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Category: Day Care

Tips for successfully weaning your baby
Tips for successfully weaning your baby

Weaning your infant can be a challenge, but these tips from our crèche near Parkmore will help make this a smooth transition for you and your little one.

  • The right time to start weaning: Guidelines promote exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of your child’s life, and a combination of breastfeeding and solids up until one year. Weaning can take place after that, or you can continue for as long you feel comfortable with it.
  • Health and change: Breastfeeding is comfort as well as nutrition, and it’s a good idea to start the weaning process when your child is feeling healthy and settled. Big changes like starting crèche, moving to a new house and new routines, or feeling unwell can make weaning more difficult.
  • What your baby wants: The most important factor in this process is your baby, and the best time to start weaning is when your little one shows interest in it by seeking out other foods/comfort, or can start drinking from a cup. Some children start this at a year or earlier, while others only start self-weaning as toddlers.
  • Mother-led weaning: If you’re unable to breastfeed your child through the day, you can start the weaning process yourself by slowly reducing the frequency of breastfeeding and introducing pumped breast milk or formula. The key is to do this very slowly at one feed a day and increase the bottle feeds over a few weeks.
  • Shortened nursing time: This is another good strategy where you can reduce breastfeeding time per session. For children over 6 months, you can follow a short breastfeeding session with a healthy, age-appropriate snack, formula or pumped breastmilk. It’s easier to start this strategy with daytime feeds and slowly move towards decreasing night feeds.
  • Postpone feeds: This strategy relies on your baby getting hungry enough that he or she will eat their food/have a bottle, but it’s important to time these just right. If they get too hungry, they’ll be frustrated and impatient, and mealtimes will be a struggle.

Peace of mind for you and your baby at our crèche near Parkmore

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving day care centre and crèche near Parkmore for your baby and toddler from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind – you can see for yourself right here! To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our play school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Reasons why your child can’t afford to miss out on play school in 2018
Reasons why your child can’t afford to miss out on play school in 2018

When we think of play school, many people focus on the idea that they’re a safe place for their child while parents are at work. While this is part of play school, the reality is that there’s so much more to it! Here are some insights into how play school benefits your child.

  • Socialisation: Social skills are a necessary part of daily life, and it’s essential for children to learn these skills at a young age. At play schools and day care centres, your little one will learn how to share toys, how to make friends, and interact respectfully with peers and adults. These social skills will serve your child well in later life, helping him or her to build strong, healthy relationships!
  • Exploring the world: For your child, home is their comfort zone – but learning to do new things in a new environment is a necessary step to growth and development. Starting off with a safe, fun environment like play school teaches your child a sense of confidence and capability as they learn to explore new skills, new places and new relationships. This will set a strong foundation for a healthy sense of self-confidence through their lifetime.
  • An academic boost: Play schools are not about teaching your child an academic curriculum, but they are about helping your child develop skills that they will need later in school. By having different set activities with different rules through the day, children learn how to manage a structured environment, and each activity helps support certain skills – for example, story time supports concentration and language skills, while drawing supports motor skills development. This makes it easier for your child to progress into more advanced academic environments.
  • Supports learning from parents: As parents, you’re your child’s most important role model, but it is a lot of work to handle! Play school helps support the lessons and development that parents teach at home, from potty training and self-feeding skills to manners and communication skills. This helps give children positive feedback from a variety of role models and makes learning easier.

Doodlebugs Play School near Hurlingham– Where learning is all about having fun!

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, educational day care centre and play school near Hurlingham for your baby and toddler from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care and holistic educational curriculum ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world in a safe and caring environment. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our nursery school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Where to find the best day care for your baby in 2018!
Where to find the best day care for your baby in 2018!

Choosing a day care is one of the first and most important decisions you can make for your child, and the right day care or crèche will play a critical role in helping your child reach those developmental milestones. Here are some tips for finding the perfect fit for you and your little one.

  • Helpful, experienced staff: The day care’s team will oversee your child’s wellbeing while you’re away, so it’s important that they have the training and experience to keep your child happy, healthy and developing well. This includes educational and early childhood development training as well as first aid and child care training.
  • A good atmosphere: The best childcare centres have an open-door policy with parents, making you feel welcome from the start. You should be able to view the centre on open days as well as by making a private booking, and be able to speak to everyone who would be involved in your child’s care. They should also have good lines of communication with parents, keeping you updated about what’s happening in your child’s development and at the centre itself.
  • A holistic curriculum: An incredible amount of learning happens in the first few years of a child’s life, and the right day care will have a curriculum in place that supports this development. It should include age-appropriate activities that focus on learning through fun, and staff should track your child’s development throughout to support different strengths and weaknesses.
  • A convenient location: Day care will become part of your daily routine, so it needs to work with your day-to-day activities. It should have a central location that is close to the route you take to and from work, offer holiday care, and be open for drop off and collection at convenient times.

