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summer 2018

Years of Service to BC Families

Pelvic Floor Health: the low-down

Bubbleology: The Science of Outdoor Fun

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Letter from the Editor

Years of Service to BC Families

W Carlie Parkinson

e did it! We finally made it through winter, and now the sun is shining, and the shorts are on. Summer holiday is fast approaching so now is the time to start planning how to fill the eight weeks. Will you take a holiday? Book in some summer camps? Or just spend the days at home? In this issue, enjoy our Summer Camp Guide; tips for making enormous bubbles; and creative ways to get messy. For those rainy days or to keep their brains active— blogging may be an interesting idea. It provides kids with an outlet to explore their passions—maybe sports, astrology, ecology? The options are endless as are the learning opportunities. Whichever activity you choose to fill the summer months with, just remember to have fun doing it and enjoy the quality time with those you love. Have a great summer!

Inside 4 The Power of Yet

21 Messy Summer Fun

7 Pelvic Floor Health: the low-down

24 Kid Blogging: A summer writing project

11 Bubbleology: The science of outdoor fun

27 Dos and Don’ts of Giving your Kids an Allowance

14 Summer Camp Guide

29 Summer Essentials

14 Residential Camps 15 Lower Mainland 19 Vancouver Island Follow us on

Summer 2018 Volume 27, Number 2

BC Parent Newsmagazine

Mailing Address: P.O.Box 30020, North Vancouver, BC V7H 2Y8 email: Canadian Publications Mail Registration No.251836

Publisher/Executive Editor: Carlie Parkinson Editor: Geoffrey Legh Advertising Design & Layout: Julie Cochrane Editorial Design & Layout: Advertising Sales:

Contributors: Kelly Cleeve, Nic Enright-Morin, Care Elise, Christina Katz, Christa Melnyk Hines, Tanni Haas BC Parent is published 4 times per year. The Publisher reserves the right to omit advertising which is judged to be in poor taste or which does not conform to the concept of this publication.


The Power of YET By Kelly Cleeve


o you know that the greatest predictor of a child’s future success has little to do with their academic ability? Recent research indicates that a child’s beliefs about their ability to learn and think, greatly affects their future. Does your child believe that their talents and intelligence are growing entities? Or do they think that these attributes are blessings that we are simply born with, or without? Inevitably, we all experience challenge at some point in our lives. We have disagreements in our relationships. We struggle with academics. We don’t make the team or get the job that we want. The question is, what do we attribute these failures to? As a teacher, I have had a front row seat to two very distinct mindsets in children. In the face of challenge, one group has an inner voice that whispers, “I can’t. This is hard. I am not smart enough/fast enough/


good enough. I am not enough.� These children see challenge as an obstacle and their natural inclination is to back away, for any potential failure could be a direct reflection of their intelligence. When something

By adding one simple word, it opens up a whole realm of possibility.

is difficult or not going well, they attribute this adversity to skills that they lack. You may hear a child say, “I can’t do this because I am bad at chemistry,� or “I am a terrible athlete.� Children who see challenge

through a negative lens, are weighed down by a “Fixed Mindset�. They do not see the potential for the possible evolution of their skill set. The other group of children views challenge as an opportunity. It is a chance to learn, to explore, to experiment and to grow. Their inner voice champions, “This may be difficult, but that is okay. I may not be good at this YET, but I will keep trying.� If these children fail, they tend to recognize external factors and know that, with increased time and effort, they can and will succeed. They understand that, perhaps they need to study more for the next test, or take better notes in class. Maybe they just need more practice riding that bicycle or working on that slapshot. These children possess a “Growth Mindset�. It is important to talk with our children about the way we think and learn, for we

want them to understand that growth takes time and effort. Our brains are incredible and malleable, capable of change. Intelligence is not fixed, nor are our talents. If children believe that their brains have the ability to grow and that, with practice and perseverance, talents can be nurtured, it could have a tremendous effect on how they view their own potential. If a child believes that they are forever doomed to be bad at drawing or soccer or math, what motivation do they possess to keep working? However, if a child understands that a momentary struggle is an opportunity to learn, chances are, they will be intrinsically motivated to continue their efforts. Even as adults, we sometimes fall prey to a “Fixed Mindset�. There have been many times when I have lamented my lack of parallel parking skills or knowledge about technology. As parents, however, we should be careful to recognize the gravity of these statements. My oldest son struggles in math. In an effort to be empathetic, I once shared that I am bad at math too and understood his frustration. Though, on the surface, this statement seems well inten-

tioned and kind, it is laden with underlying messages. In reality, what my son heard me say was that I am almost 40 years old and still bad at math. My empathy actually implied that since I struggled with math for my whole life, he will too. In his 11 year old

I still have a lot of “yets� in my life. I am not a great cook, yet. My house is not clean, yet. I don’t have enough time or money to travel, yet.

mind, he wondered why he should invest so much extra time trying to complete his assignments, if he was destined to fail. What I should have shared with him are positive self-affirmations that I use in times of challenge, or thoughts about effort, practice and attitude.

In my classroom, we often discuss the power of “Yet�. When struggling with a concept, skill or friendship issue, my students are encouraged to add the word “yet� to the end of their sentence. For example, “I am not good at this, yet.� or “I do not understand this, yet.� By adding one simple word, it opens up a whole realm of possibility. The word, “yet�, reminds students that their skills are still evolving and that they need to keep trying. With practice, with problem solving, with critical and creative thinking, their current struggles can improve. I encourage you to talk to your kids about the power of “yet� and see how it shifts their mindset. In fact, try using it yourself. I still have a lot of yets in my life. I am not a great cook, yet. My house is not clean, yet. I don’t have enough time or money to travel, yet. With time, effort and a creative plan, I see improvement in my future. It’s a positive outlook, don’t you think? Kelly Cleeve is an elementary school teacher, graduate student at the University of British Columbia and busy mother of two beautiful boys.

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Changes in bladder or bowel control?

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At Dayan Physiotherapy and Pelvic Floor Clinic, our team of physiotherapists have the compassion, training and expertise to help you be fully engaged in your life, conďŹ dently doing what you want to do. We will answer all your questions, ensure you understand what is happening in your body and determine a treatment plan that is speciďŹ c to you.



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Pelvic Floor Health: the low-down By Nic Enright-Morin


et’s get real: sneezing when you pee and painful intercourse are not usually topics that women are in a rush to discuss. But the reality is, pelvic floor dysfunction affects one in three Canadian women, a change commonly brought on by childbearing and menopause. But if you thought looking after your pelvic floor meant doing a few Kegels while you stand in line at the grocery store— think again. Not only are Kegels not appropriate for everyone, if you do them incorrectly, but you can also harm the muscles and tissues you’re trying to help. It’s also crucial to get a proper diagnosis of what’s going on ‘down there’ if you are having issues. Otherwise, if you treat it by yourself, you might do more harm than good. So, what can women do to make sure that they are properly taking care of their pelvic floor health?

What is Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy?

Pelvic floor physiotherapy is the most noninvasive approach to treating pelvic health issues, including incontinence, and patients can often see results after only a few visits. Just like the name suggests, pelvic floor physiotherapy strengthens the important

But if you thought looking after your pelvic floor meant doing a few Kegels while you stand in line at the grocery store—think again.

muscles lining the pelvic floor. These are the muscles we use to control the urge to urinate or defecate, and they support the uterus, bladder, and rectum. Both men and women have them, and these muscles also help during childbirth.

