J O B U R G â€™ S
b e s t
gu i d e
f o r
p a r e n t s
getaways set up camp! we show you where
roads less travelled braaing with Justin Bonello
roughing it on their own is your child ready for their first school camp?
the importance of animals in your childâ€™s life
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I just have to convince my husband. This month’s resource (see page 22) has inspired me to put camping on our family getaway list and to try out as many of the sites as possible, dilapidated two-man tent, Beagles and all. The thought of waking up to the crisp morning air and collecting kindling to build the first fire of the day, fills me with childlike joy. I grew up making fires in our back garden, brewing strong coffee and making hunter’s stew
in my billycan. My dad was a Boy Scout all his life and imparted his fire-making skill and outdoor enthusiasm to me. Any chance of a campfire and I am there. I love building one and tending it until it grows into a pyromaniac’s dream. Thankfully my youngest daughter is also a keen camper, even though she has had to make do with school camps until now, which she loves. Hopefully our enthusiasm will rub off on my husband. I know the Beagles
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are already looking for their spot on the backseat of the car. I may even pack in my dad’s old, beautifully adorned campfire blanket.
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contents march 2014
3 a note from lisa
8 upfront with paul we easily fall into
6 over to you readers respond 19 dad’s blog Marc de Chazal is impressed by two energetic, young entrepreneurs he recently met
the trap of thinking that we are the parental experts, says Paul Kerton
10 pregnancy news – the right fit Marina Zietsman looks at how to choose the correct maternity bra
11 best for baby – prepare for takeoff flying long distance
features 14 is your child camp ready? Christina Castle looks at how to “let go” when it’s time for your child’s first school camp
16 school matters stick to a few basic rules and getting your child into Grade 1 won’t be such a nightmare, says Marina Zietsman
20 more than just a pet Tamlyn Vincent explains how children can learn a lot about, and from, animals by spending time with them
39 braaing at its best master outdoor cook, Justin Bonello, shares recipes from his latest book, Roads Less Travelled: The Ultimate Braai Master Second Series
with your baby can be a different experience each time. By Cassandra Shaw
12 dealing with difference – left of centre Lucille Kemp looks at the obstacles “lefties” have to face in a right-handed world
22 resource – happy campers Simone Jeffery gives you a list of family-friendly camp sites not too far from Joburg
26 a good read for the whole family 29 what’s on in march 38 finishing touch Cassandra Shaw travelled the world as a child, and she wants her son to have the same experience
9 hooked on fish there are many health benefits to eating fish, but we should think wisely about what type of fish we eat, advises Marc de Chazal
35 family marketplace 36 let’s party
this month’s cover images are supplied by:
Lisa Jacobs Photography facebook.com/ lisajacobsphotography
over to you
before going home, magazine is used as a classroom tool Your magazine that arrives in our mailbox, and which we hand out to the learners, has some great articles in it that we share in the homeroom classes. We have done this a couple of times with the Grade 6 group and it helps them to see that this magazine can be useful. The article we will look at sharing this month is “it’s not just a rumour” (February 2014). It is always a good topic to discuss with middle school students and even with the elementary grades. Thought I’d share the idea, as perhaps other teachers might like to try it too. Jan
“moody” friend I have been reading your magazine for the past two months and I find it very informative. The only problem is that I get it from a friend, so if she is not in a good mood she does not lend it to me. Please tell me where can I get a monthly copy? Lindiwe M Zwane Childmag says You can subscribe to the magazine for R165 (11 issues). Contact Nicolene at subs@childmag. co.za. Schools and organisations can also email her and ask to be put on the waiting list.
Let us know what’s on your mind. Send your letters or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010.
being a class rep
dealing with bullies
I just received the latest copy of the Child magazine on my desk (February 2014) and wish I had read the article “are you up to it?”, on how to be a good class rep this time last year, after having done a terrible job of it for the whole of last year… Thanks for a great resource! Jude It’s an absolutely brilliant and accurate article. As the chairlady of the school PTA, I will be using this as the benchmark communication tool for new class reps. Michelle Bennetts
The school my children attend recently launched an initiative to help combat any potential drug or bullying related problem. It consists of an anonymous communication platform where parents and learners are able to report any unacceptable behaviour, safely. I find it difficult to put into words just how the general morale has changed for the better. There have been times I would have liked to phone the headmaster, only to be implored by both my children not to do so for fear of victimisation. I wish this had been started years ago. Daniel Alves
competitive sport in primary schools
I loved Cassandra Shaw’s “finishing touch” column in February. I recall an interview with Oprah Winfrey where she asked a guest what the greatest gift his mother had given him was. His reply: “that her eyes lit up every time she saw me.” I too feel this way when I see my precious daughter now aged five. My partner often says that we both light up in each other’s presence. Our smiles are an extension of that love that flows through our being. I also hope to “embarrass” her for many years to come, and that she will also understand it one day too. Liesl Robbins
I really enjoyed the article “active for life” (February 2014). It has opened the eyes of quite a few people that I spoke to. Well done on highlighting a really important matter and helping parents think about sport from a different perspective. Susan Thank you for your excellent magazine and thoughtprovoking articles. The article on competitive sport was an excellent read and confirmed my view on competitive sport for primary school children. We live in a part of the
country where it’s commonplace to think that the earlier children start to play competitive sport, the better they will become. The contrary has shown to be true and the result is that children are ill-equipped physically as well as emotionally, and thus give up sooner. I commend Prof Noakes for his contribution to this article and was interested to read that while the South African Department of Sports and Recreation has endorsed the Canadian Model for Long-Term Athlete Development, this model is not being implemented in schools. I feel as South Africans we are being let down by the government as there is no policy for what is appropriate sport participation in schools and as a result schools are taking it into their own hands and are starting children at a very young age. Not only would an across-the-board policy benefit schools such as ours, where children are starting competitive sport too young, but it would also help the children in the rural and township areas who are missing out on appropriate sport participation. Jane Walker
school uniforms have a place In response to the letter “ban school uniforms” (February 2014): the letter writer clearly did not have a good experience wearing school uniforms during her school career. I’d like to suggest that the environment she was in was too strict for her personality and thus the positive arguments for having school uniforms don’t hold true for
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her. Indeed, I would steer away from getting too strict with school uniforms, or making them too expensive, because then we are missing the point and causing unpleasantness and distress in an area that doesn’t warrant it. I attended school in America and did not have the option of wearing a school uniform. I was pleasantly surprised when I came to South Africa and saw the children wearing school uniforms, but not for any of the reasons sited in the letter. For me, school uniforms take some pressure off for two reasons. The first is that there is no question as to what the child should wear to school. In the chaos of young children waking up early for school, organising breakfast, lunch, snacks and drinks in the early rush of the morning, having to choose what to wear would just be an added nuisance. With uniforms, the children know exactly what they must wear every day. They don’t have to sulk over that favourite shirt that they wanted to wear that they can’t find or that isn’t clean. The adults in the house also know that those school uniforms have to be ready to wear during the week. Other clothes are not the priority. Secondly, having gone to a school that held the gamut of children from wealthy families to children from less financially flush families, clothing became a sign of status. It tangibly separates the groups of children between those who can afford the newest fashions and brands from those whose families cannot. I don’t believe
that is an attribute to inculcate in children if it can be avoided. I believe for that reason alone, school uniforms have their place. I feel it is not fair to compare South Africa to New Zealand, a first world country. South Africa has many challenges that first world countries do not face, such as lack of education, poverty, HIV and extreme violence against women and children. These are all sources of stress that other countries do not experience, at least not to the same degree. If the children and their families have something constant that they can rely on (however small), such as in the form of school uniforms, then I believe that is a positive thing. Michele Engelberg
thanks for a great getaway Thanks to Child mag and Xama Adventures on the Breede River for the online competition we won. It was stunning. We had no cellphone reception and all we could do was enjoy quality family time. A big thank you. Jemine subscribe to our newsletter and win Our wins have moved online. Please subscribe to our newsletter and enter our weekly competitions. To subscribe, visit childmag.co.za
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.
Post a comment online at childmag.co.za
upfront with paul
other people’s children –
we know best When it comes to parenting, who is the true expert? By PAUL KERTON
icture Nigel, the hapless early caveman struggling with the concept of fire. Now if some alpha male – Brett – hadn’t known best, intervened and said, “give me the damn sticks, I’ll get the fire going” then we would all probably still be wandering around today, covered in duvets trying our best to keep warm. It’s a natural human survival instinct that we each think we know best, especially when it comes to children. This is not altogether true, but what is true is that we each think we know best for our own children, depending on our religion, culture, ethics and family traditions. And the way in which we were individually brought up.
Clearly this is not altogether true either; witness the mother who fed her daughter nothing but chicken nuggets from McDonald’s for 15 years before the daughter fell over and almost died of renal failure. Or the couple that thought it a good idea, while drunk, to film their four year olds having a brutal fistfight and post it on YouTube. There are a million examples of parents who thought they knew best, but who knew the square root of nothing. Luckily, most of us get the child-rearing right or at least muscle through on this side of the line between right and wrong. A wise friend once described child-rearing as “a series of near misses” in that it only takes a lack of concentration for a nanosecond and the child has rolled off the deck, fallen
into the pool, eaten the rat poison, picked up the carving knife... just check out the Red Cross Children’s Hospital. But there is always something about other people’s children that will irritate other parents. The way they eat a meal, the way they dress, what they are allowed to watch on TV, how late they stay up, how they behave in public – every parameter of a child’s life is scrutinised and judged according to that adult’s own level of “knowing best”. You can see other parents looking on in public and sucking air through their teeth thinking, “I’d never let my Mary wear those shorts” or, my personal favourite, “can’t they control that child?” when a toddler is throwing a wobbler. This is a mixture of self-appointed superiority, snobbery and the thinking: “we
know best”. As you know, I write about parenting all the time and am supposed to know better than most, but I am not immune to having the finger pointed: “he doesn’t do this” and “he’s bad at that” and the extremely upsetting, “have you seen his driving?” The thing is, other people’s children are not our children (thank goodness). We each can only do our best whether we know best or not and, for me, if you can get a child from zero to their teens, and more especially their twenties, with all their faculties still working, while instilling ambition, humour, a good personality and a halfway decent moral compass, then you have done your best. Just go easy on the chicken nuggets. Follow Paul on Twitter: @fabdad1
ILLUSTRATION: MARK VINCER
Saskia, Paul and Sabina
eafood is a healthy and popular choice for many of us. Children are encouraged to eat fish at least twice a week, not only because it’s a great source of lean protein, but also because it provides vitamins and minerals essential for growth and development. Fatty fish, such as salmon, has additional health benefits because it’s the best source of omega-3 fatty acids in the ocean. We need these essential fats in our diet for brain development and other critical functions. So, fish is good for us, just as long as we avoid the choking hazard of bones and we’re mindful of the toxins present in some seafood. This is where things get a bit tricky. Fatty fish, which is the main source of omega-3 fatty acids, often has high levels of toxins, such as mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). “These toxins can be particularly harmful to children’s growing bodies and rapidly developing brains,” says Leigh-Ann Silber, a dietician practicing in Joburg who has
Marc de Chazal describes the health benefits of fish for children, what types to eat, and other important factors to consider. a special interest in children’s nutrition. “When we eat seafood loaded with contaminants, we store these pollutants in our bodies, which build up over time. Young children and pregnant women are particularly sensitive to these contaminants, because they can be transferred across the placenta and through breast milk. Mercury and PCBs can negatively affect cognitive development, motor skills, reproductive organs and other critical developmental functions in children,” adds Silber. For safer fish options with the least mercury, it’s advisable to look lower in
the food web and to avoid the larger fish. Good local examples are anchovies and sardines. It’s also a good idea to serve a variety of seafood to reduce the likelihood of regular exposure to contaminated fish. “If your children will go for it, try them on oily fish such as salmon, sardines, pilchards and tuna twice a week, but we need to be careful of the sodium content in tinned fish,” says Silber. “Fresh and frozen fish are both great. To reap the best benefits, I recommend that you bake, grill, poach, steam or stir-fry your fish.”
