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Sunday 8 November 2020

Santa is coming to town.

Christmas celebrations can include a variety of low cost activities and does not have to be limited to just gift giving on Christmas morning. Making Christmas decorations and homemade gifts together and singing carols by candle lights can become some of your child’s most precious Christmas memories. We do Santa letters and depending on your child’s age or ability, they can either write to Santa, draw pictures or cut pictures from toy catalogues to stick on their letter to Santa. 

Christmas time is also a special opportunity to teach our children about what is truly important and not forgetting those who are less fortunate. Give responsibly and support other parents by buying their children practical gifts. In our home we have a rule that for every toy our boys receive, they have to give one away. We feel that this teaches them about generosity and it also helps limiting their amount of toys, otherwise they might not appreciate the new ones. 

Walking down the toy aisles can be quite overwhelming. The variety of toys are amazing and it makes it very hard for us as parents to choose the perfect gift for our child, which might result in you deciding to buy them more than one. Spreading your gift shopping throughout the year, keeping an eye out for when there are specials, can help minimize gift expenses around Christmas time.

Probably one of the greatest gifts you can invest in, are books. It can be a story book or a non-fiction book about a topic that your child is interested in. Books creates opportunities for you to connect with your children when you sit down, take a breath and read with them. 

If you are considering a different type of gift, please remember that the perfect gift is one that will encourage your child to play. Through play our children are developing many different skills such as social, problem solving, reasoning, fine motor, gross motor, creativity, self-regulation, language, communication and more. Play provides them with an opportunity to explore and discover and develop their cognitive abilities. Here are some gift ideas that encourages play:

·         Blocks - wooden, plastic, large, small, foam or magnet

·         Vehicles - water, land, air, small, big, noisy, quiet, made from different materials and traffic signs. You can even make up a combo that includes cars, blocks, traffic signs and thick cardboard pieces for building ramps.

·         Animals and bugs - different types, sizes and made from different materials

·         Pretend play props - doctor’s kit, tools, vet kit, shop kit, kitchen set, dress up clothes, tents and hats

·         Puzzles - wooden, foam, floor, alphabet or number

·         Games - board games, dominoes, card games or memory games

·         Science kits that are age appropriate

·         Sensory play - sand, playdough, kinetic sand and toys suitable for these different mediums

·         Gross motor activities - trampolines, different balls, skipping ropes, hoops, different rackets, tunnels, balancing beams, a scooter, bicycle or tricycle

·         Craft kits with items such as paper, scissors, stickers, different drawing tools, paint, glue or glitter

Even though there are so many different options to consider, the choice is ultimately simple: Is this gift really all about your child? Did you consider your child’s personality, and will this gift invite them to play? Can you as their parent join in this play for connecting time? If you are unsure, then it is most probably not the right gift to buy.

Ultimately Christmas is about Love, Peace, and Hope. 

Have fun shopping and see you in the toy aisle!

Ho! Ho! Ho!

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