C a p e
To w n â€™ s
b e s t
g u i d e
f o r
pa r e n t s
health checks you should be having
super foods for your shopping basket
encouraging curiosity and creativity in our children
health & wellness april holiday fun
what to do and where to go
Hunter House PUB L IS H ING
Sometimes I think that my health and, to a large extent, the health of my family depends on my ability to say “no”.
Publisher Lisa Mc Namara • firstname.lastname@example.org
Editorial Managing Editor Marina Zietsman • email@example.com Features Editor Elaine Eksteen • firstname.lastname@example.org
Sadly my inability often leads to a grumpy husband, denied or over-indulged children and absolutely no “me time”. Not much of a healthy example I am setting for my daughters. I look around the office and I know this is a shared dilemma. Does the problem lie in our need to please, or our thinking that we can actually do it all – on our own, today? I am reading Dr Kevin Leman’s Born to Win and, although it deals primarily with birth-order issues, the book also touches on the need to please or do it all. His solution is what he calls vitamin N (as in no) and he recommends a boatload of it for all us
Resource Editor Lucille Kemp • email@example.com Copy Editor Debbie Hathway
Art Designers Mariette Barkhuizen • firstname.lastname@example.org Nikki-leigh Piper • email@example.com
PUBLISHER’S PHOTOGRAPH: Brooke Fasani
Lisa Mc Namara • firstname.lastname@example.org
functional firstborns who haven’t yet learnt to use the word. “If you find it hard to say ‘no’, simply say ‘let me think about that’.” This allows you time to be realistic and consider your time and energy constraints. Healthy advice? I think so. Now I am waiting for the next unrealistic teenage request and I’m going to give it a try…
If you love the magazine you’ll love our website. Visit us at childmag.co.za
Taryn Copeman • email@example.com Lisa Waterloo • firstname.lastname@example.org
Cape Town’s Child magazineTM is published monthly by Hunter House Publishing, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. Office address: Unit 7, Canterbury Studios, cnr
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a note from lisa
6 over to you readers respond 8 reader’s blog Bonnie Bester shares tricks for feeding an allergic toddler
features 13 growing nature-lovers great ideas for helping your child get the most out of playing outdoors. By Tracy Ellis
12 ton-sore-litis should infected tonsils be removed? Chareen Boake finds out
there are monsters under my bed! know how to deal with your child’s fears and anxieties. By Joanne Lillie
20 super food some things should always be on your grocery shopping list, says Donna Cobban
9 upfront with paul Paul Kerton believes in one-on-one time with each of his children 10 dealing with difference Lucille Kemp explains life with Tourette’s syndrome
24 resource – health matters health checks parents should be having. By Tamlyn Vincent
22 curious + creative games to boost your child’s questioning skills and lateral thinking. By C.J. Simister
28 a good read new books for the whole family 32 what’s on in april 50 last laugh Sam Wilson introduces us to her SBF (suburban best friend)
classified ads 42 family marketplace 47 it’s party time
this month’s cover images are supplied by:
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over to you
from cover to cover After reading the book reviews in the latest issue of Child magazine, I just had to have a copy of one of the books and went to great lengths to get one. I hope this shows that your magazine is read from cover to cover, and from top to bottom. Thank you for supporting us parents on this amazing journey. Theresa Chapman Our moms and all our teachers (including myself) love your magazine to bits. I don’t know how moms would do it without all your advice and information to help us give our children the best in life. Your magazine is number one! Carien and the teachers and moms at Child Educare Centre, Randpark Ridge
long-term relationship In the seven years I have been advertising with Child magazine, we have had our ups and downs together, but you have always been just a phone call away, ready to listen to yet one more client complaining about how slow business has been. Hardly ever, though, have I phoned to thank you for the many, many successful times. Please give me this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the fantastic job you are doing to ensure that we in our industry are fortunate
enough to have the dedicated voice of Child magazine to help us promote our businesses. I know business will soon be back on track, but please know that I am eternally grateful for the personal attention you have given me. I suppose there is a lot one can say about loyalty then. From a loyal supporter and a big fan of Child magazine, Theo le Roux, Mural Maniac
practical fundraising In your February issue you published fundraising ideas for schools. These are fun and creative, however, many of them also require large amounts of energy, usually from parents and staff. In these cases, when you balance the financial rewards with the real costs, not much money is raised. Here are some practical fundraising ideas: 1. Get parents and students to research where past students are, and set up a proper alumni-funding programme. Most past students will gladly give to their old school. 2. Set up an endowment fund for the school. Money raised like this cannot be used, only the interest can. In this way schools start raising money like universities do. 3. Schools could join up and collaborate by paying professional fundraisers. The biggest spend from
corporate companies’ social responsibility budgets is on education – just approach them in a professional manner and follow the right procedures. Charles Masiel
erratum In the February issue of Child magazine, we reviewed various Dawsan’s Maths books by S. Edwards and D. Williams. We mistakenly listed the publisher as Penguin Tutoring. The correct publisher is Kendall & Strachan Printers. Penguin Tutoring introduces these books to learners, parents and teachers.
write to us We would like to know what’s on your mind. Send your letters to: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also post a comment online at
or PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. We reserve the right to edit and shorten submitted letters. The opinions reflected here are those of our readers and are not necessarily held by Hunter House Publishing.
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giveaways in april fit mom Preggi Bellies is an exercise programme for pregnant and postnatal mothers; it is effective in that it incorporates cardiovascular, strength and pelvic floor training. Developed over the last 10 years and in accordance with the latest international research and gynaecological guidelines, it has seen more than 14 000 moms enjoy its benefits. Preggi Bellies enables a fitter, stronger you during pregnancy and faster recovery after birth. Decide for yourself by contacting Preggi Bellies for a medical screening and a no-obligation introductory class. Contact 0860 723 559, 021 552 1414 or for more info visit preggibellies.co.za or facebook.com/preggibellies One reader of Cape Town’s Child stands a chance to win a Preggi Bellies exercise course valued at R2 900. To enter, email your details to friends@ preggibellies.co.za with “Childmag CT Win” in the subject line before 30 April 2011. Only one entry per reader.
brush up Brushing teeth with new Sonicare For Kids is fun and, more importantly, guarantees a deeper, squeakier clean. Suitable for children four to 10 years old, Sonicare For Kids is clinically proven to remove more plaque than manual or electric toothbrushes. KidTimer and KidPacer features play musical tones, which work like a dream to encourage children to brush for the full two minutes recommended by dental professionals. Sonicare For Kids is available from dentists and Dis-Chem or contact IVOhealth on 0860 456 123, info@ ivohealth.co.za or visit ivohealth.co.za Two readers of Cape Town’s Child stand a chance to win a Sonicare For Kids toothbrush valued at R795 each. To enter, email your details to email@example.com with “Childmag CT Win” in the subject line before 30 April 2011. Only one entry per reader.
congratulations to our February winners Pamela Kistan, Sharon Machanzi and Lize Bernardu who each win a Get Fit with Mel B; Jenny Mauchan who wins with Leapster Explorer; Ricardo Claasen who wins an Ideal Toy hamper; Nazreen Saban who wins a Miki Clothing voucher; Tanya Holtzhausen, Bonnie Seini, Nicola Shepstone, Anne de Koker, Teri Jansen, Ingemar Janse van Rensburg and Loveleena Tayenaigum Chinien who each win a Kellogg’s hamper.
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in disguise BONNIE BESTER discovers a number of tricks for negotiating the challenges of feeding an allergic
be so early. She was just 19 months old when the testing began. We were driving back from a family holiday and I had just given my older girls a breakfast bar to snack on when our baby started performing. I offered her every snack in her box before I realised what the performance was all about. She wanted what her sisters were eating. The only problem was: the breakfast bars were so full of dairy that a single bite would have sent her into a snot spiral that would have lasted for days. Thankfully I remembered I had just bought a dairyfree cocoa snack bar so I took a chance. It was brown like her sisters’ ones and I rolled the wrapper down like I had for her sisters. She gave it a serious once over before taking a bite. We looked on with baited breath. Phew. She approved.
Months went by after the breakfastbar incident without any further serious tantrums with regard to what her sisters were eating – until she decided that she needed to have yoghurt like they do every night. Panic struck: a yoghurt? Seriously? No ways! Then I had an idea. I emptied a yoghurt container and filled it with a dairy-free baby dessert and handed it to her. Again, it worked! She ran off to sit with her big sisters as proud as punch that she was also devouring a “yoghurt”. One of my tricks for navigating her first festive season was to open the advent calendar I had bought for her, and replace each of the chocolates with a jelly sweet she could have. With this tiny adjustment, all three of my girls got to squeal with delight when they opened
the little windows and ate a sweet straight after breakfast each morning. We have explained to our older girls that their baby sister can’t eat everything that they can and they understand, and I am slowly but surely building my list of “alternative” foods. Visit childmag.co.za/content/ alternative-foods for Bonnie’s handy list of “alternative” foods.
Readers, this is your column – it’s a space to air your views, share a valuable parenting lesson, vent your frustrations or celebrate your joys. Send your writing to firstname.lastname@example.org
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he toughest part for me as a parent of an allergic child has been that I have older twins who are not allergic and were able to eat anything we thought fit for the first four years of their lives. Then our youngest came along. She was diagnosed with a dairy allergy, soy intolerance and immune deficiency. Even though her allergies are not life threatening, we soon realised our older children’s lives would also be affected. We have however tried to keep this impact to a minimum. Sure it’s not always easy – the resources we have locally and the allergen-free food we have available to us in SA are minimal. But we’re finding our way. We knew our littlest would one day want the forbidden food her sisters were eating, but we had no idea it would
child with two non-allergic siblings.
upfront with paul
one-on-one PAUL KERTON recommends time alone with your child.
PHOTOGRAPH: MARIETTE BARKHUIZEN
n the corporate world, a one-onone with a staff member for just 15 minutes is priceless and can reveal a monumental amount of previously privy insider info. The real reason for Friday’s disaster in production, where the missing 30k went, and various political and staffing gripes all come bubbling to the surface under the pressure of the spotlight or a seemingly innocent bonding moment. With children a one-on-one may be less formal but the information is no less crucial. Why Daughter One fell out with her best friend. Why she hates wearing leggings. Who said what to whom at Daughter Two’s birthday party, and why she really hates maths. It’s the “really” that is critical. There is always a real reason behind the alleged reason. And sitting with a child, just idly chatting without anybody else present, provides enormous insight. It is something we don’t do often enough. We all have various personalities. Learned psychology professionals will
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define them more accurately, but when I was working on a teenage girl’s magazine we talked to the following: the personality they show to their parents/elders, another personality they show to their peer group and a third, which is their private self, who they are when alone in their bedroom. My daughters definitely show a different personality when they are with me alone than they do en famille. We’ve always tended to do everything together, but recently I’ve tried a different tack and warmed to the idea of spending precious one-on-one time with each of them. The difference is a breath of fresh air – they both blossom in their own way and their true personality (or certainly nearer to it) shines through. They appear more mature and eloquent and make more of an effort to communicate. There is no shouting to be heard. It also saves on the giant compromise each has to make with regard to how we spend the time. “Let’s do X”, I say. “Great,” says one, excited. “No, that’s boring,” says the other. “Okay, let’s do Y.” Same reaction in reverse.
Saskia, Paul and Sabina
Over the last year, with a gap of six years, the difference between the two has become marked. Saskia, 11, thinks she is 21; she is interested in fashion, Style Network, shopping and Justin Bieber. Sabina is more interested in wobbly-headed plastic pets, Disney Channel, dressing-up and having pillow fights. Both are skilled on the computer but while Sabina tries hard, Saskia is always way ahead of her sister. Consequently, when they are together, although they are generally very good
and get on, there is often a niggling undercurrent with them baiting each other, albeit subtly. When each has a friend their own age over, brilliant, you don’t hear a whimper. If either of them doesn’t, then the “gooseberry” irritates the other two and tries to sabotage their fun. That is the perfect time to take the friendless one for a one-on-one. I highly recommend it. Paul Kerton is the author of Fab Dad: A Man’s Guide to Fathering.
dealing with difference
most often misunderstood t first acceptance was difficult for Nelspruit-based mom Sandy Hodges. When she found out her little girl had Tourette’s syndrome (TS), she felt like she had done something wrong. But Sandy couldn’t get stuck there. She was going to need to properly explain to a newly diagnosed six-year-old what was going on with her body, so she set to work schooling herself on her daughter’s condition. “Some children wear glasses, some have big ears, you have TS,” said Mom to Daughter. Today, thanks to her mom’s support, eight-year-old Tanya is comfortable with her TS. So, when her classmates ask: “Why do you do that?” Tanya is able to confidently reply, “I can because I have Tourette’s.”
gaining understanding The US National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke describes Tourette’s syndrome as a developmental neurological disorder – made up of chronic motor and vocal tics – that belongs to the family of movement disorders. While the number of people affected is uncertain, TS is known to affect more boys than girls. Tanya clears her throat, opens and closes her mouth, shrugs her shoulders forward and jerks her head. Lenore Zietsman’s 21-year-old son Hans grimaces, clenches his fists, covers his face with his arms and makes a clucking sound. According to Prof Christine Lochner, a Cape-Town based clinical psychologist who specialises in dealing with TS and its associated disorders, these are common symptoms of TS and are referred to as tics – “multiple, involuntary and brief movements, words and sounds”. Other definitions are more telling; one adult male describes his TS as an “imp” that one day took up residence inside of him. Stellenbosch-based child psychiatrist Dr Sue Hawkridge says, “There is a strong genetic predisposition, with vulnerability to movement disorders being heritable.” It’s not all predetermined though, says
Hawkridge, environmental factors can bring out TS in a child who is already vulnerable to developing the disorder. Medical professionals agree that most children display readily identifiable symptoms of TS around seven years old. Lochner says that the diagnosis of TS is made if the ticcing has been present for at least one year.
not stand alone Tics aside, people with Tourette’s often have a range of issues to deal with (comorbidities or associated disorders). These are mainly OCD, ADHD, mild self-injurious behaviour and learning difficulties, which Lochner says, can be more damaging than the TS itself.
wanting the best for your child Tanya is at a mainstream school and according to her mom copes quite well, though she battles with her handwriting and for this she attends occupational therapy. Hans was at a mainstream private school as he did much better in a smaller class. Mom Lenore says that while Hans found his feet in high school, matriculating with two As and being picked for the first team in all the sports he played, his primary school years had their difficulties. “He knew the answers to sums instinctively, but when he was forced to show the working out, he got frustrated and then made mistakes,” says Lenore. “He struggled to convey on paper what he knew.” Hans showed obsessive compulsive tendencies and could not sit
The best schooling option for a child with Tourette’s is the school where she feels accepted and where she can achieve to her full potential. With Tanya’s obsessive compulsiveness, Sandy and the family go with the flow to avoid the screaming match. “If Tanya’s duvet on her bed is not straight she has a hissy fit, and makes me adjust it until it is perfect. Same with her school socks – they have to be put on her in a certain way, or else...” Lochner tells me that the child that has both TS and ADHD symptoms will very often also experience disruptive behaviour, academic difficulty, peer rejection and family conflict. In addition to these associated disorders, children with TS may experience depression. Lochner has found that rather than trying to eliminate tics, the first goal of treatment should be to maximise the child’s potential at school and in the social setting. “The comorbid disorders are usually treated first, since their successful treatment may reduce tic severity. Physical exercise and good sleeping habits also help,” she says.
