After Hours Child Care

Child care options for sick kids

While parents would love to stay home with their ill children, sometimes it simply is not possible. Whether you don’t have any sick days left, you can’t get any coverage at work or you just need the money, sometimes you need to attend work while your child can’t go into their normal child care situation. Here are some options.  The ‘get well’ room Some child care centres have a room where you can send children who are no longer very sick but cannot yet head back into the main room as they are low in energy or still in the exclusion period. This can be a great advantage for parents with kids with recurring minor issues — such as niggling ear infections or recurring sinusitis, so it’s well worth looking for this service when comparing child care centres.  Informal care Particularly if your child is not that unwell, but is still in an exclusion period after an infectious disease such as gastro, this can be a good time to take advantage of those offers from friends and family to look after your children. It’s a good chance for them to snuggle up and watch a movie with your bub, or just chill out and spend some time together.  Work from home This can also be a time to ask your boss for a chance to work from home. This isn’t possible for all jobs, but if your child is going to be pretty relaxed and sleep most of the day, you can often get enough done to keep up with work. Who knows — if it works out well,... read more

Speech Therapy Exercises to Try at Home

Because many adults don’t have any memory of the time they spent learning the English language, they often don’t realize how difficult it is for children to acquire. While some children struggle with the pronunciation of certain consonants, especially “r,” others deal with stutters or slurs that can only be fixed with helpful speech therapy. If your child is nearing this stage and appears to have trouble forming words, there are plenty of exercises to try at home to supplement the work of a professional therapist. Bubbles Possibly the best idea on this list, blowing bubbles is actually a great way to learn control over one’s breath and lips. Children will begin to understand how to correctly move their mouth to produce different shapes of bubbles, and most importantly, it’s fun. You should have little trouble getting your little one to take part in this activity. Playing an Instrument While small children won’t be able to master the flute or trombone, simpler instruments like a kazoo or harmonica are also effective at teaching breath and vocal control. Although these are inexpensive, children will enjoy hearing the sounds they are making, and similar to bubble blowing, they will gain greater influence over their mouth and voice. Ice Cream Kid-friendly, delicious, and inexpensive—what more could you ask for in a speech therapy exercise? Licking an ice cream cone (with only the tongue, not the lips) can improve the use of one’s tongue. As a result, words will be easier to pronounce clearly and properly. Flash Cards If your child is old enough to read, putting the sounds or words they are... read more

Childcare options for teenagers

As children go through primary school and into high school, more and more of the parents who used to be full-time stay-at-home parents start to enter the workforce. Unfortunately, the full-time work hours of many offices do not co-ordinate with the much shorter days or the school system, or the long school holidays. Studies have shown that childcare for older children can be just as important as childcare for younger children, as unsupervised teens and preteens are more likely to smoke, use alcohol and drugs if they spend more than 11 hours a week unsupervised. If you are trying to work out the best option for after-school care, here are some things to keep in mind. Local community centre after school programs While you may not be able to put your teen into the neighbourhood 0-5 daycare centre, many community centres have after-school programs for teens and preteens with sporting activities and an area for the kids to complete homework and spend time with friends. These programs can be great fun for your teens to attend, and give your teen a chance to do some social interaction time in a supervised environment. Any fees for the program should be eligible for the childcare rebate if this is a ‘approved care‘ program, as assessed by the government. Swapping homes If you can get home early one or two afternoons a week, you can often organise a swap with other class parents so that a few times a week your child can go to another child’s home and be supervised by their parent and then you supervise the children on another... read more

Finding a child care centre for your multiples

If you are the proud parents of twins or high order multiples it can be even more challenging to find child care. Not only do you need to find a centre with more than one vacant spot in the correct room, you also need to find a centre that can deal with extra challenges of multiples. Here are some of the issues to discuss with a centre like One World Children’s Centre. The sleep situation For some multiples, especially when babies, it’s much easier for them to sleep when they are next to each other. Unfortunately having babies sleeping in the same cribs can be against policy, particularly for centres that are not use to multiples. Also you may want to keep your babies on the same sleep schedule as each other and its worth discussing this issue with the centre early on. While many centres have a policy of separate sleeping spaces for each child, it’s worth discussing your specific needs and desires given your more unique situation. The cost arrangements While the Australian government provides generous benefits for working parents, it can still be hard for parents of multiples to justify the costs of full time child care particularly in the infant years. If you are not planning on working full days on at least some of the days you are work, it can be worth asking for a discounted rate for those days. It can also be worth asking for a sibling rate for your family, given the lower costs of administration for families with multiple children. The child care approach Many parent of multiples feel... read more

Preparing your child for the start of preschool

If you are looking to prepare your child for the start of preschool, there are some easy steps you can take before school starts. Here are some things that parents and carers can do to help their child prepare for a preschool environment. Practise waiting Self control is an important skill for young children starting preschool, and children need to control their urges to play their games rather than the activities the teacher is trying to get the class to work on. You can help your child adjust to the need to wait a little longer for their needs to be met by taking some little breaks before you meet their needs. You can also help them by modelling the self control you use, by discussing the things that you want to do but that you are choosing not to do for some reason. When it comes to self control, practise is extremely important, so you can inject these small self control exercises into your day-to-day life. Practise sharing Preschool comes with a new challenge of needing to share and take turns with other children. This can be especially challenging for children who are only children or who have siblings who are very far apart in age. You can help children develop this ability by setting up playdates with similarly aged children. It can also be a great idea to have some playdates with some of their classmates after the first few days of class.  Practise your before school routine If your child has been staying at home so far and is not used to getting up at a... read more

About Me

A child at play in a play place turning around to look at their friend

I work as a nurse, and I’m separated from my husband, so it’s quite complicated for us to work out child care sometimes. We have an family child care centre down the road that is amazing and does so much to keep our family ticking when we need child care out of hours. I know I’m not the only one who needs flexibility in child care, and I know that a lot of other parents are also struggling with the juggle of managing child care out of the normal opening hours of a centre. This blog is a place to share ideas and solutions we have worked out, with each other.