Health, happiness and learning at our day care in Sandton!

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving day care in Sandton for your baby from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, affectionate staff, our professional child and day care centre ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our crèche and play school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

We answer the most popular questions asked by new parents!
We answer the most popular questions asked by new parents!

Here are some answers to some of the most common questions asked by new parents, from the team at our crèche near Parkmore.

Is my baby eating enough?

If you’re breastfeeding, it can be difficult to tell just how much food your little one is getting. And for formula-fed babies, the tin is simply a guideline. The best way to tell if your baby is eating enough is through regular weigh-ins that your paediatrician can schedule. They can also tell you how much weight your child should be putting on, what you can expect and give you advice on how to increase feeds.

How do I teach my baby to sleep at night?

Infants will wake up for feeds and nappy changes, but there ways to teach your child to sleep predominantly at night – being diurnal is something they have to actually learn! During the day, be energetic and upbeat, and go outdoors with your baby. At night time, lower the lights and choose calm, soothing activities like a gentle bath and lullaby. This will start teaching your baby what’s expected at different times of the day.

How can I bond with my baby?

Despite popular thinking, bonding doesn’t always happen instantly, and new parents shouldn’t worry. Take a slow and gradual approach to bonding with your little one and remember that you’re adjusting to a big change in your life, so don’t be hard on yourself. Some activities that can help the bonding process include breastfeeding, carrying your infant in a close-body carrier, spending time with your child in the calmer parts of the day, and even giving yourself a time-out to relax and re-energise.

What is the right age for starting crèche or day care?

If you ask this question, you’re going to get a lot of different answers, but if you are returning to work or want your child to attend day care, most specialists agree that it’s best to avoid crèche when your baby is less than 6 months old. The best advice we can give you is to choose a facility that specialises in your child’s age group, however, as they will have the training, equipment and expertise to give your child the right support – and to give you peace of mind.

Meet our talented, loving team at our crèche near Parkmore

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving day care centre and crèche near Parkmore for your baby and toddler from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind – you can see for yourself right here! To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our play school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Imaginary friends: Worrisome or wonderful?
Imaginary friends: Worrisome or wonderful?

Have you ever heard your child chattering away into thin air? Or have they spoken to you about games they play with a companion that doesn’t exist? Your child has an imaginary friend! While many parents become concerned about these creatures, characters and confidants, the reality is that imaginary friends are a healthy part of early childhood development. In fact, they can boost the development of many essential skills! Here’s some more information on these fantasy friends, from our play school near Hurlingham.

How common are imaginary friends?

Most children act out their imagination by creating games and events with their toys, stuffed animals and dress up clothes, but almost 37% of children take this a step further by creating a fantasy friend. These can be human, animal or a creative mixture of both, and can be present singularly or in groups. These friends are often incredibly detailed and vivid when described, from how they look and how they behave to rules they follow (they only like juice or turn purple in the sunlight or you have to sing a certain song to invite them over).

Why do children invent them?

Contrary to popular belief, research has shown that children with imaginary friends are not necessarily more lonely or isolated than other children. In fact, these children often have better social skills than children who do not have them. Occasionally, they can appear after a traumatic event, like the loss of a parent, and psychologists say that they are a very helpful coping mechanism in those cases.

What are the benefits?

Studies have shown that children with imaginary friends are usually:

  • More sociable and have better social skills
  • Have high levels of creative thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Have stronger language skills and are able to articulate their thoughts better
  • Have better self-esteem

Come play and learn at our play school near Hurlingham

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, educational day care centre and play school near Hurlingham for your baby and toddler from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care and holistic educational curriculum ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world in a safe and caring environment. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our nursery school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

How to teach your child all about self-control
How to teach your child all about self-control

One of the important parts of early childhood development is learning self-control. Children are impulsive by nature, but life is all about taking those impulsive urges and channelling them into the self-discipline they need to become productive, balanced and happy individuals. Self-control isn’t about willpower or even restraining their lively spirits – it’s about teaching them the tools they need to make situations work to their advantage, to help them reach their goals. Here are some tips for teaching your child how to properly exercise self-control, from our nursery school in Sandton.