still in class in his junior-school years. As a result, teachers suggested Ritalin, advice Lenore is thankful she didn’t take. Hawkridge says that the best schooling option for a child with Tourette’s is simply the school where she feels accepted by her teachers and peers and where she can achieve to her full potential. She goes on to say, “Ideally the presence of Tourette’s syndrome should not dictate the choice of school, but in the real world mainstream schools may not be able to provide the additional input the child may need.”
managing for success “Treatment should be tailored to the individual; each child with Tourette’s is quite different,” says Professor Dan Stein, head of the department of psychiatry at the University of Cape Town and director of the MRC Unit on Anxiety and Stress Disorders. “Once TS symptoms have appeared, a positive emotional environment at home, school and among friends is important in reducing the emotional complications of TS,” says Hawkridge. Alleviating stress is most important in reducing tics,
though relaxation doesn’t always see an improvement in ticcing. “At school Hans managed to control the tics, but when he got home and relaxed on the couch he would tic almost constantly,” says Lenore. The Hodges family limits sugar, colourants and additives in Tanya’s diet as they believe it helps concentration and general behaviour – the Zietsmans followed a similar approach with Hans as a child. There are, says Hawkridge, various behavioural interventions that can help, such as massed practice, relaxation training, habit reversal therapy and response prevention. For Tanya, Sandy has found medication to be most effective, along with a calm, structured environment. Hans, by his doctor’s recommendation, has never been on medication and still achieved at school though Hans’ high IQ (above 130) may have made this possible. Hans found sport to be a great outlet for his tics. “When playing cricket, he learnt to disguise and adapt his tics as imaginary batting strokes,” says Lenore.
straight talk I ask Tanya how her TS makes her feel: “I feel fine! Only thing is when I write at school and I shrug my shoulders it causes me to scribble across my word, then I have to rub out and start again. Oh, and also that I can’t have sweets and chocolates – that really bothers me.” A parting shot from Tanya’s mom? “It has been a long hard journey, but I am determined to create TS awareness out there. As a parent you have to remain positive and supportive, and advocate for your child, especially at their schools.” Lenore says: “I have always tried to put myself in Hans’ shoes – what it must be like being careful not to tic or being unable to prevent the tic – especially in his teenage years, when it was no longer really acceptable to look as if he was batting.” Lenore describes her now adult son as happy and successful. “He is in his final year of BCom studies. He has a wonderful girlfriend, who after having done some research on TS, is perfectly accepting. He is a qualified dive instructor and manages the scuba school at Stellenbosch University.”
finding support • M ental Health Information Centre (for TS and associated disorders): 021 938 9229, email@example.com or visit mentalhealthsa.org.za • Tourette Syndrome Association: tsa-usa.org • Tourette’s support: Nicolette du Toit (Durbanville) 083 292 5481 and Chuki Williams (Somerset West) 082 924 4909 will provide telephonic support and advice to parents on where to go for professional help • Tourette’s syndrome support group Randburg: 011 326 2112 or 082 357 6586
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LUCILLE KEMP chats to two families who know what living with Tourette’s syndrome is all about.
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ton-sore-litis Infected tonsils… should they stay or should they go? CHAREEN BOAKE investigates.
multifactorial; the potential benefits need to be weighed against the potential risks. There are a few absolute indications for a tonsillectomy – generally when there are significant risks if not attended to.” Williams gives the following indicators: • Largely swollen tonsils obstructing swallowing, breathing or both. Obstructive sleep apnoea: when the child stops breathing during sleep. • Complications such as a peritonsillar abscess. • A suspicion that the tonsils could be malignant. • If the tonsillitis is also associated with systematic complications involving the kidneys or heart, or arthritis. • If the tonsillitis reoccurs six to seven times in a year, five or more times in two years or three or more times per year for three years. When asked about the implications of tonsil removal, Dr Williams says “chronically infected tonsils are an additional burden on the child’s immune system. Once removed, that burden is eliminated”. Tonsils and adenoids are the two largest lymphatic organs in the upper respiratory tract, but there are many other collections of lymphatic tissue in the naso- and oropharynx that continue to assist with immunity when the tonsils are removed.
a tonsillectomy – be prepared • Disclose your full medical history to the doctor, especially if either parent is prone to bleeding or has adverse reactions to anaesthetic. • Your child will undergo a general anaesthetic (with an anaesthetist on hand to monitor them) and the op should take 20 to 30 minutes. • Find out from your surgeon if you can stay in theatre until your child has fallen asleep. This is reassuring for young children. • Talk to your child about what they can expect before, during and after surgery. • Let your child take their favourite toy along. Make sure they have it when they fall asleep and when they wake up. • Children have very different reactions to an anaesthetic. They can wake up aggressive, angry or weepy. Prepare yourself for this and make sure that you’re with them when they wake up. • Prepare soft foods and have a ready supply of liquids. Liquids are important after surgery.
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he two small masses of tissue at the back of the throat that fight infection caused by bacteria and viruses are called tonsils. An inflammation of the tonsils is referred to as tonsillitis. The symptoms are swollen red tonsils, a sore throat, pain or discomfort when swallowing, bad breath, a high temperature, swollen neck glands and sometimes a change in the voice. While bacterial infections can be treated with antibiotics, viral infections can only be managed with supportive care, hydration and temperature control. When asked if there’s a way to avoid tonsillitis, Johannesburg-based GP Dr Dorianne Green says it’s “a luck of the draw type illness”. Since tonsillitis is contagious, the nasal fluids from sneezing and droplets of spit from coughing are infectious enough to spread it to others. In order to reduce the risk of tonsillitis, one has to ensure a healthy immune system by eating fresh fruit and vegetables, staying away from infected people, regularly washing hands and not using the same eating utensils as an infected person. It’s also a good idea to replace toothbrushes after a bout of tonsillitis to avoid reinfection. Cape Town-based ear, nose and throat specialist Dr Sharon Williams says, “a decision to do a tonsillectomy is
growing nature-lovers Our children are becoming increasingly disconnected from nature as they spend less time outdoors. TRACY ELLIS gives tips on changing this – and why it’s so important.
hat does a stone taste like?” he said. It was the strangest question my husband had ever asked me. “You don’t have to answer,” he said, “but if you think about it hard enough, you do know.” He was right. At some point in my toddler life I must have licked a stone and while I couldn’t recall a specific memory or taste, I understood what he was getting at. The most random outdoor encounters we have as children are filed away in our brains, and add to our sensory catalogue. This is exactly why children are supposed to connect with nature and, in the most random, unstructured ways, engage all five senses. The texture of a gritty stone on the tongue, the chirp of a cricket in the grass and the tickle of a ladybird crawling up your arm just before she vibrates
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her wings and flies away, are a few of the experiences every child should have. Sadly many of them haven’t and probably won’t without some intervention. Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder, and chairman of the Children & Nature Network writes: “…the way children understand and experience nature has changed radically. Today, children are aware of the global threats to the environment – but their physical contact, their intimacy with nature, is fading.” Various international studies have indicated that outdoor activity among children is rapidly declining. This indoor migration is causing great concern among parents, doctors and researchers worldwide, who are finding a
concerning correlation between the decrease in outdoor activity and the increase in childhood obesity, ADHD, depression and other physical and mental disorders.
nature’s cure Lauren Coombe, a Durban-based CA and mother of two, recalls how a connection with nature transformed her son Troy. “When Troy was three years old his teacher observed him sitting on his back rather than his bum at ring time. She recommended that we have him assessed for low muscle tone. During a rustic three-week holiday, he befriended a seven-year-old boy who was a native to the area. For three weeks Troy ran barefoot and wild while his new friend taught him to climb trees, suck on long
fear and other factors
grass stems, cross the stony river and skim stones across the dam. By the end of the holiday he had a new body. I realised that he was not being physical enough at home and I had to get off my own behind and get my children moving outside in the afternoons. Now he is a lean but strong little boy and we have not heard the words ‘low muscle tone’ again.” Experts agree that nature provides the perfect physical and mental training ground for growing strong, healthy bodies and minds. Nature Rocks, a US programme to inspire and empower families to play and explore in nature, claims that families and children who play in nature are happier, healthier and smarter. They go on to claim they are less stressed, more confident, more resilient to germs, developmentally advantaged and all with the added bonuses of nature being free and family friendly.
Michaela de Gier, a human movement educator and founder of the Core4Kids programme, says that outdoor play is essential for the development of gross motor skills, preparing the groundwork on which all academic learning will take place. “Children learn best when all five senses are involved. Time spent outdoors where sights, sounds, smells and textures are rich and varied, gives children an understanding of their world. Perception is the ability of the brain to interpret messages received through the senses. Perceptual development begins at an early age and a child’s perceptual skills may suffer if much of his learning depends on computers, video, television or other media. Most of these learning methods require only two senses,” she says. “Outdoor play also enhances a child’s intellectual and cognitive development. Nature provides endless prospects for exploration and discovery, enhancing creativity and nourishing imaginations.”
Dr Jim Taylor, director of education at WESSA (The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa), believes that our children are living in a virtual, self-indulgent reality and need to get outside more often and have what he calls “reality encounters”. “If you ride a bicycle too fast and fall off you learn something about failure, but with television and computer games if you fail you just press reset and start again. What happens is children can’t cope with failure in the real world.” Coombe believes that screens and safety are some of the factors keeping our children inside. She believes shutting down indoor magnets, such as TVs and computers, is a huge part of the solution in getting children to opt for the outdoors, but she acknowledges this is easier said than done. “Saying no to indoor technology is difficult for busy parents. TV is an easy boredom buster, so we give in too quickly. We also live in a world of crime, which prevents us from cutting the umbilical cord and letting our children go. It is important to satisfy yourself that your outdoor areas are safe so you can let them play outside without worrying,” she says. With the decks clearly stacked in favour of Mother Nature, parents and educators have a responsibility to foster child-nature connections wherever possible. Here are some suggestions:
facilitate the nature-child connection • Lead by example: hold a frog without squirming, try a forest canopy tour, brave the icy sea water, choose an outdoor sport or just spend 20 minutes a day on a blanket in the garden. Your children will follow your lead.
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• Start a nature club. Meet regularly with a group of friends in public gardens, nature reserves and parks for unstructured play-in-nature time. Visit childrenandnature.org which has a downloadable kit on how to start a family nature club. • Have a neighbourhood nature show-and-tell party. Ask children to collect and bring their most interesting nature finds (birds nests, snail shells or feathers) and then discuss these objects. • Compulsory outdoor time. Limit screen time to an hour a day or keep it off limits Monday to Thursday. You don’t always have to produce an action plan. Just declare outside time and let them improvise. • Keep a family nature journal. Glue feathers, seed pods, leaves and dried flowers into a large scrapbook and add field notes (date, place found, description, botanical name). • Start a garden. Vegetables, herbs and flowers are rewarding for children and can be grown in the smallest space or in containers. Let children get involved in every aspect from digging to planting, watering and picking the produce themselves. • Take indoor activities outdoors. Eat on the veranda, or under a tree, take toys onto a blanket or lie on the grass and look for shapes in the clouds. • Don’t overprotect. Allow your children to get a little risky with climbing trees, balancing on walls, jumping and acrobatics. Bumps, bruises and scrapes teach them to navigate their world and make them more resilient. • Have nature hunts. Draw pictures of ant hills, spider webs, different shaped leaves and rocks, and send
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them out to see what they can find. No need to hide treats, let nature be the prize. • Go for regular walks but make a point of stopping to enjoy nature on the way. Point out interesting trees, plants, birds and animals as well as sounds and smells. Try to engage all the senses. • Ensure your garden is secure and childproof so that you can let your children explore it for hours with peace of mind.
If you ride a bicycle too fast and fall off you learn something about failure, but with computer games if you fail you press reset and start again. • During (limited) TV time, choose a nature show over a cartoon series. Elephant migration may seem a little over their heads, but the brain stores these “random” facts and one day they may just use them. • Welcome dirt. Allow your children to literally “play in the mud”. Give them buckets of water and let them get messy. • Take your children on nature trails, day hikes and bush walks when they are young. They may initially battle with long grass, steep hills and endurance but perseverance pays off.
• If you live on the coast, visit the beach often. Swim in the ocean, explore rock pools and breathe the salty air. • Adopt a park. Get together with families in your area and agree to adopt an unloved public park in your neighbourhood. Pitch together to clear litter and maintain facilities. Petition your municipality to upgrade facilities or at least to work with your group to make the park a safe place to play. (Visit childmag.co.za/articles/park-nplay for more on adopting a park.) • As children grow older, take part in social or community bike rides, obstacle courses and walks. • Take rustic family holidays: go camping, stay on a working farm or on a wild stretch of beach. • Choose birthday gifts that encourage a love of nature: a telescope, flower press, ant farm or reference books to identify birds and animals – but be sure to get outside and use them. • Set up camp in the garden one night. Pitch a tent, roast marshmallows, name the stars and fall asleep to the sound of crickets chirping. • Aquariums, zoos, nature museums and environmental centres are great but save these for rainy days. The emphasis is on getting outside. • Join organisations such as SA Scout Association, Girl Guides Association of South Africa and WESSA, which facilitate nature discovery through organised outdoor activities and adventures for children. • For more ideas read the monthly suggestions in the “finding nature and outdoor play” section of the Child magazine calendar (see page 37) or visit childmag. co.za/what’s-on/today.
there are monsters under my bed! Every child will experience fear at some stage. Knowing how to deal with
er older girls started to fear monsters at age four. “They suddenly needed the light on and the door open at night,” says Bonnie Bester (33), an entrepreneur from Cape Town, and mom to twins Abigail and Kiara (5), and Jessica (21 months). “I obliged because to them their fears were very real and I didn’t want to dismiss that,” she says. Childhood fears are extremely common and most children experience phases of anxiety every day – or imagined things at some point. “Anxiety is very much a part of the human condition, and at different developmental points it can actually be quite useful,” says Dr Wendy Duncan, child psychiatrist at the Child and Family Unit of the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital.