What is Pelvic Floor Dysfunction?

Pelvic floor dysfunction (PFD), refers to any disorder found within the pelvic floor. This includes bladder and bowel dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, pelvic pain, pelvic organ prolapse (descent of the organs) and pelvic oor muscle dysfunction. A pelvic oor disorder may begin after surgery, pregnancy, childbirth, trauma, bladder infections, if you play a lot of sports, hormonal changes or aging. So if PFD is pretty common, and can be caused for multiple reasons, what can we do to help treat it?

Why should you see a specialist for your pelvis?

Just as you wouldn’t go see a dentist to fix your eyes, it is just as important to see an expert who specializes in pelvic health if you have PFD issues. Tamara Nerreter, a Vancouver physiotherapist who specializes in pelvic health, says that seeing an expert is very important if you want to achieve successful results. “If a woman is having issues, she needs to see a pelvic floor physio or someone who has done extra training in pelvic floor health, someone who can

do a proper vaginal exam and assessments, because even gynecologists don’t assess the pelvic floor in the same way that we do.� What can you expect if you go and see a pelvic floor physiotherapist?

Nerreter says that a good physio will do a full head-to-toe assessment. You should also expect a physio to use equipment like an ultrasound, to show you your pelvic floor. Nerreter said, “I ask my patients to do a Kegel, and they can see that on the ultrasound image in front of them, and perhaps they can see that their pelvic floor might not even be responding. An ultrasound is a really good way for women to get to know their bodies and reidentify with their pelvic floor and vaginal area.� If you go to see a pelvic floor specialist, you can also expect to have a vaginal examination, although this is only done as long as the patient is comfortable with the idea. Nerreter said that getting help, and talking about PFD, is something women should feel empowered doing. “I think one of the biggest issues is just breaking down the myth and getting women to understand that you’re not at a loss if these changes are happening. That you can get back to running, or the things that you want to do and that you don’t have to give these things up just because you’ve had kids.� When should you go and see a pelvic floor physiotherapist?

While seeing a pelvic floor physiotherapist Continued on page 9


Pelvic Floor Physiotherapists in the Lower Mainland Dayan Physiotherapy and



Pelvic Floor Clinic – Vancouver






CBI Health Centre – Guildford


Coast Therapy – Coquitlam






















Johanne Sabourin Physical Therapist



Corporation – Coquitlam & Surrey




CBI Health Centre – Chilliwack,


Garrison Village


CBI Health Centre – New Westminster





























“I think one of the biggest issues is just breaking down the myth and getting women to understand that you’re not at a loss if these changes are happening. That you can get back to running, or the things that you want to do and that you don’t have to give these things up just because you’ve had kids.”


is not necessarily common practice in Canada, and is only covered by extended medical care, in many other parts of the world, a woman’s pelvic floor health is considered imperative. In France, pelvic health is viewed as so important, that between four to six weeks post-partum, every single woman who has delivered a baby, (either by C-section or vaginally) gets up to 12 paidfor visits with their doctor and a pelvic floor physiotherapist, at the same time. Together as a group, the patient, doctor, and physiotherapist come up with a treatment plan. Marcy Dayan a registered physiotherapist and clinical specialist in women’s health, who has a practice in Vancouver says, “It’s important to go and see a pelvic floor physiotherapist post-partum because the pelvic floor has been carrying a heavy load for several months and it’s had a baby go through it, and there are most likely nerve muscle and fascial changes. What we know is that you can get stress incontinence not just from delivery, but it can happen during pregnancy, and even if it resolves by itself, there is a higher risk that it will return.�

She also says, “If you don’t address it, it can also get worse as you get older, as more things change in your body.� Both Nerreter and Dayan agree that although seeking help post-partum is a good idea, if you are a pregnant woman, getting advice in the pre-natal period is even better. Who should go and see a pelvic floor physiotherapist?

Nerreter says, “I treat all age ranges of women. I see young girls who are gymnasts and cheerleaders, I see kids with continence issues, I see new moms and then I have patients who are all the way up past menopause. It’s very important no matter where you are in life to find solutions that work for your pelvic floor. Because the alternative is surgery and it has a very high failure rate.� Nerreter also said that it’s important to receive guidance from a specialist because treatment plans are not one-size-fits-all, since we all have a unique set of problems concerning our pelvic floor health. “We go into pregnancy with a story, and with that in mind, every woman is going to have a different experience of pregnancy.�

Improving Health, Enriching Lives.

Our pe Ou pelv lviic hea ealt lth lt h ph phys y io ys ioth theerap th pists can help mana naage conditionss su s ch as: Pre & Post Pregnancy g y Conditions „ Urinaryy Incontinence „ Pelvic Organ g Prolapse p „Overactive Bladder Constipation „Pelvic Pain „Postural Pain „Rehab Post Prostatectomy „And More! For more information on our services, contact our closest CBI Health Centre GARRISON 8-45575 Keith Wilson Rd, Garrison Village Chilliwack, BC V2R 0M6 T: 604.426.0516

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by Care Elise

Looking for an inexpensive option for some outdoor summer fun? With a little preparation, you can turn bubble blowing into an afternoon of scientific experiments. The Science:

Bubbles are fascinating, no matter how old you get! Every soap bubble is a marvel of chemistry and physics. Soap (a surfactant) lowers the surface tension between liquids, allowing bubbles to form. A bubble is composed of three layers—a thin film of water, sandwiched between two layers of surfactant molecules (soap). This unique structure is what makes bubbles beautiful, but delicate! As long as the surface tension isn’t broken, bubbles can survive surprising situations. Why are bubbles round?

Because bubbles are held together by surface tension, they must take on the most efficient, minimal shape—the sphere. Bub-

bles are the strongest when they are wobbling, before their shape solidifies. This is the point where it’s easiest to bounce them and do certain tricks! Here are some tips for turning bubble play into a great learning experience for your children. Why do bubbles pop?

Bubbles don’t pop whenever they touch something. There are three reasons why bubbles break: 1. too much wind, too fast 2. evaporation due to time and heat 3. their delicate surface breaks whenever they touch something dry A child’s finger, a blade of grass, even a speck of dry dust can pop a bubble. The

best solution? Make sure everything is WET! When I do bubble shows, I use humidifiers to make the air damp. A spray bottle will also do the trick. Spray the air around your bubble area often, or blow bubbles near a pool or sprinkler. Bubbles hate the sun—the heat speeds up their evaporation process. This is a great activity for an overcast day, or a shady spot—as long as there isn’t too much wind! You’ll need:

UĂŠĂŠLĂ•VÂŽiĂŒ]ĂŠ>ĂŠĂƒÂ…>Â?Â?ÂœĂœĂŠÂŤ>Â˜ĂŠÂœĂ€ĂŠV>ĂƒĂƒiĂ€ÂœÂ?iĂŠ`ÂˆĂƒÂ…ĂŠ (for holding bubble mix), bubble wands, spray bottle of water, and a towel (to dry hands) UĂŠDIY bubble wands: pure cotton pipe cleaners, pony beads BCPARENTCAsSUMMER11

UĂŠBig bubble wand: 4 plastic straws, cotton string UĂŠBasic bubble mix: Dawn dish soap (1 cup), 4 litres (16 cups) hot water, Âź cup glycerin. Gently stir all ingredients together (avoid making it foam). It works best if left to rest overnight before use. Scoop foam off the top as needed.

inside the first two. Your big bubble blower is complete! Submerge your wand in a pan of bubble solution (slightly larger than your wand). TIP: Don’t blow giant bubbles with your mouth! Instead, drag the bubble blower slowly through the air, careful not to break the soap film.

