Kids Can Thrive in the Arts
Math, science and reading can be difficult for some children, especially those who suffer from learning disabilities such as dyslexia, dyscalculia or attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. But there are disciplines where they can succeed and even surpass their peers with the right guidance and instruction, and those include the arts.
Unfortunately, schools across the nation have cut funding for these activities. They’re often deemed non-essential for growing up and finding a job, and that’s a shame. The arts have so many mental health benefits to offer because they aid in cognitive development and provide valuable self-confidence. It may be up to you to get your children involved, so here are some suggestions.
Set Up a Home Studio
Imagine a small corner of the house complete with a table, a chair, and a variety of supplies. Think pencils, pipe cleaners, and paints. Wouldn’t you have loved that when you were a child? You now have the power to make it a reality for your own child. Choose an area that has good natural lighting that you don’t mind getting a little dirty. Messes are inevitable! Most importantly, set aside time each week to use the space for different arts and crafts. From paper bag puppets to homemade decorations to painted masterpieces, each activity will help your child develop patience and new skills.
Play Around With Clay
This should definitely be one of the supplies that you keep stocked in your studio. Chances are your child would love the feel of wet clay slipping through their fingers, and the next logical step is fashioning vessels from it. According to the Good Dirt LA pottery studio, this ancient art allows youngsters to blow off some steam while expressing their creativity. In fact, the studio doesn’t allow parents to be present during their kids’ classes so they don’t feel inhibited.
See a Symphony Together
Besides the works of masters including Mozart, Beethoven and Debussy, your child will also hear a variety of instruments they’re never been exposed to listening to the radio. This is likely to pique their interest in the cello, flute or even tuba, after which you only need to find a tutor to give them lessons a few times a week. Those will pay off in far more than talent because playing music has been linked to cognitive development and increased memory in a number of studies, say the art experts at Budsies.
Visit a Dance Studio
Children are already naturals at rhythmic movement if you’ve ever observed them stepping, clapping, swaying and spinning to no music at all in almost any open space they find. When you take them to a dance studio, their eyes will light up. Though it’s common to take little girls to ballet lessons, boys are allowed to dance too! There are a wide variety of other styles to choose from including jazz, hip-hop and aerobic. Let them watch, try and choose for themselves.
Check Out the Streets
The city is alive with art if you know when and where to look, and it’s not always what you expect. Though they’ve been around for ages, the Vancouver Art Gallery is a great place to tour different exhibitions that have throughout the year.
Learn Knitting Together
This skill has been passed on from mother to child from time immemorial, and there’s no reason that should change. If you don’t know how, now’s the time to learn together with your daughter or son, as more and more men and boys are also finding joy in knitting. You could ask a friend or relative to introduce you to the basics or go online for an introduction. You’ll discover for yourself the therapeutic benefits of this art from, as will your child.
Take these steps, and you’ll open an entire world of joy and fulfillment to your child in which their learning disability means nothing. It could be the greatest gift you ever give them, so don’t wait another day.
Image via Pixabay.
The school years are hard enough for a child, but factor in a reading disorder and things become all the more complicated. According to the Vancouver Sun, approximately one in five people struggle with reading. Problems with decoding (dyslexia and visual impairment), poor comprehension (possibly stemming from ADD or ADHD), and speed (such as slow processing) are common issues. Unfortunately, the inability to read can affect a student's capacity to learn across other subjects since cognizance is key. As a parent, it's important to keep your cool in order to be a solid support system for your child. Here are some tactics to help you do just that.
Collaborate with Educators
It's important to be on the same page with your child's educators, so make it a point to communicate any setbacks, progress, and general concerns. Ask if you can sit in on a class to see how your child reacts in a learning environment. Work together to identify your child's strengths and interests and draw from those points to improve their skills. Acknowledge emotional reactions that come with the frustration of learning and develop a strategy to help your child cope with any problems. Establish a short- and long-term plan for what can be done to help your kid both in and out of the classroom.
Create a Designated Reading Area
Encourage motivation for your child to read at home by creating a designated reading nook. Make sure the space has ample lighting, is comfortable and quiet, provides privacy, and has enough storage to stow away books and other materials. Natural light is best, but you'll still want to have a reliable fixture for when the sun sets. Make it cozier by hanging a string of LED lights. Implement a relaxing seating area, whether that means a bean bag chair and throw pillows, a recliner, cushions on the floor, or a loveseat. If you can't designate a separate room, set up some folding screens or a hanging curtain to section off an area. Along with bookshelves, store reading material in creative spaces such as a chest that doubles as a table. Ask your child for their input so they can make the area feel like their own.