“A wariness of strangers, for instance, can protect your child from harm. Sometimes a level of anxiety is instinctive and tells a child to be cautious and return to her caregiver. In older children, anxiety over performance can drive them to try harder and achieve, so anxiety is appropriate and necessary at certain points. Children who don’t develop a sense of fear can be quite vulnerable,” says Dr Duncan. But it is important to help your child manage her fears properly at the time they arise, so that they are not amplified or taken into adulthood. “It’s also important that we don’t always reassure children that their fears will never happen; they might. Instead, we have to raise their belief in their inner strength to cope,” says Johannesburg-based educational psychologist Nadia Louw.
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your child’s anxieties can make all the difference. By JOANNE LILLIE
for 2- to 10-year-olds: • A fear of the dark is particularly common up to age five or six and a night-light will often do the trick. “Help your child look for her strengths by asking her about a time she wasn’t scared of the dark, and what powers she had within herself to overcome her fear in that instance that she can use the next time,” suggests Louw. • A fear of monsters is usually shortlived. “I used to pretend to catch the monsters, wrap them in a blanket and throw them out the window or door. I made such a big drama doing all of this, my daughters were in fits of giggles and the monster problem very quickly went away,” says Bonnie. This type of approach is particularly helpful because young children need very practical, tangible ways to deal with fear as they cannot deal effectively with abstract concepts yet, explains Justine Bartlett, a clinical psychologist from Durban. “Another way is to ask children to draw a picture of what is scaring them. This allows them to visualise their fear and makes
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it more real. Then get them to tear up the picture and jump on it and squash it,” says Bartlett. “Whatever your child’s fear, telling them that they are being silly, that there is nothing to be scared of, or that they shouldn’t worry, does not make them feel heard. Allow children to express their fears and concerns openly, and acknowledge their feelings,” says Louw.
• Particular animals, like dogs or snakes, often cause small children to worry, and this is within the spectrum of normal development, say experts. “Gradual exposure is imperative in order to stop this fear becoming something more severe or lifelong. Try introducing your child slowly to the company of little dogs at a distance and then gradually get closer and closer, then progress to bigger dogs at closer
I used to pretend to catch the monsters… and throw them out the door. I made such a big drama my daughters were in fits of giggles. • A fear of strangers serves a purpose and can be managed through your example. Greet strangers politely but don’t engage in long-winded conversations. In any fearful situation, breathing and relaxation techniques can help: “Teach your child to take deep breaths and visualise a safe, happy space if they start to panic,” suggests Louw.
range,” suggests Bartlett. “It won’t help your child to remove her quickly from a situation she is scared of. If you visit a friend with a large dog, call ahead to ensure the dog is contained. When you arrive take your child to see the dog and reassure her. Work towards getting them to eventually touch the dog or letting the dog out so they can just be in the presence
when to worry While some fear is normal, concern is warranted if anxiety affects your child’s everyday life. If his functioning at school – academic and social – is impacted, you might need to seek help, says Duncan. For example, if your child develops an extreme aversion to germs it might be a stage – but when your child can’t leave the house on time because she’s washing her hands repeatedly, or doesn’t want to touch the school desk, this is more than a quirk, and needs professional attention. The South African Depression and Anxiety Group offers a free 24-hour counselling service, and can refer you to a child therapist in your area. Contact: 0800 20 50 26 (seven days a week, 8am–8pm), sms 31393 or visit sadag.co.za
of the dog,” advises Bartlett. Avoiding dogs altogether reinforces the idea that they are indeed too scary to face. • Fears over crime and trauma permeate down to our young children. Your child’s level of fear depends on his exposure to crime, and on what mom and dad are talking about. Children absorb their parents’ feelings about situations and they pick up on what you say. “Be conscious about discussing adult things in front of children, and of what they’re seeing on TV. Anxieties develop as a result of watching ageinappropriate content,” says Duncan.
or they hide their homework diary – they are trying to tell you it’s too much,” says Duncan. “Overload can be quite harmful, and unstructured play is at least as useful in development as going to loads of classes and formal activities,” she says. • Many children are afraid of losing a parent. “If your child expresses this fear they need a lot of reassurance that you as parents do your utmost to ensure that you are safe and will be there for them, but if something should happen to either of you they need to be told what measures are in place,” says Bartlett. This may seem
It’s also important that we don’t always reassure children that their fears will never happen; they might. Instead, we have to raise their belief in their inner strength to cope. • Even very young children are afraid of not doing well at school. “Instil encouragement without pressure,” advises Duncan. “Achievement and ambition are the order of the day, and adults often live vicariously through their children. We tend to push our children to do more, have more, or be better than we were. Be aware that this sort of pressure is bad for children,” she says. We need to find a balance between creating opportunities and giving them too many. “When children manifest distress – by refusing to do certain things; throwing tantrums when they have to go to ballet; niggling; or when school performance dips
macabre, but is more likely to reassure them than a fabrication. “Never lie to children and tell them not to worry as you’ll always be there for them. This isn’t always in your control. Never minimise a child’s fears and make up stories to allay fear. Be as frank and honest as is appropriate for their developmental age,” advises Bartlett. We should give children a little space to develop their own coping mechanisms too. “We need to encourage our children to explore (within appropriate boundaries) and reassure them of their strengths, rather than constantly warning them about danger, and hovering,” says Louw.
check your own fears “Sometimes fear manifests because of a traumatic experience, but more often it’s when parents’ own anxieties are transferred to their children,” says child psychiatrist Dr Wendy Duncan. As parents, we need to be cognizant of our own feelings, and what we might be instilling in our children. “Anxious children generally have extremely anxious parents,” says Duncan. “Children are all born fearless and research has shown that fear is a completely learnt behaviour. This means that as soon as they are old enough to watch you and learn from your behaviour, they can learn fear. This can happen from as early as six months, but more often from the age of two, when they are starting to develop certain cognitive abilities and are able to understand some level of danger,” says psychologist Justine Bartlett.
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what teens fear most Social exclusion; doing poorly at school; not having the right “stuff”; and looking bad top the list of teenage fears. Anxiety at this age almost always centres around social acceptance. As children develop, their points of reference change from their parents to their teachers to their friends. That’s why at this age, say experts, you can’t underestimate the power of peers. Peer relationships become more important and concerns over these relationships are enormous. Risks associated with the need to fit in include disordered eating habits, substance abuse, and perfectionist behaviour, notes Duncan. So, what can you do? • Name that emotion. “Often we struggle to express our own emotions, but the most important thing we parents can do is to help our young adults name their emotions,” says Duncan. Try: “I can see you are angry about…” or “I understand you are worried because…” Create space to say to your child that if they feel like talking about it, you’re there for them. • Discuss worst-case scenarios. It’s often helpful to talk about the worst thing that can happen in a situation as teenagers often build things up to be far worse in their minds than they are in reality, says Louw. “And as adolescents tend to experience their emotions quite intensely, remain as calm and understanding as possible, and allow your child to vent,” she says. • Set boundaries. Balance is important, and you need to allow them the space to learn to become independent, but still protect them and give them boundaries, says Duncan. “Parents should still set the rules, but there is a process of some negotiation whereby the teenager can make his needs known, and together you can agree on a solution. The currency of adolescence is money, autonomy/ freedom, and peer group – use this to negotiate. For example, your older teenager wants to go out over the weekend with friends, but you want to structure her life. You could say something along the lines of: ‘we have
certain expectations, we need you to do your chores, we need you home during the week by 6pm; then you can go out until 11pm on weekends. If you come home later, we will need to look at whether you’ll go out again’. Curtail her freedom or her phone usage if she’s not acting responsibly.” • Follow through. The agreed consequences must be enforced if there is to be mutual respect, and it’s important for all adults in the house to be consistent and unified in their message. These boundaries are both containing and freeing for young people: “They are free to a point, if they uphold the rules you’ve placed to protect and care for them, as is your parental responsibility,” says Duncan. • Encourage relaxation. Relaxation and techniques such as deep breathing, visualising success and focusing on all their previous successes may assist teenagers in feeling more empowered, suggests Louw. • Watch for stress signals. A teenager might withdraw, change her behaviour, or act out, and this may be a manifestation of something else. Take note of this behaviour, as some more serious anxiety problems (such as generalised anxiety disorders and social phobias) can start in adolescence, says Duncan.
sources Dr Wendy Duncan senior specialist in child psychiatry, Child and Family Unit, Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, Parktown, Johannesburg, firstname.lastname@example.org Nadia Louw (Johannesburg), educational psychologist, email@example.com, 082 785 7601 Justine Bartlett, clinical psychologist (Durban), firstname.lastname@example.org, 031 303 3313
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DONNA COBBAN rounds up some of the essential food items that will go a long way towards ensuring the optimum health of your family.
shopping tip Include whole-wheat flour, bread and pasta, as well as oats, mielies, barley, brown rice and popcorn in your trolley to ensure an optimum intake of whole grains. why? They contain the cereal germ, endosperm, and bran and, because the whole grain is intact, they contain more nutrients and fibre than refined grains. The regular consumption of whole grains can help prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. serving suggestion If you like oats for breakfast try the original Swiss muesli recipe: soak some oats in water overnight, then add chopped fresh fruit, raisins, nuts,
desiccated coconut and a spoonful of yoghurt. It ensures the slow release of glucose into the bloodstream – important for school-going children.
beans and lentils shopping tip Buy the tinned four-bean mix and decant into small containers for a nutritious school snack. Stock up on packets of dried lentils as they are incredibly economical as well as nutritious. why? They are a great source of both kinds of fibre – insoluble fibre, which helps to keep children regular, and soluble fibre, which plays a role in keeping blood sugars stable. They are also rich in protein and are a good source of iron.
serving suggestion Lentils and bean salads are quick and easy. Cook the lentils or beans, grate in a carrot, add some chopped up cucumber and tomatoes, add a handful of sunflower seeds, along with chopped hard-boiled egg, a drizzle of olive oil and some balsamic vinegar – fast food the way it should be. For optimum nutrition, lentils should be eaten along with whole-grain rice to ensure a complete protein (you can throw them in the same pot together), this is because lentils contain the amino acid, lysine, but are low in methionine. Wholegrain rice, however, is high in methionine yet low in lysine. Eaten together, the one makes up for the other’s lack, providing a perfect protein-rich meal.
pilchards and sardines shopping tip Other oily fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids include mackerel, salmon and tuna (sms the name of the fish to 079 499 8795 to see if it’s a sustainable seafood). why? They are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to promote healthy brain development and growth and concentration in children. Including oily fish in your child’s diet from an early age will ensure they develop a taste for them. serving suggestion Always add a couple of tins to your shopping trolley as they are perfect for quick and easy dinners. Mash with a fork, add a squeeze of lemon juice and serve on whole-wheat toast with cherry tomatoes.
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eggs shopping tip Check the sell-by date as fresh eggs are not only tastier, but also keep their shape and colour better when cooking. why? Eggs are a good source of protein, vitamins A and D, and iron. serving suggestion Perfect for Sunday night dinners – scramble the eggs with some onions, spinach and tomatoes or serve up French toast topped with melted cheese. For perfect hard-boiled eggs, simply pop the egg into a pot of cold water (this way the egg shell won’t crack), put the pot on the stove to boil and once the water is boiling, remove the egg and leave to cool.
yellow vegetables shopping tip Stock up with carrots, butternut, squash, yellow peppers and the yellow-fleshed sweet potatoes. Scrub skins with a veggie brush to get rid of any pesticide residue. why? Yellow vegetables are especially good for you because they are an excellent source of vitamin A, which is essential for healthy eyes and a strong immune system. serving suggestion Cut up carrots and peppers to eat raw with a hummus dip. Thinly slice potatoes, carrots and butternut, drizzle with a little olive oil and roast into chips. Cut open gem squash, remove seeds, add a dab of butter, some grated cheese and a little nutmeg, then cook in the microwave for a few minutes for an instant meal.
milk and dairy foods shopping tip Choose plain yoghurt and stir in chopped fruit when serving – this way you steer clear of added sugar, colourants and artificial flavours. For similar reasons, avoid processed cheeses with added colourants. why? Dairy contains calcium, which is essential for healthy, strong bones and teeth. Children should be encouraged to have milk, yoghurt or cheese every day. serving suggestion Dairy is an easy one to get children to consume – from frozen yoghurt to smoothies, milkshakes and hot chocolate.
fruit (vitamin C) shopping tip Rather give fresh fruit than a pre-prepared fruit juice, as vitamin C content magazine cape town
is compromised by exposure to light and juices will have lost a degree of vitamin C content, particularly if stored in clear bottles. why? Children should be encouraged to eat a wide range of fruit, particularly those rich in vitamin C, such as oranges, naartjies, kiwi fruit, guavas, strawberries, mangoes, papaya and blueberries. Vitamin C is essential for a healthy immune system and gums, and it also aids in the absorption of iron from food, so it is a good thing to eat along with iron-rich food. serving suggestion Fruit has endless possibilities. Try smoothies, fruit kebabs and fruit salads or juice the fruit and drink it or make into ice lollies. Try making sauces to drizzle over French toast – put a spoon of corn flour, a little sugar and fruit such as blueberries into a pot to cook, stirring constantly.
shopping tip Steer clear of bottled water if you can; it’s fast becoming an environmental no-no and there are fears of BPA (Bisphenol A) leaching into the water. Rather fit a filter to your taps if you are concerned about the quality of your water supply. why? Children need to have plenty of fluids to keep themselves hydrated and one of the easiest and healthiest ways to do so is to get them to drink plenty of tap water. serving suggestion If children are offered water as a drink from early on they will get used to the taste and choose water over sweetened juices or other cold drinks. Add some fresh mint, a piece of lemon or a dash of juice to encourage your children to drink up.
shopping tip Why not grow your own? Throw some seeds down, water and harvest regularly and your supply will be ongoing throughout the summer months. Failing this, reach over the more expensive baby spinach packets in your local shop and choose this ruddier variety of greens. why? Swiss chard is high in iron. serving suggestion Use in omelettes and quiches, or boil alone and add a dash of lemon juice before serving. Serve some freshly squeezed orange juice with Swiss chard as the iron in these leafy greens is the vegetarian type of iron, known as the non-heme type. The consumption of vitamin C at the same meal increases the body’s ability to absorb the iron. With thanks to Cape Town-based dietitian Deborah Hoepfl for her input. April 2011
curious+creative questioning skills and lateral thinking in your children. kindling a burning curiosity? Children are programmed to be inquisitive, to seek explanations and to do their best to make sense of this extraordinary world. Sadly, growing up too often dampens this enquiring spirit. This is partly our fault: children see adults answering questions far more often than asking them. They come to assume that asking questions is something you are meant to grow out of; answers are what count.