DIY Giant Bubble Wand

Bouncing bubbles DIY bubble wands

Encourage children to experiment with making different shaped wands of all shapes by twisting together soft cotton pipe cleaners. These are available at newsstands and tobacconists (avoid the synthetic ones from dollar stores). Make it an inquiry based activity, asking questions like: “Do you think a square wand will make a square bubble?� Help them decorate (and seal off any pointy ends) with pony beads. Big bubbles

To make giant bubbles, you need a special wand, the right solution, and patience. You can make your own wand out of cotton yarn and four straws. Cut the string to at least 4 times the length of one straw. The longer your string, the larger your bubbles—but small children may have difficulty with a larger wand! Thread the string through two of the straws and tie the ends together to form a loop. Tuck the knot inside one of the straws. The other two straws will be the wand’s handles. Pinch one end of each of these straws and tuck them


You can bounce bubbles up and down off your clothing—if you’re wearing all natural fibres. Bubbles will bounce off cotton or wool, and break on most synthetics. They will also bounce off wet skin! Blowing bubbles with your hands

You can blow bubbles with your bare hands, as long as you can create an enclosed shape with your fingers. Dip your hands up to your wrists in bubble solution and try out different shapes. Your hands have to be dripping wet for this to work. You can also try catching bubbles, and making them jiggle and dance in your hands. Pencil through bubble?!

Any object that is wet enough can go through a bubble without popping it, no matter how pointy! Dip a pencil in bubble solution and then slowly poke it through the bubble. Experiment!

Try making big bubbles and blowing little ones inside of them. Can you blow a bub-

Take four straws and some cotton yarn to make your own giant bubble wand. ble dome on a dish? What about a chain of bubbles? What happens if you take two bubbles and hit them together (if you’re gentle, they should form into one big bubble!). Pull a bubble apart, or karate chop it in half. Can you build a bubble snowman? The possibilities are only limited by the imagination. Remember, working with bubbles requires kids to be gentle. I tell children that bubbles are shy, so we should try not to scare them! It’s important to avoid blowing too fast. And don’t get discouraged—it takes practice and experimentation to do some of these tricks. Now that you know a few secrets of bubbleology, experiment all you can! #ARE %LISE is a professional magician and bubbleologist who performs shows for kids and adults with her partner Jordan. Visit her at Questions? Email Care at

Ages 3-12

July 9th - August 3rd at Westside Montessori Academy & adjacent Beaconsfield Park

Full & Half Day Camps Before & After Camp Care Available

"SUT$SBGUTÙ%+#FBU.BLJOHÙ/JOKB4FMG%FGFOTFÙ+FXFMSZ$SBGUÙ (BSEFOJOHÙ8JMEFSOFTT5SFLÙ4QBDF&YQMPSBUJPOÙ.BTUFS$IFGÙ-JQ4ZOD Ù'PSUT0CTUBDMFTÙ.VTJDBM5IFBUSFÙ*UBMJBO%BODFÙBOETPNVDINPSF Join us at Westside Montessori Academy for a summer full of learning, exploration and fun. We strive for a wide variety of activities to offer children and employ talented specialists and support staff to ensure the children are safe, well cared for, and of course happy!



Summer Camp Guide Residential Camps

Camp Kodiak Parry Sound, Ontario Ages 6–18

ties, and all in a spectacular setting with amazing staff from around the world... all who love kids. Life like no other awaits!

Pioneer Pacific Camp Thetis Island, 250/246-9613 Ages 7–18

Aspengrove Equestrian Academy Vernon, 250/545-9470 Ages 8–17

Camp Owaissi Kelowna, 250/769-3676 Ages 7–17

Stillwood Camp Cultus Lake, 1-800/507-8455 Ages 5–16

British Columbia Family French Camp (BCFFC) Shuswap Lake, Gwillim Lake and Nanaimo

Children’s Horse Camp Webbs Holiday Acres Aldergrove, 604/857-1712 Ages 6–14

Camp Pringle Shawnigan Lake, 250/472-6877 Ages 6–17

Debate Camp Canada Van: Day Camp, Gr 5–10 Brentwood College, Mill Bay, Vancouver Island: Overnight Camp, Gr 7–11

Timberline Ranch Maple Ridge, 604/463-9278 Ages 9–16

Camp Artaban Gambier Island 604/980-0391 Ages 8–18 Camp Fircom Gambier, 604/662-7756 Ages 5–17 Camp Imadene Mesachie Lake, 250/749-6606 Ages 7–18, plus Family Camps

Camp Suzuki: Howe Sound Howe Sound – Camp Fircom 604/732-4228 Ages 7–13 Camp Qwanoes Vancouver Island 250/246-3014 Qwanoes is a Christian camp built from the ground up for kids to experience an unforgettable life-changing week. Qwanoes is wild action and pure fun, sun-soaked days, new friendships, tasty food, great music, over 75 activi-


Evans Lake Camp North of Squamish, 604/294-2267 Ages 8–16 Green Bay Bible Camp West Kelowna, 250/768-5884 Ages 6–14 Outward Bound National locations 604/901-0013 (ext 221) Ages 14+

Wyld Summer Camps WYLD Expeditions Strathcona Park, 250/286-3122 Ages 12–18

special needs Camp Alohi Lani Port Moody camp-alohi-lani For youth who have a parent or grandparent in a significant role living with ALS.

summer camp guide Camp Goodtimes and Teen Program For children ages 7–15 and teens 15–18 with cancer and their families. Camp Kodiak Parry Sound, Ontario Ages 6–18 For children and teens with and without Learning Disabilities, ADHD and high-functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder DYT Summer Camps Focussing on language enhancement (ASL) and social opportunities for deaf and hard of hearing children ages 5–18. Easter Seals Camps 604/873-1865 or 1-800/818-4483 Ages 6–18 For children and teens with physical and/or mental disabilities. Empowering Steps Club Aviva, Coquitlam 604/526-4464 Camps for students with developmental challenges

Eureka Camp 604/520-1155 For children and adolescents with invisible disabilities. Young Burn Survivors Camp camp-for-young-burn-survivors For young burn survivors ages 6–18

Lower Mainland & Fraser Valley art, music, drama & dance The Arts Connection Richmond, 604/241-0141 Ages 18 mths–8 yrs Arts Umbrella Vancouver, Surrey 604/681-5268 Ages 3–19

Bard on the Beach: Young Shakespeareans Vancouver, 604/737-0625 Ages 8–18

Camps, Meet the Strings, Piano Camps, Guitar & Ukulele Camps and much more. Register online. Douglas College Community Music School Jazz Camp New West, 604/527-5469 Ages 14+

