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D U R B A N ’ S

b e s t

g u i d e

f o r

p ar e n t s

the truth about teeth 16 things you

didn’t know


20 spring into action ways to celebrate your heritage

September 2012


or curse? when to ditch the dummy

playing favourites – are you the flavour of the month? co-ed vs single-sex – choosing the right school golf – keep your child on par




Growing up in Pretoria, I looked forward to the arrival of spring with huge excitement. Winters were cold and dry, and yet, come the 1st of September, blossoms would magically appear on the peach trees in our back garden and, more importantly to me, our local swimming pool would be declared officially open. My brother and I would beg to be taken to Hillcrest Swimming Pool where we would queue, patiently waiting for that thrilling moment when the gates would open and we would be allowed to walk through the foot sanitizer to finally dive into the cold, clear blue water. After a couple of lengths we would lie down on the hot cement to warm up, smiling at each other as we relished the feeling that summer had officially begun. Fast forward a generation and I see that same smile on my daughter’s face as she rollerblades through our local park. After a wild and wet winter, spring is in the air and it’s wonderful to see so many families coming out to play. I love that our park can be reached by taxi, train or luxury 4x4 and I love that, unlike Hillcrest Swimming Pool back when I was 10, my daughter gets to play in a park that welcomes and celebrates children from all corners of our diverse city. There is something about our park that makes me feel so proud to be South African. It makes me stand a little taller and smile a little wider so, come the 24th, I know exactly where my family will be celebrating our heritage. Wishing you a happy Heritage Day too.

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Hunter House P U B L I S H I N G

Publisher Lisa Mc Namara •

Editorial Managing Editor Marina Zietsman • Features Editor Anél Lewis • Resource Editor Tamlyn Vincent •

monthly circulation Joburg’s Child magazineTM Cape Town’s Child magazineTM Durban’s Child magazineTM Pretoria’s Child magazineTM

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Durban’s Child magazine TM is published monthly by Hunter House Publishing, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. Office address: 1st Floor, MB House, 641 Peter Mokaba Road, Overport, 4091. Tel: 031 209 2200, fax: 031 207 3429, email: Annual subscriptions (for 11 issues) cost R165, including VAT and postage inside SA. Printed by Paarl Web. Copyright subsists in all work published in Durban’s Child magazine TM . We welcome submissions but retain the unrestricted right to change any received copy. We are under no obligation to return unsolicited copy. The magazine, or part thereof, may not be reproduced or adapted without the prior written permission of the publisher. We take care to ensure our articles, and other editorial content, are accurate and balanced, but cannot accept responsibility for loss, damage or inconvenience that may arise from reading them.

September 2012



september 2012





12 tooth wise

a note from lisa

6 over to you readers respond


features 14 the truth about favourites

 aniella Renzon looks at why children D sometimes latch on to one parent more than the other

16 the next big easy

Lucille Kemp reveals a few things you might not have known about teeth

 olf teaches your child life g lessons, not just ball skills, says Marina Zietsman

18 co-ed or same-sex?  it is not an easy choice; Glynis Horning looks at what might work for your child

7 wins 8 dealing with difference find out if your child is a visual, auditory or kinaesthetic learner. By Marina Zietsman 9 upfront with paul  too many parents allow their children to act like louts, says Paul Kerton 10 best for baby – dummy dilemma Anél Lewis looks at the pros and cons of giving your child a dummy 24 resource – celebrate your roots

22 no place like home Lucille Kemp finds out why so many South Africans return after living abroad

 amlyn Vincent has compiled a list T of 20 reasons why you should be proudly South African

26 a good read

new books for the whole family

28 what’s on in september 34 finishing touch


 Anél Lewis has developed the utmost respect for marathon runners

classified ads 33 let’s party 34 family marketplace

this month’s cover images are supplied by:


September 2012


Cape Town




Rochelle Haisley

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September 2012



responses to “mean gene” article on ADHD (August 2012) ADHD and the gene One of the most frustrating aspects of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder for parents is the apparent subjectiveness of the diagnosis. Even though the criteria are fairly well documented in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition (DSM-IV), and updated and refined in the soon to be published DSM-V, the possibility of a single “test” that would confirm the diagnosis would be great to alleviate anxiety about the diagnosis of the condition and the resultant therapy, management and risks. The popular myth though is that ADHD is a single condition. This is certainly not the case. Symptoms and signs compatible with a diagnosis could be associated with or caused by a whole range of conditions, including brain injury, prematurity, maternal smoking in pregnancy, maternal deprivation – the list expands daily. It is a single phenotype for a whole range of causes, and it’s therefore most unlikely that a single test – blood test or otherwise – would be effective in diagnosing all persons with ADHD. Results from studies about families, adoption and particularly twins have made a strong case for the link of ADHD to a genetic cause. In fact, a genetic influence is thought to be part of the cause in up to 80 percent of persons diagnosed with ADHD. However, no single gene has been found to be consistently linked to ADHD. There is usually great excitement when such a link is shown to be significant, but later followup studies fail to find the same associations, probably because different groups of individuals with ADHD are studied. Finding such a gene marker may have its down side: if one is found to have the gene it can be deduced that one has the diagnosis, but if the gene is not found

over to you popular choice Your magazine holds the record for most popular publication at our information centre. You should see the disappointed faces when we run out of an issue, usually within a week. The comments people enthusiastically make about the magazine are all good. I even have people coming to the mall especially to pick up a copy of Child magazine. A regular fan just came to collect a copy and I asked her why she liked it. She replied with, “Because it’s good”. As they say, “You must be doing something right.” Charles van Rensburg, Mall of Rosebank

magazine on the web Where I live, the moms fight over Child magazine, while the dads have given up on getting their own copies. But now they have proudly announced that they have access to the magazine on the internet. It is such a help for new parents and older parents, as well as for divorced dads who need to know how to feed, bath and put a child to sleep, and what to do with them when they’re awake. Karin Meyer

would that imply that one does not have the diagnosis and will not be able to receive appropriate medical and other intervention? This raises several ethical dilemmas. It is never as simple as it may appear to be at first glance. Although genetic studies offer great promise and there have been significant advances in technology, the translation of genetics research into clinical practice remains a challenge. We should not delay making diagnoses and applying the best interventions because we are waiting for further scientific discoveries. It would be grossly unfair to the population who has to deal with ADHD, and its challenges, on a daily basis. Professor André Venter, Head of the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of the Free State concern about article heading I’m a regular reader of Child magazine and find many of the articles informative and useful. However, I am concerned about a heading for the article on ADD/ADHD entitled “mean gene”. I think the word “mean” is inappropriate and potentially offensive. At best, it’s ambiguous; at worst, it’s harmful. For those not in the know, it suggests ADD/ ADHD children are “mean”, which is not a trait of the condition. Megan Shorey Childmag says Thank you for taking the time to share your sensitivity to our headline. It certainly wasn’t our intention to imply that ADHD children are mean, but rather that certain genes may be problematic because of their possible links to the condition.

Let us know what’s on your mind. Send your letters or comments to or PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010.

important to me and I would love to know how I can work and achieve this. Naomi Fisher

consider all your options In response to Samantha Wilson’s letter “be prepared parents” (August 2012); I did a CPR course when my son was a baby. When he was 13 months old, he choked on a piece of cereal. I followed what I had been taught on the course and gave him the three prescribed hard thumb presses on his back, while he was upside down against my legs. I repeated this, but with no success. My son stopped breathing, his eyes rolled back, he went limp and turned blue. I had been instructed that the Heimlich manoeuvre should never be performed on a child younger than 10. Fortunately, my friend took over and performed the Heimlich manoeuvre and, after two attempts, the piece of cereal came out. This saved my boy’s life. Parents shouldn’t just accept everything they are told. Ask questions and find out what all the options are. Debby

don’t label children work from home I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for almost eight years now. My youngest started preschool this year and I feel I now have some time to do something for myself while still being there for my family. Where can I find a job where I can work from home? I have data capturing and general typing skills. Being a full-time parent is very

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September 2012

In response to a letter from Sandra (August 2012); my son is four years old. He is a natural leader and is built like a little tank. I know that he can get aggressive when he feels “hard done by”. However, I have never seen him hit or push another child without being provoked. He was bullied at his previous school, but learnt to fight back and stand up for himself.

On his first day at his current school, I was called in because he had hit two older children. It turned out that he had acted in self-defence, but he was the only one of the three to be punished. Our son’s teacher said it is because “everybody in the school knows his name, so when something happens, he is blamed”. So my son has been labelled a bully by the parents at the school, just because all the children know his name? It is so unfair. He is a small boy trying to find his way in the world and already people are labelling him. I agree that children should not bully others, but what parents teach with words and actions, sometimes can’t be undone. If the bullying starts with the parents, it sends the wrong message. Parents labelling children is a form of bullying that children pick up and act on. Anonymous

left is right I read the letter in the August 2012 issue, where Anonymous mentions that she thinks left-handed children need more time for tasks. I don’t believe this should be the case at all. I have a left-handed son, aged eight, and I find that he copes just fine. I have never made it an issue that he is left-handed and don’t believe parents should. You can buy left-handed aids to make life easier, if needed. I suggest that maybe her child has weak muscles, which causes her hands to ache when she writes. Ursula

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 september veggie bites toddler talks The Pediasure Toddler Sense seminar covers important issues about raising your toddler, including potty training, discipline, nutrition and more. Ann Richardson, author of Toddler Sense, is joined by guest speakers. Contact: 082 467 8236, or visit One reader stands a chance to win a Pediasure hamper, parenting books, a Toptots hamper, and two tickets to the Toddler Sense Seminar in October, all valued at R3 500. Simply enter via and use the code “Toddler Sense DBN”. Your details will be made available to Toddler Sense.

to enter simply visit

or post your entry to PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. Entries close 30 September 2012. Only one entry per reader.

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Fry’s Vegetarian has a range of meat-free alternatives that are tasty, easy to prepare and contain no egg and dairy. Their products, which are cholesterol-free, have no added MSG or preservatives. So whether you’re a vegetarian, a healthy eater or a supporter of Meat Free Mondays, you will enjoy Fry’s products. For more info, visit One reader stands a chance to win six months’ worth of vouchers for Fry’s Vegetarian products, valued at R2 000. Simply enter via wins-dbn and use the code “Fry’s DBN”. Your details will be made available to Fry’s Vegetarian.

congratulations to our July winners Tina Majlis, Bronwen Delamere, Candice Lewis, Oriel Henry, Roxanne Royen, Lorryn Maujean and Tanya Patten who each win a pair of Crocband Jaunt Kids rain boots and Leigh-Ann Kruger, Mandi Gamley and Paul Watson who each win a Smallprint pendant with their child’s fingerprint, attached to a sterling silver chain.

September 2012


dealing with difference

knowing how to learn MARINA ZIETSMAN looks at the differences between the visual, auditory and


he Visual-Auditory-Kinaesthetic (VAK) learning styles model provides a simple way to explain and understand the way your child processes information. While there is much criticism of this theory, the model is popular with many teachers and gives them a framework to identify the way in which their pupils learn. It allows them to make classes more varied and interesting by applying teaching techniques that will benefit the auditory, kinaesthetic and visual learner. It also gives the child a framework for how to approach certain tasks. While one or two of these learning styles is normally dominant, children use all three modalities, in varying degrees, to process new information and experiences. Frank Coffield, a professor at London University’s Institute of Education, who reviewed 13 models of learning styles, said, “We do students a serious disservice by implying they have only one learning style, rather than a flexible repertoire from which to choose, depending on the context.” There are numerous questionnaires online, such as on and, where you can take an easy test to determine which type of learner you are.

something or do activities like singing. “Such a learner hates comprehension and would rather, for example, after hearing a story, answer questions verbally than write about it, which they’ll find tedious, and do half-heartedly.”