We have explored less than 5% of our oceans, but we’ve still managed to overfish many species. So in a concerted effort to improve the conservation of seafood and to help us consume fish with a clearer conscience, the Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI) encourages us to question what we’re eating, where it comes from and how it was caught or farmed. They’ve made it really easy for us by listing seafood according to best choice, such as South African offshore trawled hake; seafood we should think twice about buying, such as prawns; and then fish we should not buy because the species are either unsustainable or illegal to sell here. You can find these lists at wwf.org.za/ sassi or simply text the name of the fish in question to 079 499 8795 and you’ll receive a message telling you to “eat up”, “think twice” or “hit the brakes”. Also look out for the MSC ecolabel endorsing wildcaptured fisheries’ products.
the right fit Your body changes and does all sorts of crazy things before and after the birth of your child. MARINA ZIETSMAN looks at the science of shopping for maternity and breast-feeding bras.
“A good nursing and breast-feeding bra can make all the difference to a nursing mom, by providing support, improving comfort and making breast-feeding easier and more accessible,” says Roland Bouttell of Carriwell SA, a leading international maternity and breast-feeding lingerie company. He adds that a new and expecting mom should keep in mind that she will need a variety of bras for different uses and occasions, depending on what stage of her pregnancy or breast-feeding she is in. There are three important features that go into choosing a good bra: fit, function and fashion.
fit the mould You’ll experience weight gain, an expanding rib cage and, later in pregnancy, mammary glands that are preparing to make milk for your baby. The size of a nursing breast can fluctuate many times during the day, and as much as two cup sizes in between feeds, so it is important to take this into consideration when choosing a bra. The golden rule as to when to get your first maternity bra, is if your current bra becomes too tight. Ideally, a woman will get her first
nursing bras during the final stage of pregnancy – around 38 weeks. “For this stage, the focus is on comfort. She will be looking to purchase at least two non-underwire nursing bras. Supportive fabrics such as microfibre that allow for stretch and easy care are the best choices. Seamless fabric (seamless microfibre) will also be more comfortable as seams can often irritate sore, cracked or sensitive nipples,” says Bouttell.
the expert’s tips for fitting the right bra • A nursing bra cup should always be comfortable and not too tight, providing support while not squashing the breast tissue. • Fabric, especially for a newly nursing mom, should allow for breast change. • Bands should be snug but not tight, and support the breasts from the back rather than pulling down on the shoulders. • Once breast-feeding is established, a woman can use an underwire bra for daytime wear, however a non-underwire bra is highly recommended, especially for sleeping.
function is key Some nursing bras open from snaps or zippers at the centre or below the cup, while others open at the top of the cup. There are soft-cup bras designed to be lifted above the breasts or pushed to the side. Since all openings have their benefits, a drop-cup with a one-handed release clasp/ mechanism is definitely the preferred style. More important is the ease of opening, and the quality and strength of the clip. “The bra will be opened countless times. So, it is very important that the mom is able to unfasten and fasten the bra easily, and preferably one-handed, since she will often be doing so with her hands full,” says Bouttell. Other indicators to take note of include choosing a quality bra that is well stitched, has good quality elastics that will wash well and wide straps to support heavier breasts.
fashion Maternity bras don’t need to be matronly. You can choose from various makes and manufacturers, and still feel like a woman and not a nursemaid, as long as you keep functionality and fit as part of the criteria.
choosing the correct bra
c prepare for
The thought of an upcoming
flight with your baby might be keeping you up at night. But, a little prep work, resourcefulness and patience may help to improve your experience. By CASSANDRA SHAW
ertain that her five-month-old son would be “screeching like a banshee… not sleeping, not eating – just being a general gremlin” and that everyone on board would nominate her and her husband as “prime candidates for Worst Parents of the Year prize”, Irene Walker was not looking forward to flying overseas with her child. But, despite her worries, she found that it was much easier than she’d imagined. “There was plenty of white noise to lull [him] to sleep.” Sarah Williams had a similar experience the first time she flew with her daughter, Lucy, who was one month old at the time. Yet, 10 months later, when they decided to fly again, the experience was a bit trickier. Lucy had difficulty sleeping and the bassinet was too small. Boredom also set in, and Sarah and her husband had to take turns walking Lucy up and down the plane or playing with the tap in the bathroom to keep her entertained. But, in spite of these difficulties, they survived – thanks to the help of other passengers, and by making use of the things they had brought along and found around them. Flying with young children is not always easy, and everyone’s experiences are usually different, but as long as you’re prepared and take things as they come, you will survive your flight. In the hopes of putting your mind at ease and preparing you for any turbulence ahead, both Sarah and Irene have offered some helpful pointers for the trip.
what surprised them most? • How kind, helpful and understanding complete strangers can be. • That their airline did not have purified water or any water that reached boiling point on board. • How well a young baby can sleep. • How much patience they had as mothers.
best for baby
tips for takeoff Check ahead Know what you can bring on board and what the airline will provide in terms of a baby meal, milk, seating, bedding and entertainment. You can bring food and milk for your baby, but you may have to taste it at security. Pack smart and keep organised Make sure to have a well-packed nappy bag that includes incidentals: something for privacy while breastfeeding, a dummy, toys and comfort items. Pack something new to grab their attention and some old favourites that remind them of home. Just don’t go overboard as space is a commodity, and “more” doesn’t always make things easier. Also, know where your stuff is at all times and keep your belongings organised. This helps at security and onboard. Time to shine You don’t have to dress up as a purple dinosaur, but try singing softly to them. Comfort and practicality Keep them in comfortable clothing, and if they’re crawling, make sure it’s something you don’t mind getting dirty. A change of clothes and something for them to sleep in can also help. Be aware of their routine when you book your flight. Give them something to drink or a dummy to suck on for takeoff and landing, to help with air pressure, and give them lots of cuddles. Everyday issues Most airlines are accommodating. If your bottle is dirty, ask the flight attendant to clean it for you. Although it’s cramped, there are usually nappy changing facilities in the bathroom. Don’t stress Relax and take things as they come. Also, don’t stress about grouchy passengers – most airlines supply earplugs anyway.
dealing with difference
left of centre Left-handed children face a world that is wired to be right-handed. LUCILLE KEMP offers
some points to help them develop soundly.
s a left-hander growing up in the late 80s and early 90s, I don’t remember much fuss being made about my “difference”. I do remember some teachers would place me on the left-hand side of a desk pairing so I wouldn’t bump elbows with my right-handed classmates. I also remember it hurt when I tried to use their scissors. I mostly remember how Nicholas Waring, a fellow lefty in my primary school years, used to write like a “weirdo”. Imagine Nicholas, being told to “face the front”, with his wrist curved over and around his words in order to stay a precious few centimetres ahead of the sentence so as not to smudge the ink and to have a clear view of what he was writing. If he was left to his own devices he would sit with the left-hand side of his body over his workbook, which lay on its right-hand side. It sounds involved, but that’s because he was a left-hander trying to develop in a right-hander’s world. I’m not sure why I didn’t do what Nicholas did. I think I might have been all too aware of my difference and forced myself to replicate the right-handers surrounding me who wrote “straight up”, because goodness knows I didn’t want to be different at the age of seven, eight, nine, 10... Worldwide, about 10% to 13% of the total population is left-handed, says Joburgbased occupational therapist Kathryn Nish. But a rather hands-on, right-handed mom to a lefty, Tracy van der Merwe, notes that “Four years ago Denise Pape did a South African classroom study and found that in the five-year-old group there was 25% left-handedness. There is a genetic component to handedness so, the more lefties there are, the more there will be.”
There is a genetic component to handedness so, the more lefties there are, the more there will be. He cannot do the tasks fast enough… his work smudges and doesn’t look great… he feels uncomfortable with some tasks and does not want to do them again… He is different, and children don’t like different. As the majority of the world’s population is right-handed, the challenges that left-handers face are numerous. Right-handed people don’t have to think too hard about picking up a pen and writing as it flows comfortably from left to right. Just so, it is comfortable for the lefty to go from right to left but that’s not going to happen in the western world. The following details the classic features of the left-handed child’s challenges. ergonomic The child may not have the correct equipment and knowledge of the correct positioning at their desk. teaching method Many teachers may not be aware of the correct teaching method for letter formation, and worksheets and activities may not be presented and taught correctly. writing from left to right Lefties have to push when they write causing strain on the hand, wrist and shoulder as they squeeze the pen hard to prevent their fingers from slipping down the pen or pencil. wrist-hooking This occurs in order to see their work as they write and to prevent smudging. Hooking places pressure on the wrist and can cause compression of the nerves, leading to carpal tunnel syndrome. It may cause fatigue and a slow pace of writing. emotional Feeling different and being slow to finish work, possibly causes feelings of failure and unworthiness. Nish has had a left-handed boy in occupational therapy for one and a half years. “He had a low self-esteem, struggled to make friends and was shy and mistrustful of others. He was encouraged to use his right hand over his left, even though he was showing
clear left-hand preferences at about five years of age.” Though this should no longer be happening, Nish still finds children are forced to change their natural preference. “This requires education and compromise to ensure that the best functional outcome for the child is achieved.” Forcing a child to change their natural hand preference does not change their brain dominance and so it will affect concentration, memory, spatial, speech, reading, writing and fine motor (handwriting) skills.
different, not abnormal Clare Winter is a left-handed primary school teacher who models with both her leftand right-hand when teaching handwriting. “However, this is not the norm so more emphasis needs to be placed on this during teacher training.” Nish sees Clare’s method as a wonderful way to both model and normalise left-handedness. “The sooner teachers accommodate left-handed students, the sooner acceptance and awareness will reign.” “A simple adaptation of the teaching methods and presentation of information would make a huge difference to the lefties in the classroom,” says Nish. Through gross motor activities, 3D and 2D perceptual games and finally paper-based activities, the left-handed boy Nish was working with resolved his spatial perceptual difficulties, is far more confident, is able to correctly orientate his letters and now even has a couple of friends on the playground.
do more “Put yourself in the shoes of a lefty in order to understand the struggles they experience every day. Help them with the things you can, and show empathy where you cannot. Attend or facilitate a workshop at your child’s school, where all of these things are discussed,” says Tracy. If your left-handed child is experiencing serious setbacks, seek professional assistance from an occupational therapist, but if you start with some of these points you could already be making a difference to your left-handed learner’s day. • Make sure the appropriate learning tools are being used as this will make fine motor tasks easier: left-handed scissors; a left-handed sharpener, if they are experiencing difficulties sharpening with a right-handed one; thin workbooks, so that they can rest their hands on the page and start close to the margin; a chart showing left-handed letter formation; and an incline board and non-smudge pens or pencils. • Position their work to the right of a table as this will decrease the wrist-hooking that occurs and the problems associated with it. • Demonstrate left-handed letter formation with your left hand so that the child can model you and see the actual flow of writing. • Teach the correct progression in art projects, which is right to left when colouring and painting, so they stay within the lines and don’t smudge their work. • Left-handed children should also learn to progress correctly in cutting, which is in a clockwise direction (right-handers cut anti-clockwise). • Support your left-handed child by advocating for them and teaching them how to advocate for themselves. • Ensure that the basics are in place, namely equipment and positioning. • Use a special grip on the pencil to help the fingers relax and not grip so tightly or slip down the pencil. • When copying a letter, put that letter at the top of a page or on the right-hand side so they don’t have to lift their hand while copying. • Symmetry drawings flipped to the other side of the page means the lefty won’t have to lift their hands while trying to complete the task. • As a right-hander teaching skills such as knitting, fastening shoelaces or using cutlery correctly – place yourself opposite the child and let them copy you. If she copies while facing you she is learning the left-handed way. To purchase left-handed learning tools, visit lefthandlearning.co.za magazine joburg
your child’s life
is your child
camp ready? CHRISTINA CASTLE pitches the question and discovers that, more often than not, our children are ready to head off to camp long
y parting words to my 16 year old were: “Be sensible. Drink lots of water. Use sunscreen.” He was about to embark on a three-week journey into manhood, deep in the Cederberg mountains. Yes, my lip was quivering and I was desperately fighting back the tears. “Ja, ja, I know. I’ll be fine, Mom,” he reassured me as he slung his backpack over his shoulder, gave me a fat hug and disappeared onto a bus. And I knew he would be. Years of overnight camps with the school, tours of sorts, sleepovers and holidays away with friends had prepared him (and me) for this journey. From the age of nine my children have been exposed to sleepover camps with the school. Camps are an annual event. Each year as the children mature, the independence, the social and physical skills required are challenged just a little bit more. What starts as an overnight stay in a cabin in Grade 4 quickly becomes a fend-for-yourself few days under the watchful eye of the teachers in Grade 7
and eventually a man-making three weeks in the wild in Grade 10. While they are fun and physical, the school is acutely aware of the varying stages of physical, social and emotional readiness across the age groups. Their precamp preparation with the children addresses all aspects of readiness and the skills, responsibilities and anxieties that go with it. However, the reality of sleepover camps is not quite so textbook. Some children quite simply do not sleep out. The separation is just too much. Fears and other anxieties kick in. Or they just don’t operate well out of their comfort zones. While children should never feel pressured to go to camp, schools do expect your child to attend their camps; and they are more than equipped with the experience and expertise to help your child over this hurdle. Despite the wobbles and anxieties, school and commercial camps equip our children with skills they will carry for life. The independence, confidence, social
before we are ready to let them go.
