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Sunday 1 October 2023




As parents, it is always important to remember that when it comes to our children, that we NEED to be on the same team, and that we need to let go of certain ideas and expectations. It is always about what is best for our child and not ourselves. Even if we have different parenting styles, we are both working towards the same goal: raising happy and healthy children.

When we disagree on how to raise our children, it is important to stay calm and respectful of each other. Remember that, even if it looks differently to your way of expressing love, (generally) you both love your children equally and want what is best for them. But because we are different people, come from different backgrounds and have different types of relationships and expectations of our children, we will not always see eye to eye when it comes to raising our children.

Here are a few tips that have helped me and my hubby through the years - and we still forget sometimes, but we keep working on it. Keep these in mind when having disagreements.

It is important to talk it out privately. We need to avoid discussing parenting disagreements in front of our children. This can be confusing and upsetting for them. Instead, find a time to talk privately and calmly about any concerns. Listen to each other's perspectives. We must try to see things from our partner's point of view, as well. Why do they feel the way they do? What are their concerns? And then be willing to compromise. We may not be able to agree on everything, but we should be willing to find a middle ground. This may mean meeting each other halfway or agreeing to disagree on certain issues.

Something that has been a great help for us as a couple and parents, is to have regular parenting meetings (when we are in a good space). We use this as a time to discuss our children's progress, any challenges we are facing, and our plans for their future. It makes a huge difference to have these discussions before any conflict happens, because then we already have voiced our expectations and tend to handle any conflict regarding our children better.

Communicate openly and honestly. This means talking about our parenting philosophies, expectations, and concerns. It also means being willing to listen to our partner's point of view, even if you disagree. Be supportive of each other. This means having each other's backs, even when you make mistakes. It also means being willing to help when your partner needs it or even when you are mad each other. Be consistent. Our children need to know what to expect from us as parents. When we as parents are on the same page, it makes it easier to set boundaries.

Find a common ground and let that be the focus. What do we agree on when it comes to raising our children? What are our shared values? Focus on these things when resolving disagreements. Be patient and understanding with each other. It may take some time to find solutions that work for both parents and children. Be patient with each other and be willing to try new ideas and ways.

When we divide and conquer, we become a team. Parenting can be a lot of work, so it's important to divide the tasks and responsibilities fairly. This could mean taking turns with childcare, housework, or errands. It also helps to cut down on resentment between us as parents.

But most important, make time for each other. It's important to remember that we are a couple first and parents second. Make time for regular date nights or other activities that we enjoy together. This will help us to stay connected and supportive of each other.

ALWAYS present a united front. Even if we disagree on some things, it is important to present a united front to our children. This means avoiding criticizing each other's parenting decisions in front of our children, whether they are toddlers or teens.

Many couples disagree on how to raise their children. Parenting is hard. Don’t give up on yourselves or each other. If you are struggling to resolve your disagreements on your own, consider seeking professional help from a therapist or counsellor. They will be able help you to communicate more effectively and find solutions that work for both of you. Remember, it’s not about us. It is about what is best for our children.

Parenting can be challenging, but it's also one of the most rewarding experiences in life. By working together as a team, we as parents can create a loving and supportive environment for our children to thrive. 



Side note: If you are in a relationship with an abusive parent, it is important to remember that you are not alone. There are people who can help you and your children.

Childline South Africa, a 24-hour free helpline for reporting and counselling: 0800 055 555.

Childhelp USA: 1-800-422-4453

116 111 Helpline for children (Most European countries)

Others:  Child protection | UNICEF East Asia and Pacific



Saturday 16 September 2023

Brushing teeth and little ones.

Brushing teeth can sometimes be a challenge for a parent and a little child too. Teaching little children how to brush their teeth is an important part of helping them develop good oral hygiene habits that will last a lifetime. It’s also a life skill. By starting early, we can often turn this into a positive habit instead of a tug of war with threats from the grown-ups to an upset youngster.

We can begin by wiping our baby's gums with a clean, wet cloth after feedings. As soon as their first tooth erupts, start brushing twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. It is always fun for small children to choose their own toothbrush and toothpaste.

An electric or battery-operated toothbrush is a wonderful beginner’s toothbrush. It is easier to use, because it basically does the brushing for you, especially for little ones who haven’t learned the proper brushing technique, yet. This can be especially helpful for young children who may not have the dexterity or patience to brush their teeth effectively with a manual toothbrush.

