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Island Parent Celebrating

29 Years

The Resource Publication for Vancouver Island Parents

February 2017

5 Things No One Tells You   About Having a Second Child

Education Schools & Educational   Services

Experience the precision of customized vision

Dr. Joslin, Dr. Morin & Associates Doctors of Optometry

Langford: #105–814 Goldstream Ave 250-474-4567 Sooke: #5–6726 West Coast Rd 250-642-4311

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Did You Know? By the time your child is six months old, they will acquire eye movement control and develop eye-hand coordination skills. Nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism are the most common vision conditions among children. In addition, the leading cause for vision loss for children is Amblyopia or “Lazy Eye.” This condition is preventable if treated at an early age and can be identified during the first eye exam. Doctors of Optometry are single source for all your vision, eye health and eyewear needs. For more information or to find a Doctor of Optometry nearest you, we invite you to visit



Meet LEGO Certified Professional builder, Robin Sather, and watch him build a giant scene using LEGO bricks! Register online on February 20th at to be entered into the Tillicum LEGO Mania competition. As a contestant, you’ll have the opportunity to bring in your LEGO masterpiece featuring this year’s theme – Happy 150th Birthday, Canada. Visit us online for more details. LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO® Group of companies which does not directly sponsor, authorize or endorse this event. SPONSORED BY:

Shop online at!

Curiosity • Diversity Exploration • Nature Play-Oriented Learning

Register Now for September 2017

3905 Haro Road, Victoria BC



1581 Hillside Ave, Victoria  778•265•5651

Across the street from Hillside Centre Call to schedule your personalized baby registry consultation

Early Childhood Full Year Programs

Registration Starts Sat, Feb 18

Sept 2017 to June 2018 for preschoolers aged 3-5 years. Register your Preschooler starting Saturday February 18 from 8am

KIDDIE CAPERS Open House Sat Feb 4 10am-Noon

SAANICH COMMONWEALTH PLACE Choose a combination of any day and any time. M- F 9 to 11am (Tu and Th location in the Forest) M - F 11:15am to 1:15pm Kiddie Capers in the Classroom M/W 1:30 to 3:30pm Kiddie Capers in the Forest


G.R. PEARKES RECREATION CENTRE Mon Sports and Gym Time Tue Gymnastics and Tumbling Wed Skating and Ice Play Thurs Nature and Outdoors Fri Movement and Music All classes 12:15 -2:15pm




Licensed Preschool GORDON HEAD RECREATION CENTRE M/W 9am-12pm Tu/Th 9am-12pm Gym and Swim F 9am-11:30am


250-475-5400 250-475-7100 250-475-7600

February 2017  3

24 Bee-Friendly Gardens

Island Parent on for Vancouver Island



The Resource Publicati



February 2017

ls You 5 Things No One Tel Child ond About Having a Sec

on cati EduSc hools & Educational Services

FEATURES 12 Janine Fernandes-Hayden: The Value of Volunteering

   16 Lisa Clarabut: Please visit any of our valued partners to pick up your latest copy of Island Parent. GREATER VICTORIA Greater Victoria Public Libraries Vancouver Island Regional Libraries Greater Victoria Recreation Centres Thrifty Foods All 25 Serious Coffee locations Island-wide Victoria Gymnastics Country Grocer Chapters Vitamin Shop The Bay Centre (info booth) Scallywags Royal BC Museum Buddies Toys Crumsby’s Market on Yates Market on Millstream Victoria Conservatory JamTots Lifestyle Market Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre

DUNCAN Duncan Mall (centre court) Indigo Red Balloon Cowichan Recreation Centre Cowichan Aquatics Centre Kinderbeez Duncan Tourist Information CHEMAINUS Chemainus Theatre SHAWNIGAN LAKE Community Centre

    5 Things No One Tells You About Having a Second Child 18 Schools & Educational Services    30 Kate Wiley:       Getting Clear    24 Bee-Friendly Gardens   40 Aileen Fisher: Let Kids Be Kids 42 Food Allergy vs. Food Intolerance In Every ISSUE

Island Parent Notes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Party Directory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Family Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Around the Island. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Family Services Directory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54, 55 Preschool & Child Care Directory . . . . . . . . . . . 56, 57

COLUMNS    5 Sue Fast:

  Editor’s Note


44 Emillie Parrish:

      Cooking With Kids 46 Sarah Milligan: Is There an App for This?    48 Greg Pratt:  Dadspeak   50 Sadie Greco &     Helen von Buchholz:   Healthy Families, Happy Families   52 Sara Cassidy:    Book Nook    58 Laura Trunkey:     Maternity & Beyond    60 Sarah Mimick:      Nature Notes   62 Allison Rees: Cut It Out!

LADYSMITH Ladysmith Recreation Centre NANAIMO Nanaimo Aquatic Centre Quality Foods Country Club Mall Regional Library – Boban Fairway Market Island Natural Health Foods Woodgrove Centre

For a complete list of where you can find a copy of Island Parent Magazine, go to 250-388-6905 4  Island Parent Magazine

Sue Fast

Linda Frear

RaeLeigh Buchanan

Mark Warner


Office Manager & Sales

Advertising Consultant


Design & Layout Eacrett Graphic Design

Distribution Ray Cutts & Ted Dawe

Printed by Black Press

ISSN 0838-5505

Island Parent Magazine 830–A Pembroke Street Victoria, BC V8T 1H9 250-388-6905


Island Parent Teens


Ad Booking Deadline: Feb 8


Ad Booking Deadline: Feb 15

Island Parent Magazine, published by Island Parent Group Enterprises Ltd., is a monthly publication that honours and supports parents by providing information on resources and businesses for Vancouver Island families. Views expressed are not necessarily those of the publisher. No material herein may be reproduced without the permission of the publisher. Annual mail subscriptions (12 issues) are available for $35 (GST included). Canadian Publication Mail Product Sales Agreement 40051398.

On the COVER

Jack D (4). Photo by Ashley Degraaf, Ashley Degraaf Photography,

The Win-Win of a One-on-One


his month, in honour of Valentine’s Day, why not schedule a date night with each of your kids—separate from one with your significant other? Studies show that when kids are given exclusive time with parents, they feel acknowledged, validated and connected. “The small intimacies that are unique to the way you parent a particular child at a particular time of life—theirs and yours—are more likely to appear during one-on-one time,” writes Dr. Kyle Pruett in Psychology Today. “The nicknames, the caresses, the loving teasing that makes them feel treasured by you. These are far less likely to happen, are harder to do and make feel real in a crowd.” Aim to have one-on-ones on a regular basis, advises Pruett, not just on Valentine’s Day. And remember, he adds, this one-on-one time need not be task-driven to be useful— often exactly the opposite. “Time to ‘chill’ is often better understood

by our kids than it is by us, and they are often better at it,” writes Pruett. “But you have to be there, with them, devices off for it to work their magic on both of you.” Time alone—to catch up, to play, to laugh, to listen, to follow your child’s lead—is invaluable. But saddled with never-ending to-do lists and the demands of everyday life and work, not all of us have time for individual dates. Even if you don’t have a stretch of time, you can always catch up over, say, an afterschool snack, or while your other kids are at playdates or—and forgive me if this sounds like cheating—while tackling household duties. As pediatrician and author Dr. Harley Rotbart said in an interview for the New York Times, “Never do a chore alone.” “It may not speed up the task,” he says, “but involving a child in doing the laundry or a basement clean-up is another chance to spend time together.”

Lots of children? Lots of chores? Perfect! Remember, though, he adds, one-on-one time is not about day-to-day efficiency. “It’s about gaining a deeper understanding of who your child is, and giving them a deeper understanding of who you are.” Take advantage of hidden opportunities,

Sue Fast Editor’s Note says Rotbart. Any time you’re alone with your child, even if it’s just a car ride to soccer practice or cleaning out the garage, it’s a chance to talk. Try shifting your kids’ bedtime routine, maybe—even just one night a week—and let one child stay up a little later for an extra story or time to chat. “If your kids are always with their siblings but you’re getting them safely to soccer practice, sitting down to dinner with them, creating that family experience, your kids are going to be fine,” said Rotbart. “But that individual relationship is something you don’t want to miss.”

High School Education in

a University Setting #StartYourJourneyHere The High School at Vancouver Island University is a BC certified independent high school uniquely

Contact: 250.740.6315  /The High School at VIU  @highschoolviu

situated on a university campus.

Now accepting applications for grades 10, 11 and 12. Catherine

The High School at VIU, Grade 11

February 2017  5

Island Parent NOTES GVPL’s StoryWalk Collection

Little girls with dreams become women of vision. Nature-inspired Kindergarten & Early Childhood Education Empowering girls’ leadership program Small school benefits: safe, supportive, high engagement Canada’s first girls’ STEM school: an inquiry-based, interdisciplinary approach to learning Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12 (Boarding: Grades 7–12)

Join us at our Winter Open House FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24 | 9–11AM & 1–3PM | RSVP: Ask about our Lakehill Scholarship for girls in Grades 4 to 7 1080 Lucas Ave, Victoria 250.479.7171

Preschool & Kindergarten Spaces Available

• preschool to grade 2 • before and after

school care

• small class sizes • supportive and

caring staff

• excellent academic


• Kodaly music

A local non-profit for all children (Since 1973) 5575 West Saanich Rd 250 592 4411

6  Island Parent Magazine

program • lovely rural location connecting children to nature

Greater Victoria Public Library took another step toward improving early literacy in the region last month with the introduction of the StoryWalk® collection, which combines the joy of reading with the pleasure of being outdoors. The StoryWalk® collection was created as a tool for families, caregivers and educators to use with young children to promote literacy, learning and outdoor play. Individual pages of an illustrated storybook are placed outdoors in a circuit. Children follow the story by visiting each page in sequence. GVPL’s StoryWalk® collection consists of 30 books including popular titles like The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson and The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle, as well as three French language titles. Patrons can ask about StoryWalk® titles at the service desks of any branch, or search the collection online, place a hold and pick it up at the most convenient GVPL location. The collection was made possible thanks to a Times Colonist Raise-a-Reader grant. Westshore Parks and Recreation has previously offered StoryWalks® to encourage families to be active and use the local trail systems. GVPL launched the StoryWalk® collection in collaboration with Westshore Parks and Recreation in January at the Juan de Fuca branch. StoryWalks® have been installed in 11 countries including Germany, England, Bermuda, Russia, Malaysia and Pakistan. For more information about the StoryWalk® collection, go to

3 Things for Canada

Imagine if every Canadian did three things for their neighbourhood, their nation, and their world this year. This would equal more than 100 million acts of community building. To celebrate Canada’s 150th, Canadians are invited to give a gift of three things—three acts of service, large or small, to help their community. The City of Victoria is joining the 3 Things for Canada initiative to mark Canada’s 150th birthday this year. 3 Things for Canada is a national campaign created by the Mayor’s Civic Engagement Committee of The City of Calgary after a challenge from Mayor Naheed Nenshi to get all Canadians to become more involved in their communities. Examples of what people may choose to do include holding a neighbourhood barbecue or block party, getting to know neighbours at a

coffee gathering, initiating a little library on a local street, volunteering for a non-profit organization, bringing a hot lunch to a senior in need, and more. Citizens are encouraged to be creative as they do these acts of service for their neighbourhood, their nation, or the world. Along with doing three acts of service, citizens are asked to share these good deeds and spread the word, whether it’s posting a photo, video or comment on the 3 Things for Canada Facebook page, using the hashtag #3ThingsforCanada on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, or sending a digital postcard to a friend. For more information, visit and

Raising Children in a Digital World

The digital world is here to stay, changing our society in ways that have far reaching consequences for our children. What are the implications for parenting and teaching? How do we harness the spectacular connecting potential and yet avoid the pitfalls of technology gone awry? How do we prepare kids to live in this new world, while preserving what is required for healthy development to take place? Join developmental psychologist and international speaker Dr. Gordon Neufeld on Friday February 2 from 7-9pm at the Victoria Conference Centre as he looks at the digital revolution and continues to guide teachers and parents to help their children become all they are meant to be. Dr. Neufeld is the author of Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More than Peers. Tickets are $20 and available online at

Parenting the Newborn (including First Aid)

Many parents feel that they want more information on baby care and breastfeeding than fits into childbirth preparation courses. Mothering Touch, 975 Fort St, offers Parenting The Newborn, a workshop taught by

National Sweater Day

experienced childbirth and breastfeeding educators and postpartum doulas, to help parents-to-be feel confident in caring for their new babies. Topics discussed include: the fourth trimester, crying and comforting, swaddling, sleeping arrangements, breastfeeding beyond the first weeks, challenges, how to avoid them and deal with them, pumping and saving breastmilk, baby care, diapering, bathing, baby wearing, infant first aid, infant choking procedures, infant CPR, infant seizures, poisoning, allergic reactions, and prevention of childhood related injuries. The workshops run three consecutive Thursday evenings, February 2-16, from 7-9pm at The Mothering Touch Centre, 975 Fort St. For more information and to register, visit

Butterflyway Call for Rangers

Do you want to help butterflies and bees in Cadboro Bay this year? In February, the David Suzuki Foundation will be recruiting local residents from five cities across the country to join The Butterflyway Project. In each city, these keen volunteers will be trained as local Butterfly Rangers that will help create patches of butterfly and bee-friendly habitat through their neighbourhoods. Ranger training in Victoria will be held March 4 and 5 at Goward House. The application deadline is February 16. To apply, go to (after February 2). Following two inspiring days of training, Rangers will go back to their neighbourhoods with a mission: to plant native wildflowers and shrubs in yards, schools, boulevards and parks—and have fun! Once a Ranger troop plants a dozen or more pollinator patches in a neighbourhood, they’ll get official David Suzuki Foundation Butterflyway designation, including signs and inclusion in the national Butterflyway Project map. Help bring nature home to your neighbour-

On February 2, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) wants you to lower your heat and put on your favourite sweater to take action against climate change and work towards a sustainable future. Join Canadians across the country fighting climate change by conserving energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Heating accounts for 80 per cent of residential energy use in Canada, and is a significant source of emissions. If every Canadian lowered the heat by just 2º C this winter, greenhouse gas emissions would be reduced by 4 megatons—equivalent to shutting down a 600 megawatt coal-fired power station or taking nearly 700,000 cars off the road. So lower the heat, wear that sweater, and make the world a better place for your grandchildren. For more information, visit

Yoga, Support and Fun! February 2017 Schedule 975 Fort Street,Victoria | 250-595-4905

We have lots of classes, activities and support groups for Parents, Babies and Toddlers. All classes are drop-in. Come on down and tryy them out!


Prenatal Yoga 10:30am Family Yoga 12 noon

(all ages, all genders)


Songs & Rhymes for Babies & Toddlers10:15am Mommy & Baby Yoga 1pm Baby Massage 2:30pm Yoga for Labour & Birth 5:15pm

Tuesday Fun in French 10:15am New Baby Group (0-4mos) 11:15am Mom & Baby Strength & Stretch 1:00pm Prenatal Strength & Stretch 5:15pm


Motherhood Circle 10:30am(by registration) Older Baby Group (4-9mo) 1:00pm Prenatal Yoga 5:15pm


Toddler Yoga 10:15am Mom & Baby Yoga 11:30am Mobile Baby Group (9-18mos)1:00pm Prenatal Yoga 5:15pm


Prenatal Yoga 10:15am Sing and Sign with Baby 12 noon Pregnancy Happy Hour 5:00pm

Find more information on all of our classes and groups, on our website at

Are you about to become a Dad? Are you a Dad with a baby under one year? Come and join our Dads’ Workshop A workshop for new fathers and fathers-to-be, to discuss new roles, expectations, life changes, the challenges, and the deep pleasure of being a DAD! Thursday, February 23, 7pm. $35 See our website for more information.

The place for new and expectant parents |

February 2017  7

Is Your Child’s Face Developing Well? Does your child breathe through his/her mouth? Does your child suffer from allergies? Does your child have any oral habit such as thumb or finger sucking? Does your child have an untreated tongue tie? Does your child have crowded teeth? Does your child have jaws that seem too far forward or back?

Early Intervention can have far reaching benefits.


Myobrace® treatment focuses on addressing the underlying causes of poor facial and dental development and can unlock your child’s healthy growth and development. • Promotes breathing through the nose


• Corrects tongue positioning • Retrains the lips and cheeks • Corrects poor swallowing habits

After 6 months

Saanich Dental Group Free Consultation: 250-477-7321 (for children under 12)

Children/Teen (from 7 years)

After school and Saturday classes Fernwood/Bay area


Andrea Bailey

26 years experience

8  Island Parent Magazine

Bigleaf Maple Syrup Festival

The sap will soon be flowing from Bigleaf Maple trees on the West Coast, and syrup makers from the area are sharpening their drill bits in anticipation. At the BC Forest Discovery Centre’s annual Bigleaf Maple Syrup Festival from February 4-5, 10am-4pm, visitors are invited to participate in miniworkshops facilitated by experienced maple syrup producers, including tapping demonstrations, presentations, and displays. This year’s event features cooking with local maple syrup, and maple foods will be available. There’ll be a maple syrup competition with judging by celebrity chefs from Vancouver Island. The evaporator will be running all day so visitors can savour the warm maple aroma of sap and see how syrup is made. The train will be running. For more information, visit

LEGO Brick Festival in Sidney


Emphasis is on sewing clothes they can wear!

hood this year by joining The Butterflyway Project. Applications are due February 16. Please share this message with any butterflylovers and aspiring community leaders in your networks.



or email

The 5th annual Sidney Family Days and Lego Brick Festival takes place February 11, 12 and 13 from 10am-4pm throughout downtown Sidney on all three days of the Family Day weekend. Sidney restaurants and businesses will be open to welcome families. The theme this year is Agriculture and back once again is Lego professional Robin Sather who will build a 6' tractor. On Saturday February 11, the fun starts at 10am when the Sidney Museum opens its doors to hand out the Lego Brick Festival scavenger hunt maps. These can also be picked-up at various event locations. The Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea will feature underwater Lego bricks and the Sidney Pier Hotel will host am intricate and animated Lego brick display by VicLUG. The fun continues Sunday, February 12 in the same locations with all the same activities as well as the start of a 6' Lego tractor inside the Bodine Family Hall at Mary Winspear Centre (2243 Beacon Avenue). On Monday, February 13 all the activities and tractor construction continue at the Mary Winspear Centre. Visitors can also help build a large Lego mosaic. The Mary Winspear Centre will also have Lego play areas for all ages, and a community open house where families can learn about the activities available to family and youth in the Sidney area. Explore Sidney in search of Lego displays, and enter your completed

170119_SPARK_IslandParent_print_ad.pdf 1 1/19/2017 3:04:40 PM

treasure map at the Sidney Museum for your chance to win a prize. Watch for draw boxes and door prize opportunities for Lego prizes all weekend. For information, visit

Jammies & Toons Kidflix

Remember waking up at the crack of dawn to sneak downstairs for morning cartoons in your PJs and munching on your favourite cereal? Well for one day only—Sunday February 12 at 11am—the Victoria Film Festival presents Jammies & Toons, a selection of the best from the New York Children’s International Film Festival. This program is especially aimed at those ages 3-7 (films have either no dialogue or dialogue in English if needed), but will delight all ages. Don’t forget to bring your own bowl and spoon for the cereal. Films include: One, Two, Tree is the story of a tree, a tree like any other. One day, it jumps into a pair of boots and goes off for a walk, inviting everyone to follow. In Octopus, baking a cake should be much easier with eight arms, but that’s only if all C arms agree on what cake they’re going to make. M Me…Jane tells of Jane Goodall, renowned for her work with apes in the jungle, but Y as Patrick McDonnell’s heartwarming tale shows, her curiosity, spirit and senseCMof adventure started long ago. MY In Tiny Tunes, the band performs a pocketCY sized poem about a favourite subject: food. CMY Looks is about a grey lynx who doesn’t quite fit into the colourful world around K him, and resorts to dark behaviour in order to blend in. Tickets $7. For more information and tickets, phone 250-389-0444, email, or visit

Vancouver Island Parenting Conference

Spend Saturday February 25 from 8:30am4pm honing your parenting skills at the conference “Connecting the Dots: School, Home & Community.” Some of the topics include: How to Grow a Child’s Brain, presented by Gary Anaka; Building Habits for Excellence, presented by Brad Buie; E3: Educated, Empowered, and Engaged, presented by Jennifer Gibson; and Possibilities to Help Children Build Confidence and Deal With Stress and Anxiety, presented by Colleen Politano. The conference will take place at Royal Bay Secondary School, 3500 Ryder Hesjedal Way in Victoria. Registration is open. $100 early bird rate (valid before February 10) or $140 regular admission. Registration includes lunch

SMUS has reinvented the school open house. Visit our Junior, Middle & Senior Schools on Friday, February 24 to experience hands-on learning with our exceptional teachers. Find out why SMUS has such an outstanding reputation and take a tour around our busy campuses.

bout Learn a id al A Financi hip ars & Schol ies nit opportu

Find out more and register at:

February 2017  9

and refreshments. All conference materials will be provided on a complimentary memory stick. As space is limited, registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, visit

The 16th Annual Maple Sugar Festival du Sucre d’Érable

The largest bilingual festival on Vancouver IslandrunsFebruary24-26attheBebanAuditorium located at 2300 Bowen Road in Nanaimo. In February of every year, Nanaimo pulsates with the rhythm of the Maple Sugar Festival du Sucre d’Érable. This bilingual festival is a one-of-a-kind event inspired by eastern Canada’s sugar shack traditions. Over the course of three days, festivities will include educational presentations, performances by a diverse range of entertainers, and authentic traditional French Canadian food fare, notably the decadently sweet sugar toffy on snow. Come to Nanaimo and discover the Festival’s ambiance, the joie de vivre, and the warm hospitality. For information, including an event schedule and ticket prices visit

