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Vol. 4 • No. 1 • Jan/Feb 2 012


Back to School Special Giving Your Child Every Chance in Kindergarten Back to School for Parents Mindfulness for Managing Your Kids’ Stress The Transition to Year 7 From School to Higher Education Tips for School Leavers

An Interview with

January/February 2012 Subscription $6.60 AUD INC GST 01




i s o r o m A a s s Vane


4 Nov – 12 Feb $5 Adults, $3 Children/Concession, $15 Family Newcastle Museum, Workshop Way, Newcastle NSW

A captivating experience for all ages, Hatching the Past invites visitors to touch real dinosaur bones and reconstructed nests (one more than 2.5m in diameter), dig for eggs, experience hands-on exploration stations and view animated video presentations featuring well known dinosaur experts. Call 02 4974 1400 for more info. Image: Dennis Wilson, Oviraptor Embryo Model

Jan/Feb 2012


This Month’s





Editorial Your Letters


Giveaways LeapFrog Tag, Learn to Read Series & Interactive World Map


An Interview with Vanessa Amorosi Photos Courtesy Pierre Baroni Get Ahead Kids® © MAP Marketing 2012 Publisher MAP Marketing ABN 38 003 493 007 Villa Franca, 2 Scott St. Newcastle NSW 2300 P: 02 4929 7766 Managing Editor Maria Charlton MAP Marketing ABN 38 003 493 007 Villa Franca, 2 Scott St. Newcastle NSW 2300 P: 02 4929 7766 Graphic Design Katie Hurst MAP Marketing P: 02 4929 7766 Advertising Maria Charlton MAP Marketing ABN 38 003 493 007 Villa Franca, 2 Scott St. Newcastle NSW 2300 P: 02 4929 7766 Get Ahead Kids® is published by Marketing Advisers for Professionals Pty Ltd T/A MAP Marketing. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. The publisher does not accept responsibility for the opinions, errors or omissions.

Spotlight An Interview with Vanessa Amorosi Back to School


Giving Your Child Every Chance in Kindergarten


Back to School for Parents


Mindfulness for Managing Your Kids’ Stress


The Transition to Year 7


From School to Higher Education


Tips for School Leavers


School Leavers Still Unsure About Their Career Choice Finance


An Innovative System for Paying Pocket Money Health


Autism News


Newcastle Caravan, Camping & Holiday Expo


100% Kids Expo - 10 Family Passes to Giveaway! People in Focus


An Interview with Frances Watts Giveaways


Experience a Zoo With a Big Difference!


Unique Animal Encounters at Taronga Zoo


New LeapPad Explorer™




Advertisers Index


Activity Zone

to Subscribe ids dK Get Ahea azine ag Digital M scriber ub to enter S away e Only Giv ge 5 Details Pa


Editorial This edition’s celebrity spotlight Vanessa Amorosi provides an invaluable insight into the life of an international singersongwriter. She provides sound advice to aspiring stage performers. The Back to School issues offers unique well researched advice to all parents with kids up to 25 years whether they are just entering school, making the transition to year 7, going for tertiary education or entering the workforce. Medikidz provides informed advice on autism and how children with this condition can be helped. Checkout our great giveaways! These include 5 family passes to Taronga Zoo, I enjoyed reading the ‘Melanoma’ article and encourage all to read this valuable and possibly life saving information. This article was direct and thorough in providing information on Melanoma, what to look for during self examinations, prevention and treatment. This article is also a convenient reminder for busy people to have their skin checked and how to keep their families safe during the warmer weather. Please send letters and stories with your name and contact details to

N. Duncan, Newcastle NSW

Newcastle NSW 2300

With grandchildren, I found the article ‘Kids in Car Seats’ very interesting. My seats comply, but it was good having it confirmed in print.

F: 02 4929 7827

J. Clempson, West Wallsend NSW

Get Ahead Kids® Villa Franca, 2 Scott St.

5 family passes to the Reptile Park and a Leapfrog LeapPad with carry case! To encourage and reward our digital subscribers we are making available 2 prize packs from LeapFrog each consisting of a Tag Reading System, Tag Interactive World Map and Tag Learn to read series. On behalf of all of us at Get Ahead Kids I wish you the very best for the summer break and festive season! Maria Charlton Managing Editor P: 02 4929 7766 ‘Summer Feet - What Should Our Children Be Wearing’ is a great article. I loved the clarification that yes it is OK for our children to be barefoot - to experience the sand under their feet and enjoy the Australian summer. We have to be sensible but let our kids be kids. Thank you for the great advice!!! J. Robinson, Merewether NSW After reading ‘Learning at Home’, I was reminded about learning in a fun way e.g. through shopping! I get so caught up with getting through the spelling list, book reading, maths and other homework, I forget about getting creative which makes it much more interesting for a 6 year old! N. Passfield, Metford NSW


Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

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LeapFrog Tag, Learn to Read Series & Interactive World Map Kids can take a trip and bring the world to life with the LeapFrog Interactive Tag World Map. Use the Tag stylus with the map to hear about people, animals and discover new facts about familiar things as well as fun connections to new places. Double-sided, the Interactive World Map explores games on both sides. Learn to say it, spell it and sound it with Tag and the new Learn to Read series of books. Tag brings the books to life for fun learning with cute characters teaching reading and letter skills.

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With special thanks to LeapFrog, Get Ahead Kids® has 2 LeapFrog Packs valued at approx. $139.97 each to giveaway to GET AHEAD KIDS DIGITAL SUBSCRIBERS ONLY! Each pack consists of: 1x LeapFrog Tag Reading System, RRP $59.99 ea 1x Tag Interactive World Map, RRP $29.99 ea 1x Tag Learn to Read Series, RRP $49.99 ea Visit, follow the subscribe link and sign up to the free digital magazine (must be subscribed by 10 Feb 2012 to be eligible). Subscribers will receive a special link via email for entry to the giveaway.


Programmes For boys & girls of all ages & abilities. Junior Roo Soccer: 3-5 yrs Holiday Clinics: 5-14 yrs January 9-13 & 16-20, 9am-3pm After School Sessions: 5-14 yrs

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thinking ahead Hunter TAFE offers a wide range of courses across all industry areas. • at School? Study TAFE programs while still at school. • F iniShed School? A TAFE program to assist you re-enter the workforce or kick start your new career.

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i s o r i o v r m e t n A I a An s s e n a V ith w ew

What do you find most exciting about performing live? I love performing live. It’s my favourite part of my job. Seeing people from the stage singing my songs back to me is a beautiful thing. Seeing my fans so happy while watching the show is the best feeling. It’s when I strike a connection with the audience that it makes it all worthwhile. What has been your career highlight so far and why? My career highlights so far include having a Number 1 single and a Number 1 album. These were pretty amazing! When did you first get involved in performing? I first got involved with performing when I was 12 years old and I got signed to a record deal at 14. Who encouraged you to pursue singing as a career? I guess my whole family did. Both my parents were in bands, my whole family are musical, so it just happened. We would all play music together at home. So when I started playing live, everyone was very supportive. What are some of your future goals? Just to keep going - writing and releasing music for my fans. I would really like to start working on the production side of things. I have set up my own home studio and am now able to record in my very own space. It’s quite exciting.


Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Spotlight What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

What is your top tip for aspiring singers/songwriters?

Because I am always on the road touring, doing promos, or in the studio, my favourite thing is to be at home. I love hanging out with my animals. Taking my dogs for walks and riding my horses.

Just keep writing. Don’t give up. It’s hard, but you have to stick at it. Don’t let the small things get you down.

