Now offering free access to all our articles !

We have added value for our loyal fans by making all past articles available to access free on-line! 

Our gift to you!

We are always looking for ways to improve our fans on-line experience, and, to this effect, have now introduced free access to all the interesting articles which have featured throughout the years in The Malta Baby & Kids Directory publications.

 

 

Schools http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=101&subcategory=&maincategory=101
Parties - http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=103&subcategory=&maincategory=103
Pregnancy & Birth

- http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=102&subcategory=&maincategory=102
Days Out http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=106&subcategory=&maincategory=106
Shopping  - http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=100&subcategory=&maincategory=100
Health  - http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=104&subcategory=&maincategory=104
Activities  - http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=108&subcategory=&maincategory=108
Travel  - http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=109&subcategory=&maincategory=109
Childcare  http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=107&subcategory=&maincategory=107
Sports Activities http://www.maltababyandkids.com/articles.php?id=99&subcategory=&maincategory=99

 

 

 

Communication in Families

 

Difficult communication seems to be the cause of many family problems. Serious attention to this problem is therefore of utmost importance in order to achieve a positive family experience. When children are young, they  absorb the cues given by their environment. This puts considerable responsibility on adults to teach by example and model behaviour.

 

Words by Steve Libreri – Social Worker and Parent Coach Communication within the family is nowadays an important consideration. In an era of technology which is supposedly intended to eradicate all potential barriers to communication, communication breakdown sounds like quite a paradox. However, the frequency of reports and complaints by parents and caregivers about their dissatisfaction with regard to communication issues, suggests that this is in fact a real challenge faced by many families. Difficult communication seems to be the cause of many family problems. Serious attention to this problem is therefore of utmost importance in order to achieve a positive family experience.

When children are young, they absorb the cues given by their environment. This puts considerable responsibility on adults to teach by example and model behaviour.

The ultimate investment in child wellbeing is time and attention, as these give children the reassurance that they are cared for. Time for, and attention to, children also guarantees a sense of nurturing, protection and security.

Being still inexperienced, children begin to make sense of the world and form the first rules and ideas about the world through their exchanges with their parents. Therefore making positive plans and interacting with children in a caring way will certainly help in teaching them that their parents are there for them.


A steady relationship will form the basis of all communication in the future. So as parents, make your investments early. If your children see you as present and caring, they will reciprocate with a degree of trust necessary for future exchanges.

 

 


 

              Building a Safety Net

This article was written by Andrew Azzopardi, consultant for ibrowsesafely.com.mtVodafone Malta Foundation

 

 Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat….the list of social media sites is already very long and as time goes on, it is bound to get longer. Parents need to involve themselves in their children’s online lives to help guide their progeny through the ever-changing cyber-world.

MCA’s latest study ‘Children’s Internet Use and Parents - Perceptions of Their Children’s Online Experience’, states that 99.4% of children in primary and secondary schools have access to the internet and 78% of children look to their parents for information related to the internet. 

ibrowsesafely.com.mt has developed 6 golden rules to guide parents. 


The keystone to putting the six golden rules into practice is laying the groundwork for an open and honest dialogue with your child. This means your children will be more likely to turn to you for support or advice if they find themselves in an uncomfortable, difficult or scary situation. This open-door policy is the best first line of defence to keeping your child safe online.

You should show an interest in the websites and social media platforms your children use and take the initiative to use the internet and learn about the latest technologies, apps and platforms. Platforms like ibrowsesafely.com.mt are a useful tool for parents to support and simplify this type of research.

Online activity should be approached very much like real life; discuss the benefits and dangers of the internet, ask your children about what they do to keep themselves safe. Sometimes they might not have even thought about safety and having a straightforward but stress-free chat about it can raise their awareness without alarming them unnecessarily.