Think Pink for Anti-Bullying Day

Pink Shirt Day, or Anti-Bullying Day, is on the fourth Wednesday in February every

year. This year, that will be on February 22. Now in its ninth year, Pink Shirt Day, a public awareness campaign about bullying spearheaded by CKNW and promoted locally by Boys & Girls Clubs, has grown into a national movement. Last year, over 2,500 official pink shirts were sold on Vancouver Island alone, and thousands more people wore pink clothing to show their solidarity for the campaign. Pink Shirt Day is aimed at uniting people in a movement to change people’s attitudes towards bullying. It teaches young people that we need to be more accepting of differences and that we cannot stand by and watch as bullying occurs around us. Schools, police departments, businesses, politicians and youth groups across Vancouver Island are using this day to raise awareness of the negative effects of bullying and show that any form of bullying will not be tolerated in their organization. You too can join the sea of pink. Take this opportunity to address the issue of bullying with your children or teens, by wearing pink, planning an event or activity, or just having an intentional conversation. You can order your shirts through or find tips, activity ideas and planned events by contacting Boys & Girls Club through

Wigs for Kids

On Friday February 24 from 10am-6pm, children’s hair salon, Lizzy Lee and Me, in conjunction with BC Children’s Hospital, is hosting its 4th annual Wigs for Kids, a cuta-thon fundraiser in aid of children who, for various medical reasons, have lost their hair and would benefit from a wig. The event will take place at the Shelbourne Plaza Lizzy Lee and Me Salon (3655 Shelbourne St). Ponytails snipped at the cut-a-thon will be collected to be used for custom-fitted wigs for patients of BC Children’s Hospital. It takes over 20 ponytails, 9" or longer, to create a wig. Hair must never have been coloured or permed. Come with clean, dry hair, not braided. Hair donation package (includes donation, consultation, wash and restyle and keepsake photo) costs $49.99 for an adult, $39.99 for a child (under 14). Regular haircut trim or head-shave is $20. For information or to book an appointment, phone 250-590-5568 or email

Parent Support Circles

Sometimes you just need a little space to talk with other parents. Parent Support Services operates on the belief that every parent is the expert of her/his own family. Sometimes it just takes a bit of space to hear


Academic Excellence Innovative Thinking Global Citizenship Open House February 6 Scholarship Day February 20

JrK-Grade 12 IB World School • 10  Island Parent Magazine

yourself and the voices of other parents to find your way through. To that end, Parent Support Services hosts meetings in Parksville, Nanaimo and North Nanaimo (including a Nanaimo Parents of Children with Autism Support Circle). For more information and to register, email or visit

In-School Mentoring Programs

Studies show that mentoring helps kids stay in school, avoid risky behavior such as bullying, and grow up having more respect for family, peers and community. Helping children reach their full potential can lead to positive community outcomes like a reduction in poverty and unemployment, safer schools and neighbourhoods, and a new generation of civic-minded adults. Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Victoria’s In-School Mentoring program provides girls and boys with an adult role model and a friend to talk to and share the experiences of growing up with, within school grounds. For one hour a week, mentors meet with their mentee and engage in activities such as board games, crafts or just hang out in the playground. BBBS offers In-School Mentoring at the following elementary schools: Cloverdale Traditional Elementary School, Colwood Elementary School, Ecole Quadra Elementary, Fernwood Elementary School, George Jay Elementary School, Ruth King Elementary School, Salt Spring Elementary School, Tillicum Elementary School, Victoria West Elementary School In-School Mentoring strives to: • provide a role model and a friend for girls and boys • promote the importance of staying in school and healthy relationships

Live 5-2-1-0

• instill trust and self-confidence in order to make healthy decisions • encourage leadership skills and independent thinking • and above all, make a difference while having fun For more information or to apply, visit, email main.victoria@ or phone 250-4751117 ext. 40.

Support for Those With Learning Disabilities

The Learning Disabilities Association of BC (LDABC) The Learning Curve supports families, and educates and advocates for children and youth experiencing learning and/or behavioral challenges. The South Vancouver Island Chapter was formed in 1981 by a group of parents and teachers who were concerned about their children, or children in their classrooms who were not reaching their potential. Each year The Learning Curve’s staff and volunteers serve over 2,500 children and youth, their families and concerned professionals. The Learning Curve currently offer the following programs and services: Support: Academic Skills Program, Reading and Writing Program, Emotional and Social Development Program, individual support programs for parents and children education, annual Professional Development Conference, resource centre/lending library outreach, displays/presentations, lead and AD/HD workshops, parent education/ support events, publications and websites. Advocacy: parent support, youth support, Know Your Rights booklets, and systemic advocacy at the provincial level. For more information about how LDABC The Learning Curve, can help your child, visit

Live 5-2-1-0 is a simple, easy-to-remember message to help kids and families adopt healthy habits. We know that a consistent message that is supported by a healthy community environment is important. By working together with communities, Live 5-2-1-0 helps build partnerships and opportunities to create healthy environments where kids can eat well and be active every day. What is Live 5-2-1-0? Live 5-2-1-0 provides four simple guidelines for raising healthy children: 5—Enjoy five or more vegetables and fruits every day. 2—Limit screen time to no more than two hours a day. 1—Play actively for at least one hour a day. 0—Drink zero sugar-sweetened drinks. How do you Live 5-2-1-0? Visit the Live 5-2-1-0 website at to learn more about the program and access free resources to help you, your family and your community Live 5-2-1-0 every day.•

Does your child have difficulty reading? • can’t read words just read earlier • letter reversal • symptoms of dyslexia • “sounds out” words but can not blend them correctly • confuses similar sounding words • avoids reading/poor speller I offer an effective program that works! Call for more information or to arrange your individualized one-on-one tutoring solution.

Brenda Osadchy 778-440-0997 February 2017  11

The Value of Volunteering Games, toys and play


olunteering is important to our family. As a parent, I see it as a way of nurturing those virtues and skills that can be hard to validate in our often achievement-driven culture. Our family’s bank of time is no different than that of the average family, with the competing demands of work, school and extra-curricular activities. However, in deciding our priorities, we claim volunteerism as non-negotiable. It is a choice that we make and a priority that I defend. My family’s volunteer commitments are varied and reflect ways that we as a family can give of our time, talent and treasures. Once a month, as part of an organized group, we serve food to our island homeless and/or needy population. Each week, we visit a local seniors’ residential facility. Every September, my children help me organize our local Terry Fox Run, and on the July 1st Canada Day long weekend, we host a lemonade stand and bake sale to raise money for a local charity. We have been volunteering for years now, ever since my oldest child, now 11, was a six-month-old baby. All this may sound exemplary, but it is not without its challenges and battles. Our volunteer times are peppered with grievances like, “I’m bored” and “Can we go home now?” punctuated with irritating pinches, arm pulls and kicks to my ankles. Some days when we all leave

12  Island Parent Magazine

feeling grumpy, I wonder what benefits have been derived from the experience or what lessons have been learned, if any. As with any endeavour that persists past the novelty stage, things can start to feel stale. I hope that one day my children will appreciate the intrinsic gifts of volunteerism. For now however, it can feel like a mechanical and rote exercise. I often think of the movie “UP” and, in particular, the very monotone and impassive way that Russell reads to Carl Fredricksen from his wilderness explorer handbook: “Good afternoon my name is Russell and I am a wilderness explorer in tribe 54 Sweatlodge 12 are you in need of any assistance today sir?” Sometimes it feels like we are all just inexpressively (and ungrammatically) reading out of the “Volunteering How-To” handbook. I want to give my family meaningful opportunities that help them develop kindness, generosity, patience and understanding. For any learner, especially the younger ones, “meaningful” usually equals “relevant.” This is the challenge when teaching the value of volunteering to children who are at an egocentric stage of development. In our experience, most of the people we volunteer with are ones that my children would not normally encounter on a regular basis. They look different and act different and

this can be uncomfortable. It can be hard for my children to connect with a sense of “sameness.” As a result, the disengagement occurs. We talk about the impact that they make, but at their level of life experience, it is hard to know whether they grasp the value that is very qualitative in nature. I wonder how we can overcome our feelings of being “different” so we can connect with a deeper sense of unity and humanity that brings with it true empathy and compassion? I recently had an ah-ha moment. When our yearly lemonade stand and bake sale

Monday, February 6th Willway Elementary

Wednesday, February 8th Ecole Poirier Elementary

Monday, February 20th Crystal View Elementary

Wednesday, March 6th

Hans Helgesen Elementary

Monday, March 13th Savory Elementary

Janine FernandesHayden

Wednesday, March 15th Lakewood Elementary

Monday, April 10th Saseenos Elementary

rolled around, the children decided they wanted to raise money for the local Special Olympics Association. We spent a lot of time talking about people with intellectual disabilities and how important it was for them to have a chance to embrace their abilities and experience success. Before our event, we applied a fresh coat of paint to our lemonade stand and planned our menu, which offered not only novel flavours of lemonade but also a selection of decadent baked goods. I sent out an advance email invite to friends and family to generate a steady stream of customers. Though the day threatened rain, the sun shone and in two hours, the children raised $315.61. The local Special Olympics Association was thrilled and invited us to present the money at their weekly Bocce game in the park. We agreed but once there and confronted with “the fear of difference,” my children instantly took to my side. Just prying them loose for a photograph with the team was like peeling paint with a scraper. But then something changed. The Bocce coach invited us to play a game with them. We had never played before so we came with the disadvantage of not knowing the game and its rules. It took a little bit of prodding, but as my children overcame their insecurities, they started to have fun. More than fun, they started to care. I delighted in hearing them cheer for their teammates by name. My two younger girls fetched balls like eager puppies. I watched as my son, only nine years old, escorted players to their throw, gently guiding them to and from the court. Most surprising was seeing

Wednesday, April 12th Millstream Elementary

JOIN US!  6 – 7 PM Ready, Set, Read Children ages 0 to 5 years

Join us for pre-bedtime fun! We will be playing games, enjoying snacks, and listening to a few delightful stories and songs. This FREE evening is for children aged 0 to 5 years and their parents/caregivers. Activities take place in the school gym, 6 – 7pm. Running shoes suggested, wear pajamas if you like. For more info contact

Spring Break Programs March 13–24, for all kids in Victoria ages 5–15, including:

Springtime Chefs Passion Sports Spring Break Elite Camp On the Wild Side And much more... For information or to register, visit our website at: or call 250-370-6120

FOR ALL KIDS IN VICTORIA AGES 5–15 February 2017  13

Inspired to Learn Guided by Character Empowered to Lead


Co-ed Preschool-Grade 7 • Girls University-Prep High School Grades 8-12 Visual & Performing Arts • Outdoor Education • Global Studies French • On-Campus Equestrian Program | T 250 746-4185 660 Brownsey Avenue, Duncan, BC

my children relinquish their need to be first and instead deferring their turn to others. What had happened to make this encounter suddenly relevant and meaningful? The difference was between talking about people with intellectual disabilities versus being with them. And they had fun laughing and learning together. The sense of “us” and “them” had dissolved into a communion defined by mutual trust and vulnerability. Philosopher Jean Vanier believed that when serving others, it is not enough to understand, care for and reveal to them their value. We also need to celebrate life with them and empower them to do for themselves and discover their own meaning and purpose. To serve deeply reflects an inclusion and belonging defined by a reciprocal appreciation that both sides are receiving and being received. In manifesting the joy of simply being and doing with them, our new friends received the love and care of my children who saw them with intimacy or “in to me see.” In return, my children received the gift of their emotions, born out of a sense of purposefulness and acceptance.

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14  Island Parent Magazine

After that day, I began to think about how we could make our weekly visits to the seniors’ residential care facility more meaningful. For a long time, our show involved a piano recital followed by story time with our favourite kid-friendly and, as it turns out, senior-friendly books such as We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, Pete the Cat, and stories/poems by Beatrix Potter and Shel Silverstein. It was enjoyable enough for the seniors who always delighted in seeing the

Just like in the movie “UP,” balloons were the catalyst we needed to take our experience to new heights. became irrelevant. It was an activity that felt comfortable with or without words as we focused on the activity. We challenged ourselves to see how many we could keep in the air all at once, while always forgiving each other when we missed. Like magic, once again, we had tapped into the virtue of humanity and connected to something deeper through our shared joyfulness. I have since tried to think of other games to play but we always come back to balloons because it is so much fun and no one seems to have yet grown tired of the game. I realize now that it’s not so much what we do together, but how we do it together. I look forward to living out this new view of volunteering with my children. As they get older, I believe that this type of heart work will help my children fulfill their need for “being with” and “being like” in pro-social ways that enhance positive mental health and encourage tolerance and compassion. For now, however, I love the fact that volunteering can be fun and synonymous with play, all the while fostering unity and nursing the seeds of character.

2016 Child Care Award of Excellence for Leadership: Lexie Biegun

September Registration for our 3 to 5 year program opens February 1 Reggio-Inspired programs Nurture through Nature Infants/Toddlers/ Pre-Kindergarten On 2 acres in the forest!

Photo: Tashamae Cline Photography

children, but I must admit that even I had grown bored of our routine. We were “doing to” instead of “doing with” which felt somewhat hierarchical and disconnected. How could I recreate the same feelings we discovered that afternoon at the Bocce field and bring my children out of their heads and into their hearts? Just like in the movie “UP,” balloons were the catalyst we needed to take our experience to new heights. All we did was toss and catch balloons together and in doing so, age, missing teeth and wheelchairs

“In every walk with NATURE one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir

Waitlist: 250-590-3603

Janine Fernandes-Hayden is an educator and mom of four children. She is a trained Virtues Project Facilitator and also works for Volunteer and Community Resources on Saltspring Island.

February 2017  15

5 Things No One Tells Send You About Having Us Your a Second Child Stories! S Island Parent is looking for articles for upcoming issues. Some of our best content comes from people just like you—Vancouver Island parents who are passionate about their families and are dealing with the day to day issues of raising children in our community. Share your experiences, your thoughts on a particular issue, your ideas on places to see or projects to do—anything related to parenting. Check our Writer’s Guidelines at for specific information on submissions. We’d love to hear from you. Please email submissions to

16  Island Parent Magazine

o you’ve had your first child and you’d like a second, or maybe your second is on the way. You might figure you’ve done this once before, how many surprises could there be this time around? You and your bundle of joy have survived the famous infant lunge, where said bundle lunges out of your arms towards a pot of boiling pasta, say, or a snarling dog. You’ve survived countless tantrums, late nights, early mornings and encounters with your child’s bodily fluids. Your marriage is intact. “Bring it on, Baby!” you might be thinking. Well your second born does indeed have some surprises in store for you.

tually at all functions, have exciting sex six nights a week, bathe your kids regularly, keep your house spotless and still have time to suss out adorable crafts on Pinterest (which turn out the way they’re supposed to when you make them). I am not one of those parents. In fact, while I kinda sorta

Amalia Colussi

You will mix up your children’s names.

managed to stay on top of most things most of the time with one child, with two I am one of four children and I’ve pretty much thrown in the towel. Well, always figured the sheer number actually I’m pretty good with the laundry. of us—four siblings, sundry tag- For me, it’s the house cleaning that never along friends, two rowdy dogs— seems to happen until we have guests or so taxed my parents’ brains they mixed us the bathroom starts to smell like a public up. Especially hectic days brought forth a restroom the day of an eight-year-old boys’ litany of names as we waited to hear just watermelon eating contest. who was being ordered to put their laundry You will mess up in new away versus who was to put together a salad and creative ways. for dinner. I’ve got a measly two offspring My husband and I used to and I’ve already reached the same level of cekeep a sort of running tally of rebral short-circuiting. Perhaps it’s because mess-ups we made with our first I had my kids later in life than my parents that we’d prefer not to repeat did, so my brain was pre-aged; or perhaps with our second (we use a slightly it’s simply another of the little quirks, like PMS, that Mother Nature has worked into more colourful term than “mess-ups”). life for some obscure evolutionary purpose. Nothing written down, nothing formal or Regardless, it’s a harmless enough problem, binding in any way. Just an informal list occasionally even funny. Just keep a bottle of things to bear in mind when the second of wine or some good chocolate stashed child arrived. For example: Me: “Hey, remember that time Isaac was away for the time you accidentally call your husband by your grandfather’s name. home sick from daycare for the umpteenth time and he and I were going stir-crazy and I couldn’t think of what to do with him You will always be behind because I didn’t want to take him outside, in something. so I let him jump on the couch while listenYou might be one of those ing to music?” mythical super-parents who Husband: “Yes.” somehow manages to cook nutritious Me: “Let’s never do that ever again.” meals the whole family relishes, Husband: “Let’s? That was 100 per cent line-dry all the laundry you’re your idea.” always on top of, arrive

After enough time passed, we came to find many list entries pretty funny. Then our daughter arrived. She’s still young but thus far our list is useless because, of course, she’s an entirely different person. So just as snowflakes and sets of fingerprints are unique, so, too, are the ways you’ll mess up with each child.

You will become regimented, even when you are spontaneous.

The hardest thing I’ve had to learn so far with kid #2 is that she has to fit into our existing family routines, instead of the family’s routines adapting entirely to her needs. Life can revolve around your first. If mine napped late, we ate dinner late, no biggie. My second gets a single shot at her afternoon nap. She has a 15 minute buffer, but anything beyond that means I either have to wake her up so we can pick up her brother from school (Cruelty! Who wakes a sleeping baby?), or she wakes early and has to hang on until bedtime. For our family, spontaneity has become more regimented now. As in, “She’s awake! We’ve got three-and-a-half to four hours for some quality nature time! Quick, gear up and we’ll decide where we’re going when we’re in the car!”

l Parents l

Foster a love of education in your preschooler Social development and life-long learning habits start at early ages Instilled through the proven Montessori educational system Preschool (ages 2.5 through 6) • Affordable tuition rates – Schedule choices • Low teacher to children ratio • Ongoing enrollment • On-site visiting encouraged – Schedule an observation

International Montessori Academy 2375 Koksilah Road, Duncan, BC V9L 6M5 250-737-1119

You will be amazed at the love you feel.

When I was pregnant with my first child many people would congratulate me, then launch into a catalogue of The Most Horrible Moments In Parenting Ever. The best thing anyone ever said to me was, “You’ll be amazed at the love you feel for your child.” I almost wept then and there. One night near the end of my second pregnancy, I looked in at my sleeping son and wondered how I could ever duplicate the ferocious love I feel for him. I was ashamed to admit it to myself but I wondered if I could ever love anyone the same mamma tiger way I loved my first. I can and do. You can and you will, too. You’ll dote and fuss and, no, it won’t be the same as with kid #1 but it will still be wonderful. You’ll fall in love with kid #2’s funny ways and unique quirks. You just might forget her name. Amalia Colussi is happy with two kids, thanks, and she’ll clean the bathroom soon. Really soon.

Together We Thrive

The Learning Clinic Nanaimo (TLC) TLC Nanaimo provides education assessment, planning and support for children and teens identified with dyslexia or a learning disability. Contact Us 250.591.0702

TLC The Learning Clinic

February 2017  17

Schools & Educational Services In the following pages you will find a range of educational resources from preschool to postsecondary. For more information about these programs, please refer to the advertising in this issue.


Arbutus Grove Children’s Centre (formerly known as Goosey Gander Kindergarten) has a long history of providing outstanding Early Learning programs to the Victoria community. Our centre is a bright and engaging purpose-built preschool with a large, natural playground surrounded by C M Y K urban forest. We offer half- and full-day 68 35 2 2 programs for 3- and 4-year-olds and a 8 95 55 16 small after-school program for kindergarten children attending Frank Hobbs School. Children’s curiosity, sense of wonder and innate desire to learn is nurtured and supported through exploration, play, discovery and creative expression. Located in the Cadboro Bay-UVIC area. or 250-477-3731.

ArtsCalibre Academy. There’s a reason why the first years of a child’s life are considered “formative”—they truly form the person, and profoundly influence the path and quality of the rest of their life. We believe that Fine Arts are the perfect vehicle for this formative process. Through our structured but fun program of music, dance, theatre and visual arts, children not only absorb these and all academic subjects with enthusiasm and ease, but they also develop the creativity, confidence and social skills to successfully apply them throughout their future. It’s this philosophy and comprehensive program that sets us apart from every other preschool. It’s the Art of Preschool. 250-382-3533.

Bloom Montessori proudly offers a child-centered Montessori curriculum for students aged 2.5 to 6. We have half-day or full-day options, and before/after school care. Our morning program provides children the opportunity for a 3 hour uninterrupted work cycle, circle time with songs and stories, and an extended outdoor play period. Our multi-age classroom encourages a strong community, with the older children helping and serving as models for their younger classmates. Bloom Montessori is located in View Royal, with a second location opening in Langford, September 2017. For more information please email or call 250812-3137.

VIU: Your choice for studies in Special Education

Master of Education in Special Education Part-Time Option

Blended model that is accessible from anywhere in BC and beyond.

Full-Time Option

Study full-time at VIU for two semesters. Complete your degree in three semesters.