What is your favourite holiday destination and why? I love being at home in Melbourne. I am always travelling around the world, writing and recording so when I can I love holiday at home on our farm. It’s relaxing. I can lose myself in so many different fun things. Like playing on tractors and riding horses. I am a kid at heart so I love to get out there and get my hands a little dirty. What is your most unforgettable personal experience? I would have to say performing at the Sydney Olympics. That is something that is just unforgettable. The whole event was so grand and to be part of it was a real honour.

Biography Singer-songwriter Vanessa Amorosi was born 8 August 1981 in Melbourne, Australia. When she was four she attended tap, jazz and classical ballet classes. She was discovered performing in a Russian restaurant by TV producer Jack Strom. In 1998, the 15 year old Vanessa achieved success when her debut single “Have a Look” went Gold after only seven weeks in the ARIA charts. This achievement was followed by mega-hits in Australia and Europe with “Absolutely Everybody” and “Shine” and her album “The Power” reached Number 1 in Australia.

How do you cope with the media attention and being in the public eye?

Vanessa is one of Australia’s most talented rock, pop and acoustic stars. She has sold over 1.5 million records worldwide and received a vast collection of awards both within Australia and overseas.

Because I have been in the public eye/media for so long it just feels like it is part of my job. I avoid listening to anything negative or taking it to heart. I just do my thing.

Her career highlights include performing at the Sydney 2000 Olympics and the Manchester Commonwealth Games, to touring Europe with Joe Cocker.


As she moved out of her teens, Vanessa’s musical tastes became heavier and more soulful, finding inspiration from 70’s rock legends such as Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix. “I never had vocal training but my mother was the best tutor I ever had,” Vanessa says. “She used to sing in a rock band herself. She’d always tell me: “Put a bit of edge on those words, get across to the audience that those words mean a lot to you.”

NEW Album ‘V’! New album ‘V’ has been proclaimed as a shining light from an international artist. Lyrically she’s gone further than ever before. This album speaks one-to-one with the listener and its empowering message is catching. It was recorded across the globe, first on her portable studio while on the road, with internationally renowned producers John Fields, Jimmy Harry and Macho. It reflects Vanessa’s diversity with eclectic sounds extending from trance, hip-hop, Primus, Tool to Mr Bungle.

More Information


11am - 1pm WEDNESDAY 25



LIMITED PLACES ARE AVAILABLE Newcastle Grammar School p: (02) 4929 5811



Back to School

Giving Your Child Every Chance in


As parents, we all want our children to be happy at school. For the first few weeks, our little ones are “settling in” to their new environment, which includes making friends with children they have never met before, getting to know their teacher, remembering the many “rules” that schools have, both in the classroom and the playground and adjusting to spending a full day at school every day. Most children adjust well to their new environment, but there will be some who may be left “floundering” for no apparent reason. In addition to adjusting to the social environment, they also have to adjust to a new learning environment.


Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

By Dr. Joan Brien

As we all know, children learn at different rates and in different ways, and the teaching method used by the teacher may influence their learning.

Another very important problem that could cause your child to have difficulties with learning is Irlen Syndrome, which is a visual processing problem.

Other factors that can influence their learning include whether they can see the board clearly and/or whether they can hear the teacher’s instructions clearly.

People with this problem are sensitive to white light, and are unable to process the whole spectrum of visible light. This makes it hard for them to read or write on white paper, and to copy from whiteboards and/or Smart Boards.

In order to eliminate these two factors as possible deterrents to learning, it is wise to have your children’s vision and hearing assessed before they begin school. Children who do have a vision problem or a hearing problem will not necessarily let you know: because they do not know they have a problem! They don’t know that they see or hear things differently from other children, so it is best not to rely on self-reporting for these important functions.

In some ways, this can be a bigger problem than vision or hearing problems, because Irlen Syndrome cannot be diagnosed by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. They can have perfect vision, yet still cannot see words clearly on a white background. Again, they will not self-report because they do not know that everyone does not see things as they do. They usually struggle on, but often cannot achieve the level of success that should come with their efforts.

Back to School Irlen Syndrome can cause distortions of print, including movement, blurriness or fading of words or letters, and words merging together or stretching away from each other. Often, parents will tell me that their child did report these distortions, but because they had been checked and found to have perfect vision, they did not really see how this could be happening. Below is a list of things to look for in preschoolers or kindergarten children who are not necessarily reading at that level.

❑❑ Excessive squinting or blinking when doing schoolwork in bright light - see if this is less in a “duller” environment ❑❑ Distortions of print, including blurriness, movement or fading of words or letters ❑❑ Words merging together or stretching away from each other

More Information

Irlen Syndrome can cause visual processing problems that can cause Dyslexia and difficulties with: • Concentration • Reading • Spelling • Writing • Comprehension

Visual Processing Checklist ❑❑ Reluctance to look at words on a white background but no problem looking at words on a coloured background or picture

Is Your Child Struggling with Learning?

Irlen Diagnostic Clinic Suite 3/136 Nelson St Wallsend NSW 2287 P: 02 4955 6904 |

Dr. Joan Brien Irlen Diagnostic Clinic Suite 3/136 Nelson St. Wallsend NSW 2287 P: 02 4955 6904

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© Australian Broadcasting Corporation, licensed in association with Southern Star Entertainment 2012. Original song by Carey Blyton


JUSTICE LEAGUE and all related characters and elements are trademarks of and © DC Comics. (s12)


Back to School

Back to School for Parents By Amanda Tocci You’ve polished the shoes, the uniforms are ironed, the pencils are sharpened and you’ve breathed a sigh of relief…yes it’s back to school. Those three words ‘back to school’ are filled with excitement, apprehension and relief not only for the children but for the parents. For many parents ‘back to school’ can be a here we go again feeling, where they feel as though their voice is not heard, where their child seems to continuously struggle, where promises are made and this time next year they are saying once again, “here we go again.” But it does not have to be that way.

10 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Back to school can be an enriching, empowering experience for parents where you are the advocate for your child because no one loves or knows your child better than you. However you need to listen to those in the system, those with the education and experience to assist your child with right practices. But when right practices and common sense do not seem to prevail then you must act for your child. No system is perfect. Perfection in education is a fallacy when so many variables exist. I am confident that every parent, especially mothers reading this will understand the strength of a mother’s intuition or gut instinct. Yes, even mothers who are teachers have them.

Back to School About Amanda Tocci

Just like a new year’s resolution, parents need to set new year‘s school resolutions to: 1. Listen to your child 2. Listen to the teacher 3. Listen to yourself 4. Act on behalf of your child with the support of the teacher If you see any of the following in your child you may need further support from a psychologist or paediatrician. ❑❑ Has your child’s behaviour changed? ❑❑ Is there negative self-talk? ❑❑ Is your child refusing to go to school? ❑❑ Is your child faking sickness? ❑❑ Is there fighting & tears at homework time? ❑❑ Has the child’s appetite changed?

Amanda Tocci is a Literacy Specialist and Managing Director of the Australian Literacy Clinic Pty Ltd. Amanda is currently undertaking her PhD in Psychology at Newcastle University, investigating appropriate strategy instruction for children with working memory and reading disabilities. The Australian Literacy Clinic Pty Ltd is a specialist centre located in Maitland and Newcastle, working with families and schools in assessment, planning and intervention for children with reading difficulties If you would like a Reading Checklist then please visit If you would like to post a comment then please do so at

Australian Literacy Clinic Pty Ltd Assessment, Planning & Intervention for Children with Reading Difficulties. Specialist Clinics Located in Maitland & Newcastle

P: 1300 869 905 ACN: 147 916 676

More Information


Good luck parents, remember to breathe, yes, it’s back to school! Here we go again!


