Tag Archives: childcare

Camp Au Pair – Art Experiences

This week’s Camp Au Pair theme is Art Experiences.

Crafts, recipes, activities, and games related to art can all be found here on the Camp Au Pair – Art Experiences pinboard.

Field Trips can be a great way for kids to learn and have new experiences. Get permission from your host parents before any outings and be sure to take all social distancing precautions. Some museums are requiring advanced tickets or have reduced hours due to the pandemic.

  • Art Museums
  • Paint Your Own Pottery Studio
  • Clay and Ceramics Studio

Online Art FunHere is a great website with lots of art activities including ones for older kids.

Webcams – You can do a google search for art websites with webcams. Here are a few to get you started:

Pottery & Ceramics webcam
Glass Blowing webcam

Videos – Look for fun videos on YouTube about drawing and all kinds of art.

Books – Stop by your local library and look for books on famous artists and art.

Check YouTube for books on art being read aloud:

Image: teachkidsart.com

Camp Au Pair – Dinosaurs

This week’s Camp Au Pair theme is Dinosaurs.

Crafts, recipes, activities, and games related to dinosaurs can all be found here on the Camp Au Pair – Dinosaurs pinboard.

Field Trips can be a great way for kids to learn and have new experiences. Get permission from your host parents before any outings and be sure to take all social distancing precautions.

Here are a few places to go that fit this theme:

    • Children’s museum with dinosaur exhibit
    • Natural history museum
    • Nature center with fossils

Toys – Many kids have dinosaur toys already. See what your kids have and think of fun, new ways you can play with these toys with them. Imagine taking a plastic dinosaur and making footprints in play dough to form your own fossils.

Webcam – This NPS Paleontology Lab offers a webcam where you can watch paleontologists remove rock from around fossils. The cam is normally working 9 am-5 pm PST, so 12-8 pm our time.

Videos – Look for fun videos on YouTube about dinosaurs and fossils. Here are a few to get you started.

Movies – The Good Dinosaur, Land Before Time, and Ice Age are all great family movies that fit with this theme. For older kids, consider movies like Journey to the Center of the Earth and Jurassic Park (which is rated PG-13).

Books – Check your kids’ bookshelf for books on dinosaurs.

Photo: krojotak.com

Three Ways for Au Pairs to Stay Red Cross Ready

Being knowledgeable in basic first aid and CPR is important for au pairs (and anyone else caring for children). Au Pair in America’s commitment to infant/child safety begins before au pairs arrive to the U.S., with pre-arrival training and continue throughout the au pair year.

#1 Training At Orientation

Our orientation includes seminars by American Red Cross instructors who provide hands-on demonstrations in infant/child CPR and safety. Printed materials are provided that reinforce the safety information and can be used to review from time to time.

#2 Enroll in a Red Cross Certification Class

After settling into their host community, all au pairs are encouraged to complete an Infant/Child CPR and First Aid certification program. Au Pair in America will pay for this training through the American Red Cross.

Classes are available through the Red Cross. Au Pair in America will pay for the cost of a class providing an au pair has at least six months left on her visa and is taking one of several approved childcare/child safety-related classes, such as Adult and Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED. Au pairs should check with their community counselor and host family before signing up. Au Pair in America will register the au pair directly.

To locate a class, visit www.redcross.org/takeaclass. For step-by-step instructions on how to locate a class and have Au Pair in America complete enrollment, click here.

#3 Stay Current on Safety Information

The Official American Red Cross First Aid app puts expert advice for everyday emergencies in your hand. Available for iPhone and Android devices, this app gives you instant access to the information you need to know to handle the most common first aid emergencies. With videos, interactive quizzes and simple step-by-step advice, it’s never been easier to know first aid. Download the app for free from the American Red Cross website or in your app store.

Photos: Robin Leon

Back to School Planning

Back to school time is here. This can mean changes to the au pair schedule and possibly to the duties.  It is very important to communicate these changes to avoid problems.

Here is a list of topics to consider discussing:

  • Au pair’s work schedule
  • The children’s school and activity schedules
  • Where the children get dropped off and picked up and who will be doing this
  • What to do if a child is staying home sick, late to school, does not get off the bus (if they are supposed to)
  • Driving laws regarding stopping for school buses
  • How to tell if school has been canceled or delayed for bad weather
  • Add the au pair to your list of people allowed to pick up the kids from school and explain the process
  • What to pack for lunch
  • The routine after school (do they have free time before starting homework, what to give for a snack, any chores, where do they put their backpacks & lunchboxes)
  • How to communicate about what’s going on at school. Your Kids in Care logbook from Au Pair in America can be a great two-way communication tool for keeping track of schedules, afterschool activities and day to day info that needs to be transferred between host parents and au pair.
  • If your au pair will be the one going through the children’s backpack and helping with homework, consider designating an area for putting things that need to be read and/or signed by parents.