18  Island Parent Magazine

Ana Vieira, Coordinator

For more information contact Phone: 250.740.6221







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February 2017  19

Bleiddyn del Villar Bellis Artistic Director Fellow & Examiner CSC-CICB Enrico Cecchetti Final Diploma

2017 Children’s Summer Camps Storybook Ballet Programs for ages 4-10 Kinder Camp Ages 4-6

July 4-7 or July 24-28

Children’s Camp Ages 6-10

July 10-14 or July 17-21






Carrot Seed Preschool. We provide a wonderfully rich, inclusive environment for children to play, explore and “live in the moment,” so they can grow into independent and self-directed individuals. Children need to run, jump and climb freely outdoors for healthy brain development. Our spacious playground provides this opportunity. We support the child’s right to learn through play, and believe that children must play in a diverse inside and outside setting. We encourage curiosity in children. We help guide them as they seek out answers and encourage them to “ask why” as much as they like. Our teachers pay close attention to the interests of the children, and provide the environment and materials needed to support their curiosity. 250-658-2331. Extended hours and full time spots available! Emmanuel Preschool is a welcoming and inclusive Christian preschool, where students with special needs have the support of two additional teachers. Our morning classes are offered either two or three days per week. Both programs are for 3- and 4-year-olds and include stories, games, singing, arts and crafts, science activities, free play (indoors and outdoors) and some field trips. Each class is licensed for a maximum of 20 children and has two licensed and experienced Early Childhood Educators. Our staff strive to teach and model Christian attitudes and values, and to maintain a warm, caring and safe environment. For more information, visit 250-598-0573 or

Lexie’s Little Bears. Nestled in a forest in the beautiful Highlands lies a special place for children to learn and grow. Lexie’s Little Bears is a magical, Reggio-Inspired Nature Daycare for infants, toddlers, and PreKindergarten age children. Here your child will learn in nature and be free to explore our 2 acre forest with guidance from our caring, nature loving educators. Our facility is hand built using the trees from our own property whenever we can. We have just expanded our Infant/Toddler program and we are now registering for our 3 to 5 years program starting in September. Don’t miss out! Visit us at and call for our wait list at 250-590-3603.

West Shore Parks and Recreation’s licensed preschool offers a variety of programs including Kinderprep, Nature Preschool, and multi-age classes with both small and larger class sizes. With flexible registration options and a play-based curriculum, our program is designed to help little ones grow and learn in a fun and safe environment. Visit westshorerecreation. ca or call 250-478-8384 for information. Follow us on Facebook: westshorerecreation.


Sun. Feb. 19 at 1, 4 & 7pm Mon. Feb. 20 at 7pm Avalon Cinema, Woodgrove

Langford Montessori Junior Kindergarten

Tickets: $13 250-754-7587 |

20  Island Parent Magazine

Langford Montessori Junior Kindergarten. New 5 hour morning preschool program (9am-2pm) starting this fall! A small class size and home-like setting makes our program C M Y K a great bridge between daycare and We make learning fun as 68 35Kindergarten. 2 2 we our world through individual8 95explore 55 16 ized curriculum activities. Rain or shine, we enjoy spending lots of time outdoors in our forest-like play yard. Music, dance, yoga and lots of field trips are included! Full and part time spaces available for children ages 3—5. Visit our website for pictures and more information. 250-857-5895.

ArtsCalibre Academy. Imagine a school… where music, dance, theatre and visual arts are infused into all aspects of an outstanding curriculum. The result is a learning process in which students experience, explore, exercise, and express themselves in order to truly understand and remember. Our structured but dynamic program consistently exceeds the B.C. Ministry of Education’s Curricula for Kindergarten to Grade 7. Dedicated, highly qualified educators, excellent facilities and safe Gordon Head location, which is also home to our Junior Kindergarten. We also offer Preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds within the Cedar Hill Recreation Centre’s beautiful Fine Arts wing. 250-382-3533. Christ Church Cathedral School (CCCS) is Victoria’s Anglican JK, Elementary and

Middle School, welcoming students from all backgrounds. CCCS offers before and after school care, a wide range of extra-curricular programs, small class sizes, high calibre learning in math, science and technology, a strong focus on fine arts and progressive athletics programs. Weekly chapel service and seasonal performances are held in beautiful Christ Church Cathedral just a few steps away. Through focused encouragement of personal responsibility, self-discipline, community service and engaging learning opportunities with dedicated teachers, CCCS helps children realize their true potential. 250-383-5125. Discovery School. Is your child bright, yet struggling in school? Would your child work best in a classroom of 10 students with a 1:3 staff to student support ratio? Perhaps your child requires an individual program with adaptations/ modifications. Are you looking for a quiet, nurturing school with a Christian atmosphere that encourages academic development, perseverance, responsibility, and organizational skills? Look no further!

For 39 years Discovery School has been providing these services for struggling students. Discovery follows B.C. curriculum, is Ministry inspected, and provides this special education from the early grades to The Individual Learning Centre (ILC) graduation. More information found at is a high school of choice for students or call 250-595-7765. in grades 9 through 12. We are different than neighbourhood high schools as we Elizabeth Buckley are a smaller, quieter environment where STEaM School (EBSS) students receive one-on-one time with (K-8) offers small teachers rather than being in large classes classes and a warm, with multiple levels and needs. Anxiety is welcoming environminimized as students and families work ment for all learners. along with Teacher Advisers to create the The first school in best Graduation Plans possible. We do this the region to offer a STEaM curriculum throughout the school year; offering flex(Science, Technology, Engineering, Math ibility, continual entry, duel credit college and the Arts), EBSS transforms the typical level courses, and continuous progress for teacher-centred classroom by offering a cur- students. For more information, please see riculum based on inquiry and exploration our website: that actively engages children in learning. Our program develops critical thinking, cre- Island Montessori Preschool and Kinderativity and responsible citizenship through garten through Grade Two. Our non-profit, meaningful, authentic experiences in the child-centered program offers Preschool, classroom and out in the community. Learn Kindergarten through Grade Two as well more about our unique program by visiting as Before and After School Care,, calling 250-995-6425, or ing a sense of well-being, confidence and emailing us at Learn- independence. The staff of Island Montesing by doing—discover the difference. sori are committed to providing a rich, safe, developmentally appropriate and caring


Gift with purchase Receive a complimentary book*, Feeding the Family: 100 Years of Food and Drink in Victoria,, when you purchase a membership. Enjoy exclusive discounts on programs and unlimited access to feature exhibitions including: TERRY FOX: RUNNING TO THE HEART OF CANADA Apr 12 – Oct 1, 2017 FAMILY: BONDS AND BELONGING Jun 2 – Oct 31, 2017 WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2017 Dec 8, 2017 – Apr 8, 2018 *One book per membership purchased. Valid with online and box office purchases. Offer valid February 1–28, 2017, or while supplies last. Not valid with IMAX. Not valid with any offers. No refunds or exchanges.

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February 2017  21

environment, and establishing a rapport with each and every child. Individual and group activities with a connection to nature in our rural location foster growth in all areas of development. We are proud to have children from a variety of economic, religious and ethnic backgrounds, as well as a host of abilities and needs. Our rural location at 5575 West Saanich Road is beautiful. Reach us at or 250-592-4411.

Helping your family find the perfect place to call home. Melissa Collins Your Family REALTOR®

250-510-2729 RE/MAX Duncan

Oak and Orca Bioregional School and Oak and Orca PrePrimary School offer BC-certified PrePrimary and K-12 education in a child-directed environment. This ungraded program provides students with structure, opportunities, and choice, allowing them to learn at their own pace and in their own way. As part of a community of learners students are able to practice effective communication, think and act creatively, and develop into responsible ecological citizens. Regular field trips encourage connections with the natural and cultural heritage of the larger community. Blended learning opportunities are available (space-permitting) to students in the Hands-On Home-Learning (DL) program., info@oakandorca. ca, 250-383-6609. Pacific Christian School: Educational Excellence to the Glory of God. PCS nurtures students in Christlike living, critical thinking and joyful service to be faithful citizens in God’s world. PCS is committed to a Christian program of instruction helping children gain a true Biblical perspective of who they are, and prepares them for a life of dedication and service to God. By developing a sense of goal-directedness, coupled with skills of self-discipline and self-evaluation, children will be equipped to develop their talents and gifts to their fullest God-given potential. Quality academics, athletics and more. Accepting registrations for pre-school to grade 12. 250-479-4532. St. Joseph’s Elementary School is a Catholic school where children learn to love, and love to learn. We build strong foundations for a bright future, with a rigor-

22  Island Parent Magazine

ous academic program integrated into a Catholic atmosphere that permeates all we do. Our newly seismically upgraded school, with a new Primary wing, Library Learning Commons, and two new Kindergarten rooms, provides bright, dynamic learning environments for students. We offer a challenging education program including Fine Arts, Music, Band, French K-7, and Athletics. Religious education is central to the school, where children learn in a Catholic Christian atmosphere where the teachings of Christ are paramount. Come learn with us—we are accepting registration for Preschool, Day Care, Kindergarten, as well as grades one through seven.

At St. Margaret’s School, we seek to empower each girl to set her own course and shape her own dreams. Tucked away on 22-acres in the Blenkinsop Valley in Victoria, SMS is an all-girls school where your daughter can be herself, build confidence, and experience being a leader. SMS teachers and our unique environment offer rich resources and challenges to support each girl’s development as a student, an individual, and a global-minded citizen. Our rigorous academic program emphasizes STEM learning and leadership at all levels from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12, and is supported by experiential programs designed to engage students in learning beyond the classroom. Enjoy the benefits of a small school from high participation in athletics, to extensive extracurricular opportunities, to our tight-knit community where each girl is known and driven to achieve. or 250-479-7171. St. Michaels University School. A break from school does not have to mean a break from learning. When students want to tackle something new and exciting, our Spring Break programs offer plenty of ways young people can stay entertained. From baking to sports to animation, holiday programs are diverse and engaging. The Passion Sports team also returns with more sell-out elite basketball camps. The Spring Break Programs at St. Michaels University School are open to all children in Victoria ages 5 to 15 and appeal to a wide range of interests. For information on any of these exciting programs, visit our website at smus. ca/spring or call 250-370-6120.

Victoria School for Ideal Education. This oneof-a-kind little school offers holistic education from Kindergarten to Grade 8 in a nurturing, stress-free environment. The twice daily children’s meditation, coupled with the study of nature and the laws that keep us in tune with the natural world, have attracted families from all over the Victoria area. Within this framework we cover the BC curriculum and all our teachers are BC certified. The Oct. 2013 Ministry of Education inspection report states, “The depth of care for each student, the level of personal support provided, and the degree of empathy displayed, all contribute to a family-like atmosphere and encouraging school setting for students.” There are still a few spaces left for the 2016-2017 school year in Kindergarten and Grades 3, 4, 5, and 7. Phone 250-383-6654 to arrange a tour. Website:

Distributed Learning Under the new BC curriculum, inquiry and personalization are key to 21st century learning. Hands-On HomeLearning (DL) at Oak and Orca (K-12) offers an experience-based,

Contact our offices at 250-386-1171 or by emailing

©2016 Kumon Canada, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Westmont Montessori School is a local community minded independent school committed to academic excellence in a caring, learning environment. Our familyoriented learning environment takes an individual approach to learning where students are challenged to be the best they can be from early primary through to their middle years. At the heart of the Montessori philosophy is the belief that each person is a unique individual with strengths to contribute to society. It is a method designed to engage a child’s natural curiosity within an environment that is specially prepared to maximize learning opportunities. For details about our programs visit west-mont. ca, or stop by our campus in Metchosin for a tour every Thursday from 9-11am. Westmont Montessori School, 4075 Metchosin Rd, Victoria BC. 250 474 2626.

Little Steps Therapy Services offers the following services for all children: Little Learners therapeutic program for school readiness. Connections therapeutic groups for school-aged children. Connections therapeutic groups for children who are homeschooled. Clinical services including behaviour consulting, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, speech-language therapy, art therapy and feeding therapy.

Give your child an academic advantage in school and beyond! Schedule a Parent Orientation today. Kumon Math & Reading Centres of West Shore - Langford 115-963 Langford Pkwy, Victoria 250-516-2991

Saanich 204-3965 Quadra St, Victoria 250-479-1800 • 250-216-2142(c)

Sidney 10091 Resthaven Dr, Sidney 250-896-8879

February 2017  23

individualized, and child-led approach. Families are supported in providing engaging opportunities so each student can follow their own learning path and build on their strengths and interests. All learning experiences are acknowledged and tied to BC learning standards or high school courses by a certified teacher. Original, multi-age, hands-on learning activities are provided to inspire inquiry. Blended learning opportunities are available (space-permitting) at Oak and Orca Bioregional School and Forest School. Special Education inquiries are welcome., info@oakandorca. ca, 250-383-6619. 1-888-383-6619. Is your child homeschooled? Little Steps Therapy Services will be running therapeutic groups to compliment at-home learning programs through the 2017/2018 school year. These groups are designed to give homeschooled children a chance to engage with their peers and their community. They will include opportunities to work on independent living skills, social skills, community awareness, and recreation. All goals for the groups are created by Occupational Therapists, Speech and Language Pathologists, and Behaviour Consultants. If you are interested in registering your child,

please contact Little Steps Therapy Services The Community Learning Centre offers a by phone at 250-386-1171 or by emailing blend of strong academic foundations and individualized “unschooling” experiences. Students enjoy creative, collaborative and personalized activities in a variety of setMid-Island Schools/ tings. If you are looking for an educational Education Services experience for your child, this is the place for you. Join us for weekly Project-Based Aspengrove School Learning, Home Economics, Science, Math, is a JrK-Grade 12 InEnglish, Farm School and more. Junior dependent School in Programs, 6-10 years. Senior Programs, Lantzville, BC at the 11-16 years. #16 Valleyview Centre, 1400 Northern edge of NaCowichan Bay Rd, Cobble Hill. Cobblenaimo on a 250-929-5555. ful 40-acre wooded campus, teaching the world-renowned International Baccalaureate curriculum. With 310 students, Aspengrove is offering a new entrance scholarship program that is available to students entering grades Duncan Christian School partners with 6-10 in September 2017; additionally, a families to provide a welcoming educasignificant new two-year scholarship for tional environment. Here, students expeoutstanding students entering grade 11 rience the support and guidance of caring for the IB Diploma, a two-year program Christian teachers, dedicated to preparing of university-level studies, has been estab- them for life beyond the school doors. lished. Students interested in applying for Our classes start at preschool-grade 12. one of the new scholarships can learn more Excellent academic, athletic, & fine arts on the Aspengrove website. All applicants programs. Serving a diverse student body. are invited to visit the school on February We offer trades programs & hands-on 20 for the inaugural scholarship day. apprenticeships,project based learning,

NEW! Public Washrooms & Mother’s Room

OPENING SOON! Join the Cubs Club at




24  Island Parent Magazine






international program, Grade 7 Leadership Retreat, Grade 11 West Coast Trail Hike, Grade 12 Missions trip, extensive student support program. We welcome the opportunity to take you on a tour of our school, please contact: 495 Beech Avenue Duncan BC V9L 3J8. 250-746-3654. Evergreen. Thirty-two years ago, a small group of parents in Cobble Hill were looking for an alternative learning environment for their children. Ideas were shared, plans were made, and Evergreen Independent School was established. This small community school currently enrolls 96 students. Registrations are being accepted for Junior Kindergarten to Grade 7, as well as for the Evergreen Explorers, a new and tremendously popular Friday morning program for 3-year-olds. There are many unique aspects of Evergreen that attract families. Small class sizes, innovative teaching, and multi-grade classrooms enhance individual learning and create positive socialization across the grade levels. The parents and teachers of Evergreen Independent School are committed to a philosophy that develops the full potential of each child. Visit for more info. International Christian Montessori Academy (ICMA). Inayat Unissa Bergum was born in Nice, France. After obtaining comprehensive Montessori training in Paris, she started the first Montessori school in 1962 in Southern California named the Sophia Montessori of Santa Monica. In 1964, she opened the first Montessori school in Costa Mesa, California known as the Montessori Centre School. Through the years she has trained numerous teachers using Montessori methodologies and opened many Montessori schools throughout California. In 1989, she launched the International Christian Montessori Academy (ICMA) for the expressed purpose of having children learn to appreciate and understand the importance of tolerance of different religions with an attitude of love, harmony and beauty. Recently, she founded the International Christian Montessori Academy in Duncan, BC, whose primary function is to include pre-school and elementary academic and French immersion programs.

Kool & Child is your complete resource store for educational toys and games. We carry a wide assortment of educational games, homework helper workbooks, brain teasers, science kits, chewelry, and much more. Teachers love our Kool School House full of everything they need to outfit their classroom in style, including an amazing selection of stickers. For homeschooling families, we carry grade appropriate resources for the elementary level. Preview some of our products online at or come in and explore our store for a much greater selection. We are always happy to answer questions, please call us at 1-888-390-1775.

Mineral World and the Scratch Patch Come and visit us for a unique and family-friendly experience. Collect gemstones in the Scratch Patch area, browse through our amazing fossils, minerals, jewellery and gifts or book an entertaining and informative educational excursion. Please see our website for more!

Navigate offers international awardwinning blended learning programs at our Comox Valley location that allow students K-12 to foster relationships with their teachers and the broader community while offering the flexibility of learning from home. In addition, Navigate serves more than 4,000 learners throughout BC in our K-9, high school, and adult learning programs. A Navigate education includes a customized student learning plan that meets all provincially mandated learning outcomes and is instructed by BC certified teachers. For more information about the Fine Arts, Robotics, or iClass options available at our school, please visit

St. Joseph’s Elementary School - CHEMAINUS

Nestled in a wooded landscape, St. Joseph’s Catholic Elementary in Chemainus offers faith-enriched education to children from preschool through grade 7. Skilled educators provide a safe and caring environment, and nourish each student academically, physically, spiritually and artistically. St. Joseph’s offers music and band programming, specialist teachers for PE, and K-7 French instruction. On-site preschool and before and after school care is available. St. Joseph’s is an inclusive school, welcoming students of all backgrounds and abilities. Affordable and Extraordinary. Bursary program. Please call 250-246-3191 for more information, or to arrange for a tour of St. Joseph’s school. February 2017  25

Queen Margaret’s School is a welcoming university-preparatory Senior School for girls (Grades 8-12), and offers an enriched co-ed Junior School (Kindergarten-Grade 7) and co-ed Early Childhood Education Program. Located on 27 beautiful acres in the Cowichan Valley, QMS is home to Canada’s only optional on-campus English Equestrian Program where students may ride within their weekly timetable. This program provides skills and theory training for recreational riders and competitive equestrian athletes alike. As a globally-minded community, QMS fosters intellectual curiosity through unique programs that prepare students for university, for higher education, for life. Discover at QMS. Visit Sunrise Waldorf School (SWS). Where children learn and grow on our beautiful rural seven acre campus. SWS offers students an education that is imbued with life and joy. Through movement, connection to nature, the practical arts, and an inspired curriculum, Waldorf students develop a strong sense of imagination, creative and critical thinking skills. Enhanced by Handwork, Woodwork, Music, Strings, Movement, French, Plays, Gardening and Seasonal Fes-

26  Island Parent Magazine

tivals. SWS is located south of Duncan in the Cowichan Valley and attracts families from all over the globe, who have relocated to enroll their children at our Waldorf school. Founded in 1980, SWS offers programs from early childhood through class eight. SWS is the only full member school of the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA) on Vancouver Island. 250-743-7253,

Start your journey at The High School at Vancouver Island University. We are a BC certified independent high school uniquely situated on a university campus. As the only high school in British Columbia—and one of two in Canada—that is directly connected to a university, we expose our students to the multitude of post-secondary programs offered to young adults. Experience small class sizes, individual attention and opportunities for intercultural understanding. Starting The Learning Clinic Nanaimo (TLC). TLC your journey at the High School at VIU is a learning clinic that provides education allows qualified graduates direct admission assessment, planning and support for chil- to Vancouver Island University. Accepting dren and teens identified with dyslexia or a applications for grades 10 to 12. 250-740learning disability. At TLC our professional 6317. team provides youth, parents and schools with the tools, skills and support neces- Vancouver Island University Master of sary for greater academic achievement. A Education in Educational Leadership. The specialized education plan that outlines the M.Ed. in Educational Leadership provides a short and long term academic support pro- program of preparation for aspiring formal gram is created and closely monitored for and informal school leaders. Grounded in each child. Education plans are based on the the rich educational leadership literature psychoeducational assessment report, the supplemented by extensive faculty experneeds identified by the child’s current school tise and experience, the program provides team, the school Individualized Education a balance of research, policy and practice. Plan (IEP), and the needs identified by the Graduates of our program will have demchild’s TLC teacher. 250-591-0702, con- onstrated the knowledge, skills and, titudes of successful leaders. All programs

are offered as cohorts with strong Faculty support. Graduates are fully qualified to pursue doctoral studies. Vancouver Island University (VIU) Master of Education in Special Education. VIU’s M.Ed. in Special Education embodies an innovative approach to the field of Special Education. Grounded in current research and evidence–based practices, our program challenges each educator to critically examine historical and contemporary Special Education policies and approaches to formulate a best practice specific to her/ his own context. Faculty bring their expert knowledge and extensive experiences to guide, support and maximize student learning in each part of the program. All programs are offered as cohorts with strong Faculty support. Graduates are fully qualified to pursue doctoral studies.

British Columbia. The college provides world-class education and premier clinical services in a variety of medical modalities including Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, Western Herbal Medicine, Holistic Nutrition, Doula Training and Integrative Health. PRC’s faculty is comprised of more than 50 leaders in the natural healthcare industry, and students have come from more than 40 countries. In 2016 PRC was named Vancouver Island’s Professional Business of the Year and won the EcoStar Social Impact award. 229-560 Johnson Street. 250-4832119.