Amanda Tocci Managing Director & Literacy Specialist Australian Literacy Clinic Pty Ltd. P: 1300 869 905

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Has your child experienced the KU difference? KU is Australia’s leading provider of community-based, not for profit early childhood education and care. With over 100 years experience in the Hunter region, we are committed to providing high quality, affordable preschool and long day care. Visit to find your nearest centre, and experience the KU difference for yourself! KU is proudly a not for profit organisation


Back to School


for Managing Your Kids’ Stress By Kara Matheson

Children’s lives are increasingly stressful. Many children feel stressed from living in our fast-paced, mediasaturated, multi-tasking world, and many are stressed about performing and succeeding. An alarming number of children are being diagnosed with ADHD, depression, anxiety, eating disorders and other self-destructive behaviours. Mindfulness teaches children and teens skills to manage the stresses of modern life, and scientific research is showing that it works. In a randomised controlled trial conducted by Maria Napoli, Ph.D., 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders participated in a bi-weekly, 12 session program of mindfulness and relaxation. The children showed significant increases in attention and social skills, decreases in test anxiety and ADHD behaviours at the end of the course, and in repeated measurements three months after their training. A study conducted by Amy Saltzman, M.D., in collaboration with the Department of Psychology at Stanford University, with 4th - 7th graders and their parents, showed that after one hour of mindfulness training for eight consecutive weeks, the children demonstrated increased ability to reorient their attention to learning and had decreased anxiety.

12 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

In research on teaching mindfulness to adolescents conducted by Gina Biegel M.A., MFT, teens reported reduced symptoms of anxiety, depression, and somatic (physical) distress, and increased self-esteem and sleep quality. Independent clinicians documented greater improvement in the mindfulness group versus the control group. When children and teens learn mindfulness they: 1. Practice bringing their attention to their present moment experience 2. Exercise the ‘muscle of their attention’ 3. Learn to do so with compassion Learning mindfulness in a group with their peers, they discover that they are not alone in their struggles, and have the opportunity to connect with others honestly and authentically in a safe space. One activity which is used to practice mindfulness is mindful eating. Every step of eating slows down so that it can be noticed: the thoughts that are present before the food is eaten, the appearance of the food, the smell of the food, the feel of the food in the mouth, as it is bitten, and as it is swallowed. Participants discover how much they notice when they slow down enough to observe the details of their experience, and can begin to see how much of their experience they are missing.

For parents, mindfulness awareness can help you tune into your kids’ needs and feelings in a way that’s healthy for both of you. Mindfulness training has numerous benefits for parents including: ❑❑ Improved attention ❑❑ Heightened empathy ❑❑ Less anxiety & depression ❑❑ Better communication with kids ❑❑ Increased ability to handle stress ❑❑ Increased benefits in the health & functioning of the brain Teaching mindfulness to kids and teens has been described by Amy Saltzman M.D. as “the truest form of preventive medicine I know.”

About Kara Matheson

Kara Matheson is an experienced teacher, having taught for over 15 years, in high schools and at TAFE. Kara is a trained teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) for adults and children, and currently offers face-to-face and online courses in mindfulness for parents, kids, and teens.

More Information

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Have a close encounter with some of the park’s scaly and furry animals during Snappy Hour 11am-2pm daily, including a walk with Hugo the giant Galapagos tortoise. Elvis, NSW’s biggest crocodile, is fed at 1:30pm on weekends and school holidays. Watch the spectacular alligator feeding from the banks of the massive ’gator lagoon. See native and exotic reptiles and spiders in unique exhibits. You can also take in the Lost World of Reptiles and Spider World, featuring Tarantula-ville. Discover how the park helps save the iconic Tasmanian devil with our exciting conservation project, Devil Ark.

Witness a venomous snake and funnel web spider milking every day. Have a photo with a snugly python, wombat or cuddly koala. Ask about the Behind the Scenes tours, Devilish Encounter, Kids to Keepers program, Fear Factor and Hugo’s Birthday Party Pack! Fear is real and living with a phobia can have an enormous effect on your life. There are many people living with phobias and many different types of phobias. It’s no joke, it’s no fun, and it’s not something you should be embarrassed by or afraid of dealing with.

Each pass allows a family of 2 adults and 2 children (3 - 15 years) a wildlife experience at the Australian Reptile Park. Visit and click the giveaways link for a chance to win one of these fantastic Australian Reptile Park family pass giveaways.

Enjoy the children’s adventure playground, cafe and picnic area, free BBQs and hand feed friendly kangaroos.

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The Australian Reptile Park is the hands-on zoo and boasts many animal interactions and exciting wildlife shows.

With special thanks to the Australian Reptile Park, Get Ahead Kids® has 5 Family Passes valued at approx. $64.00 each to giveaway!


Back to School

The Transition

to Year 7

As adults who have survived high school, we may look back on our time with many different emotions. Many will speak joyfully of the great experiences, the friendships, the accomplishments and challenges that occurred during those years. However it is often with a deal of anxiousness that we recall the change from primary school to high school. It is true that most students moving into high school look forward to these changes; new teachers, new friends, following a timetable and moving from room

14 Get Ahead KidsÂŽ Jan/Feb 12

to room throughout the day what an adventure. However for some, this significant change is highly stressful. This is when it becomes so important to ensure that a student’s transition is wellsupported by both their school and parents. Generally speaking, we all tend to feel uncomfortable when we experience or predict events that feel out of our control. Therefore the aim of transition programs should be to ensure that those uncertainties are minimised, while

By Trevor Norman

ensuring that the student is helped to feel like they are back in control. This can occur through providing both knowledge and support. Students should be given the opportunity to visit and spend time in the school that they will be attending prior to commencing. In doing so, they gain knowledge, learn about the routines of the day, where classrooms and teachers can be found and they learn about what will be expected of them when they enter that environment full time.

Back to School

This sense of knowledge empowers students, as high school is no longer a complete mystery, but instead can be understood and planned for; this in turn provides them with a renewed sense of control. Parents should take any opportunity that is available for their child to experience high school during the year leading up to them starting high school. A school visit, a day of lessons, perhaps specific transition activities will be provided by the school. All of these are opportunities for a young person to gain knowledge. Students should also be given every support they need to assert their own control over the start to high school. This should not be confused with providing everything a student needs at every moment, it is still vitally important that high school students develop responsibility. However this process of maturing and development of responsibility should be supported so that students feel safe and secure, knowing that whatever challenge or difficulty arises, there is someone who will support them at that time.

Your child’s school may have a welldeveloped pastoral structure where every student has a staff member who will mentor them throughout high school. Students know that they will receive the support they need and feel confident to learn in a supported and safe environment. Parents need to be involved in their child’s schooling through regular communication with this key person, so that the mentor and parents can work closely to ensure that the young person is well cared for.

Indoor & Outdoor Activities Experienced & Qualified Staff Childcare Benefit Available Accreditied with NCAC



The transition to high school is both exciting and challenging; however with the right knowledge and support, this experience will be a fantastic start to a young person’s high school education.




the hUnter’s hoMe oF FaMIlY entertaInMent

Further Reading

More Information Trevor Norman Head of Middle School Hunter Valley Grammar School P: 02 4934 2444

Charlestown sQUare

49/30 Pearson st Ph: 02 4032 1150

2013 ScholarShipS

applications close January 27, 2012 acaDEMic ScholarShipS YEar 5-11 MUSic ScholarShipS YEar 5-11 Visit to apply and for further information. NORFOLK ST ASHTONFIELD 2323 p 4934 2444


From School to

Higher Education Making the transition to higher education whether it is distance learning, University or TAFE is a big change from school for both parents and students. It can be exhilarating, overwhelming and stressful as young adults adjust to new surroundings, new systems and new people. Loneliness and confusion may be common emotions as young adults adjust to the anonymity of larger classes and more freedom to make choices. They are now free to set their own boundaries instead of relying on those set by teachers. ACER conducted the survey of first year students, Australasian Survey of Student Engagement (AUSSE) 2010 that involved about 55,000 students from 55 Australian tertiary institutions.