Look Beyond the Book
Books aren't the only way kids can improve their reading skills. There are also several great websites that help with visualization, summarizing, tone, phonemic awareness, comprehension, and other literacy skills. Turn fun activities such as cooking, drawing, and storytelling into an educational learning experience for your child. Adding variety to your to their routine can help keep them motivated to learn.
Wonder of Learning offers developmentally delayed children an opportunity to advance through play-based tutoring and customized education. Whether a cooking, dance, or piano class, WOLO’s teachers are specially trained to tailor each child’s learning experience their needs and learning style.
Consider Assistive Technology
Assistive technology (AT) is a device, piece of equipment, or system that compensates for a specific learning disability — like audiobooks, for example. These tools can help with decoding, fluency, and comprehension. However, AT does not replace corrective instruction such as using a software to improve poor phonic skills. The goal is to increase a child's sense of independence while helping them in a school environment.
While it's fine to take advice from others, do your own research when it comes to determining which tools your child needs by staying on top of new developments, therapies, and educational techniques. Even though you may be as frustrated as your child on some days, it's important to remember that a learning disability isn't impassable. If you show signs of discouragement, your child will pick up on that, so it's crucial that you're not letting tests, homework, and school bureaucracy from giving your child the emotional and moral support he/she needs to succeed.
Photo Credit: Pixabay
Image courtesy of Pixabay
I dreamed all my life about becoming a mom, but when actually faced with parenthood, I was terrified. When you’re a parent with a disability, meeting your unique challenges is a daunting proposition. However with some thoughtful preparations, I found you can navigate your journey the same as everyone else—one day at a time.
Safety first. One of the preparations that gave me peace was preparing my home for my baby. It’s one thing to live with a disability, but once you’re dealing with feedings and diaper changes, exhausted and frazzled from too little sleep, you want all the advantages you can find. By making home modifications for better accessibility, I improved my navigation and eased some of my burden. Besides, knowing my home would support my parenting challenges made me feel more confident. Here are some of the basics which I think are especially helpful.
Bathroom. Bathrooms can be dangerous with the combination of slippery surfaces, soap, and water. Adding non-slip flooring is a big help, along with grab bars and lever-style faucet handles. Raised toilet seats can improve accessibility, along with replacing the tub with a shower. If you use a wheelchair, you also might like removing your vanity and replacing the sink with a wall-mounted option. Another suggestion is to install anti-scald devices on your faucets to prevent the water from becoming too hot.
Main living areas. Loose carpeting is a tripping and slipping hazard, and if you use a wheelchair, it can catch in the wheels. Make sure it’s secure or remove it. Also, consider replacing your door knobs with lever-style handles. Door knobs can be difficult for a wheelchair-bound person to turn, but a lever you can easily push them down. Some professionals also suggest installing child-proof latches on cupboards and outlet covers. Another important consideration is to secure your television so your baby can’t topple it, along with other large furniture items such as bookshelves and cabinets. If your furniture, fireplace, or walls have sharp corners, install padding so your little one doesn’t get hurt on them. Invest in some child gates to keep your youngster corralled; even though your baby won’t be mobile right away, that day will be here before you know it!
Kitchen. Chances are when you’re working in the kitchen, you’ll be distracted, and
hot objects can quickly become dangerous to babies, so the kitchen is another important area to prepare. Even with child-proof locks, you will want to take extra precautions for certain items. Parents recommends organizing your drawers and cabinets so that choking and suffocation hazards like plastic bags and spices are well out of reach, and putting poisons and chemicals in secure areas.
Other ideas. There are other steps I took to prepare for my baby’s arrival which gave me great peace of mind. One of the best things I did was take the advice of Healthy Children, and I found a wonderful pediatrician ahead of time. Another idea is to create a laminated list of your emergency phone numbers; include the area hospitals, emergency services, and your family and friends that you or a babysitter may need to connect with should an issue arise. And lastly, my other wonderful discovery is Wonder of Learning. Wonder of Learning, or WOLO, is essentially a one-stop shop for your child's leisure activities, so it offers needed convenience for families strapped for time.
Prepared and confident. You’ll enjoy great peace of mind by making some simple arrangements before your baby arrives. Ensure your home is safe and accessible, and plan out a handful of simple but important resources. Once your little one arrives, you’ll realize how much these steps helped with preparing for parenthood!
You won't find this type of camp anywhere else!
What are the weekly camp themes?
During these camps, kids will also have the opportunity to participate in...
What is special about WOLO Summer Enrichment Camps?