Here are some Printable Fill-in-the-Blank School Notes for parents. You can print these out and have them ready for times when the kids are absent, late, have an early dismissal or you need to give permission for something.

Check out Au Pair in America’s Pinterest School Tips and Ideas pinboard for things like organization ideas, back to school traditions, printable lunch box notes, and fun lunch recipes.

 

Cultural Fair ~ Au Pair in America May 1st

german-aupairJoin Au Pair in America for a Trip Around the World! Sunday, May 1, 2016 | 1–4pm at the Nationals Park, Norfolk Southern Club 1500 South Capitol Street, SE | Washington, DC
Help us celebrate 30 years of Au Pair in America and the U.S. Department of State’s au pair program! You’re invited to a fun afternoon of educational country displays, performances by au pairs, a photo op, face painting, and other fun activities for children. Au Pair in America staff, host families and au pairs from over 30 countries will be in attendance. Come learn about the au pair program and enjoy a fun and educational afternoon! To learn more click on this link and RSVP if interested in attending:  http://www.aupairinamerica.com/culturalfair/.  #‎aupairnats‬

Valentine’s Day

Valentines DayValentine’s day is celebrated in the United States every year on February 14th. There are many stories and legends behind who the real St. Valentine was, but most scholars agree that he was a martyr who was killed by Roman soldiers because he was marrying people in secret at a time when marriage was outlawed.  Later in the Middle Ages, a great writer named Geoffrey Chaucer wrote a poem as a present to King Richard II, who was going to be married soon. In it, he mentioned St. Valentine, and over time, the idea of Valentine’s Day became associated with the idea of love.

During the Victorian times (in the 1800s), Valentine’s Day became extremely popular! Men and women spent a lot of time making beautiful Valentine’s cards with ribbon, fancy paper and even lace. In those days, people were very reserved and they did not often say what they were feeling. Valentine’s day gave them a way to express their feelings to someone they were in love with anonymously.  The sender would remain a mystery until they could speak more freely.

In the last few decades, Valentine’s day has changed a lot! Today we still exchange cards, but many people buy ready-made cards instead. We also give flowers or chocolates as a gift to remind people of our friendship and love for them. Most Valentine’s gifts and cards make use of the colors red and pink, and are decorated with images of hearts or roses. Another common symbol of love on this day is Cupid, the Roman god of love. He is usually shown as a little angel with a bow and arrow. According to legend, anyone who is struck by his arrows will fall in love.

Here are some links with ideas about how you can celebrate and have fun with the children you care for over the next couple of weeks!

Valentine’s Day Cards, coloring pages, recipes, crafts, games and puzzles

Valentine’s Day PInterest

Childcare with a Cultural Flare ~ Simplify your Life!

DSC_0143If interested in learning more about hosting an au pair in your home to see if this would meet your childcare needs please stop by my Au Pair in America table at The Festival on the Green at the Crofton Country Club located at 1691 Crofton Parkway between the hours of 10am and 4pm on September 26th. I will have au pairs on hand to answer any of your questions. If you are not in the market please feel free to let others know that may be! Have a great weekend. For more information about us visit our website at www.aupairinamerica.com.

Au Pairs meet at the GoKarts in Crofton

DSC_0362Go Kart racing has been a popular pastime for about 50 years in the U.S. and has been the first step for many drivers who eventually go on to professional racing in NASCAR, Formula 1 and the Indy Racing League.  And there are some women’s names in the professional racing world too, such as Danica Patrick and Sarah Fisher.  While we may not have been thinking about such high aspirations when we joined together for a couple of hours of fun this past Sunday at Crofton Go-Karts, we surely exhibited the adventurous spirit Au Pairing bring out in person!

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Fifty-two Au Pairs Enjoy an America favorite ~ An Oriole Baseball Game in Baltimore

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On May 16, 2015, au pairs from the Baltimore, Columbia and Annapolis clusters came together to see the Orioles play baseball at Oriole Park at Camden Yards Stadium in downtown Baltimore. In total 52 au pairs came out to enjoy the day and to experience one of America’s favorite forms of entertainment!  So many countries from around the globe were represented we lost track.  While the sun was shining and the weather was very hot the Orioles pulled off a win against the Los Angeles Angels!

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