16 Get Ahead KidsÂŽ Jan/Feb 12

Back to School Tips for Making the Transition

This survey indicated that the number of students seriously thinking about abandoning their studies has declined from 35% in 2008 and 30% in 2009 to 27% in 2010.

❑❑ Join clubs & hobby groups ❑❑ Form a study group ❑❑ Investigate peer mentoring ❑❑ Participate in tutorials

Stated reasons for first year students leaving university include:

❑❑ Join gyms & sporting teams

• Boredom 23%

❑❑ Hang out in student recreational centres

• Personal or social rather than practical reasons 19%

❑❑ Consult career & personal mentors

• Study-life balance 18% • Workload difficulty 17%

❑❑ Ask other students, teachers or lecturers for help

• Health or stress 16%

❑❑ Manage stress & learn to relax

• Financial reasons 14%

❑❑ Talk to someone if you cannot cope

• Institutional factors such as reputation, quality & support 7%

NEGS is offering SCHOLARSHIPS in ACADEMIC, EQUESTRIAN AND MUSIC for those entering Years 6 to 11 in 2013. Academic examination: Saturday 3rd March 2012. Applications close: Thursday 20th February 2012. Applications available on-line: Thursday 1st December 2011


More Information

As young adults make the transition to new peer groups, they may need to be proactive in overcoming the loneliness of larger educational facilities



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Back to School

Tips for

School Leavers

❑❑ Life is not fair - get used to it! ❑❑ The world won’t care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself. ❑❑ You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won’t be a vice-president with a car, until you earn it. ❑❑ If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. ❑❑ Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger flipping - they called it opportunity. ❑❑ If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault, so don’t whine about your mistakes, learn from them. ❑❑ Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rainforest from the parasites of your parent’s generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

18 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

❑❑ Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they’ll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life. ❑❑ Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time. ❑❑ Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs. ❑❑ Be nice to nerds. Chances are you’ll end up working for one. ❑❑ Smoking does not make you look cool. It makes you look moronic. Next time you’re out cruising, watch an 11 year old with a butt in his mouth. That’s what you look like to anyone over 20. Ditto for “expressing yourself” with purple hair and/or pierced body parts.

❑❑ You are not immortal. If you are under the impression that living fast, dying young and leaving a beautiful corpse is romantic, you obviously haven’t seen one of your peers at room temperature lately. ❑❑ Enjoy this while you can. Sure parents are a pain, school’s a bother, and life is depressing. But someday you’ll realize how wonderful it was to be a kid. Maybe you should start now. You’re welcome.

More Information These rules are commonly attributed to Bill Gates however, he neither spoke nor wrote the words. These come from Author Charles J. Sykes.

50 Rules Kids Won’t Learn in School: Real-World Antidotes to Feel-Good Education Author: Charles J. Sykes Age Guide: 15+ Years Extent: 177 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780312360382 Price: AU $21.99 Publisher: St. Martin’s Press P: 03 9825 100

Back to School

School Leavers Still Unsure About Their

Career Choice

Early childhood is a time of great discovery. Our dedicated, professional staff provides a caring and creative place for children to express their ideas, imagine and experiment while learning.

A study conducted on 1500 Martin College key survey findings: Bateau Bay Phone (02) 4334 4314 participants has revealed the majority Mount Hutton Phone (02) 4948 8046 • 68% of school leavers are still unsure Beresfield Phone (02) 4966 1262 (68%) of school leavers are undecided of their career path & 8% have Stockton Phone (02) 4920 1277 on their career path. absolutely no idea what they want Cooranbong Phone (02) 4977 1720 The survey conducted by Martin to do Tanilba Bay Phone (02) 4982 4995 College, an Australian provider of • Healthcare, medical, IT & graphic Kurri Kurri Phone (02) 4936 4486 careers-focused education, has also design are the major areas of Tumbi Umbi Phone (02) 4388 9822 revealed that 8% have absolutely no interest Mannering Park Phone (02) 4359 1220 idea what they want to do. • Sales & secretarial are the least Woodbury Park Phone (02) 4351 1404 popular career fields For Brisbane school leavers about Now taking enrolments • Major sources of career advice 36% know the exact career path they proudly owned and operated by are parents (49%) career guidance want to take, 30% of Sydney schools counsellors (20%) & teachers (10%) leavers and 28% of Melbourne school • About 96% of Australian parents leavers. think it’s important for their children When asked which industry they 16554 MA ELS GAK ad.indd 1 23/08/11 to have a successful career wanted to go into healthcare and • Approximately 87% of Australian medical were voted number one, with parents want their children to IT second and graphic design third. acquire further study qualifications after school About half (49%) of school leavers • About 36% Brisbane, 30% Sydney & rely on advice from their parents and 28% Melbourne school leavers know 87% of parents surveyed stated they what career they want to pursue want their children to acquire further qualifications upon leaving school.

2:51 PM

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For students that do not make the with HSC results, colleges leavers-career-choices.aspx including Martin College and Tocal Agricultural College offer direct routes to job readiness or an alternative pathway to university.

Our Graduates Get Great Jobs Journalism Business Bachelor of Arts Accounting Advertising Real Estate

Hospitality Event Management Public Relations • Marketing Sports Management Tourism Management

For over 20 years our graduates have built great careers in these industries For 2012 enrolment information, please call Simon Dowling (02) 9367 3311 Level 1, 175 Liverpool St, Sydney NSW 2000 E: |




An innovative System for Paying

Pocket Money Mark Bouris advocates paying pocket money by asking your kids to submit a list of expenses - a budget as a basis for receiving pocket money. This budget may include school lunches, bus, mobile phone recharge, clothes money, weekend hobby and sports money. When kids submit a budget, parents need to review each submission and when there is an agreement the money be directly transferred into each child’s bank account each Friday and available for use on Monday.

20 Get Ahead KidsÂŽ Jan/Feb 12

Mark noted that the benefits to kids include: 1. Focus on what money they need & how to justify it 2. Disciples kids to align spending with their pocket money 3. Appreciate that money is a useful & valuable asset 4. Become aware on where money comes from & how money is spent 5. Learn how the banking system works 6. Recognise the importance of saving 7. Understand the affect of inflation on spending 8. Become more responsible with money


❑❑ Pocket money should be a privilege, not a right ❑❑ Decide if pocket money should be awarded for chores that ought to be expected of them e.g. making their bed & cleaning up after themselves ❑❑ Make a pocket money plan & stick to it! This helps children to get into a routine; they will know how often to expect their pocket money & how much they will be receiving ❑❑ Randomly & freely handing over money to children can result in them expecting money whenever they want it or ask for it ❑❑ Encourage children to write down all their weekly expenses e.g. bus fares and lunch money. This will help them to compare the value of money in different situations & for you both to discuss & evaluate an appropriate amount of pocket money

❑❑ By creating an expenses list your child will realise that by cutting back expenditures they can create a surplus of money to spend on something special like a new toy or book ❑❑ Remind your children that it is not realistic for a budget to be adhered to all the time; necessary one off expenses will teach your children that it is important to have some money saved to help cover such costs ❑❑ Usually, a child’s attitude toward money originates from the adults in the house; if parents frivolously spend money on material items & do not aim to save a portion of their income, this attitude is likely to be instilled upon the children

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Starz on Stage Talent Academy offers: Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Modern, Singing, Drama, Musical Theatre, Tumbling & Acrobats for 2+ yrs Studios: East Maitland & Weston P: 4964 4377|

The world’s most loved preschool soccer program for BOYS & GIRLS aged 18 mths - 5th Birthday Little Kickers Newcastle

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Performing Arts & Holiday Activities

• Ballet

• Tap

• Jazz

• Hip Hop

• Modern

• Breakdance

Classes for 3yrs to Pre Professional Directors: Karen-Ann Thomas & Jenny Langford Lvl 1, Melvic Centre, Thomas St Belmont NSW 2280 P: 4945 8788 |

He informs us that for wealth creation you need to invest in property, superannuation and a portfolio of shares. Mark also weaves in invaluable advice about health, family life and financial planning.