Educational Services & Programs

share her findings, hands-on success and expertise, using research-based presentations that clearly show what steps need to be taken to end dyslexia. If you would like Marlene to speak to your group or to you individually, find out when her next free public talk is, or learn more, please visit or call 250-474-6368. Kumon is an after-school math and reading enrichment program that unlocks the potential of children so they can achieve more on their own. Children attend the learning centre once or twice a week where a team of dedicated professionals provide individualized instruction and feedback. Through daily practice and mastery of materials, students increase confidence, improve concentration and develop better study skills. Kumon has 26,000 centres in 49 countries and more than four million students studying worldwide. Visit kumon. ca to learn more or follow us on Facebook at Saanich: 250-4791800; Sidney: 250-896-8879; West Shore: 250-516-2991.

Access Speech & Language. Ending dyslexia is finally possible. Learn how it is now possible to end dyslexia relatively quickly, Pacific Rim College is a globally-recog- affordably and with lasting results thanks nized academic institution of complemen- to advances in neuroscience and technology. tary and integrative medicine located on Award-winning speech language patholo- Mad Science® Vancouver Island offers Vancouver Island in beautiful Victoria, gist Marlene Lewis is donating her time to exciting science programs for schools, com-

Post Secondary



Reserved Seat $12.00 Adult $10.00 Child/Senior $8.00


CONTACT: 250-818-7151

March 11, 2017

2:00 pm & 7:00pm

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"Skating in Colour"

March 11, 2017 - 2:00 pm & 7:00pmMarch 11, 2017 March 12, 2017 - 1:00pm March 12, Juan de Fuca Arena, Colwood BC TICKET PRICES:

Reserved Seat $12.00 Adult $10.00 Child/Senior $8.00

- 2:00 pm & 7:00pm 2017 - 1:00pm Juan de Fuca Arena, Colwood BC

CONTACT: 250-818-7151


Reserved Seat $12.00 Adult $10.00 Child/Senior $8.00

CONTACT: 250-818-7151

February 2017  27

munities and individuals. Our after-school program this year, Spy Academy, explores the science in the work of detectives and spies. In a series of six weekly lessons we immerse children in a hands-on environment of exploration, fun and learning. Children experiment, question, and build a take-home toy to share what they learned with others. Our programs include Birthday Parties & Camps. Check vancouverisland and Book on-line any time. Available in the Victoria area, Duncan, Nanaimo and Comox-Courtenay. Call 1-888-954-6237 for information.

integration of literacy, fine arts and stewardship of our natural world. Our indoor gallery programs are an exploration of art, birds, and BC animals or check out our new outdoor education programs, all guided by an experienced educator. Teachers can also visit The Robert Bateman Centre with their classroom for an unguided tour at a special rate, and every Pro D Day, students can visit the Robert Bateman Centre for free. To book your class trip contact: education@, 250-940-3630 ex Sidney Mineral World’s Education Pro- 302. gram offers earth science education for school and non-school groups. In align- Sylvan Learning’s personal and engaging ment with BC’s New School Curriculum it approach to learning has helped millions provides a balance of hands-on experience of children see success in school over the and information. We offer three programs past 40 years. Our tutoring programs are for you to choose from, with the flexibility individualized and tailored specifically to of adaptations. Our newest Flexible Pro- the needs of each child. The use of technolgram offers individualized earth science or ogy, and our specific approach to motivation archaeology-based lessons. The Rock Cycle helps keep students focused and makes talk has an abundance of hands-on mineral learning fun. When your child just isn’t getand fossil specimens and participants also ting enough out of the classroom you need learn about minerals of BC while collecting someone knowledgeable whom you can samples to take home. Our Earth Processes trust to help guide and engage your child. program covers the connection between Someone with insight and experience. You plate tectonics, earthquakes and tsunamis can count on Sylvan. With four locations on and also involves collecting gems to take Vancouver Island. Call us at 1-800-Educate. home. 250-656-0791. sidneymineralworld@; Total Learning Services (TLS) is a unique tutoring Oak and Orca Bioreservice in Victoria. TLS is gional Forest School is dedicated to improving an outdoor, nature-based quality of life through program at PKOLS and effective clinical reading Mount Douglas Park. programs for children, The program fosters an teens and adults (age of inclusive, caring community in which clients: 5 to 50). The reading process can students learn by doing. Through an be a frustrating struggle for my clients; emergent curriculum, we offer students most times it is affecting their daily lives. the opportunity to connect with plants As a reading specialist, I use strategies that and animals in the temperate rainforest make the reading process fun and easy. and on the beach. Outdoor experiences Achievement testing is done to determine include stories and drama, wood carving the areas of the reading process which are and sculptures, beach art, shelter-building, of the greatest concern. My programs have learning about wild edibles, hiking, and changed the lives of many. Pediatrician active games. This unique program is avail- recommendation. For your free consulable to all students, including those in our tation, contact Brenda Osadchy, B.Ed. Hands-On Home-Learning (DL) program. M.SpEd. 778-440-0997 or totallearningTours are available by request. oakandorca. ca,, 250-383-6619. 1-888-383-6619.


Come experience the inquiry-based education programs at The Robert Bateman Andrea’s Sew Easy Spring Break Sewing Centre. Each one is enriched with the Camps. Something different for your child 28  Island Parent Magazine

to do during Spring Break…A Sewing Camp. Sewing is a skill they will treasure and enjoy for a lifetime. Andrea Bailey has been teaching classes, after school and Saturdays, and camps, Monday to Friday, morning or afternoon, for over 26 years. Children from the age of seven through to teens learn at their own speed in small classes with a maximum of 4 students. Call 250-592-7879 or email Testimonials at Come and see the “All Kids Fashion Show” at the Sewing and Crafts Show, Pearkes Arena, March 11. Introducing REACH!—A new, non-profit organization with exciting performing groups/programs celebrating diversity—of ages, cultures and abilities (including special needs). Centrally located at Saanich Commonwealth Place in Royal Oak. REACH! Children’s Choir (4-12 years), Thursdays 5:30-6:15 p.m. REACH! Performing Company (adults and youth 13 years and up), Thursdays 7:00-8:30 p.m. Awardwinning Artistic Director—Anne-Marie Brimacombe (LRCM, ARCM). For more information please contact West Coast Reach Association, Tel. 250-882-4339, Email: Website: This Is shared resource and information hub. Free event and community directory listings. Created by community for community. Visit Share the good news about what’s happening in your school, service organization, group, family, business or personal project. Brought to you by the Creatively United for the Planet non-profit society. Watch for our free 6th Annual Earth Day Community Festival, April 22nd, at the Royal BC Museum. VIU Canada Learning Bond. If your child was born in 2004 or later and your family receives the National Child Benefit Supplement (for families whose combined household income is approximately $45,000 or less), you are eligible for up to $2,000 of free money for your child’s education after high school. The Canada Learning Bond is a federal grant that will be deposited when you set up a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for your child. It’s free to set up a RESP and you don’t have to contribute any money into the RESP to receive the bond. For information visit or email•

PARTY Directory birthday parties for all ages!

ctoria Gymnastics

2 Great Locations!

Swim bounce , cook golf, create & more!

Henderson Recreation Centre Call 250-370-7200 Oak Bay Recreation Centre Call 250-595-SWIM (7946)

Birthday Parties

HASSLE FREE PARTIES for kids & families

Come Fly With Us!

You provide the space and food… Spa Parties • Rockin’ Pop-star • Spa-Jamma My Pick ‘n’ Mix Party • Neon Lights Dance Party Enchanted Fairy • Princess Party • Magical Mermaids BFF Mini Parties & more

Character Parties 250.590.5568 & DIY ‘Stuff a Pet’ Party Kits





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778-265-6414 February 2017  29


Moving Expecting a Baby Planning a Wedding A Grandparent A New Business/Executive Interested In a New Career



CONTACT WELCOME WAGON TODAY! Victoria & Vancouver Island 1-866-518-7287 Nanaimo 250-756-9794 Or online at:

Emmanuel Preschool over 40 years of nurturing children in our community

Open House!

Saturday, Feb. 25, 9:30-11:00am or contact us for a visit Sept-June Learning through creative play Two licensed, experienced Early Childhood Educators Warm, fun, non-denominational Christian learning environment. 2121 Cedar Hill Cross Road 250.598.0573

30  Island Parent Magazine


hat first month back in Canada, everywhere I looked I saw urban sprawl: forests being replaced by big developments, big malls, and big-box stores. All of it compounding the big headache that is Highway 1. We had spent 14 too-short months living in France. Had it been Paris, I might have welcomed our return trip. But no, it was a small, idyllic village nestled in the Alps. Not a day passed in Thollon-les-Mémises when I did not count my blessings and marvel at the benevolence of BC Public Service to tolerate salary deferral within its ranks. I knew it was a fantasy life too good to last. But when the day came to reclaim our home turf, Langford felt like a mockery of the kind of family-centric living we had gotten used to. Where were the mom-and-pop groceries, the fondue fundraisers, and most importantly, the two-hour lunch breaks? My immediate impulse was to run away. “Let’s buy a house in the Kootenays!” I crowed every morning. This strategy of running away made quick work of disillusionment in my 20s. If a job or a boyfriend got really unpleasant, I moved. But now I am the married mother of two boys, and pulling up the stakes is a whole lot more complicated. And while there are plenty of domestic situations worthy of walking away from, life in a perfectly suitable house with a perfectly suitable car and a couple of pretty swell jobs does not fall into that category. After recovering from an especially rough spell of insomnia, I realized it was not the situation that was the problem. It was ME. I needed to change my outlook—change how I was doing things, not what I was doing. In order to clear the way for my new perspective, I needed to dismiss what was draining me. I had slipped back into my pre-France routine, flying from one commitment to the next, only now with an additional early-morning curveball: My first-grader has to be on the bus by 7:17 every morning! As most working moms will attest, the quietest times of my day were spent at the office. Everything else felt like a mad dash to get uncooperative crewmates to board the ship to the next destination. Sure my house was a disaster, but the clutter was creeping into my schedule as well. I decided to take a page from the French book of parenting: less is more. I cut out the kids’ taekwondo classes and visits to Strong Start (an infrequent practice motivated only by guilt that my youngest isn’t getting half the learning opportunities that his brother had). Meals would be less elaborate and the bathrooms more organic, shall we say. While I was at it, I appropriated some of the French rules around the family sphere: No house guests unless they are related to you—or really, really special—and then only for coffee. Getting clear means saying “no” to things that don’t align with my priorities. No more social obligations, just social engagements —ones that lift my spirit. It also means

being receptive to new experiences and encounters, and spending less time chasing down the people I “should� connect with, and allowing things to fall into place, rather than constantly trying to chase them down. Try it. You’ll be surprised how often people enter your life at precisely the time they are most helpful to you. Getting clear means choosing how I want to live my life. I would slow down and spend whatever time we could outdoors, ideally with my family. Just like in the Alps. In fact, our family has devoted Sundays to doing just that.


Kate Wiley Turns out this shift inside has truly altered what’s outside. Finding greater clarity has not only made Langford a more palatable place to call home, it has ignited in me an entrepreneurial spark—an idea for a business that revolves around helping families like mine slow down. It will help parents to unplug and re-evaluate priorities. Using our forests as a stomping ground, I aim to


Pick up your copy of Island Parent at any Serious Coffee CafÊ 5PÜOEPOFOFBSZPVHPUPTFSJPVTDPòFFDPN

They’ll be at university sooner than you think. Make sure your family knows about the Canada Learning Bond

remind families to value the wild and each other. Of course, this business will be a partnership—a partnership between me, my husband, and our kids. Because ultimately, every good business owner must practice what she preaches.

Kate Wiley lives in Langford, works downtown, and shuttles her kids everywhere in between. She longs for the simpler life she left behind in France, but is very pleased not to be living in her native USA at this juncture in American politics.


If your child was born in 2004 or later and your family income is less than $45,000/year, you are eligible for up to $2,000 of free money for your child’s education after high school. For more information visit

February 2017  31

FAMILY Calendar

For calendar updates throughout the month visit

F E B R UA RY Our Generous Sponsors




Raising Children in a Digital World at Victoria Conference Centre. Join developmental psychologist and international speaker Dr. Gordon Neufeld as he looks at the digital revolution and continues to guide teachers and parents to help their children become all they are meant to be. 7-9pm. $20/person. For more information, visit




Kids Mega Sale at Pearkes Arena. Gently used baby and children’s clothing, toys, equipment and maternity. 9:30am-12:30pm. 3100 Tillicum Rd. Email KidsMegaSale. Horth Hill Highlights at Horth Hill Regional Park. Check out this delightful park at the tip of the Saanich Peninsula. Along with a CRD Regional Parks naturalist, discover the plants at your feet, the birds over your head and great views from the top. Wear sturdy hiking shoes. Meet at the information kiosk in the parking lot of Tatlow Rd at 1pm. 8+ years. BC Transit #70 or #72. 250-478-3344.




Emergency Preparedness Workshop at Victoria City Hall Antechamber. Learn about the hazards that can affect Victoria, what to include in your emergency kits, what you can do to protect your home from an earthquake, and how to reunite with your loved ones after a disaster. Free. 1-3pm. Register at emvic@, or call 250-920-3373.

32  Island Parent Magazine




hooting and more. Meet at the grassy area adjacent to the picnic shelter in the Filter Beds parking lot off Beaver Lake Rd at 10:30am. All ages. BC Transit #70 or #75. 250-478-3344.

Giant Jenga at Brentwood Teen Lounge. Bring some friends and steady hands for the most ultimate giant Jenga competition. 6-8pm. 1233 Clarke Rd. 250-656-7271. MONDAY






Family Day Fun at Panorama Recreation. Celebrate Family Day with free admission to swimming, skating, Family Fun Hike at Thetis Lake Regional Park. Enjoy weight room and fitness classes. Skate: 1-2:20pm; a walk in the park with your family to celebrate Swim: 1:30-3pm. 1885 Forest Park Dr. 250-656-7271. Family Day weekend. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist and discover the beauty of this wooded parkland. Bring a snack and water, and wear sturdy Family Arts Festival at Cedar Hill Recreation. This footwear. Meet at the main parking lot at Thetis Lake fun-filled family event is a celebration of imaginaoff Six Mile Rd at 10am. 5+ years. 250-478-3344. tion, creativity and discovery. Kids of all ages will enjoy a wide variety of activities led by Arts Centre staff and guests from Greater Victoria’s arts comSATURDAY TH TO munity. Explore the world of visual arts, dance, MONDAY TH music and theatre through hands-on stations and performances. 11am-3pm. Sidney Family Days in Downtown Sidney. The theme this year is agriculture and Robin Sather, TUESDAY TH Canada’s only LEGO professional, will build a 6' tractor. On Saturday at 11am, the Sidney Museum Cupid’s Cuties at Kindergym at Greenglade Comwill hand out Lego Brick Festival scavenger hunt munity Centre. Bring your little one for a morning maps. Explore Sidney in search of exciting Lego of fun at Kindergym. Make a card for the special displays. 10am-4pm daily. someone. Special treats. 9:30-11:30am. 1885 Forest Park Dr. 250-656-7271.







Love in the Park at Elk/Beaver Lake Regional Park. Come discover what animals are breeding in the park. Participate in family fun and all ageappropriate activities related to tree frogs singing, eagles cart-wheeling, hummingbirds dancing, owls




Giggles and Wiggles at Nellie McClung Branch Library. Little listeners with extra energy will enjoy action-filled stories, songs and rhymes followed by free play and stations. For young children and their


families; children under 3 must be accompanied MONDAY TH by an adult. 10:30-11am drop in; space is limited. For more information, visit or call 250-940- Community Connections for Parents: Island GVPL (4875). Health Nurse at Central Branch Library. Come after Baby Time to learn about baby care and other child FRIDAY TH development topics. Drop in. 11-11:30am. Visit or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) for more information. Lego at the Library at Bruce Hutchison Branch Library. Listen to stories and have fun with the Stories on Fern The Victoria Storytellers Guild wellibrary’s Lego. 3:30-4:30pm. To register, visit gvpl. comes you to hear and tell stories. Tea and goodies. ca or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Doors open at 7:15pm, stories start at 7:30pm. 1831 Fern St (park on Begbie). $5; $3/students. victoriSATURDAY TH



Social Justice Youth Conference at Central Middle School. Meet other youth interested in making positive change in the world, gain concrete skills for taking action or further learning in social justice. Conference is designed, organized and facilitated by youth. For all middle school and high school students. 10am-4pm. $10/person. HeadWay Health Fair at Mary Winspear Centre. Food, fitness and fun for the whole family. Healthy eating samples and seminars, sports equipment fitting and fitness demos, educational speaker Dr. Shelina Babul. 1-4pm. Admission by donation. For more information, visit ARTrageous Night at Greenglade Teen Lounge. Let your creativity fly at teen lounge. 6-8pm. 2151 Lannon Way. 250-656-7271.

Tillicum LEGO Mania Challenge Registration Begins at Tillicum Centre. The theme this year is Happy 150th Birthday Canada. Over 100 contestants, ages 5-14 years will be showcasing their LEGO masterpieces for a chance to Win LEGO prizes. Prizes will be awarded for the top three entries for ages 5-8 years and 9-14 years on Sunday, March 26 at 2pm.




Community Connections for Parents: Island Health Nurse at Juan de Fuca Branch Library. See MON 20 for details. Drop in. 11-11:30am. Visit or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) for more information.




Emergency Preparedness Workshop at Victoria City Hall Antechamber. See TUES 7 for details. Free. 7-9pm. Register at, or call 250-920-3373.




4th Annual Wigs for Kids Cut-a-thon at Lizzy Lee and Me Salon. Pony tails snipped at the cut-a-thon will be collected to be used for custom fitted wigs for patients of BC Children’s Hospital. Come with clean, dry hair, not braided. Donated money goes to needy families to help pay for wigs, as well as assist them through their child’s treatment. Hair donation package (includes consultation, wash and restyle, plus keepsake photo) $49.99/adult; $39.99 child 14 and under. 10am-6pm. 3655 Shelbourne St. Call 250-590-5568 to book an appointment (walk-ins welcome).

Giggles and Wiggles at Juan de Fuca Branch Library. See THURS 16 for details. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be Under the Sea Skate at Panorama Recreation. It’s accompanied by an adult. 10:30-11am drop in; space a celebration ‘Under the Sea’. Costumes providing is limited. For more information, visit or call Open House at St. Margaret’s School. Come see the campus in action. Interested families are invited to all sorts of oceanic costumes as well as treats for 250-940-GVPL (4875). the kids. Bring a non-perishable item for the Sidney drop in to take a student-led tour, meet with faculty Food Bank and have your name entered to win all THURSDAY RD and staff, and discover why girls thrive here. Girls sorts of prizes. 1-2:20pm. 1885 Forest Park Dr. 250may register to shadow a student and spend the 656-7271. Community Connections for Parents: Island day among their peers. RSVP required. 9-11am or Health Nurse at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. 1-3pm. 1080 Lucas Ave. 250-470-7171. See MON 20 for details. Drop in. Noon-12:30pm. Visit or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) .





February 2017  33



Lego at the Library at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. See FRI 17 for details. 11am-noon. To register, visit or call 250-940-GVPL (4875).


An Innovative Place for Innovative Learners

Pro-D Day Skate and Swim at Panorama Recreation. Come for a fun-filled skate or swim. Skate: 1-2:20pm; Swim: 1-3pm. $2. 1885 Forest Park Dr. 250-656-7271.

Hands-on, creative and personalized learning.

#16 Valleyview Centre 1400 Cowichan Bay Road, Cobble Hill

The Community Learning Centre offers a “blended-schooling” experience for students 6 to 16. Join us for weekly Project-Based Learning, Home Economics, Science, Math, English, History, Farm School and more! 250-929-5555


INDIVIDUALIZED PROGRAMS Pre-K TO Gr.8 Montessori education has at its core the understanding that all children possess unique interests and insights, and that they learn in individual and distinct ways. Book a visit to find out how this understanding translates to the classrooms at Westmont ...

Ensure a bright future!

Independence. Flexibility. Reward. 

Books and Ballerinas at Oak Bay Branch Library. This storytime will make your heart dance. Join real-life ballerinas from the Victoria Academy of Ballet for a story and craft, followed by a photo op (bring your own camera). For ages 5-8. 1:30-2:15pm. Register at or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) for more information. Acting Out! All Over the World at Juan de Fuca Branch Library. Express your creativity through improv, theatrical silliness, puppets, costumes and music in this lively acting program with Jennifer Callioux. For ages 8-12. 2-3pm. Register at or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) for more information. Soil Superstars at Esquimalt Branch Library. Unearth the ways soil is part of the food we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the houses we live in. Hang out with worm friends and learn about the important work they do making healthy soil. Presented by the Compost Education Centre. For ages 6-9. 2-3pm. Register at or call 940-GVPL (4875) for more information.




Under the Bird Tree at Francis/King Regional Park. Birds are fun for little ones—especially when they are by a winter bird feeder. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist and look for our fine feathered friends, make a bird seed craft, and enjoy a short exploration in the woods. 10-11:30am. 7 years and under. There is no fee for this program, but you must pre-register as space is limited. Call to register by February 23. 250-478-3344. Mandarin Seeds at Nellie McClung Branch Library. Enjoy a fun and interactive storytime and craft in Mandarin. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be accompanied by an adult. 10:30-11:15am. Register at or call 250-940GVPL (4875) for more information.