For more detail on each of the 6 Golden Rules, please visit ibrowsesafely.com.mt.  ibrowsesafely.com.mt is an initiative born within the Vodafone Malta Foundation, as part of Vodafone Group initiative Digital Parenting. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Faces of Child Abuse

Words by Daniela Farrugia Camoin

BA, MA Youth and Community Studies and Personal Performance Coach Founder of Positive Parenting Strategies

Child maltreatment is certainly not a new phenomenon.  Unfortunately it has existed since the beginning of recorded history.  Even more unfortunate is that it is on the rise across the globe.  We often associate child abuse to broken bones and bruises.  In other words, to visible scars.  Yet other than physical abuse there are other types of abuse, which more often than not go unnoticed because the scars are not as obvious.  This type of abuse includes emotional and sexual abuse and neglect.  All abuse, whether physical, emotional, sexual or neglect leave deep, lasting scars which children carry with them  into  adulthood  and  beyond  the  time  they  were  actually abused. No individual should turn a blind eye to child abuse.  It is important to break the cycle when we find out that this is actually happening.  The earlier abused children get help, the greater the chance for them to heal and not let the abuse inflict lifelong problems such as lack of trust  and  relationship  difficulties,  trouble  regulating  emotions  and feelings of being  ‘worthless’ and ‘damaged’. There are a number of common myths surrounding the tragedy of child abuse.  Society tends to think that child abuse does not happen in ‘good’ families.  However, statistics show that child abuse crosses all economic, racial and cultural lines.  Another very common myth is that the majority of child abusers are strangers to the child – yet the very sad truth is that most abusers are family members or people who are very close to the family.  Children who have been abused do not always grow up to be abusers.  Whilst the chances of the cycle repeating  itself  is  a  strong  possibility,  most  survivors  indeed  grow into  strong  adults  who  have  a  strong  motivation  to protect  their children  against  what  they  went  through  and  become excellent parents.

 

Daniela Farrugia Camoin

Email: info@positiveparentingstrategies.net

Website: www.positiveparentingstrategies.net

Facebook: Positive Parenting Strategies

 

Mobile No.: 99922137 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

   

 

Understanding anger and supporting children to manage it constructively 

 

In their development and growth, children often find themselves in stressful circumstances.  Frustration is a challenging and critical component in a child’s developmental growth, which if not overcome, will often manifest itself in outbursts of anger. 

We live in a culture where so much emphasis is placed on performance, achievement and on delivering quick results. Sometimes this is experienced as peer pressure, even more so in school.  If children are not taught constructive ways to express anger and frustration they frequently act out aggressive behavior in order to express their feelings. It is important to acknowledge that anger is a valid emotion. It informs us that something is not quite right and it is fundamental for children to know that it is acceptable to feel angry, otherwise they may turn their anger onto themselves, causing self-harm. As adults we may need to learn to listen to our children more and encourage them to manage their emotions in a way that supports healthy functioning.  

Anger is a form of distress that combines physiological and emotional arousal and often leads to conflict. Anger also controls other emotions like fear, sadness and shame that children find difficult to cope with.  Such a state of being influences their social and emotional well-being and has a direct impact on learning.  When a child is in distress, it is difficult for him or her to learn. We need to teach them how to regulate their emotional state before they can be open to respond positively or to assimilate information. 

Children thus need to develop skills that support them to manage their anger, such as learning to

- take time out

- move away from the zone of conflict

- breathe; breathing exercises help the child calm down and regulate his/her physiological state of arousal

- count to ten; this also helps to calm down and delay acting out

- become aware of where the child’s anger tenses up the body, such as in the hands, feet...

- find a positive way to release the pent up energy, like bouncing a ball or going for a run...

- find an adult or a friend to talk to

- be honest about feelings

- imagine ways that would help resolve conflicts 

- think of a good solution 

It is important to acknowledge and support their positive thinking as this will also reinforce their positive behaviour. Often, children are angry at themselves as they believe that they are the cause of our disappointments. We need to reflect on how anger is managed within the family system as well as at school since children mirror adult behaviour. If we are not too hard on ourselves and accept that we sometimes fail then we give children permission to tolerate their own failures. Our role as parents and educators is to provide a safe space where we can challenge and support them to learn and to develop into mature adults. In a constructive environment, children may surprise us with positive ways they develop to manage their anger.

Anna Fenech holds a MA degree in Expressive Arts Therapy and is a Gestalt Psychotherapist. She is also trained as a Psychotherapeutic Counsellor with children and young adults. She works in different settings and also runs a private practice working with children and adults.   