skills and self-discipline it builds are priceless, and strengthens the more your child is exposed to these environments. While experts say the ideal age to kickoff your child’s camp career is between eight and 10 years old, your child will let you know soon enough if he’s ready or not.
let him decide if he wants to go to camp It’s not a case of sign him up and ask him later. Your child first needs to express an interest in going away to camp. While you may plant the seed, allow him to make the decision himself as to whether he goes or not. Even the most camp-hardy child may not want to go to camp. Maybe he just wants to take time out at home after a busy school term. The decision ultimately should be his.
choose a camp that is appropriate While many children love the idea of learning to water ski, how many are really keen to do it intensely for a week? Ok, I’m all for “you never know until you try”, but you and your child need to be realistic about their genuine interests and staying power, if choosing a camp aimed at a specific activity. Not to mention the fact that a full day of waterskiing can be exhausting even for the most experienced water-skier. Many camps offer children a variety of activities – art in the morning, abseiling in the afternoon and singing at sunset. Your child is guaranteed to find his feet and dabble in activities he has never considered before. Varied activities are enriching and provide a great environment to make new friends. What’s more, camps often vary in length. Know what is right for your child. Be sure
that your child is comfortable with being away from home for that amount of time.
manage your child’s expectations It has been found that children who had positive expectations of camp, had good experiences at camp. Take away the mystery of the camp. Go over the itinerary in detail with him. While new and exciting experiences are a given, discuss the dayto-day goings on positively to overcome any anxiety. However, don’t oversell the camp or make it into something that it quite clearly is not.
friends or no friends? It’s always easier to enter a new situation when you have a couple of mates on your side. That said, camp is a breeding ground for new friendships. Existing friendships may restrict the opportunity to get to know others. It’s often too easy to team up with someone you know. If your child is going to camp with a friend, make sure they know to give each other space and are comfortable with each other when they decide to team up with someone new.
be upfront about his fears and anxieties Don’t be afraid to share your child’s camp fears and anxieties with those in charge. They will want to know exactly what to expect. Remember they are experts at this. Don’t think it’s just your child who is feeling uneasy; there are plenty of others in exactly the same situation.
help your child prepare for camp Include your child in the camp preparation process. He will feel more confident about heading off if he’s been involved right from the beginning – from decision-making to packing his own bag. While it’s wise for you to oversee exactly what’s going into the bag, let him follow the kit list and take responsibility for it. At least he’ll know where to find his undies (not that he’s likely to change them for the duration of the camp. The same goes for the toothbrush). Bags are packed and he’s ready to go. No matter what age they are, sending our children off to camp does get the lip quivering – yours more than his. Hang in there; the benefits are worth it. And for the record, my 16 year old returned from his man-making adventure in one piece, a little sunburnt, very much on the nose, hydrated, hungry and hairy. I gave him another fat hug and my eyes began to water. Yes, I did miss him terribly, but he really did stink. Visit childmag.co.za/content/campready-jhb for a few ideas on overnight and day camps in your area.
school matters Your child needs to start Grade 1, but all the rules, laws and paperwork involved drive many parents up the wall. MARINA ZIETSMAN puts the basics into context.
The Department of Basic Education has clear guidelines on how to register your child for Grade 1. You should apply at a public school in the year prior to that in which your child needs to start. Find out from the schools in your area when registration opens and applications close. Applicants must be five years old turning six, or older by 30 June the following year. If your child is younger than the required age, and you still wish to enrol them, you can apply to the principal for exemption. Such an application must be accompanied by a school readiness report, which can be supplied by a psychologist, or a progress report from a qualified educator. If your application is unsuccessful, you must be given the reasons in writing. You are also free to appeal this decision with the Member of the Executive Council (the MEC of a province is the cabinet of the provincial government). In the Western Cape it’s known as the Provincial Cabinet. Independent schools can also make provision for under-age learners “if it can be shown that exceptional circumstances exist, which necessitate the admission of an underage learner because admission would be in his or her best interest”. However, most independent schools prefer to admit learners to Grade 1 who are six years old in January, in the start of the school year. Schools start accepting learners at the beginning of the preceding year, and you should get an answer in writing from them. Follow up with the school if you don’t. Diane Fraser, marketer at St Peter’s Boys School, an independent school in Joburg, says to ensure a place in an independent school, parents should “fill in the application forms soon after the child’s birth”. Des Hugo, junior school headmistress at St Mary’s School, an independent school in Waverley, Joburg, agrees with this and adds: “Parents should consider applying for the Grade R year or at the school’s preprimary facility they’re interested in. This becomes more important if the family has no previous links to the school.” You are free to choose whether to register your child at a public school or at an independent school. Public schools are state controlled and independent schools are privately owned. Independent schools must be registered with the Provincial Education Department, and public schools must be established by the MEC for education in the province. You can check with the Provincial Education Department if a school is registered before you make any payments. You’ll need the following forms to register at a public school: 1) an application from the school, to be collected from the school, 2) an official birth certificate, and 3) an immunisation card. If your child is not a South African citizen, you’ll need: 1) a study permit, and 2) a temporary or permanent residence permit or proof that you have applied for permission to stay in South Africa.
what the law says
in the zone Feeder zones do exist for public schools, and these are established by the Department of Basic Education in consultation with the school governing body (SGB). Feeder zones aren’t necessarily geographically adjacent to each other, so find out from the school you’re interested in if you fall in theirs. The main objective of feeder zones is to indicate to schools which children should be prioritised for admission. Children outside the feeder zone of a school are allowed to apply, but will be placed on a waiting list if needed. The preference order of admission to schools is: 1) learners whose parents live in the feeder zone, at their own address or at their employer’s address, 2) learners whose parents’ work address is in the feeder zone, and 3) other learners, based on a first-come, first-served basis. “Parents often think that they live in the area and therefore are zoned for the school and need only apply the year prior to the start of school. Zoning only applies to public schools and not to independent schools,” says Fraser.
Contact the school and make sure you know how things work and what you’ll need to provide. a foot in the door Parents must be careful not to assume that having an older brother or sister in a preferred school would mean automatic admission for younger siblings. Junita Hensel, secretary at Sea Point Primary, a public school in Cape Town, says, “siblings do get preference, and children of old boys and old girls are looked at ‘favourably’.” Check with your school of choice that these criteria do exist. Fraser says, “Each child would need his or her own application form to be submitted regardless of whether a sibling has already been applied for. Siblings often do get preference, but only if all the correct paperwork and applications were also timeous.” Also, don’t assume that sister and brother schools have the same admissions policy, and make sure schools are in fact sister/brother schools. A reader of Child magazine wrote about her disappointment when her daughter was not admitted to an all-girls’ school. Her son attended an all-boys’ school, which she believed was the brother school to the all-girls’ school she had applied at. However, further investigation showed that the schools have similar names, as they’re both situated in the same suburb, but they are, in fact, not a brother/sister school. Hugo says, “There is variation in the admission policies of schools. In many cases, siblings do get preference, as do children of staff members and alumni. There is often no formal reciprocal arrangement with brother/ sister schools, but schools do try to keep families together, if places are available.”
the bottom line Most schools feel that parents leave their child’s registration too late. In order to avoid any administrative red tape, register your child at the school of your choice well in advance. Contact the school and make sure you know how things work and what you’ll need to provide. Don’t base any decisions on assumptions. Even if your child has the right to an education and has laws protecting him, it’s imperative that parents adhere to the few simple rules regarding school admissions in order to have their child start their school career hassle-free.
your child’s rights Missing birth certificate Learners must be accepted unconditionally, but a copy must be obtained from the Department of Home Affairs. No immunisation card Learners must be admitted, but thoroughly advised by the school on how to get immunised. Paying school fees It is illegal for schools to require a copy of a utility bill to determine whether the parent or guardian can afford to pay school fees. The law says, “no learner may be refused admission to a public school on the grounds that his/ her parent/caregiver is unable to pay, or has not paid school fees that have been lawfully determined.” Parents who cannot pay school fees are urged to consult with the school about applying for exemption from fees. Schools can, however, take parents to court if they refuse to pay school fees, but only after the exemption criteria have been applied and the parent is still liable to pay such fees. The learner must remain in school while the case is on. Registration fees Certain schools will charge you a fee when you register. Admission tests Public schools are not allowed to administer any tests related to the admission of a learner. Full classes Schools cannot refuse to admit a learner from their feeder zone. If full-class capacity has been reached, it’s the responsibility of the school and the heads of department to ensure all learners find a place at another school. Fee-paying schools have the right to limit the amount of learners per class to the maximum set by the school. According to the Department of Basic Education, “The right not to charge school fees is limited to the schools that have been declared ‘no-fee schools’. The names of these schools are published in the Provincial Gazette and the criteria to determine the ‘no-fee schools’ is based on the economic level of the community around the school.”
Race, religion and language No discrimination will be tolerated regarding these points. The same goes for pregnant learners and those that are HIV positive. Learners are expected to wear the official school uniform, without any additions to the uniform that are not in accordance with the regulations. Ask the school you want to register with for their code of conduct to establish what is permitted and what isn’t. Waiting lists Before the school year starts, the school and the Department of Basic Education must find a place for children on a public school waiting list. Fraser suggests you apply to at least two to three schools. “If parents have not heard anything by mid-year, prior to the start, the parents should contact the school for updated information.” Hugo adds: “Apply to as many schools as possible in the area you live, especially if you do not have other children already at a school, or are not a staff member or an alumni.” Hugo says if your child is not on a waiting list, they will never have an opportunity to be considered. She adds that schools are unable to inform parents on how long they will be on a waiting list, as the school only fills places from the list when families relocate or leave the school. “Generally, schools become aware of a family’s intention to leave one term prior to the date of leaving,” she adds. Special education needs Public schools must admit learners with special education needs, where it is reasonably practical, and schools are encouraged to make the necessary arrangements as far as possible to make facilities accessible to such learners. If a school cannot provide this, the principal and the school must refer the case to the Department of Basic Education to have the learner admitted to a suitable public school. Hensel says Sea Point Primary does accommodate children with special needs, but “on condition that the child receives adequate remedial support and has come from a remedial school.”
resources • education.gov.za • isasa.org • erp.org.za
lemonade and the future Knock, knock... MARC DE CHAZAL meets two entrepreneurial spirits selling lemonade in his building.
live in an apartment complex inhabited by a number of families. Every now and then I hear a baby crying at night, which brings back distant memories of that particular parental challenge. So glad that’s in the past. And I often see young children from different apartments playing hide-and-seek in the courtyard or other games that don’t break windows. Of course, that also brings back plenty of memories, especially those of when I got to play all sorts of silly games with my child. How time flies. One day, there was a knock on my door. As my complex is access controlled, it had to be a neighbour. When I opened the door, I was a little surprised and a bit bemused to see two children who both spoke at the same time, inviting me to please come and buy some lemonade from their stand in the courtyard. “How much?,” I asked. “Two rand,” they both said, each holding two fingers in the air in case I wasn’t quite sure how many rands that was. “Wow, that’s very cheap,” I told
them. But I was in the middle of something, so I donated two rand to their worthy cause instead. They seemed happy with that deal and they headed off to find more prospective customers. On another day, I was walking through the courtyard to get to my apartment, and who should be selling lemonade again? You guessed it, the same little entrepreneurs who knocked on my door. The price had shot up from two rand to five rand for a tiny cup of sweet cool drink, but I told them it was a terrific bargain and I wished them every success after forking out my shiny coin and downing the beverage. These are tomorrow’s business leaders. Possibly. I do hope they make a good go of it.
