by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Reflections Magazine : Issue 56 Spring 2014
REFLECTIONS • GOWRIE AUSTRALIA • SPRING 2014 - ISSUE 56 17 The results of the 2012 AEDC indicated that there are high numbers of children in the suburbs surrounding Karawara, Perth who are developmentally vulnerable in two or more of the AEDC developmental domains. In addition, the SEIFA index (Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas) for these suburbs registers as 'high', signifying a population with large numbers of families from disadvantaged backgrounds. Both the AEDC and the SEIFA data highlight a need to offer particular support to families and children in these suburbs, and past initiatives have shown that appropriate programs will have a significant, long-term impact on children's health, wellbeing and development. Acting on this information Communicare Inc., a not-for-profit organisation, in partnership with Medicare Local, has designed and is delivering ten Parents and Babies Groups in the South-East Metropolitan Perth suburbs. The participants are local families, parents and children (from birth to 18 months) and their siblings (below school age). Each Parent and Baby Group session is delivered for two hours per week, 48 weeks of the year with each session supporting parents to interact with other families and engage with their children in developmentally appropriate play experiences. In addition, based on the needs and interests of the parents, a range of parenting issues are discussed and special topics are explored during the sessions. These topics may include: • health including immunisation, breast feeding, nutrition etc. • attachment • sleep routines • early brain development • Australian Early Development Census • the value of play • promoting early literacy and numeracy • language and communication • budgeting Some feedback from the program One of the Parents and Babies Group sessions at Karawara included a toy-making workshop. With the participants keen to be involved in a creative activity, the facilitators designed a workshop with benefits for both parents and children and with an added twist -- a toy-making workshop with toys to be made from everyday recycled products. Sensory bottles, beans bags, rattles and fine motor toys were made from water bottles, empty containers, ribbon and wrapping paper. Besides providing an opportunity for participants to express themselves creatively, participants also learnt about the benefits of play for their children. The simple, non-commercial toys provided opportunities for children to practise and master skills. The non-directed play showed participants that it is okay for children to explore without any particular goal in sight, and that free play supports children to develop self-concepts and promotes self-esteem. Facilitators were able to talk about the many other benefits of play including the development of sensory awareness, social and pro-social skills, cognitive skills, physical skills, expressive and receptive language, imagination and creativity. Feedback from the workshop The workshop, which helped to bring the group closer together, was met with enthusiasm from the participants. Feedback included: I really enjoyed the toy-making workshop. It had been a while since I have done anything creative (which I love) so it definitely got me inspired to start again. Since the workshop I have been keeping empty containers and tins, its amazing what you can create with some tape, ribbon and just simple household items. Definitely more affordable and entertaining for my child and the good feeling I have made it for them too! I have little time for crafts at home so it was nice to have the opportunity to be creative. We all left with a toy and I gained confidence about my ability to create crafts. It is easy to make toys from recycled items -- what a great way to find another use and save the environment! As this workshop was such a success it was repeated at the Bentley Parents and Babies Group and the Cannington Parents and Babies Group. The latter group in particular includes a number of families who speak English as their second language. Through this toy-making activity all the participants were able to share their interests, regardless of their culture and language. Communicare believes that activities like this toy-making workshop help to reduce barriers, build confidence and strengthen relationships. " " " " " " " "
Reflections Issue 57 Summer 2014
Reflections Magazine Issue 55 Winter 2014