   For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

 

Modern trends in Holy Communion Parties

Lately, the Maltese appear to be veering away from the traditional, large, over-the-top ‘wedding’ style parties which were a fashionable way to celebrate their children’s First Holy Communion a few decades ago. The new millennium has seen a backlash against the rising cost of first Holy Communion celebrations locally. Nowadays, in a collective attempt to curb the traditional enthusiasm for pomp and ceremony which normally surrounds this Christian milestone, schools are increasingly encouraged to organise a collective party on their premises. This not only aids in cutting costs for the parents of the second year students; it also encourages a sense of camaraderie amongst those involved in the event planning. The families of the child who is celebrating their First Holy Communion generally bring their immediate family to the joint party; then the parents tend to arrange a tea party directly following the church ceremony, for close family members to attend. More often than not, this takes place at home, and would last a couple of hours, since the parish generally organises First Holy Communion ceremonies on Sunday afternoons, during the school term. There would still be a couple of parents who organise lavish First Holy Communion parties individually, but these are in the minority. In this case, then customarily the entire class would be invited, along with cousins and a few friends of the child in question. Popular venues include indoor play areas, such as Playzone and Romparound, theme parks like Playmobil and activity venues –bowling, for instance. In this way, the child in question receives plenty of gifts, not necessarily religious. The children who have been invited get to run around and waste their energy, whilst their parents enjoy a rare opportunity to sit down with a cup of tea. The incentive to reign in the excessive enthusiasm surrounding First Holy Communion events comes directly from the local parish priests. One particular church in Gozo had the children wear matching cloaked gowns over their outfits, in an attempt to discourage meringue style dresses and mini groom suits in an attempt to remind participants to dwell on the true solemnity of the occasion. Announcements during Mass, in the run up to the big day, raised awareness that fascinators, hats, strapless dresses or miniskirts would not be an acceptable dress code for the mothers of the youngsters. Despite the popular tide turning away from massive celebrations, many families buckle under the pressure of conversations on the church steps regarding the outfit, and find themselves getting swept away in the excitement of the Holy Communion rush, in spite of themselves. At the very least, previously blasé couples will go out and buy new outfits for themselves and their offspring, and order a cake and catering for their family gathering in order to celebrate.  Party  venues  and  animators  have  suffered  because  of  this  contemporary  tendency  to  pool Holy Communion parties’ together-resulting in less individual bookings for them. Since most schools tend to host the party on their own grounds, thus saving on cost, conventional party venues  are  finding  innovative  ways  to  encourage  individuals  to  host  their  First  Holy Communion  parties  at  their  site,  by  offering  early booking  discounts  .The  Parent  Teacher Association often spends a large portion of their budget on animators, as ,after all,this is a party for children and the purpose of the festivity is for the children attending to have a lot of fun. 

For school based First Holy Communion parties, the services of large animation companies which cater for big groups of children are often utilised. Bouncy Castles,magic shows and high energy organized games are very popular with children of this age group. Catering, complete with staff, cutlery and crockery are outsourced which ensures plenty of refreshments for young and old alike. First Holy Communion communal parties normally follow a brief procession, followed by Holy Mass.  In short, Holy Communion parties in Malta have come a long way from the stuffy church hall, filled with aging relatives, during which the bored celebrant would receive a multitude of religious icons and Holy Bibles. Nowadays, those families concerned are focussing more on the religious significance of the occasion, and less on outdoing one another through outlandish celebrations. Long may it continue!

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

Il-Quccija

 

Traditional Maltese 1st birthday parties

Of the many Maltese traditions, few have survived as successfully as the ‘Quccija’.   Before this, the word ‘Quccija’ referred to a more morbid tradition the Maltese had, that when a family member died they would donate food to the poor to commemorate the deceased.  It is not clear how it changed into the joyful tradition that it is today -  a celebration of a child’s first birthday when relatives and family friends are invited and, besides the usual party fare, a game is played in which the child’s future is predicted. It has been practiced in this way since the 18th Century.   Objects representing different professions, trades or lifestyles are placed on a tray or in a basket and the child crawls towards them.  The first object which the child picks up is said to predict that child’s future.  In the past the selection for boys was quite different to that of girls however the more modern ‘Quccija’ would include many of the same objects. 