Boogaloo Academy 604/805-0558, Vancouver Camp Monarch, Music, Art & Dance North Vancouver, 604/723-8151 Ages 5–12 Christianne’s Lyceum of Literature and Art Vancouver, 604/733-1356 Ages 5+ Colourstrings Conservatory – Fun Musical Summer Camps 129 East 8th Ave Vancouver, 778/846-0127 Music & Movement Classes: 3 months to 5 years, grouped by age, 6-week summer session, music, instruments, songs and play. Exciting Music Camps: 4 to 10 years. Let your inner diva out in the Sound of Music Camp, World Explorer Music

Gateway Academy – Acting, Improvisation, Speech, Musical Theatre Richmond, 604/247-4975 Ages 8–18 Goh Ballet Academy Canada Vancouver, 604/872-4014 Ages 4–7 Imagine That – Creative Writing and Drama Workshop Program Vancouver Ages 4–17 Jean Lyons School of Music Vancouver, 604/734-4019 Ages 4–17


summer camp guide Kids on Stage Evergreen Cultural Centre Coquitlam, 604/927-6555 Ages 6–21 Jr. Magician Camp: Jordan and Care Vancouver, Delta (North Delta and Tsawwassen), Langley, Coquitlam Ages 6–12 Lights Up Musical Theatre Schools Throughout Lower Mainland, 888/502-5253 Ages 4–13 Children and teens can sing, dance and act during school breaks at Lights Up Camps. All camps end in a performance for family and friends on the last day. Camps are open to everyone between 4–13 yrs. No prior musical theatre experience is required. Like all Lights Up programs, our camps teach children to work in teams, build confidence, sing, dance, act, and have fun! Outdoor Dancing Discovery, MascallDance West End Vancouver, 604/669-9337\ July 23-27 Ages 6-10 Perform Art Studios North Vancouver, 604/988-4420 Ages 3–18 Place des Arts Coquitlam, 604/664-1636 Ages 5–14 Place des Arts Summer Fun! 6-week Art Camp. Summer Fun! offers flexibility, choice and lots of summertime fun for children ages 5–7 & 8–12. Our halfday, week-long workshops for 11–14 year olds provide more in-depth experiences in a range of visual and performing arts disciplines. “Summer in the City� Weekly Art Camps Vancouver, 604/737-2636 Ages 6–17 Summer Music at UBC 604/822-3113 Ages 9–16 TumbleTown Movement Education Centre Vancouver, 604/357-7355 3–8 yrs Westside Dance Centre 604/736-1000 Ages 4+

general activities Alexandra Neighbourhood House 604/535-0015 Ages 5–12 Clubhouse Kids Vancouver, 778/939-2389 Ages 5–12 False Creek C.C. Daycamps Vancouver, 604/257-8195 Offers canoe/kayak camps, recreational camps and leadership camps for ages 3–14. KidCity Day Camp Vancouver, 604/440-9094 Ages 5–10 Langara Family YMCA 604/324-9622 Preschool, Adventure, Leadership, and Counsellor in Training Camps. Ages 3–16, 8 am–5 pm North Vancouver Recreation Commission 604/987-PLAY (7529) SFU Summer Camps 778/782-4965 Ages 5–19 Spare Time Child Care Society Vancouver Ages 5–12 Sunset Community Centre Vancouver, 604/718-6505 Ages 6–16 West Point Grey Community Centre Summer Day Camp Vancouver, 604/257-8140 Ages 3–13 years

specialty camps Adaptive Multi-Sport Camp Cloverdale, 604/333-3520 Ages 11+

Bricks 4 KidzŽ Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby 778/872-STEM (7836) With kinetic, motorized LEGOŽ models, Bricks 4 KidzŽ Vancouver is offering an exciting and educational lineup of summer camps! From our popular Star Wars and Coding/Robotics Camps to our new Mining & Crafting and Ninjago Camps, kids will have a blast with these STEM activities and challenges. Burnaby Village Museum Burnaby, 604/297-4565 Ages 6–12 In a 1920s setting, children play games and sports, enjoy activities, and enjoy daily carousel rides! There are themed weeks for specific age groups. Christianne’s Lyceum of Literature and Art Vancouver, 604/733-1356 Ages 5+ Cousteau Multi Specialty Camps North Vancouver, 604/924-2457 Indoor & outdoor, athletic, academic & creative activities by Vancouver’s top activity providers & Cousteau’s staff. In French & English (non-French speaking kids welcome). 8 week camps from July 3 to Aug 24 9 am–5 pm (+8–9am care) $375/week Ages 3–5 yrs and 6–9 yrs Dive into Summer Camp at the Vancouver Aquarium 604/659-3552 Ages 4–16 Eco-adventures Summer Camp Mt Seymour, North Vancouver 604/986-2261 Ages 5–12 Eye Level All-Around Summer Camp Richmond, 604/285-3835 Math, English, Brain Games, Robotics, Coding, Mandarin/Cantonese, Public Speaking, Essay Writing, Financial Literacy, Debate, and Sports. July 9–August 17, 2018 Ages 4–14 yrs

FUNbelievable Summer Camp Surrey, 778/394-1243 Ages 5–10 Jr. Magician Camp, Jordan and Care Vancouver, Delta (North Delta and Tsawwassen), Langley, Coquitlam Ages 6–12 La Movida Sewing Camp Kitsilano, West Vancouver For all skill levels, ages 8+ Langara Summer Camps Vancouver, 604/677-0198 For teens 13–17 years LEGO Robotics Summer Camps with Daedalos Enrichment Programs Vancouver, 604/345-8603 July 2018 (4 weeks) at UBC University Chapel and other Vancouver locations. August 2018 (3 weeks, Aug. 7–31) at UBC University Chapel and other Vancouver locations. Register and more info at Lynn Canyon Ecology Centre North Van, 604/990-3755 Ages 5–12 Mindful Changes West Vancouver, 778/999-6457 Mindfulness is a life skill. How to be Mindful is something that children will learn through my programs. Research shows that Mindfulness can enhance children’s happiness, as well as their performance at school. It increases their self-esteem and decreases anxiety. On The Mic Voice-Over Training Vancouver, 604/669-0654 Ages 10–17 Richmond Nature Park Camps Richmond, 604/276-4300 Ages 4–12 Sea Smart-Beach Camp Vancouver, Richmond 604/358-3001 Ages 6–13

Adventure Day Camps Grouse Mountain, North Vancouver, 604/980-9311 Ages 5–16

FarmWonders Camp UBC Farm, 604/827-4048 Ages 6–14

Science World at TELUS World of Science 604/443-7443

BrainSTEM Learning North Vancouver, 604-379-2767 Ages 4–14

Fraser Academy Summer Boost Camp Vancouver, 604/736-5575 Ages 8–13

Sprout the Chef Cooking Camp Vancouver, Burnaby, 604/505-0074 Ages 7–13


summer camp guide

Summer Camps



Summer Camps & Fall Classes Enrolling Now!

