. She completed the look with white ankle socks and her navy Mary Jane shoes from Amaia. She also added an unexpected personal touch to her backpack: a sequined unicorn keychain!

Princess Charlotte and Prince George
Kensington Palace/PA Wire

Princess Charlotte rocks a number of adorable hairstyles, and her first day of school was no exception. Mom Kate styled her daughter’s hair in a simple low ponytail accessorized by a small navy bow.

Princess Charlotte, Kate Middleton, Prince George and Prince William
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Prince George, now 6 and starting his third year at the $23,000-per-year private school, was there on Charlotte’s big day to show her the royal ropes. When he walked into Thomas’s Battersea on his first day in Sept. 2017, he seemed serious as he held Prince William’s hand and greeted the head of the lower school, Helen Haslem — a departure from the huge grin he sported in his own official portrait! In the adorable snap, father and son (in his perfectly pressed uniform!) hold hands on the steps of Kensington Palace.

Prince William and Prince George
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Although the Duchess of Cambridge was expected to join her son for the important milestone at the time, but she was forced to cancel her plans due to acute morning sickness she was suffering during her pregnancy with Prince Louis.

Kate Middleton and Princess Charlotte
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The family arrived to the school around 8:20 a.m. London time on Thursday. Initially clutching mom Kate’s right hand with both of hers, a shy Charlotte then relaxed her grip as she walked across the schoolyard. A few steps away, big brother George held the hand of their dad, Prince William. The proud parents carried their children’s backpacks as they made their way to the school’s entrance.

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They walked up to Haslem, who first greeted George before turning to the princess starting school. As she turned to walk through the doors, Charlotte tentatively looked towards photographers and gave a small wave.

Princess Charlotte
Aaron Chown - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Once the early nerves are over, outgoing Charlotte — who has spent the previous 18 months or so at Willcocks Nursery School — will be thrilled to be at Thomas’s.

“She can’t wait to be with George at big school,” an insider previously told PEOPLE. “She is so excited about it all.”