They seemed happy with that deal and they headed off to find more prospective customers.
Read more of Marc’s weekly parenting blogs on childmag.co.za/dad-blog
more than just a pet There is a lot that children can learn about animals. There is also a lot they can learn from
them. Tamlyn Vincent explores the many benefits that spending time with animals can offer.
oey, our mini dachshund is defleaing my son, causing fits of giggles. He buries his hand up his sleeve, driving Zoey crazy and making her nibble even harder. Reggie, our other sausage, tries to nuzzle his way in, but he’s just looking for a scratch. Laughter and enjoyment aren’t the only benefits of having two dogs share our home. My son throws balls for them, but they never relinquish their prize. They’ve never seen the point in giving back the ball. So to reclaim it, we have to play chase. And, of course, the dogs are useful at mealtimes. My son has quickly learnt that they’ll happily eat anything he doesn’t want, including tomatoes.
can also reduce blood pressure and decrease stress. A dog’s ability to help with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder has seen trauma dogs being used in crisis situations like school shootings. And because children often respond well to animals, they are used in a variety of therapy treatments. Children can learn about animals from books, or wildlife films. Through animal interactions, children can learn empathy and responsibility, while learning about these animals. While this is apparent with pets, it also becomes clear when children visit animal shelters or wildlife sanctuaries. There is also knowledge to be gained from spending time at certain zoos and aquariums.
Spending time with animals has many benefits for children. As animals don’t judge, children are often likely to talk to pets, improving self-confidence. Dr Marieanna le Roux, chair of Pets as Therapy in Cape Town, says this quality in animals can improve reading skills as children who are struggling with reading can practise with their dog. There are health benefits as well. Walking or running with dogs means more exercise. Interacting with pets
Owning a pet can develop a nurturing instinct in children, says Dr Zee Akoojee, a Cape Town vet. Children develop a caring attitude and self-confidence from looking after pets. Children also need to learn the importance of caring for something without receiving anything in return, says Akoojee. Some of the responsibilities of having a pet include making sure there is always fresh water, cleaning up after the pet, feeding it and taking it for walks. So, before getting a pet, make sure your children are ready.
four-legged friends animal aid
Teach them that a pet is for life, advises Akojee, and can’t be ignored when it’s no longer cute. “The entire family should be on board,” says Akoojee. Work together to find a pet that suits your family’s lifestyle, considering the space you have, the time and energy you can dedicate to the pet and remembering the basic costs and vet’s bills. Children who don’t have their own dog could walk dogs for friends or neighbours, letting them interact with animals and exercise, while teaching them responsibility. Another option for families with pets is to visit retirement villages or hospitals. Families can sign up to organisations like Pets as Therapy, which takes dogs, and a few cats, to visit these places. “When you see the faces of the people you’re visiting, you know you’ve done something good,” says Le Roux. The pets like the attention too. However, Le Roux says that not all dogs like getting patted, and not all people want to be visited, so children should go with an adult and only take their dog if it has the right temperament.
shelters and sanctuaries Children should learn about caring for people, animals and the environment, so they develop a caring, socially minded attitude that will stay with them, says Janet Legemaate, education officer at Durban’s Kloof and Highway SPCA. Visiting animal shelters or wildlife sanctuaries teaches children about the needs of animals. Children also learn about conservation and what it means to give back. Parents should show children what shelters need to care for animals and together think of ways to help, suggests Legemaate. Depending on the shelter, children need to be a certain age to volunteer, but there are other ways to help. “Bring dog biscuits to feed the dogs,” says Legemaate, or buy a bag of food. Look out for educational opportunities at wildlife sanctuaries and shelters or visit them as a family.
aquariums, zoos and game reserves animal books for children Toddlers How Do Dinosaurs Love Their Dogs? by Jane Yolen – T-Rexes model both good and bad petcare behaviours. (Blue Sky Press, 2010) Tails Are Not For Pulling by Elizabeth Verdick – The book is about showing children how to love pets gently. (Free Spirit Publishing, 2005) Peek-a-Boo Pets by Francesca Ferri – Play peek-aboo with pets. (Barron’s Educational Series, 2009) Preschoolers A Home for Dixie by Emma Jackson – A story about an adopted puppy. (Harper Collins, 2008) Mr King’s Incredible Journey by David du Plessis – An introduction to a range of creatures from South Africa’s coast. (Random House Struik, 2011) Early graders Dear Greenpeace by Simon James – Emily writes to Greenpeace for advice on how to care for a whale in her pond. (Walker Books, 2008) My First Book of Southern African Mammals by Peter Apps – An introduction to a cross-section of mammals. (Random House Struik, 2000) Preteens and teens The Underneath by Kathi Appelt – A calico cat, about to have kittens, befriends a hound. (Simon and Schuster, 2008) White Dolphin by Gill Lewis – Kara and Felix have to work together to save a dolphin calf, and the reef in the bay of their home town. (Oxford University Press, 2012)
My son was terrified the first time we went to see dolphins. He thought they might jump out of the water and land on him. When he realised what they were he was enthralled, as are thousands of other children who pass through the education programme at Durban’s Seaworld, which teaches children about marine life and conservation. At the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa, children can see reptiles, birds and mammals, and become a junior nature conservator. They can also see animals in environments that simulate their natural habitats, a move encouraged by the environment enrichment programme followed at this facility. Visiting zoos and aquariums gives children the chance to meet animals up close, says Angeliné Schwan, communications officer at the National Zoological Gardens. Many zoos and aquariums treat animals with care and run conservation, rescue and rehabilitation programmes. But these types of facilities can come under criticism for keeping animals in captivity, or mistreating them. As parents, it’s important to be aware of these issues and to consider and question what’s in the animals’ best interests. Schwan recommends that before visiting a facility, check that they are a member of PAAZAB (African Association of Zoos and Aquaria; visit zoosafrica.com), which requires members to comply with certain standards. “Word of mouth is a good way to find out about the best places to visit,” says Schwan. At game reserves, animals are given free rein. No matter how you choose to introduce your children to animals, they will benefit from the interaction. When my son was born, and the dogs still didn’t know what he was, we looked forward to the day they would be friends. I think they are all on their way to being lifelong buddies, especially if they keep eating his vegetables for him.
campers Sleep under the stars at a great family-friendly camping spot not too far from Joburg.
By SIMONE JEFFERY
amping is a great pastime for young and old, outdoor enthusiasts and even those who love their creature comforts. If it’s your first time venturing out with your children, the key to a stress-free trip is to be prepared for everything and not to shy away from getting your children involved. Get them to help pack the car, choose the toys they want to take with them and set up the camp site. Consider providing your children with a torch or glowstick for the night jaunts, and create a few rules to ensure no one gets lost or injured during the trip. Take slops for use in the communal bathrooms and a door mat to place at the entrance of your tent to keep most of the grass and dirt outside. Also take insect-repellent sprays and wristbands to help ensure a peaceful night’s sleep.
nokeng eco lodge Nokeng Eco Lodge offers self-catering cottages (catering optional) and caravan and camp sites. There are 10 shaded camp sites near the ablution block with electrical points (bring a long extension cord) and your own braai facilities. The private bush camp on the embankments of the Elands River offers a further four, secluded, ecocamp sites with no electricity. The communal ablutions are basic, with hot water in the morning and evening. Children will get to see how they use a “donkey” to get hot water in the ablution block. There is a large swimming pool with thatched lapas to sit under, and a reading corner and sun deck with toys for the children. Next to the swimming pool is a boma with braai facilities. The restaurant serves healthy, simple meals. If you have specific dietary requirements and plan on visiting the restaurant, let them know before your arrival. You will also need to take your own liquor. activities The lodge offers a wide variety of activities, from mountain biking and hiking to fishing, horse riding and baking bread in an anthill. An obstacle course, jungle gym and river picnics are also offered. nearby attractions Go on game drives in the Dinokeng Game Reserve, take a sunset cruise on Rust de Winter Dam, or pay a visit to Mystic Monkeys and the Tswaing crater. friendly factors Pets are welcome open to the public All year round best time to visit The winter months, May to July, are lovely and mild. Note that they don’t water the grass at the lodge, relying solely on rainfall. If you’re looking for a quiet time away, try calling ahead to make sure they aren’t hosting any large groups for teambuilding during your stay. directions Farm Uitvlugt, 6 Uitvlugt Rd, Rust de Winter/Hammanskraal Rd, Dinokeng; approximately 123km from the Joburg CBD contact Elsje 082 887 3505, email@example.com or visit nokenglodge.co.za
olifants river lodge Situated in the beautiful Olifants River gorge, a valley filled with a variety of indigenous flora and fauna, Olifants River Lodge offers self-catering cabanas and villas, as well as a caravan park and camping sites with views of the river. There are 45 camp sites that are not graded or marked, but all have access to power points. Campers can make use of the four communal ablution blocks with dishwashing facilities. Two of the ablution blocks offer separate, lockable rooms, each with a shower, toilet and basin. activities Lounge on the pool deck and take a plunge in the cold swimming pool or indoor heated pool (both with baby splash pool). Partake in cycad hikes and mountain bike trails (bikes for adults and older children are for hire or you can bring your own), horse riding, mini quad biking for children, outdoor chess, pedal boating and canoeing, bird watching and fishing (bring your own rod). There is also a jungle gym. The bushveld bar is equipped with pool tables, table tennis, a lounge and a lapa. If you prefer not to use your skottelbraai, the licensed restaurant offers breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as a Sunday buffet. nearby attractions Conveniently located within a 200km radius of Joburg, Pretoria, Polokwane, Hazyview, Standerton, Nelspruit and the Kruger National Park. friendly factors They are not pet friendly, however, if needed, contact the manager at the lodge to make arrangements. They are wheelchair friendly. open to the public They are open from Monday to Sunday throughout the year. Day visitors are not allowed, however Sunday lunch guests are welcome. best time to visit Due to the indoor heated pool, Olifants River Lodge is a great place to visit all year round. directions Situated between Middelburg and eMalahleni (Witbank), on the R555. There is a 12km gravel road from the Presidentsrus turn-off to the lodge; approximately 170km from the Joburg CBD. contact 013 243 9401/2, 082 892 3029, 072 151 6518, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit olifants-river-lodge.co.za
Olifants River Lodge
Bush Willow Tented Camp
bush willow tented camp This small secluded tented camp in Muldersdrift is surrounded by indigenous bush and lies at the foot of the Zwartkops Mountain range. The camp offers 10 walk-in tents that sleep four to six people each. The tents each have a kitchenette, hot water and indoor showers, and make use of a thatched boma for meals. Linen is provided on request. The camp is great for group gatherings such as family reunions and birthday celebrations. activities Guests can enjoy the heated swimming pool, fishing in the Blaauwbank River, and hiking trails. They can also venture across to Glenburn Lodge to play putt-putt, use the tennis courts, volleyball court, restaurant, bar and spa. nearby attractions Maropeng, Rhino and Lion Reserve, Sterkfontein Caves and fly-fishing at Kloofzicht Lodge friendly factors They are not pet friendly or wheelchair friendly. open to the public All year round best time to visit From September to April directions R374, off the N14 Rd, Muldersdrift, approximately 40km from the Joburg CBD contact Central Reservations: 0861 148 866, email@example.com (8am–4:30pm Monday– Friday); or Bush Willow Tented Camp direct: 011 668 1600, firstname.lastname@example.org (Saturday and Sunday) or visit bushwillowtentedcamp.co.za