Fortunately asking “thinking questions” is a skill that can be practiced, and it’s amazing how quickly you’ll see the changes that result. Young children, especially, are still in that wonderfully curious stage and they respond well to being challenged to think of unusual questions. Some tips for getting their questioning juices flowing include: • Switch the focus from praising your child for their right answers to praising
them when they ask really interesting and unusual questions. Don’t be afraid to admit it when you can’t answer their questions. You could say something like: “That’s a really interesting question. I’m going to need some thinking time for that one.” This shows your child you don’t have all the answers and that that’s fine. It also teaches them to take “thinking time” too. • Let your child see you asking openended questions about the world around
you. One good way is to use the phrase “I wonder”: “I wonder why cats have whiskers?” or “I wonder what it feels like to live in a country where everybody speaks a language you don’t understand?”
curiosity games and activities question starters Children find it easier to learn to ask interesting and unusual questions when they are given some “question starters” to
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ILLUSTRATIONS: SHUTTERSTOCK.COM, MARIETTE BARKHUIZEN
Games and ideas from C.J. Simister’s The Bright Stuff for encouraging
get them going. Make a poster together to go on the wall, listing several ways to begin a thinking question: Why do you think that…? What might happen if…? How could we find out if…? Is it possible that…? What do you think of…? Get everybody involved by displaying your family’s questions on sticky notes on a notice board – perhaps use a different colour for each member of the family. Questions can be jotted down whenever someone thinks of one and then used as prompts for discussions at meal times or in the car. finger questions This is a good one for the car: one person picks an object, place or person. The players then take it in turns to ask five questions about this object, using the words: “why”, “when”, “how”, “where” and “who”. Young children may find it harder than you’d expect, but you’ll be surprised how much more interesting these questions become with a little prompting and praise. the fairy question mother This game requires your children to imagine that their fairy question mother is going to pay them a visit. She will grant them the answers to three questions they would like her to answer… what will they choose?
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encouraging originality and creativity Creativity is about ideas; ideas that may be turned into extraordinary paintings, poems and plays, but that equally could result in scientific breakthroughs, ingenious new products, improved procedures, groundbreaking laws, previously undiscovered solutions to problems – progress. The problem is that we tend to be better at judging other people’s ideas than having them ourselves. Here are some ideas for fostering creativity in your child: • Try to encourage an atmosphere where having a lot of ideas, however foolish they may be, is something that’s valued highly – the fun bit before selecting the best of the bunch. The greatest barrier to creativity is the fear of “getting it wrong”. To counter this, teach your children that ideas are like stepping stones; even the most ridiculous ones might lead to something brilliant later on. • Create plenty of opportunities for growing originality. Ask questions that fit with whatever you are doing – though be careful how you do this. If you’re out on a walk and you lob an unexpected “Why do trees have bark?” at your child, they’re going to feel like they’re in an exam. Simply rephrasing this as: “Look at the bark on this tree. Isn’t it amazing?
I wonder how many theories we could come up with about why trees have bark?” transforms the activity into a far more tempting game.
curiosity games and activities 20 ways Who can think of 20 ways to… make a tree happy; remove a bull from a china shop; teach a chimpanzee to play soccer? The sillier the better. crazy connections What connects an elephant and a teapot? Or a picnic and chandelier? This game is a great way of improving lateral thinking skills. Place lots of random words in a bag (you could get children to think these up themselves) and take turns to pull out two. The challenge is to find as many crazy connections as possible.
A variation is to use action phrases such as “washing the car”, “jumping on a trampoline” or “whistling a tune”. This introduces the concept of analogies: how is riding a bike like doing a jigsaw? Everyone should keep thinking beyond the obvious answers – the most inventive ideas usually take time to form. flog it! This game requires lateral thinking to identify the unique selling points of some very unlikely products. Players take turns to set each other seemingly impossible challenges: “Can you sell a… bottle of fresh air? A box of fresh grass cuttings? Yesterday’s toe-nail clippings? (The yuck factor really comes into its own in this game.) The opponent has to come up with as persuasive a sales pitch as possible. When they run out of ideas they switch and set a challenge for the next person.
about the book In The Bright Stuff, child education expert C.J. Simister gives parents practical games, activities and exercises for illuminating and nurturing young minds. These are focused around 16 qualities that Simister believes are vital for your child to “thrive in the real world”, and include “how to stimulate independent thinking” and “how to take the right sort of risk”. This book is available at leading bookshops.
TAMLYN VINCENT gives some guidelines for health checks parents should be having.
e all worry about the health of our children, but often give little thought to our own… It’s important to make sure we keep an eye on our health too. Here is a list of tests that parents should be having to ensure problems are spotted early enough to treat optimally. These are guidelines only and if you experience any worrying symptoms you should seek advice from your doctor.
moms and dads blood pressure Blood pressure can fall into several categories: lower than 120/80 is optimal; 120/80 to 140/90 is pre-hypertensive; and above 140/90 is classified as high blood pressure. High blood pressure (or hypertension) can lead to an increased risk of heart disease or a stroke. Most people don’t experience symptoms of high blood pressure, so it is recommended you have your blood pressure tested every three to five years. Risk factors include a family history of heart problems, diabetes, and lifestyle factors such as drinking excessive amounts of coffee or alcohol, and not exercising. Low blood pressure (or hypotension) is not usually a problem unless it is so low that not enough blood is getting to your organs. Symptoms would include dizziness and feeling faint. getting tested Dr Shezadi Kamroodien, a Johannesburg GP, suggests starting with blood pressure tests in your 20s, particularly if you are in the high-risk category. The tests are inexpensive and can be done at most pharmacies and clinics. If you have high blood pressure you should see a doctor. (The test can also determine if your blood pressure is too low.)
As we age, our bones lose density, causing them to become fragile and fracture. Osteoporosis is a disease found in both men and women, and is characterised by loss of bone mass and increased fragility. The first sign is usually a fracture after minimal trauma, which often happens between 50 and 70 years of age, although it can happen at 30 or younger. It is advisable to go for testing if you are at risk. Kamroodien says “those who are very petite, are vitamin D deficient, and have a family history of osteoporosis” are at risk. Other risk factors include age, menopause before the age of 45, excessive use of alcohol or smoking. getting tested Testing bone mass can be costly. According to Kamroodien, bone-density scans are generally only done if the doctor suspects osteoporosis. Tests can include a dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, where an X-ray is passed through part of the skeleton, or computerised tomography, which measures spinal-bone mass. Other tests include X-rays, single-photon absorptiometry and ultrasound, although these do not always provide sufficient information.
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cholesterol Cholesterol is produced by our bodies and is used for things such as making vitamin D and building cell walls. It is also found in certain foods, such as eggs, dairy products and meats. While the body does use some cholesterol, the excess can gather on artery walls, which may lead to heart problems. High cholesterol is often only diagnosed after the damage has been done, so levels should be checked every five years. If you are found to have high cholesterol, or if there are high-risk factors, then more frequent testing will be recommended. Risk factors include age, a family history of high cholesterol, smoking and high blood pressure. getting tested Kamroodien recommends that everyone older than 20 years have a fasting lipogram done, which tests total cholesterol, and good and bad cholesterol. Alternatively, a cholesterol test can be done by giving a small sample of blood for testing, either in a laboratory or onsite, although these are only suggested as diagnostic tools. A cholesterol reading of below 5 mmol/l (millimoles per litre) is preferable, while a reading above 7 mmol/l would require a visit to the doctor.
glucose and diabetes High glucose and blood-sugar levels can be dangerous, so those at risk should be tested every one to two years. If blood glucose levels are normal, then testing can be done every three years. You should get tested if you are overweight and have other risk factors, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol or you have suffered from gestational diabetes. Kamroodien also highlights the “strong genetic component” of diabetes, saying that those with a family history of diabetes should be tested from their 20s. Those who don’t exercise are also at risk. getting tested There are three tests that can be performed. The fasting plasma glucose test requires you to fast for eight hours, after which your blood will be tested to determine how much glucose is in the plasma. The oral glucose tolerance test can determine how well you handle a normal amount of glucose. You will be given a beverage containing glucose to drink and then your blood will be tested at two-hour intervals. Both tests can detect pre-diabetes and diabetes. In a random plasma glucose test, blood is taken randomly throughout the day – someone without diabetes will have fairly constant glucose levels. This test can detect diabetes.
skin checks In South Africa’s climate, it is essential for everyone to conduct regular skin checks, and to take note of new and changing moles. People at particular risk would include those who are fair-skinned, have a personal or family history of skin cancer, have suffered severe sunburn or have more than 50 moles. Kamroodien says that “a mole that gets bigger, changes colour or becomes painful” should be checked by a doctor. getting tested Skin cancers usually appear as tumours, with the most dangerous being melanomas. These can appear as a new mole, or as changes in an existing mole – doing an ABCD check helps to identify these changes. Check for asymmetry (the halves don’t match), border (the edges are irregular), colour (uneven colour) and diameter (there is a change in size). Other checks you can do include regular self-examinations as well as mole mapping, where moles are photographed regularly in order to pick up any changes. Mole mapping can be done by a doctor or dermatologist, or you can do it yourself.
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Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast divide and grow into tumours. Symptoms of breast cancer include a change in the shape, size or colour of the nipple or breast, discharge from the nipples, puckering of the skin, a lump or swelling, or pain in the breast or armpit. Breast cancer occurs predominantly in post-menopausal women, however, younger women are also susceptible, so they should start checking their breasts regularly once they reach puberty. Tina Naidoo, Durban health programmes coordinator at CANSA, says women should begin self-examining “when they start to menstruate”. This familiarity with your breasts also increases the chance of detecting a lump. getting tested Women should examine their breasts at the same time every month, “two weeks after menstruation when the breasts are not tender”, says Naidoo. Self-examination can be done by looking at both breasts and the armpit area, and by feeling both while standing up and lying down. Naidoo also recommends that women over 50 years schedule regular mammograms with their doctor, where a special X-ray is used to determine if there are any lumps in the breast. If there is a high risk, such as a family history of breast cancer, then women should begin having mammograms at 40 years of age.
Cancer of the cervix is mostly caused by various strains of a virus called the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is a sexually transmitted infection; most of the time the immune system will eradicate the virus itself. However, in some cases, the virus remains and over time has the potential to convert normal cervical cells into cancerous ones. Cervical cancer often only manifests symptoms in its later stages. These symptoms include abnormal vaginal bleeding, pain during intercourse or after a pelvic exam, or bleeding after menopause. Early symptoms, such as unusual or odorous discharge, are rare, so pap smears are done to detect precancerous and abnormal cells in the cervix. getting tested Cervical cancer cells change over time from normal to abnormal and the pap smear helps to detect these gradual changes. CANSA therefore recommends that all sexually active women get tested every two to three years. If there is evidence of abnormal cells, Naidoo suggests getting tested annually. Women should go for their first pap smear if they experience frequent viral infections or symptoms of cervical cancer. Otherwise, 30 years is the recommended age. A pap smear is a straightforward test, where a sample of cells is taken from the cervix. A small instrument is used to scrape cells off the wall of the cervix; these are then placed on a slide and sent for testing.
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dads only testicular cancer screening Men are encouraged to begin testing for cancer of the testicles from as early as the onset of puberty – being familiar with the normal testicle will help to identify unusual lumps or swelling if they develop. Risk factors include being between the ages of 15 and 40, having had an undescended testicle at birth, having a family history of testicular cancer and being HIV-positive. Symptoms include a lump in the testicle, the enlargement of one testicle, or of the breast area or nipples, and a heaviness in the testicles, scrotum or groin. getting tested Dr Ehab Helmy Abdel Goad, clinical head of the Ethekwini Department of Urology encourages mothers to check that their baby’s testes are in the scrotum. He also recommends self-examination from early on to detect “any changes, such as the testes becoming painful or increasing in size”. Selfexamination can be done by looking at the scrotum and feeling each testicle for any unfamiliar lumps or nodules. Men should also ask their doctors to examine their testicles once a year.
prostate cancer check Older men are at risk of developing prostate cancer, and this risk increases with age, or
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if there is a family history of prostate cancer. CANSA therefore recommends that men start with being tested once a year at about age 50 (45 if they are at higher risk). The prostate is a small gland underneath the bladder, and once this becomes enlarged, the urine stream begins to slow. Other symptoms, according to Goad, include burning or pain at the tip of the penis, and a dull ache in the prostate. These symptoms often only become apparent in the later stages of the disease, so screening tests are advisable. getting tested There are two tests men can have to detect prostate cancer. The first is a PSA test in which blood is drawn and the amount of PSA (prostate specific antigen) in the blood determined. A high reading means that there may be prostate cancer. As there are other causes of high PSA, further tests are then likely to be performed. A digital rectal exam (DRE) is used to check for abnormalities in the lower pelvic region. To perform this test, the doctor places a gloved, lubricated finger into the rectum and applies pressure to the prostate to examine it. If either test indicates a risk of cancer, then the doctor is likely to recommend further testing.
a good read
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for toddlers great to read out loud
I want a Mini Tiger By Joyce Dunbar and Lara Jones
(Macmillan Children’s Books, R158) A little girl wants her very own miniature wild animal. Anything from a little snappy happy crocodile and a tiny trundle rumble elephant, to a pocket-sized grizzly bear. But as her big brother explains, a real wild animal would make a terrible pet. You can’t nuzzle a crocodile or tickle a wild elephant, and a grizzly bear belongs in a cave not a pocket. But there’s one pet that loves to be tickled and cuddled. It looks a bit like a tiger, only much smaller... Children aged three plus will love this delightful, rhythmic tale, bursting with imagination. It’s also a playful introduction to a world of wild animals.
Fairy Magic! and Wizard Magic! By Rachel Fuller (Macmillan Children’s Books, R85 each) These little books come with sliding tabs to create magic changing pictures on each page. Apart from providing fun and entertainment, they will stimulate your little one’s imagination and introduce them to rhythm and rhyme. Children as young as two will love these bright books with their hidden surprises. The illustrator, Rachel Fuller, worked for many years as a children’s illustrator, before taking time off to bring up her twin boys. She is known for her colourful, bold mixed-media artwork. This is the perfect beginner book for aspiring fairy and wizard toddlers.
I’m not scary! and I won’t bite! By Rod Campbell (Campbell Books, R76 each) These touch-and-feel books have a surprise for little enquiring minds on every page. Your child can feel a scratchy-scratchy grasshopper, a shiny beetle, a fluffy rabbit, a slippery fish and a leathery hippo plus lift a flap to find a slimy snail. Both books have big-impact endings. Rod Campbell has been illustrating and making children’s books since 1986 and he is also the creator of the Dear Zoo series.
for preschoolers Over the Rainbow By Eric Puybaret, E.Y. Harburg, Harold Arlen and Judy Collins
(Macmillan Children’s Books, R147) Few songs have created as many memories and magic for children of all ages than Arlen and Harburg’s “Over the Rainbow”. Now this classic has been transformed for a new generation. Acclaimed painter Eric Puybaret has conjured up this marvellous fantasy, which will transport you and your child from a little red farmhouse, to castles in the clouds or wherever your imagination wants to go. While you look and dream, listen to the CD (included) recorded by the Grammy award-winner Judy Collins. The other two songs on the CD are “White Coral Bells” and “I see the Moon”.