Electric toothbrushes are easier, so this is important for little children, who are more prone to cavities than adults. It is usually also way more fun. It often has entertaining features, such as timers, lights, and music, that can motivate young children to brush their teeth for the full two minutes recommended by dentists. I have found through the years that electric toothbrush are great for teething, helping, and massaging those itchy gums. If your small child likes to put toys in their mouths or even with biting, electric toothbrushes might do the trick.   

Something else to consider when getting an electric or battery-operated toothbrush, is to choose a toothbrush with a small, soft brush head that is appropriate for your child's age and mouth size. Choosing one that has a built-in timer will be helpful and might just encourage them to brush the full two minutes. Brushing your teeth together will help to model the correct way. Singing songs or tell stories while brushing together can also add some fun.

Be a good role model. Explain why oral hygiene is important at their age level. And when our little ones see us brushing, flossing our teeth, and choosing healthy food regularly, they will follow suit. And let your child practice, brushing their own teeth. As your child get older, you can demonstrate the proper brushing techniques, brushing the surfaces including the front, back, top and tongue.

You can also have a chat with your dentist when choosing the correct toothbrush. They can provide you with additional tips and advice on how to help your child develop good oral hygiene habits.

Remember to be patient and encouraging through all of this. Your little one might not always be cooperative. And that is fine and normal, especial when they are very young. And it may take some time for them to learn how to brush their teeth properly. Praise their efforts, and as they develop this life skill, keep on encouraging them.  


Friday 15 September 2023

Rocking the and rocks.....

One of the greatest gems to be found by a child.... are rocks. And they will collect them no matter where you go...and you will find them home in secret places and in the classroom. For a child, finding a special rock is like finding a treasure. It is a unique and precious object that they can keep and cherish. It is a reminder of the amazing world around them and the endless possibilities that it holds.

Rocks are a source of endless fascination for children. They come in all shapes, sizes, colours, and textures. They can be smooth and polished, or rough and jagged. They can be heavy or light. They can be found in all sorts of places, from the beach to the mountains to the garden. Rocks are a natural and versatile material that can be used for a variety of learning purposes, and it is a great way to make learning fun and engaging.

Rocks are beautiful. Children are naturally drawn to things that are visually appealing. Rocks come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and textures, which makes them very interesting to look at. Rocks are mysterious. Children are curious about the world around them, and rocks are full of mysteries. It can inspire them to ask questions like: Where do they come from? How are they formed? What are they made of? Children love to explore these mysteries and learn more about the world of rocks. Rocks are powerful and is a symbol of the power of nature. They can be used to build things and create tools. Rocks are versatile and can be used for many different things. Children can play with them, build with them, paint them, and even use them to tell stories.

Children are naturally curious about the world around them, and rocks are a great way to learn about different shapes, colors, and textures. They can also learn about the different types of rocks and minerals, how they are formed, and where they can be found. Collecting rocks can be a fun way for children to explore their surroundings. They can go on nature walks, hikes, or even just look around their gardens for interesting rocks to add to their collection. Children also love having something that is truly their own. A collection of rocks or other natural objects gives them a sense of ownership and pride. They can use their rocks to create all sorts of things, such as jewelry, sculptures, and even works of art. This can help them develop their creativity and imagination. Children can share their rock collections with friends and family, which can help them develop social skills and make new friends. Rocks can also be a way for children to remember special places or events. For example, they might collect a rock from every place they visit while on holiday. Providing children with a container for their rock treasures can make them feel more connected to their finds. It gives them a place to store their treasures safely and securely, and it also allows them to display their collection proudly.

We use this love for rocks in our classroom to develop our little friends Math's skills through play. For instance, we use the rocks for building towers, houses and other structures. Our little friends can experiment with different shapes and sizes to see what works best for their creations. In this way, they also are exposed in a playful manner to the different properties of rocks. We use it for sorting size, shape, colour or texture. They then create their own categories for rocks, such as "shiny rocks" or "smooth rocks." We like using the rocks to develop their patterning skills and encourage them to explore different ways for their rocks to be arranged. Rocks, we have found, are a great addition to any sensory bin or playdough activities. We like to write numbers or letters on the rocks for some extra incidental and playful learning. Rocks can be used for creative play activities such as painting, drawing, and collage. Our little friends use their imaginations to create all sorts of different things with rocks.