A family first career. For career info, contact: Victoria, BC RO #20

34  Island Parent Magazine



Outstanding Owls at Swan Lake Nature House. Who glides silently, can turn their head almost completely around and can cough-up a wicked hairball? Whowho-who? Drop in any time from noon to 3pm and explore the wonderful world of owls through games,

stories, crafts and hands-on exploration. Admission complete schedule of drop-in programs, visit by donation. For more information, call 250-479- or call 250-940-GVPL (4875) for more information. 0211, or visit 3873 Swan Lake Rd. Good Morning Storytime at Sidney/North Saanich What’s That Evergeen at Devonian Regional Park. Branch Library. Bring your littlest ones to the library Come take a closer look at the survival strategies for stories, songs, rhymes and movement. Ages 0-5. of our local evergreen plants. With a CRD Regional Thursdays 10:15-11am until March 2. 250-656-0944. Parks naturalist, you’ll learn common species, what keeps these plants green year-round, and sip some FAMILIES evergreen tea. Meet at the information kiosk in the parking lot off William Head Rd at 1pm. 5+ years. BC Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support CirTransit #54 or #55. 250-478-3344. cles in Victoria. Every second Tuesday morning from 9:30-11:30am or every second Wednesday evening from 6:30-8:30pm. A safe supportive place to meet others in a similar situation and to share information and resources. Call 250-384-8042 for more information, or visit Province-wide toll free information and support line at 1-855-474-9777 or email

household supplies. Information available for local resources, advocacy and counselling support. The Y Young Moms Program also runs groups such as Mother Goose, Nobody’s Perfect, and Food Skills for Families. Thursdays 10am-noon. 250-382-1004. Monthly Dyslexia Information Sessions. Ending dyslexia is now possible. Learn about the latest developments in neuroscience and programs to end dyslexia quickly and with lasting results. Free information sessions held monthly with Marlene Lewis, award-winning registered speech pathologist. Please phone 250-474-6368 for details, or visit


THIS IS shared resource and information hub. Free event and community directory listings. Created by community for community. Visit Share the good news BABIES, TODDLERS & PRESCHOOL about what’s happening in your school, service Young Parent Drop-In at the Downtown Y. Free organization, group, family, business or personal Baby Times, Toddler Time & Family Storytime breakfast and drop-in for young parents in the project. Brought to you by the Creatively United for at the Greater Victoria Public Library. Parents and community. Socialize with other young parents, the Planet non-profit society. Watch for the free 6th caregivers are welcome and encouraged to partici- enjoy a kids’ craft, let your little one explore the Annual Earth Day Community Festival, April 22nd, pate with their children. Drop in; space is limited. fully-equiped playroom, or have a look in the at the Royal BC Museum.• Admission is on a first-come, first-served basis. For a ‘free store’ for gently used children’s items and

NEW Extended Hours!

Full Time Spots

A nature-inspired program where children can

• Wonder • Imagine • Explore and Learn… through Play!

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February 3 - March 12 12 6 Great Films 5 Fun Weeks 1 Low Price

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See one, see them all, or buy an Annual Pass and enjoy IMAX® all year long!

Films available in 2D & 3D



IMAX® is a registered trademark of IMAX Corporation.

February 2017  35


Family Law


Mediator and Arbitrator


Visit for these and other events and resources for families from Cowichan Valley north to Campbell River and west to Tofino

Over 32 years as a family law lawyer “A better way to get things done” William Murphy-Dyson, B.A., LL.B. BARRISTER AND SOLICITOR

3rd Floor, Burnes House 26 Bastion Square, Victoria 250-388-4457

The Victoria School for Ideal Education

• Small class sizes

Nanaimo Community Home Learners Monthly Meet-up at Oliver Woods Community Centre. Resource library, gym time, parent support, special events throughout the year. 1-4pm. $5/drop-in fee per family or $20 year-long membership.



Dad’s Night Out Skate Night at Oceanside Place Arena. Dads, bring the kids out and enjoy a free skate together on the pond. 6:30-7:30pm. Sponsored by Building Learning Together. 250-248-3252.

• BC curriculum K – Gr. 8 2820 Belmont Avenue


250-383-6654 A few spaces still available

Swing Into Spring Gymnastics Camp Mornings/Afternoons Full Days/Half Days

March 27–31

For more information call 250-479-6424

Falcon Gymnastics presents:

Swing Into Spring Gymnastics Camp 2017 Ages 51⁄2–14 years ~ 9am–4pm, 9am–12pm or 1–4pm We also have: Best Birthday Parties in town! Best gymnastics and most affordable classes!

208 – 721 Vanalman Ave, Victoria, BC V8Z 3B6  250-479-6424 36  Island Parent Magazine


Glow in the Dark Skate at Frank Crane Arena. Skate in the atmosphere of dimmed lighting and special effects. 6:30-8pm.

• Nature based learning




• Daily meditation





BC Provincial Family Day Swim and Skate at Ravensong Aquatic Centre and Oceanside Place Arena. Free admission courtesy of CUPE 401, Canadian Union of Public Employees. Swim: 10am-2pm; Skate: 1-5pm. 250-752-5014 or 250-248-3252. Family Day Skate at Cowichan Arena, Duncan. Bring the whole family and enjoy sports activities in the gym. Bundle up, lace up, and get out for a spin on the ice. Noon-3pm. 250-748-7529. Family Day of Fun at Nanaimo Aquatic Centre. Celebrate family with lots of family-oriented games and activities. 1-3pm. 250-756-5200.




Teen Disco Skate at Oceanside Arena. Let DJ Allgood and flashing disco lights take you back in time. Disco costumes welcome. 7:15-8:45pm. Free admission and skate rentals. 250-248-3252.




Winter Carnival Skate at Oceanside Place Arena. Brighten the winter days with a fun carnival on ice. Participate in carnival games and win tickets to bid on prizes at the end of the skate session. 2-3:30pm. 250-248-3252.


ST. JOSEPH’S Elementary School

FOR 2017



Starlight Skate at Nanaimo Ice Centre. An opportunity to come out and enjoy the soft light “stars” and passive LED glow lights. This is a great night out for families after dinner. Regular admission rates. 7-9pm. 250-756-5200.

St. Joseph’s TRADITIONAL VALUES Elementary School - CHEMAINUS




PRESCHOOL Family Storytime at Cowichan Library, Duncan. Bring the whole family for stories, songs, rhymes and fun. For ages 0-5. Tuesdays 10:30-11:30am. 2687 James St.

FAMILY Drop-In Science Studio at NS3 Science Studio. Children can explore the many features of the Science Studio including KEVA blocks, marble wall, air field, wind tunnel, and a variety of discovery boxes. $4/child; adults free. Thursdays and Saturdays 10amnoon. Schedule subject to change, so please check for most current schedule. 4355 Jingle Pot Rd. 778-971-6893. Family Pool Party at Beban Pool. End the hard work week with a party at the pool. Fridays 7-9pm until December 9. 250-756-5200. Lions Free Skate at Frank Crane Arena. Every Sunday noon-1:30pm. 250-756-5200. Parksville Lions and Save-On-Foods Family Skate at Oceanside Place Arena. This popular session is back. Pond hockey is not available. Children must be accompanied by and adult 19+ years. Free. February 5, 12, 19, and 26. 12:15-1:45pm. 250-248-3252.•

Kool Toys & Teaching Tools

Unplugged Play

Toys, games and puzzles for all ages #102 – 2517 Bowen Road Nanaimo  250.585.1778 February 2017  37

Bee-Friendly Gardens


ome people think nature is “out there,” in a national park or other designated wilderness area. But bees, our most important pollinators, love to live in urban settings where there are short flight paths, and a variety of different plants and flowers to sample. In fact, bees are more likely to thrive in your backyard, community or patio garden, and on mixed farms than on acres devoted to single crops. We’ve all heard about the mysterious global disappearance of honeybees. Other bee species are also declining, mainly because of habitat loss. You can make a big difference just by creating a bee-friendly space in your garden. (And it’s not hard— bees are easy to please!)

insects in your garden means they are less likely to move into your house. You’ll triple the yield of fruit and veggies in your garden—no more lumpy strawberries or shrunken squash. Even what seems like a small contribution—just a tiny flower pot or patch—can provide valuable pollinator habitat.

Attract Bees to Your Backyard or Garden:

Build a Bee House. Canada is home to hundreds of bee species of all sizes. The smallest is the size of the head of a pin. Some live below ground, some above. Every single species is beneficial to plants. About the size of houseflies, Blue Orchard bees (Osmia lignaria aka “mason bees”) Create a Welcome Place for Bees are so named because they create rows of All creatures that eat plants (including cells in their nests divided with walls of humans) depend on pollinators. clay. A single female will visit as many as Seventy-five per cent of the foods we 17 flowers per minute. eat—fruits, nuts, vegetables, and herbs— • House walls: an empty milk carton need pollinators to reproduce. (waterproof) with the spout cut off—leave Creating hospitable homes for beneficial the bottom intact—or a box about that size made of wood scraps (not cedar).

• Paint a wooden house a bright colour with exterior zero- or low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paint. At first, the bees will fly around taking mental “snapshots” of their potential new home, but they’ll soon learn to make a bee-line to their new abode. If you plan to make more than one bee house, be sure they’re different colours. • Fill the box with layered stacks of brown paper nest tubes, which you can buy at a garden store. Cut the tubes to six inches (15.75 cm) long, closing the end with tape or a staple, or fold them in half. Commercial nest tubes are 5/16 of an inch (.79 cm) in diameter, the exact size of an HB pencil. Make your own by rolling a piece of brown paper around a pencil, then pinch off the end and seal it with tape. • Hang the house somewhere out of the rain, facing south or east, at eye level, once the temperature outside has warmed to 1214º C (54-57º F). • Dig down below your garden soil adjacent to your bee house until you expose the clay layer, or keep a bowl of moist clay near your bee house for the masons to use as construction material. • It may take a full season for the bees to find your house. If you don’t have any luck attracting locals, you can also purchase


38  Island Parent Magazine

Serving the Families of Vancouver Island for Over 23 Years The Kiddies Store

Thule Urban Glide Thule Urban Glide is an all-round sports stroller with a sleek and lightweight design making it perfect for urban mobility or jogging on your favourite path. Finlayson St. Larch St.

s St.

3045–C Douglas St., Victoria, BC V8T 4N2 250-386-2229


mason bees from a garden store or local bee keeper. Provide Nutritious Bee Food. Bees eat two things: nectar (loaded with sugar, it’s a bee’s main source of energy) and pollen (which provides proteins and fats). • Choose a variety of plants that flower at different times so there’s always a snack available for when bees are out and about. (Rule: native plants attract native bees and exotic plants attract honeybees.) • Flowers bred to please the human eye (for things like size and complexity) are sometimes sterile and of little use to pollinators. Native plants or heirloom varieties are best. • Bees have good colour vision—that’s why flowers are so showy! They especially like blue, purple, violet, white and yellow. Plant flowers of a single species in clumps about four feet in diameter instead of in scatterings so bees are more likely to find them. • Bee species all have different tongue lengths—adaptations to different flowers, so a variety of flower shapes will benefit a diversity of bees. These plants, organized by when they bloom, are just a few of the species that attract bees: Early: blueberry, cotoneaster, crabapple, cranberry, crocus, foxglove, heliotrope, hazelnut, heather, primrose, willow. Mid-season: blackberry, cat mint, catnip, chives, dahlia, hyssop, lavender, raspberry, sunflower, yarrow. Late: aster (perennial), beggar’s tricks, borage, coneflower, cosmos, goldenrod, pumpkin, sedum, squash.

Entrance off Larch St.


O’Brien School of Irish Dance

Make a Bee Bath

Bees and other beneficial insects—ladybugs, butterflies and predatory wasps—all need fresh water to drink but most can’t land in a conventional bird bath without crashing. “They’re like tanks with wings,” says bee master Brian Campbell. “They need islands in the water to touch down on.” • Line a shallow bowl or plate with rocks. • Add water, but leave the rocks as dry islands to serve as landing pads. • Place the bath at the ground level in your garden. (Put it near “problem plants” — those that get aphids, for example — and the beneficial insects that come to drink will look after them.) • Refresh the water daily, adding just enough to evaporate by day’s end. Reprinted with permission from the David Suzuki Foundation. For more green-living tips, visit

Cadboro Bay, Esquimalt, Downtown Victoria and Duncan Recreational, performance and competitive classes Dance, dance wherever you may be….

February 2017  39

Offering Ballet, Tap & Jazz Register Today!

2758 Peatt Road  778-265-5955 or 250-818-9225

Every home should have one... We offer a permanent, easy, fast, WAY OUT of a second or third storey building in an event of an emergency by installing a built-in escape/rescue ladder.

What’s your way out? Phone: 250 595 6081

St. Joseph’s Catholic School Daycare/Preschool to Grade Seven

Please join us for our Open House on Wednesday, February 8th, 4–6pm We are accepting Kindergarten and Grades 1–7 registration for the 2017/2018 school year A Catholic, respectful learning environment where children learn to love and love to learn! Outstanding academic preparation!

For additional information please contact:

St. Joseph’s School  757 W. Burnside Road  250-479-1232 Registration forms are available at

40  Island Parent Magazine

Let Kids Be Kids “W

e’re looking for pajamas for our nine-month-old,” I tell the sales assistant. My then four-year-old daughter is holding my hand, waiting for the clerk’s reply. “For boy or a girl?” The question is inevitable in a clothing store. “Both” I say, referring to the pajamas we want to see. After assessing the assortment, we leave the store with a pair of dinosaur pajamas for the baby, moments later returning for a set in my four-year-old’s size because she can’t bear not to have a pair of her own. My daughter, now five, and has become accustomed to phrases such as “marketed for boys” and “marketed for girls,” alongside our mantra that “all colors, all animals, all toys are for everyone, whoever thinks that they are fun.” We present her with a few choices for T-shirts, shoes and the like, and let her know the target market (she can read the words “boy” and “girl” now anyway). Sometimes she falls in love with the shiny, sequined stars, and sometimes dinosaurs or a mean Jolly Roger. “Aargh,” she booms, chest puffed. As parents, we would love for our kids to be able to make their own decisions—including colours, toys, interests, and friends—without thinking that their choices are wrong. Change, although currently on the side of the gender expansive, happens slowly. The inertia of the clothing and toy industries, the ease of slipping our children into recognized norms, our communal habits of language, our expectation to be able to determine gender on first sight, these all contribute to the traditional binary, the problems faced by some, and the lack of opportunity faced by many as a result. The problem with the division is that it creates limitations and imposes unnecessary restrictions on personality, character and career development. That’s not to criticize the feminine female or the masculine male, as long as they are that way through choice

and not cultural coercion. We should all be able to make our own choices and to celebrate individual character. So when the sales assistant asked “For a boy or a girl?,” in a shop where clothes or toys are so bold in their gender statements, what do you do? Our children are, after all, watching us to see what we do and to hear what we say. Our words and actions have the power to affirm the gender distinctions

Aileen Fisher of the clothing industry, the industry that gives crocodiles to boys and dancers to girls, or to challenge it. For kids to understand that they should not be limited due to their gender, there are several turns of phrases that we can adopt in our general conversation. Here are three: 1. “Colours belong to everyone.” If your child chooses on a day to not wear any strong gender-signifier, their gender might be mistaken. It’s good to know in advance if you’re okay with this, otherwise they could feel like they have done something wrong. 2. Use inclusive vocabulary for professions, for example: firefighter; worker; tradesperson. Make sure that both male and female children know that these professions include both male and female employees. 3. Avoid statements that are easily heard as exclusive. For example, use “these kids are so energetic” rather than “boys are so energetic.” The latter can send a message to a bystanding girl that for reason of her gender she is not expected to be energetic, and to the bystanding boy that he needs to show he’s energetic or people might think that he is not a “real” boy. Kudos to the sales assistant who helped us find the dinosaur pajamas—and who had no objection to putting preference before gender.




Middle: 100-808 Douglas Street


Matinees for KIDS! Saturdays & Sundays All Seats 4.75 $

FEB 4 & 5 – 1:00 PM


FEB 11 & 12 – 12:30 PM


FEB 18 & 19 – 12:45 PM


FEB 25 & 26 – 12:30 PM

  QUEEN OF KATWE .com Student Union Building, UVIC | 250-721-8365

Kids’ Dentist

Dr. Anita Gadzinska-Myers

is a Board Certified Specialist in Pediatric Dentistry and has a Fellowship in Special Needs Dentistry for children • Accepting new patients now (infants to teenagers) • Referral not needed • Member of Cleft Lip and Palate Team

Special Services:

short wait list • intravenous sedation • hospital dentistry • nitrous oxide Aileen Fisher teaches senior school math, is currently on leave to be full time parent to their two children and is often seen riding them around on their bike between school, playpark, forest, beach, coffee shop.

Victoria Pediatric Dental Centre 206–1830 Oak Bay Ave

250-383-2133 February 2017  41

Food Allergy vs. Food Intolerance

soy-based formula will prevent your child from developing an allergy.

Should I wait to offer common food allergens to my baby for the first time? It isn’t recommended that you delay introducing a food beyond six months of age to try to prevent an allergy. This applies even to children who are considered at high What foods are common allergens? risk of developing an allergy (who have a Any food can trigger an allergic reaction, parent or sibling with an allergic condibut the most common are: peanuts, tree nuts, tion). However, once you offer these foods eggs, shellfish, fish, milk, soy, and wheat. to your child, it’s important to continue to offer them on a regular basis. If you have Are there any foods I should avoid while concerns, speak to your health care provider. breastfeeding to prevent my child from getting allergies? How will I know if my child has a food You don’t need to avoid milk, egg, peanut allergy? or other foods while breastfeeding. There Most often, your child will have to eat a is no evidence that avoiding certain foods food more than once before you know he’s will prevent allergy in your child. allergic. For example, the first time your child is exposed to nuts, there will probably be no Is there a particular formula I should use reaction. If he develops an allergy to nuts, to prevent allergies? the next exposure could be more serious. If breastfeeding is not an option or if you choose not to breastfeed, use a store-bought What are the signs of an allergic reaciron-fortified infant formula for the first tion to food? nine to 12 months. The formula should be An allergic reaction can affect many difcow’s milk-based. There is no evidence that ferent body parts. Symptoms can include:

What is the difference and can I prevent them? What is an allergy? An allergy happens when a person’s immune system treats a substance (allergen) like an inappropriate invader. The body will try to protect itself by releasing a chemical into the body called histamine. This chemical is what causes the symptoms that are unpleasant or even dangerous. The reaction can start very suddenly, even after being exposed to a small amount of the allergen. Allergens can get into the body in different ways. They can be: inhaled (such as dust or pollen), ingested as food (some common ones are nuts, eggs or shellfish), ingested as medication (such as penicillin), injected by an insect sting (like a bee or wasp venom), or absorbed through the skin (such as poison ivy).

42  Island Parent Magazine

itchy mouth and throat when eating certain foods, hives (raised red, itchy bumps on the skin), stomach trouble (diarrhea, cramps, nausea, vomiting), swelling of the face or tongue, or trouble breathing. What is anaphylaxis? Allergic reactions can be very serious, even life-threatening. In rare cases, a child may have a rapid and severe reaction to an allergen. This is called anaphylactic shock or anaphylaxis. It can happen within minutes or up to two hours of being exposed to an allergen. What are the symptoms of anaphylaxis? A severe allergic reaction can cause: difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, throat, lips, and tongue (in cases of food allergies), rapid drop in blood pressure, dizziness, unconsciousness, hives, tightness of the throat, hoarse voice, and lightheadedness. If any of these happen to your child, go the nearest emergency department or call 911 immediately. Do children outgrow food allergies? Many children outgrow food allergies, especially if the allergy started before age

three. Allergies to milk, for example, will usually go away. However, some allergies, like those to nuts and fish, probably won’t go away.

If your child is lactose intolerant, you can give her the calcium she needs by offering lactose-free or lactose-reduced milk. While none of these items will provide enough calcium on their own, it’s also What is food intolerance? healthy to offer: fortified soy milk, yogurt, Food intolerance is different from an al- canned salmon and sardines with edible lergy. It is not caused by an immune reaction. bones, oranges or fortified orange juice, Food intolerance will cause discomfort but broccoli, almonds, and pinto beans. Many it’s not dangerous to your child. of these foods do not provide enough vitamin D. Talk to your doctor about whether How can I tell if my child has food in- a supplement of vitamin D would be right tolerance? for your child. Your child may experience bloating, loose stools, gas or other symptoms after eating When should I call the doctor? a specific food. Even though this reaction It is hard to diagnose food allergies. If is not dangerous, if it causes your child your child has a reaction to a food, you discomfort you might want to avoid those will need to see your doctor. Your doctor foods in the future. will refer you to an allergist for the right testing. If the allergy is confirmed, your What is lactose intolerance? doctor may prescribe a medication (for Lactose intolerance happens when the example, an EpiPen or Allerject), a needle body doesn’t produce enough of the enzyme that will protect your child right away if he lactase to fully break down the sugar (lac- is exposed to the allergen. tose) found in most dairy products. It is rare in young children and usually only develops after three years of age. While some young Reprinted with permission from Canadian children adjust to the lack of this enzyme, Paediatric Society. For more information, visit some will have problems for life.