Sibling discounts, please inquire. Limited spacing. Taxes not included.
Please call 604-829-1346 or email email@example.com to inquire about pricing and availability for #5 & #6.
We are super EXCITED to offer you another term of AMAZING classes! Classes that you won't find at another centre and programs your child would love. Our teachers not only LOVE teaching, they SPECIALIZE in what they have to offer.
Most programs start on the week of April 3rd! Programs for children start as low as $46/month. All programs can be registered in person, over the phone, or online. You can conveniently book at home and at your time for not only programs listed below but also for drop-in child care, flexible preschool prep, kindergarten prep, private music lessons, and more!
>>>>>For online registration click here! You will be taken to a new web portal called WellnessLiving that we use for our booking system.
Spring 2018 Program Guide Breakdown
To read more about each individual program, please visit our programs page for more info!
- 10:00am-11:15am: WOLO Playgroup (0-24 mos)
- 4:15pm-5:00pm: Kids Yoga (6-12 yrs)*
- 10:25am-10:55am: Young Piano Maestros (4.5-6 yrs)
- 10:55am-11:25am: Young Piano Maestros (4.5-6 yrs)
- 11:00am-11:50am: Mini Pianists & Artists (3-5 yrs)
- 4:15pm-5:00pm: Afterschool Hip Hop (6-12 yrs)*
- 5:00pm-5:45pm: Jazz/Contemporary Dance (6-12 yrs)*
- 9:30am-10:30am: Tot Playlab (14-26 mos)
- 11:00am-12:00pm: Baby Playlab (6-13 mos)
- 11:05am-11:45am: Sing Play Doodle (2-5 yrs)
- 4:15pm-5:00pm: Afternoon Art (5-12 yrs)*
- 9:30am-10:25am: Young Group Piano Lessons (4-5 yrs)
- 10:30am-11:25am: Young Group Piano Lessons (4-5 yrs)
- 10:45am-11:45am: Reggio Art Time (3-5 yrs)
- 11:30am-12:25pm: Young Group Piano Lessons (4-5 yrs)
- 3:25pm-3:55pm: Young Piano Maestros (4.5-6 yrs)
- 4:00pm-4:30pm: Young Piano Maestros (4.5-6 yrs)
- 4:15pm-5:15pm: Kids Cooking Healthy (5-12 yrs)*
- 1:00pm-2:00pm: IAIM Infant Massage (1wk-12 mos)
- 4:15pm-4:45pm: Piano Maestros (6-12 yrs)
- 4:45pm-5:15pm: Piano Maestros (6-12 yrs)
- 9:00am-12:00pm: Saturday Drop-Off (2-5 yrs)
- 9:15am-10:00am: Preschool Dance (2.5-4 yrs)
- 9:00am-9:45am: Sunrise (Music For Young Children) (2.5-3.5 yrs)
- 10:00am-10:45am: Ballet (4-6 yrs)
- 10:55am-11:55am: Beginner's Cantonese Class (3-5 yrs)
- 11:00am-12:00pm: Reggio Art Time (3-5 yrs)
- 11:45am-12:45pm: "Mr. Learnie" Lego & Math (5-8 yrs)
- 1:30pm-2:30pm: Glee Club (6-12 yrs)
- 2:30pm-3:30pm: Ukulele Club (6-10 yrs)
- 3:30pm-4:30pm: Adult Guitar Group Lessons
- 3:30pm-4:30pm: Adult Group Piano Lessons
- 9:00am-9:55am: Mandarin Minis (3-5 yrs)
MONDAY to FRIDAY
- 3:30pm-6:00pm: WOLO Enrichment Club (5-12 yrs)
You can choose your preferred days, whether to be picked up, let us know!
Click here to read more about which schools we service.
Afterschool program add-ons in asterisk (*) for extra $10.
Our SPRING BREAK Enrichment Camp is an extended ALL DAY version of our After School Enrichment Programs that are launching in September 2018 for school age children. Each day will include a variety of enrichment classes/lessons along with group co-operative games for children to learn team building while creating lasting friendships in a Reggio-inspired environment.
ART - creativity
YOGA - health, wellness
MATH - cognitive
PARK - nature (weather permitting)
PLAY - fun, cooperative games
COOKING - nutrition
DANCE/MUSIC - culture
FIELD TRIPS - exploration
March 19th-23rd & March 26th-30th
9am - 3pm
Before and After Care from 8am-9am & 3pm-6pm
Image courtesy of Pixabay
Single parents are often so absorbed in tending the needs of their children that they neglect taking care of their own well-being. With proper coping skills in your emotional toolkit you can better overcome challenges as they arise and maintain better mental and physical health. Here are some great tips to help you develop a self-care routine to stay happy, healthy, and in turn be able to offer more to your children.
