Saturday, October 8, 2011

Things To Do In Sydney With Kids - Top 7 Playgrounds

If you are wondering what things to do in Sydney with kids this weekend, then why not plan a trip to a new playground you haven't been to before. Your children will be excited to explore new places and you can sit back, relax and maybe even enjoy a quiet coffee.

The following are some of Sydney's best playgrounds, as they offer plenty of stimulation for the children, but also all the comforts and amenities for the parents.

Clontarf Reserve Playground Sandy Bay Road, Clontarf

Clontarf Reserve is located on Sydney's northern beaches and a great place to visit for the whole family. The playground is shaded and is suitable for kids 0-12 years of age. For the parents, there is a kiosk, which serves hot food as well as ice cream, cakes and coffee,. The park has plenty of seating and free BBQs as well as a bubbler and showers. In summer it is ideal for swimming for even young children as there are now waves and at low tide shallow water.

Flying Fox (Winnererremy Bay) Playground Mona Street, Mona Vale

This excellent playground has recently been upgraded with new play equipment. It is suitable for kids of all ages and includes an adventure trail with stone carvings of sea creatures, flying fox, space net, snakes and ladders and spring rockers and many others. Flying Fox Café is located right next to the enclosed playground so parents can keep an eye on the kids. Free BBQs and shaded tables are also nearby as is a great bike/scooter track. Children will also enjoy seeing pelicans wandering nearby.

Bicentennial Park Playground Australia Avenue, Homebush

Sunday, February 6, 2011

A Better Way To Homeschool Choosing Curriculum

After deciding to homeschool their children, many parents panic at the thought of choosing the "right" curriculum to use. This is understandable as parents take the responsibility to educate their kids out of the hands of the public school system. How can the parents be sure that they are making the correct decisions?

When I first began schooling my own kids I heard many moms and educators assure me that it was not the curriculum that would make or break my child's education. The truth is, with the right attitude toward learning, a homeschool child can excel far beyond the constraints of any "curriculum". Attitude is everything. Character is paramount. If the child becomes a brilliant student who aces every test and standard set before them, yet cannot communicate compassionately with the world around them. What good would that be?

I would rather invest heavily in the training of "how to learn" with my own kids than "what to learn" any day. A Child that learns to become an independent, self-motivated, compassionate learner would be my primary goal. So what about curriculum?

The primary goal you as a homeschooler need to set is your standard's for success. In my own family, we have 4 basic goals that would define our mission statement as homeschoolers. Keep in mind that these are different for each homeschooling family.

    Our faith is the most important thing we can pass on to our Children. As Christian parents, we include the Lord in everything we do.
    Math facts need to become reflexive. A child cannot hope to thrive mathematically if they do not have those basic facts memorized.
    Children need to devour books and great literature. This is key to becoming an excellent communicator; both on paper and in front of others. Nothing exposes children to vocabulary and culture like great novels.
    Children need lots and lots of practice perfecting the art of writing and communicating. There is no way around this one. To become a great writer, one must write a lot.