“We tell children to sit still and listen, we read stories, explain the work and ask them questions, which are all auditory skills,” says Douglas-Henry. “Although some teachers do bring kinaesthetic learning into the classroom, it is still mainly

We do students a serious disservice by implying they have only one learning style, rather than a flexible repertoire from which to choose, depending on the context. Kinaesthetic learner: “The preschool environment is perfect for this learner, because children are encouraged to learn through experience, with a lot of movement and tactile learning such as sand play and counting blocks.” But it’s when the kinaesthetic learner gets to primary school, where they enter the 2D world of pencil and paper activities, worksheets, readers, charts and textbooks that they start falling short.

visual and auditory.” Because of this, the happy kinaesthetic learner can become very discouraged, as the information given to him does not make sense.

lend a hand Visual learners: They learn best with visual stimuli such as notes, pictures, charts and written information. It is important to provide visual stimuli with a verbal explanation, says

in the classroom Shannon Douglas-Henry, an occupational therapist from Johannesburg, with a special interest in study skills, explains how a mainstream class set-up can sometimes be a disadvantage. Visual learner: “These learners are at home in the classroom, because it is full of visual stimuli such as posters and charts, but this learner will experience difficulty if information is only presented verbally and not in visual form.” Douglas-Henry adds that the visual learner may forget something that is not written down. Auditory learner: These learners are both advantaged and disadvantaged in the classroom. “The auditory learner does not relate well to visual information and does not see the point in completing worksheet after worksheet, writing out spelling words and copying notes from the board,” says Douglas-Henry. These children are easily labelled “talkative”, because they would rather discuss


September 2012

which one is your child? the visual learner – to see is to understand • learns through seeing information presented in visual forms such as charts, graphs and pictures • is a reader and observer • enjoys visual stimulation • visualizes information in their minds (makes a “movie”) • pays close attention to the facial expressions and body language of others • is very aware of the aesthetics of their environment • is a good and independent learner • is a good organiser • prefers art to music • can switch off when having to listen to verbal instructions

auditory learner – to hear is to understand • is a good speaker and listener • works well in groups • appreciates music and singing • relates to verbal instructions • responds to lectures • is a good problem solver • has strong language skills the kinaesthetic learner – to do is to understand • is good at sport and physical activity • has good motor learning and memory skills • has high levels of energy, good handeye coordination and quick reactions • is good with hands-on tasks • memorises by movement or tactile (touch) information

Douglas-Henry. She offers these other study tips: highlight key words in different colours; make use of mind maps and flow charts to summarize notes; include multi-media when studying; use visual clues to remember keywords; use flashcards; test yourself in writing; organise the work logically and colour code different subjects and sections. Auditory learners: It is vital to explain new information in the classroom. Provide opportunities for the learner to discuss or repeat information verbally and keep written information to a minimum. Also include music and movies wherever possible. Study tips for an auditory learner are: record key words and replay them; make use of rhymes, rap and songs to remember information; explain the work to someone else; include verbal brainstorming; use flashcards and say the words out loud; discuss important points with someone and let someone test the child verbally. Kinaesthetic learners: Anna-Marie Markgraaff, a Cape Town-based psychometrist specialising in psychoeducational assessments of children with learning problems, says, “A child who gives preference to kinaesthetic or tactile learning may present as hyperactive, but would not necessarily have a learning problem.” Markgraaff suggests using such a child to assist with activities to help with their restlessness, such as cleaning the board, handing out books or taking messages. She adds: “For spelling, let the child write the words on the black board or build them on a mat, using cards. To aid with reading, ask the child to read to the class, if they are keen, or let them roleplay a story to aid with comprehension.” With mathematics you can allow the child to use an abacus, if age-appropriate, to act out word sums. Douglas-Henry gives these study tips: do actions or hand symbols when learning new words; include examples – first show and then let the child do; make models out of clay to explain parts; use actual 3D objects where possible; use movement clues to remember key words; use flashcards; write notes on a large white board or poster to include movement; act out processes or events and have frequent stretch and study breaks. magazine durban


kinaesthetic learner in the classroom and offers handy study tips.

upfront with paul

the last supper for social conduct PAUL KERTON gives vent to the total lack of manners he sees in children and urges parents to not let them off the hook.



was having dinner with good friends and their children the other day and, I’m sorry to say, the children ate like pigs. We may as well have thrown the beautifully prepared food into a trough and let them fight over it on the floor. They snatched at the serving plates, gobbled the food with their mouths open while talking and playing with their cellphones and ate with their fingers, which they repeatedly wiped on their T-shirts. Look, I’m no prude; I’ve killed, cooked and eaten food with my bare hands in the bush. Nibbling on a leg of chicken or the remnants of a lamb chop, fair enough, even in a restaurant; but mashed potato? And salad? At the end of the meal they just ran from the table without an “excuse me” or a “thank you”, leaving messy plates, spilt drinks and knives and forks strewn all over the place. I was mesmerised. Watching them I felt physically sick. I couldn’t say anything, obviously; they weren’t my children, but I

magazine durban

Saskia, Paul and Sabina

promised never again to chastise my own children for not impeccably putting their knives and forks together. Overall, my two daughters do generally adhere to the rules and eat like grown-ups. But then, am I being a pompous ass? Who really cares about manners? Clearly a fast-diminishing few of us. Later that evening, I informally challenged one of the boys and asked why he never put his knife and fork together after

a meal? “What is the point?”, fired back the boy. Well, as far as I am concerned, a) it is a universal signal that you have finished the meal and the plate is ready to be taken, b) it makes the plates easier to clear, given that 95 percent of children don’t clear their own plates and c) it signals respect for the host, which generally is the harassed parent who buys, prepares, cooks and serves the meal before clearing up afterwards.

Can you imagine if that parent cared so little about the child that they said, “Get your own dinner. I’m sick of cooking for you and allowing your fussiness: ‘I don’t like this, I like that. Can I have boiled not fried. I don’t like eggs anymore’.” I didn’t, but I almost said to the boy: “When you want to go to the toilet, why do you go upstairs to the toilet, close the door, do what you have to do, pull the chain, put the seat down, wash your hands and come back? What is the point? Why don’t you just roll off the couch, pull your pants down, do what you have to do on the shag pile in front of the fireplace, pull your pants up and roll back onto the sofa? I mean, that way you wouldn’t miss a second of your precious SpongeBob SquarePants, would you?” I’m sure Mom won’t mind clearing it up. Well, not that sure actually. There is a limit to a modern parent’s capitulation. I hope. You can now also follow Paul on Twitter: @fabdad1

September 2012


best for baby

dummy dilemma The battle of the dummy is one that rages in many households, as parents have mixed views about their value. ANÉL LEWIS looks at the pros and cons.

UK psychologist and child development expert Penelope Leach says in her parenting book, Your Baby & Child (Dorling Kindersley), that you should not assume your baby needs a dummy. But if your baby is unsettled and you find that a dummy does help, give it for just a few months and preferably only at bedtime. The dummy will also encourage your baby to self-soothe and is a convenient distraction if they are niggly. Various studies, including one by the American Academy of Pediatrics, suggest that sucking on a dummy may reduce the risk of cot death, or Sudden Infant Death syndrome, although this evidence is not conclusive. Many mothers view dummies as a more palatable alternative to thumb-sucking. Dummies may be given to a premature baby to help develop a weak sucking reflex.

...and against

Linda Thompson, a Cape Town-based speech and language therapist, cautions that prolonged use of a dummy could hamper speech development. One of her patients, four-year-old Julia, struggled with imprecise speech. “Julia arrived with her mother, and the first thing I noticed was a huge dummy in her mouth. She tried to talk to me through the rubber of the dummy and I couldn’t understand what she was saying.” Thompson says prolonged sucking of dummies or digits, such as the thumb, for six hours or more a day, has been associated with the development of an anterior bite. This means that when your child bites down on her back teeth, there is a gap between the upper and lower front teeth. When the soft, malleable cells in a child’s top jaw are replaced with hard bone cells, from about the age of four, the top arch will conform to the shape of the object being sucked. An orthodontist can operate to close the gap when the child is older, but this procedure is invasive and costly, says Thompson. Prevention is better than cure.


September 2012

dummy do’s and don’ts

It may prove difficult to wean your child off the dummy. Children should ideally not be using them after the age of one and definitely not after the age of four, when it could affect their speech and chewing, says Pretoriabased dentist, Dr Emil Jansen. Lactation experts advise that dummy-sucking may interfere with breast-feeding, and therefore encourage mothers to introduce them only once latching has been successfully established. Barbara Chambers, a Cape Town midwife, says one of the reasons dummies are not recommended is that they “dumb down” communication between the baby and their mother. With a dummy in the mouth, the baby cannot indicate that he is hungry. There are also possible links between dummy use and ear infections as well as snoring and sleep apnoea.

Make sure the base of the dummy has holes to prevent a rash from forming. Also, buy a dummy that is the right size for your baby’s face. Opt for dummies without bisphenol A (BPA), an organic compound linked to increased cancer risks. Thompson says there is no evidence that orthodontic dummies are more effective in preventing anterior open bites than conventional dummies. Jansen agrees, saying it is the intensity of the sucking, and not the type of dummy, that affects your child’s teeth. Make sure they are clean and sterilised. Avoid “rinsing” the dummy by putting it in your mouth, as you could pass on germs. Replace dummies that are torn or cracked. They should never be dipped in juice or sweet food, as this could damage your child’s teeth.

Children should ideally not be using them after the age of one and definitely not after the age of four, when it could affect their speech and chewing.

mothers’ dummy-ditching tips Candice Whitehead of Joburg weaned her son off his dummies by cutting down his supply to only three. Eventually there was no dummy left to suck on. Cape Town mother Susie Harris-Leblond decided to chuck the dummy before her son turned two. “We simply said that dummies were for babies and that he couldn’t have them any more. We kept it simple and worked on the theory that it takes three days to break a habit. He cried for a bit and then just accepted it.”

or not... Anya Black of Cape Town was advised to tie the dummy to her child’s teddy bear, so that she would eventually find comfort in the bear, and ditch the dummy. Unfortunately, it hasn’t worked yet, and Lilli is still sucking on her dummy.

magazine durban



important to know

magazine durban

September 2012



tooth wise LUCILLE KEMP speaks to the experts about dental hygiene and discovers some interesting facts about teeth that you may not have known.


Suck it up Many children love sports and fizzy drinks and flavoured milk, which contain huge amounts of sugar. Use straws when drinking these, as this directs the sugary drink away from the teeth.

ou know that your family should visit the dentist twice a year, but what else should you be doing to keep your family’s pearly whites healthy and cavity-free? Dr Janet Gritzman, president of the Paedodontic Society of South Africa and paediatric dentist, Dr Geoff Melman, shed some light on good oral hygiene practices.

Snack attack Instead of allowing children to snack on chocolate, have them nibble on a slice of cheese. Dairy, such as cheese and milk, are alkalinebased and counteract the acids that eat away at your teeth.

Twice a day keeps the dentist away Brushing your teeth, after you’ve flossed, should happen twice a day – after breakfast and just before your child goes to sleep, making sure that they don’t eat or drink anything before they climb into bed.

Safe from stinky breath Get your child into the habit of brushing their tongue, and make sure they get right to the back. Unfortunately, this is close to the gag reflex so take care and scrape gently so as not to damage the tongue. Whether you buy them a tongue scraper or they use their toothbrush, the job is done if the tongue is a healthy pink.

How, not how long Brushing properly is more important than brushing for a certain length of time. Brush all the surfaces of all your child’s teeth – top, front and behind. Gritzman points out that to avoid overbrushing, you should brush your child’s teeth for no longer than two minutes.

An added buffer Gritzman is a strong believer in tooth mousse, which is a toothpaste made from dairy products. A small amount should be rubbed onto the teeth with the finger, just before bedtime. It replenishes the minerals of the tooth structure and significantly reduces tooth decay.

Wash your mouth out Mouth wash with fluoride should preferably be used after breakfast and lunch, and before going to bed at night; half a cap full, swished around the mouth for 20 seconds. After this, do not eat, drink or rinse for at least 30 minutes. The teeth of children under six years old can be wiped with a piece of gauze dipped in fluoride mouth wash.