malonjeni guest farm This is a private farm in Meyerton that offers self-catering accommodation and two large camp sites. The main camp has 180 stands with power points, communal ablutions, two family bathrooms, a swimming pool and a splash pool. The bush camp is set within walking distance of the main camp, against a hill and with views of the valley. There are 80 stands with power points, two ablution blocks, a natural pool and a lapa. Twelve twosleeper safari tents with bunker beds are also available. They supply the linen. activities Take your mountain bikes and spend the day on the trails or BMX track. There is an obstacle course, playground, table tennis, pool tables, a bar with a big-screen TV and a small tuckshop. Children can enjoy the farmyard where they can feed the pigs, sheep, goats, turkeys, donkeys, horses and bunnies. The farm is also home to various zebra and antelope, which can be viewed while on a tractor and trailer game drive, or on a bush walk. nearby attractions Visit Stonehaven on Vaal for a boat cruise (30 minutes). Riviera on Vaal Country Club offers golf and Emerald Resort and Casino has loads of family entertainment. friendly factors They are pet friendly (small pets only) and wheelchair friendly. open to the public All year round best time to visit From August to April directions Off the R42, Brockett St, Meyerton; approximately 65km from the Joburg CBD contact 016 424 5932, 082 309 8075, email@example.com or visit malonjeni.co.za
camping at the jhb zoo You need to bring all the necessary equipment, and food and drinks. The zoo takes you on a guided behind-the-scenes and night tour, and provides you with a bonfire. open to the public Tours take place on set dates throughout the year, generally twice a month, for children seven years and older. directions Jan Smuts Ave, Parkview contact 011 646 2000 or visit jhbzoo.org.za
de voetpadkloof resort This is a mountain retreat with self-catering chalets and log cabins, 46 caravan and camping sites with power points, a paved area for tents, braai facilities and three clean ablution blocks with dishwashing and laundry facilities. They also offer safari tents with their own en-suite bathrooms, a partially equipped kitchen and braai facilities. activities Go on hikes, fish, play in the heated or cool swimming pools, enjoy a game of putt-putt or climb the jungle gym. There is a licensed shop on-site that provides basic requirements, a tea garden and a lapa with a TV, pool table and dartboard. nearby attractions 33 minutes from the Loskop Nature Reserve, Dam and Loskop Reptile Park; 13 minutes from the Kranspoort Golf Reserve; 13 minutes to Mbidi Resort and Animal Sanctuary friendly factors They don’t allow pets open to the public All year round; day visitors are welcome best time to visit Between October and March directions Off the N11, 40km north of Middleburg; approximately 196km from Joburg contact 013 245 8500 or visit devoetpadkloof.co.za
selous bush camp A tented safari camp offering 12 en-suite canvas tents, a main lodge area and an open-air boma where you can enjoy meals. The tents are equipped with beds, tea/coffee facilities, and linen and towels are provided. Each tent has its own bathroom with an open-air shower. There is no electricity in the camp, but you can arrange to have your devices (cameras, cellphones) charged at the gate. There is a small children’s pool at the camp. activities You can enjoy guided bush walks, game drives and mountain biking (you need to take your own) in the Mankwe Game Reserve, which is home to a large amount of game. nearby attractions Sun City; Pilanesberg National Park; quad biking, archery, clay-pigeon shooting and elephant-back safaris can be arranged off-site. You need to book your chosen activities in advance. friendly factors They are not pet friendly. open to the public Throughout the year best time to visit Try to avoid the height of summer as it can get very hot; best to visit between May and July. directions R510 Northam Rd, Mankwe Game Reserve, North West Province; near the Pilanesberg National Park, approximately 190km from the Joburg CBD contact 011 469 5013, 084 212 5050, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit selous.co.za
soetdoring holiday farm They have 60 paved camping sites, each with their own electricity, water points and braai facilities. The farm offers a jungle gym, outdoor chess, putt-putt course and trampolines, a large heated swimming pool, picnic spots, clean communal ablutions and washing-up facilities, and a 4x4 track. The bathroom, which is equipped for disabled people, also serves as a family bathroom. The small shop on the farm meets your basic needs. The site has a security fence and is patrolled. activities The farm is great for bird watching, hiking and mountain biking trails (bikes can be hired), and game drives. Children can feed and pet the hand-reared kudu and blesbuck. nearby attractions Emerald Resort and Casino; Vaal River; golf at Riviera Hotel and Country Club; river cruises at Stonehaven on Vaal friendly factors They are pet friendly (small pets) and wheelchair friendly. open to the public All year round; they don’t allow day visitors best time to visit Between February and March, after the peak season and rains directions 50 Taaibos Ave, Lenteland, Vereeniging; 57km from the Joburg CBD contact 016 556 6154 or visit soetdoringvakansieplaas.co.za *All camping sites mentioned are malaria free.
for different tastes These resorts have several camping spots in different parts of the country. • sanparks.co.za – Wild Card Membership gives you unlimited access to most of Southern Africa’s premier conservation areas. • foreversa.co.za – They have resorts in Gauteng, Limpopo, Free State, Mpumalanga and the Western Cape. • atkvresorts.co.za – All seven of their resorts have camping sites.
a good read for toddlers Alphaprints: ABC By Roger Priddy (Published by Priddy Books, R122) Rated as one of Amazon.com’s Best Children’s Books of 2013, this board book for babies and toddlers features an innovative, engaging way to teach them their ABCs. Each letter of the alphabet is formed using finger and thumbprints, turned into animals with the addition of photographs and simple illustrations. With imaginative, rhythmic text to read and listen to, and embossed pages for little fingers to touch and explore, children can learn A is for Ant, munching lunch as it goes; L is for Lion, with a roar like thunder; U is for Unicorn, full of magic and grace; and Z is for Zebra, the last but not the least; and more.
Chickens Can’t See in the Dark By Kristyna Litten
believe in yourself
(Published by Oxford University Press, R196) The pictures in this book will make children laugh, plus there is a message about standing up for your beliefs. Little Pippa is adamant that she wants to see in the dark. It all started when Mr Benedict told his class, “As sure as eggs is eggs, chickens can’t see in the dark.” When asking for their help, Mr Owl and Granny Bumblefoot find the prospect hilarious. But then Little Pippa reads a book at the Book Barn Library and learns that carrots improve your eyesight. She immediately sets off to the farm shop to buy all their stock. Is she going to be successful, or will she be the laughing stock of the village?
for preschoolers Sisi Goes to School and Other Stories By Wendy Hartmann and Joan Rankin (Published by Human & Rousseau, R150) Sisi, her family and friends are back in this delightful compilation of stories and rhyme that is filled with warmth, love and friendship. The five stories are: Sisi Goes to School, Sisi’s Special Sounds, Gogo’s Little Dog, Daddy’s Surprise and A Kiss For You. The book has beautiful illustrations by internationally known artist, Joan Rankin, which compliments the sparingly written, but spot on text. It is also available in Afrikaans as Sisi Gaan Skool Toe en Ander Stories.
close to home
The Mighty Elephant in the Land of Kachoo & The Leopard and the Bushbaby in the Land of Kachoo By Tina Scotford and Frans Groenewald (Published by Jacana Media, R81 each) This series of comical stories set in the fictional Land of Kachoo has rhyming verse and quirky illustrations for readers five to seven years old. In the first book, poor Elephant is in deep trouble. He cannot help knocking over trees with his big physique, and the other animals are sick and tired of their houses being toppled to the ground. Then a bush fire breaks out, and Elephant gets to be a hero. In the second book, the bushbaby saves his friends from becoming the leopard’s gourmet dinner.
for early graders Phapo’s Gift By Marita van Aswegen
Be Bright By Anita Potgieter (Published by Human & Rousseau, R89) This educational activity book is designed to help children sharpen their maths and language skills, while challenging them to be bright and creative. The fun maths exercises meet the standards of the Grade 1 to 3 curricula, while the language portion promotes language, reading and audio skills. The exercises will encourage young learners to practise the skills they acquire in their first school year in a new, fun way. Simple, clear instructions make the activities easy to complete, while a little star indicates to the learner where to complete their answer. In the back of the book the answers are clearly identified and explained. The author is a former teacher with many years’ experience teaching remedial classes to learners who have problems with maths and reading.
(Published by Knowledge Thirst Media, R70) Ten-year-old Phapo is clever, pretty and happy. But she has a big burden to carry: her father, who she loves very much, is dying from Aids. All around her, her school friends are getting boyfriends and girlfriends, but Phapo wants nothing more than to make mud-cakes under her favourite tree and dream of beautiful dolls. When the boys start looking at her, her grandma tells her a very special secret: Phapo has a precious, perfect fruit inside her. She alone has the power to treasure or to destroy that fruit. Phapo’s Gift is a truly South African story that teaches children about the effects of Aids and the advantages of abstinence. This highly relevant story of our time is full of colourful characters, brought to life with dozens of bright illustrations.
for preteens and teens A Horse called Hero By Sam Angus
love a good s tory
(Published by Pan Macmillan, R156) London, 1940: Dodo and her little brother Wolfie do not know what has happened to their father. A cavalry officer, war hero and veteran of the Somme, he has gone missing at Dunkirk. The children are evacuated to the West Country, away from everything they know. Alone in a high and wild land, they are taunted and bullied when their father is accused of cowardice and desertion. Wolfie finds an orphaned foal, names him Hero, and raises him. Together they roam the hills, finding freedom and happiness, little suspecting the dark shadow that hangs over them and the test that lies in store for both of them. But while the war took Wolfie’s hope, Hero gives him courage. This is a beautiful story from the author of Soldier Dog, for children from the age of 10.
Rock Steady By Joanne MacGregor (Published by Protea, R140) Samantha Steadman, and her best friends – smart-mouthed Jessie Delaney and a politician’s daughter Nomusa Gule – are back at boarding school, in Grade 9, and they are up against a whole new set of challenges. Their creepy, new science teacher – the Poison Dwarf – takes delight in tormenting Sam, and she’s started counting and checking everything in a way that has her friends worried about her sanity. Add to that Sam’s determination to uncover and stop the illegal trade in San rock art, a blossoming new romance (or two) and a dangerous survival competition in the mountains, which will endanger the trio’s lives. Sam will need all her wits and courage to stand steady. Together they will have to find the strength to cope.
Delicious Gifts: Edible Creations to Make and Give By Jess McCloskey (Published by Struik Lifestyle, R153) For birthdays, anniversaries and other celebrations, nothing beats a delicious, edible handmade gift. As more and more people rediscover the traditional skills of cooking, there is a renewed interest in giving personal gifts. Edible handmade gifts are accessible to even the most novice of cooks, and family and friends appreciate the effort put into making something special. Focusing on rich, complex flavours, but simple techniques, this book allows everyone to find the perfect gift to make or bake with confidence. The entire process is covered – from buying materials and ingredients, to instructions and creating an elegant package. Including new ideas for more advanced cooks, this book is your ideal guide to making delectable gifts.