The Yellow Brick Road to Your Financial Security Author: Mark Bouris Mark Bouris has written a book that is easy to read and in simple language on his approach to investing for wealth, security and retirement.

For parents, Mark offers an invaluable guide for raising healthy and happy children. He also provides useful advice for making kids financially accountable and responsible. Age Guide: Adults Extent: 256 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781741754216 Price: AU$26.95 Publisher: Allen & Unwin P: 02 8425 0100

Australian Dance & Talent Centre 4954 9477 | 16 Torrens Ave, Cardiff 2285

Fun & Creative Yoga for kids 2½ - 12! Call Nicole 418 435 955

YogaBugs Newcastle YogaBugs & Yoga’d Up Classes, School / Preschool Programs & Birthday Parties available.

Casual classes for adults & kids No Commitment | No Concerts Just Fun, Dance & Fitness ZUMBA | ZUMBA Toning | Hip Hop Ballet | Burlesque | Body & Soul Lyrical | JFH (Jazz/Funk/Hip Hop) Dance Aerobics Kids Hip Hop, JFH, Drama & Singing Contact us for School Activities




By Dr. Columba Quigley Columba

Autism is about seeing the world in a different way. Although we are unsure what actually causes autism, it probably starts before children are born. Autism affects the brain so that it develops differently to the normal brain. When you have autism, the messages that the brain normally sends to make sense of the world are different. Because of this, children with autism see the world in their own unique way. That is really what autism is about, about seeing the world in a way that is different to most other children. What happens if you have autism? Autism usually affects children in three ways: • Understanding others • Talking to others • Making friends When you have autism, you not only see the world differently, but you understand it differently too. Autism can make it especially hard to understand how to deal with people around you. Because of this you may find it easier to be on your own and to stay in your own world. Autism can also affect how you talk. You might not talk at all, or repeat words you hear other people say. How do you know if someone has autism? You cannot tell that someone has autism just by looking at them.

22 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Children with autism look like other children. Because of this, it can sometimes take a while for it to be diagnosed.

There is no cure as yet, but when people around you spend time trying to understand what the world looks like to you, this can really help.

Sometimes adults think a child is just being naughty when in fact they have autism.

Autism is called a spectrum disorder because it affects everyone differently. It can affect some children just a little and other children more, so that they may need to go to a special school.

The clues to diagnosing autism come from observing how you behave. At school, the teachers might notice that you find it hard to make friends and that you are often on your own. Or they might notice that you find it hard to concentrate, or that they are being picked on because you seem different to them.

If you have autism you can be happy or sad just like other children. You just have difficulty understanding other people’s body language and facial expressions. This can make it hard to know how other people are feeling.

Sometimes children with autism might make unusual movements. You might find it hard to make eye contact, or you might stare a lot.

There are teams of specialists, nurses, doctors, teachers, social skills trainers and speech and language therapists, all of whom can help you cope with your autism better.

If you have autism, routine can very comforting and you like to do the same thing, every day, often at the same time. Any interruptions or change to your routine upsets you. Often, you are fascinated by one particular thing and study it for long periods.

Because you understand the world differently to other children, it can seem a scary place. The team of specialists are there to help you understand the world and people around you, and to make it feel safer.

What causes autism? Autism is common and affects around one in 100 children. We do not know yet what causes it, although it may be genetic, or it may be something in the environment. One thing we know for sure is that nobody is to blame. Can autism be treated? A specialist can confirm whether or not you have the diagnosis.

Remember! ❑❑ Children with autism have strengths and weaknesses like everyone else ❑❑ Because they see things differently they often have very special talents Important! ❑❑ Encourage children with autism with what they are good at ❑❑ Help them with what they are not so good at


About Dr. Columba Quigley

References & Further Reading

Dr. Columba Quigley is a member of the medical writing team at Medikidz, a charity that provides children and teenagers with informative, accessible and fun comic books to help them understand their bodies and illness. pubmedhealth/PMH0002494/ problems/brain/autism.html


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Providing specialist dental care for infants, children, adolescents & those with specialist needs. Teen dental is also available.

What’s Up With Ben? Medikidz Explain Autism

Dr. Helen Cornwell Paediatric Dentist

Authors: Dr. Kim Chilman-Blair & Shawn Deloache Illustrator: Liquid Comics

40 Brown Rd Broadmeadow NSW 2292

P: 4962 7300

Ben prefers to sit by himself in his own world rather than socialise. He finds it difficult to talk to people, even his sister Brooke. Luckily, the Medikidz superheroes are on their way to explain Autism to Brooke and help her to understand what’s up with her brother. Brooke and Ben are whisked off to Mediland for a tour inside the brain. They learn that Autism is something that affects the brain. The brain is made from brain cells (neurons) that control everything a person does. For Ben the messages that help him make sense of the world are different. The parts of the brain that deals with talking, making friends and understanding are affected the most. As children will be going back to school, this presents an excellent opportunity for parents and school teachers to become aware of

some of the educational options for children with Autism. The cartoon superheroes suggest that social skills, music therapy, and speech therapy may be some alternatives. This book is highly readable, entertaining and most of all informative. An essential reference for schools, parents and health care providers. Age Guide: 8+ Years Extent: 32 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781906935283 Price: AU $14.99 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers P: 1300 551 721



Newcastle Caravan, Camping & Holiday Expo

The Newcastle Caravan, Camping and Holiday Expo will be held at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre and Showground. The expo will feature a wide range of caravan and camping products, caravans and motorhomes and a variety of dining and entertainment experiences. About 25,000 people are expected to attend over the three days to see over 200 exhibitors displaying the latest makes and models of caravans, motorhomes, campervans, camper trailers,

24 Get Ahead Kids速 Jan/Feb 12

5th wheelers, slide-ons, tents and camping equipment, caravan and 4WD accessories, holiday park displays, tourism destinations and much more. 2012 is tipped to be a strong year for caravan, camping and other Recreational Vehicles (RV) as more Australians seek value for money holidays. For those new to the market or those wanting to add to their gear, the Newcastle Expo is the ideal event to catch great bargains on everything caravan and camping!

Details Parking: Free Hours: 9am-5pm daily (Closes 4pm Sunday) Dates: 17-19 February 2012 Admission Costs: $10 (Adults), $6 (Pensioners/Senior Card Holders) Children under the age of 16 are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

More Information Allison Moller P: 02 9615 9960

10 to G P iveasses aw Va l u ed ay! $2 0.0

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Kids Expo

The inaugural 100% Kids Expo 2012 will be held on Sunday, April 22nd, at the Newcastle Jockey Club, Darling Street Broadmeadow.

With special thanks to the 100% Kids Expo, Get Ahead Kids® has 10 Family Passes valued at approx. $20.00 each to giveaway!

It is set to become the premier event of the “KID” genre in the Newcastle, Central Coast and Hunter regions.

Each pass allows a family of 2 adults and 2 children entry to the 100% Kids Expo 2012.

The Expo will bring with it a wide range of new products, services, information and entertainment.

Visit and click the giveaways link for a chance to win one of these fantastic family pass giveaways.

100% Kids Expo is committed to delivering first class, high quality, informative exhibitors providing the best advice from industry leaders, the latest innovations and essential pregnancy, parenting products and a full entertainment program for the young, and young at heart. Visitors, their families and children will have the opportunity to review, test and purchase the latest equipment, gain advice on fashion, education, fitness and holiday ideas along with the latest range of car safety equipment.