  • Age-appropriate learning: Brain development determines when your child has the ability to start learning to control their impulses. The part of the brain responsible for these behaviours, the prefrontal cortex, develops slowly from 6 months old and only reaches maturity in your child’s mid-20s. This means that you can only expect to start teaching self-control through the toddler stages, and that a lot of patience is needed to stimulate these neural pathways and develop these skills.
  • Develop trust: Young children start developing their self-control when they can trust that it will be rewarded. For example, asking your little one to sit on a chair and wait while you fetch the food they want is rewarded when you hold up your side of the bargain – bringing the food. Trust like this soothes anxiety and impatience, allowing your child to develop the skills to wait patiently because they know that this is how they will get what they want, and each time it happens, this behaviour is reinforced.
  • Being a role model: Parents are the primary role models for kids, so we have to keep a close eye on our own behaviours to ensure that our kids are learning good skills from us. For example, when we react angrily or personally to challenging behaviour, we are teaching them that this is the right way to react. It takes a lot of effort, especially when it’s been a rough day, but taking a deep breath and regulating your own emotional responses will pay off in the long-term, as your child will start to copy your self-control.
  • Repetition: This is the primary way that children learn, and it applies just as much to learning self-control as it does to learning to clap hands, sing a song or speak. Every time the skills are repeated and copied by your child, it strengthens the neural pathways in their brain responsible for learning in this area – and the more often you do it, the stronger and more resilient they get.

Age-appropriate, holistic learning at our nursery school in Sandton

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving play school in Sandton for your baby from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, affectionate staff, our professional child and day care centre ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our nursery school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

How to Support Your Baby’s Language Skills Development
How to Support Your Baby’s Language Skills Development

Parents play one of the most critical roles in helping a child’s language development. With the right support, your little one can make significant advances in this area, such as:

  • A wider vocabulary,
  • Better grammar, and
  • More advanced communication skills.

Here are tips on how to best support this learning, from our day care near Hurlingham:

  • Talk:
  • Children primarily learn by listening to you talk. So, it’s important to make this part of your daily routine. Luckily, they aren’t fussy about what you want to talk about! You can talk to them about the food they’re eating, their bath time… even talk to them about whatever it is that you’re doing, as you’re doing it. You’ll be amazed at what they pick up!

  • Tell stories:
  • Making up fanciful stories is an entertaining way to help stimulate your child’s imagination and language skills. Pick something that focusses on your child’s interests and isn’t too scary. Let them ask lots of questions about what happens next and who the characters are. And have fun!

  • Music:
  • Singing along to songs is lots of fun – adding music and movement are a great way to add another dimension! You can find lots of songs online and in kids’ stores that are interesting and appropriate to your child’s age., Look for ones that teach all sorts of useful things like how to brush teeth, play new games or make new friends!

  • Correct, don’t criticise:
  • Getting grammar or words incorrect is a natural part of the learning process, but correcting it properly is important. Rather than telling your child that they are wrong, repeat what they said back to them with the correct word or grammar and ask them to repeat it to you correctly.

  • New experiences:
  • Exploring the world is key to language development, so add lots of variety into your child’s daily experiences. Parks, play dates, new activities and day trips all help your child discover new things to talk about, learn about and get interested in.

Help your child grow and learn at our day care near Hurlingham

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, educational day care centre and play school near Hurlingham for your baby and toddler from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care and holistic educational curriculum ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world in a safe and caring environment. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our playschool, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Tips for building your child’s confidence
Tips for building your child’s confidence

A healthy sense of confidence and strong self-esteem is essential for living a life of mental health and becoming an active, positive member of society, so it’s no surprise that this is such an important part of childhood development. Here is some helpful advice from our nursery school near Craighall to help build these traits.

  • Love and affection: It might sound obvious, but expressing your love and affection for your child is a great foundation for their self-worth. Holding your baby, hugging your child, and telling them you love them all reinforce the relationship of unconditional love that they need to build a confident foundation.
  • Meaningful praise: Praise is very important for building confidence, but don’t praise something unless it is deserved. It’s just as important to give positive feedback on achievements as it is to gently and kindly teach your child that it’s okay not to be the best at everything. This encourages them to develop the drive to put practice and effort into developing their own skills and valuing hard work.
  • Encourage independence: It’s instinctive to want to rush in and save our children from every single thing, but this can make your child fearful and scared of failure. A good way to help develop independence and a sense of adventure is to set your child up in a safe environment where they can make decisions on their own. For example, making sandwiches together for lunch, trying new foods, or exploring a child-friendly park while you watch from a safe distance.
  • Be consistent: Rules and boundaries are an important part of raising a child and, when they know what is expected of them, they feel confident in what they are and are not allowed to do. These rules change from family to family, and should change as your child grows, but as long as they are applied consistently your child will feel secure.
  • Be a good role model: Parents are the most influential role models for children, and they will try and mimic what they see in you. Focusing on body positivity, believing in yourself, rewarding yourself for achievements and practicing on yourself what you are trying to teach your children will help them develop that confidence in themselves.