February 2017  43

Community Board Making our Community a Better Place to Live

1Up Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Child Care Resource & Referral Kaleidoscope Theatre Phoenix Theatre Royal BC Museum Silver Threads Service Victoria Conservatory of Music Enquire about non-profit brochure or magazine distribution in Greater Victoria: 44  Island Parent Magazine

Keeping It Slow


aking dinner in a slow cooker is great way to get kids started with cooking on their own. It doesn’t require any technically difficult cooking skills. No frying, boiling or baking, simply layer everything in the slow cooker and you’ve made dinner! I’ll admit that slow cookers aren’t perfect for all kinds of meals. However, they are particularly good at cooking the following foods: • Soups, stews or anything that needs to Cooking simmer for a long time With Kids • Meals that traditionally cook on low for a long time, such as baked beans, pulled pork and pot roast • Casseroles and other baked dishes such as lasagna, shepherd’s pie and baked eggs • Moist baked dishes such as brownies, cornbread and crumbles • Things that need to be steamed such as British-style puddings • Fondues, both cheese and chocolate, can be made in a slow cooker

Emillie Parrish

It is possible to convert your favourite recipes to be made in the slow cooker, however, there are some basic rules to follow: • Liquid won’t boil off in a slow cooker, so be sure that you don’t have any extra liquids. • While you don’t have to pre-cook vegetables, it’s often a good idea to pre-fry ingredients such as onions, garlic and mushrooms to improve the flavour. • The flavours will all blend together, so if you want to add a fresh flavour, add it as a garnish. • Don’t check on the food; lifting the lid will release the heat and cause your food to take longer to cook. • To avoid overcooking, usually ingredients such as pasta, rice and chopped greens are added only for the final hour of cooking.

Conventional Recipe 15 – 30 minutes 45 minutes – 1 hour 1 – 3 hours

Cooking on Low

4 – 6 hours 5 – 7 hours 8 – 10 hours

Cooking on High

1 – 2 hours 2 – 3 hours 4 – 6 hours

Here are two kid-simple slow cooker recipes. If you don’t have a slow cooker, don’t despair, I’ve included suggestions for conventional cooking alternatives.

Carrot and Almond Soup

This recipe is as simple as you can get. It is perfect for even the youngest cooks to help prepare. The vegetables can be coarsely chopped since they are going to be pureed at the end. The soup makes a perfect meal when served with a slice of bread and some cheese. 10 cups water 3 chopped onions 12 chopped carrots 4 cloves of garlic 1⁄2 cup dried red lentils 2 Tbsp bullion powder 1 bunch each of parsley and cilantro 1 cup ground almond Roughly chop the vegetables. Place water, onions, carrots, garlic, lentils, bullion and washed stems of parsley and cilantro into the slow cooker. Reserve the parsley and cilantro leaves for garnishing. Cook on low for 6–7 hours or on high for 3–4 hours (or

simmer on the stove for 45 minutes). When it is finished cooking, remove herbs and puree until smooth. Stir in ground almonds. Depending on the saltiness of your bullion, you may need to add more salt. Serve with a garnish of parsley and cilantro leaves.


This is a variation on a lasagna that uses potatoes instead of noodles. It works particularly well in the slow cooker since the potatoes can handle over-cooking. Everyone in our family loves this dish. Thinly slicing potatoes is the only tricky step. Kids of all ages can help with grating the cheese and making the layers.

30 oz (882g) tomato sauce 2 lbs of potatoes 3 cups of grated mozzarella Salt and pepper Optional: cooked vegetables (mushrooms, peppers, spinach, zucchini) Thinly slice potatoes, like you would for scalloped potatoes. Grate mozzarella. Finely dice, then cook any additional vegetables that you might want to use. Drain the vegetables of any excess liquid. (You don’t want that extra liquid turning your casserole into a soup.) Spread a layer of potatoes on the bottom of the slow cooker and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper. Top with the vegetables that you are using. Pour over 1⁄3 of the sauce and sprinkle with 1⁄4 of the grated cheese. Repeat twice more until all the ingredients are used up, then finish with all the rest of the cheese. Cook on low in the slow cooker for 6–8 hours, or on high for 3–4 hours. (You could also bake at 400˚F for 1 hour, until the potatoes are done.)

Emillie Parrish loves having adventures with her two busy children. She lives in Victoria and is the author of the fermentation-based blog

A freelance writer and family photographer based out of the Cowichan Valley, I specialize in photos with soft, natural lighting, earthy tones and an almost ethereal feel. I love capturing subtle but special moments between family members including big laughs, kisses, hugs and playfulness. Keep an eye out for a great deal on Spring Family Mini Sessions in April. For more information on all regular sessions, please visit

Emmanuel Preschool 2121 Cedar Hill Cross Road (by entrance to UVic) Children learn through play in our all inclusive, non-denominational Christian preschool. Great facility; outdoor play area and a gym for rainy day play! Two teachers with ECE certification plus an assistant teacher to help with special needs children. A competent and caring teaching team!

Class Options for 2017–2018: Mon/Wed/Fri morning class Tues/Thurs morning class 5 mornings a week

Phone 250-598-0573 February 2017  45

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St. Joseph’s Early Learning Centre 785 W. Burnside Rd.  250 479 1237 St. Joseph’s Early Learning Centre offers half-day and full day Preschool

I Love You But I Don’t Like You


esides eating too much chocolate and making heart-shaped pancakes, my favourite way to celebrate Valentine’s Day as a family is with a sweet tradition we call the Love Jars. I don’t think I invented this tradition, but I try to pass it off as my idea whenever I get the chance. To prepare, I set out five mason jars, one for each member of our family, and beside them, a bowl of paper scraps, carefully cut into heart shapes. In the week approaching Valentine’s Day, we are all meant to write things we love about each other on the heart-shaped scraps of paper, and then tuck the hearts into the appropriate jars. On Valentine’s Day, we read them out loud.

a Licensed Group Day Care for children three and four years old. JosephʼsinEarly Learning Centre Our Preschool program strives to awaken the child’s spirit and 5 W. Burnside Rd. 250-479-1237 imagination and encourages the desire for independence and high self-esteem through creative play. Applications are available on-line

or at the Early Learning office. announce that our Early Learning CentreCentre is now of operation are who 7:30am–5:00pm. ring full timeHours daycare for children are 3 and 4For additional information please contact Wendy at 250-479-1237. ications are available on-line or from theBird-Borau Early fice. St. Josephʼs offers an excellent program in a atmosphere. are 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM. For additional information an Clifford at 250-479-1237.

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46  Island Parent Magazine

For years, my children adored this tradition. When they were younger, I wrote what they dictated: I love you because you are silly and funny…I love you because you play chase with me…I love you because you smell like apples. When they were able, they wrote their own notes, scrawled in fat, sideways letters across the little heart notes—some of them illegible, of course, but every one beautifully earnest. The sweetest sentiments have been expressed in the Love Jars over the years, and I treasure them all in a big

envelope, kept as physical proof that at one time, the children appreciated each other. Because last year, it wasn’t so easy, and I suspect this year will be harder yet. The kids are now 10, eight and five, and while five is still full of forgiving affection, the older two have decided to dislike each other as a basic principle. “His feet smell!” “She broke my spaceship!” “He pulled my hair again!” They are absolutely overflowing with reasons why they should NOT love each other and suddenly it is very difficult, even impossible, for them to find anything nice at all to say on the hearts.

Sarah Milligan

City Centre Park

Live the Lifestyle

1089 Langford Parkway, Victoria BC V9B 0A5



Is There an App for This? As the eldest of six kids, I understand the love-hate relationship. But I still had trouble keeping my patience when the best my eldest could come up with last February, to summarize her love for her only brother, was “Dearest younger brother who is usually annoying me, I like it when you are not home.” The truth, perhaps, but not one I want documented in Love Jar history. But maybe this state of dis-affection IS the most honest expression of their love for each other. After all, they only annoy each other so much because they are so similar in personality, because they live in the same house, because they can be completely rude to each other without jeopardizing their relationship in any way. Because sibling love, in this way, is safe and unconditional. And in that light, their obnoxious comments have an unlikely beauty. This year I am setting out the Love Jars with my eyes wide open, fully expecting weeks of bemoaning and complaints. I know things will not be Hallmark-perfect, but we’re doing it anyway—and I am still dubiously hopeful that something nicer than “To my Stink-butt Sister” will turn up on those hearts. Hopefully the love in the jars will add up to enough, over the years, to sustain us as we all continue to learn one of life’s most important lessons: that we don’t have to like someone in order to love them. The proof is in the jars. Sarah Milligan lives on Vancouver Island. She is grateful to her children for the joy they inspire, not to mention the endless writing fodder.



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$50 for 1hr of bowling for 4ppl includes shoes, 1 large pizza & a jug of pop Before 6:30PM February 2017  47

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Youth Adults Schools Teams

3202 Young Lake Road, Sooke, BC 48  Island Parent Magazine

Just Give Me a Minute


ust give me a minute.” It’s a phrase I’ve used on my kids so many times that they’ve come to expect it. Recently, after one of them made a request of me, I heard the other one say: “Daddy will say ‘Just give me a minute’ and it will be like 10 minutes” which kinda broke my heart a bit and served as a good wake-up call. It’s difficult sometimes when there’s a front brake caliper to fix, when the carport needs a sweep because the acorns are attracting mice who are now living in the car’s engine, and, speaking of that, an engine that needs to be cleaned out and the wires checked ASAP. “Daddy, can you…” “Just give me a minute, I’ve got to take out the compost.” There’s that, and there’s the email that should probably go out sooner than later. And there’re those dishes in the drying rack that have coalesced into a small mountain that I should really put away. And there’s the upstairs toilet, mysteriously clogged again, so I gotta stop everything and deal with that. “Daddy, can you...” “Just give me a minute, I’ve got to…” Well, quickly check Facebook for no good reason. And on it goes. Every dad reading this—every person reading this—knows how the juggling act goes. With work, household chores, and trying to sneak in little moments of personal time to save sanity, sometimes it’s easy to put off the kids for a few minutes. But here’s what I’ve learned: those minutes add up, and then they disappear, and then the kids are suddenly eight and five and I’m left thinking that those “just a minute”s are gone forever, time I could have had with them. I’ve come to believe that it doesn’t matter if the house is messy, it doesn’t matter if email isn’t sent for a few more hours, it

doesn’t matter if Facebook is only checked once a day. What matters is having a few minutes playing checkers with my daughter (she usually beats me; the beauty is I’ve stopped playing nice, she’s just that good) or play-fighting with my son (I’m still Loki, he’s whatever superhero is capturing his fancy that day). Even if I don’t clean the carport until the day they move out as teenagers, that’s fine by me. Sure, easier said than done most days. The pile of dishes bugs me, the messy playroom attracts silverfish, and the secret to a successful work day in my line of work is

Greg Pratt Dadspeak

a clean email inbox. But I can stay up an hour later to catch up. For now, my kids need me; even if it’s nothing super pressing, they need me. They need someone to play games with and someone to create memories with—even if it’s just memories of 30 minutes spent lying on the floor playing a card game. Those memories are some of the most important ones you can make as a parent. Indeed, some of my favourite childhood memories aren’t the big ones that you’d expect, they’re the small moments: the time my dad cut a sandwich for me in a straight line across the bread instead of a diagonal; one random time we were in the Hillside Centre Sears toy section (back in the ’80s, when it was where, I believe, the Garden Centre is now, and it was bad-ass; kids today have no idea what they’re missing). So let the rest of life wait. Your kids need you. Sure, sometimes you need a bit of “you time” but you’ll get it, sooner or later. To be frank, now isn’t the time for you. It isn’t the time for me. It’s the time for them. Don’t let the little distractions, the small stressors, the unnecessary complications, get in the way. Don’t let those “just one minute”s add up.

porteS ouverteS visitez l’École

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Pour plus d’informations, communiquez avec la direction de l’école. Greg Pratt is the father of two children and a local journalist and editor. His writing has appeared in, among other places, Today’s Parent, Wired, Revolver and Douglas. February 2017  49

Sleep Like a Baby, But Safely

Healthy Families, Happy Families

Child, Youth & Family Public Health South Island Health Units Esquimalt Gulf Islands

250-519-5311 250-539-3099

(toll-free number for office in Saanichton)

Peninsula 250-544-2400 Saanich 250-519-5100 Saltspring Island 250-538-4880 Sooke 250-642-5464 Victoria 250-388-2200 West Shore 250-519-3490


abies come into the world on their own schedule—they generally sleep when they need to: now and again, day or night, here and there. Rapid growth and development occur in the first year, impacting sleep for both babies and parents. In those early months many parents feel like they are just along for the ride. Sleep is a popular topic for parents. How do I get my baby to fall—and stay—asleep? What is the right amount of sleep? How can I, as a parent, get enough sleep? When will my baby sleep through the night? The list goes on. Sleep safety is an important issue that needs to be front and centre of the conversation. Parents must decide where babies sleep along with other decisions related to their environment. Certain factors are known to either keep babies safe or unintentionally put them at higher risk of sleep-related harm. In June 2016, the B.C. Coroner’s Office sent out an alert stating that infant deaths due to unsafe sleep practices are on the rise in B.C. In the first four months of 2016,

unexplained death in infancy. In the case of SIDS there is no clear cause identified, whereas with SUDI, external risk factors are noted as possibly contributing to the

a total of 15 babies died in B.C. Of those deaths almost half of the babies lived on Vancouver Island, and sadly, most of those deaths were related to unsafe sleep practices. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (known more commonly as SIDS) and Sudden Unexplained Death in Infancy (SUDI) are terms used to describe a sudden, unexpected and

plan and make sure others who care for your baby are aware of the plan. • Put your baby on their back to sleep. When they roll over or change their position themselves it is not necessary to reposition them. • Use approved cribs, cradles and bassinettes for sleep. If this is not an option,

Sadie Greco & Helen von Buchholz CH ILD YOUTH & FAMILY PUBLIC H E ALTH

Happy Families, Healthy Families

death. SIDS rates have reduced dramatically since the 1990s when the “Back to Sleep” campaign was introduced in B.C. And yet infant deaths are still a reality in our communities due to SIDS and SUDI; in fact this is the number one cause of death in healthy infants under the age of one in Canada. Although some questions remain unanswered, it is known that following safe sleep practices lower the risk.

What Parents Can Do

Every sleep counts—whether home or away. Think ahead to have a safe sleep

Central Island Health Units Duncan Ladysmith Lake Cowichan Nanaimo Nanaimo Princess Royal Parksville/ Qualicum

250-709-3050 250-755-3342 250-749-6878 250-755-3342 250-755-3342

Port Alberni Tofino

250-731-1315 250-725-4020


North Island Health Units Campbell River 250-850-2110 Courtenay 250-331-8520 Kyuquot Health Ctr 250-332-5289 ‘Namgis Health Ctr 250-974-5522 Port Hardy 250-902-6071 50  Island Parent Magazine

consider using a laundry basket or drawer as a baby bed. • Keep your baby’s sleep surface firm and free of clutter. • Have baby sleep in their own separate sleep space in the same room as you until your baby is six months old. • Keep your baby from getting too warm—use a sleep sack rather than swaddle. • Be smoke-free, before and after the birth. • Breastfeed—any amount is protective against SIDS. • Call your Public Health Nurse. Education, support and resources are offered to families as they make their way through the first days, weeks and months of parenthood. In 2015 Island Health began a safe sleep initiative called the Baby Bed program to support families and to promote safe sleep. The program is available to families living in the Cowichan Valley, Port Alberni and along the west coast of Vancouver Island and will be expanding due to its great success and enthusiastic feedback from participating families. The Baby Bed program is a safe sleep intervention that has proven to decrease infant deaths due to SUDI. First introduced in Finland more than 70 years ago, baby beds are self-contained sleeping containers with solid walls, a firm mattress and fitted sheet, which allow infants to sleep safely. The Finnish Baby Bed program is one factor related to Finland having one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world. Families living in areas where the program is available can contact their local health unit or community nurse to inquire about the program. They will speak with a public health or community nurse who will explain the program, how to get a bed and help connect them to the supports they may need as new parents. Families living


in other areas of Vancouver Island will be able to access the program within the next few years. The bed design meets all Canadian basinet safety requirements, serves as baby’s first bed and encourages safe sleep practices and recommended positioning of infant. Inside

Registering Now for r Septembe

• Licensed programs for 3 and 4 year olds • Part – time, flexible scheduling • 2.5 & 4 hour programs • Outdoor program options • Competitive rates, subsidy available • Qualified Early Childhood Educators Located at Saanich Neighbourhood Place, in Pearkes Recreation Centre For more information contact 250-360-1148 ext 101 the bed are a number of gifts for mother and baby to help prepare for a strong healthy start including clothing, digital thermometer, nursing pads, and diapers. The beds are offered to all women living in participating communities who are either pregnant or have recently given birth (or recently adopted a newborn). Stay tuned for more details about the expansion of the Baby Bed program beyond Cowichan Valley, Port Alberni and the west coast of Vancouver Island. Sadie Greco is a Public Health Nurse with Island Health. Helen von Buchholz is a project manager for Public Health.

Island Health Baby Bed video: American Academy of Pediatrics; Updated 2016 Recommendations For a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment: PHAC Safe Sleep Video: 0-2/sids/ss-eng.php Sleep Well, Sleep Safe: A Booklet for Parents of Infants from 0-12 months and For All Who Care for Infants (Best Start, Ontario) resource_FNL_LR.pdf Caring For Kids; Safe Sleep For HealthLinkBC: Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) HealthLinkBC: Safe Sleeping For Babies

Early Care and Learning Programs for Preschoolers

Year-round Getaway on Mayne Island with direct daily ferries from Swartz Bay

9 housekeeping cottages perfect for family getaways

250-539-2463 • 1-877-535-2424 February 2017  51

Four Unexpected Titles


everal books have arrived over the transom that are especially gorgeous. (“Over the transom” originally referred to unsolicited manuscripts arriving at a publisher’s office, tossed over the door, through the window atop the transom bar.) Two of the books were published this year by Canada’s Tundra Books to honour the centenary of the Great War (19141918). The first, John Wilson’s A Soldier’s Sketchbook, goes above and beyond in physical appeal and readability. Subtitled The Illustrated First World War Diary of R.H. Rabjohn, the book is the true, richly illustrated diary of a hopeful, 18-year-old Toronto artist who joined the army in 1916, and would return home in 1919, “battlehardened,” as Wilson puts it. The book comes complete with Rabjohn’s misspellings—he would have dropped out of school at 14, as children were allowed to do in those day—and is an assiduous, informative record of war life, from lighthearted training in Toronto to horror-filled months in the muddy dugouts of Passchendale. Every page is filled with Rabjohn’s excellent pencil sketches; for the army, he would illustrate educational posters and even paint the crosses for soldiers’ graves (he then drew pictures of the crosses to send to the soldiers’ families back home). Indeed, on the front lines, his diary becomes at times a catalogue of the deaths of his friends, as Wilson notes, yet Rabjohn retains youth’s buoyancy. Consider this entry (the square brackets are Wilson’s, and “Frizs” is Rabjohn’s misspelling for Fritz, the Germans): “Frizs start[ed] to shell again, keeping it up all night and us in a small dugout [with a] tin roof. One shrapnel ball came through, just missing my head by half a foot [fifteen centimetres], knocking dirt all over my face, and the ball fell on my pillow…Simmons and Watson were killed in their dugout, both being cut off at the hips. Killed instantly.” Only a few weeks later, Rabjohn, on leave, writes, dazzled, of visits to the Eiffel Tower and the “magnificent” palace of Versailles. Four years ago, after Wilson gave a talk about the war to a Grade three class in Ontario, the teacher, Melissa Rabjohn, showed Wilson her ancestor’s diary. On seeing the war artist’s copious detailed illustrations, “a chill shot down my spine,” Wilson explains. There is much here for a child of 10 years

old and up, with an interest in history, war, art or memoir, to take in. A perfect companion to A Soldier’s Sketchbook is Sigmund Brouwer’s Innocent Heroes (Tundra, 2017), about the heroic animals of World War 1—the 100,000 pigeons that ducked bullets to deliver lifesaving messages, the half a million cats the British Army deployed in the trenches to dispatch rats (one cat got 23 in one night), the quarter million calm, intelligent mules that lugged and carried through thick mud, the dogs and horses. The book’s grace comes from its use of narrative. Rather than deliver the facts, Brouwer creates a fictitious platoon of soldiers to tell the stories of individual animals. One soldier, for instance, is tasked with caring for Little Abigail, the pigeon that flew over enemy lines with a message that the platoon was trapped. Despite being shot three times, the pigeon made it and saved dozens of men. The stories are true, though the characters and their conversations imagined. It’s the outer reaches of creative non-fiction, but it works. Each chapter is followed by well-written background information. This is a terrific book for kids nine and up interested in animals and in history. Colorado writer Avi (Crispin: The Cross of Lead, Poppy’s Return) is one of my favourite children’s writers. His work is consistently intelligent and crafted, and his range—genre, age of audience—is astounding. In The Most Important Thing (Candlewick Press, 2016), he puts his pen to an under-represented form for kids: the short story. Subtitled Stories about Sons, Fathers and Grandfathers, the collection does not prettify or duck the tougher questions about boys and the men meant to guide them. These are stories about tough and even unresolveable relationships; they are humanely detailed—Avi’s work, thankfully, will never be labelled “gritty.” The boys in these stories live with disappointment, embarrassment, and hope, and develop agency as they deal with the imperfect men in their lives. The story “Going Home” rises to allegory. A young boy refuses to believe that his father only wants to see him once a week and decides to move in with him permanently, essentially running away from his mother’s house. He arrives to a home re-decorated,

with all of his books and toys removed convince him that you do love him.” Cue from his room. His father has remarried in the tears. a whirlwind affair, telling no one. He also Spot 12: The Story of a Birth (Raincloud, never told his new wife about his son. It’s 2015) was delivered to me by hand by its author, Victoria writer and artist Jenny Jaeckel. It is an unlikely title for Book Nook, first of all because it is a title for adults. The graphic memoir (by graphic, I mean it is presented as a comic) is also unlikely because it manages, on every Book Nook page, to wring poetry from unimaginable distress. Jaeckel’s daughter Asa was born with tracheoesophogeal fistula (TEF) and unbelievable, yes, and yet on a metaphorical esophagal atresia—a malformed esophagus. level, the story carries the painful truth of The baby would spend months in intensive some children’s lives. care and require multiple operations, inThe collection’s last story, “Tighty- cluding one immediately after being born. Whities or Boxers,” is light, funny, and “The second time I saw Asa was before moving. Three years after his father dies, the surgery. I…looked for a place to touch Ryan’s mother announces she would like her, this wretched, half-dead-looking tiny to remarry. She is eager for him to meet her stranger who was our baby,” writes Jaeckel. fiancé. Ryan decides the man must apply for I sobbed most of the way through this the position of father, a process that includes book, but my tears were warm. I cried for two letters of reference and an interview. Asa, and for her parents, but also for the In the interview, as well as asking which richness of life—the complex knit of friendkind of underwear the suitor prefers, Ryan ship, compassion, intelligence and kindness asks, “What’s the most important thing you that arise to counter fear, pain, psychologican do for your son?” The answer: “The cal turmoil, and hopelessness. As much as first thing is to love him. Second thing is, this is a book about suffering, it is about

Sara Cassidy

marriage, the medical system—its highs and lows—realistic love and, of course, parenting. Jaeckel captures it all with ease. This book will appeal to parents who know the otherworldly rooms of intensive care units and their friends, who want to understand what they have been through.