Boys used to be presented with tools for traditional trades or professions or even a character trait.  If he picked up corn, for example, it was a sign of a liberal personality, an inkstand or pen meant his profession would be that of a notary or lawyer, if a carpenter’s tool then he would be likely to become a carpenter. There were also usually some coins to indicate wealth. 

For girls the objects tended to be a needle representing a seamstress, cooking utensils, an egg which represented fertility and also money which in those days would probably have meant making a good marriage.

In both cases there was always a religious article for example rosary beads which would indicate that the child was inclined towards a spiritual vocation.

In a modern Quccija there is no limit to the variety of objects which could be presented to either a boy or a girl.   Here are some ideas for what you can put on you child’s quccija tray, but do not feel restricted...you can use your imagination:

Calculator – accountant

Computer mouse – career in I.T.

Credit Card – banker

Musical Instrument – musician

Book – journalist/author

Chalk – teacher

Ballet Shoe – Dancer

Ball (or any other piece of sports equipment) – sportsman

Comb or brush – hairdresser

Lipstick – beautician/makeup artist

Paintbrush – artist

 

So for your next child’s first birthday party try out this Maltese tradition.  You never know it may predict your child’s future!

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

    Pregnancy & Birth    

Pregnant? Nothing fits anymore?

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

 

Postnatal fitness and wellbeing

What you need to know 

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

You are pregnant - Congratulations! 

 

 

To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Does your baby need a sleep coach? 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

What I need to buy or borrow checklist 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

On your way to becoming a parent? 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Maternity bag essentials 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Low back pain during pregnancy.

Can Osteopathy help?

 


What is Ostheopathy ?

Osteopathy is a manual medicine which is widely practiced throughout the world. In the UK, an estimated 30,000 people consult an osteopath every working day.

Most of the ailments presented to the osteopath are of a musculoskeletal nature, which include chronic back pain, neck pain, tension headaches and general stiffness.

 

Do expectant mothers suffer from back pain?

It has been shown that about 76% of expectant mothers report episodes of back pain throughout their pregnancy, and that many seek the opinion of an osteopath.

Treatment and followups by an osteopath have been clinically shown to improve outcomes with back pain during pregnancy, particularly in the case of those suffering from sacroiliac joint dysfunction and pubic symphysis dysfunction.

 

What is sacroiliac joint dysfunction and how is it treated?

Pregnancy brings about hormonal changes in the body to enable it to carry the child and for delivery. Relaxin is a hormone specifically produced to soften ligaments, allowing the pelvis to become more mobile (lax) to accommodate the growing baby. This increased ligamentous laxity can bring about undue strain on joints and ligaments, particularly the sacroiliac joint (you can feel this over the ‘dimple’ on your lower back). Manual manipulative treatment (such as that performed by an osteopath) can address imbalances in the pelvis, improve weight distribution and allow the joints to function properly.

 

Where can I find a qualified osteopath in Malta?

Osteopaths are required by law to have a warrant to practice in Malta. The Council for Professions Complementary to Medicine (CPCM) regulates the profession. A minimum B.Sc. (Hons.) qualification in Osteopathy is required in order to be able to practice. Osteopathy Malta Clinic in Ta’ Xbiex houses highly experienced, UK qualified osteopaths.

For more information, please visit www.osteopathymalta.com or email info@osteopathymalta.com

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

Maternity bag essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in the hospital

 
Labour bag
 Your medical record chart
 Birth Plan
 Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas
 A light dressing gown, socks and slippers
 Headphones
 Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner
 Relaxation materials - books, cards, games…
 Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card
 Hairbrush
 Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel
 Massage oil/lotion
 Cooling water spray
 TENS machine if you choose to use one for pain relief
 Shower gel/shampoo
 Toothbrush and toothpaste
 Maternity pads
 
 
For baby
 Cotton wool
 Newborn nappies x 3
 Babygros
 Vest
 Hat
 Cardigan
 
Hospital bag for mum
 Two nursing bras
 Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding
 Disposable underwear
 Breast pads
 Three packs of maternity sanitary towels
 Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth
 Nipple Balm and healing Compresses
 Make-up bag
 Hairbrush and travel hairdryer
 Money for buying snacks, magazines etc
 Clothes for in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes
 Mobile phone, charger and numbers needed
 Intimate wipes
 
For baby
 Car seat
 Three baby gros
 Three vests
 Baby blanket
 24 disposable newborn nappies
 Nappy cream
 One roll of cotton wool
 One pair of socks or booties
 Hat
 Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)
 Muslin squares
 Scratch mitts
• A going home outfit: hat, all-in-one suit and blanket
 
Going home
 Your partner or somebody else can bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in. (In most countries the hospital will not let your baby go home without this).
 