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for early graders
Tractor Factory By Elinor Bagenal and Steve Augarde
Chameleons are Cool By Martin Jenkins and Sue Shields
(Mathew Price Ltd., R106) Children aged four to eight can have fun with this pop-up book that follows the assembly line of a tractor factory. With tabs to pull and lots of moving parts, the book allows young readers to help build the perfect tractor. The engine needs to be lowered onto the chassis, the front-end loader needs to be fitted, and everything must be checked to see if it’s in working order. This book will fascinate all young mechanics. Note: some of the small parts can be a choking hazard for little children.
(Walker Books, R90) Chameleons are Cool is part of the Read and Discover series, which aims to encourage children to learn about the world as they learn to read. Children as young as five will enjoy finding out about these lizards, thanks to the colourful and fun illustrations by Shields. What child wouldn’t be interested in these grumpy, pocket-sized, swivel-eyed, colour-changing and long-tongued sharpshooters? Martin Jenkins has managed to give informative titbits about these creatures in a way that even pre-schoolers can understand. Other books in the series include Think of Beaver, I like Monkeys because… and River Story.
Room on the Broom – Colouring Book By Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler (Macmillan Children’s Books, R85) The award-winning duo, Donaldson and Scheffler, have released this fun activity book based on the original Room on the Broom story, which was translated into 21 languages. But this is more than just a colouring-in book – children can paint, draw, join the dots, complete words and copy pictures too. Scheffler’s illustrations are again a winner and your child will love the good-natured witch – warts and all – and all the quirky animals.
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Judy Moody’s Way Wacky Uber Awesome Book of More Fun Stuff to Do By Megan McDonald and Peter H. Reynolds (Walker Books, R130) Girls aged six to nine just love Judy Moody and in this book they can join Judy in wacky activities. They can take the Judy Moody personality quiz to find out if they’re more like Judy or her little brother, Stink, or find out what Judy Moody’s name is in other languages. There are tips on how to walk through paper and invent your own board game. Other fun activities include how to make pop art, testing your Judy Moody knowledge, turning your name into a poem plus word searches and riddles.
for early graders Mighty Mount Kilimanjaro By Geronimo Stilton (Scholastic, R70) Geronimo Stilton runs a newspaper, but his true passion is writing adventure stories. In New Mouse City, the capital of Mouse Island, his books are all bestsellers. This time, Geronimo’s super-sporty friend, Bruce Hyena, has convinced him to go on another extreme adventure. They are going to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. The Geronimo Stilton series is based on the popular television programme, and children aged eight to 12 will enjoy going on adventures with all the Stiltons – Geronimo’s sister, Thea, his awful joker cousin, Trap, and his favourite nephew, Benjamin.
for preteens and teens Ottoline at Sea By Chris Riddell
Fact Finder By Helen Lewis (Metz Press, R165) This book is a treasure trove of knowledge for children aged eight to 12. It’s a funfilled collection of facts and a reference book integrating all areas of the national curriculum: Arts and Culture, Economic Management Sciences, Language, Life Orientation, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Social Sciences and Technology. In addition to the basic information taught at school, each section contains loads of interesting asides, references to websites and other sources of information. There are also suggestions for fun things to do and places to visit. With over 600 photographs and illustrations, Fact Finder is a great companion for your child when doing projects, studying or for satisfying their hunger for information.
(Macmillan Children’s Books, R102) This is the third Ottoline story from award-winning and bestselling author Chris Riddell. Ottoline and Mr Munroe do everything and go everywhere together. That is, until the day Mr Munroe mysteriously disappears leaving a strange clue written in string… Armed with her Amateur Roving Collectors’ travel pass, Ottoline sets off on a journey over, under and on top of the sea to find her hairy best friend, and bring him back home. The book comes with bog goggles to help your child see Ottoline’s world more clearly. The Ottoline series is very popular among young children, and includes Ottoline goes to School and Ottoline and the Yellow Cat.
Running Wild By Michael Morpurgo (HarperCollins Children’s Books, R130) When 10-year-old Will’s father dies in Iraq, his mother surprises him with a trip to Indonesia. But little could she have known what would await them both there. Will realises that something is wrong when Oona, the elephant he is riding along the beach, begins to spook. Then, suddenly, she takes off into the jungle with Will on her back. And that’s when tsunami hits. With his mother almost certainly drowned, and nothing to cling to but an elephant, Will faces a terrifying future. This is another epic and heart-rending adventure by Morpurgo.
an ep ic tale
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for us Seed to Table By Erin Koepke, Abby Elsener and Toni Marraccini (voluntary publisher Doreen Gowan, R100) Abalimi Bezekhaya is a social profit organisation run by volunteers working to empower the disadvantaged through urban agriculture. Each year 3 000 receive support from Abalimi, and many now produce enough food to participate in Harvest of Hope. This organisation sells and delivers fresh produce throughout Cape Town. Abalimi Bezekhaya inspires the seasonal recipes in this book and all proceeds will go to the organic micro-farmers in Cape Town. There is a compilation of vegetable-based dishes. For more info on where to find the book and on the organisation, visit abalimi.org.za
The Tea Lords By Hella S. Haasse (Portobello Books, R215) Based on documents and correspondence archived in the Netherlands, Haasse created this compelling piece of innovative historical fiction. The story stretches over several decades in the life of the conscientious eldest son Rudolf Kerkhoven and his struggle to develop a tea plantation in the Dutch colony Java, now Indonesia. He moves from plantation to plantation, attempting to understand the ways of the local people, their version of Islam and their relationship to their land. The Tea Lords transports the reader to the East Indies, into colonial culture and into the lives of complex characters, craftily constructed by Haasse. The Tea Lords is an acclaimed Dutch masterpiece at last translated into English.
A Watermelon, a Fish and a Bible By Christy Lefteri (Quercus, R153) It is July 1974 and the Turkish army has invaded the town of Kyrenia in Cyprus. The story focuses on a young woman, Koki, who has been shunned by the villagers because they never believed she was her father’s daughter (and her mother died too soon to quiet their wagging tongues). And when she becomes pregnant and there’s no sign of a husband, her fate is sealed. The other lead character is Adem Berker who finds himself back in Kyrenia, his former home, now as a member of the invading force. This book is powerfully written – Lefteri has received rave reviews for this her debut novel.
parenting book The Adolescent Storm By Meg Fargher and Helen Dooley (Penguin Group SA, R195) Both highly qualified professionals, Dooley and Fargher have a wealth of experience in understanding adolescents and are actively involved in consulting to parents on conflict management and parenting issues. In The Adolescent Storm, they give you clearer insight into healthy, ageappropriate adolescent development. The book will also help you understand and enjoy the process of guiding your adolescent through these stormy years. It gives advice on how to enjoy a deeply connected and relevant relationship with your child from adolescence into adulthood. Thoughtful, not perfect, parents can create thoughtful adolescents and in turn thoughtful, responsible adults who are well integrated in society. magazine cape town
what’s on in april
You can also access the calendar online at
Things to do, places to go, ways to give back, talks and exhibitions plus loads of fun for the whole family. compiled by LUCILLE KEMP
FUN for children
only for parents
bump, baby & tot in tow
how to help
FUN FOR CHILDREN
ONLY FOR PARENTS
bump, baby & tot in tow
how to help
Enriching movies for children Expose your child to movies from all over the world. Think Charlie Chaplin’s The Kid.
What’s In a Name Hear your favourite, hilarious, musical theatre numbers in this comedy revue cabaret at Kalk Bay Theatre.
Moms Club Where moms and babies can meet and make friends. At least once a month there is a speaker on a baby-related topic.
Help the Rural Child Trust Improve the lives of vulnerable rural children through proceeds raised from its six charity shops.
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Pick n Pay Taste of Cape Town A taste of the good life with premium offerings from 14 top restaurants.
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calendar and Sunday. Fun activities include jumping castles, an obstacle course, face painting and balloon artists plus characters and carousels to entertain children while Mom and Dad enjoy all that the festival has to offer. Ends 10 April. Time: Thursday and Friday 6:30pm–10:30pm, Saturday 1pm–5pm and 6:30pm–10:30pm, Sunday 12pm–5pm. Venue: Green Point Cricket Club. Cost: from R70. For more info and bookings: visit tasteofcapetown.com or computicket.co.za
SPECIAL EVENTS 1 friday McLaren Circus is in town From poodles to pythons, acrobats and clowns, the McLaren Circus is a great family outing. Also enjoy pony rides and balloon and light shows during intermission. Also 2 and 3 April, 5–10 April. Time: 3pm and 7:30pm. Venue: West Coast Village Shopping Centre, Sandowne Rd, Blouberg. Cost: R50–R90. Contact: 082 747 5726 or visit mclarencircus.co.za. Also performing in Durbanville 21 April–2 May.
2 saturday Headstart Swim School open day Take your children to test out their heated, indoor pool facilities, chat to the teachers and have some fun. They teach babies, beginners and stroke correction. Time: 10am–3pm. Venue: 128 Belvedere Rd, (entrance on Queen Victoria Rd). Cost: free but booking is essential. Contact Rochelle: 021 674 7681, email@example.com or visit headstartswim.co.za
3 sunday The Absa Cape Epic Grand Finale There are several activities for children and the family on the final day of the race. For the younger crowd there is the Kiddies Adventure Zone, with a bike race during the day, jumping castles, a
3 April – The Absa Cape Epic Grand Finale
variety of games, face painting and slides. Grand Finale Celebrations kick off with live entertainment by well-known South African bands, a farmers’ market, and delectable food and wine. Vantage points are accessible to the general public, so that everyone can have a piece of the mountain biking experience. Venue: Lourensford Wine Estate. For more info: visit cape-epic.com
Last Night of the Proms Canadian violinist Jonathan Chan performs, among others, under the baton of Richard Cock. Also 10 April. Time: Saturday 8pm and Sunday 7pm. Venue: City Hall, Darling St. Cost: R170 and R210. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit computicket.co.za
11 monday Ice Hockey World Championships The six competing teams include South Africa, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Luxembourg, Israel, Turkey and Mongolia. The winner moves up to division two and, if successful there, has a chance to join the World Championship Division, which features teams such as the USA, Canada and Russia. Go and cheer your fellow South Africans on at this action-packed tournament. Ends 17 April. 13 and 16 April are rest days. Time: 1pm, 4:15pm and 7:45pm. Venue: The Ice Station, GrandWest Casino and Entertainment World, Goodwood. Cost: adults R30, children under 16 R20 per match. For more info: 021 535 2260
16 saturday Milnerton Community Festival Food, and art and crafts stalls. Time: 10am–5pm.