3 to 9 years old All summer 8am–5pm

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At Lights Up Schools, we teach Musical Theatre fundamentals to help students shine on stage and in all aspects of their lives. F Whether your child randomly bursts into song and dance, or is ďŹ nding their voice, Lights Up is the perfect extra-curricular activity. Singing, Dancing & Acting classes for 3-18yrs, Spring and Summer Camps, Birthday Parties. LOCATIONS THROUGHOUT THE LOWER MAINLAND

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Give your kids a strong foundation for an active life & success in all sports! JUMP into our great programming for kids from 6 months to 7 years old. Registration Ongoing! skills


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Yaletown North Vancouver 604.568.9690 604.971.0513 101- 837 Beatty St 120 -2270 Dollarton Hwy


summer camp guide St. George’s Summer Programs Vancouver (Dunbar), 604/221-3601 Ages 4–11 StartUp Skool Vancouver, Burnaby, 604/349-8199 Ages 8–16 Stewart Farms Summer Daycamps Surrey, 604/592-6956 Ages 6–12 Tomorrow’s Master of Digital Media Program (TMDM) Centre for Digital Media Vancouver TMDM is a 3-week intensive summer camp for students entering grades 9–12 with artistic or technical interests who want to explore educational and career opportunities in the digital media industry. Students will learn rapid prototyping and collaborative techniques and will have a playable digital media product at the end of the camp. Ages 13–17 yrs TWU Summer Camps Langley, 604/513-2121 ext. 3441 Ages 4–15 Urban Safari Rescue Society Surrey, 604/531-1100 Ages 6–12

and full day camps for 3 to 12-year-olds in East Vancouver. Taking advantage of their secure, air-conditioned classrooms and adjacent Beaconsfield Park, they make summer full of learning, exploring and fun! Young Entrepreneur Learning Labs South Surrey/White Rock, Vancouver, Surrey, Langley, and Richmond 1-800/243-0335 Ages 7–15

sports Absolute Cheer and Tumbling Camp North Vancouver, 604/984-4107 absolutecheer Ages 5–12 Total Athlete Training – Athletes in Action Langley, 604/514-2079 Ages 14–18 Atlantis Swim Programs Vancouver, Burnaby, Coquitlam 604/874-6464 4 mths+ Heroheads Multisport Camp Vancouver, Burnaby, North Vancouver 604/874-6464 Ages 4–8

Westside Church Day Camps North Vancouver and Kistilano 604/263-2314 Ages 3–12 Westside Montessori Academy Vancouver, 604/434-9611 Westside Montessori Academy’s Summer Camps are professionally-led half

KidRock Summer Camps – Cliffhanger Indoor Rock Climbing Vancouver, 604/874-2400 Ages 9–16 Fitba—Soccer Player Development Vancouver, 604/340-1263

The Hive Climbing North Van: 604/990-4483 Vancouver: 604/683-4483 Ages 6–12 Jump Gymnastics Yaletown and North Van 604/568-9690 Jump Gymnastics programming gives your child the strongest foundation for success in all sports and an active life. Classes, camps, birthday parties, date nights and more for kids from 6 months through their 7th year. Jump into the fun! Learn to Sail Deep Cove Yacht Club, North Vancouver, 604/929-1009 Ages 4–16 RBL Basketball 604/269-0221 or 604/253-5295 Ages 5–15

Propel Swimming Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, Surrey, Langley, Coquitlam 1-833-977-6735 (toll free) All ages Royal Soccer Lower Mainland & Fraser Valley 800/427-0536 Ages 5–13 The Royal Soccer Club is celebrating its 25th annual summer grassroots soccer day camps‌ #1 grassroots soccer camp in Canada. Open to boys & girls aged 5 to 13, we offer over 18 locations across British Columbia region during July and August. Visit for more details or call 1-800/427-0536. Scuba Camp Diving Locker, Vancouver 800/DIVE-398 Ages 10+ Sole Girls Empowerment Camps Vancouver, Maple Ridge, N. Vancouver, Port Moody, 778/952-7653 Ages 6–12

The Little Gym Langley, 604/539-2543 Ages 3–12

Sportball Mulitiple locations, 604/688-3157 Ages 16 mths to 12 yrs

Oval Summer Sport Camps Richmond Olympic Oval 778/296-1400 Ages 4–18

Timberline Ranch Maple Ridge, 604/463-9278 Ages 7–8

Pedalheads Bike Camps Locations all over Greater Vancouver 604/874-6464 Ages 2–12 Pedalheads Mountain Biking (PHMB) Point Grey, Burnaby, North Vancouver 604/874-6464 Ages 4–15

Gym-venture Days – TumbleTown Movement Education Centre Vancouver, 604/357-7355 Ages 3–8 years July 9–August 31 TumbleTown Gym-venture Days are off-the-charts fun where kids can get in their flips and tricks while developing

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summer camp guide fundamental movement skills in a positive and encouraging environment. Gymnastics, games, obstacle courses and more adventure packed into each day! Half and full day options available with flexible scheduling! Twin Rivers Equestrian Centre Cloverdale, 604/574-5481 UBC Sport Camps Vancouver, 604/822-6121 Phoenix Gymnastics Vancouver, 604/737-7693 Ages 3+ Yoga Kiddo Buttons Camp YogaButtons Studio Vancouver, 604/739-9642 Ages 3–7

Vancouver Island art, music, drama & dance 4Cats Langford, Oak Bay, Victoria Ages 3–12 Art Play Camp Poppet Studio Ages 5–12 Crafty Summer Camps – Crafty and The Woodshed Victoria Ages 5–8 Dance Camps – Stages Performing Arts School Saanich, 250/384-3267 All ages Harbour Dance Studios Nanaimo, 250/754-6262 Ages 3–12 HipHop Intensive Esquimalt, 250/896-4427 Ages 7–18 Kate Rubin Theatre Summer Camps Victoria, 250/386-7526 Ages 5–17

The Music Box Summer Camps Victoria themusicbox.musicteachers Ages 6–12 The Paint Box School of Art Victoria, 250/590-7571 Ages 3–14 Stages Performing Arts School Victoria, 250/384-3267 Ages 18m+ Tiny Tot Summer Dance Camp and Summer Intensive – Ballet Victoria Victoria, 250-380-6063 Ages 3–6, 12–18+ Victoria Academy of Ballet Half-day Children’s Camps Victoria, 250/590-6752 Ages 3–11

general activities Big Kids Corner Babies to Big Kids Childcare Esquimalt, 250/590-2722 Ages 5–12 Burnside Fun N Sun Burnside Gorge Community Association 250/388-5251 Ages 5–11 Camp Oaklands Oaklands Community Centre Victoria, 250/370-9101 Ages 8–11 Camptastiq Quadra Village Community Centre 250/388-7696 Ages 5–12 City Centre Park Langford, 250/391-1738 Ages 5–15 Coastal Bliss Adventures Summer Kids Camps Cowichan Bay, 250/715-0034 Ages 9–18 Fun Seekers and Adventure Kids Camp Esquimalt Rec Centre 250/412-8500 programsRegistration Ages 6–12