The benefits of breastfeeding

To protect the right of the child, to foster an optimal start in life and to encourage the mother's right to achieve it

 

A lot is being said and done about this very emotive subject. Some argue that breast is best, while others argue that it doesn’t matter, as long as they have given birth to healthy babies. The choice is theirs, and it should be respected.

For those who are still unsure about the advantages of breastfeeding, the following information highlights some of its benefits – both for the baby and the mother – based on recent research.

Apart from being the perfect food for the baby because it is so easily digested, breastmilk contains antibodies which protect babies from various allergies and infections such as gastroenteritis, as well as chest, urinary and ear infections. It also reduces the risk of diabetes and some childhood cancers, decreases the likelihood of obesity, high blood pressure and cardiac disease in later life, improves cognitive development, and works on mouth/jaw development.

The uterus contracts during breastfeeding, thus helping the mother’s shape return to normal at a faster pace. Breastfeeding also reduces the chance of ovarian or breast cancer and helps bone density in the mother.

Breastfeeding saves money, since breastmilk is free. Furthermore, it saves time and is proven to be more convenient for busy mums, as it involves no heating or sterilising.

Apart from having the right to decide whether to breastfeed her infant or not, a mother also has the right to be given the correct information.

If you would like more information or require support to make an informed choice about your feeding method, the Association of Breastfeeding Counsellors (as a branch of Cana Movement) can help. Call our association on 9983 7170, send us an email on charmainegalea@gmail.com or find us on Facebook.

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

The Purest Ingredients for a New Beginning

Thanks to Weleda Mum & Baby Range

 

Since it was established, Weleda has pursued objectives which sprang from its founding principles. Its products are intended to support people in their personal development, in maintaining, promoting and restoring their health, and in their efforts to achieve physical well-being and a balanced lifestyle.

Skin as delicate as your baby’s, needs very little intervention to become the priceless natural shield needed for life. Treat dry, chafed or irritated skin, cleanse little bottoms, or enjoy a soothing massage together with the simplest of all formulations. Light organic sesame oil and extract of organic calendula are all we need to offer you this treasure. Softening, warming, calming and relaxing – for tender moments with your little one from the first day.

To create a perfectly gentle wash that works for babies, we put in a lot of thought. Formulated with beneficial ingredients like extract of organic calendula, the wash helps to gently lift dirt, leaving skin soft, hair easy to comb and baby’s own scent intact. Sweet almond oil prevents dryness, and the soft lather doesn’t sting baby’s eyes. No tears, no tugs, no roughness – just a clean, sweet-smelling, wriggly baby.

Organic calendula, the humble pot marigold, has exceptional anti-inflammatory properties, and is used in our Calendula Baby Care products. In our hard- working Nappy Change Cream we blend calendula and chamomile extracts with sweet almond and sesame oil, making a rich cream to reduce redness and gently care for the nappy area. Skin-friendly lanolin and zinc oxide provide a barrier against damp. Midwives agree we’ve been offering an exceptional product for nearly 30 years!

And for Mum: Perineum Massage Oil An all-natural oil to help you prepare for the birth of your baby. Perineal massage enhances skin’s flexibility, protecting against tears and cuts during childbirth.

 

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

What I need to buy or borrow checklist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nursery Clothing Essential supplies For travelling

• Cot and mattress

• Moses basket/crib

• Linen (sheets, blankets, etc.)