Start at birth Before your baby gets her first teeth, clean the inside of her mouth with a piece of wet gauze when it is bath time, to help keep the gums clean. Apron strings, please Toddlers and young children don’t have the manual dexterity required to brush properly, so you need to brush for them until they are at least six years old. If your child is more independent than most, then be sure to supervise for as long as possible. Little people love to be big people Along with bedtime, most children loathe that thing that comes before it: brushing their teeth. So make it something to look forward to by brushing your teeth together or letting them sit with you while you clean your own teeth. Also, make it fun by putting up a special star chart on the bathroom wall as an incentive.


September 2012

Be gone bacteria When children take antibiotics or other medicine, which is usually in the form of inviting, sugary syrup, make sure that they rinse out their mouths with water afterwards. A first The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children have their first dentist visit by their first birthday. Regular checkups from a young age can prevent paranoia of the dentist and help make visiting the dentist a lifelong habit. Sweet relief For parents of sugar-hungry children, there is good news: Xylitol can be used as a sugar replacement as it has shown to significantly reverse early signs of tooth decay. Sticky, chewy and sucking foods are bad for the teeth, says Melman, as they spend a long time in the mouth where they are processed by bacteria. Xylitol has anti-bacterial properties as it is not processed by these bacteria, which are responsible for tooth decay. So, buy sweets and chewing gum with Xylitol, as well as Xylitol toothpastes and gels.

Lay a solid foundation Primary or milk teeth play a vital role in the growth and development of your child. They are needed for speech and to bite food, they prevent tongue thrust or the reverse swallow, and even play a major psychological role in your child’s self esteem, says Melman. The primary molars, needed for chewing food, act as a space maintainer to allow the permanent premolars to settle into the correct position. So, it is vitally important to brush and floss your child’s milk teeth twice a day to pave the way for their permanent teeth.



the number of

the number of

milk teeth your

teeth an adult

child will have

should have

magazine durban


Sleep sweet Gritzman can’t stress enough how important it is that babies are not put to bed or left with a bottle of juice, or even milk, as this can cause baby bottle decay, also known as nursing caries. Plain water is the safest drink for your baby between feeds.

Brace yourself for the future The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of any problems, or by no later than the age of seven. Gritzman says that at this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most ideal time to begin treatment.

magazine durban

September 2012



the truth about favourites It can be a secret fear that your child loves your partner more than you, but showing favouritism is not about love, says DANIELLA RENZON.

it’s okay Tanya’s* children did exactly that. After forming a very close bond with their mom, Susy* found a way of connecting with Jeremy*, her father, by playing soccer together in the garden. She loved it so much she joined the school team. The enthralled dad signed up to coach her league team, which strengthened their bond. When Daniel was born, Susy drew much reassurance from her relationship with Jeremy. Soon Daniel couldn’t wait to be like his dad and play soccer too. “Jeremy’s definitely the favourite and the boss,” says Tanya. “We joke about it. I don’t mind, I actually like it – I think it’s good for them – plus it gives me a break. They still come to me for emotional support.” Cohen says their shared love of soccer is healthy because it came naturally and without pressure, while giving them common ground with their dad. Tanya’s secure sense of self has helped her children feel free to explore their own sense of self, in a guilt-free and supportive environment.

Don’t take it personally – you’ll still develop a loving relationship with your child. Remember love and favour are two different things. Initially, children form an attachment to their primary caregiver. Psychologist Sarah-Kate Engelbrecht explains that how you relate to your primary attachment figure sets the tone for how you relate to others later in life. A secure attachment means that Mom is there, available, and can meet the child’s needs, which gives the child confidence to be independent and explore their environment. During this time, she’s the preferred parent. This will fluctuate when a child starts to look to Dad for identity formation, fun and exploration of the world. It also helps to buffer the intensity of the relationship with their mom and in gaining independence. Part of same-sex identity formation begins with toilet training when children notice same-sex similarities. Later, favourites are swapped and you may find a boy sharing interests with their mother, while a girl will want the admiration of their dad.


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“When a mother isn’t secure in her own attachments she can project onto her child,” says Engelbrecht. “A child’s not there to affirm a parent. Asking that of your child can cause an unhealthy enmeshment and exacerbate separation anxiety.” If the primary attachment is an anxious one, the child will be clingy and too preoccupied with mom to explore her environment. Engelbrecht adds that wanting your child to like you can interfere with competent parenting. “Parents that are scared to play ‘bad cop’ become too permissive. While your child might favour you because you’re fun, they actually need boundaries, expectations, structures and discipline for healthy development.” She suggests that both parents share the fun and mundane sides of parenting. If a mom is at home in the week doing all the mundane stuff, dad should do bath and

bedtime on the weekend and free mom up to do something fun with them. Parental favouring becomes a problem when it really alienates one parent and causes dysfunction in the family dynamic; it can be very painful for the “ousted” parent. Certain scenarios can exacerbate it – like when a sibling is born, if Mom suddenly goes back to a full-time job or if one parent has to travel. Feelings of insecurity and possibly displacement, abandonment and anger can influence the child’s behaviour. Divorce can also cause a “favouring” scenario. Cohen warns that favouring in a divorce situation can be a red herring and the important thing to ask is, “What’s the goal of my child’s behaviour?” When Lukshana* got divorced her twins refused to stay at their father’s place. “Understand this behaviour before evaluating it,” says Cohen. “Divorced couples are quick to rubbish each other and this becomes their proof. First, get questions of bad behaviour from either parent out of the way; like, is dad’s behaviour upsetting the children? Are parents badmouthing each other ahead of listening to the children? Consider the possibility that the children aren’t actually commenting

on dad at all. Maybe they’re expressing difficulty at coping with all the changes happening in their world. Perhaps the familiarity and comfort of home helps them manage their own pain and stress from the change.” The twins’ rejection of their father stopped when he remarried and his bachelor pad turned into a home. Being older they had more things in common with him and wanted his involvement.

from the other side When a parent is ousted, the trick is to identify what the real issue is and not confuse it with actually being rejected. Coming in as a step-parent can be tricky too. Like when Liz* met Matt*, his son Jake* was three. Liz says, “They were very close. Jake even slept in the bed with Matt. When I moved in, I quickly became the object of his anger. I tried hard to bond with, and parent Jake, but he constantly rejected me. The rejection was heightened during vulnerable moments like waking in the middle of the night. He’d kick me away, crying for his father, who was often away for work. Sometimes it was so bad I’d call the nanny to come and be with him. It was tough. Matt expected me to be this magazine durban



hen it does come, it hits hard and fast. “Go away! I don’t want you! I want Daddy!” Your once compliant little angel has managed, in one foul swoop, to humiliate you in public (think judgmental aunties and friends at birthday parties) and made you feel utterly rejected. Right? Not if you understand what’s really going on. Many parents will secretly be relieved to know that favouring one parent at certain stages of development is not only normal, but also a necessary part of psychological development. When this happens, the trick is to contain your feelings of exclusion. “Don’t take it personally,” says educational psychologist Sheryl Cohen. “You’ll still develop a loving relationship with your child. Remember love and favour are two different things. Your child will always love and need you. Sometimes children actually need to be able to push you away to know that you accept and love them no matter what. Each parent just fulfils different needs at different times.”

present and all-supportive mother to his child who didn’t love me.” “I knew this was about Jake’s issues, but I was devastated so I spoke to teachers and therapists and read books. Matt began empathising with and supporting me more. I reassured Jake that I wasn’t taking Matt away from him, and that I wouldn’t leave. I even encouraged their closeness. I believed it was good for them: it gave Jake a sense of security and Matt more responsibility. Jake finally accepted me; the bonding just took longer, and we needed help.” “Although Liz was hurt, she knew it wasn’t about her – just a little boy who was struggling,” says Cohen. “She also wasn’t ashamed to ask for help. Matt and Liz worked as a team, using their supportive network to manage a very difficult situation. Parents should do their best to work as a unified front and support each other during this period.” Being the preferred parent can be a fickle experience based on a moment’s whim or on a particular stage or life event affecting the child – it seldom lasts a lifetime. When it does happen, try to use it to gain insight into what your child is really trying to communicate through their behaviour. Ask yourself what the real issue is.

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i’m ousted, what should I do? • F irstly, it’s not only your problem; it’s an issue for both parents to tackle together. Speak to your partner about feeling alienated and hurt. Work it out together. If you can’t, seek professional help. • If you’re the preferred parent, reinforce your alienated partner’s value and place as a parent. Be encouraging and supportive – it’s painful. • Be a team – don’t allow fractions, “Mom and dad will take turns.” Be gentle but firm. Acknowledge the experience of the child, “I know I do it differently, but that’s okay.” • Don’t interfere when the “out” parent is trying. Help create opportunities for that parent to come in. When they do, give them a chance to work it out. Step back and show support and encouragement. • Both parents should do fun and mundane stuff so no-one is only the good or bad cop. • A child needs one-on-one time with each parent every week. Positive feelings should be associated with both parents. • Different parenting styles are okay; just agree on basic ground rules, but don’t disagree in front of the children. • The preferred parent can feel overwhelmed, drained and resentful. Find ways of getting a break too. • It’s okay to comment on a child’s preference, “I can see you really enjoy spending time with Dad these days.” Don’t blame the child for your hurt feelings or force them to choose between parents. Reinforce that they can show a preference but that you still love them. The unconditional love is what they’re looking for. • Discipline your child if they’re disrespectful when showing favourites. Boundaries must be set. • Praise and encourage your child when she responds to the “out” parent’s effort. Avoid scolding her if she goes back to the “in” parent. • Watch what you need and what the child needs. Don’t ask your child to affirm you; that’s not his job. *Due to the sensitive nature of the subject all names have been changed.

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the next big easy Golf is not just about making money and winning big tournaments. It can also

t the tender age of 14 years and six months, Andy Zhang became the youngest golfer to ever play in the US Open. Nobody expected much of the Chinese-born amateur when he played at the Olympic Club in San Francisco earlier this year. After all, he made the line-up after another player withdrew due to injury, and he was set against the best players in the world, on one of the toughest golf stages on the globe. Even though it did not take the teenager long to realize just how challenging the US Open can be, his performance was more than commendable. First of all, he qualified because he was good enough. Second, after an abysmal start, he composed himself like a true pro, settled down, kept his score on a steady eight-over and didn’t end stone-cold last. There’s a lot to be learnt on the green.

nature of the game Golf not only requires physical skill, which involves and develops fundamental body movement, but it also hones a child’s hand-eye coordination, reasoning, planning, visualization, mental development and discipline. Lisa Mackenzie, a golf specialist at the South African Golf


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Institute at the River Club in Cape Town, says the discipline of the game as a whole involves rules, etiquette and the constant need and drive to improve. “This gives juniors a lifelong skill, which will assist them as they get older,” says Mackenzie. “These principles will come through in all areas of their day-to-day lives.” The rules of golf are there to instil a discipline among players to ensure the game is fair and just.