What Lies Within By Tom Vowler
a new voice
(Published by Headline Publishers, R161) This is a tightly spun, atmospheric and powerfully psychological suspense thriller from a brilliant new voice in fiction. Living in a remote Devon farmhouse, Anna and her family have always been close to nature, surrounded by the haunting beauty of the moor. But when a convict escapes from a nearby Dartmoor prison, their isolation suddenly begins to feel more claustrophobic than free. Fearing for her children’s safety, Anna’s behaviour becomes increasingly irrational. Meanwhile, a young, idealistic teacher has just started her first job, but gets brutally attacked by one of her students. As the two narratives converge, the tension builds to a devastating denouement, shattering everything you thought you knew about nature, nurture and the true meaning of family.
Is that My Child? The Brain Food Plan By Dr Robin Pauc with Carina Norris
Our Incredible Journey: Pregnancy and Baby Journal By Cathy Heaton (Published by Random House Struik, R162) Cathy Heaton is a renowned South African photographer and make-up artist. She has created an album that is, in essence, a story that a mother (or father) can record for a child, and which the child will be able to understand and enjoy once they are old enough. It is also a parent’s precious keepsake of the mother and child’s journey from before birth (actually from the fifth week of pregnancy) to the child’s fifth year. The charming format, which is interspersed with stunning photographs and appropriate quotations and verses, makes it simple to record milestones, special events, thoughts and general background. There is ample space to paste multiple photographs or other keepsakes and mementos.
practic al advice
(Published by Random House, R215) Dr Pauc demonstrates how nutrition and exercise can help children overcome many conditions – from dyslexia and dyspraxia to ADHD and Tourette’s Syndrome. The book includes easy-to-follow advice and information, from the effects nutrition can have on children’s behaviour to how different types of exercise can benefit children in different ways. Pauc is a specialist in child neurology. Carina Norris is a registered nutritionist, author, journalist and consultant.
what’s on in march
You can also access the calendar online at
Your guide for what to do, where to go and who to see this month. Compiled by SIMONE JEFFERY
FUN FOR CHILDREN – p32
ONLY FOR PARENTS – p34
Little Kickers Attend the open day at their new branch in Edenvale.
Tissue salts for healthy living A talk about stress, diet, and recipes and foods that contain tissue salts.
bump, baby & tot in tow – p35
how to help – p35
Play days at The Yard Relax and enjoy a cup of coffee as your children run and play in the shaded garden.
Donate books at a library Support parents, caregivers and children in disadvantaged communities.
SPECIAL EVENTS – p30 IMPI Challenge Tackle this adventurous obstacle course suitable for all ages and fitness levels.
SPECIAL EVENTS 1 saturday Gardens of the Golden City Three gardens are on show this month. 1 and 2 March Bryanston, 8 and 9 March Roodepoort. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: tba. Cost: R20. Contact Bryanston: 082 593 4520, Roodepoort: 082 689 0930 or visit gardensofthegoldencity.co.za Gone batty There is a presentation and a walk around the reserve with the West Rand Bat Interest Group. Booking recommended. Time: 6pm–8pm. Venue: Kloofendal Nature Reserve, cnr Galena Ave and Veronica St, Kloofendal, Roodepoort. Cost: adults R70, pensioners R60, children R40. Contact: 079 693 5608 or visit kloofendalfriends.org.za Little Eden’s annual fête Dress up as a Neverland character and enjoy food and family fun. Proceeds assist them in caring for 300 children and adults with intellectual disability. Donations for stalls welcome. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Domitilla and Danny Hyams Home, cnr Harris Ave and Wagenaar Rd, Edenvale. Cost: R5. Contact: 011 609 7246 or visit littleeden.org.za Open day at Marist Brothers Linmeyer (Marian College) View the facilities and meet the teachers. For parents of children from Grade 0–12. Time: 9am–12pm. Venue: Marist Brothers Linmeyer, East St, Linmeyer. Cost: free. Contact: 011 435 0646 or visit mariancollege.co.za
Shave or Spray The 11th Cansa Shavathon
invites people to shave or spray their hair in solidarity with cancer survivors. Also 2 March. Time and venue: varies. Cost: adults R50, children under 12 R25. Contact: 0800 226 622 or visit shavathon.org.za
Open morning at Out of the Box Let your children play in the playground while you walk around the centre. Time: 10am–1pm. Venue: Out of the Box, The Pavilion, cnr Power St and Refinery Rd, Germiston. Cost: free. Contact: 083 583 5383 or visit outofthebox.org.za Pelinduna Trail Festival Choose from 5km, 10km, 21km or 70km. The 5km run is for children 6 years and older. There is live music and an expo and picnic area. Time: 6am–5pm. Venue: Pelinduna Adventures, Pelindaba. Cost: R70–R650. Contact: email@example.com or visit wildtrail.co.za Stop Hunger Now Help pack sustainable meals and a fortification pack of essential minerals and vitamins for the underprivileged. Time: 9am. Venue: 11A Knightsgate, Jonas Rd, Driehoek, Germiston. Cost: free. Contact: 011 872 2498 or visit stophungernowsa.org
2 sunday HospiceWits fun walk Take your dog and enjoy a 4km or 8km walk in aid of the hospice. Time: 8am. Venue: Zoo Lake, cnr Jan Smuts Ave and Westwold Way, Saxonwold. Cost: 4km R50, 8km R80. Contact: 011 844 0419 or visit entrytime.com Side by Side Laurie Levine and Josie Field perform. Time: 3pm–5:30pm. Venue: Gingko Restaurant, 61 Dundalk Ave, Parkview. Cost: R125. Contact: 011 486 3361 or visit gingko.co.za
5 wednesday Craighall Primary open day A co-ed school that caters for children from Grade 1–7. Time: 9am–12pm. Venue: cnr Rothesay Rd and Grosvenor Ave, Craighall Park. Cost: free. Contact: 011 788 7223/4 or visit craighallprimary.co.za
6 thursday Open day at Saraswati Principle Kindergarten and School Parents can take this opportunity to find out more about the school. Time: 2pm–5pm. Venue: 31 Elstree Ave, Glenvista. Cost: free. Contact: 011 432 8854 or visit tspschools.co.za
7 March – Hobby-X
7 friday Hobby-X A showcase of creative craft supplies, materials, equipment and projects. You can also attend a workshop. Ends 9 March. Time: 10am–6pm Friday, 9am–6pm Saturday, 9am–5pm Sunday. Venue: CocaCola Dome, North Riding. Cost: adults R50, children under 12 R20. Contact: 011 478 3686 or visit hobby-x.co.za Barefoot for a Day The Little Fighters Cancer Trust encourages you to go barefoot for a day as a reminder of the journey a child with cancer takes. Donations of new children’s shoes for children with cancer, are welcome. For more info, contact: 073 729 6155 or visit littlefighters.org.za Open day at Bryanston Preprimary For parents of children 2–5 years old. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: 200 Bryanston Dr, Bryanston. Cost: free. Contact: 011 463 4763 or visit bryanstonpreprimary.co.za
13 thursday Dainfern College open day An opportunity to see the school in action. They cater for children from Grade 0–12. Time: 9am–10am. Venue: Broadacres Dr, Dainfern. Cost: free. Contact: 011 469 0635 or visit dainferncollege.co.za
15 saturday IMPI Challenge Tackle a combination of trail running and adventure-style obstacle
course for elite sportspersons, competent and beginner runners, and families looking for a fun experience. Participants are encouraged to dress up. For children 6 years and older. Also 16 March. Time: 8am–5pm. Venue: Van Gaalen Cheese Farm, Hartebeespoort. Cost: R120– R550. For more info and to register: visit impichallenge.co.za Sacred Heart College open day This Catholic school caters for boys and girls from 2–18 years old. Time: 9am–12pm. Venue: 15 Eckstein St, Observatory. Cost: free. Contact: 011 487 9000, 011 648 1858 or visit sacredheart.co.za St Benedict’s open day Learn about this Catholic school that caters for boys from Grade R–12. Time: 9am–12pm. Venue: Harcus Rd, Bedfordview. Cost: free. Contact: 011 455 1906 or visit stbenedicts.co.za
Me-Nuts Like2Bike cycling series
Children can complete a 1km run followed by a 5km cycle, or a 2km run and 10km cycle, or the cycle only for 2km, 5km or 10km. For children 2–14 years old. Time: 8:30am. Venue: Waterfall Village Estate, Kyalami. Cost: pre-entry R110; late entry R120. Contact: 083 326 6721 or visit like2bike.co.za
16 sunday Rock the Run A musical 10km and 21,1km run that winds its way through Sandton, with three music stages along the route. There are food stalls, hot-air balloon rides and a children’s corner. For runners 18 years and older. Time: 7:30am. Venue: Mushroom Farm Park, cnr Daisy Ave and Linden St, Sandton. Cost: runners 21,1km R250, 10km R220; spectators R100; children under 13 free if accompanied by a paying adult. For more info: visit rocktherun.co.za
while children are kept busy with live entertainment. Ends 30 March. Time: 9:30am–5pm. Venue: Sandton Convention Centre, 161 Maude St, Sandton. Cost: adults R60, children R20, children under 6 free. For more info: visit babaindaba.co.za Jozi Night Rider This MTB and trail run event offers five distances: 3km children’s MTB ride, 10km and 20km MTB ride, and a 5km and 10km trail run. Food is on sale and there are bonfires and entertainment. Time: 6pm. Venue: Heia Safari Ranch, 1747 Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: MTB 3km children’s race R50, 10km R80, 20km R120; trail run 5km R50, 10km R100. Contact: 012 751 4130 or visit asgevents.co.za
21 friday Despicable Me fun Play and have your photo taken with the characters of the movie. Time: 12pm–2pm. Venue: Smudge, Kingfisher Shopping Centre, Fourways. Cost: R130 for the first hour, R60 thereafter. Contact: 082 322 8916 or visit smudgeart.co.za
28 friday Baba Indaba Pregnant moms-to-be and new moms can find all they need,
Dewey’s League – Reading for Justice Bring your child into a store and a South Africa’s sporting heroe, TV and movie icon, media personalities, celebrity mom or local author will read them a story from their selection of children’s books. Time: 10am–10:30am. Venue: any Exclusive Books store. Cost: free; bring along stationery to donate to a local charity. Contact: 011 798 0000 or visit exclus1ves.co.za Earth Hour Form a group and switch off your lights and spend 60 minutes in darkness to celebrate this year’s Earth Hour. The Joburg Zoo is holding a campout and runs a guided night tour. Booking essential. Time: Earth Hour 8:30pm–9:30pm, zoo
campout 5:30pm–8am. Venue (campout): Joburg Zoo, Jan Smuts Ave, Parkview. Contact: 011 646 2000 ext. 216 or visit earthhour.org Miniature Showcase Artists showcase their work in the miniature world. Accessories and supplies are available to buy. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Parkhurst Recreation Centre, cnr 13th St and 5th Ave, Rosebank. Cost: free, but donations towards cerebral palsy welcome. Contact: 011 787 2340 or firstname.lastname@example.org Search scorpions at night Time: 6pm. Venue: Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens, Malcolm Rd, Roodepoort. Cost: nonmembers R60, children under 2 free. Contact: email@example.com or visit sanbi.org
30 sunday Benoni Art Route Twenty artists formed an art route that meanders past Benoni’s lakes. Other entertainment also available. Download the route from their website. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: varies. Cost: free. Contact: 084 581 6340 or visit benoniartroute.co.za Guide-Dogs Fun Festival Join the South African Guide-Dogs Association for a festival with a beer garden, food stalls, an Amazing Race family challenge, dog demonstrations and more. Time: 10am–3pm. Venue: Gladys Evans Training Centre, 126 Wroxham Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R10. Contact: 011 705 3512 or visit guidedog.org.za