FUN Camps – Friends Uniting for Nature Victoria, Esquimalt, Westshore 250/891-1067 Ages 6–16 Kids Klub School Summer Camps Multiple locations 250/881-1223 Ages 5–12 Lux Mundi Summer Program Christ Church Cathedral School Victoria, 250/383-5125 Ages 5–11 Oak and Orca Summer Camp Victoria, 250/383-6609 ages 5–12 SMS Summer Camps St. Margaret’s School Victoria, 250/479-7171 Girls ages 5–13 St Michael’s University School Victoria, 250/370-6120 Ages 5–15 Summerscope Day Camp Crystal Pool & Fitness Centre 250/361-0732 Ages 6–9 Sun Fun The Cridge Centre for Family Victoria, 250/995-6407 Ages 5–12

specialty camps Camp Pringle Shawnigan Lake 250/472-6877 Ages 6–14 Make Camp & Fashion Camp Victoria, 778/430-MAKE (6253) Ages 8–17 Ocean Adventures Deep Bay Marine Field Station Nanaimo, 250/740-6611 Age 6–12 Royal BC Museum Summer Camps Victoria, 250/356-7226 Ages 5–14 Science Venture Camps – UVic Science Venture Victoria, 250/721-8661 Ages 6–14 Sewing Camp Bay/Fernwood, 250/592-7879 Ages 7+ Shoots with Roots Daycamps Milner Gardens & Woodland Qualicum Beach, 250/752-8573 shoots-with-roots Ages 6–10 SPCA Kids Camps Victoria, 250/686-1581 summer-camps/ StartUp Skool Victoria, 604/349-8199 Ages 8–16


summer camp guide Summer Camps & Tech Camps Christ Church Cathedral School Victoria, 250/383-5125 ages 8–12

sports Basketball UVic Vikes Recreation Victoria, 250/721-7282 Ages 8–13 The Boulders Climbing Gym Central Saanich 250/544 0310 Ages 5–14 CFSA Summer Learn To Sail Esquimalt, 250/363-1009 @esquimaltsailing (Facebook) (under Sail Training) Ages 4+ Learn to sail at the CF Sailing School – Esquimalt. We have 1 or 2 week courses for all ages in June, July, August. You will enjoy learning with excellent instructors and facilities in our protected harbour. Contact our program coordinator at, or on Facebook @esquimaltsailing. Ezra Soccer Summer Camp Nanaimo, 250/756-5200 Ages 3–13

Falcon Gymnastics Victoria, 250/479-6424 Ages 18 mths–14 yrs

Kids Martial Arts and Fitness Camp Crusher Combat Sports Victoria, 250/478-3596

Golf & Multi Sport Full Day Camps Victoria Golf Club Victoria, 250/598-4321 Ages 12–17

Kids Paddling Victoria, 250/380-0226

Highland Pacific Golf Victoria, 250/478-4653 Ages 6–14 Hockey Training Camps – Behind the Bench Victoria, 250/642-7792 Ages 7–17

Motocross Camp Westshore Motocross Langford, 250/590-8088 Pedalheads Bike Camps Hillside, Saanich and Langford 604/874-6464 Ages 2–12

Jetin’ Extreme Crystal Pool & Fitness Centre Victoria, 250/361-0732 Ages 9–12

Pedalheads Mountain Biking (PHMB) Hillside, Saanich and Langford 604/874-6464 Ages 4–15

Kayaking Camp Ocean River Sports Victoria, 250/381-4233 Ages 10–14

Playzone City Centre Park Victoria, 250/391-1738 Ages 5–15

Kayak Marine Adventure Camps Glenlyon Norfolk School Victoria, 250/370-6852 Ages 11–17

Play Sport – Pacific Institute for Sports Excellence Victoria, 250/220-2510


Oak Bay Figure Skating Rink Ratz Oak Bay, 250/744-6603 Ages 4–10 Riding and Farm Camp Echo Ridge Stables Victoria, 250/857-6710 Ages 4–14 Rink Ratz Camps Oak Bay Figure Skating Club Oak Bay, 250/744-6603 Ages 4–10 Royal Soccer Victoria 800/427-0536 The Royal Soccer Club is celebrating its 25th annual summer grassroots soccer day camps‌ #1 grassroots soccer camp in Canada. Open to boys & girls aged 5 to 13, we offer over 18 locations across British Columbia region during July and August. Visit for more details or call 1-800/427-0536. Sailing – Royal Victoria Yacht Club 250/592-6113 Ages 7–17 Synchronized Swimming Summer Camp – Victoria Synchro jennifervicsynchro@gmail.

Messy Summer Fun 17 Activities for an Unforgettable Vacation at Home By Christina Katz


ummer is coming and you know what that means, right? Long, unstructured days punctuated by “I’m bored,� and “There’s nothing to do.� Which really means kids are tired of doing all of the same things and they crave new activities they can feel excited about. This is the perfect opportunity for messy fun to swoop in for the emotional rescue this summer. After all, what could be more festive than a little bit of parent-approved pandemonium? So never fear, because the key to milking the most fun out of any summer vacation is including more messy fun in the mix. So this summer, why not try a new messy activity each week? In fact, you may as well get the whole neighborhood involved. Just be prepared for your house to become the most popular summer hangout spot on the block. Here are seventeen messy activities that will keep the kids smiling outdoors or indoors without breaking the bank.

Fill a store-bought piĂąata two-thirds of the way full with cooked, well-drained spaghetti. Then add small plastic toys, foil-wrapped granola bars, and plastic wrapped candies. To extend the fun, hang the piĂąata on a pull cord threaded through an eyehook so you can pull it up and down as kids swing at it with a bat or broom handle. Secure a tarp underneath with duct tape (indoors) or camping stakes (outdoors) for easy cleanup.

2. Take a whack at it.

3. Eggcentric art. Break the tops off real eggs and pour the yolks and whites into Tupperware to make quiche or a soufflĂŠ later. Keeping empty shells in the carton, fill each with acrylic paints of various colors. Outside or in the garage or basement, hang a large canvas against a sturdy wall or fence and let the kids take aim and fire until they make a masterpiece. Use plastic drop cloths to catch the splatters as needed.

struction. If you can mount a few hula hoops strategically around the room, they come in handy. You might also supply bandanas and bungee chords. Be sure to inspect the results for hazards. Keep food and drinks strictly separate. 6. Reach for the foam. Play messy Twister in the yard by putting foam shaving cream mixed with food coloring on the coloured dots on the Twister mat. Wear clothing that can get stained. If no one wants to worry about clothing stains, simply use white shaving cream for the same effect.

Make about a gallon of chocolate pudding. Drop large spoonfuls of pudding onto a Slip & Slide. Have children

7. Pudding slide.

Make natural facial masks out of banana, avocado or cocoa. Sit kids around a large table in pairs to take turns applying masks to each other’s faces. Be sure to have some hand mirrors handy so everyone can see what all the squeals are about.

4. Franken-beauty.

Mark off a square play arena outdoors with five-foot tall bamboo garden stakes and blue painters masking tape. Fill squirt guns or squirt bottles with non-toxic watercolor paints, don a pair of clear swim goggles, and let the kids decorate each other dressed in white t-shirts and leggings or sweats. The only rule is no one leaves the field until all the paint is spent. 1. Take aim, color.

5. Construction junction. Supply lots of sheets, blankets and pillows for fort con-




take a running start down a low-grade slope. To make slide more slippery, have kids sprinkle it with water from a sprinkler can or set the hose sprayer to mist. Add more pudding or water, as needed. Find an online recipe to make nontoxic slime and let kids prepare it. Then play a game of hide the bouncy ball in the slime. Use a blindfold and a timer to see who can find their toys the fastest. Enjoy the groans.