A child grows up a lot faster on a golf course. Golf teaches you how to behave. – Jack Nicklaus Patrick O’Brien, a former Sunshine Tour winner who runs a golf academy in Midstream, Pretoria, confirms how dynamic golf is. “The most important thing that golf teaches children from a young age is to deal with the diversity of the game. Golf is probably the most difficult game to master and even the top professionals still learn new things about the game and themselves every day.” O’Brien says the mental ability to focus and channel your

thoughts, by concentrating, as well as understanding how to control your body, comes together in the perfect golf shot. “That is what we first teach children: the discipline to control the mind and all its powers. We teach them to think positively, but also to accept the outcome, as we cannot always control the result the way we want to.” Mackenzie adds that the etiquette aspect of the game teaches children basic manners as well as respect for their fellow players and their environment. “This enhances a child’s ‘gentlemanly conduct’,” says Mackenzie. Jack Nicklaus, the great American golfer and winner of 20 major championships, named Top Male Golfer of the 20th Century, and father of five and grandfather of 22, once casually remarked: “A child grows up a lot faster on a golf course. Golf teaches you how to behave.”

it’s physical, too Someone once said that golf is a day spent in a round of strenuous idleness. That is not entirely true. O’Brien says golf is as demanding on the body as any other sport, and proper preparation is vital to prevent injuries. “Core strength and balance are of utmost importance to control the golf swing,

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teach your children life-enhancing skills, says MARINA ZIETSMAN.

and because of that, all types of developmental exercises are important when you learn to play golf.” Mackenzie says that fundamental movement skills are best developed between the age of five and 10. Activities such as running, jumping, hopping and skipping and exercises that improve stability, the ABCS – agility, balance, coordination and speed – and kinetic awareness, help with this. “Core power is very important as this enhances balance and dynamic power,” says Mackenzie. Golf players should also be fit enough to walk long distances, so cardio fitness is necessary. O’Brien adds: “Your mental fitness for golf needs to be at the highest level to compete in tournaments, and to achieve that your physical fitness needs to be at its highest level.” Mentally, you need to be able to concentrate for long periods and plan well. And because of the high concentration levels required, players should follow a nutritious diet.

not everyone is a tiger At the end of 2011, Tiger Woods earned a whopping $64 million, or R521 million. Only $2 million was earned on the course, but it does explain why his runabout car is a Porche 2000 Carrera GT. However, the reality is that very few golfers can go professional. For example, only approximately three percent of South Africans make it onto the Sunshine Tour and even less play internationally. “Every year on the South African men’s tour, about 200 to 300 players, both amateur and professional, compete at the

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Q school for 30 tour cards,” says Mackenzie. André Louw, the head teaching professional at the Graeme Francis Golf Academy in Centurion, says the reality is that the cost of travelling and playing professionally can be excessive if you don’t have a sponsor. “Children also have hectic schedules today,” he adds, “and just don’t have enough time to commit to practising and playing the game.” Mackenzie reminds us of the 10-year rule: It takes 10 000 hours of training over 10 years for an able-bodied athlete to reach peak performance. Tiger Woods might have been the youngest US Junior Amateur Champion at age 15, but he started playing golf at the age of three. “The goal for every parent should be to give their child the opportunity to play the game, learn the basics and take it further according to their needs,” says Mackenzie. Golf can be enjoyed at any age and there are various other golf-related careers, including retail, green-keeping and marketing, that can be pursued. Ultimately, golf is not always about the important

trophy. It’s about the journey and what you learn along the way – from others and yourself.

you’re not alone “I have personally trained children as young as four and have seen how many new friends they make by taking part in practices and tournaments,” says Louw. “I have seen how their confidence grows. I have trained children that are hearing-impaired and children diagnosed with ADHD. The difference I’ve seen in these children after playing golf is phenomenal, because golf does not require you to be big, perfect or strong. Handicaps in golf make all participants equal in their own right.” Bobby Jones, one of the most successful amateur golfers ever to compete on a national and international level, sums it up like this: “Golf is the closest game to the game we call life. You get bad breaks from good shots; you get good breaks from bad shots – but you have to play the ball where it lies.”

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co-ed or same-sex? It’s a hot debate for many parents, with strong


s an only child sent to girlsonly private schools I did well enough academically, but with few opportunities to mix with boys, I still vividly recall my awkwardness at my first socials around age 12. Boys were fascinating but foreign creatures and I was unsure how to relate. This is still a major consideration raised by those advocating co-ed schools. “It’s critical to interact easily and naturally with the opposite gender,” says Nicky Whyte, principal of Greenside High, a respected


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co-ed school in Joburg. “Having either all girls or all boys is highly artificial; there’s no place like that in the real world.” I put my two sons in a co-ed government primary school because of that, but also because of its reputation for providing an excellent progressive education. It helped my boys mix comfortably with girls, and produced results that secured both scholarships for secondary school. Yet here’s the thing: both chose a boys-only school. It wasn’t just where their mates were going, they assured me; it had

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claims from both sides, writes GLYNIS HORNING.

a strong academic record and they felt they would do well there. They have and that, of course, is the major consideration raised by those advocating single-sex education. “Our boys don’t have the distraction of the opposite sex at adolescence, and it’s easier to teach them because we can focus on their specific emotional and intellectual needs. Boys and girls are not wired the same,” says Trevor Kershaw, principal at Glenwood Boys High in Durban. Glenwood is one of a handful of singlesex government schools in South Africa, and here, as in Britain, the US and Australia, most schools are co-educational, though singlesex schools are reportedly on the rise. They tend to be private or religious, and it may be this, Kershaw muses, that lends them cachet with some parents. “But the biggest draw card is academic excellence,” he says. “The top performing schools are single sex.”

measuring excellence In the most recent Sunday Times Top 100 Schools survey, 44 were all-girls and 19 allboys schools. And last year it was reported that in the Western Cape, the province with

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the second highest matric pass rate, five of the top 10 performing schools were girls’ schools, four were boys’ schools and just one co-educational. Yet in Gauteng, the province with the highest matric pass rate, only four of the 20 top schools were single-sex. What does this tell us? Very little, says Professor Ruksana Osman, head of Wits

even elude educationists abroad. A recent publication of the American Psychological Association lamented “a dearth of quality studies”, and the fact that “it’s nearly impossible to compare apples to apples when it comes to single-sex versus co-education”. Most research on single-sex education has been with private schools,

The most critical criteria are committed, capable teachers, sound leadership, supportive parents, and children that take responsibility for their learning. – Prof Ruksana Osman, Wits School of Education School of Education. “These results are not enough to determine whether single-sex schools are better than co-educational. There’s been little research on the effects of single-sex and co-ed education in South Africa. We look to international studies, but it’s hard to draw comparisons, as often their samples are from areas with few economic, ethnic or other differences.” Meaningful comparisons between same-sex and co-educational schools

and when state co-ed schools change to single-sex, they often make academic changes, so it’s difficult to attribute gains or losses to any specific measure. “The choice is something parents and children must weigh up for themselves,” says Osman. “Sit with your child and ask them: given your individual temperament, needs and talents, what could you gain from a same-sex or co-ed school, and what could you lose? Look at the plus and

minus points, but also at interesting points such as opportunities to explore things in different ways.” For the main issues to discuss, read “contentions to consider”. In the end it doesn’t matter whether you opt for a single-sex school or co-ed, Osman concludes, so long as it’s a good one. “The most critical criteria are committed, capable teachers, sound leadership, supportive parents, and children that take responsibility for their learning.”

Which type of schooling did you choose for your child?

31% 69% prefer single-sex

prefer co-ed schooling asked you

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contentions to consider


“Boys and girls are wired differently.” The evidence: A 2007 neuro-imaging study by the US National Institute of Mental Health showed that areas of the brain develop in a different sequence and at a different rate in boys and girls; the part most associated with visual processing develops fastest in girls aged six to 10, and in boys after 14 years old. Other studies have shown that language areas in the brains of many boys aged five resemble those of girls aged three, and that boys of five are often developmentally unable to keep still and quiet. Psychologist’s view: “Boys and girls are wired differently and need different methods of instruction,” says Cape Town educational psychologist Rene Daniels. Same-sex schools can cater to different learning styles. One should however bear in mind that the brain grows and develops throughout a person’s life. Exposure to different things and opportunities can culminate in acquiring new and different skills, which may have been stereotyped to a specific sex. In any good educational environment, educators should expose learners to different teaching methodologies and learning styles so that the choice of how to learn becomes a personal one.”


“Girls do better at maths and science in all-girl schools; boys do better in languages and the arts in allboy schools.” The evidence: According to a 2006 Cambridge University study, boys improved in English and foreign languages in singlesex classes, and girls improved in maths and physics. Boys felt freer to talk about aspects of certain set works without girls around, and girls felt less constrained to fit stereotypical expectations. This reinforced a US study that found boys at single-sex schools were twice as likely to pursue “non-macho” interests such as art, music and drama. Psychologist’s view: “Stereotyping can have a self-fulfilling effect and reinforce certain beliefs in both sexes about their abilities in these two learning areas,” says Daniels. “If educators in co-ed schools


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have the same expectations, encourage participation and provide equal learning opportunities to both sexes, the same results can be obtained as in single-sex schools. Educators need to cater to learners’ different personalities, coaching the more introverted of either sex to reveal their strengths, and teaching the more boisterous to allow each one the opportunity to share their talents.”


“Boys and girls mature emotionally at a different pace.” The evidence: Girls mature faster than boys and tend to be more intelligent and more mature until puberty, when boys catch up and can overtake them. The ongoing UK National Child Development Study measured intelligence at ages seven and 11 (before puberty), and found girls slightly but “statistically significantly” more intelligent than boys. The gender difference reversed at 16, when the average IQ for girls is 99,2 and for boys 100,8. Psychologist’s view: “That boys need to use force to stand up for themselves has much to do with the late acquisition of emotional intelligence,” says Daniels. “Girls are socialised to be more empathic and passive. Co-ed as well as single-sex schools need to create opportunities for community service, perhaps reading with orphans at a shelter or visiting old age homes. Parents also play an integral role in developing emotional skills and aiding children’s maturity in the way they rear and interact with them.”


“Adolescent girls and boys (12 to 16) are less distracted, and study and behave better, in single-sex classes.” The evidence: A study by the Australian Council for Educational Research showed that academically, students in singlesex classes scored 15 to 22 percentile ranks higher than those in co-ed. They were also better behaved, found learning more enjoyable and the curriculum more relevant. When UK educator Graham Able compared student performance in 30 single-sex and co-ed schools, he found the academic advantage of singlesex schooling even greater for boys, debunking the common notion that girls do better in single-sex schools, and magazine durban

revealing that boys are “brought on” by the more studious girls in co-ed classes. Psychologist’s view: “Research indicates that single-sex schools improve classroom behaviour and focus,” says Daniels. “Boys won’t have the need to impress or outsmart girls or show off, which causes distraction, and girls won’t have to downplay their strengths. In a co-ed environment, expectations create social pressures in both girls and boys to perform in a particular manner. If educators acknowledge strengths in both sexes at co-ed schools, have the same expectations from all learners, apply firm and consistent discipline and encourage a sound work ethic from both sexes, both can perform and focus equally well.”


“Co-ed schools are better preparation for adult relationships.” The evidence: There has been little research to show that children from co-ed schools go on to have more stable or

fulfilling relationships. A 2002 study in the Journal of Biosocial Sciences found that attending a single-sex school did not affect boys or girls developing relationships during high school or university, and girls from single-sex schools were less likely to have unwanted pregnancies. Psychologist’s view: “Co-ed schools represent a microcosm of society and allow more social interaction with the opposite sex and exposure to deal with social issues in mixed groups,” says Daniels. “However, if single-sex schools arrange social or cultural events with an opposite single-sex school, enough opportunities can be generated. Parents need to create opportunities in their social circle to mix with their children’s cousins or family friends’ children of the opposite sex. Enrol them in drama, karate or dance groups or any other social clubs where both sexes participate and social interaction is enhanced. Such things are not the responsibility of schools alone.”

principals’ views co-ed schooling Nicky Whyte, principal, Greenside High: “In 25 years of teaching co-ed schools, I’ve never seen the progress of either sex affected by them being together. I think our classes and debates are more interesting and intense because of the different perspectives from both genders, and our pupils slot comfortably into tertiary education. Some parents worry about the safety of girls in a co-ed school, given the headlines about rape, but that depends completely on individual schools.” single-sex girls’ schooling Anthea Cereseto, principal, Parktown Girls’ High: “I’ve taught at girls’ schools for 30 years and co-ed for 10 and have seen children happy at both. I think our main advantage is the ability to develop confidence in girls, and I believe they are better prepared for tertiary education because they know how to focus on academic studies. Why should girls spend five years in a high school merely to learn to associate with boys and be the second-class citizens whose needs are generally subservient to boys’ needs?” single-sex boys’ schooling Andri Barnes, deputy head, Glenwood Boys’ High: “For boys who want to get on with learning, enjoy the relaxed camaraderie of other boys, and have classes and extramurals tailored to their strengths, I believe a single-sex school is the answer. Boys can still socialise with girls through the likes of Rotary Interact and school plays where we partner with girls’ schools. I’ve taught co-ed and found girls were more confident and giggly, boys often showed off, and disciplining was more difficult. But there’s a place for both types of schools.”

pupils’ views Tim Botha, 18, Durban computer engineering student: “I was in a co-ed primary (Sarnia), then a boys’ high school for three years (Glenwood), and finished at another co-ed (Kloof High). I was fine with all three because all are good schools. The fact that they were single-sex or co-ed made little difference except that Kloof High felt a bit more relaxed.” Vicki Smith, 20, Cape Town PR intern: “I went to Rustenburg Girls’ School from Grade 2 to matric. After a co-ed pre-primary I couldn’t imagine not having boys around to climb trees with. But I had good teachers, and a dynamic and diverse environment with an array of extramurals, including cricket. I made amazing friends and in Grade 8 we met a group of guys from Rondebosch, our ‘brother’ school, at a camp, which grew wonderful friendships and the occasional relationship. I don’t think an all-girls school was detrimental to developing my social skills. I learnt lots from my girlfriends and was able to truly develop a good sense of self. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong option; it depends on the child.”

