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Island Parent Celebrating

25 Years

The Resource Publication for Vancouver Island Parents

January 2013

Social Media Know-How Giving Our Children to the World

Winter Programs Guide Moderate Parenting: Finding the Right Balance Growing up at the Library Hosting Homestays

children’s boutique


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Get Fit Sampler Week JANUARY 5 -11, 2013

Celebrate the New Year with a New Class! Sample some of our most popular classes or try a different class for 2013 at all 4 Saanich Recreation Centres. There's something for everyone. Check out the Saanich website at www.saanich.ca for more details and schedule of FREE classes being offered. Space for all classes are limited.

Eaton Arrowsmith School Victoria and The Learning Disabilities Association South Vancouver Island are pleased to present two opportunities to learn more about the Arrowsmith Program. In over 40 schools across North America, including Eaton Arrowsmith School Victoria, the Arrowsmith Program has helped over 4,000 students with learning disabilities and attention difficulties rewire the weaker cognitive areas of their brain that are the root cause of their academic and social struggles.

Thursday, January 24th, 2013 7-9pm

Experience a Live Arrowsmith Cognitive Classroom Demonstration Howard Eaton, Director of Eaton Arrowsmith Schools, and Arrowsmith students.

Sunday, January 27th, 2013 7-9pm

An Evening With Barbara Arrowsmith Young Founder of the Arrowsmith Program and author of The Woman Who Changed Her Brain. Books will be available for purchase and signing.

RSVP Email Sandra Heusel, Communications Director, Eaton Arrowsmith School at sheusel@eatoneducation.com or call 604-264-8327

Location for both events: David Lam Auditorium, University of Victoria,

Come to one or both presentations!

A144 MacLaurin Hall,

Free to attend. Donations to the Learning Disabilities South Vancouver Island will be accepted.

Ring Rd, Victoria, BC


January 2013  1

Contents: January 2013 Feature

Moderate Parenting....................................................................................... 10


Giving Our Children to the World................................................................... 8 West Coast Winter........................................................................................ 13 Literacy Begins at Home............................................................................... 14 Social Media Know-How.............................................................................. 16 Winter Programs........................................................................................... 20 Growing Up at the Library............................................................................ 24 Teenagers & Money...................................................................................... 26 Hosting Homestays....................................................................................... 30 Laundry Hung with High Hopes................................................................... 38 15 Minutes of Fun......................................................................................... 39 Teen Substance Use....................................................................................... 40 Playing in Nature.......................................................................................... 42 What Are Friends For?.................................................................................. 43 Fossil Field Trip............................................................................................. 44


Editor’s Note................................................................................................... 3 Healthy Families; Happy Families................................................................. 46 Dadspeak...................................................................................................... 48 Book Nook................................................................................................... 50 Just Eat It!..................................................................................................... 52 Is There an App for This?.............................................................................. 56 New Parent Pages.......................................................................................... 48 Maternity & Beyond..................................................................................... 61 Nature Notes................................................................................................ 62 Cut It Out..................................................................................................... 64


IPM Notes....................................................................................................... 4 Party Directory........................................................................................ 28, 29 Family Calendar............................................................................................ 32 Around the Island......................................................................................... 37 Family Services Directory........................................................................ 54, 55 Preschool & Child Care Directory........................................................... 58, 59 Business & Professional Directory................................................................. 60 Island Parent Magazine, produced by Island Parent Group Enterprises Ltd., is a monthly publication that honours and supports parents by providing information on resources and businesses for families, and a forum for the exchange of ideas and opinions. Views expressed are not necessarily those of the publisher. Letters (max 250 words) should be emailed to the Editor at editor@islandparent.ca. No material herein may be reproduced without the permission of the Editor. Unsolicited manuscripts are welcome and should be emailed to editor@islandparent.ca. Island Parent Magazine is distributed free in selected areas. Subscriptions can be obtained by sending $28.00 (HST included) with your name and address to the address below. Canada Post: Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement 40051398.

Island Parent Magazine

Suite A-10, 830 Pembroke St, Victoria, BC V8T 1H9 Tel: 250-388-6905  Toll Free: 1-888-372-0862 Website: www.islandparent.ca

Partner Website: www.kidsinvictoria.com On the Cover: Photo by Ute Muller at www.fotoartphotography.net, 250-216-9824

2  Island Parent Magazine

President, Publisher: Paul Abra Vice-President: Anna Abra Director, Production Manager: Mada Moilliet Editor: Sue Fast Sales & Marketing: RaeLeigh Buchanan Publisher’s Assistant: Linda Frear Bookkeeping: Elaine Francis Distribution: Anna Abra, Ted Dawe (Mid-Island) Founders: Jim Holland & Selinde Krayenhoff Production: Eacrett Graphic Design Printed at Island Publishers Cover printed at Hillside Printing ISSN 0838-5505


Parenting as Thrill-Seeker Sport


olcano boarding down a 500-metre slope at Cerro Negro, Nicaragua. Swimming with great white sharks off Cape Town, South Africa. Bungy jumping 233 metres from the Macau Tower in China, reaching speeds of 200 km/hr. Running with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, hoping not to add your name to the list of the 24 fatalities since 1924. Kayaking over Palouse Falls in eastern Washington, plunging 57 metres into the churning white-water below. These are just a few of the activities listed on CNN Travel’s “Thrill Seeker’s Bucket List: 50 Experiences to Try Before You Die.” Not on the list, however, and an activity that, if anyone had asked me, should’ve been perched at the top and ready for the biggest leap ever, is parenting. Parenting. That 24 hour-a-day, 365-daya-year, activity that­—in extreme conditions including grocery store line-ups, 10-hour intercontinental flights, kicking-and-screaming tantrums on the floor or worse, the public bathroom floor, middle-of-the-night Emergency Room visits, and even piano recitals— is the biggest adrenaline rush ever. Nothing else comes close. Six days running across the Sahara Desert during the Marathon des Sables, a 254 kilometre foot race in 50˚C heat, turning your feet into blistered, bloody stumps. Pshaw. Add a lifetime to those six days and you’ll get an idea of the endurance required for parenting. And forget about the kick of wing walking on a plane that’s traveling 220 km/hr or, say, falling at 180 km/hr during the Death Drop in Zambia. Parenting offers heart-stopping thrills that even a record-breaking mach speed

free fall from the edge of space can’t match. Sure, some extreme sports trigger the same physiological effects—increased heart beat, elevated blood pressure, quicker breathing, and the release of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol—but those sportsrelated physiological effects are fleeting. Not with parenting. You don’t have to climb to outrageous altitudes or dive to dangerous depths to experience to associated highs and lows. Ever remembered that you’re a volunteer driver for a field trip—that was scheduled to leave a half an hour ago? Or realized during what was supposed to be a quick drop-off at your child’s parent-participation preschool, that it’s your Duty Day—and that not only are you responsible for providing the peanut/gluten/dairy/wheat-free snack, but that underneath your jacket, you’re still dressed in your ratty old pajamas. And it’s not pajama day. But fear not. The release of stress hormones primes us for the challenges ahead and increases our confidence—which might explain the twisted notion that some of us get at 11 o’clock the night before the school bake sale to fashion a replica Titanic cake, complete with life preservers and chandeliers. The release of stress hormones also increases our appetite for risk, which, in turn, might explain why we’d let our three-year-old carry the Titanic cake on her lap during the drive to school. Bodily responses to fear can be detrimental, though, according to the article “Anatomy of Fear” in Psychology Today, especially since the most important one is a negative

one: the brain basically shuts down as the body prepares for action. Not a bad thing when it comes to something like skydiving. One minute you’re flying 3,600 metres above the earth, admiring the view. The next thing you know, someone’s thrown open the plane door, told you to count to three and

Editor’s Note Sue Fast get ready to jump, but before you can make it to “two,” they’ve sneaked up behind you and given you a shove. Which is kind of like ready-or-not nature of parenting. The difference between skydiving and parenting, though, is that with skydiving there is a landing. A finish. A get-up-and-walk-away, ‘Man, what a rush!” moment that lets you brush yourself off, go home and collapse. Sure you can do the same thing with parenting. The collapsing part, anyway. But you hardly ever, from what I’ve heard, feel like you’re finished parenting. Makes me think that Nike’s slogan “There is no finish line” might be better applied to parenting, that crazy, perpetual-forward-motion machine that keeps us hurtling along, taking twists and turns we’d never imagined. And if raising kids isn’t rush enough, there’s always the Marathon des Sables, the six-day ultra marathon across the Sahara Desert. Costing US$4,472 to register, it’s a steal compared to the price tag attached to cost of raising a typical child to age 18 which, according to MoneySense magazine, is roughly $243,660—and that’s not including the cost of post-secondary education, should you decide to seek that thrill.

Fall Programs • Academic assessments • Remedial classes in: Language Arts and Mathematics • Monday to Thursday, starting at 3:30 Locations: Colwood, Sidney and Victoria Learn more: 250-388-7225 or www.readsociety.bc.ca www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  3

IPM Notes Big Brothers Big Sisters Celebrates 100 Years of Service On Tuesday, January 15, 2013, Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Victoria will be hosting a centennial celebration marking 100 years of Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring services in Canada. The event will be held at the Greater Victoria Public Library—Central Branch, from 2:00-3:30pm. Enjoy a performance by the Getting Higher Choir, speeches by Bigs and Littles, and a cake cutting ceremony. Brand new children’s storybooks will be given to families in attendance (while quantities last). For 100 years, BBBS has been making a positive difference in the lives of Canada’s youth by developing and implementing a wide range of mentoring programs. BBBS Canada volunteer mentors teach by example the importance of giving back, of staying in school, and of respecting family, peers and community. Come join us! Our celebration will honour the children and youth with whom we work, their families and the thousands of volunteer mentors who have given their

time to make a difference. We will also be announcing findings from a five-year study of mentoring that tracked the experiences of almost 1,000 children and teenagers registered with BBBS agencies across Canada. For more information on this event and our programs, visit www.bbbsvictoria.com.

Victoria Juggle & Flow Festival The University of Victoria Juggling Club is hosting a weekend-long event from January 18-20 for people to come together and learn, share and display their wild, wonderful and sometimes wacky skills. This festival has 30 workshops and two juggling shows. Do you have your own talent already? Join in for the open mic Renegade Show on Friday and show off your skills! Special guest Komei Aoki from Japan will present his fusion of dance and juggling, a skill that sets him apart from others and the reason he has become an internationally acclaimed performance artist. He will be featured in the Gala show on Saturday night at the Metro in downtown Victoria. The show also features the best of Canadian born and bred West Coast talent. For more details, including directions and performers and a Facebook link, visit web. uvic.ca/~juggling/events/vjf2013.

Eaton Arrowsmith Cognitive Classroom Eaton Arrowsmith School Victoria and The Learning Disabilities Association South Vancouver Island are presenting two opportunities to learn more about the Arrowsmith Program. In over 40 schools across North America, including Eaton Arrowsmith School Victoria, the Arrowsmith Program has helped over 4,000 students with learning disabilities and attention difficulties rewire the weaker cognitive areas of their brain that are the root cause of their academic and social struggles. On Thursday, January 24 from 7-9pm, come and experience a live Arrowsmith Cognitive Classroom Demonstration with Howard Eaton, Director of Eaton Arrowsmith Schools, and Arrowsmith students. On Sunday, January 27 from 7-9pm, take part in An Evening with Barbara Arrowsmith Young, Founder of the Arrowsmith Program and author of The Woman Who Changed Her Brain (www.thewomanwhochangedherbrain.com). Books will be available for purchase and signing. Both events will be at the University of Victoria, A144 MacLaurin Hall, Ring Rd. Come to one or both presentations. Both are free to attend, but donations to the Learning

Happy New Year! January Clearance has begun with

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Disabilities South Vancouver Island will be accepted. RSVP to Sandra Heusel, Eaton Arrowsmith School at sheusel@eatoneducation. com or by calling 604-264-8327. Note: these presentations are not offered or sponsored by the University of Victoria, and the University is not responsible for the content.

Family Theatre Festival Four of Victoria’s most dynamic theatre companies take to the mainstage of Kaleidoscope’s brand new Family Theatre Festival featuring new and exciting work for the whole family. Experience the magic of theatre with Kaleidoscope and the 2013 BC Family Day Family Fun Entertainment, February 8-11, at Berwick House Theatre in Royal Oak. Puente Theatre’s performance of “Gruff” brings to life the classic tale of the troll under the bridge, using a novel mix of puppetry and animation. Feb 9 at 3:30pm, Feb 10 at 2:15pm, Feb 11 at 1pm. Suddenly Dance Theatre presents “Kiki,” the story of a misunderstood girl who loves to hang out in her favourite chair, dreaming up ideas and playing her electric guitar when she’s lonely. Feb 9 at 1pm, Feb 10 at 11:45am, Feb 11 at 3:30pm. Urban Arts presents “Wilde,” the story of a beautiful gold statue-prince who can see ugliness and misery from his high perch above his city. With the help of a little swallow, the statue brings new hope to the people of his beloved city. Feb 9 at 11:45am, Feb 10 at 3:30pm, Feb 11 at 2:15pm. “The Dragon’s Handbook,” presented by Kaleidoscope Theatre, is the story of Brian, who won’t return the dragon’s handbook until the dragon teaches him a trick from it. The dragon has a trick for everything—but Brian soon discovers that a dragon’s tricks can lead to dragon-sized trouble. Feb 9 at 2:15pm, Feb 10 at 1pm, Feb 11 at 11:45am. Tickets are available at the McPherson Box Office by phoning 250-386-6121. For more information, please visit www. kaleidoscope.bc.ca.

Cultivating Tomorrow’s Environmental Leaders Every day in communities across Canada, young people actively demonstrate their passion for the environment through the important work they do. They are emerging as tomorrow’s environmental leaders and advocates. Toyota Canada and the Toyota Canada www.IslandParent.ca

Le français au CSF, c’est bien plus qu’une langue !

Depuis sa création en 1995, le Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique offre des programmes et des services éducatifs valorisant le plein épanouissement et l’identité culturelle des apprenantes et apprenants francophones de la province. Le conseil compte aujourd’hui plus de 4 600 élèves, 36 écoles publiques et dessert plus d’une centaine de communautés réparties dans l’ensemble de la province.

Inscrivez votre enfant dans une école du CSF !

Nos écoles publiques daNs l’île de VaNcouVer Campbell River École Mer-et-montagne École secondaire Phoenix École secondaire Carihi

250-923-3359 1102 South Alder 250-923-3359 400, 7th Ave. 250-923-3359 350 Dogwood St.

M-6 7-9 10 - 12

Comox Valley

École au Cœur-de-l'île

250-339-1848 566 Linshart Rd.

M - 12


École Océane 250-714-0761 1951 Estevan Rd. M - 7 École secondaire de Nanaimo 250-714-0761 355 Wakesiah Ave. 8 - 12

Port Alberni

École des Grands-cèdres

250-723-5614 4645 Helen St.



École Victor-Brodeur

250-220-6010 637 Head St.

M - 12


January 2013


IPM Notes Foundation in partnership with Earth Day Canada established the Toyota Earth Day Scholarship Program to help cultivate and nurture this environmental leadership. The program encourages and rewards graduating Canadian high school students who have distinguished themselves through environmental community service, extracurricular and volunteer activities, and academic excellence. The Earth Day Scholarship is offered to students entering their first year of postsecondary studies in the discipline of their choice, to prepare themselves for the career of their choice. The scholarship grants 20 awards of $5,000 each annually, to be applied directly towards tuition and other educational expenses for the first year of post-secondary full-time studies in Canada. To apply, visit www.earthday.ca/scholarship. The application deadline is February 15, 2013.

off your clothing donations to the main office at 230 Bay Street, or to our donation truck located at 855 Langford Parkway on Saturdays. For more information, please visit www.bbbsvictoria.com.

Noisy Kids Reading Club Volunteers Victoria READ Society is looking for volunteers to help kids read. Noisy Kids Reading Club provides literacy support to struggling readers in Grades two and three. The program runs after school, for 1.5 hours. Each group has a maximum of six kids along with two volunteers and a teacher. Locations: Savory, Millstream, Craigflower, and George Jay elementary schools. Victoria READ Society is a communitybased organziation that helps children, youth and adults gain literacy and basic skills, including reading, writing and mathematics. READ Society responds to the emerging needs of our communities and collaborates to make literacy and basic skills accessible to all. For more information, visit www.readsociety.bc.ca.

Share Some Warmth with Big Brothers Big Sisters

Centre for Child Honouring Partners Launches Internet Safety Campaign

It’s time to clean out your closet! For 33 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) Victoria has been helping children and youth in communities from Sooke to Salt Spring. Big Brothers Big Sisters supports youth in reaching their full potential through mentoring programs. As a not-for-profit organization, BBBS’s ability to help Victoria’s youth is determined by the generosity of donors. Your donations are needed and BBBS asks that you consider giving your time, your financial support and your re-usable clothing and linens. Each of these gifts moves BBBS closer to its goal of providing a mentor for every child who needs one. BBBS volunteers mentor children and youth on a one-to-one basis, meeting weekly with their “little brother” or “little sister.” In each match, the goal is to create a connection that meets the specific needs of the child. BBBS aims to foster confidence and self-esteem through shared activities and consistency of support. Youth who have been mentored are 34 per cent less likely to allow themselves to be victimized or bullied by their peers. Mentored youth simply do better. Last year, 690 children and youth asked Big Brothers Big Sisters for help. The organization matched over 80 per cent of them with a mentor. With your support, BBBS will continue to improve our community, one relationship at a time. Drop

Raffi and the Centre for Child Honouring link with former B.C. Crown Prosecutor Sandy Garossino to launch Red Hood Project, a grassroots movement to make social media safe for young users. They are asking the public to join the call for social media providers to take responsibility for the safety of their products and services. Garossino is a community advocate and business owner. She co-founded Vancouver Not Vegas, a citizens’ coalition that defeated the megacasino planned for downtown Vancouver. “Let’s come together and demand changes to social media services that protect young users,” says Raffi. “The onus on internet safety can’t be left to users. Now’s the time for corporate social media responsibility.” In an open letter to Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, Raffi, Garossino and other signatories urge Facebook to lead the reform in the social media industry by correcting the security failures that allow the online victimization of young people.For more information, contact Sabrina Aven at sabrina@childhonouring.org or by phone at 250-931-3190.

6  Island Parent Magazine

Support for Those With Learning Disabilities The Learning Disabilities Association of BC South Vancouver Island (LDA-SVI) works with students with learning disabili-

ties to assist their learning and help them reach their potential. LDA-SVI currently offers support through academic skills programs, reading and writing programs, and social skills programs. Some of the skills that can positively impact the lives of those with LD are: • Self awareness. An understanding of their strengths and weaknesses (we all have them!). Helping people with LD to recognize their strengths and providing accommodations for their challenges is important for their learning, self-worth and overall well-being. • The ability to compartmentalize their disability so they see their disability as just one aspect of themselves. Think about your own strengths and weaknesses. Now imagine if your identity was largely based on what you can’t do. • The ability to make mistakes. Successful learners are willing to try new things and problem solve. It is crucial that children are taught by example that mistakes are an opportunity to learn, not a sign of failure. • Tolerance for frustration. The ability to set goals and stick to it despite setbacks. Learning can be fun and it can be challenging at times. • Presence of a support network. Never assume a child knows who they can talk to if they need help. Talk with your child about who they can go to for help in their care facilities and schools. • Emotional coping strategies. As with anyone who is experiencing difficulty, children with LD require knowledge and skills to cope with anxiety and frustration and reduce the impact of stress. For more information about how LDA SVI can help your child, visit www.ldasvi. bc.ca.

PreggoPager Test Pilots Pregnant and looking for a quick way to give friends and family labour and birth updates? PreggoPager is looking for 100 couples to beta test the free service that will send your voice message to all your contacts. That way those closest to you stay informed before the news is out on Facebook. Royal Roads University graduate Ben Lee is one of the four co-founders who recently developed the business at Start-up Weekend in Ottawa. Since graduating with his Bachelor of Commerce at Royal Roads, Lee has become an entrepreneur (and expectant father) himself. For more information, visit www.preggopager.com.


Greater Victoria Public Library Books for Babies Survey Since January 2010, the Greater Victoria Public Library (GVPL) has distributed Books for Babies kits to new parents in the Greater Victoria area. The kits are distributed by public health nurses at local health units and by staff at the Greater Victoria Public Library. The kit is in a reusable cloth bag and contains a board book, a music CD, library information, and information for parents about the importance of reading to their infants. Did you receive a GVPL Books for Babies kit? GVPL would like to hear from you! Your feedback will help organizers measure the impact of the program on parents and their babies. Please take a few minutes to fill out the online survey at gvpl.ca/booksforbabies. Call 250-382-7241, ext. 601 if you have any questions.

1000X5: 1000 Books by Age Five Children’s Book Recycling Project In your home, how many baby and preschooler books sit on shelves, tables and under the bed? More than 50? 100? How many times have you read the same story to your little one? More than 10? 25? 50? Congratulations—you are building a love of reading that will last a lifetime. Sadly, many babies and preschoolers in our communities do not have books in their homes and do not build this essential habit in the early years. A literacy-recycling project, 1000X5 Children’s Book Recycling Project, is changing that reality, one book at a time. Gently used picture books for babies and preschoolers are donated by parents at most elementary schools in Victoria, Saanich, and Sooke School districts. Retired teachers and administrators donate time to sort, label, and gift bag those books. The gift bags are delivered to Strong Start Centres and community agencies where families monthly take home three quality books for each child. Over 90,000 books have been distributed. January 27 is National Literacy Day. As well as enjoying a new story with your child, please make an extra effort to contribute to this project. Take a few picture books for babies and preschoolers to your nearest elementary school. Give the gift of literacy. Contact Eileen Eby at eileeneby@shaw. ca in Victoria School District, Daphne Macnaughton at dlmvictoria@shaw.ca in Saanich School District, or Denise Brown at leahybrown@shaw.ca for information on where to leave books or to make a financial contribution (tax receipts available).• www.IslandParent.ca

Late French Immersion Late French Immersion students begin to study French in Grade 6. No prior knowledge of French is expected. By Grade 8, Late French Immersion students have usually achieved a level of fluency equivalent to those in Early Immersion. By graduation, Late Immersion students can qualify for employment in French or study in French at University. Late French Immersion is offered at: • Arbutus Middle • Cedar Hill Middle • Lansdowne Middle • Shoreline Middle

• Central Middle

Late French Immersion is open to any student entering Grade 6 in September 2013. To register your child, go to your nearest Middle School offering Late Immersion during January 28 – February 1, 2013. Interested in Learning More About Late French Immersion? Attend our Information Meeting:

Late French Immersion Information Meeting Monday, January 21, 2013  •  6:30 pm SJ Willis Auditorium, 923 Topaz Ave Simon Burgers, Coordinator, Languages and Multiculturalism, will be pleased to provide you with additional information, 250-475-4120 or sburgers@sd61.bc.ca.

January 2013  7

Happy New Year! Is your child excited to go back to school? NO? If you’re facing temper tantrums, disruptive mornings, frustration and resistance, you are not alone and there is nothing wrong with you, your child or your family. Your child may just learn differently and the school may not recognize this. The situation isn’t hopeless, though. Come check out therapeutic tutoring and see if it will make a difference for you or your child. If you are concerned about the months ahead, come talk to me. I don’t pressure or obligate people and the first lesson is free. One component of teaching differently includes slowing down. Instead of expecting your child to keep up with the curriculum, we adapt the curriculum to each student, allowing their brains to dictate the pace at which they learn. They just need time to absorb, process and gain mastery. Eventually they can and do catch up. Children with a learning difference don’t need small adaptations to their teacher’s teaching style. They need a massive overhaul! These kids need us to teach them the way they need to learn. Often this is diametrically opposed to what we think. What if they need smaller bites in order to learn? What if they need a little bit of practice over a long period of time rather than jamming it into a couple of weeks and moving on? My students work hard but effectively. They learn their lessons, find success and their self-esteem improves. If your child’s learning needs are met, your home can be a calmer, happier place.