Ticket Information Children Under 3: Free Children 3 - 16: $5 General Admission: $10 Family #1: 2 adults & 2 children $20 Family #2: 2 adults & 3 children $25

More Information Louise Kipa Eclipse Media, Events & PR P: 02 49613200


People in Focus

An Interview with

Frances Watts How old were you when you started writing and what inspired you to write? Being an avid reader inspired me to write; I’ve always loved language and stories, and I have been writing stories from around the time I learned to read. That’s not to say that I always knew I wanted to be a writer…Before I was a published writer I was (and still am) an editor. I’ve just always wanted to work with books. What was the first book that you had published? My first book was a picture book called ‘Kisses for Daddy’ (illustrated by David Legge). The idea came as a bit of a ‘light bulb’ moment when I was walking down the street and witnessed a funny and affectionate moment between a father and son. That sparked off memories about games I used to play with my dad when I was very young, and before I knew it I was writing a story about a grumbly baby bear who doesn’t want to kiss his dad goodnight. What is different about writing for young adults? I have written quite a few picture books now - and I would love to keep on writing picture books - but I found that the more I wrote, the more ideas I had, and those ideas kept getting bigger, until I was writing for much older kids. The writing process is definitely different: where the art of picture books lies in being able to distil stories, writing for older age groups is about extending stories. The plots are more intricate, the ideas and language and humour are more sophisticated, there is room to develop characters more fully.

26 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

For me it has meant really thinking about what I love to find in books as a reader, and then focusing on those elements in my own writing. Where did you get your idea for the Gerander Trilogy and its characters? One evening I was watching a news story about a country attacking a less powerful one and I started wondering how kids would understand an event like this. When I was a kid I used to read a lot of books set during wartime. Of course the settings made them dramatic and compelling, but they were very character-driven too - and the questions they posed, the demands they made of their characters, had an urgency and immediacy that spoke to me then and still speaks to me today; questions about justice and integrity and personal responsibility. While these issues are very much part of the Gerander Trilogy, I didn’t want them to overwhelm the stories. More than anything, I wanted to write page-turning adventure stories, fastpaced and full of intrigue, funny and moving, with characters that readers will care about. The characters just happen to be mice! I wanted to be able to incorporate ideas about war and injustice in a non-confronting way; using mice gives the reader a bit of distance, while I could still make them human enough for readers to be able to engage with them. For what age group do you write and why? I write for ages 0 - 12. One of the reasons I like writing for kids stems from the fact that my own love of reading derives from the books I read

when I was young. I would be very happy if my books inspired a love of reading in kids. I find that writing for younger age groups is very liberating: there’s room for the kind of humour and quirkiness and imagination that feels very natural to me. How do you overcome a writer’s block? Long walks! I find I do my best problem-solving away from the desk. But if I’m really struggling, it helps to put the manuscript away for a while too, so I can come back to it with fresh eyes. Sometimes writer’s block occurs for a reason: the idea isn’t working and a whole new approach is required. When you’re not writing, what do you enjoy doing? I love eating and cooking, travelling, walking, running, skiing and always, reading. What books can we expect from you next? I’ll have something for just about everyone in 2012! I’m very excited about my new picture book with David Legge (our fourth book together): ‘The Fearsome, Frightening, Ferocious Box’. I’ve also been working on a new series for ages 7+ called ‘Sword Girl’, illustrated by Gregory Rogers. The heroine, Tommy, lives and works in a medieval castle and dreams of becoming a knight. And of course I’m really looking forward to the release of ‘The Secret of Zanzibar’, the final book in the Gerander Trilogy. A lot of closely guarded secrets will be revealed!

People in Focus What are your top 5 tips for aspiring authors? 1. Be a reader - the best way to learn the craft of writing is by reading a lot. 2. When you start to write, don’t think of the publisher or the audience straight away - think of yourself and the kind of book that you would love to read. This will ensure your writing has plenty of heart.

3. Create characters that you and your readers can relate to. 4. Do a bit of planning before you write. You don’t have to plan out the whole book, but try to have some idea of what your book is about, to make your plot interesting and satisfying. 5. Last of all, don’t forget to edit yourself. I usually write three or more drafts of every book, trying to make it perfect.

Author: Frances Watts The first two books in The Gerander Trilogy introduce mice triplets Alistair, Alice and Alex. ‘The Songs of the Winns’ offers readers mystery and adventure; Alistair has been kidnapped and the discovery of a family secret means that Alistair’s life is in danger, unless Alex and Alice can find him first! ‘The Spies of Gerander’ is equally exciting; the triplets’ homeland of Gerander is in danger and under the rule of greedy Queen Eugenia



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The Gerander Trilogy: #1 The Songs of the Winns, #2 The Spies of Gerander

le EE FR e Sizz g usa Sa

of Souris. Along with their friend Tibby Rose, the triplets join an organisation working to free the country, but someone is determined to stop them. Is there a traitor in the organisation?

11.00am to 1.00pm

Tours of the College All welcome 256 Minmi Rd, Fletcher 2287 ph: (02) 4979 8484 www

Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College

These two books are ideal for children who enjoy reading adventure stories. Age Guide: 8+ Years Extent: The Songs of Winns: 304 Pages (Hardback) The Spies of Gerander: 336 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: The Songs of Winns: 9780733330506 The Spies of Gerander: 9780733329142 Price: AU $19.99 each Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers P: 1300 551 721

ndale! Free fun at Stockland Gle Join the my funland club today. It’s free and packed with fun!

Stockland Glendale

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the Hunter Wetlands Centre this Summ

Canoe Hire & Tours | Segway Tours | Dipnetting Reptile Encounters | Bird Feeding | Bike Tracks Walking Trails | Discovery Zone | Playground BBQ Areas | Cafe Nourish Bring the family Sunday 5th February for World Wetlands Day! 412 Sandgate Rd, Shortland NSW 2307 P: 02 4951 6466


3 -12 years

Share in stacks of giveaways, competitions and be the first to hear about all the latest news and fun events! Join online today! Visit

387 Lake Road, Glendale Ph: (02) 4954 9666


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Unique Animal Encounters at Taronga Zoo

With special thanks to the Taronga Zoo, Get Ahead Kids® has 5 Family Passes valued at approx. $112.60 each to giveaway! Each pass allows a family of 2 adults and 2 children (3-15 years) a wildlife experience at either Taronga Zoo Sydney or Taronga Western Plains Zoo. Visit and click the giveaways link for a chance to win one of these fantastic passes.

28 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Taronga’s three lively tiger cubs will be in lots of mischief these Christmas School Holidays.

The Chimpanzee family has settled in to their state of the art, awardwinning Chimpanzee Sanctuary.

Zoo Carnivore Supervisor, Louise Ginman said: “The three cubs are developing very quickly and watching mum’s every move.

Families have the unique chance to come face to face with these remarkable primates, interacting with the Chimps through a range of special features including a log tunnel ending with a glass panel in the exhibit.

It’s great to see their individual personalities grow and the natural instincts displayed as they spend longer on exhibit.” Taronga’s three Asian Elephant calves, Luk Chai, Pathi Harn and Tukta are making the most of their deep moat and waterfall pool, playing together throughout the day. With a collective weight over two tonnes, the play sessions can be very boisterous with lots of dunking and splashing.

The Zoo is open 9am-5pm every day of the Summer School Holidays. Families can contribute to wildlife conservation by doing your Christmas shopping at the Taronga Zoo Shop that stocks the largest range of zoo-related soft toys in Australia. If you do not visit the zoo prior to Christmas, these cuddly toys are also available online.