Teaching confidence and self-esteem in a fun, loving nursery school near Craighall

At Doodlebugs Play School near Craighall, we know that this is a critical time of learning and development for your little one and we aim to support it through a holistic curriculum that teaches through fun, safe and age-appropriate activities. With plenty of peers to play with, extensively trained crèche and professional child care staff members to oversee all activities and a fun, childproof environment, we’re looking forward to bringing out the best in your child.

For more information on our daily routine or to visit our day care centre, please contact us today. We look forward to meeting you and having your child join our family!

How to help your single child become a social superhero
How to help your single child become a social superhero

Building social skills is an essential part of early childhood education that teaches them how to seek and develop relationships with peers, teachers and other people around them. Every child develops at a different pace, but there are some things we can do to help guide children in this area. Here are some tips from our play school in Sandton.

Developmental milestones for social skills in children

In order to recognise if your child is struggling or not, it’s important to know how their social skills should be developing. Generally, 2-3 year old children can seek attention from those around them, and initiate it through verbal or physical interaction. For example, saying “Hello” or bringing a toy over to play with. They usually look at the person who is speaking, take turns talking and respond to interactions appropriately, like laughing at something silly.

3-4 year olds are a bit more advanced in this area, able to take turns in games, play-act with toys in an imaginative way as though they are alive, and use more words to explain what they want from another person.

Play dates are essential for social skills development

Having the time and space to play with another child is one of the best ways to supervise and encourage socialisation, especially if they don’t have siblings. This should be used as an opportunity to teach manners, to take turns and share with others. The key is to make it a calm but positive event, and to start with short play dates at a time of day when your child is alert and rested. Talk through the play date with your child, explaining what is going to happen and how fun it will be. You can set out an activity that both children will enjoy, and keep an eye on their interactions together.

Any minor setbacks like not wanting to share or grabbing something out of the other child’s hands should be treated as a learning opportunity where you can gently explain the right thing to do. This is a good way to teach empathy (for example, asking your child how he or she would feel if the play dough was snatched out of their hands), social overtures (for example, how to ask mom for something without interrupting), and taking turns (for example, waiting until their friend has finished with their biscuit before resuming play time).

Our play school in Sandton helps your child reach important milestones

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving day care centre and nursery school environment in Sandton for your baby from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, loving staff, our professional child care ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our nursery school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

A new mom’s guide to tummy time
A new mom’s guide to tummy time

If you’ve just had your first child, you’ve probably seen a lot of references to “tummy time” but you may not have had a chance to find out what it’s all about and why it’s so important for your baby’s growth and development. Here’s a quick guide from our crèche in Sandton.

What is tummy time?

This is time that your baby should spend on his or her tummy while awake and supervised. Place a blanket or mat on a firm, flat surface like the floor or on your stomach, chest or lap. Then encourage your child to try lift their head and shoulders up. Favourite toys are very useful for giving them something to focus on, and many parents have lots of success when lying down with their babies and encouraging them to copy your actions.

Why is tummy time important?

Babies spend lots of time on their backs, especially when sleeping, so it’s important to change this position to help strengthen neck, back and shoulder muscles. This also helps your child reach important milestones such as sitting, crawling and walking, as well as helping to develop various motor skills. The tummy time position is the starting point from which your child will learn to roll over and support themselves on their arms.

When is the right time to start tummy time?

Tummy time can start as soon as your little one arrives home as long as they are healthy and were born at full term. It’s important to only play in this position when your baby is alert and awake, and to make sure that he or she is on a smooth, flat surface to ensure breathing isn’t obstructed or uncomfortable. Start with short sessions of only a couple of minutes and work up to longer sessions as your baby gets stronger. By 3-4 months, you should be able to do around 20-30 minutes of tummy time.

Find a crèche in Sandton that supports your baby’s growth and development

At Doodlebugs Play School, we offer a safe, loving play school in Sandton for your baby from 18 months to 4 years old. Fully supervised by our qualified, affectionate staff, our professional child and day care centre ensures that your little one will have fun, learn and explore the world while giving you complete peace of mind. To find out more about our daily routine or to visit our nursery school, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.