Karen Murdoch Therapeutic Tutor Parenting Coach

Phone 778-430-3183 Email info@karenmurdoch.ca Web www.karenmurdoch.ca

8  Island Parent Magazine

Rachel Dunstan Muller

Giving Our Children to the World M

y sister, her husband and I were hiking on the west coast last summer, when the subject of our children’s future came up. I expressed grief that I was passing on a planet in crisis, that my kids would be inheriting the fall-out from climate change, resource limits, and other unprecedented challenges. My brother-in-law’s response was simple but thought-provoking: “We don’t give the world to our children, we give our children to the world.” On the surface, this statement sounded like a quote I might skim over on Facebook, but the more I reflected on it, the more I realized its wisdom. The world isn’t ours to give, either to our children or anyone else. As individuals, we have virtually no control over what the planet will look like next year, in five years, or decades down the road. We can make reducing, reusing and recycling our religion, but unless governments, corporations and everyone else joins in, it won’t alter the world’s fate. Don’t get me wrong—these are still important things. I am a staunch believer in personal responsibility and the power of collective action. I wouldn’t write this column every month if I wasn’t. But I recognize that my own efforts are a drop in the bucket, and will not in themselves change the Earth. What I can influence as a mother are my children’s lives. If that influence contributes to emotionally healthy, well-prepared, thoughtful human beings going out into the world, I will be giving the world a great gift indeed. As parents, surely that’s the most significant contribution we can make—albeit an extremely challenging one! So what does the world need at this critical juncture? What kind of human beings should we be striving to raise? These are huge questions, and I certainly don’t have all the answers. But after much reading and reflection over the last half year, these are some of the traits I think it’s important to pass on to our kids: A deep connection to nature. Thanks largely to the pull of the digital world, our children spend less time outside than any

previous generation. This has dire consequences both on our kids’ health and the health of the planet. Children who spend their lives in front of screens have little investment in the natural world, or in its preservation. Our children need to spend time in wild spaces. They need to gather berries, watch the salmon spawn, and feel dirt between their fingers and toes. It’s never been more urgent that we raise a generation of stewards and healers, but this can only happen if our kids have a real relationship with the natural world.

We can make reducing, reusing and recycling our religion, but unless governments, corporations and everyone else joins in, it won’t alter the world’s fate. Reduced material expectations. For decades we’ve been consuming more “stuff” than we need—until our closets, houses, and landfills are overflowing. For decades we’ve known that our appetite wasn’t sustainable, but we’ve done nothing about it. It’s time to start ramping down, modeling to our kids that less can be more. Less stuff equals less waste, less debt, less clutter, less pollution, less resource depletion, and less exploitation of our neighbours overseas. Less stuff equals more space, more savings, more time for relationships, and more room for creativity. A solid work ethic. We’ve got challenges ahead of us this century, and our kids will fare much better if they know how to roll up their sleeves. Work is one of the good four-letter words. It can be deeply satisfying and empowering when we turn it to good purposes, beginning with meeting our most basic needs. Conversely, what our children don’t need is a sense of entitlement. An


inflated sense of entitlement is how North Americans came to be the greatest consumers and wasters on the planet. Hands-on skills. We have become a very dependent culture—money buys us everything we need or desire. As a result, we’ve lost many basic skills: growing, raising and preserving our own food; making clothing and other necessities; improvising what we want from what we already have. At the very least these would be useful and productive hobbies to learn and pass on to our children. And in the event of an emergency or crisis, these skills would make us a lot less vulnerable. The ability to think critically. To deal with the issues this century is bringing, our children will need to know how to think. They’ll need the skills to look past headlines, and to see through advertising campaigns. They’ll need to know how to ask questions, and cross-examine the answers. Given the current state of our mainstream culture, this one is going to be a challenge. “C”qualities. Courage, compassion, cooperation and creativity—these are good qualities to promote in our children at any time, but they will be particularly valuable in the challenging decades ahead. A realistic vision of the future. This is the one I struggle with. Climate change is scary. Peak oil* is scary. But we don’t have a crystal ball to see how the future will unfold, and I for one don’t want to alarm anyone unnecessarily. I certainly don’t want to make my youngest children fearful, or overwhelm or depress my young adult daughters. Still, I’m convinced these issues are going to profoundly impact their future lives, and I want them to be prepared. My compromise for the moment is to focus on the list of items above this one. If my kids are empowered and ready for anything, we don’t need to dwell on the frightening “what-ifs.” The above list is of course just the beginning. Figuring out how to actually encourage these traits and skills in our children is where the real work lies! *Richard Heinberg’s very thoughtful talks on peak oil and peak everything are available on YouTube, including one he recently gave at UBC. His books are also available through the library. But be warned: while Heinberg’s manner is gentle and intelligent, the subject is a heavy one.

COMPREHENSIVE FAMILY DENTISTRY family centered practice extended hours evenings and weekends the latest equipment and caring staff request an appointment online

saanichdentalgroup.com 119–1591 McKenzie Ave, Victoria

250 477 7321


Rachel Dunstan Muller is the mother of five, and a children’s author. Her previous articles can be found at www.islandparent.ca.


January 2013


Janine Fernandes-Hayden

Moderate Pa r e n t I n g Finding the Right Balance F

or me, life as a parent feels like a constant tug-of-war against a world of “too much.” At Christmas, our tree is smothered by a glut of presents from family and friends, transforming my children into glassy-eyed assembly line workers with their hands at the ready, calling out “Next.” Plastic toys collect dust in my basement while my children contentedly play upstairs with blankets and cardboard boxes. My freezer is chock full with surplus Easter chocolate. I convince myself that I will someday use it for baking because I feel too guilty about throwing it all away. At Halloween, generous neighbours dole out candy by the handfuls, leaving me with the unpopular task of finding tricks to make the treats disappear. My children’s closets are stacked with bins of clothes that they never wear because, despite my best attempts, they are creatures of habit who cycle through the same four pairs of pants and three shirts week after week. It is easy to get pulled across the center line by the power of “excess.” I have to remind myself to ask often, “How much and what do my children really need?”


Island Parent Magazine


And I’m not just talking about stuff. I resist the pressure of numerous play dates with the rationalization that my children already spend 80 per cent of their time with their friends when they are at school. I limit extracurricular activities, because I believe in protecting my children’s unstructured space and family time, but also because, with four children, there is only so much time and money. We don’t watch TV. We use our cell phone only when we travel. We have sugar only on Tuesdays and weekends. And all the while, I question myself, “What I am doing to my children?” It seems like every kid and their dog get sugary treats in their lunch boxes, have iPads or are involved in Brownies or soccer. Everyone, that is, except my children. I should feel confident and secure with my choices as a parent but instead I am plagued by doubts, apprehension, and the fear that my children will grow to be outcasts, socially awkward Luddites with sugar tremours. I want my children to be happy but I often have to stop and deconstruct what “happy” really means—to them and to me. I am grateful for the bounty in my life but the superfluity makes me feel nauseated. I fear that my children will grow up with a sense of entitlement. Beyond this, keeping up with societal and peer pressure and certain levels of expectation exerts an awful lot of undue guilt and stress on me. I remember my parents driving across Calgary one Christmas Eve on icy roads and in -25˚F weather, utterly desperate to find an Optimus Prime Transformer for my brother. I recall the anxiety of that night, worried and frightened about whether my parents would make it back home. I can’t imagine how they were likely feeling. What would have been the worst to happen if they had simply decided “No”? Why is it such a hard word to say? Everything in moderation seems like a wise mantra to live by. Moderation leads to lives that are not deprived, but that are balanced, responsible and sustainable. It buffers us from being constantly overwhelmed and the angst of excess, and it assures us that we have enough. It also protects us from being vulnerable to addictive pulls. Over the Christmas and summer holidays when I was old enough to stay at home alone while my parents worked, I watched afternoon soap operas. It was a marathon, except with no cardio benefits. I started with “Days of Our Lives” at 1 p.m. and ended with “The Young and The Restless” at 5 p.m. I didn’t enjoy it, I wouldn’t call it fun. It was a way www.IslandParent.ca

& The place online where parents and grandparents get information about their community for their family: Read current and past issues of Island Parent Magazine. Visit our Marketplace to find businesses, programs and services that cater to the little person in your life. Looking for that special something you had when you were a kid? Check out our classified ads. Want to see what’s up today or this weekend? View our calendar of events. Whether it’s dance lessons, parenting workshops, fun days and festivals, what’s happening at your local rec centre or community events—Kids In Victoria has it all! Maybe you are looking for something to engage your mind or perhaps need a little bit of advice. Well we have that too on our community forum. Receive Island Parent & Kids In Victoria e-newsletter for updates and exclusive contests. You can also enter our monthly and photo contests.

Come be part of our community at


January 2013


of numbing my boredom and, in fact, it left me feeling even more lethargic and unmotivated. It was an addiction. In hindsight, I recognize that moderation might have led to some reasonable boundaries as well as some equilibrium in terms of outside time and exercise. I try to see moderation not as a battle between good and bad or right and wrong which leaves me feeling guilty, but more as a bridge between well-intentioned virtues—for example, promoting appreciation and thankfulness for life’s pleasures while inspiring self-regulation and self-discipline. So what does moderation look like in our home? • While we don’t have TV, we do have a VCR. Every Tuesday after school is “Special Video Day,” and Saturday night is “Family Movie Night.” We look forward to these days and make them extra special by making the den cozy, perhaps lighting a fire, dimming the lights and, best of all, indulging in salted buttery popcorn. • I allow my seven-year-old limited slots of time for “Starfall,” a fun and free online reading program. My other children are too young and, though they protest, they will get their chance.

• Every week, when it comes to grocery shopping, each of my children gets to make one healthy request. For example, depending on the season, my son will inevitably choose corn on the cob, my eldest, raspberries, and my middle, peaches. Also, if they are my one grocery shopping helper for that day, they can choose a special treat to be shared with the rest of the family—sometimes it is YOP yogurt drinks, chocolate milk, a chocolate bar to split or even Foot-Long Fruit Roll-Ups. • After a conversation with her healthconscious aunt, my eldest formed the “No Sugar Club.” As a family we have agreed to reserve our sugar consumption for Tuesdays and weekends (there are other exceptions such as special occasions and when company is visiting!). We exercise much restraint and self-discipline for the rest of the week, under the scrupulous watch of my daughter, but come those days, particularly Saturdays and Sundays, we enjoy waffles with tons of maple syrup, nibbling on leftover Halloween candy and flipping through recipe books for decadent desserts that we can prepare together for our evening meal. While my children do receive presents of toys and clothes, we try when we can to

Big Brothers Big Sisters changes lives.

give them “experience gifts,” for example, tickets to go see the Nutcracker or a special birthday weekend in Victoria. With my efforts, my hope is that my children see the “stuff” not in isolation but within the context of rituals, traditions, family and meaningful connections. I wish I had it completely figured out, but I don’t think I’m there yet. Last month, as we deliberated my son’s Christmas present, my husband, in all seriousness, suggested, “Why don’t we give him a large cardboard refrigerator box?” I know my son would be absolutely thrilled so why couldn’t I do it? My children are fortunate. They live in a wealthy and educated country, on a unique island that provides them with rich life experiences and in a family that shows absolutely no moderation when it comes to love. What else could they possibly need? Janine Fernandes-Hayden is an educator, trained Virtues Project facilitator, and Salt Spring Island mum of four children. She hosts a parent and kids radio show called “The Beanstalk” on Salt Spring Island airwaves at CFSI 107.9 FM.

And so do your donations. More than 600 local children and youth reach out to Big Brothers Big Sisters each year to ask for help from a mentor. We support children in building confidence, resiliency and self-esteem while learning to succeed in school, at home, and in our community.

Want to make a difference? Support our work by donating your used clothing and linens.

Drop off your used clothing donations to: Our Truck at Canadian Tire or 855 Langford Pwy Saturdays 11am-3pm

Our Main Office 230 Bay St Mon-Fri 9am-7pm 250-385-7226

For more information, visit: www.bbbsvictoria.com 12  Island Parent Magazine


Jerri Carson

 Ready, Set, Learn Open House

West Coast introduce Winter yourself W

inter! What sounds do you think of when you hear that word? Winter brings a unique set of sounds on our west coast beginning with wind and rain that announce winter is on its way, followed by raging windstorms that loudly proclaim winter has officially arrived. So, let winter begin! Sit back with a cup of hot chocolate and enjoy the sounds that surround you. If you are not quite ready for the cold weather, this eclectic list of wintry sounds will fill your soul with fond, gentle memories of winter, even when the temperature is hovering near zero and the wind is whipping through the trees. 1. The wind whistling through the trees and around the eaves of the house. Just knowing that you are safe inside and cannot feel its icy breath makes the wind a heartwarming sound. 2. The swishing sound of boot-clad feet walking through leaf strewn streets. 3. The crackling and sparking of a hearth fire. Share the warmth with your family over a big bowl of freshly popped popcorn. 4. The pitter-patter of raindrops on your umbrella during a walk outside. 5. Chipmunks and squirrels chattering and scampering as they search for nuts and seeds. 6. The ocean waves crashing on the beach during a windstorm. 7. The cheeping and fluttering of chickadees and sparrows around a bird feeder. 8. A woodpecker drumming and tapping in the woods. Or, in the distance you may hear the hoot of a snowy owl with his proverbial question, “Who-who-who?” 9. The low, deep warning sound of a distant foghorn. 10. Of course, the best sound of winter is really not a sound at all. Stand still amongst the trees in the woods and listen to the surrounding silence. Peace.

Parents and preschoolers (3 years and up) are invited to visit their neighbourhood school. ♦ ♦ ♦

Participate in hands-on learning activities. Tour the school. Learn ways to help your child get a great start for kindergarten.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013 3:15 — 6:00 pm Join us at your neighbourhood school. Brentwood Elementary 250 652 3996 Cordova Bay Elementary 250 658 5315 Deep Cove Elementary 250 656 7254 Keating Elementary 250 652 9261

KELSET Elementary 250 655 4648 Lochside Elementary 250 658 5238 Prospect Lake Elementary 250 727 3314 Sidney Elementary 250 656 3958


Every success for every child www.sd63.bc.ca We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Education.

Jerri Carson is a primary music teacher for SD #61. She is a member of the CRD Arts Advisory Council. Jerri plays the cello in the Victoria Conservatory Cello Orchestra.


January 2013


Literacy Begins at Home R


Find out why 92.4% of SMUS parents give our academic program a grade of A or A+.

At SMUS, we provide a safe, nurturing environment that supports discovery and learning. We’re committed to academic excellence, and also expose our students to exceptional athletics, performing arts, outdoor education and extracurricular programs. Together, we can help your child thrive and go on to achieve great things.

Friday Feb. 15th

9-11am & 1-3pm

Junior School (Kindergarten to Grade 5) 820 Victoria Avenue Middle School (Grades 6-8) Senior School (Grades 9-12) 3400 Richmond Road


D AY G R A D E S K -12 | B O A R D I N G G R A D E S 8 -12 14  Island Parent Magazine


esearch shows that children raised in literate households are likely to enter Grade 1 with several thousand hours of one-­to-­one pre-­reading experience behind them, so it’s important to ensure learning takes place in the home and starts at an early age. Parents lead busy lives and may not have much time to read a bedtime story to their children. Luckily, there are so many learning opportunities that happen in our day-to-­day lives—fun, easy activities that are part of our daily routines and don’t feel like learning. ABC Life Literacy Canada offers 10 fun and easy ways to make literacy part of your family’s daily life. 1. When making your grocery list, have your child write out the items you need to buy. 2. At the store, ask your child to count out the money to make the purchase. 3. Make it a habit to always read a story together at bedtime. 4. When cooking dinner, involve your children in measuring the ingredients. This helps them understand fractions and measurements. 5. Driving is the perfect opportunity to practice literacy. Read signs, billboards and licence plates together, and show your children the proper way to read a map. 6. While on the Internet, research something new that your family is interested in. Researching skills are important and help with reading and comprehension. 7. In the car, sing along to songs on the radio. Singing encourages learning patterns of words, rhymes and rhythms, and is strongly connected to language skills. 8. When playing a board game, read the instructions aloud to each other or count how many spaces to travel around the board. 9. Involve your kids when you pay bills. This will teach them strong financial skills early on in life. 10. Children follow by example, so ensure learning is part of your daily life, too! For more information on literacy in Canada, visit www.abclifeliteracy.ca.



January 2013  15

© John Marriott (Canada) Fluff up

Social Media Know-How C

hildren and teens are creating and sharing information more than ever using digital media such as cell phones, smart phones, and computers. They send text messages, use Facebook and Twitter, write blogs, share photos and video to stay in touch with friends and family and to make new friends. Social media offers lots of opportunity to help your child and teen be creative and stay connected and informed. But it’s important to learn about the different technologies and how your children use them so you can help keep them safe online. To that end, the Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) offers the following information and tips. The social media landscape changes quickly. Because this is only an introduction, CPS links to other websites you might find helpful.

What is social media?

l1 pri

A ses


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16  Island Parent Magazine

Social media refers to the online tools that connect people with common interests on the Internet. Unlike traditional media (TV, radio, newspapers and so on), social media allows users to interact with each other. Popular social networking websites include Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, and MySpace.

There are many different ways that people use social media: Online profiles: Most social media sites require users to set up a profile. A profile usually includes a name, e-mail address, birth date, interests and a photo. Friends: Depending on the kind of social media, users “follow” or “request friends” from people they know such as classmates or family. They may also use social media sites to find and meet new friends. Messaging: Sending short text messages over the Internet, using instant messaging and between cell phones. Walls and boards: Social media sites allow people to post or send messages in many different ways. On Facebook, for example, information is posted to a “wall.” Some messages are visible to a wider audience, while others can be sent privately like e-mail.

Photo and video sharing: Social networking sites allow users to upload personal photos and videos. Some sites, such as Flickr for photos and YouTube for videos, are used solely to share images. Blogs: A blog is a website kept by an individual who updates it with regular entries of text or photos and videos. It is a lot like a journal, only on the web. People who read blogs can comment and share published content among their own online networks. Joining groups: Many kinds of social media allow users to create groups. People join, “like” or follow these groups to get access to information and have conversations with other members. To play games: Children and teens visit online sites to play games, alone or with their friends. Some, like Facebook, include free online gambling applications.

How can I keep my children safe using social media? Learn about the technologies your children and teens are using. Ask how they communicate with friends online. Tell them that you are willing and interested to learn about it. Keep computers in common areas where you can watch while your children use them. Be clear about the rules for using the computer and set limits on the amount of time and how they can be used. Set limits on cell and smart phone use. Talk about when it’s a good time to use a cell phone. Your child or teen’s school, for example, likely has rules about where and when they can or can’t be used. Teach them the value of “unplugging” from devices and computers for technologyfree time. Reinforce that no e-mail or message is so important that it can’t wait until the morning. Get online protection for your family. Programs that provide parental controls can block websites, enforce time limits, monitor the websites your child visits, and their online conversations. Tell your children and teens that you are monitoring their online activity. Be aware that some parent control www.kidsinvictoria.com

programs will block information about puberty and sexuality that you might want your teen to look for. Ask your children and teens about the people they “meet” online. Showing genuine interest will help them feel comfortable talking about it. Explain that it’s easy for someone on the Internet to pretend to be someone they are not. Discuss what’s okay and safe to post online and what isn’t. People can’t always control the information others post about them. Explain that information and photos available online can turn up again years later. Ask your children and teens where else they access the Internet. Talk to teachers, caregivers and other parents about your rules for social media. Because people are not always who they pretend to be online, talk about the importance of keeping online friendships in the virtual world and how it can be dangerous to meet online friends face-to-face. Make it clear that if your child wants to meet a virtual friend in person, it must be with a trusted adult. If your child or teen is playing online games, join them (even if only to sit and watch) so you can see exactly what they are doing and talk to them about it.

What should I know about online privacy? Social media websites have privacy policies and settings, but they are all different. Some sites are completely public, meaning that anyone can read or look at anything, anytime. Other sites let you control who has access to your information. Read a website’s privacy policy before providing any personal information. Some social media websites, like Facebook for example, don’t allow children under 13 to join their site. Check your child’s privacy policy settings to make sure he isn’t sharing more information than you want.

Tips to help your children protect their online privacy: For some social media sites it is a good idea to choose an online nickname, instead of using a real name. Keep everything password protected, and change passwords often. Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know in real life. Think carefully about what you post online. Remember: things that are posted online stay online forever. As a general rule, www.IslandParent.ca

Making Music Happen A foundation in music is one of the most valuable things a child can learn. Music facilitates cognitive skills, increases self-esteem and foster positive social interaction. Discover the many creative and innovative VCM Children’s Music Programs including some fun new classes! • NEW! After School Lessons (7 to 10 years)

Find out more about after-school care programs with piano, guitar and violin lessons

• NEW! Jazz Minors (7 to 10 years) • NEW! Your Body is….An Instrument (7 to 10 years) • Tunes for Pocket Trumpet (7 to 11 years) • It’s Show Time! Musical Theatre (6 to 12 years) • Colourstrings (Birth to 5 years) • Orff Music Program (Birth to 9 years) • Families Making Music (Babies to 5 years)

PLUS! Pro-D Music Discovery Camps (5 to 12 years)

Only two camps left! Featuring different themes with musical games, song, dance and a mini-musical theatre production! Register now for Pro-D Camps on Feb 15 and May 17, 2013. Johanne Brodeur, Department Head Phone: 250.386.5311 ext. 1030; Email: brodeur@vcm.bc.ca


900 Johnson at Quadra • 250.386.5311 • www.vcm.bc.ca

January 2013  17




don’t post anything you wouldn’t want a parent or teacher to see or read. Remember to protect a friend’s privacy too. Ask permission before posting something about a friend, a photo or a video. Be aware of what your friends are posting about you. If you use a GPS-enabled smart phone or a digital camera, you could be posting status updates, photos and videos with geotags. Geotags provide the exact location of where your photo was taken. Make sure these are turned off on your device.

What is cyber-bullying? Just as some people are bullied in real life, people are bullied online. It happens many ways: by sending mean messages by e-mail or posting them in an online forum or by sharing photos and videos without permission. Talk to your children about cyberbullying. If it isn’t too serious, suggest that they ignore it at first. If it doesn’t stop, is violent or sexually explicit or your child gets scared, encourage them to talk to you or another trusted adult. The Media Awareness Network has some more information on cyber-bullying at: www. bewebaware.ca/english/cyberbullying.html

What is sexting?