More Information P: 02 9969 2777

New LeapPad Explorer™

1L CaeapP ad to G rryNews C ive ase + a Va lue way! $25 d at 9.9 8

Key Features

LeapFrog is now making available the NEW tech tablet for kids, the LeapPad Explorer™. Similar to an adult tablet, the LeapPad Explorer™ is a multifunctional device created for children ages four years and older and features high tech learning and digital reading. LeapPad Explorer™ helps children learn while having fun! It improves their vocabulary, phonics and their reading skills whilst playing fun and interactive elements like embedded games and animated stories.

• Encompasses a large library of educational games, videos, e-Books, flash cards & kids’ favourite characters • Is fully compatible with the existing handheld Leapster Explorer library • Includes educational activities including spelling, maths and science to creativity, music & geography • Allows kids to perfect their writing skills with the nifty stylus • Improves creativity with a builtin camera, video recorder, microphone & animation studio • Adjusts the learning across all experiences so children can learn at their own pace • Creates an interactive experience that puts kids in the middle of the action with HD-like graphics • Withstands rough play & is designed for smaller hands

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With special thanks to LeapFrog, Get Ahead Kids® has 1 LeapPad & Green Carry Case valued at approx. $259.98 to giveaway! Visit and click the giveaways link for a chance to win the LeapPad and green carry case.


Lily’s Wish Author: Barbara Pyett Illustrator: Serena Geddes Lily has only one wish for Christmas this year - for a pair of wings so that she can fly to her Grandma who lives in another country. Lily writes a letter to explain her situation to Santa who is very understanding and does everything he can to help Lily wish her grandmother a happy Christmas. This is an endearing tale that is complemented by large, colourful illustrations. Age Guide: 4+ Years Extent: 32 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781921042829 Price: AU $9.95 Publisher: New Frontier Publishing P: 02 9453 1525

Star Wars: A Pop-Up Guide to the Galaxy

A Safe Place to Live

Author: Matthew Reinhart

‘A safe place to live’ is the story of Bic Walker and her family’s escape from war-torn Vietnam in 1979.

Packed with information, pop-outs, and colourful pictures and even working light sabres, this intricate popup book is certain to delight Star Wars fans of all ages. Each page opens to display a highly detailed character or equipment from the Star Wars series, and is sure to captivate reader’s interest with the detailed information. This is an ideal book for Star Wars fans. Age Guide: 5+ Years Extent: 6 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780439882828 Price: AU $36.35 Publisher: Scholastic Australia P: 02 4328 3555

Author: Bic Walker

Bic and her family along with many others, were squashed onto a small boat bound for Australia. After a harrowing three month journey consisting of hunger, pirates and bad weather they were rescued and eventually sent to live in Australia. A true story of courage and hope, this book is an excellent classroom tool to remind children that everyone is different and people come from different backgrounds. Age Guide: 5+ Years Extent: 21 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9780646565163 Price: AU $20.00 Publisher: Bic Walker Email:

Killer Koalas from Outer Space Author: Andy Griffiths Illustrator: Terry Denton

Unicorn Riders Series Author: Aleesah Darlison Illustrator: Jill Brailsford These books follow The Unicorn Riders on their magical adventures. In each book the riders are faced with new challenges and missions. The girls must work hard to complete each quest and uncover the secrets that lay ahead. These books are great for young readers as they are easy to read and encourage self belief and teamwork.

30 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

#1 Quinn’s Riddles ISBN: 9781921529979 #2 Willow’s Challenge ISBN: 9781921529986 #3 Krystal’s Choice ISBN: 9781921529993 #4 Ellabeth’s Test ISBN: 9781921720000 Age Guide: 8+ Years Extent: 128 Pages (Paperback) Price: AU $12.95 each (Quinn’s Riddle AU $6.50) Publisher: Walker Books Australia P: 02 9517 9577

‘Killer Koalas from Outer Space’ is a wacky, wild and weird book. This book contains short stories, jokes, cartoons, rhymes and even a crossword all written in very bad taste! The entertaining, easy to read stories and cartoons will keep kids entertained until the end. Age Guide: 7+ Years Extent: 180 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780330404464 Price: AU $19.99 Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia P: 02 9285 9100


Diary of a Wimpy Vampire: Best Start: Understanding #2 Prince of Dorkness your baby’s emotional Author: Tim Collins needs to create the best As a vampire, 15 year old Nigel Mullet beginnings doesn’t age, feel pain or sleep. His latest diary sees him starting term one at a new school; he is finally the most popular kid in the class and after 80 years of being single, has a girlfriend. But with the arrival of his new class mate Jason, life takes a turn for the worst - Jason steals his girlfriend, starts winning all the sporting events and hanging out with the cool kids. Nigel vows to get revenge on his dubious classmate, but the more he discovers about Jason, the more confused he becomes! What’s up with Jason, and how can Nigel win back his true love? The humour and illustrations in this novel make it an easy to read and enjoyable story. It is ideal for kids who enjoy diary style books, or who have a fascination for all things vampire! Age Guide: 10+ Years Extent: 221 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9780732292829 Price: AU $14.99 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers P: 1300 551 721

Author: Lynn Jenkins Psychologist Lynn Jenkins looks at how emotional foundations are formed in babies and the power that these have over the way in which kids develop. The author believes that babies’ early experiences and interactions provide the beginnings of their self-beliefs, thoughts and feelings; their self-esteem and self-value; interactions and how they behave socially. This is an excellent book written in simple language to help parents to instill their babies with trust, confidence, security and self worth. This book has checklists, tips, advice and even poems to help parents to provide the best start for their kids. Age Guide: Adults Extent: 132 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781921497896 Price: AU $19.99 Publisher: Exisle Publishing P: 02 4998 3327

The 2nd edition of this book contains updated information from recognised echidna research scientist Dr. Peggy Rismiller OAM. The story was first embroidered on companion quilts.

Author/Illustrator: Betty Johnston

This is a multi dimensional book that will appeal to children, parents and educators. The embossed artwork will fascinate young children and the line drawings are excellent as embroidery templates.

‘Mrs Echidna’s Dilemma’ won an IPPY (Independent Publishers) Award (USA) in May 2011.

The story will delight the young, and the scientific information will captivate readers of all ages. The

Mrs Echidna’s Dilemma

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A r e Yo u P r e g n a n t ? • Free & Confidential Pregnancy Tests • Free & Confidential Pregnancy Counseling Newcastle Pregnancy Help Service Shop 2/2 Market St, Newcastle NSW 2300 Ph/Fx: 02 4927 0131

reading experience is enhanced by the included DVD and the patterns for making finger-puppets of Australian animals. Age Guide: 3+ Years Extent: 26 Pages (Board Book) ISBN: 9780980480559 Price: AU $39.95 Publisher: 3e Innovative P: Scott Eathorne - 0418475801


Waste Not Director: Ruth Hessey Producer: Sophie Alstergren Australia is playing a vital role in polluting the world, coming second to America in the percentage of waste produced per person every year. This educational DVD offers an eye opening account into the way waste is disposed of and how it can be reused and transformed into a resource once more. An interesting look into how waste management is currently being handled and what we can do to make a better, more sustainable future. This book is a great classroom reference. Age Guide: Open Extent: 26 min (DVD) Recommended Classification: G Price: AU $71.50 Publisher: Ronin Films P: 02 6248 0851

Fifty Animals that Changed All-In Night Author: Lynne Burgess the Course of History Author: Eric Chaline How did the Spanish fly or the bald eagle change the course of history? This book offers readers excellent information of animals that have changed the course of history through time - some obvious, and some not so obvious! Each animal has its native name, size and class listed, as well as whether it is edible, medicinal, commercial or practical! This is the perfect book for animal lovers, classrooms and school assignments! Age Guide: 12+ Years Extent: 224 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9781742377131 Price: AU $35.00 Publisher: Allen & Unwin P: 02 8425 0100

Ken Duncan is one of Australia’s best photographers. In the latest books, Duncan depicts Australia in incredible colour photography. With photos spanning across double pages and quotes throughout the love and hope books they make excellent gifts or coffee table books. Australia Extent: 168 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780980834314 Price: AU $50.00

32 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Each chapter is broken into weeks and each week has a theme e.g. relaxation or exercise. The book also has ‘life lessons’ throughout offering handy tips and quotes. This is a great book for parents looking for ways to spend more time with their families. Age Guide: Adults Extent: 142 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781921632105 Price: AU $17.95 Publisher: Wombat Books P: 07 3245 1938

The Fart-ionary Author: Andy Jones Illustrator: David Puckeridge

Australia: Our Island Paradise, Inspirational Hope & Inspirational Love Photographer: Ken Duncan

This book highlights the need for families to spend time together regularly. The book suggests that one night a week is dedicated to the family being together and enjoying each other’s company.