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no place like home Many South Africans, having left home in search of a better life, have

outh Africans fly the nest for various reasons. Some go in search of a promising job opportunity, to earn foreign currency and give themselves a financial head start; others want to travel – about 10 years ago it seemed everyone was graduating from university and leaving on a two-year work visa to do some hard time in cold London town. For many, the reasons are emotional and so the circumstances under which they decide to leave are not ideal. South Africa’s sometimes unstable political climate, a lack of faith in our politicians and a growing fear and insecurity about crime, have prompted many a Saffa to jump on the brain-drain train to Australia, chanting that the country is going to the dogs. Bruce Townsend, from Joburg, who relocated to Brisbane when his wife was offered a major IT contract, says on his return to the motherland, “I met people in Australia who have been away for many years and I’m pretty sure they will never return, which is fine. There are others who spend a lot of time affirming their decision to leave. They feed off the bad press South Africa gets to convince themselves that they have made the right decision.” Martine Schaffer, former chief executive officer of Homecoming Revolution, a non-profit organisation that helps expatriates return, says, “It’s the attitude you go with that counts: go because you are being pulled, not pushed; and don’t think that another country is going to be the answer to sorting out issues that exist in your environment – you take your stuff with you.” She goes on to say that if you stay, be aware that South Africa is not perfect and make an attempt to be part of the solution.


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Anyone with a strong “for or against” stance on living in SA will be able to provide endless lists of statistics and case studies to prove their point. However, for many, home is home and the pull back to their birthplace remains strong. Add to that the desire to give your children the childhood you experienced, as well as having them grow up near their grandparents, and the need takes a vice-like grip.

what’s not to love? Often people who have been away from home for an extended period come full circle; finding that they are homesick for the things that initially made it difficult for them to adjust to life in a new country. There are the cultural differences: ever heard a South African complain that the English are miserable and never smile? There could be a language barrier, a new country naturally lacks familiarity, there is no family support and the weather in the northern hemisphere causes many sun-loving South Africans to become seasonally depressed, with many never quite getting used to the colder climate. “What I missed most about SA were the people, the people, the people,” says Bruce. This country has its own special brand of culture, sense of humour and attitude – the English in all their politeness and mild manneredness can easily be affronted by how direct we can be, calling it rude. We, however, call it being down-to-earth, straightforward and to the point and we all get it here in SA. Then there’s our rainbow nation identity; unique and in that young, growing phase where amid the blackouts, crime rate and disillusionment, many are successfully

tapping into the opportunities this country has to offer. You also miss your proximity to nature – paradise is never far from your doorstep in SA, so being stuck in traffic is tempered by mountain views and for some weekday lunch hours can easily be spent at a beach café. Then there’s the way of life; the near-holy ritual of the braai, and one of the biggest nuances between us and Australia, according to David J Smith of The Guardian. The Australian barbie, he says, is actually outdoor stoving where, “with a turn of the valve, a push of the button, the Aussie is cooking his meat on a Liquefied Petroleum Gas stove that just happens to be outside. There is no wood, no charcoal, not even a lowly briquette”.

missing the simple things Ask expats who have returned home what they missed the most and the answers are quite basic. Martine Kotze says, “Woolies food, biltong, the Spur, Table Mountain, our rainbow nation, the birthdays and weddings of our loved ones, African sunsets and the smell of rain on dry land.” For Kirsten Dubberly, it was “family, good weather, the beach and genuine smiles on people’s faces”. Bruce, who has a renewed appreciation for home after being away, says the negatives outweigh the positives only if you allow them to. “With the high crime rate, you need time to adjust back to the realisation that if you are careful, crime does not have to be a ruling factor in your life.” After returning, Martine tries to avoid negativity and enjoys every day in the country that her family can once again call home. Kirsten can’t wait to have that feeling of belonging again.

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returned with a renewed appreciation for their country. By LUCILLE KEMP

If you choose to stay, be aware that SA is not perfect and make an attempt to be part of the solution.

p is for planning If moving house is one of the most stressful things you’ll ever have to do; relocating countries will take years off your life if you’re caught unprepared. Ensuring that everything runs smoothly and perfectly in sync with the transition can become a logistical nightmare. Martine’s family, who were returning from Canada where the school term runs from September to June, needed to decide when to take the children out of school and enrol them in a South African school. There was also the challenge of small but vital things, such as getting a phone line and internet connection and opening bank accounts with no proof of address or utility accounts. Concerns about uprooting yourself and your family, as well as the slow and uneasy process of settling in to a new life, can create emotional upheaval and anxiety about your future. Kirsten’s extended family is worried that, after being in London for seven years, she and her husband won’t be able to find work. But as she puts it, “If we don’t try we won’t know. It’s awful being so far away from close family when you have a baby and, after all, we are coming back with a lot more life experience and a lot more money than the £400 we rocked up with in London.” Homecoming Revolution points out that the real planning begins when you decide you’re coming home and you’ve actually established the moving date. Kirsten had been homesick for years before she and her husband decided they were going to move back and, if left to her own devices, she would have packed up immediately after the decision was made. Fortunately her husband was more sensible. He knew they had to achieve certain goals before they could return so he made the call to stay in London for another 12 months. Homecoming Revolution lays the procedure out clearly, providing different stages of planning – from what to think about with more than six months to go right up to what you should be doing a month before your departure date.

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useful resources • H  omecoming Revolution: visit • South visit • Why I’ll Never Live In Oz Again by Rick Crosier, Andrew Donaldson, Josef Talotta, John Wardell and Tim Richman (Two Dogs, 2008) • My Traitor’s Heart by Rian Malan (Atlantic Monthly Press, 2000) • Should I Stay Or Should I Go? by André Brink, Kevin Bloom, Jacob Dlamini, Kerry Rogers, Liz Butler, Gillian Tucker, Sarah Britten, Sarah Penny, James Carolin, Barry Levy, Anne Townsend, Ian MacDonald, Daniel Ford, Louie Cowan, Ted Botha and Jenni Baxter (Two Dogs, 2010)

homecoming check list • S  tart saving, especially to tide you over in the first few months while you’re looking for work, fitting out a household, buying a car and needing to cover relocation expenses. • Start looking for schools back home. Put the children’s names on waiting lists. Also, you should try to time your return so that you create as little disruption as possible. Martine’s biggest challenge was finding a school when they arrived in May. Her son had to start Grade 0 the following year, but schools had already done their placements. • Send money back home if you still have an account. As you get closer to your moving date, stop spending money on stuff that you will have to ship back. The fatter your wallet, the better. • Invest in property. Often you can get a South African home loan while living and working abroad. You could also start looking for temporary residence. Martine’s family found a flat to stay in for the first couple of weeks, and then they went scouting for

a long-term rental. Staying with family may be an option for some, but most people prefer the privacy of their own space while they adjust. • Organise valid documentation for all parties, including children and foreign spouses. Kirsten did a foreign birth registration through the SA Home Office in London for her UK-born son and she will eventually apply for an SA passport for him. • Look at your lifestyle. Scout the different areas where you could potentially live. Find a good doctor and dentist, a church, restaurants, parks for the children and places to visit. • Look at the cost of living. Kirsten and her husband, in preparing to make the move, are looking at the cost of living: school fees, grocery prices and buying a car, which has helped them figure out how much they should be earning per month. • Arrange a container for your furniture. Kirsten is shipping their home contents back so they have made financial provision to afford it. Information courtesy of

September 2012



celebrate your roots Recognise your South African heritage this month by visiting places that are landmarks of our country’s rich history. By TAMLYN VINCENT

Ecabazini Zulu Cultural village The legacy In the late 1800s, small clans of the Bantu people joined to form the Zulu nation. Their traditional way of life is now an important part of South African heritage. To do This living ethnic Zulu homestead provides an experience of day-to-day Zulu living with beehive huts, traditional dancing, Nguni cattle and Zulu cuisine. Also learn about their crops and medicinal plants. Area Albert Falls, Pietermaritzburg For more info visit

galleries African Art Centre The legacy The centre contributes to the development of artists throughout KZN. Crafters are able to earn an income with their projects. To do The shop and gallery showcase and sell the artists’ paintings and beadwork. Area Florida Rd, Morningside For more info visit

heritage trails Battlefield Tours The legacy This area played host to bloody conflicts, which took place between the British, Boers and Zulus in the 1800s and early 1900s, and shaped the future of South Africa and changed the nature of warfare. To do The Battlefields Route includes an incredible concentration of significant battlefields, and tours give insight into the tactics and dynamics of these battles.


September 2012

Must-see sites include Isandlwana, Blood River, Spion Kop and Rorke’s Drift. Area Northern KwaZulu-Natal For more info visit battlefieldsregionguides.

The INK Writers trail The legacy The INK Writers, Mandla Langa, Sita Gandhi, Ellen Khuzwayo and Herbert Dhlomo were authors living in the Inanda area. To do The trail includes important historical and cultural sites, such as the Phoenix Settlement and Inanda Seminary. The literary tour follows the routes these writers took in their lives. There are also literary guides, maps and tours to help you along the way. Area Inanda, KwaZulu-Natal For more info visit

landscapes Dlinza Forest The legacy Dlinza Forest is abundant and diverse, and has been home to Zulu kings, Norwegian missionaries and British forces, who used the mission as a fort during the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. To do The forest boasts a variety of birdlife, including Trumpeter Hornbills and over 80 species of butterflies. Tree markers tell visitors about the trees, and the Zulu medicinal uses for and myths surrounding them. Hike along several trails, see the forest from the 150m long Aerial Boardwalk, or travel along the Royal Drive, a gravel road built for the 1947 British Royal visit. A visitor centre, bird hide, picnic sites and trained guides are available. Area Eshowe, Northern KwaZulu-Natal For more info visit

Kamerg San Rock Art Trail

museums KwaMuhle Museum The legacy In 1916, the Municipal Native Affairs Department became responsible for the medical examinations, issuing of passbooks, rickshaw licenses and fines, and the organisation of accommodation for native South Africans. To do The museum documents Durban’s past through temporary and permanent exhibitions. A photo gallery, sculpture, mural and muti garden all add to the stories told. Area Bram Fischer Rd, Durban For more info visit

rock art centres Didima Rock Art Centre The legacy There are over 600 known San rock art sites throughout uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park. To do As visitors enter this centre, they pass through a small room reminiscent of a cave, for fireside storytelling. The cultural auditorium houses a replica of the Clarens sandstone overhang and the audiovisual presentation looks at the truth, myth and legend of rock art imagery. Area Cathedral Peak, Drakensberg For more info visit

Kamberg San Rock Art Trail The legacy The San people who lived in the Drakensberg left behind a pictorial heritage in these mountains. To do A three-hour walk takes visitors through the Waterfall Shelter, to the Game Pass Shelter, one of the most significant rock art sites in South Africa. The pictures represent everyday life and hunting trips of the San. Tours are led by knowledgeable community guides from the innovative Interpretive Centre. Area Kamberg Nature Reserve, Drakensberg For more info visit

theatres The Playhouse The legacy The Prince’s Theatre opened its doors in 1926 and the Tudor-styled Playhouse began in 1935. It was converted in the 1980s to create the multi-venue theatre complex of today. To do The Playhouse showcases diverse local and international performances, tours, education and development programmes and other cultural initiatives. Don’t miss out on the special September productions, such as Afrika Raps. Area Anton Lembede St, Durban CBD For more info visit