For More Information Visit

WWW.KALEIDOSCOPE.BC.CA 18  Island Parent Magazine

Sexting is a term used to describe sending sexually explicit messages, photos or videos between cell phones. It can also happen using e-mail or on social media websites. Ask your teen what she knows about sexting. Talk about the dangers of sexting. Remind her that words and photos posted online can easily be shared among many different people. Remind your teen that nothing is ever really deleted online. Friends, enemies, parents, teachers, coaches, strangers, and potential employers can find past postings. Other resources: • Be Web Aware (www.bewebaware.ca), Media Awareness Network • My Privacy, My Choice, My Life (www. youthprivacy.ca), a resource for children and teens about online privacy by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. • Web safety (www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/is-si/ index-eng.htm), a resource by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) For more information, visit Canadian Paediatric Society’s website at www.caringforkids.ca. www.kidsinvictoria.com

Montessori Education Nurtures a Lifelong Love of Learning

Independence Self-Discipline

Concentration Social Skills

Self-motivation Higher level thinking skills

  ALL DAY KINDERGARTEN?  We’ve been doing it for 30 years at Selkirk Montessori! 

 

We also offer outstanding Montessori half-day kindergarten, preschool, elementary and middle school programs.

Open House

Thursday, January 17th or to For information, 5:30 – 8:30 pm arrange a tour of our facility, call Penny Barner 2970 Jutland 250-384-3414 or email Victoria,atBC


office @selkirkmontessori.ca

Discover Montessori School MUSIC LANGUAGES PHYSICAL 4355 Jingle Pot Road, Nanaimo u



Primary Programs Elementary Programs AMI Certified Teachers

Phone: 250-760-0615

www.discovermontessorischool.org 4075 Metchosin Rd • Victoria • Tel:250-474-2626 www.west-mont.ca • E-Mail: info@west-mont.ca

Open House & Art Show Tours Entertainment Refreshments

February 2, 2013 10am-3pm All Are Welcome!

  

Come to our Open House and see what makes us special: WHEN :

Thursday, January 17 th


5:30-8:30 pm


Selkirk Montessori School, 2970 Jutland Road (at the Selkirk Waterfront Development)

With an enriched program incorporating French, Japanese, Mandarin and Spanish language instruction, music, skating, swimming and rowing, Selkirk Montessori is an exceptional, affordable alternative in a diverse, caring school community.



Established 1978

Offering Half-day Preschool & Half-day or Full-day Kindergarten Please call for a visit & tour! Phone: 250-595-3213 E-mail: stcms@shaw.ca 2619 Currie Road, Victoria, B.C., V8S 3S9 www.stcmsoakbaybc.com

ST. CHRISTOPHER’S Victoria Montessori Preschool MONTESSORI SCHOOL 750 Front Established 1978 Street - Victoria - 250.380.0534



Offering Half-day Preschool & OPEN Kindergarten HOUSE Half-day or Full-day th Monday, February 18

Please call 6:00pm for a visit & tour! – 8:00pm

Phone: 250-595-3213 E-mail: stcms@shaw.ca 750 Front 2619 Currie Road, Victoria, B.C., V8S 3S9 www.stcmsoakbaybc.com


Our environment stimulates creative thinking and intellectual growth

ST. CHRISTOPHER’S The Vancouver Island Montessori AssociationMONTESSORI (VIMA) and theSCHOOL University of Victoria Established 1978to be held at UVic are proud to co-sponsor a public lecture by Dr. Steven Hughes on the evening of Thursday, April 25th entitled


Offering Half-day Preschool

& Educational Frameworks, Essential Cognitive Functions, Half-day or Full-day Kindergarten and the Future of Education Please call for a visit & tour!

Dr. Hughes is a pediatric Neuropsychologist and a Montessori Phone: parent. 250-595-3213 E-mail: stcms@shaw.ca He is an international speaker on the neurodevelopmental benefits of classical Montessori education. 2619 Currie Road, Victoria, B.C., V8S 3S9

Visit a Montessori school today.




January 2013  19

Offering Half-day Preschool


Winter Programs From art classes to wellness programs—and everything in between—our community offers an array of programs, resources and services for families. To find out what’s available, read on. (For more details on the following listings, please refer to the ads in this issue of Island Parent).

Art 4Cats is a professional arts studio for artists ages 2-15. 4Cats kids take inspiration from the works of famous artists and create imaginative works using professionalquality art materials, including acrylics on canvas, palette knives, and pottery wheels. Highly trained 4Cats curators are dedicated to cultivating the child’s natural ability to see and think like an artist. Curators tell captivating and inspiring stories about the life and work of the artist being introduced. 4Cats offers Artist Focus classes, birthday parties, workshops, camps and more. www.4Cats.com

Artistic Statement Gallery & School of Fine Art offers fun and educational courses in drawing, painting, sculpture and cartooning for children and adults. Emphasis is placed on technique and everyone works at their own level. Class size is kept to a maximum of 7 to allow for individual instruction. Portfolio preparation is offered for college or university entrance for qualification in a variety of degree programs with an acceptance rate of 95 per cent. Call Joan at 250-383-0566. Below the Oak Bay Bistro at 107-2250 Oak Bay Avenue. www.artisticstatementgalleryandschool.com. Art classes at Art Gallery of Greater Victoria are the ideal place for children to explore visual culture and express their own creative vision! Students experience a full “art immersion,” visiting current exhibitions to inspire their creations in the studio. This winter, we offer a variety of morning and afternoon classes, and will again be offering a March Break camp. To register, call 250-384-4171 ext. 0, or visit in person 1040

Moss Street. Class schedule and newsletter are available online: aggv.ca/education/ studio-classes.

Dance/Drama/Performing Art Kaleidoscope Performing Arts Studio. No matter your age or experience, Kaleidoscope has a theatre class for you: Acting Basis, Advanced Acting, Acting Master Class, Musical Theatre, Dynamic Drama, Broadway Dance, and more. Term 2 classes begin Jan 15, 2013. After selling out in 2012 Kamp Kaleidoscope returns for 2013 (March 18-22, 2013) with 5 days and 4 nights of theatrical wilderness fun at Camp Qwanoes. For more info & to register: contact us at (250) 383-8124 or info@kaleidoscope.bc.ca www.kaleidoscope.bc.ca Kate Rubin Theatre & Drama Studio offers young people 5-18 years old with a dramatic interest or passion the opportunity to creatively explore and develop their skills. Kate and her staff have extensive training and experience in the dramatic arts. Students are encouraged to develop individual and group skills in movement, voice, dramatic techniques and performance skills. Ben-

Gulf Islands Film & Television School

Special Spring Break Junior & Youth Camps* March 11–16, 18–23 or 25–30 One-week Media Intensive Camps* no experience necessary Two-week Directors Camps* prerequisite required Choose from: Dramatic Video Production, Visual Effects & Animation, Acting on Camera, Game Design, YouTube Production, and more…

Mention this ad and receive

$200 OFF Tuition! Valid until January 31, 2013. Junior age 11–14, youth age 14–18.

Register at  www.GIFTSfilms.com  gifts@giftsfilms.com  1.800.813.9993 20  Island Parent Magazine


efits include improved acting skills, confidence, creative thinking, public speaking, creative collaboration, and versatility in physical, vocal and emotional expression. 250-386-8593. www.katerubintheatre. com. katerubin@telus.net. facebook.com/ KateRubinTheatre. Lighthouse Academy of Dance provides a pure, pleasing, positive experience for leisure and serious students from 2-102. Classes in ballet, modern theatre dance, jazz and lyrical, tap, creative dance and musical theatre (song & dance) are taught by qualified and experienced professionals. Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and ISTD exam courses available. Parties for adults and children. Private lessons. Former students are now professional performers and teachers. Royal Roads and Blanshard locations. www.lighthouseacademyofdance.com. StageCoach Langford. Creating a safe environment for children to grow, gain confidence and train to perform better in life. We deliver quality performance arts training while ensuring that each child receives an exceptional experience in a safe, secure environment. Stagecoach Theatre Arts have been nurturing and developing young people’s creative potential for over 21 years around the world. Weekend classes for 4 to 16 year olds in Langford. Email: langford@stagecoachschools.ca and visit www.stagecoachschools.ca/langford. Since 1980, STAGES Performing Arts School has offered professional instruction in jazz, ballet, lyrical, tap, musical theatre and hip hop for all ages and levels of experience. We believe that all students should have an equal opportunity to learn in a safe, non-competitive environment, which fosters self-expression, a healthy body, confidence, and encourages responsibility, discipline, inspiration, creativity and pride in their accomplishments. For more information, please call STAGES at 250-384-3267 or visit www.stagesdance.com. Victoria Academy of Dramatic Arts. Kid’s Programs: 7-9 years, Saturday January 19 to February 9, 1:30-4:00pm. Cost: $134.40. 10-12 years, Wednesday January 16 to February 6 4:00-6:00pm. Cost: $134.40. 13-15 years, Thursday January 17 to February 7, 4:00-6:00pm. Cost: $134.40. Special Event! Audition Workshop with Jacqui Kaese Sat January 12. 8-11 years: 11:00am-1:00pm,


Cost: $56; 12-15 years, 2:00-5:00pm, Cost: $67. Spring Break Kids Camps March 18 – 22. Go to www.vadarts.com to register.

Gymnastics Victoria Gymnastics continues to provide Greater Victoria with gymnastics instruction that is safe, well-structured, and most importantly, fun. Our 7,200 sq. ft. facility, which is naturally lighted and acoustically insulated, provides a learning environment that will allow children to maximize their potential as they move through our noncompetitive skills development program structure. Boys and girls ages 2-17, beginner through advanced, all benefit from the strength and flexibility that gymnastics develops. Visit www.victoriagymnastics.com.

Mid-Island Toddler Tunes and Family Music at Arbutus Music! Music is proven to help children start their school years successfully by introducing problem solving and language arts skills. Arbutus Music’s instructor Susan Schleppe taught Kindermusic for 12 years... now she joins Arbutus Music to make music for kids and parents a great way to spend the day. Call now to reserve, 250-933-1900, or email lessons@arbutusmusic.com. View all Arbutus Music programs online at www. arbutusmusic.com. Parent and child program offered at Morning Glory School, Qualicum Beach, Thursday mornings 9:30-11:30. Led by Jennifer Stevens ECE and Waldorf Early Childhood Educator for parents, or caregivers, and young children. Enjoy crafts, bread making, songs, childcare and parenting information as the group follows the rhythm of the seasons. This is a wonderful, gentle introduction for little ones to their first group experience in a warm and nurturing Waldorf environment. Drop-in fee $5, or $30 for 8 weeks. For more information or to register, please call 250-752-2722 or visit www.morninggloryschool.ca.

Music Guitar in Motion is a small local outfit bringing lessons right to your door. No more worries about drop-offs and pick-ups, or bringing

the other kids along in tow. We show up, teach, and leave… it’s that simple! A great service for adults wanting to learn, too. Lessons are available to all age groups, at all levels, in a wide range of styles. Call Steve to see when we’re in your area. Special introductory rate for home-schoolers. 250- 217-2316. www.guitarinmotion.com. The Tom Lee Music Learning Centre at Millstream Village offers lessons for all ages in piano, guitar, keyboard, bass, drums, voice, theory, strings, brass and woodwinds. Learning to play music is a life-changing skill that is also great fun. From the hobbyist to the advanced student, we strive to make music education accessible and enjoyable with a sense of accomplishment at every level. Please call 250-383-5222 for more information. The Victoria Children’s Choir has an exciting winter performance program. On February 13-16 it is featured in two Benjamin Britten children’s operas staged by Pacific Opera Victoria at Saint John the Divine Church, and on February 23 the VCC will perform in a concert of the music of Purcell as the guest of the Pacific Baroque Festival in the Alix Goolden Hall. For more information please consult the VCC website: www. victoriachildrenschoir.ca. Considering music lessons for yourself or your child? Start the New Year off right and enroll at the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Our amazing teachers are committed to providing students with an inspirational environment where creativity and artistic expression is always encouraged. Register now for fun group classes and individual lessons at any level—from beginner to emerging professionals, to adult amateurs. Learn more by calling 250-386-5311, or visit vcm.bc.ca. Ask about taking a free sample lesson! Viva Youth Choirs – for all singers aged 7-17. Viva is accepting new singers in January 2013. In their 25th year, the Viva Youth choirs, under the direction of Nicholas Fairbank and Conductor Sarah Quartel, is welcoming children to join them at Viva’s choral location: 1273 Fort Street (across from Central Middle School). We have recently introduced a new vocal ensemble for young men aged 15-23+ conducted by Nicholas Fairbank. Experience exciting and educational performance opportunities. www.vivachoirs.ca. January 2013  21

Come Join the Fun

Year-Round Programs • Year round lessons for children and adults • Safe well schooled lesson horses with qualified instructors • Indoor and outdoor riding facility



Parent Education/Programs Karen Murdoch, therapeutic tutor and certified Erickson Coach, is offering coaching for parents whose children are struggling at school. You’ll discover how to help your child have more success. You will find solutions to help their self-esteem improve. You know your child’s unique learning style best. Karen is excited because she gets results by helping parents like you find your own creative solutions. For more information and a complimentary session, with no obligation, call Karen. 778-430-3183. karenmurdoch.ca. Lifeseminars.com will give you the details you need to view the selection of courses including the very popular Wednesday night programs. New seminars include an evening course for professionals and daytime classes for parents. Our books, Sidestepping the Power Struggle and The Parent Child Connection, are available for purchase through the site, Bolen Books and Munro’s. 250-595-2649.

Recreation Cedar Hill Recreation and Arts Centre provides unique state-of-the-art spaces, studios and programs. We offer a wide range of classes and drop-ins for all ages, including sports, arts, pottery, dance, fitness, tennis, squash, badminton, table tennis and rehabilitation. Enjoy the Gallery Café, free of charge art exhibitions, and Golf Course chip trails while using the facility. Give Cedar Hill Recreation Centre a call today for details on classes and how to register 250-475-7121 or visit www.recreation.saanich.ca.

Victoria & Vancouver Island 1-866-518-7287 Nanaimo 250-756-9794 Or online at: www.welcomewagon.ca

This winter the City of Victoria offers a range of programs just for you or for your entire family. Sign up for private swimming lessons, Spring Break Camp or try Indoor Kayaking. Hire a personal trainer or take an aquafit class. Arena programs are ongoing at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre with lessons for all levels as well as a range of public skating sessions. Call 250-3610732 for arena information. You can find more information on program registration and schedules for all our services on our website www.victoria.ca/recservices or call 250-361-0732.

You’ve seen Bruce Lee in movies, magazines and television, but now you can learn to fight like the man right here in Victoria. Eke Academy of Martial Arts has opened its doors specializing in the JKD techniques popularized by the late martial arts superstar as well as a curriculum of kickboxing, grappling and the Filipino and Malaysian martial arts of Kali and Silat. Classes are open for kids and adults now. www.EkeAcademy.com or info@ekeacademy.com. Gordon Head Recreation Centre. Facility highlights include our dance/fitness studio, weight room, multi-purpose space, 25 meter pool, hot tub, sauna and more. New for Sept. 2013 is our full year Nature Preschool, taking place at and in partnership with Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary, the focus is on learning in, about, for and from the natural world. We’ve also expanded our popular full year Exploring Our World preschool program, including Tues/Thur French, Mon/ Wed Music/Dance and a Friday Gym and Swim option. GR Pearkes Recreation Centre partners with Colquitz School, Saanich Neighbourhood Place, the Centennial Public Library, Tillicum Centre and others. The facility houses a huge trade show facility, two ice rinks, classrooms, dance studio, weight room, and a teen lounge. We offer classes in dance, skating, woodworking, preschool, indoor cycling and aerobics. Come for a visit at 3100 Tillicum Road beside Silver City. Lots of free parking, or we are on bus routes #21, #22, and #26. See www.saanich.ca for more information Pacific Coast Swimming. In the Lightning Fast Swim Series, children learn to swim… fast! The unique skills program in the Lightning Fast Program allows children age 3+ to learn to be efficient in the water in all aspects while gaining fitness and having fun. Come join the sport of swimming. Available at Esquimalt Rec, Commonwealth Place, Oak Bay Rec, Panorama and UVic (including Ian Stewart complex in the summer). For information on the Lightning Fast Swim Series or our competitive levels, contact us at pacificcoastswimming.com. 250-727-9243. Pacific Coast Swimming, home of 2012 Olympic Bronze Medalist Richard Weinberger. Saanich Commonwealth Place: Aside from all the fun you can have with your little ones in

22  Island Parent Magazine


our pools we also offer a great selection of parent and tot preschool programs in our toy filled fun activity rooms. Why get messy at home when you and come and paint, glue and explore your creative and adventurous side with us. We also have drop in Kindergym Tues, Thurs and Sunday mornings to run off some steam. For a complete listing of programs visit www.sannich.ca/parkrec or call 250-475-7600. Sportball helps children develop physically, mentally and socially through a curriculum designed to reinforce self-confidence, free from the pressure of competition. Working with children 16 months to 12 years old in a high-energy, fun-filled curriculum, Sportball provides the basic concepts and skills behind eight popular ball sports. Programs are carefully designed to focus on the development of balance, strength, coordination, stamina and timing through professional instruction and positive encouragement, using customized equipment. For more information, check out our website at www.sportball.ca, call 250-590-4625, or email van.island@ sportball.ca.

STAGES Performing Arts School since 1980

s e s s a l C o l Da n c e up

Pre -S cfohr aoges 20 months andCome Dance Wi t h Us

t C la s s e s, o T & t n e r Pa , H ip H o p, t e ll a B , z Ja z la s s e s & C o m b,oBaClle t Ta p & z (w it h J a z h e a t re ) Mu s ic a l T

Even the lit tlest angel can dance

For more information

Call 250-384-3267 Email us at stagesdance@shaw.ca Or visit our website: www.stagesdance.com

Riding Westside Stables is located 15 minutes from downtown Victoria. If you have a horse-crazy kid, we have a program for you. Register now for one of our riding programs. We have many well-schooled, wonderful lesson horses and ponies. Our programs are all run with safety and fun in mind following the Horse Council of BC guidelines for advancement. We have a large indoor and outdoor riding ring offering year-round riding lessons and camps. Come join the fun. Call Tiffany at 250-652-1462 or visit www.westsidestables.ca.

LIFE Seminars presents

Sidestepping LIFE the Power Seminars Struggle presents


Wednesday Evenings The Eight Week Course

April 28 –Evenings June 2 Wednesday February 2010 13 to April 3 7:00 to 9:30 Spectrum School The LIFE7:00 team – will support 9:30 you to work with the material and create positive and meaningful shifts in your family.

Science & Nature Spice up winter at your school with our fun science program. Mad Science® Vancouver Island offers a series of six weekly science lessons, where we immerse children in a hands-on environment of exploration, fun and learning. Children have a chance to experiment and build their own take-home science toy. Check the variety of programs with fun science content like our birthday parties, shows and camps. Book online any time at vancouverisland.madscience.org or call 1-888-954-6237 for more information.•

For parents with children of any age – this course Sidestepping takes the guesswork out of the Power parenting and creates long lasting positive changes. Struggle

For more information on other courses or counselling go to lifeseminars.com 250-595-2649or call:

with Dr. Dr. Allison Rees with Rees

lifeseminars.com 250-595-2649

January 2013  23

Pregnant? Pregnancy is a state of health. Midwives recognize what an extraordinary time this is in your life and we are available to support you through your childbearing year.

Covered by Your BC Health Care BC’s Medical Services Plan pays for midwifery care, including in-home check-ups in labour and after you’ve had your baby. You can self-refer to a midwife.

Quality Care Studies show that midwifery clients have lower rates of episiotomies, infection, Caesarean sections, forceps and vacuum deliveries and newborns that require resuscitation.

Choice of Hospital or Home Birth Continuity of Care Comprehensive Care Breastfeeding Education & Support

Registered Midwives in Victoria: Colleen Rode  250-386-4116 Angela Schaerer  250-384-9062 Beth Smit  250-384-5940 Ilana Stanger-Ross 250-590-7605 Julia Stolk  250-590-7605 Misty Wasyluk  250-380-6329 Deanna Wildeman  250-592-5407 Heather Wood  250-380-6329 Amy Brownhill  250-386-4116 Michele Buchmann  250-590-7770 Chloe Dayman  250-380-6329 Uta Herold (Sooke)  778-425-0780 Deborah Little  250-592-0099 Luba Lyons Richardson  250-381-1977 Lorna J. McRae  250-380-6329 Jody Medernach 250-590-7605 Kim Millar Lewis  250-384-5940 Heather Nelson  250-380-6329 Jill Pearman  250-590-7605 We would be pleased to schedule an appointment to answer your questions about midwifery care.

24  Island Parent Magazine

Elizabeth Poppe

Growing Up at the Library


come from a long line of library users. My grandmother was a library technician in Toronto and kept a special bookshelf in her front hall full of discarded picture books for us grandchildren. My mother carried on the tradition with weekly visits to our local library, four young children in tow. These visits have achieved epic proportions in my memory, especially the winter our library underwent a huge renovation and the entire collection was moved to a warehouse across town for the duration, where it remained open for business as usual. We’d pile our books and my youngest sister onto the wooden sled and trek home in the snow, past the train tracks, through the woods, into the early dark of a winter night. When we moved to the West Coast in my teens, it was a thrill to discover our new library allowed us to check out literally eight times as many books as we were used to and to keep them for twice as long! Three years ago, after my book-themed baby shower, I was all set…for a little while. For a book lover there can never be enough and there are only so many times you can read Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What do you Hear? to your baby before you start to wonder if other books still exist in the world. That is when I discovered the Drop-In Baby Time at the Greater Victoria Public Library. At first I was reluctant, envisioning overenthusiastic parents making their babies clap along to the same old cutesy songs. I greatly underestimated our wonderful local librarians and their ability to engage not just babies and children but adults as well. Certainly there were songs but I can’t recall one single rendition of Pat-a-Cake. And how lovely to have my childhood love of Raffi rekindled. In addition, there were puppets, musical instruments, stories (of course!) and singing games so interactive I sometimes felt I’d attended one of those mommy/baby boot-camps and not a library storytime. Before Nicolas was born, I had been a regular library patron, visiting monthly and checking out as many as 60 books to supplement the weekly themed programs at my job in out-of-school care, not to mention

the many books, CDs and movies I had on hold for myself. These days I find myself at my nearest branch as often as twice a week, toddler in tow. We have “graduated” to Family Storytime and it is one of my greatest joys to observe how Nicolas’ level of participation has increased as his confidence grows. Twisting his hands the

right way for finger-plays, calling out colours during felt-board stories, and jumping up for movement songs—he tries them all these days. I love the way his face lights up when familiar books are on the roster. And when storytime is over, his greatest joy is to play on the oversize foam blocks, jumping from one to another, using them as motorcycles and showing me all his “cool tricks.” On days when we have a spare hour before dinner, we head to the library where I have watched him persevere through challenging puzzles, practice sharing the farm animals and put away the stuffed animals all on his own. I have seen him figure out how to turn the pages of the Biggest Word Book Ever, spin a globe and even flush a toilet! He can also return books, recycle hold slips and is rapidly learning how to check out books for himself. All this, and more, at your favourite local library. Elizabeth Poppe is mama to Nicolas (who will shortly have his very own library card) and would like to say an extra-special thank you to Adrienne the librarian for all the wonderful Friday mornings. www.kidsinvictoria.com

Early development is child’s play! It’s obvious that play time is fun. What’s not so obvious is how important it is. Play time in a child’s first six years encourages creative, cognitive, language and motor development, and builds social and emotional skills, including self-confidence. In short, play time is an important step for healthy growth and development and is great preparation for school. To find out more about children’s early years and how you can encourage their healthy growth and development, please visit

e m i t Play


www.successby6victoria.ca www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  25

Keith Guinchard

Teenagers & Money


t is common for teenagers to have part-time jobs. Often it is the logical next step beyond receiving an allowance. The financial leap from receiving an allowance or no allowance to the relative riches of a part-time job can be quite significant. Your children will have access to a source of funds they can use to purchase clothing, socialize with friends, engage in hobbies or put aside for a rainy day. This sudden influx of money can lead to problems if not handled correctly, just as it can give rise to some great opportunities. How soon can your son or daughter start working? In British Columbia, they can start as early as age 12. The provincial government has created strict guidelines on employment of young people between the ages of 12 and 15. Parents with children this age should review the guidelines and ensure they fully understand their children’s employment conditions. A fact sheet is available at www.labour.gov.bc.ca/esb/facshts/ youth_general.htm. Not all early teens have the emotional

maturity to handle the income that comes from a part-time job. Parents need to work with their children to help them understand the pitfalls and opportunities that come from having a steady income. Some basic ground rules need to be established. Setting and reinforcing these rules early will set the stage for later years when their jobs pay more and eventually become full time. Discussion points should include setting goals, basic budgeting, bank accounts, debit cards, and for older teens, credit cards. With the influx of part-time income, goals need to be established. Teenagers must determine how much of their earnings are available to spend now with the remainder saved towards goals. This establishes habits for when, as adults, they have to weigh competing spending demands. One goal might be to save for future education costs. Other goals could include saving for big-ticket items such as a new bike, gaming console, or to offset costs for a high school band trip. A basic budget will help kids

remain focused on attaining their goals. It will outline the planned expenditures by category, including how much of each pay cheque will go toward which goal and how much can be used as spending money. Kids should also be encouraged to track their expenditures from time to time to see if reality is measuring up to the plan. They can then make adjustments to get back on track. Once the goals and budget are established, a bank account becomes necessary. Most Canadian banks and credit unions offer no-fee chequing and savings accounts for children and teenagers. Some also offer special accounts for high school and post secondary students. The number of fee-free transactions, interest paid, age limitations and other services vary from institution to institution, so it pays to do your homework. Exceeding the number of fee-free transactions will enable your son or daughter to see how expensive banking can become if they do not control their withdrawals. With the bank account, set rules for what constitutes a valid reason for withdrawal. Learning how to budget and identify spending priorities can quickly go out the window if every new want overrules previously established goals. Often a debit card comes with the bank account. This is a great opportunity for the

ALL DAY KINDERGARTEN? We’ve been doing it for 30 years at Selkirk Montessori! We also offer outstanding Montessori half-day kindergarten, preschool, elementary and middle school programs. Come to our Open House and see what makes us special:

For information, or to arrange a tour of our facility, call Penny Barner at 250-384-3414 or email office @selkirkmontessori.ca


Thursday, January 17 th


5:30-8:30 pm


Selkirk Montessori School, 2970 Jutland Road (at the Selkirk Waterfront Development)

With an enriched program incorporating French, Japanese, Mandarin and Spanish language instruction, music, skating, swimming and rowing, Selkirk Montessori is an exceptional, affordable alternative in a diverse, caring school community.