Sara Cassidy’s book for 8 – 12 year olds, A Boy Named Queen, is a 2016 Quill and Quire Book of the Year.

Transforming disability into ability. At Discovery School, learning disabilities are transformed into valuable skills and abilities. Students work at their own pace in small classes, with focused, individualized instruction. • Experienced, highly-qualified teachers • Ongoing assessment, evaluation & feedback • Improves organizational & study skills • Boost confidence, independence & responsibility • Nurturing environment based on Christian values • For students aged 7 – 18 in grades 1 – 12 • Individual Education Plans • Low student/teacher ratio

Enrolment is limited. For more information or to arrange a tour, visit, call Sherri Ko at 250-595-7765 or email

February 2017  53

FAMILY SERVICES Directory This directory, sponsored by Thrifty Foods, features not for profit agencies and organizations serving children, youth and families.

1Up, Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre ( provides support, education and resources for parents in the Greater Victoria area through free counselling, volunteer training for peer helper positions, a mentoring program for single moms and a support group for dads. The Centre also offers a variety of integrated life skills and parenting courses which are open to the whole community (fees are on a sliding scale). The Centre provides free toys and books, a clothing room and bread pantry for single parents. Donations of gently-used clothing, small household items, books and toys are welcome. Hours are Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri: 9-4, Wed: 12-7. 602 Gorge Rd. East; call 250-385-1114 or Beacon Community Services is a community-based non-profit agency providing social, employment, and health services to Saanich Peninsula, Greater Victoria, and Southern Gulf Islands residents. Beacon offers: child, youth, and family services; a drop-in family resource centre; counselling; employment services for adults, youth, and people with disabilities; home support; volunteer services and opportunities; community events; affordable assisted living for seniors; referrals, information, and resources; thrift shops. For Home Support information call 250-6586407; for all other inquiries call 250-656-0134, or visit Beacon Community’s Employment Services. Beacon Community Services provides a full menu of employment services to the Saanich Peninsula, Southern Gulf Islands. We have been helping people find work since 1982! Our programs build on a client’s strengths and resolve barriers to securing and maintaining employment. Furthermore, we work in tandem with our employer network to support those residents looking for work. If you need help finding a job or need employees please pay us a visit! It’s FREE. 9860 Third St, Sidney, 250-656-0134, Boys & Girls Club Services offer after-school and evening social, educational and recreational programming for children and youth at 5 locations (Colwood, Langford, VicWest, Central Saanich and Esquimalt) and summer camps both in Esquimalt and at our Outdoor Centre in Metchosin. We also offer support to parents through our

54  Island Parent Magazine

Parents Together program and parent workshops. For more information on all programs and services visit bgcvic. org or call 250-384-9133. Canucks Autism Network (CAN) provides high-quality, adapted sports, recreational and social programs for kids, teens and young adults living with autism on Vancouver Island. Shawnigan Lake: Multisport day camp, bike clinics and family camp. Victoria: Swim, soccer, skate and physical literacy. Nanaimo: Swim and physical literacy. Family events take place throughout the year! Become a member for only $25/year at Call 604-685-4049, email or visit for more information. CHOICES Adoption & Counselling is a licensed, professional, non-profit agency that provides services to adoptive parents, birth-parents, and adoptees. CHOICES arranges adoptions domestically and internationally. We are committed to providing a comprehensive, clientcentered adoption service which best meets the needs of everyone in the adoption constellation. Please contact us at, or call 250-479-9811 for further information. Community Living Victoria’s Autism Services offers dynamic community-based programs for children and youth (6 – 18 yrs) with Autism. We offer 1:1 Behaviour Intervention, Social Skills Groups and spring, summer and winter Day Camps. Our skilled and caring team draws from various behaviour support models to customize programming for each youth. Fun programming within safe, supportive environments motivate youth to expand their interests, gain confidence, strengthen social and communication skills, and build friendships. 250-477-7231. Community Options for Children and Families offers recreational support groups for Children and Youth age 6-18 who have a brother or sister with a disability. The Sibshop Program allows children and youth to connect with peers who understand what it is like to be a Sib. Sibkids (age 6-12) and Sibteens (age 13-18) are play and activity based designed to provide opportunity for participants to

share in a comfortable and safe environment. For further info call 250-380-6363 or End Dyslexia provides a qualified speaker to share information about advances in neuroscience and technology that are now making it possible to end dyslexia relatively quickly, affordably and with lasting results. Award-winning speech language pathologist Marlene Lewis is donating her time and expertise to deliver research-based presentations that clearly show what steps need to be taken to do this. If you would like Marlene to speak to your group, find out when her next free public talk is or learn more, please visit or call 250-474-6368. Family Services of Greater Victoria (formerly BC Families in Transition) is a non profit agency that has been serving families since 1978. We provide a full range of services to the whole family in supporting their relationship and through separation and divorce. Counseling, mediation, legal information and a range of group programs are available for children, youth and adults on a sliding fee scale. Call us at 250-386-4331 or visit We can help. HappyBaby Sleep Solutions helps families create healthy sleep habits in babies and children so everyone is well rested and happy. Sukkie Sandhu, M.Ed., has worked with hundreds of families locally in Victoria and worldwide. Sukkie is a Registered Clinical Counsellor so the cost of a sleep consultation may be covered under your extended medical plan. For more information visit or call 250-857-1408 for a FREE evaluation. Let’s get started! HeadWay Victoria Epilepsy & Parkinson’s Centre supports families living with seizures by offering parent workshops three times a year, educational presentations in schools and community groups as well as providing tutoring sessions and one-to-one professional consultations to help your child live up to their highest potential. Keep up to date with the latest research about treatments, lifestyle, and safety issues for your child. We can be reached at, or you can reach the Epilepsy Program Coordinator directly at 250-475-6677. Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria (ICA) is a service agency for immigrants and refugees. Programs offered include cross-cultural counseling, parenting programs (child care available), family violence programs, employment services, interpretation and translation, diversity workshops and training, ESL instruction, volunteering, youth programs and tutoring, as well as intercultural arts programming. 930 Balmoral Rd, 250-388-4728, info@,

Learning Disabilities Association of BC, SVI Chapter, educates, supports and advocates for children and youth with learning disabilities and related conditions. Services include a public lending library, individual/group support for parents and children, professional/educational workshops for parents and professionals. Child and youth programs include: reading/writing, academic skills, social/ emotional skill development and Fast ForWord. 1562 Fort St, Victoria, BC V8S 5J2. Ph 250-370-9513. Fax. 250-370-9421. Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) provides programs and services to the military family community including: 24-Hour Information Line; Deployment Information and Workshops; Short Term Counselling, Crisis Support or Intervention; Welcome/Relocation Services; Childcare and Family Support Services; Assistance for Families with Special Needs and Responsibilities. Call the MFRC: 250-363-2640 (1-800-353-3329) for information or visit Power To Be provides inclusive nature-based activity programs for youth and families living with a barrier or disability who need support to access recreation and their community. We create year-round programs to fit participant needs through activities such as kayaking, rock climbing, hiking, canoeing and more. Visit or call 250-385-2363 to get involved. Sooke Family Resource Society (SFRS) provides Family Resource Programs including: Prenatal Education and Outreach, Parent-Tot Drop-In Groups, Parent Discussion Groups, Family Support Groups and Outreach, a Toy and Book Lending Library, and Kingfisher Preschool. SookeWestshore Child Care Resource and Referral services, as well as all-ages counselling services are also provided by SFRS. Services are provided from the Child, Youth and Family Centres in both Sooke and the Westshore. Call 250642-5152 for more information or visit our website at SFRS’s Welcome Home Program is looking for homes that can support adults diagnosed with a disability looking to gain further independence. The livingsituations are varied and unique and can include living within a family home or a suite in the family home. The needs of the individuals are varied, dependent on the disability, but can include relationship building, life skills, meal prep, etc. For more information, please call 778-433-2023 or go Sooke-Westshore Early Years Centres provide information to families about children and family services, supports, child development and parenting. The Early Years Navigator will assist families with referral information for local early years programming, child care, public health, special needs intervention services, and social supports. The Sooke-Westshore Early Years Centres are hosted by Sooke Family Resource Society and located at the Child, Youth, and Family Centres in both Sooke and the Westshore and can be reached at 250-217-9243. Additional information can be accessed at Victoria Immigrant and Refugee Centre Society (VIRCS) supports immigrants and refugees living in Greater Victoria. Services are free and include one-onone counselling, parent education workshops, youth life skills classes, a preschool program, art therapy, language classes and academic support, employment help, computer classes and fun community events like free yoga, tai chi, dance and cooking classes. Visit us online at vircs. or phone 250-361-9433.

February 2017  55

PRESCHOOL & CHILD CARE Directory CENTRAL SAANICH Chrysalis Child Care................................250-652-0815 A nurturing and stimulating environment for a small group of 21⁄2–5 year old children. Qualified ECE promotes learning through play.

programs including swimming, skating, Victoria Conservatory of Music. Part-time spaces available. La Pré-Maternelle Appletree Preschool......250-479-0292 A French Immersion Program. 30 months to school age. Licensed Christian centre.



Goldstream Co-op Preschool....................250-474-3011 Learning Through Play for 3 and 4yr olds! For registration information go to our website:

Lexie’s Little Bears Child Care Inc........... 250-590-3603 Only seconds past luxurious Bear Mountain our highly respected outdoor program will not disappoint! Our “Nurture through Nature” facility is rooted from the Reggio-Emilia philosophies, allowing the children to use their environment as the “third teacher.” Located on 2 acres of forest land, your child will learn and grow in a natural surrounding of tress and wildlife! Newly expanded, we NOW have more spaces available for your Infant/Toddlers and Pre-Kindergarten aged children. We use the trees from our own property to build the furniture and some of the toys in all three centres. The children enjoy yoga, music, Spanish, sign-language and an outdoor classroom. In 2016, Lexie Biegun won the BC Provincial Gov’t award of Excellence for Child Care Providers. Please visit our Facebook page for current info. And pics, as well as our website at Cub House waitlist: 778-432-3600.

Leap Forward Childcare...........................250-818-9225 2758 Peatt RD. Licenced group childcare for children ages 6 months to 5 years old. Offering full-time and parttime care. Open 6:30am-5:30pm. For more information please contact Amber:, Miles of Smiles Nature Junior Kindergarten................... 778-265-4374 Come See Why Learning In Nature Rocks! Reggio Influenced Philosophy ages 3-5. Have Your Child Become a Nature Detective Today! Email RIA Early Learning Centre........................ 250-590-0781 Reggio Program—for Preschool aged children. A unique learning environment—encourages each child’s development.

CORDOVA BAY Carrot Seed Preschool.............................250-658-2331 Where children can discover, imagine, construct and learn through play. Wondrous natural playground. Cordova Bay Preschool........................... 250-658-3441 A bright and cheerful parent participation preschool with a philosophy of learning through play. 4 yr olds - M/W/F 9:151:15; 3 yr olds - T/Th 9:15-12:15. Lakeview Christian Preschool/Daycare..... 250-658-5082 30 mths to Kindergarten entry. Small group. Experienced teacher. Full time and part time spaces. Mornings only or full day. Monthly DROP IN STORY HOUR. For information please email

ESQUIMALT Ciara Early Childhood Centre...................250-386-7369 Education and Fun Hand in Hand! Exceptional care for ages 1-5yrs. Inclusive nature inspired kindergarten readiness program with Christian values. CiaraEarlyChildhoodCentre. Island Kids Academy Esquimalt...............250-381-2929 High quality child care (ages 1-5). Preschool curriculum offered within a warm, caring all-day program. Character development using the Virtues Project. Access to community

Child Care

Resource & Referral 56  Island Parent Magazine

METCHOSIN Metchosin Co-op Preschool..................... 250-478-9241 Est. 1960. Our school provides a beautiful natural play space and inclusive child led learning through play emergent curriculum. Two excellent ECEs per class provide loving and enriching family support. Half-day programs for 2.5-5 yrs. West-Mont Montessori School.................250-474-2626 Preschool Montessori instruction in a beautiful natural environment in Metchosin. Ages 30 months and up. Providing a balanced approach to incorporating Nature, French, Music and Art into a complete educational program. Be a part of a community devoted to the development of the whole child. Open House: Thursdays 9-11 am.

NORTH SAANICH In The Garden Childcare Centre.............. 250-654-0306 A GREAT PLACE TO GROW. Offering preschool, full day care, before and after school care for children aged 2.5 to 12 years old. Open all year.

OAK BAY Emmanuel Preschool.............................. 250-598-0573 Children learn through play in our non-denominational Christian preschool near UVic. Bright attractive setting. Gonzales Co-op Preschool....................... 250-727-1003 Children explore their imaginations in our learning-throughplay environments and large natural playground. Our Reggio

Emilia inspired program focuses on art, nature, music and friendship. Over 50 years serving Victoria’s families. Nuturing and highly qualified ECE and ECE Assistant. Parent participation level options available, nut-free and allergy-aware. Join us! Recreation Oak Bay.................................250-370-7200 Fully licensed, ECE Daycare, Preschool and Nature Preschool. Play based, child led learning. Afterschool care available.

SAANICH Arbutus Grove Children’s Centre..............250-477-3731 Formerly known as Goosey Gander Kindergarten. Half Day and Full Day Preschool Programs. Children’s learning is supported and nurtured through inquiry, exploration, play and creative expression. Camosun College Child Care Services........250-370-4880 Quality licensed facilities on both campuses providing children, newborn to 5 years, with rich early learning experiences in a learn through play environment. Carrot Seed Preschool.............................250-658-2331 Where children can discover, imagine, construct and learn through play. Wondrous natural playground. Extended hours starting Sept. Cloverdale Child Care................................. 250-995-1766 Register now for preschool 4 year olds Mon/Wed/Fri 9:00–1:00 & 3 & 4 year olds Tue/Thur 9:00–1:00. Full time Early Learning Centre 7:00am – 6:00 pm 3–5 year olds. Before and after school care. cloverdalechildcare@shawbiz. ca, Full o’ Beans Preschool............................... 250-360-1148 We offer ‘learn through play’ programming designed to foster your child’s natural curiosity and imagination. Flexible scheduling, 2.5 and 4 hour programs, qualified staff. Registration is ongoing! Island Montessori House......................... 250-592-4411 Inclusive, integrated and nurturing Preschool and Kindergarten programs. Located in a lovely rural setting with a focus on nature and outdoor environmental activities such as gardening and composting. Lakehill Co-op Preschool.......................... 250-477-4141 Where children’s development is nurtured through a child centered inclusive, play based program. Come visit our natural outdoor playground and meet our loving qualified ECE team. Multiple Levels of participation available, please enquire. Lambrick Park Preschool & Childcare........ 250-477-8131 Gordon Head’s only parent-participation preschool and childcare centre. Flexible options, play-based learning and outdoor play. Allergy friendly. Celebrating 40+ years.

Looking for child care? Need help with subsidy forms? Taking care of children? Need child care training? Your community’s best source of child care information and resources. Victoria & Gulf Islands: 250-382-7000 or 1-800-750-1868 Sooke: 250-642-5152  Westshore: 250-391-4324 Cowichan Valley: 250-746-4135 local 231 PacificCare (Ladysmith north): 250-756-2022 or 1-888-480-2273 Funded by the Province of BC

Montessori Educare.................................250-881-8666 Beautiful learning environment in Broadmead and Saanichton. 30 months to 5 years. Neighbourhood Junior Kindergarten....... 250-479-4410 Welcoming, culturally sensitive parent participation program in Lakehill School. Morning and afternoon. For 3s and 4s. See website for details. neighbourhood

Babies to Big Kids Childcare.......................250-590-2722 949 Fullerton Ave. Licenced group childcare for children ages 6 months to 11 years old. Offering full-time and part-time care. Open 6:30am-5:30pm. info@babies, Castleview Child Care............................. 250-595-5355 Learning Through Play & Discovery. Licensed non-profit, qual. ECE staff. Since 1958. Preschool and full-time care.

Oakcrest Preschool................................ 250-472-0668 A welcoming, nurturing environment with a large, bright facility. Learn through play with 2 caring ECEs.

Centennial Day Care............................... 250-386-6832 Exceptional childcare and education 35+ years. Nature inspired, play based program. NEW central, “green” building.

Pacific Christian School – Pre-School.......250-479-4532 Your child will love the playful, safe environment and caring staff at PCS Pre-School. Come and explore Educational Excellence to the Glory of God.

Christ Church Cathedral Childcare and Junior Kindergarten.......................... 250-383-5132 ECE and Specialist teachers provide an outstanding all-day, licensed program for 3–5 year olds. Spacious, renovated facility with a huge backyard in Fairfield.

Rainbows & Dreams Preschool................ 250-479-1966 Small classes for 3-5 yr olds in a safe nurturing environment. Children learn through play and fun–developing a sense of confidence, independence and creativity. Highly qualified ECE teacher. Ready Set Grow Preschool....................... 250-472-1530 Inside Hillcrest Elm. in Gordon Head, we help children transition to Kindergarten. Licensed Preschool with highly qualified, warm ECE. Rogers Child Care Centre........................250-744-2343 Trusted High Quality Non Profit Care since 1991. Year Round Early Learning and Out of School Care. For more info go to St. Joseph’s Catholic Preschool................... 250-479-1237 • A Christian child centre for 3–5 year olds. • A warm nurturing and challenging program • Offered by St. Joseph’s Catholic School. Wiseways Preschool & Daycare................ 250-477-1312 Quality, fully licensed, Christian preschool/daycare for 3–4 year olds. Experienced team of ECEs. Spacious facilities include large playground and indoor gym. Subsidized fees welcome. Call for a tour.

SIDNEY Acorntree Preschool................................250-686-1408 Balanced indoor/outdoor program, designed to stimulate natural curiosity and foster empathy and compassion towards others. We believe in the importance of both child and teacher directed activities. Positive Path Early Learning....................250-655-7244 Located near the library and Sidney School, our program has earned a stellar reputation for quality child care and is growing as fast as the children we care for. Space is available for your child to embark on a journey of active exploration and discovery, enjoying a natural outdoor playground and an expansive indoor learning space. Experienced educators foster a lifelong quest for knowledge and guide children with Christian values and virtues. Storyoga Preschool................................. 778-679-4004 Embracing and empowering children exactly as they are. Storyoga Preschool is a nature and yoga based program located in Sidney, BC.

VICTORIA ArtsCalibre Academy.............................. 250-382-3533 Comprehensive programs for Preschool through Grade 6, delivering academic excellence through music, dance, drama and visual arts. Outstanding educators, locations and facilities.

Nightingale Preschool and Junior Kindergarten Ltd....................250-595-7544 We offer education through creativity and play, providing rich learning experiences through a well sourced and stimulating indoor and outdoor environment. Early years reading programme. Arts/Drama programme. Parkdale Early Childhood Centre.............250-382-0512 ECEs offer the highest quality care and positive learning experiences in our daycare and preschool. Full time or part time. Call for a tour or visit us at Rainbow Express Daycare....................... 250-382-2314 A nurturing environment for children to learn through play and discovery in a natural setting. ECEs and specialist teachers. Close to city centre. Ross Bay Preschool.................................250-383-7445 Positive/supportive program motivating children to learn, discover and grow through play. Daily outdoor time, special guests and community events! rossbaypreschool The Sir James Douglas Playschool.......... 250-389-0500 Fun, creative and educational ECE program for 3-5 year olds to grow and develop life long skills. Come play and learn in our bright and modern centre in Fairfield. Victoria Montessori................................ 250-380-0534 Unique, innovative learning environment combining the best of Montessori and Learning Through Play. Open yr. round. 30mths–K. YMCA-YWCA Child Care Centres...............250-386-7511 Enriched programs for children 10 months – 5 years. Our programs support healthy child development and future school success.