FUN FOR CHILDREN art, culture and science Lifelines exhibition If objects could speak, what stories would they tell? This exhibition encourages you to consider the journeys of objects. 29 January–13 September. Time: 8am–4:30pm Monday–Friday; 9am–1pm Saturday. Venue: Standard Bank Gallery, cnr Simmonds Rd and Frederick St, Joburg CBD. Cost: free. Contact: 011 631 4467 or visit standardbankarts.co.za South African Airways Museum Guided tours need to be booked. Time: 9:30am–2pm, Saturday, Sunday and public holidays. Venue: Old Transvaal Aviation Club building, Dakota Crescent, Rand Airport, Germiston. Cost: adults R25, children R15. Contact: 083 442 3771 or visit saamuseum.co.za
Meditation class They also listen to a story and play a game. For children 3–13 years old. 9 March. Time: 9:30am–10:45am. Venue: Vajrapani Kadampa Buddhist Centre, The Colony Shopping Centre, 345 Jan Smuts Ave, Craighall. Cost: R15. Contact: 011 447 2746 or visit meditation.org.za
family outings Douglasdale Dairy Tours Children learn about milk products and milk processing. Booking essential. For children 4 years and older. Time: 9am–12pm, Monday–Friday. Venue: Douglasdale Dairy, Waterloo Rd, Bryanston. Cost: free. Contact: dairytours@ douglasdale.co.za or visit douglasdale.co.za Learning Point High School Expo Have your questions about your child’s education answered by the high schools (government and independent). 28 February–2 March. Time: 9am–6pm Friday and Saturday, 9am–3pm Sunday. Venue: Nicolway Bryanston, cnr William Nicol Dr and Wedgewood Link, Bryanston. Cost: free. Contact: 011 760 5244 or visit thelearningpoint.co.za
finding nature and outdoor play
South African Airways Museum
classes, talks and workshops Active Readers Children can explore prereading skills in a weekly class. For children 3–6 years old. Time: varies. Venue: Craighall Park. Cost R1 200 per term. Contact: 082 566 1368 or visit active-readers.com Children’s craft workshop They make a bird feeder and enjoy a tractor ride. Booking essential. 29 March. Time: 10am. Venue: Garden World, Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: R40 per child (includes the kit and tractor ride). Contact: 011 956 3003 or visit gardenworld.co.za Little cooks and chefs Children create a selection of healthy recipes and tasty desserts. Booking essential. For children 2–12 years old. Holiday camp at Little Cooks Club Randpark Ridge: 29 March–5 April; Morningside’s Junior Chefs Cooking Class: 15 March; Little Cooks Club Fourways: 3 February–5 April. Time: varies. Venues: Fourways, Randpark Ridge, Morningside. Cost: varies. Contact Fourways: 082 874 2851, Randpark Ridge: 083 228 0343, Morningside: 083 985 8080 or visit littlecooksclub.co.za Make a desk lamp Beginners learn how to use tools while making their own desk lamp. Must be accompanied by an adult. For children 7–12 years old. 22 March. Time: 10am–12pm. Venue: Tool Share Studio, unit 6, Ferndale Commercial Park, cnr Hylauma St and Struik St, Randburg. Cost: R350, includes all materials. Contact: 011 791 7790 or visit toolshare.co.za
Lory Park Zoo This is a sanctuary for a large variety of wildlife. Time: 10am–4:30pm, daily. Venue: 80/1 Kruger Rd, President Park, Midrand. Cost: adults R70, pensioners R40, children R50. Contact: 011 315 7307 or visit lorypark.co.za Shepherd’s Fold Stables pony camp Spend three days learning how to ride and care for your pony. Booking essential. For children 6–16 years old. 3–5 March. Time: 8am–5pm. Venue: Shepherd’s Fold Stables, 55 Sunset Dr, Elandsdrift, Lanseria. Cost: R300 per day, R50 extra per night to sleep over. Contact: 084 220 2657 or visit shepherdsfoldstables.co.za
3–5 March – Shepherd’s Fold Stables pony camp
Survival camp, level 2 Advanced survival techniques for those who have completed level 1. Booking essential. For children 6–14 years old. 21–23 March. Time: 4pm Friday–3pm Saturday. Venue: Kareekloof Farm, Lanseria. Cost: R850 (including food). Contact: 076 429 6739 or visit key2comms.wix.com/cashane-rangers
holiday programmes Holiday fly-fishing clinic In a safe, ecofriendly environment. Booking essential. 15 March–15 May. Time: 9am–11:30am. Venues: Kloofzicht Lodge: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday; Magalies Barbus Haven: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Cost: from R50–R350. Contact: 011 315 4503 or visit sundowneradventures.co.za magazine joburg
The Market Browse for upmarket art, crafts and food. There is entertainment for children. 2 March. Time: 10am–3pm. Venue: Just Darling, 68 Barn Rd, Walkerville. Cost: free entry. Contact: 084 228 8800 or visit facebook.com/themarketfab
on stage and screen
Holiday cricket coaching clinic The Cricket School of Excellence is hosting a clinic for children 4–14 years old. 31 March–3 April. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: University of Johannesburg, ABSA Cricket Oval, Melville. Cost: R600. Contact: 0861 123 273, william@cricketschool. co.za or visit cricketschool.co.za
Joburg Zoo holiday programme Children help with the cleaning and enrichment of the zoo animals. Booking essential. For children 7–13 years old. 31 March–4 April. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Joburg Zoo, Jan Smuts Ave, Parkview. Cost: R75. Contact: 011 646 2000 ext. 216 or visit jhbzoo.org.za
markets Bezoo March Market An open day to view and buy items for your home. Refreshments are on sale. 21 March. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: Bezoo Workshop, 16 Douglas Rd, Glen Austin, Midrand. Cost: free entry. Contact: 082 498 3363 or visit bezooprojects.com Books2You Book Fair There are hundreds of books on sale. 10 and 11 March. Time: 10am–3pm Monday; 7:30am–1pm Tuesday. Venue: Grayston Preparatory, cnr North Rd and Gillard St, Sandton. Cost: free entry. Contact: 031 705 7744 or firstname.lastname@example.org Russell Street Ramble Urban Market This is a monthly market that offers fresh herbs and vegetables, beaded jewellery and more. There is entertainment for the children and live music. 30 March. Time: 9am–4pm. Venue: 36 Russell St, Western Extension, Benoni. Cost: free. Contact: 082 896 5013 or email@example.com
Bedtime Stories premieres Skeeter, a handyman at a motel, is given the responsibility of babysitting two estranged children. He makes up bedtime stories to help them get to sleep and the plots of the stories start coming true. 14 March. Time: 5pm, on the Disney Channel, channel 303 on DStv. For more info: visit dstv.com Disney’s Alice in Wonderland 15 March– 20 April. Time: varies. Venue: Peoples Theatre, cnr Loveday St and Hoofd St, Joburg Theatre Complex, Braamfontein. Cost: Kid’s Club members R70, accompanying member R90, nonmembers R105. Contact: 011 403 1563 or visit peoplestheatre.co.za The Astounding Antics of Anthony Ant Join Anthony on his quest to save the ant colony from a mysterious poison. Booking essential. 17 March–4 May. Time: varies. Venue: National Children’s Theatre, 3 Junction Ave, Parktown. Cost: chairs R110, cushions R90. Contact: 011 484 1584/5 or visit nationalchildrenstheatre.org.za The Lego Movie A 3D movie set in a world made up of Lego blocks. The story focuses on Emmet, an ordinary Lego figure who joins Lego Batman and Lego Superman to save the world. 14 March. For more info: visit sterkinekor.com or numetro.co.za
playtime and story time Family Fun Zone Enjoy slides, volleyball, beach soccer, quad bikes, a dirt track, and a lounge area with a TV and free Wi-Fi. Time: 9am–5pm daily. Venue: 1 Allandale Rd, inside the Kyalami racetrack, Kyalami. Cost: adults free; children 1–12 years old R50 for one hour, R75 for two hours, R100 for three hours; children under one year free. Contact: 011 047 0129 or visit familyfunzone.co.za Kid’s Traffic-land Children drive batteryoperated vehicles in a mini-city. For children from 3 years old to a maximum of 35kg. Time: varies. Venue: shop 174, Balfour Park Shopping Centre, Balfour Park. Cost: R30–R90. Contact: 073 329 8510 or visit kidztrafficland.co.za Story time at Parkview Library A reading suitable for preschool and primary school children. Time: 3:30pm–4:30pm every Monday, children under 3 years old 10am. Venue: 51 Athlone Ave, Parkview. Cost: free. Contact: 011 646 3375
14 March – The Lego Movie
sport and physical activities Bollywood dance classes Indian dance combined with hip-hop, jazz, contemporary and Latin dance. For children 4–14 years old. Time: 10am–11am every Saturday. Venue: Dance Café, Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R260 per month. Contact: 011 465 5113 or visit dancecafe.wozaonline.co.za Little Kickers Interactive soccer classes for girls and boys 18 months–7 years old. The new Edenvale branch has an open day on 29 March. Time: Edenvale: 9am–11am, 29 March; Benoni: 8am–12pm every Saturday. Venues: Edenvale Action Soccer Arena, 4 Bhacas Rd, Edenvale; Old Bens Indoor Centre, President Boshoff St, Benoni. Cost: tbc. Contact Benoni: 072 483 9972 or Edenvale: 083 450 0563 or visit littlekickers.co.za Vertical adventures They offer 100m bungee, a power swing, SCAD freefall, climbing, abseiling and paintball. There is a weight limit of 35kg–115kg. Time: 11am until sunset Thursday; 10am until late Friday– Sunday. Venue: Orlando Towers. Cost: varies. For more info: visit orlandotowers.co.za
only for parents classes, talks and workshops Adult ballet for beginners Time: 7pm–8pm every Tuesday, 11am–12:30pm every Saturday. Venue: Dance Café, Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R70 per class. For more info: visit dancecafe.wozaonline.co.za
A Load of Bull Sketches, songs and the occasional limerick explains the intricacies of rugby. 12 March–20 April. Time: 8:15pm Tuesday–Saturday, 5:15pm Saturday, 3:15pm Sunday. Venue: Studio Theatre at Montecasino, Fourways. Cost: R150. Book through Computicket: visit computicket.com
A vision for a joyful life Increase your happiness the Buddhist way. 6 March. Time: 7am–8:30am. Venue: Hackle Brooke Conference Centre, Craighall Park. Cost: R100, including tea and coffee. Contact: 011 447 2746 or visit meditateinsa.org Can your child be a star? A talk for parents who want to get their children into the film and television industry. 15 March. Time: 10am–11am. Venue: Da Vinci Hotel, Sandton. Cost: free. Contact: 082 559 6702 or visit caitlinscasting.co.za Demystifying misbehaviour Parents learn to understand and cope with misbehaviour in children. Booking essential. 29 March. Time: 9am–12pm. Venue: 5 6th Ave, Edenvale. Cost: R250. Contact: 082 547 9224 or visit transformationalcoaching.co.za
Dinner party entertaining Your domestic worker learns to entertain small dinner parties. 20 March. Time: 8:30am–1pm, over three weekly sessions. Venue: Domestic Bliss, 235 Jan Smuts Ave, Parktown North. Cost: R1 600. Contact: 011 447 5517 or visit domesticbliss.co.za Evening talk with Dr Claire Saunders Homeopathic remedies for anxiety and attention difficulties. 12 March. Time: 7pm–8pm. Venue: Bellavista School, 35 Wingfield Ave, Birdhaven. Cost: R80. Contact: 011 788 5454 or visit bellavistaschool.co.za Family and friends CPR course Booking essential. 1 and 29 March. Time: 9am–1pm. Venue: Ferndale, Randburg. Cost: tbc. Contact: 082 374 2801 or visit med-x.co.za
First aid level one For 16 years and older. 15 March. Time: 8am–4pm. Venue: OHS Training Centre, 811 Lisbon Ave, Little Falls, Roodepoort. Cost: R250. Contact: 011 026 8451 or visit ohsacademy.co.za Hands-on biscuit workshop Learn how to bake and cover themed children’s biscuits. Booking essential. 7, 8 and 28 March. Time: 9am–12:30pm. Venue: Tinybite, Dennis Rd, Athol, Sandton. Cost: R350 (ingredients and recipes provided). Contact: 082 927 9763 or visit tinybite.co.za Namaste Yoga Classes for teens and adults of all levels. Time: 6pm–7:30pm every Monday and Thursday. Venue: NG Kerk Randburg, cnr Vine St and Dover St, Ferndale. Cost: drop-in R80, once a week R280 per month, twice a week R430 per month. Contact: 083 564 9446 or visit namasteyogastudio.co.za Parenting from a different perspective Learn how to communicate effectively and understand what drives your child’s behaviour. For parents of children 7–12 years old. 5 March. Time: 6pm–9pm, over four Wednesdays. Venue: Good Vibrations Health Sanctuary, cnr 9A 11th Ave and Homestead Rd, Rivonia. Cost: R2 900. Contact: 083 267 4624 or firstname.lastname@example.org Tissue salts for healthy living A discussion on stress and the foods that contain tissue salts. Booking essential. 15 March. Time: 9:30am. Venue: Garden World, Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: R80. Contact: 011 957 2545
on stage and screen