Rocks can be used to play a variety of other math games, especially for our older friends such as addition and subtraction. For example, we play a game where they have to match rocks to different numbers or where they have to add or subtract rocks to find a total. Rocks can be used to measure different quantities, such as length and weight. For example, our little friends use rocks to measure the length of a toy or test the weight of a toy in our balancing scale. A variety of science experiments can also be done with rocks. We do experiments on erosion, weathering, and density. For example, we have set up an experiment to see how different types of rocks erode at different rates, or how to purify water using rocks. Our little friends also like to tell stories using rocks.

Picking up small rocks and sorting them requires fine motor skills, which are important for tasks such as writing and cutting. It takes patience and focus to find the perfect rock, and to sort and organize a collection. Children need to use problem-solving skills to figure out how to find the specific rocks they want, and how to display their collection. Collecting rocks can encourage children to explore their surroundings and learn about the natural world. And when children find a special rock or complete their collection, it can boost their self-esteem and sense of accomplishment.

Collecting rocks can be a fun and rewarding hobby for children of all ages. It can help them learn about the world around them, develop their creativity, and make memories that will last a lifetime. If your child is interested in collecting rocks, you can take them for nature walks, help them set up a display shelf for their collection and encourage them to learn more about rocks and minerals.

I hope these ideas give you some inspiration for using rocks in your classroom and be more acceptable of them at home. It is wonderful that children are so drawn to rocks. Rocks are a valuable part of our world, and they can teach children so much about nature, science, and creativity.

Have fun rocking the rocks at home and in the classroom!



Saturday 2 September 2023

Why we are using process art in the preschool:


We love using process art in our classroom.

Process art is a type of art that focuses on the process of creating, rather than the final product. I highly recommend that it should be used in preschools because it allows our children to explore their creativity and express themselves freely. And it is a fun way to learn how to think outside the box.

Here are some of the different types of process art that we are using in our preschool classroom:

  • Painting: Our children can use their hands, brushes, feathers, sticks, crumbled paper, strings, sponges, etc. to paint with different colours and textures.
  • Drawing: Our children use their fingers, crayons, markers, charcoal, highlighters, different types of pens and pencils, etc. to draw whatever they like.
  • Collage: Our children can cut and paste different materials, such as tissue paper, wool, buttons, felt, string, ribbon, etc. to create a collage.
  • Modeling: Our children can use clay, playdough, or other materials to create three-dimensional objects.
  • Printmaking: Our children can use blocks, stamps, or other objects to create different types of prints.
  • Nature art: Our children can collect natural materials, such as leaves, flowers, rocks, sticks, etc. and use them to create their own art.

We believe that process art is a great way for our preschoolers to develop their creativity, fine motor skills, and problem-solving skills. It also allows them to express themselves freely and explore their imaginations.

Here are some tips for doing process art in your preschool class:

  • By providing a variety of materials for your class children to use. This will give them more options and allow them to be more creative.
  • By offering them open-ended suggestions, rather than giving specific instructions. This will allow your children to explore their own ideas and make their own choices.
  • By being patient and letting your children take their time. Process art is not about creating a perfect product according to our adult standards, it is about the process and freedom of creating.
  • By encouraging your children to talk about their art. This will also help them to develop their language skills and how to express themselves better.
  • By displaying your children's art in the classroom. This will make them feel proud of their work and encourage them to continue creating.

Process art is truly a valuable tool for preschool education. I love using process art in my class as it helps my children to develop their creativity, fine motor skills, problem-solving skills, and language skills. It also gives them confidence in themselves and the application of their own understanding and experience. It is also a helpful and safe way for them to express their emotional status.

If it seems overwhelming and you are afraid of the mess, start small. Start with drawing. Add different types of markers and crayons. Add envelopes, stickers, stamps and coloured paper, and a punch or two. Have a little bin nearby and demonstrate to your little friends how to use it. And you don't need to change the table completely every week. Just change one or two products at a time and see how much fun your little friends will have with this. And once you have this as a routine, move to the next activity, like collaging. And after every two or three weeks of introducing a different area with process art, you will become more confident in these presentations and your little friends will become more creative and confident in expressing themselves using process art.

I hope that as you read this article as a teacher or parent, you will help your preschooler to have a more positive experience with process art and that you will trust them in their development. Try not to mess the mess or noise and just have fun!