26  Island Parent Magazine




teenager to learn the pros and cons of their use. Canadians are one of the world’s most frequent users of debit cards, and the sooner your son or daughter learns the rules on their use, the better. They need to understand how quickly the costs can add up if they exceed the number of free transactions or frequently use their card at other financial institution ATMs. To avoid excessive spending, the financial institution can place limitations on the purchase or withdrawal amount. For amounts in excess of the limitation, the teen must go into the branch and make a counter withdrawal. This often takes the steam out of impulse buying. Once teenagers reach the final years of high school, start full-time work or are on their way to higher education, they enter the realm of credit. Often this means a credit card. One of the first items to fall out of a university or college welcome package will be applications to a variety of credit cards. The mix is usually a general-purpose card such as a VISA or Mastercard and retail credit cards such as Canadian Tire. Whether this is a wise decision or not is a topic of varied opinion. On the plus side, it is an excellent opportunity to build a credit rating, take responsibility with credit, learn about interest charges and how to work within a budget to pay the card off every month. On the negative side even with the typical small credit limits that come with these cards it is easy to get into trouble and develop a poor credit rating. The use of a prepaid or a secured card with a small limit is often a good first step as a starter card. The fees on these cards can be expensive and vary widely so it pays to check them out carefully. The prelude to your teenager acquiring a card is a parent-and-child discussion on the pros and cons. If in doubt, it might be advisable to err on the side of caution and withhold approval until circumstances improve. When teenagers start earning an income, their capacity to practice good money management will probably be lacking. This represents an excellent opportunity to teach some basic money management skills that will stand them in good stead for the rest of their lives. Learning how to set goals, budget, save, use a debit card and perhaps manage a credit card are great life skills best learned and reinforced early.

since 1980

STAGES Performing Arts School

Come Dance With Us

• Offering classes in Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical, Tap, Hip Hop & Musical Theatre in a non-competitive atmosphere. • Not sure which class to take? Try a Drop-In: No hassle, No Obligation

ES? & G A o ST i s Add T Ne w io n Th ne nt eO Me Re c ie v o p -I n Dr e e r F

STAGES Performing Arts School

#301 1551 Cedar Hill X Rd (behind the Shelbourne MacDonalds)

Even the littlest angel can dance

$100’s in Savings 41 Family Coupons 36 Local Businesses

+ = 1 Awesome Book

Keith Guinchard is a former financial planner and non-profit debt counsellor who maintains a keen interest in financial issues and their effect on families. He can be reached at keith@keithguinchard.com. www.IslandParent.ca

For more information call 250-384-3267, Email us at stagesdance@shaw.ca Or visit our website: www.stagesdance.com


Island Parent Magazine

Client Contact

Moms & More Productions: Savvy Squirrel January 2013  thesavvysquirrel@gmail.com


4.75 x 2.125



Design Contact

Amy Rutherford, Rather Good Design amy@rathergood.ca

Insertion Date


Party Directory Funtime Inflatables 250-474-0597

Largest selection of inflatable fun on Vancouver Island Ask about our Referral Program • 18 bouncy castles to choose from, detachable raincovers available • Obstacle courses • 10 interactive games for youth and adults • Combo bouncers • Carnival games and party packages • Fully insured Professional balloon decorating service now available



Great indoor parties available: Par-T-Bear, Par-T-Spa and our great Rec Centre packages.

New soft serve ice cream truck available for events and ice cream socials




Newly Renovated Birthday Party Rooms

Our great instructors will treat you to an action packed two hours of fun and fitness in our great facility!

• 2 large decorated birthday rooms • Free T-shirt for birthday child, invitations for up to 10 children • The ONLY Inflatable Climbing Mountain with trampoline in town • Party Time now offered for many different groups (schools, daycare centres) Book Early: 250-479-6424

#208 – 721 Vanalman Ave

(Broadmead & Royal Oak Area)


386-JUMP (5867)



Celebrate your birthday with us!



Birthday Parties


adult corporate party

NEW Party Themes! Par-T-Carnival & Medieval Par-T-Knights







3 sary r Annive 2011 1973–



Monetty Georgia

visit our website at




www.funtimeinflatables.ca G

Par-T-Perfect Is Celebrating Ten Years!



4Cats Duncan 4cats.com/duncan•250-709-2286 4Cats Langford 4cats.com/langford•778-430-5422 4Cats Oak Bay 4cats.com/oakbay•250-598-0300 4Cats Royal Oak 4cats.com/royaloak •250-590-7233

Birthday Parties! :: Gym & Bouncy Castle, themed parties: creative kids, girl power and preschool parties from Princesses to Pirates! at Henderson Recreation Centre!

Call 250-370-7200

Pool, Skate, or Soccer parties at Oak Bay Recreation Centre!

Call 250-595-SWIM (7946)


Action-Packed Birthday Parties Supervised • 2–8 Yrs

It’s about skills, not scores.

Go to www.sportball.ca for schedules & information Call us: 250 590 4625  Email: van.island@sportball.ca

Enter Our Online Contests Every month at Island Parent and Kids In Victoria you can enter to win some great prizes! January Contest: 1st Prize is a $250 Gift Card from Thrifty Foods. 2nd Prize is a Beesafe Solutions Deluxe Emergency Preparedness Kit (value $169.50). An additional three winners will receive their choice of of an item from our prize table. Deadline is January 31st at noon. Check out the prizes and enter the contests by visiting

www.IslandParent.ca or www.kidsinvictoria.com 28  Island Parent Magazine


Party Directory Bring your party of Grubs and Larvae for a Bugtastic Adventure at the Bug Zoo! Party Room available!

Call for Details: 384-BUGS (2847) or check the website: www.bugzoo.bc.ca

ctoria Gymnastics Birthday Parties

Your child and 9 of his or her friends will have an absolute blast at one of our action packed gymnastics parties. What’s included? • We supply hats, napkins, table cover, streamers and balloons • Two Certified Instructors • Invitations • Trampoline • Foam Pit Fun • Gymnastics Games • Fun Music • NEW: 40 Foot Long Trampoline! Saturday & Sunday Afternoons


Corner of Store & Pembroke www.victoriagymnastics.com

631 Courtney St. (Downtown in Nootka Court)

Hassle Free Parties for kids & families

Organise wonderful parties conveniently delivered to your door! Party Supplies for all occasions, themes and ages


ip@greatlittlecelebration.com www.greatlittlecelebration.com


birthday parties Book a 45 minute interactive party in your own home for up to ten young guests from ages 3-8. Choose from three different fun themes! Visit vcm.bc.ca/departments/childrens-music/ for more information, or call 250-386-5311.

You’ll Flip Over Our Birthday Parties

You provide the space and food…

* Greater Victoria’s newest, largest and cleanest facility with hassle free parking for you and your guests * * Large private party rooms * * Experienced Qualified Fun Coaches * * 3 Trampolines & 40ft Tumble Trac * * Awesome Foam Pit *

We’ll provide an hour of fun with puppet shows and play


250 472 3546 www.puppetbooth.homestead.com

Mr. Tubbs Ice Cream Parlor & Family Fun Zone • 30 family oriented redemption games • huge prize counter • 2 fully decorated party rooms • foot-long hot dogs • 32 flavors of Island Farms Ice Cream

New Party themes this fall! Ice-cream Spa Parties Vanilla, Strawberry and Chocolate inspired spa services for the pampered princess!

BFF Parties for 2–3 girls Party Princess Enchanted Fairies Darling Divas Rockin’ Popstars

Party Animals!

Create your own stuffed animal or bear, choose from 3 different themes; each theme includes a variety of animals!

Open Year Round

@ Western Speedway 2207 Millstream Road 250-590-4369 mrtubbs.com www.IslandParent.ca

www.lionspridegymnastics.com Located in Langford

Beary Cute Pink-a-licious Quirky Pets

3655 Shelbourne St, Shelbourne Plaza 250-590-5568 www.lizzyleeandme.com

January 2013  29

Jessica Duncan

Hosting Homestays I

’d be lying if I said it wasn’t for the money. At first, I just saw the dollar signs. We had just bought a big, rambling house and we needed a little help paying the mortgage. Someone I barely knew who had been hosting homestay students for several years convinced me that it was a good idea and gave me the contact information for the Victoria International High School Programs. A week later I made a call that would completely transform my family’s life. As the mother of two daughters, there was no question that we wanted to host girls only. A year and a half into my hosting career, I feel like the mother of many daughters. When a young person comes to live under your roof for any stretch of time, it is inevitable that parental instincts will kick in, and I defy any homestay parent to shut these feelings down completely after the student departs. Our first students were two Japanese girls who came to Victoria to learn English in a

mere five days. Though we’d been given a handbook on Japanese culture and how to host, we were not the least bit prepared. These girls barely understood anything I said in my easy-on-the-ears Canadian teacher voice, let alone my husband’s idiosyncratic ramblings in his thick Scottish brogue. Fortunately, we had three ice-breakers in the house: a piano, a cat, and a very chatty younger daughter who could talk the hind leg off of a donkey regardless of language barriers. By the end of their short week with us, we were all friends and able to communicate with much more than language. We still receive email messages from the girls with updates about their progress in school and their plans to return to Canada someday. From that first one-week stint at hosting, we grew progressively bolder, taking students for four weeks, then six, then seven, then four months, then five months. We’ve had students from Japan, Thailand, France, Mexico, Brazil, China, Germany

and Colombia, a pin in the map for each one. My children have learned to say “thank you” in seven different languages. They weren’t very thankful at the beginning. We had just moved from the UK and were dealing with the predictable culture shock and general upheaval. The last thing my family wanted was to share our new home with complete strangers. I, on the other hand, thought it would be a great way to experience other countries vicariously while covering some of our expenses. Being the mother of the house, the final decision was mine, and thus we opened our doors to the world. International students always arrive bearing gifts which instantly endears them to even the most reluctant young host. Regional souvenirs and interesting food items aside, they also bring their culture as well as their own unique personality. Generally speaking, a child who is bold enough to cross the globe to live with a strange family is often adventurous and outgoing. Though you sometimes hear horror stories of kids who are ill-behaved, moody, thieving, or just rude, we have had a steady stream of delightful, fun, responsible young ladies who quickly became part of the family. Each student adds a dynamic of her own and so

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 – 17 in grades 1 – 11 • Individual Education Plans • Low student/teacher ratio

Enrolment is limited. For more information or to arrange a tour, visit www.discoveryschool.ca, call Sherri Ko at 250-595-7765 or email principal@discoveryschool.ca 30  Island Parent Magazine


we have all, over time, learned how to relate to a variety of different people on a day-in, day-out basis. My kids have developed ways to communicate in a manner that welcomes the newcomers and makes them feel at home. Offering international students a room in our home has taught my daughters the fine art of being friendly while maintaining their own personal lives. Our homestay students bring gifts, pay rent and teach us life lessons, but I would like to think that we also offer them a few things—beyond room and board. Judging by my grocery bills and the comments they write in our guest book, so far, all of our students have thoroughly enjoyed my cooking. A little flattery goes a long way, so if a student compliments one of my culinary endeavours, I will ensure she gets her fill of her favourite dish as long as she is under my roof. We allow the girls to invite friends for sleepovers. We’ve even been known to attend their school concerts. I think the best gift we have given these girls, however, is the opportunity to spend a few months in this beautiful city where they can move about in relative safety. Some of our students hail from cities where they have never walked to school and have been constantly chaperoned. They do not hop buses to meet their friends at the mall. They do not go to movies without adult supervision. They do not feel safe. For a few precious weeks or months, while they live with us, they experience the freedom of safety and independence. To be able to give these young people a taste of freedom and safety—basic rights that our children take for granted—is, indeed, better than all the tea in China. I am often asked about hosting homestay students. Many parents see this as an opportunity to put a spare room to good use while introducing their own kids to different cultures. Victoria is teeming with international exchange programs and language schools that thrive on satisfied customers. They want the students to be happy and they want the host families to be happy, and they go to great lengths to ensure a positive outcome. If you are one of those people who have quietly eyed the international student programs and wondered what it is like to host students from other countries, you just might want to take the next step and make a call that will open your doors to the world. Jessica Duncan can sometimes relate to the Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe. Somewhere amidst the comings and goings, she occasionally finds time to write an article. www.IslandParent.ca

“My kid could paint that.” Great, bring them down. We have awesome kids’ programs starting in the new year. Visit aggv.ca or call 250.384.4171 ext. 0 for more information. Love your art gallery.

8-week Group Therapy Offerings for kids and for adults Adults

Project Hope

Empowering and Rebuilding Families of Offenders



The Self-Esteem Group

Change Happens

It’s Okay to be Okay

Finding Direction and Support through Change

Middle Schoolers

Elementary Schoolers

Anxiety At Bay

Overcoming OCD

A Group to Help Middle Schoolers Overcome Anxiety

A Group for Elementary School Children

Supporting growth and wellness through professional care

Joel Durkovic, M.A., RCC, RMFT Liz Prette, M.A., RCC Jacqueline Nikolejsin, M.Ed., RCC


250.479.9912 January 2013  31

January 2013

Generously Sponsored by     and

Family Calendar For calendar updates throughout the month visit www.kidsinvictoria.com TUES 1 New Year’s Day Levée at Government House. Enjoy light refreshments and the music of the Naden Band of Maritime Forces Pacific, and the Canadian Scottish Regiment of Pipes and Drums. Food contributions or donations to support local food banks encouraged and accepted at the door. Free. 10am-noon. 1401 Rockland Ave. Info, 250-387-2080.

THURS 3 Let’s Go Wild Youth Workshop at Wild ARC. This January, head back to school with a story to tell. When your teacher asks what you did during winter vacation, say “I went wild!” For kids age 7-11. 10am-2pm. Sign up at www. spca.bc.ca/youth or email revans@spca.bc.ca or call 250-686-1581 for more information.

SUN 6 Christmas Tree Chipping at Bear Mountain Resort. Bring your trees to the parking lot behind the Real Estate offices. By donation to support local minor hockey. Free hot chocolate and apple cider. $5/person suggested donation. 1999 Country Club Way. Info, 250-391-7158.

WED 9 Homeopathy at Home at Dr. Zimmermann’s Office. Learn how to use safe, effective homeopathic remedies for yourself and your family. From colds, flus and earaches to minor injuries, colic, teething and digestive upsets, Dr. Zimmermann will teach you from her extensive

experience. 7-9pm. $10. #304-2250 Oak Bay Ave. drzimmermann@shaw.ca. 250-590-5828.

SAT 12 Lovely Lone Tree Hill at Lone Tree Hill Regional Park. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist for a guided walk to the summit and take in the spectacular views. Bring a snack and wear sturdy hiking shoes. Meet in the parking lot off Millstream Rd at 1pm. 5+ years. 250-478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks. Lego at the Library at Bruce Hutchison Branch Library. Like stories and Lego? Then this is the program for you. We’ll supply the Lego, and you’ll use your imagination to construct your own crazy creation to display at the library. For a project to take home, bring your own Lego. For ages 6-10. 3-4pm. Register online at www. gvpl.ca or call 250-727-0104 for information. Owl Prowl at Mill Hill Regional Park. Owls are amazing birds. Join CRD Regional Parks guest naturalist David Allinson for this exciting adventure into the dark woods to look for and call owls. 8+ years. 7-9pm. $7 + HST. Pre-registration required before January 11. Space is limited. BC Transit #50 or #53. 250478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks.

SUN 13 Winter Wondertime at Mill Hill Regional Park. What are the animals up to in the winter forest? Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to look for raccoon winter food, find a good spot for hibernation, and play animal games in the

forest. Meet at info kiosk in parking lot off Atkins Ave at 1pm. All ages. BC Transit #50 or #53. 250-478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks.

TUES 15 Preschool Storytime at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. Preschoolers are invited to fun and interactive storytimes that will help foster early literacy development. We’ll share enriching stories, sing songs, learn rhymes and have fun playing with language. Parents and caregivers are welcome to participate. For ages 3-5. 10:30-11am. Register online or call 250-477-9030 for more information. Celebrate 100 years of mentoring services with Big Brothers Big Sisters at the Greater Victoria Public Library (735 Broughton St) from 2:00-3:30pm. Free children’s books for families. Details at:www.bbbsvictoria.com. Wild Arc Pro-D Day Fun at Sidney/North Saanich Branch Library. Wild Arc is the only Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre on Southern Vancouver Island. Bring your kids to learn about the work we do. All ages welcome. 1-2pm. To register, please call 250-656-0944.

SAT 19 Winter Wander at Devonian Regional Park. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to explore this beautiful seaside gem. Find out what plants and animals make this park home. Meet at info kiosk in parking lot off William Head Rd at 1pm. 5+ years. BC Transit #54 or #55. 250-478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks.

Enjoy the flavour of

Coastal breeze, sunshine, green grass, happy cows & made fresh, everyday…

32  Island Parent Magazine

island life.

Made right, right here.


Knit Wits for Teens at Nellie McClung Branch Library. Learn how to knit a simple neck warmer and help others by donating your finished project to a local shelter. Join local teen and knitter extraordinaire, Nicole Bottles, for coaching and inspiration. We will supply the instructions and yarn. Bring your own 8mm knitting needles, or borrow them from the library. A great project for beginner knitters. Experienced teen knitters are also invited to bring current projects and join in the fun. For ages 13-18. 1:30-3pm. Register at www. gvpl.ca or call 250-477-7111 for information.

SUN 20 Oh Deer! at Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park. Could you survive as a deer? A day in the life of a deer includes looking for food and shelter, avoiding predators from cars to cougars, and finding shelter. Find out your “DQ” with a CRD Regional Parks naturalist along this nature trail. Meet at the Witty’s Lagoon Nature Centre off Metchosin Rd at 1pm. 8+ years. BC Transit #54 or #55. 250-478-3344.

MON 21 Victoria Children’s Literature Roundtable at Nellie McClung Branch Library. Kit Pearson, award winning children’s author, known for her amazing historical fiction books, will discuss her new books, The Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth and talk about her life as an author. Doors open at 7pm. Browse the Cadboro Bay Books table before the meeting at 7:30pm. Open to the public. New members and drop-ins welcome. Members free; $5/dropin; $4/student. Call 250-598-3694.

TUES 22 Preschool Storytime at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. See TUES 15 for details. Parents and caregivers are welcome to participate. For ages 3-5. 10:30-11am. Register online or call 250-477-9030 for more information.

WED 23 Vaccination: Confused? at Dr. Zimmermann’s office. Are you confused about vaccination?

Fu n d rai s i ng P rog ram



Story Club at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. Listen to stories, talk about your favourite books and enjoy fun activities. Snacks included. This club is for kids who love stories regardless of reading ability. For ages 5-8. 3:30-4:30pm. Register online at www.gvpl.ca or call 250-477-9030 for information. Pajama Storytime at Oak Bay Branch Library. Put on your pjs and come cuddle up for some bedtime stories and fun at the library. Don’t forget your favourite stuffy. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be accompanied by an adult. 7-7:30pm. Register at www.gvpl.ca or call 250-592-2489 for info.

fri 25 Story Club at Central and Bruce Hutchison Branch Libraries. See THURS 24 for details. For ages 5-8. 3:30-4:30pm. Central: 250382-7241, ext. 601; Bruce Hutchison: 250727-0104. Register online at www.gvpl.ca or call the hosting branch for more information.

SAT 26 Captain Underpants and the Loopy Library at Oak Bay Branch Library. Make your own Flip-O-Rama Book O’ Fun and hear some hilarious gross-out stories. For ages 6-9. 10:30-11:30am. Register online at www.gvpl. ca or call 250-592-2489 for more information. Durrance Lake Loop at Mount Work Regional Park. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist for a hike around this picturesque lake to explore its many inhabitants. Wear waterproof footwear. Meet in Durrance Lake parking lot off Durrance Close, off Willis Point Rd at 1pm. 8+ years. 250-478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks.

Knit Wits for Teens at Nellie McClung Branch Library. See SAT 19 for details. For ages 1318. 1:30-3pm. Register at www.gvpl.ca or call 250-477-7111 for more information.

sun 27 Winter Birds of Island View Beach at Island View Beach Regional Park. Island View Beach is one of the premiere winter birding locations in the region. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to look for hawks, owls, sea ducks, loons and more. Wear warm clothes and bring binoculars if you have them. Meet at picnic shelter on Homathko Rd, off Island View Rd at 9am. 12+ years. 250-478-3344. www.crd.bc.ca/parks.

mon 28 Author Bronwyn Preece at Central Saanich Branch Library. Mixing drama with a reading of Gulf Islands Alphabet, Bronwyn Preece will take you on an island-hopping journey through the Salish Sea, stopping to meet local animals, plants and islanders along the way. For Grades 2-4 and homeschoolers too. 10:30-11:30am. Register online at www.gvpl.ca or call 250652-2013 for more information.