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cultural villages

tours of monuments, plaques and buildings The Nelson Mandela Capture Precinct The legacy Nelson Mandela was arrested in 1962 on his way back to Joburg from a secret meeting with ANC President Chief Albert Luthuli. To do An impressive 50-pole sculpture has been erected at the site where Mandela was captured. It was unveiled by President Zuma in August 2012. An exhibition documents Mandela’s life, with informative tours for families and schools. Area R103, Lion’s River For more info visit

The Old Fort The legacy Captain Smith established a camp here when the British attempted to take over the Republiek Natalia, set up by the Dutch Voortrekkers. The Dutch besieged the camp and Dick King rode to Grahamstown for reinforcements. A fort was built on the site in 1858. To do This landmark, with artefacts and memorials, offers insight into the history of Port Natal. Visitors to the complex can see a gun from 1782, a military cemetery from the siege of 1842 and numerous plaques. Area KE Masinga Rd, Durban For more info visit

UNESCO world heritage sites in South Africa Cape Floral Region, Western Cape A site made up of eight protected areas covering 553 000 ha, the Cape Floral Region is one of the richest areas for plants in the world. You can explore the many areas in and around Cape Town, including on the slopes and top of Table Mountain, at Cape Point, in the Kirstenbosch National Botanic Garden, and in the Silvermine Nature Reserve. For more info visit

Cradle of Humankind, Sterkfontein Widely recognised as the place from which all of humankind originated, the visitors center for the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site, Maropeng, offers exhibitions and interactive displays that highlight humanity’s origins. Walks and guided tours with scientists are offered around the active digs at Swartkrans and Coopers Cave, with stargazing events at night. For more info visit

Situated just outside of Howick, this bustling indoor market has an indigenous nursery that sells fresh cut flowers. Seedlings are also available. Activities for children

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Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape, Northern Cape Situated in the north west deserts of South Africa, the area is communally owned and managed by the Nama people, who still practise their traditional nomadic lifestyle and migrate across the landscape and collect medicinal plants. Visitors can see ancient engravings of the San, enjoy a donkey cart trip or take a guided tour. For more info visit

Between the 17th and 20th centuries, Robben Island was used at various times as a prison, a hospital for socially unacceptable groups and a military base. Its buildings, particularly those of the late 20th century, such as the maximum security prison for political prisoners, have witnessed the triumph of democracy and freedom over oppression. Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront is the departure point for a 3½-hour trip to Robben Island. For more info: visit

Karkloof Farmer’s Market

and a sand pit. For more info: visit

The area comprises a variety of landforms, including coral reefs, long sandy beaches, coastal dunes, lake systems, swamps, and extensive reed and papyrus wetlands. You can go game- and bird-viewing on self-guided and guided walking trails or drives on the numerous trails and loop roads within the park. You can also go on a guided night drive in the Eastern Shores and uMkhuze as well as kayak, horseride, scuba-dive and snorkel. For more info visit

Robben Island, Table Bay

for fresh, locally grown flowers…

include a jungle gym, pony rides

iSimangaliso Wetland Park, St Lucia, KwaZulu-Natal

Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape, Northern Cape

The Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape, Northern Province An open, expansive savannah contains evidence of a flourishing Iron Age city

that was ruled by an African king almost 1 000 years ago. In 1933 a grave of unknown origin was discovered and said to have contained the largest archaeological gold collection in SubSaharan Africa, the remains of which now lie at the Mapungubwe Museum at the University of Pretoria. You can go on guided tours to the archaeological and cultural sites, self-guided trails, eco routes, San art sites, birding trips and night drives. For more info visit

uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park, Western KwaZulu-Natal For 4 000 years, the San people lived in these mountains, leaving behind one of the biggest and most diverse collections of rock art in Sub-Saharan Africa. uKhahlamba, the Zulu name meaning “barrier of spears”, aptly describes this mountain range that is characterised by rocky peaks and mountain streams. There are numerous hikes, resorts and other activities for families to enjoy. For more info: visit

Vredefort Dome, North West Province Around 2 023 million years ago a giant meteorite struck earth, leaving behind a crater nearly 300 kilometres wide. Called The Vredefort Dome, this is one of the world’s largest and most visible meteorite sites and provides a wealth of geological information. The crater has eroded away over millions of years, but is still visible from the hills near Parys and Vredefort. Hiking in the area gives you a chance to see a variety of plant and bird life. Other activities nearby include horse riding, river rafting or visiting South Africa’s largest wild olive forest. For more info visit

September 2012



a good read for toddlers

Lunchtime By Rebecca Cobb

food, ship friend & fun

(Published by Macmillan Children’s Books, R135) It’s lunchtime for one little girl, but she’s too busy and just not hungry. Her mom, however, will have none of that and she has to stay at the table until she’s finished her lunch. A visiting crocodile, bear and wolf, however, are starving (it’s just as well that children taste revolting), and they help the little girl finish her meal. But as evening approaches, our little heroine is ravenous. She has been playing all day, and dinnertime seems to stay away as her little stomach reminds her with “growls” and “roars”. Will she also offer the next meal to her new friends?

Oh no, George! By Chris Haughton

for preschoolers The Buttons Family – Going to the Doctor By Vivian French and Sue Heap (Published by Walker Books, R70) This book is part of a series of six brilliant new first experiences books about the Buttons family, for children aged three and older. Cherry has a cold but she doesn’t want to go to the doctor. Her mom gently persuades her and when she gets there she finds it’s not scary at all. In fact, she has fun listening to her heartbeat on the stethoscope while her mom gets her medicine. The other books in the series deal with new shoes, staying overnight with Gran, the first day at playschool, the babysitter and going to the dentist. The books include fun “I love the Buttons family” stickers.

(Published by Walker Books, R167) It’s hard work being good all the time, and it’s especially difficult for a dog like George. Harris, his owner, is off to do some shopping. “Will you be good, George?” he asks. George really wants to be, but chocolate cake is just so very delicious, and digging in soil is so much fun and he does love to chase Cat... What will George do now? Chris Haughton’s distinctive artwork perfectly accompanies the innocent charm of affable George, a dog trying to be good. Little ones from as young as four will enjoy this story, and older children will learn the importance of giving your dog his daily exercise.

Zig Zag Zebra By Madeleine Deny Barroux (Published by Barefoot Books, R80) Children who are motivated to draw are preparing to learn to read and write at the same time. Encourage your children to paint, colour, copy, draw and doodle, and you will help them to develop their literacy skills along the way. Zig Zag Zebra offers the perfect way to develop creativity in children between the ages of three and seven. With all kinds of exercises, the book helps small children to master drawing skills, shape recognition, fingerprinting, line drawing, colour combining and composition.

for early graders Vulgar the Viking and the Rock Cake Raiders By Odin Redbeard

Magic Toyshop – Treasure Island Trouble, The Rabbit Rescue and Ragbag Friends By Jessie Little

(Published by Nosy Crow, R79) The Vulgar the Viking series is perfect to get boys from the age of seven hooked on reading. In this edition, Vulgar decides to carry out his own Viking raid: a voyage across the fishpond to plunder the bake-house. But as he and Knut sneak into the cellar to build their longship, Freya, who demands to join the crew, catches them. Crammed into their makeshift vessel, along with Grunt the dog, the trio struggle across the pond and successfully make off with a haul of rock cakes. But when a squabble breaks out on the return journey, the trio end up in the pond, and Vulgar finds himself in very hot water.

(Published by Faber and Faber, R57 each) The Magic Toyshop series of books is perfect for children between the ages of five and seven. Enter the world of the Hoozles – they are not ordinary toys and when they find a special friend in Willow, they come alive. In The Rabbit Rescue naughty Croc causes trouble and Smooches the rabbit needs Willow’s help. Willow can’t wait to go to Smuggler’s Cove in Treasure Island Trouble, but Croc secretly makes his way there as well and is set on making life hard for Willow. In Ragbag Friends, Croc creates his own set of Hoozles from bits and bobs, and Willow feels responsible for finding loving homes for these raggedy toys.


September 2012

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for preteens and teens

for us

Whisper By Alyson Noël

Love, Sex, Fleas, God: Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Dad By Bruce Clark

(Published by Macmillan Children’s Books, R85) This is the fourth book in the moving and uplifting Riley Bloom series, which explores one girl’s adventures in the afterlife. Twelve-year-old Riley Bloom – ace Soul Catcher – faces her toughest challenge yet. She must travel to Ancient Rome and convince dead gladiator, Theocoles, to accept his fate and move on. Then she meets the charming Messalina, who gives Riley a dramatic makeover, transforming her into a beautiful teenager. Finally Riley experiences her first kiss. In a world this enchanting, will she ever want to leave? The series is recommended for children from the age of nine to 12.

Oliver Stranger and the Journey to the Swamps By Dianne Hofmeyr

an african tale

a dad’s story

(Published by Umuzi, R162) Bruce Clark, the world’s best dad, had a nightmare childhood that spewed him out onto the streets at age 16, uneducated and livid. Deep into adulthood he remained pretty much like that, until the love of a good woman grounded him. They got married and, at age 47, he became a father. Love, Sex, Fleas, God is Clark’s terrifically sad and funny account of parenthood seen through the eyes of one who knows about vulnerability; a father who would do anything to protect his children and rear them well and a man who feels a stab every day as his wife leaves for work. Clark’s story is What Women Want turned on its feet. This book makes you laugh and cry. It grips your heart and shows both the adult and child in you how frail and glorious a human life is.

(Published by Tafelberg, R120) Oliver is a boy from Tooting, England, whose frog specialist father has gone missing in Botswana.

A Small Fortune By Rosie Dastgir

Lured away by the evil-minded Alecto, who pretends to be his aunt, Oliver makes friends with Zinzi, a girl who delights in caring for wild animals. The two of them are blindfolded, drugged and taken off into the Okovango Swamps by Alecto and her sidekick Molotse. They have already captured Oliver’s father in their search for frogs, which are destined to be frozen, exported and eaten as sushi. It is up to Oliver and Zinzi to rescue his father and stop Alecto and Molotse’s terrible scheme. Oliver’s letters to his grandmother in Tooting with handwritten inserts and a few drawings liven up the text.

(Published by Quercus, R195) Harris Anwar is a British Pakistani proud of his Eastern heritage. He is also proud to have installed his own central heating; proud of his swanky blue Citroën; even proud to have owned the same Hoover for over 20 years. The only thing rivalling his pride is his Muslim sense of responsibility and obligation. He longs to do well by those dearest to him, whether it’s his 19-year-old daughter, his cousin Nawaz and his family living on top of their burgeoning takeaway in Yorkshire, or his friends and family back in Pakistan. But there ’s a problem: Harris’ best intentions always seem to breed the worst results. And so it’s no surprise that, when he decides to use his divorce settlement for selfless ends, this small fortune brings a huge cost of its own.

parenting books The Ultimate Baby & Toddler Q&A – Your 50 most common questions answered By Netmums and Hollie Smith (Published by Headline Publishers, R207) There are so many vitally important questions for mothers of babies and toddlers, and the answers are here in The Ultimate Baby & Toddler Q&A. This is a comprehensive and accessible handbook from Netmums, the fastest-growing online parents’ organisation in the UK. It includes hundreds of top tips and suggestions from other mothers – real advice that works, from real moms who have experienced what you are going through. Some of the questions asked include: How do I pick him up? Is it okay to bring her into my bed? Is it okay to give him a dummy? When will she sleep through? When should I start weaning him? When will she start crawling? How do I make a start on solids? When will he start talking?

