'I was worried she could get hurt, but she's not as fragile as you'd think': World's smallest girl who measures just 68cm starts first day at primary schoolCharlotte Garside no bigger than newborn and smaller than favourite teddyFive-year-old was born was an extremely rare form of primordial dwarfismParents hope time at primary school will give her as normal a life as possibleMother: 'She is not the sort of
person who will fade into the background'

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UPDATED:

11:04 GMT, 24 September 2012

The world's smallest girl Charlotte Garside took a massive step this month after starting her first day at primary school.

The five-year-old, who is just 68cm tall and weighs less than 9lbs, is no bigger than a newborn and smaller than her favourite teddy.

Last week, she joined kids her own age in the classroom for the first time.

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'Massive personality': World's smallest girl Charlotte Garside (centre) joins other pupils on her first day at primary school

'Massive personality': World's smallest girl Charlotte Garside (centre) joins other pupils on her first day at primary school

Smaller than her favourite teddy: Charlotte is just 68cm tall and weighs less than 9lbs

Smaller than her favourite teddy: Charlotte is just 68cm tall and weighs less than 9lbs

The day marked a milestone for proud
parents Scott Garside and Emma Newman who have battled to give their
daughter as normal a life as possible.

Charlotte was born with a form of Primordial Dwarfism so rare doctors don't even have a name for it.

But despite being warned she could die before the age of one, Charlotte has developed into a boisterous and inquisitive girl

Emma,
30, of Withernsea, East Yorks, said: 'Although Charlotte is a
one-in-a-million baby with some health problems, she is not the sort of
person who will fade into the background.

Unique: Charlotte was born with a form of Primordial Dwarfism so rare doctors don't even have a name for it

Unique: Charlotte was born with a form of Primordial Dwarfism so rare doctors don't even have a name for it

Charlotte Garside in her new school

Charlotte Garside in her new school

Defying the doctors: Despite being warned she could die before the age of one, Charlotte has developed into a boisterous and inquisitive girl

'She may be small but she has a massive personality and wants to do everything a normal five-year-old does.

'She
is very inquisitive and the school have already told us she has a
learning age of a three-year-old, which is higher than we thought.

'Of
course, I was worried she could get hurt by the other children, but she
has her own tutor look after her and she's not as fragile as you'd
think.'

When she was born, Charlotte weighed less than 2lbs, measured 25cm and had to be dressed in dolls' clothes.

'Giving her a normal life': Scott and Emma feel the best way to see what Charlotte is capable of is by testing her in mainstream education

'Giving her a normal life': Scott and Emma feel the best way to see what Charlotte is capable of is by testing her in mainstream education

Pocket-sze: Charlotte is barely bigger than a newborn and smaller than some of her teddies

Pocket-sze: Charlotte is barely bigger than a newborn and smaller than some of her teddies

'She might look like a doll but she's made of strong stuff': Charlotte with sisters Sabrina, 12 and Sophie, eight

'She might look like a doll but she's made of strong stuff': Charlotte with sisters Sabrina, 12 and Sophie, eight

As well as a weakened immune system and cysts on her liver, Charlotte's mental and physical development has been delayed

As well as a weakened immune system and cysts on her liver, Charlotte's mental and physical development has been delayed

Emma carried the tiny baby around in the front pocket of her hoodie and put her in nappies the size of a credit card.

Now measuring less than 70cm, she still wears clothes for newborns and is even dwarfed by the family's pet cat.

But ask sisters Chloe, 15, Sabrina, 12, or Sophie, eight, and they will tell you she makes her presence felt.

Chloe
said: 'She might look like a doll but she's made of strong stuff. She
loves tearing around the house and being thrown in the air.

'When people first meet her they are afraid she might break if they
touch her – but she's quite scrappy and doesn't sit still for a second.'

'One-in-a-million baby': The five-year-old's aprents Scott Garside and Emma Newman want Charlotte to lead as normal life as possible

'One-in-a-million baby': The five-year-old's aprents Scott Garside and Emma Newman want Charlotte to lead as normal life as possible

Tiny: Charlotte weighed less than 2lbs at birth, measured 25cm and had to be dressed in dolls' clothes

Tiny: Charlotte weighed less than 2lbs at birth, measured 25cm and had to be dressed in dolls' clothes

Small, but made of strong stuff: Now measuring less than 70cm, she still wears clothes for newborns and is even dwarfed by the family's pet cat

Small, but made of strong stuff: Now measuring less than 70cm, she still wears clothes for newborns and is even dwarfed by the family's pet cat

'Keeps on thriving': Because of her condition, Emma said she didn't know if Charlotte would live this long

'Keeps on thriving': Because of her condition, Emma said she didn't know if Charlotte would live this long

Small, but mighty: Now measuring less than 70cm, she still wears clothes for newborns and is even dwarfed by the family's pet cat

Small, but mighty: Now measuring less than 70cm, she still wears clothes for newborns and is even dwarfed by the family's pet cat

As well as a weakened immune system and cysts on her liver, Charlotte's mental and physical development has been delayed.

But Scott, 26, and Emma, feel the best way to see what Charlotte is capable of is by testing her in mainstream education.

Emma
said: 'There are a lot of unknowns but Charlotte has a way of
surprising you when you least expect it. We didn't know if she would
live this long.

'We didn't know if she would be able to interact with people and there have been times when we thought we might lose her.

'But she keeps on thriving and I can't wait to see what the next year brings.'

Five-year-old Charlotte Garside at home in Hull, England

Charlotte Garside holds a bottle of milk at home

'Not the sort of person who will fade into the background': Charlotte at home in Withernsea, East Yorkshire

Precious: Her mother Emma carried Charlotte around in the front pocket of her hoodie and put her in nappies the size of a credit card

Precious: Her mother Emma carried Charlotte around in the front pocket of her hoodie and put her in nappies the size of a credit card

There are a lot of unknowns with Charlotte, but she has a way of surprising people when they least expect it

There are a lot of unknowns with Charlotte, but she has a way of surprising people when they least expect it

VIDEO: Charlotte's family say she's just like any other little girl!

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