TUES 29 Preschool Storytime at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. See TUES 15 for details. Parents and caregivers are welcome to participate. For ages 3-5. 10:30-11am. Register online or call 250-477-9030 for more information.

Simple Steps to Success: Group members “load” the cards at the till and use the cards to buy groceries.

 Submit an application form with a covering letter.

Smile Card

Do you worry about the number of shots given or the aluminum in vaccines? Do you want to opt out of vaccination, use only some shots or use the standard program but help your child to tolerate them better? Dr. Zimmermann can help you make an informed decision that is right for your family. 7-9pm. $10. #304-2250 Oak Bay Ave. drzimmermann@shaw.ca. 250590-5828.

Once approved, receive Fundraising Smile Cards and distribute to members of your group.

Each time the Smile Cards are “loaded,” Thrifty Foods automatically donates 5% to your group’s Smile Card Fundraising account! 

Visit thriftyfoods.com to get started today! www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  33

Family Literacy Week: ABC Fun at Esquimalt Branch Library. Choose your own A-B-Cs! Enjoy alphabet stories and then create your very own collage alphabet book. Supplies provided. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be accompanied by an adult. 10:30-11:30am. Register online at www.gvpl. ca or call 250-414-7198 for more information. Story Club at Nellie McClung Branch Library. See THURS 24 for details. For ages 5-8. 3:304:30pm. Register online at www.gvpl.ca or call 250-477-7111 for more information.

wed 30 Guys’ Night Out: A Bedtime Storytime at Saanich Centennial Branch Library. Calling dads, stepdads, granddads, uncles… bring the kids you love to a special storytime before they go to bed. Join us for stories, puppets, fingerplays and songs. Pajamas and a favourite stuffy or blanket are welcome, but optional. For children newborn to 5 years. 6:30-7pm. Register online at www.gvpl.ca or call 250477-9030 for more information.

thurs 31 Family Literacy Week: ABC Fun at Emily Carr Branch Library. See TUES 29 for details. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be accompanied by an adult. 10:30-11:30am. Register online at www.gvpl. ca or call 250-475-6100 for more information.

ONGOING BABIES, TODDLERS & PRESCHOOL Drop-in Storytimes for Babies, Toddlers and Families at Greater Victoria Public Library. Caregivers are welcome and encouraged to participate. Storytimes are free and dropin. Please come early to find a space. For a complete schedule of our drop-in programs, visit our website at www.gvpl.ca or call your local branch. Parent/Tot Drop-in at Gordon Head United Church. A safe place where young children can play while parents in the community connect with each other. Lots of space and toys. Tea or coffee is available for caregivers, and a healthy snack for the children. Parents are responsible for the care of their own children. Mondays 10am-noon. For more info, call the church office at 250-477-4142, or Maisie at 250-477-0388. Kindergym and Parent and Tot Time at Burnside Campus Gymnasium. Ride-on toys, climbers, slides, balls, hoops and various sports equipment. The program includes free play, organized games and circle time. Best suited for ages 2-4 years, but all children under 5 are welcome. Parent participation required. Free. 3130 Jutland Rd. 250-388-5251. www. burnsidegorge.ca.

Toddler Art at Burnside Gorge Community Centre. Explore your creative side. Smocks and soap provided, but please dress children in clothing that they can get messy and be creative in. Parent participation required. $2/drop-in. Wednesdays, 9:30am-10:30am. 471 Cecelia Rd. 250-388-5251. www.burnsidegorge.ca. Good Morning Rhyme Time at the Sidney/ North Saanich Branch Library. Bring your littlest ones to the library for stories, songs, rhymes and movement. Stay for a social time and refreshments. Ages 0-5. Thursdays January 10-February 14, 10:15-10:45am. To register, please call 250-656-0944. Drop-in Toddler Time at Lansdowne Preschool. A great place to play and discover. For children ages 0-5. Fridays 9:30-11am, in the Maple Room at Carnarvon Centre, 3802 Henderson Rd. 250-370-5392. www. lansdownepreschool.com.

Children Celebrate Family Literacy Week at the Greater Victoria Public Library. Family Literacy is something to celebrate every day, but especially on Canada’s annual Family Literacy Day on January 27. At GVPL, we will celebrate for a whole week from January 27 to February 2 with special programs. Make sure you take part in GVPL’s Family Activity Card contest. Complete the Activity Card by March 15 to

Winter Concerts for Kids with the Victoria Symphony

Join Maestro Joey and the VS for TWO musical adventures this winter! Explore the life of Mozart in The Mozart Experience and solve the mystery of Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead. Come early for the VS Instrument Petting Zoo and other activities in the lobby. 2:30 PM ON SUNDAYS JANUARY 27 & FEBRUARY 24 ROYAL THEATRE

victoriasymphony.ca or 250.385.6515 34  Island Parent Magazine


be entered in a draw for a $60 gift certificate to a bookstore of your choice. Every child with a completed card will also be able to choose a small grab box item. Pick up a card beginning January 27 from your local branch, or download one at gvpl.ca/audiences/parentseducators. Completed cards may be entered into the gift certificate draw at any GVPL branch. For young children and their families. No registration required. Sea-Shirt Sundays at the Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre. On the first Sunday of each month, create your own fish fashion. Be sure to bring a pillow case, cloth bag or t-shirt (or purchase a t-shirt from the centre) and your creativity. $2 donation for fabric paint. 1-4pm. 250-665-7511.

Music education for the whole family! Toddler, Youth, Adult & Professional Musician Classes, Workshops and More! Music is proven to improve Memory, Motor Skills, Learning Skills & Listening Abilities

It’s never to early or late to start learning how to play!

FAMILIES Ready to Rent BC offers a free course to help find and keep a rental home. Six-week courses run at different times, days and locations. We help renters identify and deal with any barriers they may have to housing. Includes bus tickets, child minding and a healthy snack. To sign up, call 250-388-7171. readytorentbc.net. Parent Sports Drop-in at James Bay Community School Centre. Parents need time to have fun and get back in touch with their inner child. Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 7-9pm. $3.50/person. www.jamesbaycentre.ca. The Victoria Good News Choir, directed by Louise Rose, welcomes you and your family to sing with us for the joy of singing. We are a non-audition community choir for all ages in which friendship and support are present in abundance. Rehearsals for the new season begin Tuesday, January 8, 2013, 7:30pm at Cordova Bay United Church. For more info, call 250-658-1946, visit www.victoriagoodnewschoir.com, or email info@victoriagoodnewschoir.com. Weekly Bird Walk at Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary (meet in the parking lot). Every Wednesday and Sunday noon-3pm. Metchosin School Museum is open Saturdays 1:30-4:30pm and Sundays 11am-4:30pm. An original, one-room school house built in 1871, it is set up as a classroom with old wooden desks. Families can enjoy perusing the hundreds of artifacts on display. Free. 4475 Happy Valley Rd. Wonder Sunday at the Royal BC Museum. Bring your family on the last Sunday of each month for activities and explorations inspired by different parts of the museum. Make crafts, join special tours, and let your imagination wander away with you. Suitable for children ages 3-12 years and is included with admission or free with membership. www.royalbcmuseum.bc.ca.•

Come and join us at an Arbutus Music Open House this season: Sundays: Feb 24th, 2013 • April 14th, 2013 • June 9th, 2013 Music, food and fun for the whole family. Check the website for details!

250 933 1900 arbutusmusic.com

Arbutus Music Store and Education Centre 6324 Metral Drive, Nanaimo

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada Turns 100! FREE CHILDREN’S BOOKS will be given out! (While quantities last)

Come celebrate celebrate with withus! us!

January 15th, 15th,2013 2013 Greater Victoria Greater Victoria Public PublicLibrary Library 735 Broughton BroughtonSt. St. 2:00pm-3:30pm 2:00pm-3:30pm Come usand andenjoy: enjoy: Comesupport support us performance by by the the “Getting “Getting Higher” Higher” Choir Choir AA performance Speeches by by our our Bigs Bigs and and Littles Littles Speeches Presentation of results of our 5-year study Presentation of results of our 5-year study on mentoring on mentoring Cake cutting ceremony Cake cutting ceremony

For more information, information, For more visit: www.bbbsvictoria.com visit: www.bbbsvictoria.com

Building a stronger community one relationship at a time www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  35

Family-Friendly Mid-Island

Morning Glory School Pre-School to Class 8 Parent & Child Program

A balanced approach to school life; academics, music, art and outdoor activities. Waldorf Education blended with BC Curriculum


Friday, Jan 25th, 3–5pm


Call for more information or to schedule a classroom visit

861 Hilliers Rd off Hwy 4 Qualicum Beach


JUST Kidding! For Kids

Can one boy’s love of music bring balance and safety to the Kingdom?


The Great Gazzoon

A Tall Tale with Tunes & Turbulence

Saturday February 2, 2012 1pm - Malaspina Theatre at VIU Single Tickets: $14 (incl. HST) Phone 250-754-7587 or order online: www.theatreone.org

36  Island Parent Magazine


Around the Island

Visit www.IslandParent.ca for these and other events and resources for families from Cowichan Valley north to Campbell River and west to Tofino SAT 5 – SUN 6 Christmas Tree Chipping at Brook’s Landing, Nanaimo. Chipping fee is by donation, with all proceeds benefiting the Nanaimo branch of the SPCA. 11am-3pm. More info, 250-758-0351.

TUES 8 Dad’s and Kid’s Skate Night at The Pond, Parksville. This free skate activity for dads and kids is sponsored by Building Learning Together. 6:30-7:30pm. 250-248-3252. www. rdn.bc.ca/recreation.

SUN 13 Welcome Wagon Baby Shower at Beban Park Social Centre, Nanaimo. Are you expecting? Features guest speakers with valuable information, and demonstrations designed to help with this special time. Doors open at noon, show starts at 1pm. Free. 2300 Bowen Rd.

TUES 16 Glow in the Dark Skate at Nanaimo Ice Centre. Skate in an atmosphere of dimmed lighting and special effects. Glow necklaces $2. Regular admission. 6:30-8pm. 250-756-5200.

FRI 18 Shallow & Deep Water Aquafit Craze at Nanaimo Aquatic Centre. What a great way to welcome in the New Year and set your fitness goals. Instructors will give you a great workout and even spoil you with some goodies and beverages after the session. 9:30-11:30am. 250-756-5200.

SAT 19 Lazer Tag at Oceanside Place Arena. Zip around on your skates playing lazer tag with your friends. Lazer tag equipment provided, but bring your own helmet and skates (some available at the arena if required). For 7- to 14-year-olds. 6:45-8:15pm. $5. 250-2483252. www.rdn.bc.ca/recreation.

SAT 26 Teen Glow in the Dark Skate at Oceanside Place Arena. Break out all your glow goodies and come to the rink for a colourful hour of skating. Everyone will receive a free glow bracelet. For 13- to 18-year-olds. 6:45-8:15pm. Free admission (regular skate rental price). 250-248-3252. www.rdn.bc.ca/recreation.


ONGOING PRESCHOOL LaFF at the Aggie is a drop-in family & friends resource program for children ages 0-6 and their parents, grandparents or caregivers. Play area, free clothing exchange, food programs, free coffee and tea. Monday to Friday, 9:30amnoon. $2 suggested donation (punch cards available). 250-210-0870, laffcoordinator@ shaw.ca, www.familyandfriends.ca. CC Tiny Tots Play Group every Wednesday at Country Club Centre, between Centre Court and Sport Mart. Free drop-in play group for children aged 5 years and younger plus their caregiver. Crafts, stories, songs and play led by ECE educators from PacificCare. 10-11am.

Children Parent & Child Hockey at Nanaimo Ice Centre. A fun, non-competitive hockey time for children where their parents can play too. Please

Send Us Your Stories! 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 www.islandparent.ca for specific information on submissions. We’d love to hear from you. Please email submissions to editor@islandparent.ca.

bring your own gloves and stick, and helmet with face cage. Pre-registration required. Sundays 5:15-6pm. $5. 250-756-5200.

YOUTH Spare Blox Youth Drop-in in Nanaimo is the ultimate place to be. This is a supervised space to hang out and chill. Open to those 12-17, it offers regular gym activities, video games, movies, foosball, air hockey and much more. Free, but you must register. 7-9pm through to May 1, 2013. Mondays at Nanaimo District Secondary School, Tuesdays at Oliver Woods Community Centre, Wednesdaya at John Barsby Community School. For more information call 250-756-5200. The Zone Youth Hang-Out at Beban Park Complex, Nanaimo. Come and hang out with your friends and participate in a different activity each week. Movie nights, dodge ball, soccer, or electronic night. For 11- to 13-yearolds. $6/drop-in. 7-9pm on Friday evenings. 250-756-5200.

FAMILY Lion’s and Save-On-Foods Family Skate at Oceanside Place Arena. Free admission and skate rentals. Children under 19 years must be accompanied by an adult. Pond hockey not available. January 6, 13, 20 & 27. Free. 250-248-3252. www.rdn.bc.ca/recreation.•

children’s boutique

Franchise Opportunity in Nanaimo!

Be your own boss by partnering with a well established business.

For details and information call Upane @ 778-990-6228 or email upane@scallywags-island.com

The Bay Centre, Victoria Broadmead Village, Saanich www.scallywags-island.com January 2013  37

Seasonal Camps KOSC

- Field Trips - Onsite Activities - Wide Games - Awesome Staff!

Upcoming Camp Dates: March 11-22 Youth Adventure Program • Hiking/Fishing • UVic • Bike Trips • Public Transit • Downtown



Dayna E. Mazzuca

Laundry Hung with High Hopes A step towards simplicity


n a step towards simplicity, I strung a clothesline out back. My kids asked what it was. I saw it as my contribution to the environment, this line running from one end of the yard to the other, past the fire pit, through the raspberry patch, supported with a makeshift centre post. It’s a symbolic hearkening back to a simpler era when mothers had time to swap stories over a glass of lemonade. “It’s to make our clothes smell nice,” I told them. “Like the wind.” “Our clothes will smell like the wind?” They considered this. “So, a clothesline is better than a dryer.”

Bring it on. I hung up sheets, quilts and at least two full loads in view of all the neighbours. I was back to nature, wrapped in clothes that smelled like the wind. A month later, things had piled up sky high, and not just the laundry. With two young children, a schedule revolving around a mini van, and me working from home, I couldn’t keep up with my new simplified version of life. The clothesline, not the dryer, became obsolete in my world. It simply proved impractical in my busy work-a-day life. Yet it was not easy to let go of my idealized version of the simple life and a renewed

My children were four and three at the time. I did at least one load of laundry a day. It added up. Considering rising heating bills and a stagnant income, I figured a clothesline was the way to go. It made sense to save money and invest time in outdoor chores, which are few and far between in the city. The unending pile of laundry also tops the list of my least favourite domestic duties. Stringing a 100-foot clothesline was my idea of making it fun. I’d always thought of myself as the hardy type. Drying clothes on a clothesline wouldn’t be a problem. If the pioneers did it, I could do it. I would show my children the way life was meant to be lived. I would free my household from its dependency on modern-day conveniences. Proudly, I had never turned on the dishwasher, preferring to get my hands wet. The dryer would become the next obsolete, money-gobbling behemoth of an appliance to get the boot.

commitment to the environment. I told myself I would find another way to make a difference, when things settled down and the kids grew up. I would get around to it. But for now, I had a mountain load of clothes to fold and put away into already crammed closets. All the while, I could already feel the tug of the line pulling on me again. That tug is still there, waiting for me to do my part. Today my kids are eight and seven years old. I’m not sure how much longer the wind will wait before a natural, more wholesome, less machine-dependent way of life passes me by. Sigh. Does anyone know where I can get a good clothesline? Because I still have high hopes for my life, my children’s lives, and… my laundry!

Register by February 18th, 2013

38  Island Parent Magazine

Dayna E. Mazzuca is working as a writer, creative workshop leader and homeschooling mom in Victoria. www.kidsinvictoria.com

15 Minutes of Fun

Pacific School of Innovation and Inquiry “The path is made by walking”

learningstorm.org @psiivictoria psii@learningstorm.org

Improving literacy skills

Not satisfied with traditional options after grade 8?


Looking for a Grade 9 to 12 school that fits your teenager and not one that expects your teenager to fit it?

Want to experience a school designed on what we now know about learning and adolescence and not what we thought we knew over a century ago?

fter a long day at school, the last thing most kids want to do is learn at home. But the benefits of learning as a family outside the classroom are huge—not only are children exposed to a culture of lifelong learning, but the bond between parent and child can grow with each teachable moment. Finding time to set aside to learn as a family can be difficult, but all you need is 15 minutes a day to reap the benefits. In honour of Family Literacy Day’s 15th anniversary, taking place across Canada on January 27, 2013, ABC Life Literacy Canada is offering five learning activities parents can do with their children in less than 15 minutes. These ideas are so fun, it will hardly even feel like learning! Read a book aloud together! Children’s books are usually short, and are a breeze to get through in 15 minutes. Heading out on a long road trip to Grandma’s house? Count how many red cars you see along the way or find the whole alphabet using license plates and billboards. Sing a song. Singing encourages learning patterns of words, rhymes and rhythms, and is strongly connected to language skills. Bake some cookies! Most recipes take less than 15 minutes to prepare, and measuring ingredients helps children understand math and numbers. Go for a walk as a family and read the street signs. You can even think of a city or country that begins with the same first letter as the sign. While we may not think of it, most of the time spent together at home can be learning opportunities between you and your child. Even time spent doing the dishes, eating dinner or having a bath can all easily have a focus on learning in a fun way.




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To find out how your family can have 15 Minutes of Fun for Family Literacy Day, visit www.FamilyLiteracyDay.ca. www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  39

Wendy Morin

Teen Substance Use


hen it comes to teen substance use, I know that scare tactics, punitive measures, threats, and attempts to control our teens are futile. Knowing this, though, I still resort to these tactics at times. I remove privileges, try to restrict my teen’s contact with friends who use substances, and yes, threaten: “You won’t be allowed to go on that trip”…“You’ll be grounded”…etc. Eventually I breathe, pause, listen—with my ears and my heart. First spews the venom: “I hate you!”…“What’s your problem?!”… “You’re a b…!”And worse, much worse. I breathe and keep listening. “You can trust me”…“I’m a good kid”…“You expect too much of me.” I sigh when I hear the last comment. I remember feeling that way, like I needed to be perfect, to be a “good girl.” The result was rebellion—and secrets. I don’t think I’m parenting that way. I don’t push for straight As, to dress a certain way, or to be a saint. But that’s what he feels at times, and I need to acknowledge that. He has three older brothers with PhDs. Why would I be

surprised he feels that way even if we don’t explicitly compare him to them? The negotiating begins. Where can I compromise and when do I need to take a stand? As a Youth and Family Substance Use Counsellor, I know too much—and yet not enough. I try to balance all I know about teen substance use, the good and the bad. I know that the majority of teens who experiment with substances do fine. They go on to become healthy, contributing members of society. I also know that some go on to a lifetime consumed by substance misuse and all the misery that comes with it. I know that all teens are at risk, even the “good” kids. I see them in my office, the broad spectrum—the athletes, the honour students, kids from homes filled with conflict, and teens with loving parents. I know the younger a person starts using substances, the more likely they’ll develop a problem with them. I know the risk factors and protective factors, and I know my son has both. If only there was a simple formula such as


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three risk factors will be counteracted by four protective factors, I could breathe a sigh of relief. It’s not that easy. Unfortunately a significant risk factor for youth who start to use substances is living in a community/society that normalizes substance use. We live in that community. Alcohol is everywhere, at sporting events, on camping trips, at birthday parties. We joke that we bring out alcohol at every event, including when families neuter their cats. Then there is marijuana. Although illegal, many in our community believe it should be legalized and used recreationally like alcohol. The advocates provide a compelling argument that marijuana is not nearly as harmful as alcohol, so should be treated in a similar fashion. Illegal or not, marijuana use is normalized in our community. For youth who start using substances early, and develop problematic use (interference with health, work, school, relationships), many point out that older siblings or adults “got them into it.” Time and time again, older teens tell me they wish they had resisted starting to use substances at such a young age, or even at all. Now that they are older, they report that being their older neighbour’s drinking buddy does not have the allure it once did. For those who grew up in homes with substance


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http://oakandorca.ca 250 383 6609 40  Island Parent Magazine

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Wendy Morin is a parent of a teen, step-parent of three, and grandparent of four. She works as a Youth and Family Substance Use counsellor at the John Howard Society of North Island.


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misuse, they have had enough. However, they emphasize that when they were 12, 13, 14, they thought differently, and it would have been impossible to convince them otherwise. How do we help our teens resist the urge to experiment, or reduce harm to them if they do start using substances? There is a fine line with parenting. If we hover like helicopters and don’t allow our kids to make any decisions, they may never learn the skills they need as they grow older. They may develop resentment, rebel, and stop communicating for fear of getting into trouble. When we are too permissive, however, or allow substance use because “all teens go through it,” our teens go through life not understanding boundaries. And they may end up with serious problems or addiction. In these times of parental stress, I think of the “village,” the healthy community that surrounds my son. They are grandmas, uncles, aunts, and older brothers. They are my neighbours, friends, and the parents of my teen’s friends. I visualize this inner circle and shift my focus outward—to allies at the school, my book club, theatre friends, co-workers. I send emails, and make calls. “I’m struggling,” I admit. “I need support.” And the village responds—by listening, by validating, by gently questioning and challenging. We chat online, over coffee, in the school parking lot, or at a potluck. We compare household rules, what’s reasonable. We chuckle over “Oh, your rules are similar to mine—my kid tried to convince me otherwise.” We talk about values, our own and those of the rest of the community. How do we reconcile both? We discuss the tough stuff. So and so smokes pot with his daughter, how do we work with that? Did you know local teens are experimenting with heroin? The guy down the street bootlegs, but if I report him, maybe he’ll find out and retaliate. So-and-so parties with the teens and they love her, think she’s cool. How do we convince 14-year-olds that is not okay? It is an ongoing conversation and journey, made easier by many minds and viewpoints joining together. “It takes a village” is not a cliché. It’s a necessity. Our youth need positive role modeling from adults in the community, along with their parents. Let’s join together and, for our kids’ sake, be that village.

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January 2013  41

Meadow Dykes

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Island Parent Magazine

Docket: ABC-0036 Project: ABC - Family Literacy

Pub: InsDate:

know from my experience with the children in my life, and especially one of my own children, that spending time outdoors helps them be calm and learn to notice and appreciate their surroundings more. I recognize, too, that when I am feeling stressed, spending some time in nature helps me. Spending time exploring in nature lets children develop many types of skills. They expand their cognitive abilities through predicting what might happen, exploring different options, and thinking about different ways of doing things. Parents can also help expand their child’s learning by introducing new words or asking questions which encourage kids to see in different ways. An easy way to get them to notice or think is to start sentences with, “I wonder…” When children are allowed to explore and imagine together, they also expand their social and emotional skills, learning to problem solve, work together, and challenge themselves mentally and physically. Being able to test their abilities and learn their boundaries helps them learn to challenge and limit themselves in other aspects of their lives, too. Once they learn to appreciate our natural world, they will hopefully become more interested in preserving it for future generations. Spending blocks of fairly unstructured time outside in a space where children can explore, using their large and small motor skills as well as their imaginations, is beneficial, but children can also benefit from smaller, more controlled contact with nature. If you do not feel comfortable or have the time to explore outside, there are many ways you can start to introduce the natural world to your children. Caring for a pet fish or hamster, being in a room with lots of natural light and plants, growing their own herbs or flowers, using natural items such as leaves in art projects, or having flowers on the dinner table are all simple ways for us to interact with the natural world.