7 thursday Pick n Pay Taste of Cape Town Features include premium dishes from 14 top restaurants, the Pick n Pay Wine Theatre, the Johnnie Walker Whisky Theatre and the Grolsch Beer Academy, the exclusive Taste Club House plus a Kidz Zone hosted by Partytots and Active Tots on Saturday
17 April – The Table of Peace and Unity
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Venue: Milnerton Primary School, Zastron Rd, Milnerton. Cost: R10 entry. Contact Gale: 021 555 2796, 082 920 5166 or firstname.lastname@example.org Easter Kids market day Support entrepreneurial and industrious children and buy a souvenir. Anything under R10 on offer; from rock paintings to lemonade stands. Time: 10am–12pm. Venue: Kiids Boutique, 51 Waterloo St, Wynberg. Cost: free entry. Contact: email@example.com or visit kidsdecor.co.za
17 sunday The Table of Peace and Unity Lunch on Table Mountain not only means a sensational gourmet and entertainment experience, but also a lifesaving charitable occasion. All proceeds go to designated children’s charities. Play your part in this year’s giving back. For more info: visit gourmetsa.com
the old and the not so fit), 5km (for the fitter and more adventurous runner/walker). This is also the perfect warm-up for those running the half or the ultra marathon. Time: 12pm, 12:30pm, 1:30pm, 2:30pm. Venue: UCT rugby fields, upper campus, Rondebosch. Cost: R20–R25. For more info: visit twooceansmarathon.org.za/race/fun-runs
25 monday Fynbos and food event on Family Day A 20% sale on all plants in the nursery, locally produced food stalls, handicraft stalls and a host of children’s entertainment. Also try out edible fynbos food and bakes at the tea garden, plant talks, fynbos walks, music, a playground, pony rides and more. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: Good Hope Nursery, Plateau Rd (M65), 5km from Scarborough, en route to Cape Point. Contact: 021 780 9299, 072 234 4804, fynbosplants@xsinet. co.za or visit capepoint.com
20 wednesday Camps Bay Primary School open day Time: 8:30am–10:30am. Venue: Dunkeld Rd, Camps Bay. Cost: free. Contact Debbie: 021 438 1503
22 friday Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon fun run Participants can choose between the 56m Nappy Dash (3 years and younger, must be able to walk), 300m Toddlers’ Trot (4–6 years), 2,5km (for the young,
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25 April – Fynbos and food event on Family Day
Dirtopia MTB Festival
It’s closer to Cape Town this year, offering mountain bike enthusiasts, leisure cyclists and spectators of all ages a jam-packed weekend of fun and action. Activities include a free ride challenge, fun rides, skills clinics, a downhill cycle, dirt jumping, a spectacular night ride, dual racing and a trail run. Children’s entertainment also available. Ends 2 May. Time: varies. Venue: Simonsberg Conservancy area, based at Delvera Farm near Stellenbosch. Cost: R30–R120. For more info and pre-entries: 021 884 4752, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit dirtopia.co.za
SA Cheese Festival A shared passion for cheese brings together food lovers, artisan producers and other food champions on a single extraordinary occasion. Features include Dairy Square, Carnival Park, Waterfront and Meander. Ends 2 May. Children are entertained in the Kiddies’ Corner by professional entertainers. Time: 10am–6pm daily. Ends at 5pm on the last day. Venue: Sandringham, halfway between Cape Town and Paarl on the N1, close to Stellenbosch. Cost: Saturday and Sunday R110, Friday and Monday R90. Senior citizens pay R70 and children 12 years and younger enter free. For more info: 021 975 4440, cheese@agriexpo. co.za or visit cheesefestival.co.za
Delta Draf 2011 wine farm run Set against the backdrop of Simonsberg and Jonkershoek mountains the 10km road race and 5km fun run follow a route that keeps entirely to farm roads, winding through the vineyards and along river banks. It rates as one of the most scenic routes on the running calendar. There are spot prizes as well as live traditional Cape rural music with the Delta bands and food stalls. Time: 6am. Venue: Solms-Delta Wine Estate. Cost: 10km licensed athlete R30, unlicensed athlete R55, 5km fun run R15. Contact: to pre-order a Fyndraai picnic: 021 874 3937 or restaurant@solms-delta. co.za or call 021 874 3937. To enter online: visit enteronline.co.za
Kids Fun extramural classes
FUN FOR CHILDREN art, culture and science Amelia’s Artworks An inspiring space for your children to explore and play through art and crafts, without fear or judgment. These creative workshops are for children 5–10 years old. Time: every Friday 2pm–3:30pm. Venue: 7 Capel Rd, Highlands Estate, Oranjezicht. Cost: R150 per class, R540 per month or R900 per term. Contact: 082 864 6769 or email@example.com Collect-a-Can Artistic Expression Competition Draw, paint, sculpt or even write a story or poem to the theme: “I can make a difference to the future by recycling cans today”. Submit your artwork together with an entry form (available online) to Collect-a-Can by 31 May 2011. The age categories are: Grade 0–7 and Grade 8–12 learners. Cost: entry is free. For more info: 011 466 2939, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit collectacan.co.za Free two-hour introductory fabric painting workshop for adults and children. 16 April. Time: 8:45am–10:45am. Venue: Pinelands. Cost: R30 per kit. Contact Wendy: 021 531 8076, 082 391 4954 or email@example.com. They also offer weekday classes at Frank Joubert Art Centre. Kids Fun extramural classes Programme includes art and crafts, drama, games, life skills, outings and parties. For children
6–16 years. Time: every Friday 3pm–5pm. Venue: OIS Centre, Old Strandfontein Rd, Ottery. Cost: R25 per child per week (discount for two or more children and monthly bookings). Contact: 021 704 1462, 074 106 0713 or firstname.lastname@example.org Pottery classes Lissa teaches techniques such as wheelwork, handwork, sculpting and glazing. Exciting projects are suggested. Time: Monday–Thursday 3:30pm–5pm. Venue: 26 Skaife St, Scott Estate, Hout Bay. Cost: R75. Contact: 021 790 7643, 082 781 8139 or email@example.com Sue Nepgen’s children’s art tuition Children from any school attend classes once a week, where the emphasis is on fostering creativity, self-esteem and enjoyment of art. For children 4–13 years. Term starts 8 April for Michael Oak pupils, 15 April for children from other schools. Time: weekdays after 12pm and Saturday mornings. Venue: Michael Oak Waldorf School, Kenilworth or 28 Klaasenbosch Dr, Constantia. Cost: R520 per term, including materials, firing and outings, with pro rata fees for children joining after 29 April. Contact Sue: 021 794 6609, 083 237 7242 or firstname.lastname@example.org
classes, talks and workshops Learn to speak Italian by participating in fun activities and creative workshops. 2, 9, 16 April. Time: 11am–12pm. Venue: The Italian School of Cape Town, first floor, The Grimley, 14 Tuin Plein St, Gardens. Cost: R60 per child per day or R200 per child per
Sue Nepgen’s children’s art tuition
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Grand Easter egg hunt Make Easter egg baskets and practice your egg hunting skills. They’ve sent a message to the Easter bunny and he has promised to leave some Easter eggs for you to find. 23 April. Time: 10:30am–12:30pm. Venue: The Bandstand, Noordhoek Farm Village. Cost: free. Contact: 021 789 2812 or visit noordhoekvillage.co.za
month. Contact: 021 461 8261 or info@ scuolaitalianadelcapo.co.za Modern Mom meet-up group Table View Meet friendly, fun, active local moms of children 0–12 years. The meetings include play dates, outings, family fun days and, most importantly, support from other moms just like you. Time: every Wednesday 11am–12pm. Venue: varies. Cost: free. For more info: 073 216 2717
family outings Cape Farmhouse 2 April: rock band Bed on Bricks. 16 April: hip-hop artist EJ Von Lyrik. Time: 3:30pm. Venue: Cape Farmhouse Restaurant, junction off the M66 and M65 at the bottom of Redhill Rd, 3km past Scarborough. Cost: adults R50, students R40 and children under 12 free. Contact: 021 780 1246, email@example.com or visit capefarmhouse.co.za/rocks Cirque du Soleil With a cast of 50 highcalibre artists hailing from 20 different countries, the highly acclaimed international entertainment group performs for the first time in South Africa. 23 March–3 April. Time: 1pm, 4pm, 5pm, 8pm on different days. Venue: Grand Arena, Grand West Casino. Cost: R272–R476. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 Fun day There are flea-market stalls, pony rides, jumping castles, a tea garden and lots of yummy eats. 16 April. Time: 9am–3pm. Venue: Blouberg Ridge Primary School, Wessel Rd, West Beach. Cost: free entry. Contact Barbara: 082 256 7970 SAS Assegaai submarine tour The SAS Assegaai, formerly the SAS Johanna van der Merwe, was one of three Daphneclass submarines acquired from France between 1970 to 1972, which became the first submarines to serve in the South African Navy. Experienced guides explain life aboard as well as how the boat was run and how the systems work. One also gets to experience the feeling of being in a boat underwater. Time: 10am–3pm. Venue: trips to the boat depart from the main jetty in Simon’s Town Harbour. Cost: adults magazine cape town
R40, children under 12 R20. Book through the Simon’s Town Boat Company: 021 786 2136 Scratch Patch Mineral World There is a wide variety of tumble-polished gemstones, mostly popular Southern African stones such as tiger’s eye, rose quartz, amethyst, jasper, agates and crystals. If you’re lucky, you might find virtually anything including lapis lazuli, blue lace agate and other really exotic stones. Time: Monday–Friday 8:30am–4:45pm, Saturday, Sunday and public holidays 9am–5:30pm. Venue: Dido Valley Rd, Simon’s Town. Cost: R14–R80 per bag. Contact: 021 786 2020
finding nature and outdoor play Butterfly World Free-flying exotic butterflies feel right at home. Time: Monday–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Route 44, near Klapmuts. Cost: adults R43, children over 3 years R25, families (two adults, two children) R111. Contact: 021 875 5628 or visit butterflyworld.co.za Giraffe House Spy on the vervet monkey, giraffe, zebra, Nile crocodile, ostrich and Egyptian geese. Time: Monday–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: The Giraffe House Wildlife Awareness Centre, cnr R304 and R101. Cost: adults R45, children 2–15 years R25. For more info: visit giraffehouse.co.za Intaka Island Nature Reserve A 16-hectare wetland and bird sanctuary in the middle of Century City. Take a
Headstart holiday swimming clinic April 2011
Nice Touch school holiday programme
leisurely ferry ride on the Grand Canal. Time: Monday–Sunday 7:30am–5pm. Ferry-ride time: 10am–4pm. Venue: cnr Summer Greens Rd and Century Blvd, Century City. Cost: adults R8, children 3–12 years R4, family ticket (two adults, three children) R20. Ferry-ride cost: adults R20, children 3–12 years R10. Contact: 021 552 6889 World of Birds This is the largest bird park in Africa with over 3 000 birds from 400 different species. Take a walk through the aviaries as well as the Monkey Jungle where you can make friends with the inquisitive squirrel monkeys. Time: 9am–5pm.
Venue: Valley Rd, Hout Bay. Cost: adults R65, children R39, children under 3 free. Contact: 021 790 2730, info@worldofbirds. org.za or visit worldofbirds.org.za
holiday activities African Women’s Network holiday programme includes art and crafts, drama, games and life skills. Final day: party and presentation of attendance certificates. For children 6–16 years. 4–7 April. Time: 10am–1pm. Venue: cnr Old Strandfontein Rd and Shaftsbury Circle, Ottery. Cost: R25 per day. Contact: 021 704 1462, 074 106 0713 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Tots n Pots holiday programme 4, 6, 8 April. Time: 10am. Venue: Daisies Coffee Shop, Doorndrift Rd, Constantia. Cost: R255 for three classes or R90 per class, if space available. Contact Chene: 083 649 7405, email@example.com or visit totsnpots.com Headstart holiday swimming clinic Swimming booster clinics for babies and children 12 months to 8 years. Two-, threeand five-day booster clinics available. 4–8 April. Time: book a session between 8am and 5pm. Venue: indoor heated pool, Children’s Workshop Montessori School, 104 Queen Victoria Rd, Claremont. Cost: R65 per lesson. Contact Rochelle: 021 674 7681 or firstname.lastname@example.org Iziko holiday fun At the museum’s Discovery Room, children see the world through the lens of a microscope, discover treasures in a sandpit, have a bird’s eye view of a colony of ants and feel a whale’s tooth. All activities are aimed at foundation phase learners, and are offered in English or Afrikaans. Activities relating to the displays in the museum are enhanced by interaction with specimens in the Discovery Room. Workshop days: 5 and 7 April 10am–12pm. Biodiversity lesson and butterfly art and crafts activity for children 6–12 years old. Venue: Iziko Museum, Queen Victoria St, Gardens. Contact Anton: 021 481 3924 Kids Easter Karnival at Somerset Mall Enjoy Easter egg hunts, face painting, children’s rides, ball ponds and jumping
castles. Parents can relax at the coffee corner with a complimentary coffee. 23 April–2 May. Time: 10am–4pm daily. Venue: Somerset Mall, Somerset West. Cost: R20. Contact: 021 852 7114 or visit somersetmall.co.za Kidz Discovery holiday club Fun-filled, semi-structured mornings including funky art and crafts, baking, face painting, dressup, role play, clambering on climbing walls and a jungle gym, crazy dancing and story time. For children 3–7 years. 1, 4, 5, 6 April. Time: 9:30am–12:30pm. Venue: The Drive, Camps Bay. Cost: R110, includes a snack and materials. Contact Kathy: 083 654 2494, email@example.com or visit kidzdiscovery.co.za Kidz Playzone holiday programme offers crafts on a daily basis. For children 1–12 years. Special shows include: 7 April Snake Show 10:30am and 29 April Magic Show 10:30am. 1–8 April, 26 April–2 May. Time: Tuesday–Saturday 9am–4:30pm, Sunday and public holidays 9:30am–2pm. Open on Mondays during school holidays. Venue: Durbanville Business Park, Durbanville. Cost: from R20 per hour. Contact: 021 979 4872, bev@kidzplayzone. co.za or visit kidzplayzone.co.za Kindermusik holiday programme They offer you a holiday full of music, stories and activities. A child development educator is the guide through each research-proven activity. There is also a family programme, which is R55 per child for an hour session.
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Roly Polyz school holiday art and crafts programme Run by experienced crafter Sandy Griffiths. 4, 6, 8 April. Monday: place mats with tree designs, made by stamping with leaves and sticks. Wednesday: hanging funky fish made from paper bags, streamers and all things glittery. Friday: fabric painting hungry caterpillar T-shirts. Time: 10:30am–12:30pm. The park is open from 10am–5pm. Venue: 8 Bree St. Cost: R150 per child (siblings R125), including free play at Roly Polyz, snacks, and the art and crafts workshop. Contact Heidi: 021 418 1818 or heidi@ rolypolyz.co.za
4–8 April. Time: varies. Venues: Bergvliet, Claremont, Gardens and Sea Point. Cost: 2–14 months R56 per session, 14 months–7 years R63 per session. For more info: visit kindermusikwithnats.co.za Kronendal School Holiday Club Plan to bake, paint, build, swim and walk. 5–8 April and 25–29 April. Time: tbc. Venue: Kronendal Primary School, Hout Bay. Cost: call to enquire. Contact Joanne: 076 402 2333 or firstname.lastname@example.org Lucky Egg Spot Easter competition Build-A-Bear Workshop celebrates Easter
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with a fun in-store game, the Lucky Egg Spot. It is played at random times during Easter week and, if you’re in-store, you stand a chance to win prizes. 18–24 April. Time: within store trading hours. Venues: V&A Waterfront, Canal Walk and Somerset Mall. Cost: free entry. Contact: bearemy@ buildabear.co.za or visit buildabear.co.za Me-time holiday programme takes place 4–8 April for tots 18 months–4 years 9am–12pm. Cost: one session R130, three sessions R360 and five sessions R550. Children 5–10 years. Time: 8am–1pm.