Inspirational Hope Extent: 48 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780980834338 Price: AU $12.95 Inspirational Love Extent: 48 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9780980834321 Price: AU $12.95 Age Guide: Open Publisher: Panographs Publishing P: 02 4367 6777

‘The Fart-ionary’ is a hilarious book with endless facts about farting; jammed with information about foods and exercises that increase farting to the physics and science behind it. Kids will laugh at the ridiculous poems and stories, but also be fascinated by the subtle facts about the human body! This book is an excellent way to get uninterested readers interested! Age Guide: 6+ Years Extent: 272 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9780733330568 Price: AU $14.99 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers P: 1300 551 721


Girl’s Guide to DIY: Easy Projects that Every Girl Can Do Authors: Jo Behari & Alison Winfield-Chislett Aimed at the beginner level, this book covers all the DIY basics from painting and decorating to hanging shelves and curtains! Filled with tips, easy shortcuts and technique hints, the book comes complete with a difficulty rating, a list of tools needed and the steps to complete the task. Providing advice on basic home maintenance and decorating projects, this is the ideal book for any single girl! Age Guide: 16+ Years Extent: 144 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781742572192 Price: AU $24.95 Publisher: New Holland Publishers P: 02 8986 4700

The Things that Nobody Knows: 501 Mysteries of Life, the Universe and Everything

Get Ahead KidsÂŽ Partners

Author: William Hartston Have you ever wondered if Neanderthals talked to each other, or how the animals of Madagascar got there, or what about where the order of the alphabet came from? This book has all the answers to the questions you never thought to ask! Readers will be intrigued by all the interesting facts this book has to offer. A great book for curious readers of all ages!

hey dee ho music runs music programs for 1- 5 year olds. There are franchise opportunities in the inner Sydney suburbs & the northern suburbs of Adelaide.

Age Guide: 12+ Years Extent: 384 Pages (Hardback) ISBN: 9781848878259 Price: AU $35.00 Publisher: Allen & Unwin P: 02 8425 0100

Franchise Enquiries: (03) 9786 3104 |

Ishmael and the Hoops of Steel Author: Michael Gerard Bauer The end of high school is fast approaching and Ishmael Leseur and his friends face it head on; aiming to win the house championship, the debating cup, battle of the bands and take out the volleyball trophy! Can the boys succeed on their ambitious missions and finish year 12 with a bang? A humorous and realistic take on life in senior high school, the book deals with common teenage issues; family problems, sexuality, friendship, and decisions on life after school.

Age Guide: 12+ Years Extent: 336 Pages (Paperback) ISBN: 9781862919174 Price: AU $19.99 Publisher: Omnibus Books for Scholastic Australia P: 02 4328 3555


Pilates, Brass Band, Choir, Chess, Table Tennis, Judo, Akido Kickboxing Boxing, Gymnastics, Circus, Dancing, Fencing

P: 4961 4493 |



Article Themes 2012 January/February Back to School - Vanessa Amorosi Ad Booking Deadline Nov 11, 2011 Editorial Deadline Nov 18, 2011

March/April Physical Education - The Commando Ad Booking Deadline Feb 10, 2012 Editorial Deadline Feb 17, 2012

May/June Languages & Communications Jessica Rowe Ad Booking Deadline Apr 5, 2012 Editorial Deadline Apr 13, 2012

July/August Learning Innovations & Technology David Reyne Ad Booking Deadline May 25, 2012 Editorial Deadline Jun 1, 2012

September/October Study & Assessment - Iain Hewitson Ad Booking Deadline Aug 10, 2012 Editorial Deadline Aug 17, 2012

November/December Summer Learning - Nicole Livingstone Ad Booking Deadline Oct 1, 2012 Editorial Deadline Oct 15, 2012 EDUC ATIN G


® Vol. 4 • No. 2

Advertisers Index 100% Kids Expo by Eclipse Media, Events & PR 9 Australian Dance & Talent Centre 21 Australian Literacy Clinic Pty Ltd 11 Baby Ballerinas & Co 29 Belmont Dance Centre 21 Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College 27 hey dee ho music 33 Hunter Development Corporation 13 Hunter Valley Grammar School 15 Hunter Wetlands Centre 27 I Can Read System 33 INParenting 33 InZane Football 5 Irlen Diagnostic Clinic 9 Karrawong Kindy 15 KidsSmile 23 Kindy Patch Early Education Centres (G8 Education) 4 KU Children Services 11 Lift Dance Fitness 21 Little Kickers Newcastle 21 Macleay College 19 Mission Australia Early Learning Services 19 NCP Printing 31 New England Girl’s School 17 Newcastle Caravan, Camping & Holiday Expo 17 Newcastle Family and Sports Podiatry 36 Newcastle Grammar School 7 Newcastle Pregnancy Help Service 31 Newcastle Museum 2 PCYC 33 Pilates for Life 13 Reading Cinema 15 33 Starz on Stage Talent Academy 21 Stockland Glendale 27 Susan K Walton Optometrist 23 TAFE NSW Hunter Institute 5 The Master’s Touch Coaching 19 Woven Labels Direct 11 Yoga Bugs Newcastle 21

• Mar/Apr 2 012

For more advertising information please contact Maria Charlton | | P: 02 4929 7766

Advertisers media kit & booking form at

2012 March/April GST $6.60 AUD INC Subscription 02




Celebrity Spotlight The Commando Biggest Loser Trainer

Physical Education Issue out

March 2012 34 Get Ahead Kids® Jan/Feb 12

Activity Zone

Homophone Crossword Homophones are words that sound the same but have different meanings. Can you solve the crossword by solving the clues. The homophone list holds the answers. 2.





6. 7.







14. 15. 16.


Down 18.

Homophone List Hair Male Right Mane One Tow Night Pale Tea Meet

Hare Mail Write Main Won Toe Knight Pail Tee Meat

More reviews, activities & answers at

1. Letters in the letterbox 2. A bucket 3. A piece in the game of chess 4. A digit that is part of a foot 6. Opposite of female 9. Opposite of wrong 11. A pen is used to do this 12. Part of a healthy balanced diet 17. The number before two Across 4. A hot drink made with leaves 5. The important part 7. To be lighter in colour 8. A male rabbit 10. Opposite of day 11. If you came first in a race 13. It grows on your head 14. To get together 15. A golf ball is placed on this stand 16. To pull a trailer or boat 18. The lions neck hair


home of

healthy feet treating foot & lower limb conditions for all the family

• child assessment & treatments • sporting injury treatments • orthotic therapy & prescriptions • general health & wellbeing 51 Denison St Hamilton East

Get Ahead Kids Magazine Vol. 4. No. 1. Jan/Feb 2012  

Get Ahead Kids is an educational magazine for kids from 0-25 and their families. Full of quality educational articles and activities, design...

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