An Audience with Pieter-Dirk Eish Audience members choose a box with characters that could lead to drama, comedy, a farce or an exposé. 28 and 29 March. Time: 8:30pm. Venue: The Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City. Cost: R120– R305. Book through Computicket: or visit computicket.com Joburg Ballet presents Coppélia 7–23 March. Time: 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, 3pm Saturday and Sunday; also 11am on 9, 11 and 18 March. Venue: The Mandela at the Joburg Theatre complex, Braamfontein. Cost: R200–R400. To book: 0861 670 670 or visit joburgtheatre.com Madame Zingara’s After Forever Tour 13 February–30 April. Time: 6pm. Venue: Montecasino Outdoor Event Arena, Fourways. Cost: R410–R496. Contact: 0861 623 263 or visit madamezingara.com
Cerebral palsy support Contact: 041 583 2130, email@example.com or visit cerebralpalsy.org.za Overeaters Anonymous (OA) People share a solution to compulsive overeating. Contact: 011 640 2901 or visit oa.org.za Sadag The South African Depression and Anxiety Group’s hotline: 0800 567 567
out and about
Educate a Child You can provide a child who has barriers to learning with access to affordable education through the Sparrow Schools programme, from R100 per month or R1 200 per year. Contact Mary: 011 482 1015 or visit sparrowschool.co.za
Genesis Clinic open day Find out about the natural birthing services the clinic offers and meet the private midwives. No need to book. 1 March. Venue: 5 Northwold Dr, Saxonwold. Cost: free. Contact: 011 646 3923 or visit genesisclinic.co.za How to raise a multilingual child For parents of children 0–6 years old. 22 March. Time: 9am–10:30am. Venue: LinguaMites Preschool, cnr Witkoppen Rd and Douglas Rd, Fourways. Cost: free. Contact: 072 561 3113 or visit linguamites.co.za
bump, baby & Tot in tow
Play days at The Yard Parents enjoy a cuppa while children run and play in the partly shaded garden. For children 1–5 years old. Time: 2pm–5pm Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Venue: 11 Meadows End, Woodmead. Cost: R30 per child over 1 year old (includes tea, coffee or hot chocolate). Contact: 071 362 6796
support groups Cleft Friends Contact: 0861 276 453 or visit cleftfriends.co.za
classes, talks and workshops Montessori mommy and me classes For parents of babies 12–36 months old. Time: 9am–10:15am every Friday. Venue: Global Child Montessori Preprimary School, 3 Penelope Ave, Linden. Cost: R1 200 per month (includes snacks). Contact: 082 409 5229 or visit globalchild.co.za PramFit This is a walking group for momsto-be and new mommies. Time: 9am every Monday. Venue: 48 Asgaai Ave, Randpark Ridge. Cost: R120 per month. Contact: 071 435 3260
playtime and story time Crazy Kidz Farmyard Children can ride ponies, use the scooter track and see farm animals. Call from the gate for access. Time: 9am–5pm daily. Venue: 9 Daniel St, Danielbrink Park, Randburg. Cost: children R25, adults free, picnics R10. Contact: 082 389 9153 or visit crazykidzfarmyard.co.za
how to help Little Fighters Cancer Trust Financial relief to families of cancer babies. For more info: visit littlefighters.org.za Donate books at your local library For children’s books for ages six and under. These are given to disadvantaged communities. Contact: 082 777 0752
don’t miss out! For a free listing, email your event to joburg@childmag. co.za or fax it to 011 234 4971. Information must be received by 28 February for the April issue, and must include all relevant details. No guarantee can be given that it will be published. To post an event online, visit childmag.co.za
itâ€™s party time For more help planning your childâ€™s party visit
branching out CASSANDRA SHAW recalls how travelling at a young age impacted her life and ultimately that of her son’s.
t’s amazing how much of an impact exposing your child to new and unusual things can have on them. Encouraging them to experience unfamiliar things or to visit different places can really ignite their curiosity and imagination. Taking them out of their everyday world creates the opportunity for you to open up their minds and to see what’s out there beyond their comfort zones. I remember when my parents took me to Hong Kong when I was five. My mom, being a chef, thought it important to expose me to different foods while we were there, and whenever we tried out a new restaurant, the waiters and waitresses would encourage me to eat something interesting like chicken’s
feet, tripe or snake soup – the latter I remember, to this day, not being overly keen on. It’s amazing though, that at such a young age, I was able to maintain so many memories from this trip. Sure, a lot of them were childlike, such as driving on a doubledecker bus, or visiting a massive toy store, but the overall experience really shaped my life. I instantly caught the travel bug; I have an appreciation for Chinese culture and I absolutely love dim sum. I see the same light appear in my son whenever we teach him something new, travel somewhere or take him someplace different. Like most children, he soaks up new experiences, whether it’s playing puttputt for the first time, travelling overseas
or spending time outdoors. He recently went on a camping trip with my husband and his family and when they got back he was talking a mile a minute about what he had done, seen and how much fun he’d had. He played outside with his cousins, explored the area and slept in a tent – the idea of which absolutely thrilled him. When it came time to sleep, he didn’t make a fuss and he didn’t try to put it off, he actually looked at my husband and said, “Dad, I’m tired, I think it’s time I went to sleep in the tent now, ok?” So, he did. He got up, went to the tent on his own and fell asleep. I can only imagine what was going through his mind at that moment: being in the dark, lying on the ground, and listening to the
sounds of the wild – all this just outside his temporary, A-frame, fabric home. But that’s the beauty of a family holiday; the experiences and memories that a child will have of them for the rest of their life. These things will shape them into who they want to be and inevitably play a part in what they teach or get their children to experience one day too. I don’t think I’ll get my son to try snake soup anytime soon, but I’ll certainly encourage him to travel or join me for some dim sum, whenever we get the chance. Having missed out on his first real camping trip, Cassandra’s keen on introducing her son to things she remembers about camping, like roasting marshmallows and eating s’mores.
PHOTOGRAPH: MENKE BONNEMA
Cassandra and her son
braaing at its best Master how to cook outdoors with JUSTIN BONELLO’s Roads Less Travelled: The Ultimate Braai Master Second Series.
By Bertus Basson Way back, when I first started filming my show Cooked, I made a dustbin pizza for my crew before we hit Splashy Fen music festival in the southern Drakensberg. That was my attempt at a braaied pizza. In a 45-gallon metal drum on top of two unglazed terracotta tiles, I had a makeshift pizza oven that baked delicious pizza in less than 15 minutes. This time round, Bertus (a pro at simple and delicious food) made pizza straight on the braai grid. I had my doubts, especially after all the effort I went to making a pizza oven using a dustbin, but admittedly have to swallow my words. So try this if you don’t have a dustbin lying around in your backyard. It’s way simpler. I love learning new tricks like this. Bertus uses the same basic bread dough recipe that I’ve used for years, so I guess in the world of outdoor pizza we’re even. Until next year…
By Andrew and Thando When you get to walk the Wild Coast foraging for food, one ingredient you’re bound to find are mussels. Can you imagine picking mussels and then preparing them right there on the beach while the sun is setting in the background? Life really doesn’t get any better than that. It’s simply perfect. Get out there and do it… but make sure you’ve got a permit before you do – available from the post office.
PHOTOGRAPHS: Louis Hiemstra & Dominique Little: Cooked in Africa Films
for the best pizza dough, you’ll need: • 500g white bread flour • a big pinch of salt • 10g yeast • 325ml warm water Combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Activate and dissolve the yeast by placing it in another bowl and adding the warm water. Give it a stir, and sprinkle a handful of flour over the mixture to prevent the yeast from forming a crust. Leave the yeast mixture in a warm spot for about 10 minutes or until it begins to froth and gradually add it to the flour, mixing it well until it forms a dough. The only way to do this is with your hands. If the dough is too sticky, add a bit more flour; if it’s too dry, add a splash more water, and so on. Knead for 10 minutes until the dough has a smooth, elastic consistency. Sprinkle some flour onto your work surface, place the dough on the flour and cover with a damp tea towel. Leave the dough to rise for about 30 minutes or until it has doubled in size. Sprinkle some flour on a clean working surface and tear off a fistsized piece of dough. Using your fingers or a rolling pin (or a bottle of wine) roll the dough out into your preferred size and shape – keeping in mind it can’t be bigger than your braai grid. The border can be slightly thicker if you like a thick crust pizza. Bertus didn’t do a tomato base, but used olive oil and sliced garlic instead. This is Bertus’s favourite topping, but the possibilities are endless, so go wild.
you’ll need: • olive oil, mixed with about 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced • mozzarella, sliced • red onion, thinly sliced • cherry tomatoes, halved • slices of Parma ham • fresh basil • rocket • Parmesan shavings • salt and cracked black pepper Take the pizza base and put it on a grid over moderate coals. Braai the base for a couple of minutes, or until the bottom is crispy and golden and the top starts bubbling. Flip the base over and brush the top with the garlicky olive oil. Take out a couple of the garlic slices and arrange them on top of the pizza. Next, scatter sliced mozzarella on the base – as much as you like. Reduce the heat of your coals slightly by scraping some to the side – the slow heat will give the mozzarella time to melt without burning the bottom of the pizza. Go ahead and drizzle some more garlicky olive oil onto the pizza, then once the cheese has melted, remove the pizza from the heat. Top with red onion, tomatoes, Parma ham, basil, rocket, Parmesan shavings and season with salt and black pepper. Cut into odd-sized slices and let your friends dig in (once you’ve had your slice). Then let them each make their own pizza.
you’ll need: • 1,5kg mussels, scrubbed clean, beards removed and soaked in salted water (or sea water) • a glug of olive oil • 1 onion, finely chopped • 2 garlic cloves, crushed • 3 red chillies, seeds removed and chopped • a chunk of ginger, grated • 2 teaspoons of green curry paste • 2 tablespoons of curry powder
• 2 tablespoons of garam masala • 1 tin of whole peeled tomatoes • 1 tin of coconut milk First up, steam the clean, beardless mussels until they open up. Toss the ones that didn’t open back into the ocean and set the open ones aside. Now, heat a potjie over moderate to hot coals, add a glug of olive oil and fry the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger until the onions are soft, then stir in the green curry paste. Next, chuck in all the spices, mix everything around and cook for another minute or two. Add the whole peeled tomatoes and once all the liquid has evaporated, pour in the coconut milk. Once the sauce starts to simmer, add the mussels and cook for about five minutes more. Take it off the heat and serve with freshly baked bread (great to mop up the sauce) or rice, good wine, great friends and a spectacular view of the ocean.
about the book This is the ultimate book for braai lovers. Authored by Justin Bonello, Bertus Basson, Marthinus Ferreira and written by Helena Lombard, Roads Less Travelled: The Ultimate Braai Master Second Series is filled with mouthwatering recipes like White Bean and Smoked Feta Soup, Carpetbagger and Fire-Baked Lemon Tart. It’s published by Penguin Books and can be found at all good bookstores for R230.