Cost: one session R150, three sessions R390 and five sessions R600. Teens 10–12 years. Time: 9am–12pm. Cost: one session R150, three sessions R390 and five sessions R600. For more info: 021 418 1573, 082 491 0389 or visit me-time.co N1 City Mall craft activities Children enjoy decorating a bunny pot plant holder, making a bookmarks or decorating a notebook and more. There is limited space so bring your children early. Parental supervision is required. 2–10, 23 and 25 April. Time: 12pm–2pm. Venue: food court. Cost: free. Contact: 021 595 1170 Nice Touch school holiday programme The programme covers sushi, pizza, cupcakes, chocolate chip cookies and Rice Crispies surprise. 4–8 April. Time: Monday– Wednesday 10am–11:30am, Thursday 2pm–3:30pm, Friday 12:45pm–3:15pm. Venue: St James Church Hall in Sea Point. Cost: R85 per session. Contact Janis: 021 434 1721 or visit nicetouch.co.za Ratanga Junction is open 1–10 April and 22 April–2 May. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: Century City. Cost: children over 1,3m R142; under 1,3m R70 and non-riders R45. For more info: visit ratanga.co.za Seaside Village children’s programme Pizza making, a petting zoo, painting workshops, a flower arrangement competition, story time and more. 2–9 April. Time: 2 April 9:30am–12pm, 3 April 11am–1pm, 4–9 April 10am. Venue: Seaside Village Shopping Centre, Big Bay,
Bloubergstrand. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit seasidevillageshoppingcentre.co.za Sporting Chance Easter holiday clinic 4–8 April. Time: 9am. Venue: Constantia Sports Complex and Kelvin Grove, Newlands; Kenridge Primary School, Durbanville; Beaumont Primary, Somerset West; Astro Hockey, Belville. Cost: R340–R500 per week, R120–R160 per day. Contact: 021 683 7299, email@example.com or visit sportingchance.co.za Two Oceans Aquarium Egg hunts, snake shows and art and crafts. 2–10 April and 22 April–2 May. Time: Monday–Sunday 9:30am–6pm. Venue: Dock Rd, V&A Waterfront. Cost: adults R96, children under 4 years free, 4–13 years R46 and 14–17 years R74. Contact: 021 418 3823 or visit aquarium.co.za
Kloof Street Market
Warwick in Wonderland includes an Easter egg hunt, face painting and wine tasting. 22–27 April. Time: 22 April 9am–8pm, 23 April 9am–6pm, 24–27 April 9am–5pm. Venue: Warwick Wine Estate, on the R44 between Stellenbosch and Klapmuts. Cost: face painting R10 per child, children’s picnic R60, gourmet picnic for two adults R299. For more info: visit warwickwine.com Waterfront Craft Market holiday activities 1–10 and 22–25 April. Fun, colourful craft activities for children 4–9 years. Time: 9am–6pm daily. Venue: Waterfront Craft Market. Cost: from R50. Contact: 021 408 7840
markets Country Craft Market 23 and 30 April. Time: 8am–1pm. Venue: 186 Main Rd, Somerset West. Contact Gill: 021 852 6608 or Lesley: 021 843 3287 Elkanah House School Yard Market 2 April. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Elkanah House, 85 Sunningdale Dr, Sunningdale. Cost: free entry. Contact Michelle: 021 554 8586 Kloof Street Market A child-friendly market with crafts, food and interesting stalls to browse. Time: 9:30am–1pm, every Saturday. Venue: Jan van Riebeeck Primary, 52 Kloof St. Contact Mathilda: firstname.lastname@example.org Nitida farmers market Come for breakfast, then shop around for free range eggs and chicken, freshly baked bread, homemade preserves, olives, oils and cupcakes. 30 April. Time: 8am–12:30pm. Venue: Nitida Cellars, M13, Tygervalley Rd, Durbanville. Contact Getha: 083 651 0699, email@example.com or visit nitida.co.za
Porter Estate produce market Over 70 stalls of fresh produce and artisan gifts, loads of children’s activities. Time: 9am–1pm, every Saturday. Venue: Chrysalis Academy, Porter Estate, top of Tokai Rd. Cost: R5 per car for parking. Contact Gail: 082 334 5434 or visit outdoormarket.co.za Rondebosch Craft in the Park Shop for handmade crafts and enjoy meals at the numerous food stalls. 2 April. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: Rondebosch Park, cnr Campground and Sandown Rds, Rondebosch. Cost: free entry. Contact: 021 531 4236 or 083 272 5842 Rustenburg Girls’ Junior School morning market Family fun with traditional games and stalls such as tombola, a tea garden, books, a farm stall and more. 16 April. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Rustenburg Junior School, Main Rd, Rondebosch. Cost: free entry. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
on stage and screen Cape Town Show Telling the story of Cape Town and its history through music, song and dance, this show has given South African raw talent the chance to excel. Time: every Wednesday and Friday, dinner 7pm and show 8pm. Venue: Rainbow Room, Mandela Rhodes Place, Cape Town. Cost: dinner and show: adults R295, children under 12 years R145. Show only: adults R120, children under 12 years R75. Contact: 0861 632 121, 071 820 4016, 073 984 6124, email@example.com or visit capetownshow.co.za Enriching movies for children Do you feel that your child has been robbed of his imagination by seeing over-stimulating movies from only one culture? Expose your
Red Riding Hood This delightful fairy tale follows the well-loved story of the naughty little girl who disobeys her mother and, instead of taking the safe road to visit her granny, goes into the woods where she encounters a big bad wolf… The show is 40 minutes and is suitable for the whole family. 2–9 April. Time: Monday–Saturday 10:30am. Venue: Main Theatre, Baxter Theatre. Cost: R38. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit computicket.co.za
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child to enriching films from countries around the world. When screening foreign language films to children, the subtitles are read out loud by a Cinemuse representative. Time: every Saturday 9:30am. Venue: Oude Libertas Cinema, Stellenbosch. Cost: adults R20, children R10. For more info: visit cinemuse.co.za Pinky Dinky Doo premieres 18 April This series demonstrates to children that stories come from ideas in people’s heads, and that by using their imagination they can create stories. Time: 7:05am and 7:20am on CBeebies (channel 306, DStv). The series continues every weekday: 7:05am and 7:20am and weekends: 3:05pm and 3:20pm The Tale of Peter Rabbit Beatrix Potter’s delightful story for children is on stage. Peter Rabbit one day decides to explore, and instead of going to school, he enters Mr McGregor’s garden... 2 April and 4–9 April. Time: 10:30am and 2:30pm. Venue: The Foyer, Artscape Theatre, DF Malan St. Cost: R50. Contact: 021 423 2675 or book through Dial-a-Seat: 021 421 7695
The Whale Show at Kalk Bay Theatre
The Whale Show Jungle Theatre Company’s The Whale Show is the story of two characters, the Wondering Whale Watchers, who are on a quest to become like whales. They swirl the audience into a fantastic high-energy comedy adventure by juggling and catching food to bubbling underwater music, and receiving e-whales from a giant puppet called Wanda. They discover that the ocean is under threat and get everybody involved in taking care of the sea and saving our whales. Show duration is 45 minutes. 2, 3 and 7–9 April. Time: 11am. Venue: Kalk Bay Theatre. Cost: tbc. Contact: 073 220 5430 or visit kbt.co.za
playtime and story time Bizzy Bodies Time: Monday–Saturday 10am–5pm. Venue: Bizzy Bodies, 23 Bell Crescent, Westlake Business Park, Tokai. Cost: R40 for one hour. Contact: 021 702 0505, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit bizzybodies.co.za Bloubergstrand Library story time Certain Mondays and Wednesdays for 10–15 minutes. Call to enquire. Ideal for 8–9 year olds but the library does accommodate older children. Time: from 3pm. Venue: Andrew Foster Rd, Bloubergstrand. Cost: free. Contact: 021 554 1641 Brackenfell Library story time Every Wednesday, excluding school holidays. Activities included. For children 3 years and older but can accept younger children. Time: 10:30am–11:30am. Venue: Paradys St. Cost: free. Contact: 021 980 1261 Bugz Family Playpark Time: Monday– Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Bugz Playpark, Kraaifontein. Cost: R20, babies that can’t yet walk and pensioners enter free. Contact: 021 988 8836 or email@example.com Drumkidz Each child gets a chance to drum along to a story, song and game. For children 3–9 years. 2 April. Time: 9:30am, 10:30am, 11:30am and 12:30pm. Venue: Elkanah School Yard Market, Elkanah High School, Sunningdale Dr, Sunningdale. Cost: R40. Contact Melanie: 079 161 3999 or melanie@ drumkidz.co.za Durbanville Library story time First Thursday of the month. Time: 10:30am–11am. Venue: Oxford Rd. Cost: free. Contact: 021 970 3094 Fish Hoek Library story time Also a craft hour every Friday morning at 11am for preschoolers. Venue: Civic Centre, Recreation Rd, Fish Hoek. Contact: 021 784 2030 Folio Books story time Suitable for ages 3–9 years. 2 April. Time: 10:30am. Venue: Folio Books, 207 Main Rd, Newlands, opposite Westerford High. Cost: free. Contact: 021 685 7190 or foliobooks@ storm.co.za Friends of Eikendal Library competition Entrants of all ages are invited to get creative and design or
Cape Town Show at the Rainbow Room
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calendar draw a logo for Friends of Eikendal Library. There are prizes to be won. Submit your creation to the Eikendal Library by 26 April. Venue: Van Riebeeck Rd, Eikendal, Kraaifontein. For more info contact Zainonesa: 021 980 6160 Hout Bay Library story time Every Friday for children 2–5 years. An ageappropriate movie is usually screened after the story. Time: 10am–11am. Venue: Melkhout Crescent. Cost: free. Contact: 021 790 2150
Kidz Discovery Club Age-appropriate, professional baby-and-toddler and mother-and-child groups. Time and cost: call to enquire. Venue: The Drive, Camps Bay. Contact Kathy: 083 654 2494 or visit kidzdiscovery.co.za Kloof Street Library story hour Monday 3pm–3:30pm (ages 2 and older) with a little Afrikaans thrown in. Contact: 021 424 3308 Kraaifontein Library Afrikaans and English story time For children 2–10
years. Call Nelia to enquire beforehand. Time: Wednesday 10am. Venue: Brighton Rd. Contact: 021 980 6209 Little Birdy Bookshop story time Time: 12:30pm, every Saturday and Sunday. Venue: Main Rd, Greyton. Cost: free. Contact: 079 350 9658 Rondebosch Library story time Every Wednesday and Friday for preschoolers 3–5 years. Time: 10am. Venue: St Andrews Rd. Contact: 021 689 1100 Somerset West Library For more info contact children’s librarian Paige: 021 850 4458 or 021 850 4526/7 The Playshed Time: 9am–5pm Tuesday– Sunday during the school holiday for play with parents’ supervision. Drop-off mornings on Tuesday and Thursday until 12pm. Phone ahead to book. Contact: 021 801 0141/2
sport and physical activities
Roxy Surf School An all-girls surf school. Time: call to enquire. Venue: Green building, Surfer’s Corner, Muizenberg beach front. Cost: tbc. Contact Robin: 021 788 8687, surf@ roxysurfschool.co.za or visit roxysurfschool.co.za
Children’s capoeira classes Capoeira is a great way for children to exercise while having fun. All ages are welcome – the experienced instructors adapt the exercises according to each child’s age and ability. 5 and 9 April. Time: Tuesday 2pm–3:30pm and Saturday 9:30am–10:30am. Venue: Capoeira Cordão de Ouro Academy, first floor, 53 Castle St, Cape Town. Cost: R70 per class (reduced rate if both classes are attended). For more info: cdo.co.za@ gmail.com Full moon hike Enjoy the sunset over Table Mountain with stunning views of
Full moon hike
the Winelands. 17 April. Time: arrival by 4:45pm, no later than 5:15pm to start hike. Venue: Dirtopia Trail Centre, Delvera Farm, R44 between Klapmuts and Stellenbosch. Cost: adults R50, children under 12 years R20. For bookings or more info: 021 884 4752, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit dirtopia.co.za Laser Games The laser system emits a harmless infrared beam, so no pain or mess. Unlimited ammunition is included and there is no need for uncomfortable protective safety gear. Parents are welcome to join their children. Suitable for 6 years and older. Time: Monday– Sunday 9:30am–11am, 11:30am–1pm,
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1:30pm–3pm, 3:30pm–5pm. Venue: Imhoff Farm, Kommetjie. Cost: R95 per player for a two-hour session. Contact Robyn: 021 790 7603 or email@example.com Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon fun run 22 April. Time: 12pm, 12:30pm, 1:30pm, 2:30pm. Venue: UCT rugby fields, upper campus, Rondebosch. Cost: R20–R25. For more info: visit twooceansmarathon. org.za/race/fun-runs Rugbytots South Africa’s ﬁrst rugbyspeciﬁc play programme for young children. The programme has been designed to develop your child’s physical, psychological and social attributes, as well as gently encouraging rugby-specific skills such as
running with the ball, finding space, kicking, catching, scoring a try and much more. For children 5–7 years. 5, 12, 19, 26 April and 3 May. Time: 4:30pm. Cost: R45 per 45-minute session. Venue: 30 Orange St. Contact: 079 972 1641, jp@rugbytots. co.za. For more info on programmes for children in other age groups and other venues: visit rugbytots.co.za Science Institute of South Africa Kid’s Club This programme offers classes that cover all components of exercise for children of all fitness levels and help them to develop skills while having a good time. Classes are lead by qualified fitness instructors and biokineticists and covers age groups 7–11 years or 12–15 years. They’re open throughout the year and children can enrol for either a school term or a full year. Time: Monday–Thursday 4pm–5pm and Friday 3pm–4pm. Venue: Boundary Rd, Newlands. Cost: available on booking. Contact: 021 659 5600, info@ ssisa.com or visit ssisa.com
only for parents classes, talks and workshops
Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon fun run
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Accredited CPR and first-aid course 16 April. Time: 9:30am–3pm. Venue: Cape Town Medi-Clinic, 21 Hof St. Cost: R250, including a manual and certificate. Contact: 021 300 0661, satrainingcentre@gmail. com or visit momsbabiesnannies.co.za
Ladies’ art and crafts classes
Antenatal and postnatal classes Registered nurse and midwife Sister Tracy Frohling runs classes every Tuesday and Thursday evenings, depending on bookings. Time: 6pm–8pm. Venue: Intercare Medical Centre, cnr Park Dr and Link Rd, Parklands. Cost: tbc. Contact: 082 884 0623 or firstname.lastname@example.org Down Syndrome Inclusive Education Foundation (DSIEF) Focuses on informing parents of children with Down’s syndrome of the concepts of “Early Intervention” and “Inclusion for Life”. Workshops, seminars and talks based on international research. DSIE Foundation is based in the southern suburbs. For more info contact Michele or Martin: 021 797 0502 or Tanja or Marc: 021 712 5552, info@down-syndrome. co.za or visit downsyndrome.co.za
Housekeepers and nannies courses 12 April: Pesach meal, kosher slow-roasted lamb shanks, pumpkin pie, potato kugel, kneidelach, pavlova. 28 April: vegetarian meals including ratatouille and chickpea and courgette curry. 4–6 people per class. Time: 9:15am–12:45pm. Venue: 301 Bowenvale, Beach Rd, Mouille Point. Cost: R300 per student per course includes ingredients, recipe folder and certificate. Contact Janis: 082 319 9215 or visit nicetouch.co.za Kundalini yoga A dynamic yogic form to music includes poses, meditation and deep relaxation. For 16 years and older. 16, 23, 30 April. Time: 12pm–1:30pm. Venue: St Joseph’s Marist College, 21 Belmont Rd, Rondebosch. Cost: R350 for eight weeks. Contact Jai: 021 685 1257, kajl@global. co.za or visit stjosephsaep.co.za
calendar our road system during the 1800s with an eye for the development of passes over the treacherous Cape mountains. Many of these roads are still in use today such as the Bainskloof and Sir Lowry’s Pass – a tribute to the skills in designing and constructing. 20 April. Time: 8pm. Venue: SACS Lecture Theatre, Main St, Newlands. Cost: R20. For more info: visit capenaturalhistoryclub.co.za
on stage and screen
Pilates and vision board workshop
Ladies’ art and crafts classes Fabric painting, decoupage, mosaics, jewellery beading, soap, bath salts and candle making. Time: Wednesday and Saturday 10am–1pm. Venue: opposite China Town, Ottery. Cost: R60 per person per lesson, including materials. Contact: 021 704 1462, 074 106 0713 or email@example.com Learn CPR and save a life Paediatric nursing sister Lee-Ann White runs a CPR course for parents, childminders and au pairs. Discovery Health members earn Vitality Points for attending. 16, 30 April. Time: 10am–12pm. Venue: Pinelands. Cost: R220. Contact Lee-Ann: 021 531 4182 or 072 283 7132 Nanny training workshop 29 March and 5, 12, 16 April. Time: 9:30am. Venue: Cape Town Medi-Clinic, 21 Hof St. Cost: R1 480, including manual and certificate. Booking essential. Contact: 021 300 0661, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit momsbabiesnannies.co.za Pilates and vision board workshop De-stress, relax and reconnect with yourself and your vision. A healthy fun-filled morning of Pilates, meditation and life coaching. 16 April. Time: 9am–12:30pm. Venue: 11 Alexander Rd, Muizenberg. Cost: R250. Contact: 082 319 0731, jenny@jabulitos. co.za or visit jabulitos.com The Colossus of Roads Dave Cowley describes our most respected early road and pass developers in this lecture. Thomas Bain was really responsible for developing