• Changing mat/table

• Wardrobe

• Chest of drawers

• Play mat

• Baby bath

• Night light

• Baby monitor

• Musical mobile (to hang over cot)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

• Cotton sleep suits

• 3 x sleeping bags

• 4 cotton vests

• 1-2 two-piece outfits

• 2-4 cardigans

• 4-6 pairs socks/bootees

• 1 pair gloves/mittens (for winter)

• 1 snowsuit (for winter)

• Muslin clothes/ bibs

• 1 hat

• 1 pair soft shoes/ booties

 

 

 

• Disposable or washable nappies

• Baby wipes, cotton wool

• Nappy bags

• Barrier cream/petroleum jelly

• Breast pump

• Bottles

• Sterilizer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

•Pram/pushchair

• Rain cover and cosytoes

• Car seat

• Baby carrier/ sling

• Travel and changing bag

• Travel cot 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 
 
 

 

 

 

 

Maternity Bag Essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital

Labour bag

       Your medical record chart

       Birth plan

       Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

       A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

       MP3 or MP4 and headphones

       Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner

       Relaxation materials - books, cards, games…

       Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card

       Hairbrush

       Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel

       Massage oil/lotion

       Cooling water spray

       TENS machine if you choose

         to use one for pain relief

       Shower gel/shampoo

       Toothbrush and toothpaste

       Maternity pads

For baby

       Cotton wool

       Newborn nappies x 3

       Babygros

       Vest

       Hat

       Cardigan

Hospital bag for mum

       Two nursing bras

       Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding

       Disposable underwear

       Breast pads

       Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

       Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

       Nipple cream and compresses if breastfeeding

       Make-up bag

       Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

       Healthy snacks to nibble & share, small bottles of water or small cartons of juice

       Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

       Lots of change for phone credits in hospital and mobile phone

       Clothes to wear in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

       Phone and charger

       Pen and paper to write essential instructions down

       Intimate wipes

For baby

       Car seat

       Three baby gros

       Three vests

       Baby blanket

       24 disposable newborn nappies

       Nappy cream

       One roll of cotton wool

       One pair of socks or booties

       Hat

       Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)

       Muslin squares

       Scratch mitts

       A going home outfit: hat,

         all-in-one suit and blanket

Going home

       Your partner or somebody else has to bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in since this is the law in  Malta (the hospital will not let your baby go home without this).

 

 
 
 

 

 

 

 

  

The stages of pregnancy

 

The Stages of Pregnancy – Month by Month

- 1st Month

Embryo implants in uterus

Embryonic cells start specialising in function

Brain and spinal cord start to form

Heart starts beating

Embryo is size of grain of rice by the end of the month

 

 

 

Mother Baby

- 2nd Month

Breasts enlarge and become tender

Pressure on bladder causes increase in frequency of urination

Vaginal secretion increases

- 3rd Month

Morning sickness may stop

Increased appetite

May have mood swings

- 4th Month

Abdomen bulges

First kick

- 5th Month

May feel more energetic

Needs frequent rest

Uterus feels heavy

May have leg cramps at night

- 6th Month

Discomfort due to size of bulge

Back pain can be eased by exercise

- 7th Month

May experience false contractions (Braxton Hicks)

May develop stretch marks on breasts and abdomen

- 8th Month

Frequent urination

Breathing may be laboured

Tires easily

- 9th Month

Ready for labour

Increased urination

Needs plenty of rest

If contractions experienced – refer to doctor or midwife

 

 

 

 

- 2nd Month

Embryo almost 1 inch long

Brain and spinal cord almost complete

Limbs and all major organs start to form

- 3rd Month

Embryo is now a fetus

About 3 inches long

May respond to sounds

Heart beat audible by a doptone

- 4th Month

May move and kick

Lanugo and vernix develop

Umbilical cord thickens, Sex can be determined through ultrasound imaging

- 5th Month

Fetus almost 30cm long

Maximum length and weight gain by baby during this month

Period of increased activity

Respiration and urination begins

- 6th Month

Skin wrinkled

Movements more vigorous

Responds to sound

Baby considered viable

- 7th Month

Weighs just over 1 kg

Finger prints and all organs developed 

Movements decrease

- 8th Month

Fully formed

Moves into birth position – head down

Lanugo reduces

- 9th Month

Fully grown – ready to be born

Lungs fully developed

Body fat regulates temperature

Immune system developed

 

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

  

 

Should you have a Birth Plan?