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Brain Development Milestones and Learning By Melodie de Jager (Published by Mind Moves Institute, R240) The author invites her readers to an all-encompassing counselling session answering every possible question parents or parents-to-be might come up with. She addresses the reader at eye-level while sharing her extensive knowledge about a baby’s development. She enables her readers to grasp the perfect plan that underlies early childhood development and parenthood and recognise the wisdom of nature that hides in the natural unfolding of the reflexes. Having read the book, parents and parents-to-be will find themselves in a position to meet the challenge of parenthood with enriched knowledge not only about their baby, but also about their own parental abilities. Order the book on

September 2012



what’s on in september

You can also access the calendar online at

Here’s your guide for what to do, where to go and who to see. Compiled by TAMLYN VINCENT



special events


FUN for children


only for parents


bump, baby & tot in tow


how to help





bump, baby & tot in tow

how to help

Honk! Based on The Ugly Duckling, this is the story of an odd-looking duck.

Barry Hilton See him in his latest comedy act, Stand Up Chameleon.

Hypnobirthing Ballito A useful course on deep relaxation techniques during childbirth.

Santa Shoebox Project Teach your child the joy of giving and register for this project.


September 2012

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East Coast Radio Durban Day Top artists from across the country entertain at this fun family day out.

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September 2012



SPECIAL EVENTS 1 saturday Brown’s school fête This fun family day has tombola, a steel drum band and activities for children. Time: 8:30am. Venue: 28 Mariannridge Rd, Pinetown. Cost: varies. Contact: 031 700 3535 Indigenous Plant Fair Exhibits a variety of plants. Plant and wildlife experts available. Also 2 September. Time: 9am–4pm. Venue: Munies Sports Field, John Zikhali Rd, Berea. Cost: R5 entry. Contact: 031 201 5111 or visit Pooch Meets Play A charity event where dogs can strut their stuff in eight categories, including most pampered and best dressed. Time: 10am–1pm. Venue: The Crescent, Umhlanga Ridge. Cost: varies. Contact: 031 566 2887, vanessa.fraser@purpleplumm. or visit Rocking Summer A spring concert with some of South Africa’s top artists. Time: 6pm–11:45pm. Venue: Wave House, Gateway. Cost: R120. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

5 wednesday Honk! Ugly, an odd-looking baby duck, goes on a quest to find his mother. Ends 9 September. Time: varies. Venue: Seabrooke’s Theatre, Durban High School, Musgrave. Cost: R70. Contact: 031 277 1570 or Secretaries’ Day Go to a mad hatter’s tea party with lunch and entertainment. Time: 12pm. Venue: Anchor Gardens, uShaka Marine World. Cost: R300. Contact Theresa or Nombuso: 031 328 8008, 031 328 8103 or visit

6 thursday Tea with Claire Psychologist, trainer and speaker Claire Newton hosts this talk. High tea rounds off the event. Time: 10am. Venue: Saint James on Venice, Morningside. Cost: R150. Contact Sunet: 031 312 9488

7 friday Double Take stand-up comedy Al Prodgers and Warren Robertson share keen observations and warped explanations. Ends 9 September. Time: varies. Venue: Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Rd, Umbilo. Cost: R100. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

8 saturday

27 thursday

St Mary’s Spring Fling It’s a day of entertainment, with children’s inflatables and rides, a Spar Food Emporium, a craft market and more. Time: 8am–2:30pm. Venue: St Mary’s DSG, Kloof. Cost: free entry. Contact Robyn: 082 321 9330 or Lee:

Clifton Hill Nursery School golf day This event comprises a four-ball golf day. Time: tee-off from 10:30am to 12:10pm. Venue: Cotswold Downs Golf Club, Hillcrest. Cost: four-ball R1 600, individuals R400. Contact Linda: 031 762 1396 or 082 938 7896

9 sunday

28 friday

East Coast Radio Durban Day This event line-up includes Johnny Clegg and The Parlotones. Time: 12pm. Venue: People’s Park, Moses Mabhida Stadium. Cost: R100, children under 12 free. Book through Computicket: visit

Because we can Anthony Stonier and Lisa Bobbert perform a musical revue. Ends 7 October. Time: 8pm, Friday–Saturday; 6:30pm, Sunday. Venue: Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Rd, Umbilo. Cost: R100. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit Stand Up Chameleon Barry Hilton’s show is packed with new material and crazy antics. Ends 30 September. Time: 8pm, Friday–Saturday; 3pm, Sunday. Venue: Sibaya Casino, Umdloti. Cost: R140. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

10 monday Clean Up South Africa Week Everyone can get involved to clean up, recycle and reduce their carbon footprint. Find out more about the Clean Up and Recycle competition and other events: visit or

11 tuesday Madame Zingara’s Theatre of Dreams Enjoy a four-course meal while watching singing, aerobic acts and other fabulous performances. Ends 31 October. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: Suncoast Casino. Cost: R410–R495. Contact: 0861 623 263 (MADAME), boxoffice@madamezingara. com or visit

14 friday ADHD Awareness Day Schools can help create awareness by getting involved in the Ribbon Challenge. Challenge other schools to see who can sell the most ribbons. Ribbons cost R5 each, and schools only pay for the ribbons sold. Contact: info@adhasa. or visit Founder’s Day weekend This includes a fun family day on Sunday. Ends 16 September. Time: varies. Venue: Gordon Road Girls’ School, 69 Gordon Rd, Morningside. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 303 2628 or That’s Racist Trevor Noah returns with his trademark humour. Also 15 September. Time: 8pm. Venue: Playhouse Opera Theatre, Anton Lembede Rd, Durban CBD. Cost: R180. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

15 saturday Afrika Raqs BellyFusion’s annual showcase sees amateur and professional dancers


Mzansi Magic sat Market Day Young performers and entrepreneurs showcase their creative flair. Time: 10am. Venue: Palm Boulevard, Gateway Theatre of Shopping. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit


September 2012

1 September – Pooch Meets Play

perform vibrant dance styles. Time: 3pm and 7:30pm. Venue: Playhouse Drama Theatre, Anton Lembede Rd, Durban CBD. Cost: R80. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

16 sunday The Sunflower Fund Hyper 5km run/walk A fun charity event. Time: 9:30am–11:30am. Venue: Suncoast Casino. Cost: R40, includes Sunflower Fund bandana. Contact: 031 266 1148, or visit

18 tuesday Peter Pan Thomas More College presents Steven Stead and Justin Southey’s muchloved classic, Peter Pan. Ends 21 September. Time: 4pm, Tuesday and Thursday; 6pm, Wednesday and Friday. Venue: 15 Sykes Rd, Kloof. Cost: R35–R45. Contact: 031 764 8640

21 friday Feed the Babies Fund golf day Proceeds go towards feeding orphaned and vulnerable children. Time: 11am. Venue: Beachwood Course, Durban Country Club. Cost: R2 000 per four-ball. Contact Misty: 031 266 8060, 031 266 0014, 082 901 7541 or The Sunday Tribune Garden and Leisure Show This showcase features designer gardens, the hall of orchids, nurseries and specialist growers. Ends 24 September. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: The Royal Showgrounds, Pietermaritzburg. Cost: adults R50, children under 12 R35. Contact: 033 345 6274, info@royalshow. or visit The Witness Hilton Arts Festival Featuring comedy, drama, musical theatre, children’s theatre, a variety of music performances, workshops, art and food. Ends 23 September. Time: varies. Venue: Hilton College, Pietermaritzburg. Cost: varies. For more info: visit White Mountain Festival Enjoy a great line-up of acoustic performances, art and crafts, food stalls, a beer tent and family activities. Ends 24 September. Time: varies. Venue: White Mountain, Estcourt. Cost: R550. Contact: 031 563 0824 or visit

29 saturday National Cupcake Day A mouthwatering event that raises awareness and funds for children suffering with cancer. Bake cupcakes or volunteer on the day. Time: 8am. Venue: Gateway. Cost: R10 donation per cupcake. Contact Sandy: 073 208 6757, or visit

30 sunday Hugh Masakela concert featuring Swazi Dlamini An Old Mutual Music at the Lake concert. Time: 1pm. Venue: Durban Botanic Gardens, Berea. Cost: adults pre-sales R100, on the day R130, children 8–12 years R50. Book through Webtickets: visit

FUN FOR CHILDREN art, culture and science ArtSpace Susan Knight’s Evolving Movement is one of the September exhibitions. Time: 9am–5pm, Monday–Friday; 9am–2pm, Saturday. Venue: 3 Millar Rd, Stamford Hill. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 312 0793 or visit Fun First Friday There are exhibits, craft stations, experiments and workshops. Price includes rides at Mr Funtubbles. 7 September. Time: 9am–9pm. Venue: Upper level, Gateway Theatre of Shopping. Cost: R60. Contact Celiwe: 031 566 8040

21 September – White Mountain Festival

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Botanic Gardens. 9 September. Time: 9:30am–11am. Venue: Durban Botanic Gardens, Berea. Cost: adults R25, children under 12 free. Contact: 031 322 4021 or The Animal Farmyard The venue offers daily milking demonstrations, and pony, tractor and foefie slide rides. Time: 9am–4:30pm, daily; milking 10:30am and 3:30pm. Venue: 3 Lello Rd, Botha’s Hill. Cost: varies. Contact: 031 765 2240 or visit

holiday programmes

Safari Week

African Safari Week Start spring with a roar at this African adventure camp. 30 September–7 October. Time: varies. Venue: Zinkwazi Beach, North Coast. Cost: varies. Contact: 032 485 3778, holidays@ or visit

classes, talks and workshops


Art lessons Learn painting and drawing methods and techniques. Time: 3:30pm–4:30pm, every Thursday. Venue: Rose Hill, Durban North. Cost: R380 per month. Contact Suzette: 074 178 9388 or Children’s yoga Young ones learn to develop strength, flexibility, concentration and coordination. Time: 3:15pm, every Tuesday; 11am, every Saturday. Venue: Centre of Wellbeing, 16 Canberra Ave, Durban North. Cost: R40. Contact Angela: 076 410 1410 or Dance basics A beginner’s group class for the physically disabled starts beginning of September. Time: tbc. Venue: St John the Divine Church, 205 Clark Rd, Glenwood. Cost: free. Contact Janelle: 084 474 0531, or visit Ecokids sprout-it and microgreening workshops Designed for school outings, for children 3–6 years old. Time: varies. Venue: Lucky Bean, 10 Cadmoor Rd, Assagay. Cost: varies. Contact Donnae: 082 216 3892 or visit

I Heart market For hand- and homemade crafts. 1 September. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: Moses Mabhida Stadium, Masabalala Yengwe Ave, Stamford Hill. Contact: Shongweni Farmer’s and Craft Market Organic and local produce and crafts. Time: 6:30am–10:30am, every Saturday. Venue: cnr Kassier Rd and Alverstone Rd, Assagay. Contact Christine: 083 777 1674, or visit The food market For locally produced foods. 29 September. Time: 8am–1pm. Venue: The Hellenic Community Centre, Durban North. Contact: 084 505 0113, or visit Umhlanga Antiques Fair Browse for antiques. 16 September. Time: 9am–3pm. Venue: Umhlanga Centre, 189 Ridge Rd, Umhlanga Rocks. Contact James: 082 821 9031 Wonder Market There is entertainment for children, vintage jewellery, food vendors and more. 2 September. Time: 9am–3pm. Venue: Chris Saunders Park, Gateway. Cost: free entry. Contact: 079 747 7661, or visit