Dekaf Winner of the Golden Ovation Award for Comedy at the National Arts Festival 2010, Dekaf is a black/white comedy, about blacks who think like whites, told by a black guy... who sounds white. 1 and 2 April. Time: 8pm. Venue: Concert Hall, Baxter Theatre, Main Rd, Rondebosch. Cost: R75. For more info: visit baxter.co.za Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi A double bill of two of Puccini’s oneact operas, taken from his Il Trittico, in invigorating new interpretations by young South African directors Matthew Wild and Sandile Kamle. 16, 17, 19, 21 April. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: Artscape Theatre, DF Malan St, CBD. Cost: from R100. Contact: email@example.com What’s In a Name Hear your favourite, hilarious, musical theatre numbers in this comedy revue. Classics like “Maria”, “Mrs Worthington” and “Dammit Janet” don’t disappoint. You’ll even get the inside scoop as to how Otto Tit-sling and Philippe De-Brassiere fought it out to create the world’s first “over-the-shoulder bolder holder”. 13–30 April. Time: Wednesday– Sunday 8:30pm. Venue: Kalk Bay Theatre, 52 Main Rd, Kalk Bay. Cost: R110. Contact: 073 220 5430
out and about Canal Walk Motorshow The biannual Motorshow is back, once again featuring the finest vehicles on the market. 27 April–2 May. Time: 9am–9pm. Venue: throughout the mall. Cost: free. For more info: visit canalwalk.co.za Framing co. inc. 3rd i Gallery showcases local talent with exquisite pieces by Rachelle Bomberg, Craig Foster, Donovan Ward, Lesley-Ann Green, Chantal Coetzee and Sharon Peers. The gallery operates as a studio and exhibition space, and you may well be fortunate enough to see some magic in the making. The
Canal Walk Motorshow
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New! Al-Nisa Maternity Home Cape Town’s first private, non-profit maternity home has opened. It is a midwife-led, womenonly facility, which offers affordable holistic antenatal, birth and postnatal care to women with low-risk pregnancies. Antenatal visits with a midwife are priced at R100 per visit, while Al-Nisa’s Complete Maternity Care package, which includes five antenatal visits, the delivery and two postnatal visits with the baby, is priced at R5 500. The institution offers a payment plan for patients who have booked the Complete Maternity Care package. Since the facility is only geared for low-risk pregnancies, in the instance of birth complications patients are transferred to the relevant government hospital or to the patient’s preferred private hospital. For more info on the facility: 021 696 8892 or visit alnisamaternityhome.co.za
interactive sculpture park in St Andrews Square is across the road. Time: weekdays 9am–5pm, first and last Saturday of the month 10am–1pm. Venue: Framing co. inc. 3rd i Gallery, 95 Waterkant St. Contact: 021 425 2266 or firstname.lastname@example.org
support groups Autism South Africa For more info: 021 557 3573, email@example.com or visit autismsouthafrica.org Cancer Care support group Held on the first Tuesday of every month. Time: 5:30pm. Venue: Panorama Medi-Clinic. Cost: free. Contact Emerentia: 021 930 4245 or Emerentia.Esterhuyse@cancercare.co.za Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa (CHOC) helps parents to meet other parents and survivors. For more info: visit choc.org.za LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) parents support group For gay and lesbian parents and parents-tobe, there are regular meetings to exchange ideas and experiences. Contact the Triangle Project: 021 448 3812, Healht2@triangle. org.za or visit triangle.org.za Safe Schools call centre Educators, learners and parents can call the toll-free number to report violence, sexual abuse, alcohol and drug abuse, vandalism and/ or to report corruption in schools. The call centre also provides information on HIV/Aids, racism and pregnancy. Time: Monday–Friday 8am–7:30pm. Contact: 0800 454 647 Selective Mutism support group For more info on meetings and support: firstname.lastname@example.org. Speak Easy Stuttering support groups. Contact Heather: heatherw50@telkomsa. net or visit speakeasy.org.za
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Tourette’s syndrome support Nicolette (Durbanville): 083 292 5481 and Chuki (Somerset West): 082 924 4909 provide telephonic support and advice to parents of children with Tourette’s syndrome on where to go for professional help. For more support groups visit childmag.co.za/resources/supportgroups
bump, baby & Tot in tow
classes, talks and workshops Free breastfeeding talk Also a demonstration of a double electrical breast pump with midwife Emma Numanoglu. 15 April. Time: 10am–11am. Venue: Rondebosch. Contact Emma: 083 455 8338 or email@example.com La Leche League breastfeeding support groups Panorama Monday 4 April: Contact Carol: 021 558 5319 or Irma: 084 258 8203. Durbanville Tuesday 11 April: Contact Trudy: 021 913 2816 or Tiffany: 021 913 3586. Tableview Tuesday 19 April: Contact Juliet: 021 556 0693 or Elaine 021 976 8537. Milnerton MediClinic Tuesday 5 April: Contact Simela: 021 553 1664. Parow Wednesday 19 April: Contact Dilshaad: 021 930 2475. Time: 10am. Cost: free Musicize classes Songs, nursery rhymes, songs from musicals with instruments, bubbles and hand puppets for babies and toddlers. Time: 2:30pm, every Monday. Venue: 1 Mount Nelson Rd, Sea Point. Cost: R350 per month or R80 per class. Contact: 084 409 1683 or debbyjam@ gmail.com
calendar For more support groups visit childmag.co.za/resources/supportgroups
how to help
Parent Centre moms-to-be and momsand-babies group Time: 10am–12pm, every Thursday. Venue: Kingsbury Hospital, second floor, maternity section, Wilderness Rd, Claremont. Cost: R40, including refreshments. For more info: 021 762 0116 or firstname.lastname@example.org The Mama Bamba Way antenatal weekend workshop Birth preparation classes for creating an empowering and transformative birth experience for women, their partners and their babies. The course consists of 15 hours’ group instruction as well as the Mama Bamba Way book and CD. 9 and 10 April. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: Mama Bamba, 101 St James Place, 39 St James St, Vredehoek. Cost: R1 800 per couple. Contact: 021 461 8257, email@example.com or visit mamabamba.com
playtime and story time Bizzy Bodies Children under 15 months enter free if parents use the coffee shop. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: Bizzy Bodies, 23 Bell Crescent, Westlake Business Park, Tokai. Contact: 021 702 0505, info@bizzybodies. co.za or visit bizzybodies.co.za Clamber Club These toddler groups are divided into three age groups for children between 9 months and three years. The baby group is for babies between 2 and 12 months. Activities focus on movement. Branches in the City Bowl, Somerset West, Blouberg and Paarl. For more info: visit clamberclub.com Jimmy Jungles Secure facilities for toddlers and children from 6 months of age. Branches in Claremont and Tyger Valley. Contact head office: 021 914 1705 or info@ jimmyjungles.co.za Kloof Street Library toddler story time Tuesday 9:30am–10am (0–2 years) with a little Afrikaans thrown in. Contact: 021 424 3308 Moms Club For moms and babies. At least once a month there is a speaker on a babyrelated topic. Time: 10am–11:30am, every Tuesday during term. Venue: Medway Youth Centre, cnr Medway and Milford Rds, Plumstead. Cost: free. Contact Barbara: 074 580 4480 or eachus.rosemary@ gmail.com Observatory Library story time Every Wednesday for children 1–4 years. Time: 11am–11:30am. Venue: Station Rd. Cost: free. Contact: 021 447 9017
Planet Kids baby play date For moms and dads with 6–12 month olds to socialise. Time: Friday mornings 10am–12pm. As they only charge from 10 months old, the younger babies and their parents can join in free. Venue: 3 Wherry Rd, Muizenberg. Cost: 6–9 months free, 10–12 month olds R20–R22 for a once-off session (depending on their age) or R67–R86 for a monthly card of four two-hour sessions. Contact: 021 788 3070 or visit planetkids.co.za Plinka Plonka Play Indoor play area. Time: summer weekdays 9am–5:30pm, weekends 9am–1pm. Venue: 171 Buitenkant St, Gardens. Cost: children under one year enter free, one year and older pay R40 for the first hour. Contact: 021 465 0503, playatplinkaplonka@gmail. com or visit plinkaplonkaplay.com Sea Point Library story time Every Wednesday 10am–11am for preschoolers and younger. Contact: 021 439 7440/1 The Playshed Features a baby coupé where they can crawl and roll as well as a special place for children under 3. Contact: 021 801 0141/2 or firstname.lastname@example.org
support groups Adoption Support Group Contact Jean: 084 685 4839 or ct.adoption.support@ gmail.com Cleft Friends Support For parents with babies born with cleft lips and palates. Contact: email@example.com Cleft lip and palate support For telephonic, professional advice and referral from a speech therapist with years of experience in cleft lip and palate therapy. Contact Ros: 021 404 6459 Hi Hopes Programme Offers families of deaf babies home-based, family-centered support and information. Contact Renee: 021 938 6066, 076 891 8188 or devilliers. firstname.lastname@example.org Little Miracles New support group for parents of premature babies (previously SA Preemies). Contact: 0861 LITTLE, 0861 548 853, 012 333 5359, email@example.com or visit lmps.co.za Postnatal Depression Support Association The organisation offers help for moms, the family and help in pregnancy. You can also join the chat group. Contact the national help-line: sms “help” and your name to 082 882 0072 for them to contact you, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Head office: 021 797 4498 or visit pndsa.org.za
Carel du Toit Centre Teaches deaf children and children with language problems to speak so that they can function optimally in a hearing world. More than 50% of these parents earn less than R500 a month and they need help with everything from hearing aids to transport and sometimes even meals. For more info: visit careldutoit.co.za Help the Rural Child Trust Improves the lives of vulnerable rural children through proceeds raised from its six charity shops, two book shops and four clothing shops in the greater Cape Town area. Help the Rural Child would like the opportunity to sell their quality secondhand books at your school to students, parents, teachers and/or the school library. They are happy to give a presentation at the school to elaborate more on the organisation and the programmes they support. Contact Claire: 071 687 4732 or email@example.com Milk Matters A milk bank that provides pasteurised breast milk to premature, vulnerable babies unable to receive their mother’s own milk for a variety of reasons including illness, transport, social difficulties or medication. Milk Matters supplies milk to Groote Schuur, Tygerberg and Mowbray hospitals and some private hospitals daily. They are getting to a critical point with demand exceeding supply of donor breast milk and case studies now show that those really vulnerable babies who don’t receive breast milk have a high risk of mortality. The risk of a fatal disease causing the stomach lining to break down is very high when premature infants are given formula, so this needs to be avoided at all costs. Venue: Mowbray Maternity Hospital. For more info: 021 659 5599 or 082 895 8004
SALT Projects Sharing in Abundant Life Together (SALT) works in the communities of Table View, Du Noon and Joe Slovo in Milnerton. The Light Bag Project collects food parcels to assist TB and HIV/Aids patients, who are on ARVs and need nutrition to aid their recovery. Many patients on medication also suffer from malnutrition, have families to feed, and are not able to find employment or are too ill to work. One food parcel contains eight basic food items, feeds a family of four for one week and costs R75. Contact Lucy: 021 557 3948, LucyG@viewchurch.co.za or visit saltprojects.org.za Western Cape Cerebral Palsy Association Diagnoses, treats, cares for, trains and provides sheltered employment for people with cerebral palsy. They also advise, aid and train parents and guardians who care for their dependants. The association manages clinics, care centres, residences, work centres, and places of employment and developmental services for people with cerebral palsy in addition to assisting in research into all aspects of the condition. They need to raise funds to execute these functions. Contact Debbie: 021 685 4150, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit wccpa.org.za
Carel du Toit Centre
don’t miss out! For a free listing, email your event to email@example.com or fax it to 021 462 2680. Information must be received by 8 April for the May issue, and must include all relevant details. No guarantee can be given that it will be published. To post an event online, visit childmag.co.za
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itâ€™s party time For more help planning your childâ€™s party visit
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itâ€™s party time
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do you have an SBF? In today’s world everybody needs a Suburban
Joe, Sam and Benj
aising children and running a happy home is tricky. Not because it’s not fun or wildly interesting and diverting, but because it takes up so much time. And most of us, rather than having a village, have full-time jobs. So we all find help where we can. Many have partners to share the load or extended families who help out, and lift clubs and really good teachers and sports coaches and au pairs and fairy godparents and of course, that muchmaligned but stalwart babysitter, the television. But last year, I stumbled across a new category of global village support: the Suburban Best Friend (SBF). I’ve had a GBF (Gay Best Friend) for many years. His penchant for iridescent cocktails, manic dancing and making loved ones sparkle (both literally and figuratively) has been a fabulous help through the sleepless nappied
years, when you just need a break and someone to make you feel fun and beautiful for a few hours. But now GBF Bryan has also settled down, my sons have chosen him as a Fairy Godfather and we are more likely to be found playing elaborate German board games curled up in my lounge than tripping the light fantastic up and down town. At this stage of my life, with school lifts and beach camping trips, sleepovers, wet towels and mouldy lunchboxes, in has sashayed Rosie, the SBF. How do you tell if you have an SBF? She has keys to your house and stocks the Garfield plasters your son prefers. She also tops your cellphone bill as Most Frequently Dialled. But mostly, it’s because you spend a lot of time speaking in practical, staccato Mommy Code. Take the conversation we had last Friday morning. “Gaah! Rosie? I have a last-minute meeting this afternoon. Any way you can pick up my sons after music?” “Sure, 4pm, right? Then I can get my frozen food from your freezer; my electricity is working again. Hey, how about you take out the frozen lamb now, so we can cook it at your place and feed both families while you give my son a haircut?”
“Done. And I have pitas.” “Great. Later. Love you, love your work.” “Ditto.” And, yes, I know many of you have easy, intertwined family relationships, but I come from Protestant stock where you don’t broadcast your domestic problems (yes, I am a bit of a breakthrough sheep in the family) and I don’t have any sisters. So this relationship is a revelation to me. And I am just hoping most of you have a Rosie in your lives too, because wow... I don’t know what I would do without her. But you know what truly makes Rosie an SBF? The fact that last Friday night, after we had all eaten our fill of schwarmas, she leant over and said: “Hey, the husbands are watching sport happily, the children have decided to all sleep in the bedroom fort they made, why don’t we phone Bryan and go try out that new martini bar? And let’s take a taxi; I have a craving for more than three olives, if you know what I mean.” Aah. Gotta love the BFs – in all their guises. Sam Wilson is the Editor-in-Chief of Women24.com, Parent24.com and Food24.com. She hopes Rosie doesn’t get creeped out by this column.
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PHOTOGRAPH: Andreas SpÄth
Best Friend, says SAM WILSON.
Published on Mar 21, 2011