VIEW ROYAL Island Kids Academy View Royal.............250-727-2929 High quality child care (ages 1-5). Preschool curriculum offered within a warm, caring child care environment. Character development using the Virtues Project. Access to community programs including swimming, skating, Victoria Conservatory of Music. Part-time spaces available. Little Wonders Preschool (View Royal OSC)..................................... 250-744-2718 A creative and supportive program that will prepare your child for a lifetime of learning! Out of School Care is also available for school aged children. A Secret Garden Preschool..................... 250-380-8293 Program built on Christian values. Monthly themes, weekly topics and daily activities. asecretgardenpreschool@shaw. ca.

View Royal Childcare...............................250-479-8067 Preschool structured, high quality childcare. Victoria Conservatory of Music classes. Part time spaces available. 2.5-5year olds. View Royal Preschool..............................250-479-8067 Exciting inclusive program in a safe and exceptional care environment. 3-5 year olds. Outside play and themes enrich this program. Full/part-time spaces available.

MILL BAY / COBBLE HILL Cedar Montessori..................................... 250-710-9007 A beautiful rural setting where children are lovingly supported to learn at their own pace within a stimulating Montessori environment.

DUNCAN International Montessori Academy of Canada................................................. 250-737-1119 Offers an enriching environment for preschool children 2-4.9 years with potty training. Nurturing young minds, keeping the spirit free. Parkside Academy..................................... 250-746-1711 Providing high quality early learning and care from infancy to 12 years of age, in a stimulating, respectful, nurturing, nature based environment with fully educated and passionate early childhood educators. Visit or find us on Facebook. Queen Margaret’s School.......................... 250-746-4185 Early Childhood Education Program. Co-ed nurturing curriculum to develop the whole child. Healthy snacks and lunch provided. Queen of Angels Early Learning Centre...... 250-701-0433 We believe that the development of the whole child (physically, socially, emotionally, cognitively, and spiritually) encourages each individual to develop to their full potential. We offer an enriched full day program for 3–5 year olds based on Kindergarten readiness. Sunrise Waldorf School Preschool..............250-743-7253 A warm, nature-based Waldorf rhythm where wonder is nurtured. Led by Waldorf trained ECE teachers.

CHEMAINUS St. Joseph’s Preschool..............................250-246-3191 An enriching preschool program allowing children to grow as individuals in a safe and nurturing Christian environment.

QUALICUM BEACH Children’s Discovery Centre.....................250-752-4343 Our program recognizes the uniqueness of each child and provides a nurturing, safe and creative learning environment. Licensed preschool, group care and out of school care. Early Childhood Educators. childrensdiscovery Little Star Children’s Centre.....................250-752-4554 Mother, Daughter owned and operated. Earth friendly preschool education inspired by nature. Infused with fun and creative daily yoga practices! Licensed group care. Enthusiastic ECE instructors.

PORT ALBERNI John Paul II Catholic School.....................250-723-0637 “Where children grow and learn through play.” We provide a program that will inspire development physically, socially, emotionally, cognitively, creatively and spiritually.

February 2017  57

Preschool/Kindergarten flexible part-time and full-time programs SECOND LOCATION OPENING SEPTEMBER 2017 Downtown Langford


February 18 10:00am – 12:30pm

250-812-3137 101–1701 Island Hwy, Victoria

Community Living Victoria If you are a family raising a child with autism, we can connect you to resources, information and services that meet your child’s needs. Autism Services offers: · 1:1 Behaviour Intervention · Social Skills Groups · Day Camps – winter, spring and summer breaks · Specialty Camps – computer camps, physical literacy and more To learn more, contact 250-477-7231 extension 237 or e-mail Visit to explore our wide range of services.

LifetimeFriendships… Lifetime Supports… Lifetime Networks. At Lifetime Networks we understand the importance of relationships. We build Networks of Friends, provide Continuing Education, Community Engagement Support, and Employment Preparation to enhance the lives of people with disabilities. Within inclusive, safe, welcoming settings we also offer groups for social opportunities, cooking, music and art. Lifetime Networks is an organization we are proud of and that makes a difference in our community. Wendy-Sue Andrew, Executive Director  #102–4090 Shelbourne St, Victoria BC 58  Island Parent Magazine

Mealtime Done Right


was a much better parent before Angus was born. Unlike now, when any significant parenting decision is followed by second-guessing and considerable selfdoubt, I had it all figured out. I had strong opinions on what was right, and though I held my tongue when friends were doing it wrong, I couldn’t help feeling a little sorry for them. It seemed clear that my instincts would result in an incredibly well-adjusted child and that my parenting experience would be easy, free of the struggles they often experienced. Sometimes I think about this hypothetical family life I imagined and long for it a little bit. The hikes that involved a serious appreciation for the natural world and physical prowess, rather than Tim Horton’s drive-thru coercion and shoulder-rides back to the car. The musical appreciation that translated into a family of revolving home stereo DJs, rather than a dictatorial rule of show tunes and silence. But mostly I long for the imagined meal times: my child, eating nearly everything I put in front of him while engaging with his parents in pleasant conversation about his school day and his other topics of interest: literature, art, maybe politics. Family mealtimes should be easy for me. I experienced them done the right way when I was a kid. I’ve read enough books on the topic to be granted a degree. I know theoretically how to entice my kid with vegetables, how to turn his palate into that of a French child’s. I am well aware that studies show that children who spend mealtimes in conversation with their parents are more successful in school. I know that screens are bad, and that screens at mealtimes are doubly so, guaranteed to promote an unhealthy relationship with food and a lifetime of mindless eating that will lead to obesity, heart disease and early death. This is the kind of stuff that keeps me up at night. But strategies that would have worked for my imagined child don’t work with my actual one. Angus has a variety of sensory issues— including sensory issues with food. He’s a picky eater, and that pickiness fluctuates. Even foods that seem to be safe bets go through periods of adamant refusal. He has problems with texture, and also a genuine difficulty with moving his food around his mouth. If he’s overwhelmed or upset this becomes much more significant. To illustrate:

the one time I took him to a food court for lunch (an event that I should have predicted would be a parenting fail), I bought Angus nigiri. This was during the period that nigiri was a on the very short list of guaranteed consumable food. Angus took one bite and

Laura Trunkey

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then proceeded to pick the rice that was “too crunchy” off his tongue grain by grain. Until we quickly fled the premises and I handed him a Cliff Bar in the car. Angus needs a calm and consistent environment in order to eat. Even at meals with our small extended family, he rarely has more than a couple bites. He also needs a quiet, moderated distraction to take his mind off all the faults he can easily find with whatever is on his plate. At lunch, he listens to books on CD. At dinner, yes, he watches television. Or more specifically, we stream Curious George episodes or segments of Roald Dahl movies on my laptop. Mike and I can talk to each other, and Angus can contribute if the mood strikes. We can sometimes get through a meal without complaints. Angus will occasionally eat everything we put in front of him. For us, this is what defines success: no screaming and a full stomach. If dinner was illustrated by Maslov’s triangle, we are very much still on the ground floor. I don’t tell people about our mealtimes because I’m embarrassed about them. I have expended way too much energy trying to figure out how to pull off a successful experience the “Right” way—and I come up short every time. “Right” in the capital-R sense is not right for our family. I’m getting close to finally accepting this. The fact is, the biggest parenting struggles have little to do with how well-adjusted a kid is, and much more to do with how easily his parents can let go of the ideals they’ve been holding on to. We hike with Timbit promises. We listen to Mary Poppins on repeat. We eat our meals with the company of a friendly monkey and a kid who often gets more food on his clothes than in his mouth. For now that’s just fine.

Laura Trunkey is mother to the amazing Angus and the author of a forthcoming short fiction collection from House of Anansi. Email

Enter Our Online Contests • Family Getaways • Gift Certificates • IMAX Passes • Books, CDs & More One entry per family per week. Check out the prizes and enter the contests by visiting ADVERTISERS Directory Andrea’s Sew Easy.......... 8 Arbutus Grove............... IFC Arts Calibre...................IBC Ashley Degraaf Photography.............. 45 Aspengrove School........10 Bloom Montessori.......... 58 Blue Vista........................ 51 Camp Barnard................ 48 Carrot Seed.................... 35 Christ Church Cathedral School........................ 38 Cinecenta........................ 41 City Centre Park..............47 Community Learning..... 34 Community Living Victoria....................... 58 Conseil scolaire francophone.............. 49 Discovery School........... 53 Dr. Joslin, Dr. Morin & Associates............. IFC Dr. Shannon Barnsley..... 17 Elizabeth Buckley School......................... 41 Emmanuel Preschool............. 30, 45

Evergreen School...........47 Falcon Gym.................... 36 Full ’o Beans................... 51 Investors Group............. 34 IMAX............................... 35 International Montessori Academy.. 17 Island Montessori............ 6 Juan De Fuca Skating.....27 Kaleidoscope...................11 Kool & Child.....................37 Kumon............................ 23 Langford Montessori..... 55 Leap Forward Dance..... 40 Lexie’s Little Bears.......... 15 Lifestyles........................ 43 Lifetime Networks.......... 58 Little Steps..................... 23 Mad Science.................. 25 Miles of Smiles................ 61 Mineral World................. 25 Momease...................... IFC Mothering Touch...............7 NIDES..............................37 O'Brien Irish Dance........ 39 Oak & Orca..........27, 43, 54 Oaklands Dental............ 55

Oyaco............................. 26 Pacific Christian............IBC Pacific Coast Swimming.................. 40 Pacific Rim College........ 32 PISE...............................IBC Pumpkin Pie................... 55 Queen Margaret’s........... 14 Re/Max Duncan.............. 22 Royal BC Museum......15, 21 Saanich Dental............ 9, 14 Saanich Recreation........... 1 School District #62......... 13 School District #63........ 22 Serious Coffee................ 31 Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea............ 60 St. Joseph’s...............40, 47 St. Joseph’s Chemainus..................37 St. Margaret’s School....... 6 St. Michaels University School..................... 9, 13 Sunrise Waldorf.............IBC Swan Lake....................... 61 Sylvan Learning.............. 19 Theatre One................... 20

Thrifty Foods.................. 33 Tillicum Centre.............. IFC TJ’s The Kiddie Store..... 39 Tom Lee Music............... 45 Total Learning..................11 Vancouver Island Jr. Field Hockey..........47 Vancouver Island University.... 5, 18, 31, 62 Victoria Academy of Ballet...................... 20 Victoria Golf Club........... 42 Victoria Pediatric Dental.......................... 41 Victoria School for Ideal Education.......... 36 VIHA............................... 50 The Way Out................... 40 Welcome Wagon............ 30 Westmont Montessori.... 34 Westcoast Reach............ 61 Westshore Park and Recreation..................BC Westshore Town Centre........................ 24 William Murphy-Dyson... 36

February 2017  59

When the Season Is Spring I shall wake up and sing...

3,500 live animals Marine mammal display

but that dry up during the summer months. These wetlands serve as important breeding grounds for Northern Pacific Treefrogs. Males sit on the water’s edge and, in unison, sing their small but mighty vocal sacs out to serenade and attract females. Northern Pacific Treefrogs used to be called Pacific chorus frogs for exactly this reason. In mid to late February and March, you may hear these loud and striking frog choruses in CRD Regional Parks such as Elk/Beaver Lake, Francis King, Thetis Lake, Witty’s Lagoon, Devonian and Horth Hill. Northern Pacific Treefrogs pass air out from their lungs into their vocal sac, which is a loose pouch of skin under their chin. The

On Vancouver Island, there is not one frog singing in a bog in the spring, but hundreds of our native Northern Pacific Treefrogs gathered together in groups throughout bogs, ponds and small bodies of water referred to as ephemeral wetlands. Ephemeral wetlands are temporary bodies of water that may exist in the fall, winter and spring

vocal sac then balloons out like a big bubble as the musical notes are belted out. Some of you may have heard or be aware of the classic “rib-bit, rib-bit” or “krek-eck, krek-eck” frog sound. This frog croak is used as background noise in many Hollywood movies to represent nighttime. This sound is the breeding call of the Northern

Photo: May Sanseverino

Coast Salish Indigenous art

When the season is spring, I shall wake up and sing That’s amoré Then you’ll swim up to me and I’ll jump up with glee That’s amoré Lay a jelly egg, add some DNA Lay a jelly egg, add more DNA That’s amoré That’s the life of a frog when you live in a bog That’s amoré! (Sung to the tune of That’s Amoré as performed by Dean Martin in 1953, and adapted for frogs by Lori Bartley, Park Interpretation Specialist at Metro Vancouver Regional Parks.)


Pacific Treefrog, while our native Northern Red-legged Frog’s call is often lower-pitched and quieter as it is sung to the female from underwater of down to one metre in depth. In comparison to our native frogs, the breeding calls of the introduced and highly invasive Green Frog and American Bullfrog sound similar to the strum of a rubber band and a deep “bwaa, bwaa,” respectively. If you hear a Northern Pacific Treefrog call, I wish you all the best in trying to catch a glimpse of its source! Not only

Sara Mimick Nature Notes have these fascinating frogs been known to “throw” their voices, sounding as if they are calling from one location, when they are actually in another, but they are also quite small. Northern Pacific Treefrogs are approximately the size of two loonie dollars side by side (roughly two inches long). If those two things are not enough to throw you (or a predator) off their trail, these little frogs have a remarkable ability to blend into their surroundings. Northern Pacific Treefrogs can change the colour of their skin in seconds, depending upon their location and the air’s humidity. Often their colour is green in and around water, brown amongst branches and gray around rocks. One distinguishing mark of the Northern Pacific Treefrog that does not change is the black stripe that begins at the nostrils and runs through its eye down to its shoulder above the front leg. The next time you and your family are in a CRD Regional Park this February or March, prick up your ears because you may just hear the serenading song of the Northern Pacific Treefrog. For these little frogs, that’s amoré! Some upcoming CRD Regional Parks nature outings and events this month include a Family Fun Hike at Thetis Lake, Love is In the Park at Elk/Beaver Lake, Moss Landscapes and Under the Bird Tree at Francis King. To find out more visit crd.

Calling All Party Animals

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Exciting new performing groups and programs celebrating diversity of ages, cultures and abilities (including special needs).

REACH! Children’s Choir (ages 4-12 years) REACH! Performing Company (adults and youth, 13 years and up) Centrally located at Saanich Commonwealth Place in Royal Oak Award-Winning Artistic Director Anne-Marie Brimacombe, LRAM, ARCM WEST COAST REACH ASSOCIATION Tel. (250) 882-4339 Email:


"Tell me and I'll forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I'll understand" – Chinese Proverb Reggio Influenced Philosophy Child Led Learning

Registrations Now Being Taken for September 2017 Classes

Sara Mimick is a Park Naturalist with CRD Regional Parks.

Limited Spaces for Both Locations February 2017  61

Losing It


any parents feel horrible about the number of times they lose their temper. One reason the blow ups happen is because parents deny their own frustrations and don’t express themselves at times when feelings are manageable. You know, those moments when you are actually capable of expressing yourself like an adult! We owe this to our kids because they don’t always pick up on our body language, facial

62  Island Parent Magazine

Using them is a very mature thing to do. You will feel more like your child’s parent than their sibling when you pull this off. It’s okay, even beneficial if you say things expression and tone of voice. Our subtle feelings like frustration or annoyance fly under their radar. Teenagers will also misread emotions and see anger instead of feelings like worry, concern or overwhelmed. Body language can be misinterpreted by adults, too, as we tend to see or hear what we fear, especially during times of conflict. To make matters just a little more confusing, we often don’t even notice our own subtle feelings and that’s when we find ourselves slamming cupboard doors or going on the attack. Then, we wonder why our kids don’t listen to us! If you are stuck in this pattern, Cut It Out! When we say people are acting childish, we usually mean that their feelings are driving their behaviour. Think of the last time you “lost it” with your child. Maybe you were trying to get out of the house. Perhaps it was just as you were making dinner. What feelings came up before you lost it? Did you express yourself? How are other people, especially kids, supposed to know how you feel? I-statements are not nicey-nicey ways of tiptoeing around issues.

Allison Rees Cut It Out! like, “I’m feeling grumpy, I need a moment to myself.” Or “I feel so annoyed that you aren’t ready to go. I want to be on time!” Your body language will be understood if you use your words. This isn’t a tool to control others but it is an effective way to deal with the daily challenges of life. This can also eliminate needless punishments. After all, would you remove your partner’s car keys if he or she came home late? No, you would express how worried you were and how upset you feel. You might be surprised at how much kids will respect you when you practice this. LIFE Seminars has two books available, Sidestepping the Power Struggle and The Parent Child Connection. See

Waldorf education is imbued with life and joy. Call and book a tour of our beautiful seven acre campus today.

Now accepting applications for September 2017 Grades 1-8 Kindergarten | Preschool Offering a full enhanced program with French, Strings, Woodwork, Handwork, P.E. & Eurythmy 250-743-7253

Save the Date

Saturday, May 6 11am - 3pm

Preschool to Grade 7…and beyond.



at Imagine a School…where music, dance, theatre and visual arts are infused into all aspects of an outstanding curriculum. v Junior K and Half/Full-day Kindergarten options also available v Comprehensive K–7 program consistently exceeds BC Curriculum v Excellent facilities, convenient Cedar Hill and Gordon Head locations v Highly qualified, dedicated staff and low student/teacher ratios

Visit our website, come to one of our Open Houses, or call us!  250.382.3533

Over 30 activities!

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School Year

In our play-based preschools children have fun, build relationships and explore the world in which they live. Activities include arts & crafts, storytelling, music, cooking, indoor and outdoor play. We participate in a variety of off-site field trips, use of the library and kindergym, and activities such as dance, sports, yoga and skating. Our Licensed programs are led by certified Early Childhood Educators who are also trained in (NCCP) Fundamental Movement Skills. Children must turn the minimum age for the program by Dec 31, 2017. The * indicates programs that require children be the minimum age on the first day.


Nature Preschool

Bright Beginnings

For children entering kindergarten the following year. In addition to play-based learning, time is dedicated each day to kindergarten preparation such as numbers, literacy and structured activity. JDF KIDS COTTAGE 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM M Sep 11-Jun 18 $1088/32 109217 Tu Sep 12-Jun 19 $1258/37 109213 W Sep 13-Jun 20 $1258/37 109215 Th Sep 14-Jun 21 $1258/37 109214 F Sep 15-Jun 22 $1258/37 109216 ROYAL BAY SCHOOL 9:30 AM – 1:30 PM M Sep 11-Jun 18 $1088/32 108658 Tu Sep 12-Jun 19 $1258/37 108659 W Sep 13-Jun 20 $1258/37 108660 Th Sep 14-Jun 21 $1258/37 108661 F Sep 15-Jun 22 $1258/37 108662 KinderPrep at Royal Bay includes Nature-Based learning and daily outside time rain or shine.

Each class is spent outdoors where children will deepen their understanding of the natural world and their place within it. Drop off and pick up locations vary, and include the Juan de Fuca Rec Centre, Esquimalt Lagoon, Goldstream Park, and Fort Rodd Hill. JDF PICNIC SHELTER 9:00-11:30 AM M Sep 11-Jun 18 $736/32 109844 Tu Sep 12-Jun 19 $851/37 108997 W Sep 13-Jun 20 $851/37 108998 Th Sep 14-Jun 21 $851/37 108999 F Sep 15-Jun 22 $851/37 109845 * Children must turn 3 by the first day in program.

A class for those who don't meet the age requirements of year long preschool. We introduce children to exploring, sharing, and making friends. Classes includes music, play, art and crafts, stories and gym. JDF KIDS COVE 9:00 – 11:00 AM

4 Years

Discover Preschool

3-5 Years

Spend the day creating, exploring, and having fun with cooperative play and learning. In a mixed age setting, children are able to act as mentors and take leadership roles according to their abilities and interests. JDF PLAYROOM 12:30-3:00 PM Tu Sep 19-Jun 26 $851/37 109219 W Sep 20-Jun 27 $851/37 109220 Th Sep 21-Jun 28 $851/37 109221

Book a classroom tour!

3-5 Years*

Play & Learn Preschool

3 Years

This introductory class is designed to ease children’s transition to West Shore Parks & Recreation’s Year Long Preschool. Children build friendships and independence through play and hands-on learning. JDF PLAYROOM 9:00 – 11:30 AM M Sep 11-Jun 18 $736/32 109224 Tu Sep 12-Jun 19 $851/37 109223 W Sep 13-Jun 20 $851/37 109225 Th Sep 14-Jun 21 $851/37 109226 F Sep 15-Jun 22 $851/37 109227

2-3 Years*

Spring & Fall 2017 Tu/Th May 2-Jun 22 $256/16 FULL W/F May 3-Jun 23 $256/16 102035 Tu/Th Sep 12-Dec 14 $476/28 109291 W/F Sep 13-Dec 15 $448/28 109293 Winter & Spring 2018 Th/Tu Jan 9-Apr 26 $476/28 109295 W/F Jan 10-Apr 27 $432/27 109296 Tu/Th May 1-Jun 21 $272/16 109292 W/F May 2-Jun 22 $256/16 109294 * Children must turn 2 by the first day in program.

We accept families receiving Child Care Subsidy. If your child requires extra support or qualifies for funding through Supported Child Development contact the program supervisor prior to registration. Space is limited to one support staff per class.

Royal Bay & Nature Preschool

Katherine Salmons 250-474-2377 Ext 3900 Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre

Alexandra Matthew 250-474-8619

Registratio for new fam n begins Feb ilies ruary th at 6:00 AM 9 | 250-478-8384

February 2017 Island Parent  

Schools & Educational Services

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