Single and stressed. The American Psychological Association explains that many singles “unrealistically expect that the family can function like a two-parent family, and may feel that something is wrong when it can not. The single parent may feel overwhelmed by the responsibility of juggling caring for the children, maintaining a job and keeping up with the bills and household chores. And typically, the family's finances and resources are drastically reduced following the parents' breakup.”
Sound familiar? As a single parent you face a number of stressors in your daily life that nuclear families do not. Conflicts with your ex, visitation and custody issues, reduced opportunities to enjoy your children, complications from dating and new relationships, seeing the effects on your kids, and disturbances in the relationships with extended family members can be complex challenges for single parents. It’s a struggle that can strain and damage your well-being.
First-aid. Experts cited by Psychology Today recommend establishing a “first-aid kit” to help you recognize and heal emotional damage that comes from stress:
Your toolkit. Taking care of yourself will help you overcome and heal emotional damage to maintain good mental health. Add these tools into your self-care program to support your emotional and physical needs:
Coping skills. When the going gets tough, employ deep breathing exercises, yoga and meditation to help you stay in the present instead of being distracted by the past or the future.
Good habits. Keep some structure in your days so you can find time to tend your basics. Eat right, exercise and get enough sleep. An established routine will also reduce your child’s stress and help you stay organized.
Positivity Maintaining an optimistic, positive attitude helps you overcome emotional challenges when they arise. Reflect on your successes by listing things you have accomplished for you and your children. Avoid comparing yourself with others and how you see their progress as parents.
Support network. The American Academy of Pediatrics points out you should not isolate yourself with busyness or try to be entirely “self-sufficient.” Reach out to family and friends but don’t underestimate the power of flexible childcare. Drop-in childcare offers single parents a safe alternative to creating “latch key” children. Flexible care doesn’t lock you into a set schedule and is an ideal solution when you work multiple jobs, need last-minute care, or simply want to have an hour of time to yourself.
Control finances. Money can be a big stressor, so experts advise that getting a handle on your situation will help you feel more secure, even if funds are tight. Establish a budget and set aside money for the future.
Time in nature. Single parents often are running to and from obligations and spend very little time savoring the outdoors. Being in nature reduces stress levels and promotes mental health.
Developing a self-care program can help you navigate obstacles and stay healthy and happy. You’ll be a better parent with more to offer your children, instead being run ragged. Learn to recognize when you need some first-aid, and put tools in your toolkit for better coping and psychological health. You deserve emotional well-being and a good self-care program!
By Daniel Sherwin
What are the benefits of care in a mixed age classroom? Children will learn from others through observation and interaction. Here are some reasons why we find learning in a multi-age setting is beneficial for our children’s development.
Social Emotional Learning and Development
When children have the chance to interact and socialize with peers of different ages, it helps them in developing social skills and building confidence as well as self-esteem.
Learning with your Peers
Learning with peers that are varying in age (2-5) helps children build confidence, learn from one another, and how to model for others by setting a good example.
Demonstrating and instilling the importance of teamwork can teach children to listen and respect the opinions of others, cooperation and equality.
Siblings can remain in the same classrooms while still interacting with other children. For some, it helps in the process of gradual entry if it is their first experience being away from family or caretakers.
Individual Support Plan
Teachers are able to to focus on the needs of each child rather than the developmental levels of the overall levels in a same age classroom.
Children learn compassion, patience and problem-solving skills as they interact and help other children.
Younger children will find a sense of challenge when working on more complex activities with older peers.
Children are exposed to different cultures and family backgrounds in which they learn to respect each other’s values.
Check our WOLO child care programs. We offer various educational drop-in programs and child care for ages 2-5. Click here to read more!
Congratulations to all our students on a FANTASTIC 1st Winter Piano & Music Recital at WOLO School of Arts! We want to thank all the teachers, staff, and parents for their support, hard work, and dedication to ensuring our recitals run smoothly and comfortably. Of course, our students are the main stars of the show. We are beyond excited to begin 2018 and we look forward to seeing everyone's progress as they delve further into their piano learning journey! For more photos, please visit...
~ Warmest, Miss Donna
Director of School of Arts & Happy Keys Piano Program
Are you interested in learning piano in a fun, engaging, and educational environment? We offer piano lessons for children to adults and we start at 3 years old! Sign up for a free lesson here! First month promo $99/4 (30 minutes) lessons.