 

When it comes to having a baby, does the expectant mother have a right to choose the way she would like to have her baby? Truly, what are her choices?

It is common knowledge that encouraging the pregnant couple to make a Birth Plan helps them to shoulder parenting responsibilities in the future. To be able to make choices, they need to become knowledgeable about what happens during the birth, claim ownership of the situation and be able to participate in decision-making with the support of their caregivers. Space needs to be given should a couple not like what is being offered to them, and then if necessary, they may ask elsewhere for a second opinion and even opt for another system that appeals to them better.

Ideally, true choices lie in different systems that are made available. One should be able to choose the people who will care for them, the place and the management of birth. It is one’s right to ask pertinent questions with regards to statistics, safety and methods used. This depends on whether the pregnancy is considered low-risk or high-risk. The plan needs to be flexible to cater for instances when the outcome takes a different route than expected.  

Some of the topics that offer choices are best discussed during pregnancy, hence the importance of education early in pregnancy. There are many options and whether one prefers a natural, non-medicated birth or a medically assisted delivery, a Birth Plan is the perfect tool to having one’s desires met as much as possible. Here are some choices to consider:

•        Place of Birth: Home, Midwife-led Birth Centre, Doctor-led Private hospital or Public hospital

•        Due date:  Labour starts naturally or induced?  What kind of induction – natural vs medical?

•        Intervention:  Monitoring- continuous vs intermittent, vaginal exams, stripping of membranes, rupture of membranes, episiotomy?

•        Presence of support persons: partner, doula, family, other qualified persons

•        Pain relief: Medical vs Natural.  When to offer? Epidural, sedative, tranquillizer, narcotic, / relaxation & breathing techniques, birth pool, hypnotherapy, acupuncture, acupressure,

•        Comfort choices:  privacy, mobility, positions, room temperature, shower, birthing ball, dim light, music, hot water bottle, ice chips, aromatherapy, TENS,

•        The Birth: Pushing, delivery by mother/father, cutting chord delay, skin-to-skin contact, silence, placenta

•        Cesarean: total anesthesia, epidural, incision, presence of partner, hospital stay.

•        After the Birth: Breastfeeding, formula, bottles, pacifiers, photographs

•        Hospital stay: single/shared room, short (hours) or long (days) 

Personalising your birth makes it tailor-made for your wishes.  This helps make your birth experience a memorable milestone in your life you do not want to forget!

 

Marianne Theuma I.C.C.E. is a qualified teacher, childbirth educator and an experienced Doula. She directs “In The Family Way”, a school for parents based in Marsascala, where various parenting courses, parent clubs and other activities are held regularly. For more information visit Website: www.inthefamilyway.net. or phone 21636735.

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

What I need to buy or borrow checklist

 

For the Nursery

•Cot and mattress

•Moses basket/crib

•Linen (sheets, blankets, etc.)

•Changing mat/table

•Wardrobe

•Chest of drawers

•Play mat

•Baby bath

•Night light Clothing

•Cotton sleep suits

•3 x sleeping bags

•4 cotton vests

•1-2 two-piece outfits

•2-4 cardigans

•4-6 pairs socks/bootees

•1 pair gloves/mittens (for winter)

•1 snowsuit (for winter)

•Muslin clothes/ bibs

•1 hat

•1 pair soft shoes/ booties

 

Essential supplies

•Disposable or washable nappies

•Baby wipes, cotton wool

•Nappy bags

•Barrier cream, Vaseline

•Breast pump

•Bottles

•Sterilizer

 

For travelling

•Pram/pushchair

•Rain cover and cosytoes

•Car seat

•Baby carrier/ sling

•Travel and changing bag

•Travel cot

 

Maternity bag essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital.