Saturday 10 June 2023


Painting zebra stripes, we practiced painting from L to R crossing our midline. This activity created an opportunity for our little friends learning about patterns and attempting painting continuous straight lines.

Although we encourage at times for our little friends to paint left to right, there is no specific scientific reason why painting from left to right with preschoolers is important. And because we focus on process art, there is no right or wrong way for our preschoolers to paint. However, we do believe that painting from left to right at times, we can help our little friends to develop their fine motor skills, and crossing their midline helps with their hand-eye coordination. This is purely because the majority of people read and write from left to right.

Additionally, some teachers do believe that by painting from left to right can help preschoolers develop a sense of order and organization. When they paint from left to right, they are essentially creating a line that goes from beginning to end. This can help them to learn about sequencing as well.

However, whether or not to encourage your preschoolers to paint from left to right is up to you as a teacher. There is no right or wrong answer, and what works best for one child may not work best for another.

Saturday 27 May 2023

Letting our kids wrestle with skills....

For our little friends taking age-appropriate risks are an important part of their childhood. It helps them learn and grow in so many ways. Here are some of the reasons why we need to encourage our young children to take risks:

  • It helps our little friends to learn and grow. When children take risks, they are stepping outside of their comfort zone and try new things. This can help them to learn and grow in many ways. For example, it can help them to develop their problem-solving skills, their creativity, and their confidence.
  • It helps them build resilience. When children experience setbacks and trying again, it can help them to build resilience. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from challenges. When children learn to take risks and deal with the consequences, they are building resilience.
  • It helps them develop a sense of self-efficacy. Self-efficacy is the belief that you can succeed. When children take risks and succeed, it helps them to develop a sense of self-efficacy. This can lead to them taking more risks in the future.
  • It helps them have fun. Taking risks can be a lot of fun. When children are allowed to take risks and explore, they are more likely to have a positive and fulfilling childhood.

Of course, it is important to encourage our children to take safe risks. We should not encourage them to do anything that could put them in danger. However, we should also not be too overprotective. We need to let them take some risks so that they can learn and grow. This is so important for our little friends' confidence, independence, their emotional, social and physical development. And we so often see in our schools which little friends have a hard time with this and struggles to be independent, make choices with confidence and stand up for themselves and others.

Here are some tips for encouraging our young children to take risks:

  • Model risk-taking behavior. Children learn by watching the adults in their lives. If you want your children to take risks, be a role model and show them that you are willing to take risks yourself. Learn new skills like surfboarding and let them see you practicing and falling, trying again. 
  • Talk to your children about risk-taking. Explain to them that taking risks is a normal part of life and that it is important to learn from your mistakes. For instance, you can talk about starting your new hobby like art classes and talking about feelings for instance being nervous meeting new people and learning a new skill, but still trying.
  • Start small. Don't expect your children to take big risks right away. Start by encouraging them to take small risks, such as trying a new food, going on a jungle gym, swinging higher or playing a new game. If they need something that is a bit high to reach, ask them how they can get to it without adult intervention, e.g., they want a bowl on a higher shelf, then they can pull a chair closer, etc.
  • Be supportive. When your children take risks, be there to support them. Let them know that you believe in them and that you are there for them if they need anything.
  • Celebrate their successes. When your children take risks and succeed, be sure to celebrate their successes. This will encourage them to take more risks in the future.

As the adults in our children's lives, we tend to anticipate their needs. We tend to say: 'be careful' so often, that we smother their beings and courage. Using the phrase "be careful" can be helpful in some situations, but it can also be discouraging and disempowering for our young children. It can make them feel like they are not capable of taking care of themselves, and it can discourage them from taking risks and exploring their environment. We want and need them to explore, take risks and be independent, as this is when our young children really learn.

Here are some alternatives to saying "be careful" to small children:

  • "What can you do to be safe?" This helps children to think about safety and how they can protect themselves.
  • "Let's try that together." This shows children that you are there to support them and that you believe in them.
  • "I trust you." This gives children a sense of confidence and empowerment.
  • "What's your plan?" This helps children to think about the consequences of their actions and to make safe choices.
  • "Can you show me how you're going to do that?" This helps children to learn how to assess risk and to make safe decisions.
  • "What if…?" This helps children to think about the potential consequences of their actions.
  • "I'm here if you need me." This gives children a sense of security and safety.
  • "Watch your feet" or "remember it is hot". This helps children to focus on WHY they need to be careful, and it teaches them to reason and think for themselves.