Be Prepared Before taking children out in nature, think about what you might need. You will all enjoy it more if you are comfortable. Make sure you are dressed appropriately for the weather and have water and snacks or a picnic to keep you going. In my family, everyone who is three or older carries their

own day pack with a water bottle, snacks, notebook, and any extra clothes they might need, which might include a bathing suit or extra gloves depending on the season and where we’re going. Wear a hat and sturdy shoes. If you have older children, bringing along notebooks and pencils, magnifying glasses, measuring tapes, binoculars, a camera, or books about plants and birds you might see could help get them started. Younger children are generally more eager to explore and need little prompting, but can also benefit from these supports. Being in nature is good for adults, too! Share your interest and your kids will discover their own. If you love camping, take your kids. If you look forward to skiing or curling each winter, consider introducing the sport to your children. I have a friend who loves beachcombing, and his son spots things my kids don’t even notice. When my daughter started collecting beach glass last summer, her younger brother did, too. If you don’t have a particular interest, follow your child’s lead—I learned to notice ants and spiders when a toddler I was caring for showed an interest in them.

Heading Out You don’t have to be an expert—the most important thing is to be open to possibilities. Walk along a beach, stopping to turn over rocks or build a fort. Pick a path and hike up Mt. Doug, then take the time to look out across our beautiful city. Drive out to Goldstream with a book on local trees and see how many you can identify. We are so lucky to live in an area surrounded by beaches and parks. If you need more ideas, check online. For information about CRD Parks, visit www.crd.bc.ca/parks. Allow time to explore and be willing to vary your plans. Sometimes a certain tree or a puddle of water will catch your child’s attention. If you follow their lead and explore, without worrying about missing out on a hike or other planned activity, you may learn more about the tree or puddle and your child than you imagined. Meadow Dykes is a parent of four children who has spent many hours outside with children. She is currently working on her Early Learning and Care diploma at Camosun. www.kidsinvictoria.com

What Are Friends For? S

tand by me” is a common refrain when it comes to friendship, but new research from Concordia University proves that the concept goes beyond pop music: keeping friends close has real physiological and psychological benefits. The presence of a best friend directly affects children going through negative experiences, as reported in the recent Concordia-based study, which was published in the journal Developmental Psychology and conducted with the collaboration of researchers at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Feelings of self-worth and levels of cortisol, a hormone produced naturally by the adrenal gland in direct response to stress, are largely dependent on the social context of a negative experience.

“Having a best friend present during an unpleasant event has an immediate impact on a child’s body and mind,” says co-author William M. Bukowski, a psychology professor and director of the Concordia Centre for Research in Human Development. “If a child is alone when he or she gets in trouble with a teacher or has an argument with a classmate, we see a measurable increase in cortisol levels and decrease in feelings of self-worth.” A total of 55 boys and 48 girls from grades 5 and 6 in Montreal schools took part in the study. Participants kept journals on their feelings and experiences over the course of four days and submitted to regular saliva tests that monitored cortisol levels. Although previous studies have shown that friendships can protect against later

K-9 Distributed Learning

adjustment difficulties, this study is the first to demonstrate that the presence of a friend results in an immediate benefit for the child undergoing a negative experience. “Our physiological and psychological reactions to negative experiences as children impact us later in life,” explains Bukowski. “Excessive secretion of cortisol can lead to significant physiological changes, including immune suppression and decreased bone formation. Increased stress can really slow down a child’s development.” When it comes to feelings of self-worth, Bukowski says, “What we learn about ourselves as children is how we form our adult identities. If we build up feelings of low self-worth during childhood, this will translate directly into how we see ourselves as adults.” The study builds on previous research at Concordia that has shown multiple friendships inoculate against negative outcomes such as bullying, exclusion and other kinds of aggression. “The Presence of a Best Friend Buffers the Effects of Negative Experiences,” was originally published in the journal Developmental Psychology.

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January 2013  43

Kim Bannerman

Fossil Field Trip Fun and fossils at the Courtenay Museum


ixty million years ago, Vancouver Island was a very different place than it is today. Covered by shallow tropical seas, this region was home to strange creatures of all shapes and sizes—from tiny crabs and ghostly shrimp to massive long-necked elasmosaurs and fierce crocodile-like mosasaurs. Were these creatures a little frightening? Of course. Do they also inspire the imagination of Island kids? Absolutely! As soon as children walk into the Courtenay and District Museum and Paleontology Centre, they are greeted by a life-sized replica of a juvenile elasmosaur, and the smiles that result are a clear indication of how much kids love dinosaurs. With fossils displays, multi-media presentations, dynamic murals, and a newly-installed replica of a tylosaurus skeleton that stretches over 11 meters long, visitors to the Courtenay Museum can catch

a glimpse of what life might have been like in the region millions of years ago. “The museum is the perfect place to bring children because we have programs that lead children into discovery and investigation,” says Deborah Griffiths, the curator of the museum. “For young people, the act of learning is tied to discovery, and that’s what the museum’s programs are based upon.” Vancouver Island is home to an active network of professional and amateur paleontologists, and new discoveries are always being made. The fossil collection displayed at the museum reflects the curiosity, vitality, and excitement of discovery. “Not only does the museum have replicas, it also has the real thing—ancient creatures that are still being unearthed,” says Griffiths. Their fossil collection is unsurpassed on Vancouver Island, and children can examine an amazing range of sizes, from huge ammonites and sea

turtles to miniscule shark’s teeth. Museum guides and volunteers are available to talk with children about dinosaurs and fossil hunting, as well as examine and identify fossils that visitors have found and bring in. The museum is the first stop on the Canadian Fossil Trail, a collection of centres and museums highlighting Canada’s rich fossil deposits. It’s also a world-class destination for fossil enthusiasts, and has worked in conjunction with the Royal Tyrell Museum, international researchers, and amateur paleontologists to explore Vancouver Island’s prehistory. During the summer of 2012, the Courtenay Museum brought in new exhibits to give visitors a greater understanding of the 400 million years of prehistory on Vancouver Island. Kids will delight at the tylosaurus’ huge jaws, the fascinating replicas of vampire squid, and the 13-metre-long elasmosaur skeleton on display. If you have an amateur earth scientist in your family, this is the place to visit on Vancouver Island. In addition to the exhibits, the Courtenay Museum provides a wide range of children’s programs which have been designed to explore ancient life, science and nature, and social history. There are also guided fossil tours suitable for families which allow visitors to explore

Salty Sundays Join us for an afternoon of family fun every second Sunday of the month between 1 and 3pm Jan. 13 - Life in the Coast Guard Feb. 10 - Chinese Dragons Mar. 10 - Moving Day

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mmbc.bc.ca | 28 Bastion Square | 250-385-4222

44  Island Parent Magazine


the river valleys and forests of the Comox Valley while searching for their own fossils. “Every day-time program the museum provides, both in natural and social history, is geared towards children,” says Griffiths. “The fossil tours, which are busiest in the summer, are popular with families from around the globe. Plus, we have Kids Camps in the summer time and specific programs for homeschool students throughout the winter months; these have been designed to meet school curricula.”

The Courtenay and District Museum and Paleontology Centre’s fossil collection is unsurpassed on Vancouver Island, and children can examine an amazing range of sizes, from huge ammonites and sea turtles to miniscule shark’s teeth. And which exhibits ignite children’s excitement the most? Griffiths laughs, “Absolutely, it’s the large 80-million-year-old marine animals: the elasmosaur and now, the tylosaurus.” In addition to fossils and paleontology, the museum also includes exhibits in First Nations history, pioneer settlement history, social history of the Comox Valley, geology, logging and lumber history, and a series of changing exhibitions. The Courtenay and District Museum is located in the Comox Valley, approximately a two-and-a-halfhour drive north of Victoria. The museum is open year round, and admission is by donation. For more information, call 250334-0686 or visit the museum online at www.courtenaymuseum.ca. Now that winter weather has arrived, Vancouver Island’s museums provide a great place to introduce children to the fascinating story of the area, especially if that story stretches back 80 million years. If your family contains an amateur earth scientist or an aspiring paleontologist, or even if you just love dinosaurs, a trip to the Courtenay and District Museum and Paleontology Centre is a great way to spend a rainy afternoon. Kim Bannerman is the parent of a six-yearold girl and a two-year-old boy. She was born and grew up on Vancouver Island and is very proud to be an Island parent! www.IslandParent.ca

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250-383-5125 | 912 Vancouver Street | www.cathedralschool.ca January 2013  45

Smoking Prevention Tips for Parents Child, Youth & Family Community Health South Island Health Units Esquimalt 250-519-5311 Gulf Islands 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

Central Island Health Units Duncan 250-709-3050 Ladysmith 250-755-3342 Lake Cowichan 250-749-6878 Nanaimo 250-755-3342 Nanaimo Princess Royal 250-755-3342 Parksville/Qualicum 250-947-8242 Port Alberni 250-731-1315 Tofino 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


46  Island Parent Magazine


very day, up to 99,000 young people around the world start smoking. Tobacco use and addiction usually begins in adolescence or younger—few people take up smoking after their teen years. And youth who begin smoking before the age of 15 double their risk of an early death. It’s important that parents and communities work together to stop youth from smoking in order to prevent tobacco-related illness and death.

• Establish a smoke-free policy in your home. Don’t allow anyone to smoke indoors at any time. • Expect peer pressure. Friends who smoke can be convincing, so be aware if any of your child’s friends are smokers. You can give your child the tools he or she needs to refuse cigarettes. Rehearse how to handle

Healthy Families; Happy Families

Tips for Parents • Tell your children honestly and directly that you don’t want them to smoke. Parents are the most important influence in their children’s lives. Teens whose parents set the firmest smoking restrictions tend to smoke less than do teens whose parents don’t set smoking limits. The same goes for teens who feel close to their parents. • Start talking to your children about smoking when they are five or six years old and continue through their high school years. Many kids start smoking at age 11 and some are addicted by age 14. Give them clear, consistent messages about the risks of smoking. • Explain the health dangers, as well as the unpleasant physical aspects of smoking. For example, smoking gives you bad breath and wrinkles. Smoking makes your clothes and hair smell, and it turns your teeth yellow. Smoking can leave you with a chronic cough and less energy for sports and other enjoyable activities. • Set a good example for your children by not smoking. Parents who smoke are more likely to have children who smoke. Quit smoking if you’re a parent who smokes—it’s the best thing you can do to have a positive influence on your children. The earlier you stop smoking, the less likely your child is to become a smoker. • If you are a smoker, talk to your children about how difficult it is to quit smoking and how much easier it would have been if you’d never started in the first place. In the meantime, don’t smoke around your children and don’t ever let them have any of your cigarettes.

C hild Y ou th & Family C ommu nity Health


tough social situations. It might be as simple as saying, “No thanks, I don’t smoke.” The more your child practices this basic refusal, the more likely he or she will say no at the moment of truth. • Understand the attraction. Smoking can be a form of rebellion or a way to fit in with a particular group of friends. Some kids begin smoking to control their weight. Others smoke to feel cool or independent. • Ask your child how he or she feels about smoking. Applaud your child’s good choices, and talk about the consequences of bad choices. • You might also talk with your child about how tobacco companies try to influence ideas about smoking through, for example, advertisements or product placement in the movies that create the perception that smoking is glamorous and more prevalent than it really is. • Support tobacco-free schools and insist that school health programs include tobacco-use prevention education. Support efforts to make public places smoke-free and increase taxes on tobacco products. Make sure that the events your children attend are smoke-free. • Think beyond cigarettes. Smokeless tobacco, clove cigarettes and candy-flavored cigars and cigarillos are sometimes mistaken as less harmful or addictive than are traditional cigarettes. Children also often think that water pipe (hookah) smoking is safe. www.kidsinvictoria.com

Nothing could be further from the truth. These all carry health risks. • Avoid threats and ultimatums if you find out that your son or daughter is smoking. Ask a few questions and find out why they are smoking; he or she may want to be accepted by a peer group, or want your attention. Talk about what changes can be made in his or her life to help them stop smoking. • Help your child to do the math. Smoking is expensive. Help them calculate the weekly, monthly or yearly cost of smoking a pack a day. Help them compare the cost

Start talking to your children about smoking when they are five or six years old and continue through their high school years. of smoking with that of electronic devices, clothes or other essentials. • Point out that he or she is probably already addicted to nicotine. The tobacco industry spends billions of dollars each year to make sure their products are as appealing and as addictive as possible. Ask your child to think about how they’ve been manipulated and used by tobacco companies. This realization makes many young smokers angry and can help their motivation to quit. • Do not order your child to quit immediately. It’s important to realize that young smokers become addicted to nicotine very quickly because they are still growing, and that can make quitting very difficult. Be patient and supportive as your child goes through the quitting process. The BC QuitNow program is designed to help smokers quit (www.notontobacco.com), and may be able to give you the tools you or they need to be successful. (QuitNow Services are operated by the BC Lung Association and supported through grant funding from the BC Ministry of Health, under the Healthy Families BC initiative: www.quitnow.ca). Carla Kane, RN, BScN, is a Practice Consultant with the Tobacco Prevention and Control Program of the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA), 250-360-1450.


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February 4 to February 8, 2013 at your neighbourhood school. All children born in 2008 are eligible to begin Full Day Kindergarten.

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To register at your neighbourhood school please bring:  Proof of your child’s age (birth certificate).  Proof of your address (resident driver’s license, utility bill, etc).  Your child’s BC Care Card. French Immersion registrations:  Deep Cove Elementary (North Zone)  Keating School (South & Central Zone) After February 8, all K-8 registrations will be done at: Saanich School Board Office 2125 Keating Cross Road, Saanichton 8am to 4pm Kindergarten Information Evening: January 30, 2013, 7pm - 8:30pm (Includes French Immersion Option K-12)

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Get With the Game


he weekend consisted of a basketball game and a dance competition—by themselves, benign occurrences which come and go and mean little to the world. Simple, pleasurable things which usually provide people with a means of exercise and self-expression. It never occurred to me that either would end in tears, flared tempers, and lessons learned. The basketball game was part of a noncompetitive league for young girls to learn new skills and get an introduction to organized sports. “Non-competitive,” I believe, is a euphemism for “Parents, settle down and let your kids play and have fun.” In reality, it is a competitive, serious, and sometimes downright feisty little league where these girls are learning some other lessons besides how to pass the ball. The parents are learning some as well. The dance competition. Lots of dresses, lots of trussed up hair, hairspray, dance shoes, and girls practicing their steps in all corners. Happiness in the form of wins, foiled by the angst of not placing. More les-

sons being learned. Learned by the dancers, and learned by the parents. This all seems like the normal procedure for the parents of two young girls. In my simple mind, it should be. I suppose I had this preconceived notion that there would be some clapping, some cheering, some words of encouragement from my wife and me, and the weekend activities would be deemed a success by all. Ninety minutes of activity with a leisurely trip to Vancouver. No drama, and good times had by all. Isn’t this what it is all about? My daughter’s basketball game was a lively contest with some scrapes and bruises, and some tears on both sides. It was tough to watch as a father. Not because I am reasonable and calm in the face of fierce competition, though. It was because the desire to win overcame me with the same ferocity that came over the players. My cheering grew louder as the game progressed. I started to believe our team was incapable of fouling, while the opponents fouled at every turn. By the end of the game, I believed the parents on

the other side were all my sworn enemies. It was made worse by the fact that my youngest daughter was in tears, most likely by the emotional intensity more than anything else. I was a different person, overtaken by the

Dadspeak Frank o’Brien need to win, and willing to do whatever it took in that moment to secure it. The dance competition from the outside looked very calm and friendly. I always enjoy the other parents and the music, and revel in the overall atmosphere. I grew up with my sister doing the same type of dancing—reels, slip jigs, and hornpipes are tunes which are familiar and comfortable. When it was my older daughter’s time to dance, however, the familiarity faded. I became the same parent who wanted to run onto the basketball court and trip up eight-year-old girls. I became over-protective and frantic. Other parents became opponents. There were no longer friends, just potential stepping stones and

Our focus is on her. We provide a personalized learning experience in an environment where girls can be daring, gain confidence and discover their passions. Learn why girls thrive here:


Friday, February 15 9-11am & 1-3pm 1080 Lucas Avenue


Day Grades Preschool-12 | Boarding Grades 7-12 Discover why girls thrive here at stmarg.ca

48  Island Parent Magazine


obstacles. My daughter did not perform the way she wanted. The emotions ran high for everyone involved, including me. In both cases, the lessons learned by my daughters were extremely important. Games will not always go the way you hope. You might need to practice more to attain a desired result. These sometimes hard-learned rules are great reasons to put our children into organized activities with some competition involved. Another great reason is to learn about ourselves. I was upset at the basketball game. In my mind, I was back in high school. I was fervent in my temporary belief that the other parents were bad people, working hard to

I made it through the weekend and learned a lesson which is ongoing for all of us; all pervasive in its breadth and so simple it is often forgotten. bring their children up for the sole purpose of making the world a terrible place for us all. At the dance competition, I became paranoid. My daughter’s dress wasn’t clean enough. I didn’t make her practice enough, and I wasn’t as properly prepared as the other parents. I sized up parents instead of focusing on the real reason for my presence there. In retrospect, I let the emotion of each event, valuable in its own right, cloud my better judgement. These were great experiences. The greatest experiences are so often the toughest ones. The experiences we remember are the ones where our bodies get tested and our egos get battered and bruised just enough to allow us to walk away and learn from the moment. My daughters learned how to overcome obstacles and expect the unexpected, becoming more prepared for life events. I made it through the weekend and learned a lesson which is ongoing for all of us; all pervasive in its breadth and so simple it is often forgotten. Every time my daughters learn something important, I do too. Every time our kids learn, we learn about ourselves.

Why choose Cordova Bay Preschool? • Open House: February 9, 2013: 10am–1pm • 2 ECEs and parent helper in every class • class hours are 9:15am–12:15pm for 3 year olds and 9:15am–1:15pm for 4 year olds • non-duty option • a warm, inviting facility with a safe, enclosed playground

5182 Cordova Bay Road

(behind St. David’s by the Sea Anglican Church)

250-658-3441 www.cordovabaypreschool.org A member of the Vancouver Island Cooperative Preschool Association (VICPA)

OPEN HOUSE Childcare Ages 1–5

Saturday, January 26th 2:00pm – 4:00pm 286 Island Highway

Where Children Are Honoured for Who They Are

Frank O’Brien is the father of Aideen and Megan, and husband of Amanda. He is currently working on a book about his experience in the restaurant industry. www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013  49

A Light in the Darkness


t’s hard to deny that January is a difficult month to deal with: the glitter and glamour of Christmas and New Year’s fades away all too quickly and winter wastes no time in reasserting its cold, gritty grip on the world. It’s at a time such as this that we need more than ever to feel inspired; we need to see light in the darkness. We need the utterly extraordinary Sir Terry Pratchett. Famous for his incredibly imaginative, wickedly funny Discworld series, Pratchett is considered to be one of the finest fantasy writers of our age. He is, however, much more than that. Pratchett’s gifts lie not only in his ability to transport and amuse us, but his ability to reveal us to ourselves: his novels are more than fantastic comedies—they’re social commentaries of the first order. A perfect example of this social astuteness and verbal prowess can be found in his latest best-seller for 12+, Dodger (Doubleday UK, 2012). It’s a self-proclaimed “historical fantasy” that offers a new look at the works of Charles Dickens and a coming-of-age tale you won’t forget in a hurry. Featuring a cast of characters that includes Benjamin Disraeli, Angela Burdett-Coutts, Sweeny Todd, Ada Lovelace, and of course, “Mister Charlie”—a quick-witted journalist always on the lookout for a good story—Dodger soars along on a narrative that is not only exciting and amusing, but thought-provoking and informative. Pratchett offers us a rare view of Victorian London, as seen from the sewers up, and told in the voice of a true English gentleman. Dodger is a “tosher,” a sewer scavenger who makes a living off the


Island Parent Magazine

coins and bits of jewellery that get washed up in—or sometimes down—London’s sewer system. Dodger knows everyone of importance in London, from the flower girls to the shonky-shop man, while remaining blissfully ignorant and even better, ignored, by the rest of society. Ignored, that is, until a dark and stormy night, when one altruistic act results in a rescue, and thrusts this artful Dodger into a shady underworld filled with murder and intrigue: the murky arena of international politics. Suddenly, a great many people are very interested in getting to know Dodger—and very few of them wish him well. Often compared to Jonathan Swift, Pratchett satirizes everything from religious and racial intolerance, to parenting and education, government, and children’s predilection for bathroom humour. But what differentiates Pratchett from other humorists of a similar type is not the breadth of his subject matter, but rather, the depth. Pratchett doesn’t flinch, even when addressing the darkest subjects and, more importantly, he never, ever, loses his humanity. There are no simple monsters in Pratchett’s worlds—even the bogeymen are multifaceted—and as in our own world, the most frightening creatures are often human. His heroes are no less complex as they are frequently those, not whom destiny has chosen, but who choose to accept the responsibility of doing what needs to be done: Johnny Maxwell, star of Johnny and the Bomb (Corgi 2004, 10+) and the companion series, sees things that other people don’t—like Mrs. Tachyon,

the mad bag lady—a gift which lands him back in time; Tiffany, witch and hero of The Wee Free Men (Corgi 2010, 9+), sets out to rescue her stolen brother from the Queen of the Fairies, not because she likes him, but

Book Nook maddY Smith because someone has to do it; Susan, governess and Death’s granddaughter in Hogfather (Corgi 1998, 12+) fame, just wants one quiet normal holiday to herself…but ends up saving all of reality; and of course, Dodger, a lad of questionable morals when it comes to cutlery and little skill in the matter of reading, shows greater understanding and intelligence when it comes to human beings than do most monarchs. Pratchett’s characters, like Dickens’, never grow old, never feel static—they are as vibrant and richly drawn as any person alive today. Similarly, Pratchett’s books, like Dickens’, are written, not for an age, but for all ages. You draw as much from Pratchett as you are ready for when you come to him. Master storyteller, ardent wit, searing satirist…no matter the epithet, Sir Terry Pratchett surpasses it with ease. He is light, certainly, but he’s light as fire is light, or a star—brilliant, illuminating, dazzling. He drives back the darkness, and guides us towards the promise of morning. Maddy Smith is a children’s bookseller and an Islander born and bred; she reads, writes, and believes in the magic of a great book.


H Hampton Little League

Baseball - Softball - Challengers Registration Dates and Times:

Ages 4 -13 by April 30, 2013 – Girls & Boys Baseball Ages 7 - 18 by Dec 31, 2012 – Girls Softball Ages 5 - 20 – Boys and Girls Challenger Division

Jan. 27th 1 – 4 PM Feb. 2 & 3, 9 &10 from 1-4 PM Feb. 13th from 6:30 - 9 PM


At the Clubhouse (Across from Burnside Plaza)


Division & Registration information TBall Minis, Rookies, Minors Majors Intermediate Jr. Sr. & BL

Due on registration Date:

$65 $90 $125 $125 $125

 

$40 Fundraising fee – redeemable $40/player concession fee - work a shift for a $30 refund. a copy of your child’s birth certificate, care card number 3 pieces of address verification $100 chq for uniform dep. Postdated to 07/01/13.


Registration Incentive: Bring in a new fully paid Little League registrant and you will receive a $10 concession voucher.



Blastball is a novice version of T-ball for the under aged Little Leaguers! Open to all girls and boys 2-5 years old. All games Saturday mornings. Registration includes: 10 Games with Hat/T-shirt, Team Picture, and Year End Award! No extra fees required for Blastball – not an affiliated LL program.