30 September–7 October – African

family outings Book Fair Find popular children’s books at affordable prices. Time: varies. Venue: schools throughout Durban, North Coast and Highway area. Cost: free entry. Contact Kathy: 031 705 7744, info@books2you. or visit Horseback Beach Adventures Picnic and non-stop beach rides available. Closed 7–9 September. Time: 2pm–6pm, Friday– Wednesday. Venue: Durban South. Cost: varies. Contact: 084 467 0752, 081 477 9348, or visit Lucky Bean An indoor playbarn, baby play area, bike track with scooters and a garden. Drumkidz classes available from 5 September. A fun holiday programme starts 28 September. Time: varies. Venue: 10 Cadmoor Rd, Assagay. Cost: varies. Contact Donnae: 082 216 3892 or visit

finding nature and outdoor play Sunday guided tours Discover the plants and gardens inside the Durban magazine durban

on stage and screen

Afrika Raqs A portion of the proceeds goes towards the Rhino Project. 15 September. Time: 3pm and 7:30pm. Venue: Playhouse Drama Theatre, Anton Lembede Rd, Durban CBD. Cost: R80. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit Ben 10 season Leading up to the launch of Ben 10 Omniverse, Cartoon Network is showing every Ben 10 episode and Ben 10 movies. Time: series 7pm, daily; movies 5:30pm, every Friday. Venue: DStv channel 301. For more info: visit East Coast Radio Durban Day 9 September. Time: 12pm. Venue: People’s Park, Moses Mabhida Stadium, Stamford Hill. Cost: R100, children under 12 free. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit Honk! Rising Star Academy presents a youth theatre production based on Hans September 2012


calendar Taekwondo Tornados For exercise, core strength, improved concentration, motor coordination and plenty of fun. For children 3–6 years. Time: 3:30pm, every Wednesday. Venue: Westville Central Library. Cost: R120 per month. Contact Sam: 082 876 0628 or

only for parents classes, talks and workshops

Books and Books

Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling. 5–9 September. Time: varies. Venue: Seabrooke’s Theatre, Durban High School, Musgrave. Cost: R70. Contact: 031 277 1570 or Hugh Masakela concert featuring Swazi Dlamini 30 September. Time: 1pm. Venue: Durban Botanic Gardens, Berea. Cost: R50–R130. Book through Webtickets: visit Peter Pan Thomas More College presents Steven Stead and Justin Southey’s Peter Pan. 18–21 September. Time: 4pm, Tuesday and Thursday; 6pm, Wednesday and Friday. Venue: 15 Sykes Rd, Kloof. Cost: R35–R45. Contact: 031 764 8640 Rocking Summer With The Graeme Watkins Project and David van Vuuren. 1 September. Time: 6pm–11:45pm. Venue: Wave House, Gateway. Cost: R120. Book through Computicket: visit

playtime and story time Akimbo Kids Make the most of their spacious outdoor playground, toddler play area and coffee shop. Saturday morning activities start at 10:30am. Time: 9am–4pm, Tuesday–Sunday. Venue: 40 Meadway Rd, Drummond. Cost: R20 entry for children 1–8 years old. Contact: 031 783 7892, 083 261 2742 or Books and Books Children’s story time. Time: 10am, every Saturday. Venue: shop 42 Kensington Square, 53 Kensington Dr, Durban North. Cost: free. Contact: 031 563 6288 or Steam train rides Ride a miniature steam engine. 9 and 23 September. Time: 11am–4pm. Venue: 4 Hinton Grove, Virginia. Cost: R5 per ride. Contact Gerald: 031 205 1089 or 082 569 1383

sport and physical activities Modern dance class A mix of jazz and contemporary dance styles, for children 4–5 years old. Time: varies. Venue: Hillcrest Sports Club. Cost: R10. Contact: 082 298 8654, or visit


September 2012

Fussy eaters cooking class Get great ideas for recipes and snacks for toddlers, plus advice on nutrition and allergies. 8 September. Time: 3pm–5:30pm. Venue: Coffee Nut Café, Link Hills Centre, Waterfall. Cost: R350. Contact: 082 891 4050, or visit Ladies’ body stretch For ladies only. Time: 8:10am, every Monday and Wednesday. Venue: Lasting Impressions, 35 Caefron Ave, Westville. Cost: R260 per month. Contact: 031 267 0435 or visit Mobile Pilates in Motion One-on-one or group Pilates classes in the comfort of your home. Time: varies, Monday–Friday. Venue: Morningside, Durban North or Upper Highway. Cost: varies. Contact Laura-May: 082 443 4533 or info@pilatesinmotion. or visit Mother’s love afternoon Hear from Bonny Dales about a mother’s love, plus enjoy pasta making, coffee and wine. 15 September. Time: 3:30pm–6pm. Venue: Coffee Nut Café, Link Hills Centre, Waterfall. Cost: R150. Contact: 082 891 4050, or visit Permaculture food gardening for educators Learn about permaculture principles and methods. 21 September. Time: 8:30am–1pm. Venue: Permaculture Training Centre, Durban Botanic Gardens, Berea. Cost: tbc. Contact: 031 322 4021 or

on stage and screen Because We Can A magical mixture of music and comedy. 28 September–7 October. Time: 8pm, Friday–Saturday; 6:30pm, Sunday. Venue: Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Rd, Umbilo. Cost: R100. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit Double Take stand-up comedy Two South African comedians take to the stage. 7–9 September. Time: varies. Venue: Rhumbelow Theatre, Cunningham Rd, Umbilo. Cost: R100. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit Madame Zingara’s Theatre of Dreams A burlesque dinner-cirque spectacular. 11 September–31 October. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: Suncoast Casino, Durban Beach. Cost: R410–R495. Contact: 0861 623 263 (MADAME), boxoffice@madamezingara. com or visit That’s Racist Trevor Noah takes the stage. 14 and 15 September. Time: 8pm. Venue: Playhouse Opera Theatre, Anton Lembede Rd, Durban CBD. Cost: R180. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

Stand Up Chameleon 28–30 September. Time: 8pm, Friday–Saturday; 3pm, Sunday. Venue: Sibaya Casino, Umdloti. Cost: R140. Book through Computicket: 0861 915 8000 or visit

support groups Adhasa support groups Contact Stuart: 031 298 8896 or Robin: 082 499 1344 for details times and support Bipolar Kids South Africa A website that assists parents, family and friends of children with bipolar mood disorder and ADHD. Contact Elisa: 082 780 6335 or Lee: 083 227 2304, or visit Born Sleeping Parents bereaved by stillbirths, miscarriages or neonatal death can share their experiences. Contact: 084 524 1541/2,, visit or visit their Facebook page: Born Sleeping Childhood cancer parent support group Choc schedules regular support meetings. Contact Gill: 084 831 3683 or visit Hi Hopes Home intervention programme for children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Contact: 082 897 1632, dianne.goring@ or visit Reach for Recovery Breast Cancer support group Gets together for bringand-share morning teas. Contact: 031 205 9525 or 072 248 0008 SADAG Support for those suffering from depression or drug abuse or who may be suicidal. For more info: visit

bump, baby & Tot in tow

classes, talks and workshops Edubabe Runs childminder training, first-aid workshops and cooking classes for nannies, au pairs and parents. Time: varies. Venue: Glenwood. Cost: varies. Contact Kate: 071 968 1007 or Hypnobirthing Ballito Learn about deep relaxation during birth. A five-week course

starts 6 September. Time: tbc. Venue: Brettenwood Coastal Estate, Sheffield. Cost: R240 per session, R1 200 for the course. Contact Sonja: 082 446 4879 or Infant massage workshops Contact for upcoming dates and times. Venue: Lasting Impressions, 35 Caefron Ave, Westville. Cost: complete workshop R600. Contact: Pregnancy Yoga Learn breathing techniques, relaxation and more. Time: 3:45pm, every Wednesday; 9:30am, every Saturday. Venue: Centre for Wellbeing, 16 Canberra Ave, Durban North. Cost: R50. Contact Angela: 076 410 1410 or angela@

playtime and story time Clamber Club Movement and stimulation classes for children 1–4 years old. Time: varies. Venue: branches in Ballito, Hillcrest and Kloof. Cost: varies. Contact Ballito: 076 222 2946, Hillcrest: 084 577 7630 or Kloof: 083 259 2746 or visit Moms and Tots and Moms and Babes workshops Stimulates learning and selfconfidence. Time: varies. Venue: branches in Amanzimtoti, Umhlanga, Durban North, Highway area and Glenwood. Cost: varies. Contact: or visit or Toptots Children 8 weeks–4 years can join age-appropriate classes to play and learn. Time: varies. Venue: branches in Durban North, Ballito, Glenwood, Kloof, Hillcrest, Westville and Hilton. Cost: varies. Contact: 031 266 4910, 082 876 7791, info@ or visit

support groups La Leche League Breast-feeding support organisation. Contact Jane: 031 309 1801 or visit Mothers 2 Baby For moms who find motherhood challenging. Booking essential. Time: 10am–11:30am, every third Thursday of the month. Venue: Hillcrest Private Hospital, Kassier Rd. Cost: free. Contact Hayley: 078 640 7949

how to help

8 September – Fussy eaters cooking class

Diabetes SA For assistance and education to diabetics, and sufferers who are less fortunate. Help with donations. Contact: 0861 222 717 or National Annual Motorcycle Toy Run Schools can start collecting toys now for the annual toy run, which takes place 25 November. All toys are donated to local children’s charities. Contact Les: 083 487 6846 or Jo: 072 648 5572 Santa Shoebox Project Collects Christmas gifts for underprivileged children. Choose a child and put together a gift box. Drop-off takes place 24–31 October. For more info: visit

don’t miss out! For a free listing, email your event to or fax it to 031 207 3429. Information must be received by 31 August 2012 for the October issue, and must include all relevant details. No guarantee can be given that it will be published. To post an event online, visit

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it’s party time For more help planning your child’s party visit

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September 2012


finishing touch

between lycra and lace ANÉL LEWIS never strived for an Olympic gold medal, in any sport, but she’ll put on a good show to get fit. self into what I thought was a pair of Lycra shorts and survived the 60-minute class without passing out. As I walked out of the studio, flushed with exertion and pride, a gym instructor tapped me on the shoulder saying, “Erm... you do know that you have a hole in your pants.” It turns out, in the semi-dark, I had donned a pair of my husband’s old cycle pants, which he had discarded because they were torn. And there was not just one little hole, but a lattice of threads holding the pants together, giving new meaning to the term “broekie lace”. Yes, I had spent an entire hour with my derrière in the air, exposing my undies to the hapless spinners behind me. And of course, in my eagerness to get back on the bike, so to speak, I had positioned myself right at the front of the class. After that disastrous reintroduction to physical activity, it was with some

trepidation that I recently found myself at the starting line of a 5km race. I am not a natural born runner. I really believe that if man was meant to run from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, economy airlines would not have been invented. But I’m tired of hearing friends wax lyrical about the joys of running, and I’ve been too embarrassed to venture back into that spinning class. Within a few seconds of the start, I was ready to head home. “Has it been 1km yet?” I wailed, as we took the first corner. By the second kilometre mark, I was almost in tears. It was raining, I was being passed by 10-year-olds running in their coats and winter boots and I couldn’t feel my thighs. Then we caught up with a mother-and-son team. They were laughing as they struggled up the hills. When he faltered, I heard her setting him small goals. “Just run to the end of this street and then we can walk.” When he succeeded, they high-fived each other. She was always

Erin, Anél and Conor

encouraging and although he looked tired, it was apparent that he was motivated to cross the finish line. Beaming, they held hands when they reached the end. I realised then that it’s that kind of sportsmanship that I want to teach my children. So, with spring in the air, I’m going to lace up my tekkies and head outdoors with the family for some fun exercise. But first, I’m going to buy myself new cycling pants. Anél Lewis is Child magazine’s features editor. She’s back at work after a wonderful, but busy, four months on maternity leave. Follow her on Twitter: @LewisAnel

family marketplace


September 2012

magazine durban



’ve never been the sporty type. I managed a bit of netball in junior school and I dragged myself out of bed for 6am swimming training in high school – but it was just for one term and I only did it because I wanted to lose weight for a school dance. A brief flirtation with tennis came to an abrupt end when my mother packed away my racket over the December holidays, to keep it safe. Unfortunately, she forgot that she had stored it, and when the term resumed my racket was nowhere to be found. I still reckon I could have given Serena Williams a run for her money. Anyway, it’s too late to reprise my tennis skills. But, after the birth of my second baby, I’ve decided it’s time to improve my fitness. It started off well enough. I managed to get someone to watch the children so I could hit the gym for a spinning class, at some ungodly hour. I squeezed my flabby

Child Magazine | Durban September 2012  
Child Magazine | Durban September 2012  

Durban's best guide for parents