8. Slime ball.

9. Picasso footsie. Roll out a long sheet of paper and pour puddles of acrylic paint at one end. Have each child step in one color per foot and walk across the paper. Switch to the other side of the paper to balance out the look. Trim and hang art on a fence or wall to dry. 10. Musical silly string. Put half the group in the middle on a plastic tarp. Encircle them with the other half of the group. Turn on the music. Have the inside group move in one direction and the outside group move in the other direction,

while spraying the inside group with silly string. When the music is turned off, switch groups. Cook one box of spaghetti per participant. Get some fivegallon buckets and fill them two-thirds of the way with water. Add enough flour to thicken the water, then add cooked spaghetti. The only rules are: use your own spaghetti, no bucket-dumping, and no touching—just throwing. Put them in the square play arena and get the heck out of the way.

11. Pasta fling.

On a sturdy table at playing height, fill a small kiddie pool with dirt and just enough water to make mud. Add digging and pouring toys for an hour of industry for young kids.

12. Mud puddle fun.

13. Duck-Duck-Dump. Have kids sit in circle for a game of Duck-Duck-Goose. But first, hand them a cup of water and a half-cup of flour to pour over each goose’s head.

14. The opposite of tiny bubbles. Make bubble mix with ten cups of regular Dawn Dish soap and five gallons of water. Let it sit overnight. Do not agitate the solution as you pour it into a small wading pool slightly larger than a Hula Hoop in diameter. Have one child don a pair of clear goggles and stand in the middle of the pool without splashing. Let two kids lower a Hula Hoop over him and then pull it straight up into a giant bubble.

Set up a start and finish line for a short jaunt. Tie the legs of two kids together and have them wear clear swim goggles and white play clothing. Have other kids stand on the sidelines and throw color from bags of nontoxic Holi colors (the type used for Color Runs, available online). Repeat until everyone has run. The most colorful pair wins.

15. Three-legged color run.

Divide children into two groups. Put a line across the center on your play arena. Everyone has to stay on their own side and wear swim googles. Place a table of supplies within reach of the

16. Sloppy volley.

backcourt on each side. On the table, supply large bowls of chilled mashed potatoes, Jello, pudding, and cooked oatmeal. Tint food with food coloring if clothing can be stained. On your mark, get set, food fight! For a couple of months, don’t discard your reusable recyclables. Spread them out evenly in tarps with plenty of clear tape, masking tape, painter’s tape, and duct tape. Pair kids up into design

17. Trashion runway.

teams. Give a time limit like one hour. The assignment is to design a runway-worthy fashion for each team out of only the trash that’s been supplied. Have a runway show afterwards to display the results. Like most parents, #HRISTINA+ATZ first instinct is not necessarily to choose the messiest activity. But her desire to let kids have fun usually prevails.

BEST BIRTHDAY EVER. Hosting a kid’s birthday has never been easier. You make the guest list, we’ll take care of the packages for up to 10 guests, include invitations, lunch, and access to more than 35 rides and attractions, including DIZZY DROP.


May 5 ‘til Sep 16 BCPARENTCAsSUMMER23

Kid Blogging: A Summer Writing Project

by Christa Melnyk Hines


oes your child have a particular passion that could be explored more through writing or photography? Blogging is an educational way for kids to practice their writing and research skills over the summer while interacting with a receptive audience at the same time.

Take a cue from teachers. Pernille Ripp, a 5th grade teacher, introduced blogging to her students four years ago. She says the response has been overwhelmingly positive. “Parents love that it provides them with a look into what is happening with their child in school and what their child is thinking. It also allows extended family to be part of the learning conversation. My students love it because of the conversation it starts and the ideas they can get from others,� she says. Why blog? Not only are kids learning to write to a target audience, they are enhancing their writing skills in the process. “I’ve seen the rates of student writing really increase,� says Sue Gorman, a K–12 Innovation Learning Consultant. “You aren’t just turning this [writing assignment] into your teacher, you are turning this in as a global writer, a global thinker.�


Get to know blogging. If you aren’t sure how blogging works, open an account and play around with the platform. Learn how privacy settings work and familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions associated with the platform. Explore blogs your child likes. If your child is interested in art

Gather a few of your child’s friends who also like to write and encourage them to start a blog together.

or photography explore some professional artist and photographer blogs. Consider what you and your child find attractive about these sites.

Blog options. For the under 12 crowd,

Kidzworld offers a safe, moderated platform for kids to blog with parental consent. Your child could also blog through a free platform like Blogger or Wordpress, however both platforms require that users are 13 and over. In this case, you might want to create a family blog that you facilitate. Make the blog private and invite family and friends to follow. Since posts can still be forwarded (and nothing posted online is truly private), you’ll still want to be careful about your child revealing too much personal information. (More on that shortly.) Tumblr, Twitter and Instagram are especially popular among teens. These are “shortform multi-media� blogging sites. Members post photos, video and short posts. (Due to some of the content, these social media sites are not suggested for kids younger than 13.)

When is a good age to start blogging?

Whether a child is ready for blogging or any other type of social media really depends on your child and her maturity level. Some teachers start kids blogging as early as second and third grades to flex their writing muscles with an encouraging audience. Educators use carefully moderated and secure sites like

Community blogs. Gather a few of your child’s friends who also like to write and encourage them to start a blog together. They can take turns posting and responding to each other’s work. Unsure where to begin? Focus your

child on a particular topic or passion.

Does she love to read? Encourage her to create an online book club where she posts reviews of different books she reads. Teach her how to link to the book and the author. If your child loves photography, have him take pictures and create a photo blog.

the phone and turn off the location services under your camera app. At least at first, review her posts before they go live to make sure she isn’t inadvertently sharing information that could put her personal safety or identity at risk. Discourage your child from using the blog like a private journal. He should ask

Safety considerations. Naturally, your

child’s safety will be top of mind. Create a digital citizenship contract with your child to clarify your rules, expectations and consequences. Have your child sign the contract. Talk about the types of information she should never share like: UĂŠĂ•Â?Â?ĂŠÂ˜>“iĂŠÂ­ĂƒÂ…iĂŠVÂœĂ•Â?`ĂŠVÂ…ÂœÂœĂƒiĂŠ>ĂŠÂ˜ÂˆVŽ˜>“iĂŠ instead of using her real first name if that makes you more comfortable) UĂŠ9i>Ă€ĂŠÂœvĂŠLÂˆĂ€ĂŒÂ… UĂŠ/Â…iĂŠÂ˜>“iĂŠ>˜`ĂŠÂ?ÂœV>ĂŒÂˆÂœÂ˜ĂŠÂœvĂŠÂ…iĂ€ĂŠĂƒV…œœÂ?ĂŠÂ­ÂˆÂ˜cluding photos) UĂŠœ“iĂŠ>``Ă€iĂƒĂƒ If she includes a photo of herself, make sure it doesn’t leave a digital footprint that reveals your location. Turn off geotagging by going into your privacy settings on your

If he includes a photo of himself, make sure it doesn’t leave a digital footprint that reveals your location.

himself questions like, “Am I okay with Grandma or my teacher seeing this? Would I be embarrassed if my friends at school read this?� Post an email account on the site that goes to you first so you can review any correspondence that individuals are sending. This is a good way for you to filter meanspirited emails that your child doesn’t need


to see. You might also show him examples of what spam and phishing emails look like. Set up privacy settings to approve comments before they are posted. Hopefully, your child won’t receive negative comments, but discuss the best ways to handle these types of scenarios and encourage your child to come to you first before responding, especially if she is upset or isn’t sure how to manage the issue. Freelance journalist #HRISTA -ELNYK (INES is the mom of two digitally-charmed boys. She is the author of Happy, Healthy & Hyperconnected: Raise a Thoughtful Communicator in a Digital World.