Hampton Little League is proud to host the Provincial 11-12 Baseball Championships! All 9 to 13 year old players are eligible to try out for our 2013 tournament teams. Minor Tournament to be held at Hampton on the May Long Weekend! Being part of Hampton Little League is more than just sports, we are a community! We have several special events throughout the season such as Funday, Pitch, Hit & Run, a Dance, a Coaches vs. Managers ball game, as well as

Player Development Clinics - happening now. Don’t miss out – contact us for information so you can be a part of it all! www.hamptonlittleleague.org or 250-385-0022 and 250-361-9614. *We also offer youth and adult umpiring training*


January 2013  51

Shine Your Light


hese are the dark days: days of long nights, short days, and bone-penetrating chills. Our basic animal nature urges us to huddle in warm spaces, moving only languidly in small increments to conserve our energy. We seldom see sunshine during these winter months—when the light pushes its pallid way through the grey carpet of clouds, we are tucked away indoors, at work or school. We leave our houses in the morning in a dim twilight, and return home in the late afternoon under the orange haze of street lights, accompanied by the hiss of passing vehicles pushing through puddles on the streets. Hibernation sounds like a good plan—in fact, it sounds like the very thing we should be doing now, if not sooner, except for the pesky issues of too few convenient dens, and the fact that humans need to eat regularly. Balance between our inner lives and outer lifestyles is always important, but at times of vulnerability, when we are tired and cold and lacking in the natural boost given us by the sun, it is imperative. If we don’t care for ourselves, we can care for no one else. Happiness is self-perpetuating: the

When all of the milk has been added, bring to a boil, stirring to prevent scorching, until thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in mustard, garlic, and then add cheese bit by bit, stirring

more that one has, the more one wants to share (kind of like love, actually). We need to keep our inner lights burning bright, stoking and nourishing the fires that fuel us with warmth and compassion for ourselves, so that we’re all charged up to put that good energy out into our world, and make it all a bit brighter.

Just Eat It! KathY humPhReY

Mac ’n Cheese 3 cups uncooked pasta of any kind (macaroni, penne, even stuffed tortellini) 2 Tbsp butter 1⁄4 cup flour 2 cups milk 1 cup grated Cheddar cheese 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard 1 clove garlic, minced 4 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed 1 cup bread crumbs 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese Cook pasta in very large pot of salted water. Drain, and set aside. In small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour to make paste, and cook, stirring constantly, for about five minutes. Very gradually, add milk, continuing to stir all the time, using a fork or a whisk.

until melted. Mix cheese sauce into pasta, then add spinach. Spoon all into greased casserole dish, spread bread crumbs over, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Pop into preheated 350˚F oven, and cook for about 45 minutes, or until mixture is bubbly and bread crumb topping is a bit golden.

Shepherd’s Pie 1 lb ground beef 1⁄2 onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 carrots, chopped 1 cup frozen peas 2 Tbsp tomato paste Salt and pepper, to taste

Jump into the adventure and let friendship fill each day. Experience a world of discovery, all with an amazing staff.



www.qwanoes.ca LIFE LIKE NO OTHER!


Island Parent Magazine



2–3 potatoes, boiled, and mashed with butter (leftovers are good) 1 small yam, boiled and mashed Brown onion. Add beef and cook, stirring, until no pink remains. Stir in garlic, carrots, peas, and tomato paste. Simmer until carrots are almost tender. Spoon all into pie plate, or shallow casserole. Mix potatoes and yam, and spoon over beef mixture. Dot with butter, and bake at 350˚F for 30–40 minutes.

Hot & Smoky Black Bean Stew

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s St.

3045–C Douglas St. (Rear) 386-2229 www.tjskids.com

Finlayson St. Dougla

2 each sweet green and red peppers 1 Tbsp vegetable oil 2 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" cubes 1 onion, chopped 4 cloves garlic, minced 1⁄2 tsp each ground cumin and salt 1⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon 1 can (28 ounces) plum tomatoes 3 cups cooked black beans 2 chipotle peppers, minced 1 Tbsp adobo sauce (optional) 1⁄2 tsp oregano Fresh cilantro for garnish, if desired Heat large pot over medium flame. Add oil, and when that is heated, add onion, peppers, garlic, potatoes, cumin, salt and cinnamon until onion is softened, about 5–10 minutes. Add one cup water, cover, bring to a boil, and then simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, drain tomatoes, reserving juice, and cut into quarters. Add tomatoes and their juice, beans, chipotles, adobo sauce and oregano to pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until thickened, about 30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro, if using.  


Larch St.


(Under Sleep Country in the REAR)

Warming Ginger Soup

2 Tbsp olive oil 4 small leeks, thoroughly washed and sliced 2 Tbsp grated fresh ginger 2 large parsnips, peeled and chopped into small pieces 11⁄2 cups dry white wine 5 cups vegetable broth paprika Heat large pan over low flame. Pour in oil. Add leeks and ginger root. Cook until leeks begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Add parsnips, and cook 6 minutes more. Pour in wine and stock. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Purée until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with paprika, if desired. Kathy Humphrey lives in Victoria with her husband and two children. She tries to see cooking for a family not as a chore but as a creative outlet.


January 2013  53

Family Services Directory This directory, sponsored by Thrifty Foods, features not for profit agencies and organizations serving children, youth and families. BC Families in Transition (formerly the Separation and Divorce Resource Centre) is one of three non-profit agencies in North America that offers professional counselling, legal support and education for people who are having problems in their relationships. Each year we help 10,000 adults, children and youth through family changes, separations and divorces, remarriages, and complex family situations. Whether you wish to separate or remain together, call us at 250-386-4331 or visit www.bcfit.org to see how we can help. Some evening and weekend appointments available. Beacon Community Services, a community-based, non-profit social, employment and health services agency, serving Greater Victoria, Saanich Peninsula and the Southern Gulf Islands. Providing these services: 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 250-658-6407, for all other inquiries call 250-656-0134 or visit www. beaconcs.ca. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Victoria provides mentoring programs to children in schools and communities. Adult ‘Bigs’, and child ‘Littles’, build a friendship based on shared interests, respect, trust, and the magic of everyday moments shared with a friend. Everyone needs someone to laugh with, to share a dream with, and just to hang out. No special skills, money, or experience are needed to be a mentor to a child, just a willingness to spend time together, to


listen, and to be a friend and advocate—in as little as one hour a week! The positive impact of mentorship lasts for a lifetime. Contact us at 250-475-1117, email main@bbbsvictoria.com, or at our website www.bbbsvictoria.com Boys & Girls Club Services offer after-school and evening social, educational and recreational programming for youth at four locations. We also offer support to parents of teens (Parents Together) and run Adventure Based Learning programs at our Camp in Metchosin. For more information on all our programs visit our website at www.bgcvic.org. For general information on after-school and evening programs at our 4 Community Clubs please call 250-384-9133. The Child Abuse Prevention & Counselling Society/Mary Manning Centre is the primary provider of therapy and victim support services for children and youth in Greater Victoria who experience sexual abuse, physical abuse, and other serious trauma, or who may be at risk for sexual abuse. Therapy services include individual and group sessions for children and youth and group sessions for parents. Victim services include intake and referral, accompaniment and support for children and youth being interviewed by police, and court preparation and support for those testifying as victims or witnesses in criminal cases. No charge for clients. Contact: 250-385-6111 or admin@ marymanning.com. Community Living Victoria supports people with developmental disabilities and their families by providing residential services, day and community supports (supported employment, parent support and

independent living). Our Host agency provides direct supports for those with Individualized Funding and Home Share service. We also provide Autism Services for youth between 13 and 19. Our family support program offers advocacy, conflict resolution, education, newsletters, workshops, support groups and a resource library. Please call 250-477-7231 ext 233. Esquimalt Neighbourhood House Society. Our Family Services offer family resource programs with a focus on early childhood development and learning, parenting education and pre and post-natal services. Our Counselling Services are free to adults and youth (12-18 years); adult and short term clinical counselling is offered for acute mental health problems. For more information call 250-385-2635 or visit 511 Constance Ave. in Esquimalt. 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 and the Diversity Health Fair. 930 Balmoral Rd, 250388-4728, info@icavictoria.org, www.icavictoria.org. 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. 1524 Fort St. 250-370-9513. www.ldasvi.bc.ca. Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) provides programs and services to the military family community. Services include: 24 Hour Information Line, Deployment Information and Workshops, Short Term

Looking to Buy or Sell a Home? Check out my Parent to Parent webpage at www.BriarHillGroup.com Let me find you the home that best suits your family! As a mother with two small children, I understand your family housing needs

Give me a call at 250-744-0775

Jane Johnston, M.Ed. 54  Island Parent Magazine


Intervention/Crisis Support, Welcome/Relocation Services, services for families with special needs and responsabilities and childcare services and support to parents. Exciting Volunteer opportunities available! Call the MFRC: 250-363-2640 (1-800-353-3329) for information. www.esquimaltmfrc.com. Parent Support Services Society (www. parentsupportbc.ca) provides support circles, parenting resources and referrals to all in a parenting role including grandparents raising grandchildren. Our training in peer group facilitation is open to the community. Support circles are free with child minding and transportation assistance available. Volunteers are always needed. Call 250-384-8042; email parent-support@shaw.ca. 1Up: Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre (www.1-up.ca) provides support, education and resources for parents in the Greater Victoria area through free counselling, volunteer training for reception and peer helper positions, a mentoring program for single moms, and a support group for dads. The Centre also offers over 20 integrated life skills and parenting courses which are open to the whole community (fees are by donation). Child care assistance is available based on financial need. The Centre provides a bread pantry and free clothing for single parents. Donations of gently-used clothing, small household items, books, and toys are very welcome every Monday and Wednesday. Centre hours are 9–4 weekdays. 602 Gorge Rd. East; call 250-3851114 or info@1-up.ca. South Island Centre for Counselling & Training is an affordable, non-profit, counselling agency serving individuals and families from all social, ethnic, and financial backgrounds. We help people with a wide range of issues including low self-esteem, depression, grief, marital and family conflict, abuse and spiritual direction. We also offer helpful “life” courses. For more information contact us at 250-472-2851; info@southislandcentre.ca.

Gonzales Preschool Open House! Saturday, February 2nd 10:00 am – Noon 2928 Eastdowne Road Tour the preschool. Meet our staff. Talk with participating families. Be sure to bring your child for play activities! Now accepting applications for 3 & 4 year old classes starting in September. (Also, a few spots available now!)

250-727-1003  gonzalespreschool.com

, Nurturing Victoria s children for over 50 years!

Matinees for KIDS!

All Seats $4.75

JAN 3 & 4   Brave at 11am

JAN 3 & 4   Raiders of the Lost Ark at 1pm JAN 5 & 6   Brave at 1pm JAN 12 & 13   Hotel Transylvania at 1pm JAN 19 & 20   Charlotte’s Web at 1pm


JAN 26 & 27   Wreck-it-ralph at 1pm


Student Union Building, UVIC | 721-8365

Victoria Epilepsy & Parkinson’s Centre supports families living with epilepsy by providing tutoring and one on one professional consultations to help your child to live up to their full potential. We offer epilepsy education workshops in private and public schools, and keep you up to date on the latest research about medications, lifestyle and safety for your child. Visit us at www.vepc.bc.ca to find out more, and to explore our bursaries for Camosun College. Calls are also welcome at 250475-6677.


January 2013  55

Getting Our Cloth On


he madness began when I saw a magazine photo of a perfectly chubby baby, standing in a meadow, wearing a cherry-print diaper—an adorable all-natural diaper, soft as could be, scattered with tiny red fruit on a pale pink background. It was like a golden halo beamed down from the heavens. At that moment, I was hooked. I had to switch to cloth, and now. Umm…hello? said the voice of reason in my head. Have you completely lost your mind? Your third and last kid has just turned one. One! And now you decide it’s time to buy cloth diapers? I had to admit, my voice of reason was right. It wasn’t logical. It wasn’t rational. It wasn’t even hormonal. No, my cloth diapering fever was based on two things: guilt—and cherries.  Up until that point, I had made my peace with using disposables. I felt terrible every time I threw one away. But when we first started diapering, we lived in a tiny apartment with an even tinier washer, and I dismissed the idea of using cloth diapers as too much hassle. We later moved to a

larger suite with a laundry closet. And then to a house with a proper laundry room. But somehow, I continued to justify my throwaway diapers. I had to keep it quiet, mind you. Around these parts, using disposable anything is an offense likely to get you evicted from the Island, and maybe even the province. We do earth-friendly around here, and we do it big time. I was aware of the cloth diapering trend gaining momentum…I was just afraid to go there.  Guilt has a snowball effect, however, and after six solid years of feeling bad every time I tossed a diaper, I was ready to snap. That kind of guilt, when combined with a lack of sleep and a picture of a cute baby in a cute diaper…well, it’s dangerous. I quickly learned that buying cloth diapers is not as simple as walking to the store and grabbing a pack of Pampers. No, buying diapers is on a par with investing in a new car. The number of options is simply mindboggling: Do I want a model with snaps, Velcro, or both?  Hemp or bamboo? Organic

Tall, Dark & Have Some. Only on the Island

Pick up your copy of Island Parent at any of one our 26 Serious Coffee locations. 56  Island Parent Magazine

or non? Local or imported? Low-rise or high? Pre-folded, stuffed, or lined? After several weeks of bewildered research, I took a friend’s word and ordered the diapers she recommended. When at

Is There an App for This? SARAH MILLIGAN last the package arrived, I gleefully ripped into it—until I held one up and realized I would need an engineering degree to operate it. So many snaps! Which way was up? My daughter suffered with disposables for several days while I navigated my way through the complex wilds of “prepping” the diapers. After washing umpteen times, I read that my bamboo inserts were meant to be boiled. I honestly never thought I’d call my husband to say “Bring home something for dinner—all my pots are full of diapers.” Eventually, after only one boiling-over incident, they were ready. All that remained was the final and most crucial step: applying the diaper to the baby. At this point, I almost lost my will to go on. She’s an escape artist during diaper changes. And did I mention the 15 snaps? But I persevered. I have a university degree and can change a tire in the rain. I would not be beaten by a piece of waterproof cloth with snaps! I turned to the collective wisdom of our age—YouTube—and we were in business.  That night, when hubby arrived home, I faced my next obstacle: convincing my spouse—who, by the way, operates several million dollars worth of machinery for a living—that he can handle a cloth diaper. I purposefully kept my mouth shut when he offered to change Maysa’s diaper. Sure enough, a few minutes later I heard a plaintive “Uh…Honey? What’s with this thing on her butt?” We’ve been in training for several weeks, and he is still pretending to be helpless. But the ball is rolling now. The diapers are cute. It’s a little easier to put them on every time. I no longer feel guilty. And my daughter’s tiny bottom is clad—in adorable cherries.  But I’m keeping a drawer full of disposables. For her father’s sake, of course. Sarah Milligan writes at www.findingabundance.com. Please stop by and say hello! www.kidsinvictoria.com

Greater Victoria School District #61 invites you to…

Welcome to school

Parent Information Evenings S.J. Willis education centre, auditorium | 923 topaz avenue learn more about our District’s exciting Kindergarten programs.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

6:30 – 8:00 pm | General Kindergarten Information

Thursday, January 24, 2013

6:30 – 7:30 pm | Early French Immersion Registration Information for Kindergarten & Grade 1 Entry We invite you to visit our website at www.sd61.bc.ca In 2012, our graduates received over $3.9 million in scholarships! www.IslandParent.ca

January 2013


Preschool & Child Care Directory CENTRAL SAANICH

Victoria Conservatory of Music. Part-time spaces available. www.islandkids.ca.

Chrysalis Child Care..........................250-652-0815 A nurturing and stimulating environment for a small group of 3–5 year olds. Qualified ECE promotes learning through play.

Colwood/LANGFORD Almosthome Childcare/Preschool...250-590-7666 Quality childcare with a preschool curriculum/kindergarten readiness program. Experienced Early Childhood Educators. Nurturing environment for ages 10 months to 5 years old. www.almosthomecare.com. Caring Touch Daycare.......................250-478-4886 A warm, loving, fun family daycare in a safe, nurturing environment. Infant/toddler care for ages 1–5 years. Jenn’s Little Bears.............................250-478-8999 A safe nurturing environment for children from infancy to kindergarten. Our Infant and Toddler Program enriches each child’s development while our 3-5 Program prepares children for kindergarten. Two separate buildings allow each age group space to grow! Miles of Smiles Licensed Child Care..........................250-298-7374 Dedicated to offering quality care where caring, learning, diversity, guidance and fun are the priority. www. milesofsmileschildcare.com Music Makers Child Care Centre.....250-294-3916 Offering an innovative environment that develops musical abilities and encourages a love of music while following a preschool curriculum/kindergarten readiness program. Group care for children 2 to 6 and infant/toddler care for ages 12 to 36 months. www.musicmakerschildcare.com

CORDOVA BAY Carrot Seed Preschool......................250-652-2311 Where children can discover, imagine, construct and learn through play. Wondrous natural playground. www.carrotseedpreschool.com. Cordova Bay Preschool....................250-658-3441 A bright and cheerful parent-participation preschool with a philosophy of “learning through play.” www. cordovabaypreschool.org. Lakeview Christian Preschool..........250-658-5082 Nurturing environment for 30 month to 5 year olds in a rural setting. Christian values emphasized. Licensed Cordova Bay facility with ECE teacher.

ESQUIMALT CIARA Early Childhood Centre.........250-386-7369 Education and fun hand in hand. Exceptional care for little ones ages 12 month-5yrs in an inclusive centre with Christian values. 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 programs including swimming, skating,

La Pre-Maternelle Appletree Preschool..........................250-479-0292 French immersion preschool program. Small groups 30 months to school age. Licensed Christian centre/ECE. Simply Fun Childcare Centre............250-881-3958 A warm, loving, fun and nurturing place for children to grow and learn. We have spaces available for registration ages 2.5 to 12 in our Licensed Group Facility. We offer extraordinary childcare, before and after school programs and a preschool. Our teachers are extremely qualified with ECE training and have lots of experience. Call Brenda to set up a tour. Let your child’s light shine bright with us!

Highlands Lexie’s Little Bears’ Child Care Inc....................................250-590-3603 A 2 acre outdoor playground! A “Learning Naturally” interpretation. Our children explore, grow and learn from nature. Beside Bear Mountain. 12 months to 5 years. www.lexieslittlebears.com.


Oak Bay Co-op Preschool..................250-592-1922 Children Learn Through Play in this parent participation school. Our bright facility is allergy-free with a large outdoor playground. www.oakbaypreschool.com. Recreation Oak Bay..........................250-370-7200 Fully licensed, qualified ECE Daycare and Preschool with play based learning. After school care also available.

SAANICH Arbutus Grove Children’s Centre.....250-477-3731 (Formerly known as Goosey Gander Kindergarten) Play-based, creative, active-learning programs: half/ full day Preschool. www.arbutusgrove.ca. Cloverdale Child Care.......................... 250-995-1766 Openings available for 3 and 4 year olds for September 2012. cloverdalechildcare@shawbiz.ca, www.cloverdalechildcare.com. Island Montessori House..................250-592-4411 Inclusive, integrated and nurturing preschool, kindergarten, Grade 1/2 program. Located in a lovely rural setting. Extended day available. www. islandmontessori.com.

A Growing Place................................250-391-1133 Half day program (AM or PM) for 2.5-5 yrs. ECE educator, small class size. Our own petting farm. Summer program for July.

Lakehill Preschool.............................250-477-4141 Nurturing, warm environment for children to learn through play, with qualified, experienced ECEs. Different levels of participation available. www.lakehillpreschool.org.

Metchosin Co-op Preschool.............250-478-9241 Come and visit our stunning natural outdoor playspace, warm, nurturing, play-based,inclusive program allowing parents to grow and learn alongside their child. Exceptional ECE Staff provide an enriching experience for 2.5 - 5 year olds. Come grow with us! Est.1960. Reg. begins Mar.1 @ 9am.

Lambrick Park Preschool & Childcare............................................250-477-8131 Gordon Head’s only parent-participation preschool and childcare centre celebrating 40 years. Offering morning, afternoon and all-day preschool options, flexible participation model, and allergy protocol. www. lambrickparkpreschool.ca


Little Readers Academy....................250-477-5550 An enriched learn-to-read program for your 3-6 yearold! Reading, Writing and Math. Half-day, weekend and evening sessions available. www.oxfordlearning.com.

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. www.emmanuelpreschool.ca. Gonzales Co-op Preschool...............250-727-1003 Children explore their imaginations through our varied learning through play environments and large natural playground. Our Reggio-Emilia inspired program focuses on art, nature and music. Join us! www.gonzalespreschool.com. Kindred Spirits Children’s House........250-590-6966 Now accepting registration for a small group of 2.5–5 year olds in a purpose built Montessori classroom. The prepared environment stimulates and engages the children at their own pace with hands on, size, age and developmentally appropriate materials. www.kindredspiritschildrenshouse.com

Montessori Educare..........................250-881-8666 Beautiful learning environments in Broadmead and Saanichton. 30 months – 5 years. Summer program available. www.montessorieducare.com. My Little Folk......................................250-380-7197 Licensed In Home Multi Age Daycare in a very central location! Caregiver is Montessori and ECE Certified and has a fun and nurturing approach. Part time or full time. 7:30am-5:00pm. mylittlefolk@shaw.ca. Neighbourhood Junior Kindergarten..250-479-4410 Offering an early literacy program 4 mornings/wk. (T-F) for 4 yr. olds: play and group activities focus on developing positive social skills and kindergarten preparation. Operating in Lake Hill school in two fully equipped, bright classrooms/outdoor playground. Oakcrest Preschool...........................250-472-0668 • Two fully qualified teachers, AM classes • No duty days, wide variety of parent jobs • www.oakcrestpreschool.org

Looking for child care? Taking care of children?

Call your local Child Care Resource & Referral for free referrals and resources.

Child Care

Resource & Referral Your community’s best source of child care information and resources. 58  Island Parent Magazine

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

www.islandfamilyinfo.ca   www.ccrr.bc.ca www.kidsinvictoria.com

Preschool & Child Care Directory Playtime Preschool...........................250-383-3101 AM or PM preschool classes up to 20 hrs/ wk. Tillicum. Spacious facility, qualified ECEs. Let’s Talk About Touching Program. www. playtimepreschool.com.

Centennial Daycare...........................250-386-6832 Providing quality childcare in the Burnside/ Gorge area for 30+ years. Snacks, lunches, Sportball and Music programs included. www. centennialdaycare.ca.

View Royal Preschool........................250-479-8067 An exciting inclusive program in an exceptional care environment. Licensed 3–5 year olds. Outside play and themes enrich this program. viewroyalps@ uniserve.com.

Puddles & Paints Playschool............250-658-6573 Lexie celebrates 15 years as an ECE in the community. Excellence through enriched programming. Music, art, dance and play. Montly themes and curriculum. Supporting and encouraging your child’s individual successes.

Christ Church Cathedral Childcare.. 250-383-5132 ECE and specialist teachers provide an outstanding all day licensed program for 3 and 4 year olds in our spacious and welcoming facility in James Bay. www. cathedralschool.ca.