It is important to choose the right words for the situation. If you are concerned about a child's safety, you can still use the phrase "be careful," but you can also add other words or phrases to make it more positive and empowering. For example, you could say, "Be careful (watch your feet, watch your hands, watch the walls", I know you can do it."

The most important thing we can do is to talk to our children about safety in a way that is age-appropriate and that makes them feel confident and capable. By following these tips, we can help our children learn to take risks and grow into confident and resilient adults. These skills will benefit them at school, in the classroom, when visiting friends and in life.


Our Transport sensory tray and why we love sensory trays in our classrooms.


One of our favourite sensory trays for our Transport enquiry: coloured pasta, transport containers, tweezers and spoons.

Our little friends learn all different math skills like 'fill it up', 'empty', they count how many scoops it takes to fill up a container, colours, etc.

 It's also a fantastic fun fine motor activity using the spoons and tweezers.

Sensory activities are an important part of our daily preschool activities, because they offer many benefits for our little friends' development. Here are some of the reasons why we do sensory activities with our little friends in our preschool:

  • Sensory play helps our children learn about the world around them. When they use their senses to explore different materials, they are learning about the properties of those materials. For example, they learn that sand is soft and slippery, water is wet and cold, and beans are hard and bumpy. This sensory knowledge helps our children to make sense of the world around them.
  • Sensory play encourages developing their fine motor skills. Many sensory activities involve using their hands and fingers, such as playing with play dough, threading beads, or pouring water. These activities help our children to develop their hand-eye coordination, dexterity, and strength.
  • Sensory play can also assist with their gross motor skills. Some sensory activities involve moving the whole body, such as dancing in a ball pit or rolling around in a pile of leaves. These activities help our children developing their balance, coordination, midline crossing and strength.
  • Sensory play develops their cognitive skills. When our children use their senses to explore and learn, they are also developing their cognitive skills, such as problem-solving, memory, and attention. For example, a little friend who is playing with a sorting bin is learning to sort objects by color, size, or shape.
  • Sensory play is also great in developing their social skills. Sensory activities often involve sharing and taking turns, which helps our children to develop their social skills. For example, a little friend who is playing with sand is learning to share the sand with their other little friends and to take turns using the tools.
  • Sensory play develops their emotional skills. Sensory play can be calming and relaxing, which can help our children to manage their emotions. For example, a little friend who is feeling stressed or anxious may benefit from playing with a sensory bin filled with rice or beans.

Overall, sensory play is a valuable part of our preschool education because it offers many benefits to our little friends and their development. It is important to us to provide them daily with a variety of sensory experiences so that they can explore and learn in a fun and stimulating way.

Here are some examples of sensory activities that we have done in our preschool:

  • Water play: This is always a huge hit with our little friends and has such a calming effect on them. Our children play with water in a variety of ways, such as pouring it, splashing it, using it to wash other toys in it, etc. We also sometimes add bubbles or essence to it.
  • Sand play: Our children play with sand in our sandpit outside or our sensory bin inside. Our little friends build sandcastles, make sand sculptures, bury toys in the sand, diggs, etc.
  • Sensory bins: Our sensory bins are containers filled with different materials, such as rice, beans, water, shaving cream, pasta, etc. Our children can explore the materials with their hands, from the moment they arrive in class.
  • Painting: Our children can paint with different materials, such as finger paints, tempera paints, watercolors, sponges, rollers, etc. They can also paint with their hands or feet.
  • Play dough: Our children can play with play dough by rolling it, shaping it, pinching it, cutting it, making different designs, etc.
  • Music and movement: Our children listen to music daily, they can also dance, sing, or play musical instruments. We also give them the opportunity to use different objects like bean bags, scarves, balls and hoops for movement. We also build different obstacle courses for our children to move through.
  • Nature exploration: Our children can explore the natural world by going on walks, collecting leaves, playing outside and in the mud. Outside time is our favourite time for all our senses to develop.

These are just a few examples of the many sensory activities that we do in our preschool. The joy and possibilities are endless!


    As parents, it is always important to remember that when it comes to our children, that we NEED to be on the same team, and that we ...