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The ability to learn languages is highest between birth and age 6. Our French-English preschool program maximizes a child’s natural curiosity and ability to learn a second language during this important window of opportunity.

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You can teach your kids important money management skills by giving them a regular allowance. But how do you ensure that they end up learning what you want them to learn? What are the most important dos and don’ts when it comes to giving your kids an allowance?

Dos and Don’ts of Giving Your Kids an Allowance By Tanni Haas Communicate Clear Expectations for Spending, Saving, and Giving

It’s important to communicate clear expectations for what your kids are supposed to do with their allowance. Experts agree that if you want to teach your kids about the value of money and also encourage them to become caring human beings, then require them to divide the allowance into three parts: spending, saving, and giving. “This is an excellent way to expose them to the three most important things they can do with their money,� says Brad Munson, a personal finance expert, “and it’s a lesson that can last a lifetime.� Come to a mutual agreement about how much money they are allowed to spend, how much they are supposed to save, and

find a charity that they truly care about. As Susan Borowski, the author of Money Crashers puts it, having kids “choose the charity of their choice will make them more likely to set aside the money. Just like we give to charities that matter to us, children also need to give to a charity that matters to them, or they won’t be motivated to do it.� Use the Allowance to Inspire Regular Conversations about Money Management

Think of the allowance not primarily as a means of making money available to your kids, but rather as a way to inspire regular conversations with them about money management. Kimberly Palmer, the author of Smart Mom, Rich Mom, says to “worry

less about how much you give than that you use the allowance as a chance to talk to your children about money.� “The whole point,� says Mrs. Palmer, “is to get them used to handling and talking about money so it’s not so much the amount as the conversation around it that matters.� Neale Godfrey, a personal finance expert and author of more than two dozen books on financial literary, puts it well: “Talking to your kids about allowance and money is just as important as giving it.� Mr. Godfrey is right—research shows that the more kids discuss money management with their parents as they grow up, the better they become at managing their own finances as adults.


Be Consistent, but Regularly Review your Allowance Policies

However you decide that your kids should allocate their allowance, be consistent about your allowance policies and only change them if you have very good reasons to do so, like if you simply can’t afford the current amount or your kids are not spending it in the agreed upon ways. As Dr. Mary Kelly Blakeslee, a well-known child psychologist, says, “nothing bothers kids more than unfairness. If you change the rules without a good reason, you’re reneging on a contract. While children need to learn that life isn’t always fair, you can still respect your children’s feelings by explaining why you have to decrease their allowance or postpone payment and let them know you can understand their annoyance or disappointment.� Mr. Munson agrees: “Consistency builds trust, reduces bargaining, and encourages planning for the future.� Don’t Tie the Allowance to the Performance of Regular Household Chores

Don’t tie the allowance to regular household chores. Doing so is wrong for several


reasons: 1) it defeats the very idea that being part of a family entails that one has certain responsibilities; 2) it encourages your kids to bargain every time you ask them to do something around the house; and 3) your kids may even stop doing their chores once they feel they have enough money. Experts say to only offer your kids extra money for tasks you otherwise would have paid someone else to do like, say, mowing the lawn or painting the house. Mr. Godfrey suggests that parents carefully distinguish between what he calls “citizen-of-the-household chores,� for which they shouldn’t get paid, and “work-for-pay chores,� for which it makes sense to give them some extra money. Don’t Use the Allowance as Punishment or Reward

Finally, an allowance should be used to teach kids money management and not as punishment or reward. An allowance, says Mr. Munson, “is supposed to develop greater trust and better communication and cooperation, so using it as an unexpected disciplinary tool will just make you

look cruel and arbitrary in the eyes of your children (no matter how much they might seem to deserve it). Find another way to make your point while living up to the original bargain.� Nevin Martell, a financial planner, agrees, “Using money as a yo-yo— ‘I don’t like this or I don’t like that, so I’m going to cut your allowance’— is not going to help them form a healthy relationship with money.� Similarly, don’t use the allowance to reward your kids for unrelated accomplishments. “Giving your kids money as a reward,� says Joseph Hogue, a certified financial planner, “establishes the mentality that you only need to do things if you’re getting paid.� Instead, suggests Mr. Hogue, “let them pick the family outing for the week or just tell them how proud you are of their accomplishment.� 4ANNI (AAS is a Professor in the Department of Speech Communication Arts & Sciences at the City University of New York – Brooklyn College. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son.

Summer Essentials


Summer is fast approaching! We’ve put together a list of items that are a must have to help you get through the coming months.

Post-beach Bath Toys With all the fun being outside, it’s sometime tough to convince your kids to come in and get clean. The Yookidoo Submarine Spray Station is a great way to help convince them. Bath toys aren’t just for babies! This best seller multi award-winning, battery-operated bath toy draws water from the tub and magically streams flow through the diver shower head. Water flow can be directed into the water activity center to generate a chain reaction of surprising magical water effects. Features jet sprinklers, a spinning propeller, and rotating water gauge. Submarine doubles as a hand shower too! Age range:nYEARS Retails for:  Available at: YOOKIDOOCOMPRODUCT SUBMARINE SPRAY STATION

Hours of Outdoor Fun Why build a treehouse when you can hang one up and turn your yard into a canopy of fun? Made to be suspended over the ground, but in dry conditions it can also be pitched on the ground like a conventional tent. It is the ideal portable treehouse that avoids most planning restrictions. There is an art to finding the location, but the Tentsile has loads of instructional information to help you create your floating treehouse. With the Tentsile tree tent the sky really is the limit for family fun! Retails for: $258 and up Available at:



All-terrain Shoes For closed-toe sandals that’ll help keep them on their feet during a game of Red Rover, go for Kamik’s SEATURTLE sandals. The adjustable straps make it easy to achieve a snug fit. Plus, these sandals for kids have a waterproof upper and a quick-drying, moisturewicking lining, so you can feel free to bring on the water play. Retails for: Available at:KAMIKCOM

Space Saving Water Bottle Hydaway Bottle – Leaving the water bottle at home can be frus-

trating. These BPA-free, food-grade silicone bottles are great for always having in the beach bag. The Hydaway Bottle is taste-free, odor-free, leakproof and dishwasher safe. It has a grippy design that is ideal for children’s hands. Retails for:  Colour Combos: #OOL"REEZE (OT,AVAAND6ERY"ERRY Available at: WWWHYDAWAYBOTTLECOM

Visit to read about our experiences with these great products.



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[ Life Like No Other ] 32BCPARENTCAsSUMMER

BC Parent Summer 2018  

Summer holiday is fast approaching so now is the time to start planning how to fill the eight weeks. Will you take a holiday? Book in some s...

BC Parent Summer 2018  

Summer holiday is fast approaching so now is the time to start planning how to fill the eight weeks. Will you take a holiday? Book in some s...