Mill Bay / Cobble Hill

Ready Set Grow Preschool...............250-472-1530 A warm, caring, quality Learning Through Play environment. Gordon Head area with a highly qualified ECE. heosc@pacificcoast.net. Rogers Child Care Centre.................250-744-2643 High Quality Care and Educational Programs. Licensed for children 30 month to Grade 5. rogerschildcare@ shaw.ca or www.rogerschildcare.com St. Joseph’s Catholic Preschool..............................250-479-1232 ext 120 • A Christian child centre for 3–5 year olds. • A warm nurturing and challenging program • Offered by St. Joseph’s Catholic School. St. Margaret’s Preschool & Junior Kindergarten..........................250-479-7171 Our programme for 3 and 4 year old girls offers a nurturing and educationally stimulating curriculum provided by experienced ECE staff and specialist teachers. Our state of the art facility is located in beautiful environmental surroundings. www.stmarg.ca. Strawberry Vale Preschool...............250-479-4213 Children learn through play at our parent participation preschool. Programs for 3 and 4 year olds at “The Little Red Schoolhouse.”


SIDNEY Positive Path Early Learning............250-655-7244 A “New” child care centre has opened at 2269 Mills Road. Exciting and enriching program offering learning opportunities for children 3-5 within a culture of Christian values and virtues. Centrally located near Sidney Elementary and VIR Library. Now accepting enrollment for full and part-time registration. positivepath@shaw.ca

VICTORIA ArtsCalibre Academy........................250-382-3533 Comprehensive programs for Preschool through Grade 5, delivering academic excellence through music, dance, drama and visual arts. Outstanding educators, locations and facilities. www.ArtsCalibre.ca Babies to Big Kids Childcare............... 250-590-5540 949 Fullerton Ave. Daycare owner, 250-818-9225 Licenced group childcare for children 6 months to 12 years old. Three programs offered: Infant toddler program, Three to Five Program and Before and After School Care Program. Open 6:30am-5:30pm. Weekly music and movement classes. www.babiestobigkids. com, info@babiestobigkids.com. Butterfly Corner.................................... 250-381-4845 Licensed family day care in James Bay. Since 1998. ECE. Ages 1–5. Full time. Fun & Educational. http:// ButterflyCornerCreativeLearningCentre.com Castleview Child Care.......................250-595-5355 Learning Through Play & Experience. Licensed nonprofit, qual. ECE staff. Since 1958. Preschool and full-time care. www.castleview.ca Cedar Daycare...................................250-479-2032 Community oriented, NFP Child Care facility. Wide variety of activities offered including the use of a private outdoor pool during the summer months. Licensed ECE educators devoted to nurturing children aged 30 months – 5 years.


Downtown Y Child Care Centre.......250-413-8869 Enriched program, for children ages 3-5 years, supporting healthy child development and future school success. www.victoriay.com. Lansdowne Co-op Preschool...........250-595-5223 An extraordinary learning environment for families with young children. Parent participation. wwwlansdownepreschool.com. Nightingale Preschool and Junior Kindergarten...................250-595-7544 – Taking children’s learning forward – One of Victoria’s leading preschools and Junior Kindergartens. Balanced approach to play and education. Programme supports literacy, numeracy. Visit www. nightingalepreschool.com. Fernwood. Parkdale Early Childhood Centre.....250-382-0512 We offer quality care and positive experiences for children in our diverse daycare and preschool programs. Our rich curriculum includes music classes from the Victoria Conservatory of Music. parkdalechildcare@shaw.ca. Rainbow Express Daycare................250-382-2314 Enriched preschool style program in a daycare setting. Visit our website at www.rainbow-express.bc.ca. Ross Bay Preschool..........................250-383-7445 Positive/supportive program motivating children to learn and discover. Curriculum builds on interests of the children. www.rossbaypreschool.com St. Andrew’s Catholic Preschool......250-382-3815 A place where children learn to love and love to learn. A warm and nurturing environment. A stimulating curriculum.

Starchild Centre..................................250-929-3240 Unique infant/toddler daycare, combines the best of Montessori and Waldorf. Our 9 acre hobby farm enables each child to have a garden plot, participate in planting trees, picking fruit, feeding animals, and other outside adventures. www.starchildcentre.ca.

DUNCAN Angel Care Christian Preschool.........250-746-5919 A quality, enriched program for preschool children. Located in Queen of Angels Catholic School. Maple Tree Play House Licensed Family Childcare...............250-746-5060 A daycare program that provides enriched outdoor play time and activities that build on a child’s intrinsic love of nature. Healthy meals and snacks are provided. mapletreekids@telus.net.. Parkside Academy Early Learning Centre.........................250-746-1711 Offering quality, literacy focused childcare for children aged 6 mos – 12 yrs; infant/toddler; 3–5, preschool, and after school programs at Alexander, Khowhemun and Tansor Elementary schools. Queen Margaret’s Preschool/ Junior Kindergarten..........................250-746-4185 Offering a co-ed enriched curriculum in a friendly atmosphere. Morning ECE/afternoon daycare. www.qms.bc.ca. Sunrise Waldorf School, Kindercottage Preschool Nursery......250-743-7253 A morning program for 3 and 4 yr olds in a warm natural atmosphere where wonder is nurtured and outdoor play is abundant. Details at www.sunrisewaldorfschool.org. Parent & Child programs also available!


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.

Cherry Tree Child Care Centre.........250-246-9195 Preschool program nurturing creative play and engaging learning activity. 30 months to age five. Qualified and experienced Early Childhood Educator.

Victoria Montessori...........................250-380-0534 Unique, innovative learning environment combining the best of Montessori and Learning Through Play. Open yr. round. 30mths–grade 1. www.victoriamontessori.com.

St. Joseph’s Preschool.....................250-246-3191 A Christian learning environment for 3–5 year olds. Active participation in the life of the school. Parental involvement.


Qualicum Beach

A Secret Garden Preschool..............250-380-8293 Program built on Christian values. Monthly themes, weekly topics and daily activities. asecretgardenpreschool@shaw.ca.

Children’s Discovery Centre.............250-752-4343 Our program recognizes the uniqueness of each child and provides a nurturing, safe and creative learning environment. Preschool, Groupcare, Out of School care. ECE qualified staff. childrensdiscoverycentre@ hotmail.com.

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. www.islandkids.ca. Little Friends Childcare.....................250-479-8423 “Learn through play” group childcare centre. Infants/ Toddlers/30mth–5yrs daycare and morning preschool near Knockan Hill park. Little Wonders Preschool (VROSCS)...........................................250-744-2718 A creative and suuportive program that will prepare your child for a lifetime of learning! OSC also available. www.viewroyalosc.com.

Little Star Children’s Centre.............250-752-4554 Earth friendly preschool education inspired by nature. Kinder-Prep classes. Licensed group care. ECE instructors. www.littlestardaycare.ca. littlestar@shaw.ca.

Nanaimo Nanaimo Parent Participation Preschool...........................................250-753-1939 Experienced, caring and energetic ECE using learning through play in an enriched environment. www.nanaimopreschool.com.

January 2013  59

Business & Professional Directory Move to the head of the class.

One Tutor


One Student Your Home

Discovery Toys needs new Distributors and Testers of our engaging, awardwinning educational toys, books and games!

Smart Tutor Referrals.com Professional In-Home Tutorial Support

Call 250-544-1588 to learn more.

For a Free workshop on how to choose and use our products or to start your own Discovery Toys Home Business contact:

Lisa Woo, Director & Trainer

250 477 9891  www.toylady.ca

Monarch House offers an interdisciplinary approach to treating individuals from infancy to adulthood with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities.

Monarch House - Victoria Unit 211 - 611 Discovery Street 250.220.8999 monarchhousevictoria@cbi.ca www.monarchhouse.ca

Supervised Access Visits BETTER GRADES START HERE! Pre-K to Grade 12 Confidence & Motivation Study Skills & Homework Support Regular Reports to Parents Call today and enroll! Victoria 250.477.5550

203-1595 McKenzie Ave. Victoria, BC, V8N 1A4 victoria@oxfordlearning.com


Massage Therapy Kirsten Hammond

Registered Massage Therapist 957 Verdier Ave, Brentwood Bay, BC • therapeutic, relaxation, deep tissue, sports massage, pre and post natal massage • family practice with over 10 years experience • childcare available • online booking

evolutionsmassagetherapy.ca kirsten@evolutionsmassagetherapy.ca


60  Island Parent Magazine

Looking for a way to ease the stress of being Separated or Divorced with Children? Professional Services Flexible hours (including weekends)

Vancouver Island Parenting Consultations In-Home Private Consultations, Customized Parenting Plans

Transition Services for Families Phone  250-590-4114 Email  info@tsconsultingvictoria.ca or find us online at

• Infant Sleep Problems • Toddler Temper Tantrums  • Sibling rivalry • School aged children just not listening Hayley Sinai can help you. 20 years experience working with children and families…




Natural Health Care for Children

Celebrating our “Original” Outdoor Learning Program!

Homeopathy & Nutrition for: • Autism & ASD • Developmental Disorders • Behavioural Disorders • Ear Infections • Asthma • Eczema

www.drzimmermann.org 250-590-5828

We bring your child’s classroom…OUTSIDE!” • “Life is playfulness. We need to play so that we can rediscover the magic all around us.” – Flora Colao • Our property boasts 2 acres of forest with 2 huge natural play spaces for the children to discover! • Providing a quality Natural program through outdoor play, starting your child on the right path towards a healthy, active forever lifestyle.

Learn and grow with us!


New Pics at

www.lexieslittlebears.com www.kidsinvictoria.com



nnie’s Bunny Crackers, to be precise. Basically goldfish crackers, but bunnyshaped and more expensive. Bought by parents who convince themselves that though their child is receiving only a negligible amount of nutrition, the word organic makes this more acceptable. In our house we can’t actually say “Bunny Crackers.” And we definitely can’t leave the box in sight. Granny started it. She came over one afternoon with a box sticking out of her bag. Angus was thrilled. “Book,” he said, trying to grab for the bright purple package. When he realized there were no pages to turn, he trundled away to find something more entertaining. He ate the crackers when offered them, which is not the case for most food. But he didn’t seem overly impressed. The first inkling of trouble came the day I packed a handful of them in his snack cup and took Angus to the Woodlands loop at the back of Government House. Angus tottered along feeling tree trunks, pushing through the tall grass at the edge of the trail, looking up in delight whenever a bird sang overhead. Halfway around we sat on a mossy rock and I pulled out the snack cup. Angus ate a few crackers, then picked up his cup and started off down the path. I was fine with this, but when he stuck his hand in to take another cracker, I made him sit to eat it and then, paranoid over a past Dreaded Cheerio Incident, I took the cup. Angus raced towards the stroller. He grunted and reached for the mesh pocket in the back, where the snack cup was clearly visible. I pushed the stroller a little faster than Angus could walk and we made some progress. I talked about being finished, having more later, and pointed out the squirrel on the ground ahead of us, the bright orange fungus by Angus’s feet. But these things were no longer interesting. Angus wanted his snack cup. I took it from the pocket and tucked it in my coat. Big mistake. Finally, we sat down and finished every last cracker. Okay, I thought, now we can walk. But Angus stood still, sticking his hand in his snack cup and pulling it out again. When he realized that no matter how many times he repeated this action there would be no more Bunny Crackers, he began to wail.


“All gone,” I said. I made the sign for finished. Angus’s volume increased as he threw himself on the ground. Ah, temper tantrums. They’re a relatively new thing, and Bunny Crackers come in

Maternity & Beyond Laura TRUNKEY handy when dealing with them. At home, when Angus is lying prone on the ground and smashing his little fists on the linoleum, it is useful to pull the wooden stool within reach, place some Bunny Crackers on the top, and say: Look, Bunny Crackers! Screams are instantly replaced by happy munching noises. The parent I was before I had a child would be appalled by this tactic. Using food as redirection! Couldn’t I sing a song, read a book, make a block castle in his vicinity? Yes, but sometimes these things don’t work, and sometimes I don’t have time for stories and block towers. Out comes the purple box. This strategy can’t be employed near mealtime because Bunny Crackers serve as a reminder of, well, Bunny Crackers. That whatever I serve Angus, there is something in the house infinitely more delicious. Angus seems to understand that I’m anxious about his food intake, or lack thereof. Also, he knows I keep the various courses of his meals just behind the kitchen pass-through. If he refuses the first course, I will present the second. If he refuses that, I’ll try the third. If he refuses everything, including the acceptable meal substitutes (yogurt, cheese, bananas, applesauce) I will eventually cave. I will give him Bunny Crackers, and he will eat. Sometimes I wonder what our life would be like without Bunny Crackers. But then I think about their saving graces, and I’m too afraid to find out. Laura Trunkey, mother of the amazing Angus, is a writer, and a children’s writing instructor at Story Studio. She can be reached at laurajtrunkey@gmail.com. January 2013  61

Open House January 23, 4–6pm

Accepting Enrollment Book now for a tour! 5575 West Saanich Rd (across from Red Barn Market) 250 592 4411  imhs@telus.net www.islandmontessori.com

preschool to grade 2

before and after school care

small class sizes

supportive and caring staff

excellent academic foundation

Kodaly music program

lovely rural location connecting children to nature

The World of Small


he young crouching giant peered down into the tops of the tiny trees below. Droplets of rainwater dripped from her head and on to some of the inhabitants, who were scurrying under pale green shrubs to avoid the giant’s eye. This was the young giant’s favourite time of year, when the rains brought glistening wonder to the forests beneath her feet. She gently touched a water droplet perching on some foliage, and watched it spread cool wetness on her hand. Waiting for her mother and father to join her, she

Photo: Rich Mably

South Park Family School

508 Douglas Street, Victoria, BC 250-382-5234 www.southparkfamilyschool.ca

We are accepting waitlist forms for Kindergarten to Gr. 5 for 2013 South Park Family School is a successful parent-involved alternative school in the Greater Victoria School District. Teachers and parents work closely together to provide a nurturing, stimulating learning environment. Because we emphasize cooperation over competition, we write narrative reports rather than assigning letter grades. Our fostering of self-esteem and creativity in our students prepares them to meet the challenges of future schooling. Please contact the school office for more information or check out our website www.southparkfamilyschool.ca

Ready Set Learn Open House on Wed. Jan 23, 2013, 1:30 – 2:30. For 3 – 5 year olds! Please RSVP. 62  Island Parent Magazine

was filled with excitement for the winter adventure ahead. If you wish to know what happens to our young giant on her explorations, head out to your favourite wooded park, and pay close attention to the world at your feet. You and your child are the giants, and the trees and shrubs beneath your feet are the smaller organisms that thrive in our mild West Coast winters. Don’t let the cold or rain stop you from going outside, for with the rains of winter, the mosses, lichens and mushrooms are having a party. These organisms become most spectacular in the rainy season. They soak up the water, they glisten in the sunlight, and they can take you into a world of delightful discoveries. Once you enter this world of small, you are greeted by enchantment around every corner. Witch’s butter fungus dots the logs, looking like shiny bright globs of orange jelly. Stair-step moss forms lovely green stairways alongside the trail, each annual shoot growing out of last year’s in a series of lacy steps. On the bark of the tree or growing on a rock, you may find a lichen called British soldiers, so named because their little red “caps” resemble the red hats worn by British troops who were stationed in the Americas. www.kidsinvictoria.com

Perhaps you may even be lucky enough to find a fairy garden on a large rock or inside an old stump. Here, dark green Juniper moss looks like what a giant might see when looking down on a forest. Peeking out among these tiny “trees” you may see Pixie cup lichen growing, and if you look very

Nature Notes deB thieSSeN closely, mosses may sport magic lanterns. These lanterns are actually spore capsules from various mosses, but to my eye and to the eye of a child, they are much more memorable as magic lanterns in the juniper moss “trees,” used for lighting the way for fairies as they roam the forest garden. What do you need to enjoy the delights of this world of small? Dress warmly, pack a lunch and hot chocolate if you like, bring along a magnifying glass, a map of the park you are visiting, and find a young companion or two to teach you how to see.

Photo: Deb Thiessen

Field guides for identifying flora are handy, but for the total immersion experience, let your imagination and your child’s curiosity be your guide. Make up names for tiny mushrooms growing on fir cones. Softly touch the droplets of moisture on moss, bark and lichen. Imagine what it would be like to be a small fairy or elf living in a forest fairy garden. Leave the warmth of your home behind for just an afternoon. In the forest, a magical adventure awaits you. Become a giant in the world of small, and be ready to be amazed. For upcoming naturalist-guided programs in CRD Regional Parks, such as Moss Landscapes of Vancouver Island, visit www.crd.bc.ca/parks/events/calendar.aspx. Deb Thiessen is a park interpreter with CRD Regional Parks. www.IslandParent.ca

Ad Directory 4Cats Arts Academy ... 43 Arbor Counselling ...... 31 Arbutus Music ........... 35 Art Gallery of Greater Victoria .................. 31 Artistic Statement ...... 41 Bellies In Bloom ........... 4 Big Brothers Big Sisters ....... 12, 35 Cadboro Bay Optometry .............. 41 Camp Qwanoes ......... 52 Capernwray ............... 64 Cathedral School........ 45 Children’s Bookshop... 61 Cinecenta .................. 55 Conseil Scolaire ........... 5 Cordova Bay Preschool............... 49 Discovery School........ 30 Eaton Arrowsmith School ..................... 1 EKE Martial Arts ......... 47 Evergreen School ....... 36 Family Literacy Day .... 42 Gonzales Preschool .... 55 Guitar in Motion ......... 49 Gulf Island Film .......... 20 Hampton Little League .................. 51 Happy Island Diapers.. 42 IMAX Theatre ............. 40 Island Farms .............. 32 Island Kids Academy .. 49 Island Montessori ....... 62 JamTots .................... 53 Kaleidoscope ............. 18 Karen Murdoch Theraputic Tutor ....... 8 Kate Rubin Theatre & Drama ................ 41 Keating Out of School Care ........... 38 KIV ............................ 11 LIFE Seminars............ 23 Lifestyle Markets........ 44 Lighthouse Academy of Dance ................ 41 Mad Science.............. 38 Maritime Museum ...... 44 Morning Glory School . 36 Mothering Touch .......... 9 North Island Distance Education............... 36

Oak & Orca Bioregional School ............. 40, 43 Oak Bay Preschool ..... 45 The OCEAN 98.5 ....... 15 Pacific Coast Swimming.............. 63 Pacific School of Innovation .............. 39 Pemberton Holmes ............ 45, 54 Rainbow Express........ 39 READ Society ............... 3 Restart Computers ..... 13 Royal BC Museum...... 16 Saanich Dental ............ 9 Saanich Recreation ... IFC Savvy Squirrel ............ 27 Scallywags ..........IFC, 37 School District #61 ................... 7, 57 School District #63 ................. 13, 47 Selkirk Montessori ..... 26 Serious Coffee ........... 56 South Park School...... 62 Sportball................... IFC St. Margaret’s School . 48 St. Michaels University School ................... 14 Stage Coach ................ 2 Stages................. 23, 27 Success by Six........... 25 Theatre One .............. 36 Thrifty Foods.............. 33 TJs the Kiddies Store . 53 Tom Lee Music .......... 62 UVic .......................... 52 Victoria Academy of Dramatic Arts ........ IBC Victoria Children’s Choir ..................... 55 Victoria Conservatory of Music ................ 17 Victoria Gymnastics ....BC Victoria Midwives ....... 24 Victoria Montessori Education............... 19 Victoria Recreation .... IBC Victoria Symphony ..... 34 VIHA.......................... 46 Vitamin Shop ............... 4 Viva Choirs .................. 7 Welcome Wagon ........ 22 Westside Stables ....... 22

Come Swim With Us!

Ongoing Registration Lightning Fast Swim Series, Levels 1–5:

Learn to swim faster than regular swim lessons and learn the techniques of competitive swimming right from the earliest levels. To register please contact: Commonwealth Place 250-727-5300 Gordon head 250-475-7100 uVic Vikes Rec vikesrec.uvic.ca oak Bay Recreation 250-595-7946 esquimalt, Panorama and Sooke call 250-727-9243

Congratulations to Pacific Coast Swimming’s very own Richard Weinberger and Coach Ron Jacks on winning bronze at the London Olympics!!!

www.pacificcoastswimming.com January 2013


Cut It Out!

Tips from Parent Educator Allison Rees of LIFE Seminars

The Parental Child


hildren have to be children. What does that really mean? They have to be free of taking on too much responsibility, especially responsibility that belongs to an adult. While it can look like a good thing when a boy is called “the man of the house,” it isn’t. When kids provide any adult-like support to a parent, it interferes with the child’s true needs. His needs are to be free, to play, to be a child and to be cared for. If you are giving your child too much responsibility, Cut It Out! Children who take on adult roles often act like a parent (“Don’t drink…Clean up after yourself…Don’t speak to her that way.”) Sometimes they are expected to look after the younger siblings even though the parents are home. Or they may know details of things that are worrying the parent, and be expected to listen, understand and help out.

At first it may look like a good thing to see a child being so thoughtful and responsible. But the parental child feels the burden and stress of being a parent because he hasn’t developed the maturity necessary to handle the job. He sacrifices his own childhood, and can never have it back. The child may rebel against this, or may become seriously

depressed as a result of having to act as an adult when he still needs to be a child. LIFE Seminars has two books available, Sidestepping the Power Struggle and The Parent Child Connection. See www. lifeseminars.com.

www . capernwray . ca

Training for Full Time Christian Service Regardless of Occupation! Leadership Through Servanthood by Christ’s Indwelling, Resurrection Life.


Practical Bible Teaching Genesis to Revelation: Christ Revealed in the Written Word.

ible Weeks B y l i m a F r fo Registratiionns Jan 15/13! Beg

• Bible School • Conferences • Outdoor Education • Private Retreats • Personal Getaways

64  Island Parent Magazine


Capernwray URL

We offer Classes, Audition Workshops, Spring Break & Summer Camps for kids ages 7-15. Please visit our website for contact information, registration and dates: www.vadarts.com info@vadarts.com 250.580.2588

City of Victoria Recreation Services This winter, check out the brand new weightroom equipment at Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre. Our personal trainers can help you get started. There’s still room in the following programs for Winter 2013. Register today!

• • • • • • • • • •

Baby Rock Tot Rock Zumbatomic Kids! Yoga Spin Class TC 10k Running Clinic Day trips Indoor Kayaking Private Swim Lessons Learn to Skate

Call 250.361.0732 to register. Visit www.victoria.ca for more programs and services.

ctoria Gymnastics

Why Victoria Gymnastics? Boys & girls, ages 2 through adult, beginner through advanced Morning, afternoon & evening classes seven days a week Start any time Optional character

Monthly payments with no further obligation—cancel any time Optional character

Trial classes available

Optional character

Make-ups for missed classes

Optional character Optional character


We guarantee your child will flip over our Birthday Parties! Benefits Victoria Gymnastics Will Provide for your Child: • Unlike other gymnastics clubs, our priority is ‘non-competitive’ gymnastics where all students are treated equally and fairly. Our objective is to provide students with a foundation of gymnastics that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. • Your child's progress is monitored daily, and every 3 months, each student is awarded a medal indicating his or her progress in our 14 level, 600 skill program. • Our ratio guarantee of a maximum of 8 students per instructor will provide your child with the Individualized attention he or she deserves. • We are a family oriented business. Classes are scheduled so that varying ages and genders can take part in different classes at the same time. • Clean. Very Clean. Our facilities are ozone treated. • Consistent, safe and experienced coaching in a well structured, safe and fun environment—all of our coaches have their NCCP certification and First Aid.



Celebrating 33 Years of Excellence!

Profile for Island Parent Group

January 2013 Island Parent  

Winter Programs

January 2013 Island Parent  

Winter Programs


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