 

Labour Bag

•Your medical record chart

•Birth Plan 

•Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

•A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

•MP3 or MP4 and headphones 

•Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner 

•Relaxation materials - books, cards, games… 

•Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card 

•Hairbrush 

•Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel 

•Massage oil/lotion 

•Cooling water spray 

•TENS machine if you choose 

to use one for pain relief

•Shower gel/shampoo 

•Toothbrush and toothpaste 

•Maternity pads 

 

For baby  

•Cotton wool 

•Newborn nappies x 3 

•Babygros 

•Vest 

•Hat 

•Cardigan

 

Hospital bag for mum

•Two nursing bras 

•Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding 

•Disposable underwear 

•Breast pads

•Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

•Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

•Nipple cream and compresses if breastfeeding

•Make-up bag

•Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

•Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

•Lots of change for phone credits in hospital and mobile phone with numbers needed and phone charger

•Clothes for in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

•Phone and charger

•Intimate wipes

 

For baby  

•Car seat

•Three baby gros

•Three vests 

•Baby blanket 

•24 disposable newborn nappies 

•Nappy cream

•One roll of cotton wool

•One pair of socks or booties 

•Hat 

•Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)

•Muslin squares 

•Scratch mitts

•A going home outfit: hat, 

all-in-one suit and blanket  

 

Going home

•Your partner or somebody else can bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in. (In most countries the hospital will not let your baby go home without this). 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here   

 

 

 

 

Baby Shower Editorial

 

The modern Baby Shower traces back hundreds of years to when people would bring helpful gifts to new mothers. Although there was no actual party, it was only a matter of time before these little celebrations evolved into baby showers as we know them today.   

A theme adds a special element to the party, be it storks, angels, teddy bears, traditional colours signalling the gender of the baby or simply something fun or whimsical. Deciding on a theme is the first step to take before choosing invitations, decorations, and even food.  

Shaping or cutting your treats & sandwiches into rubber duck or teddy bear shapes is another great idea to give your party food that special touch. 

Table decorations could be anything from matching plates, cups, napkins to baby decorated confetti, plastic pacifiers & feeding bottles filled with jellybeans or sweets. You can also add banners & hanging decorations.  

And when it comes to gifts, no baby shower would be the same without having a baby shower diaper cake.    

Diaper Cakes or Nappy Cakes are skilfully made up from useful baby items, including Diapers, Blankets, Clothes, Bath Products, Booties, Bottles, Soothers, Soft Toys, Socks, Pacifiers, in fact anything you can think of that would be useful for a new born.   

Diaper Cakes are becoming so popular because they are original & great group gifts. Baby shower hostesses love them because they are a cute and impressive centrepiece for the party & they can be decorated to match any theme you have chosen for your shower.  

Baby Shower favours are a great way to thank your guests. Candles, soaps, and bath salts are just a few ideas to give as favours. If you would like to get creative, some nice baby shower favours to make are cookies & cupcakes. 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

Cosmetics to avoid during pregnancy

 

Maltese women know very well how to care for their hair, make-up and nails. It is important too that pregnant women are aware of what cosmetics they should avoid during pregnancy and breastfeeding. 

We all love pampering ourselves, so let’s keep doing that even when we have a baby developing inside our body. 

Being pregnant does not need to mean nine months of staying in, because of weight gain and ‘mask of pregnancy’ (dark splotches on facial skin). We can try to control our weight and to even the colour of skin. With the right help it does not take too much work.

Be careful what creams you use during pregancy and check that none of them contains retinoid or salicylic acid which might harm developing baby, cause birth defects and pregnancy complications. Everybody should remember that every cosmetic that is applied on the skin, is absorbed into the bloodstream and travels to the placenta which feeds baby.

I am sure we all want to protect our babies, now we should learn what ingredients to avoid to prevent pregnancy complications. Stay away from these:

Retinoid is a type of vitamin A that is used in anti-wrinkle and acne treatment products. Salicylic acid is used to treat skin disorders, including acne, and you can find it in a number of skin products, such as cleansers and toners. 

Soy can make the ‘mask of pregnancy’ worse, as can oil of bergamot which is in many organic products.

When choosing the right sunscreen we should check if it contains oxybenzone, which might interfere with hormones in the body, and nano-sized ingredients, which are potentially linked to reproductive and developmental problems.

Make a list of forbidden ingredients and shop for cosmetics always carrying the list with you, so you can check which product is safe for pregnant women.

When you get pregnant you might need to put away cosmetics that you have been using so far, they might sensitize, irritate your skin and what’s worse harm developing baby. Anti-wrinkle creams, acne treatments products or anticellulite creams that contain caffeine

should be banned in this special time, that pregnancy is. Scents of certain products might become unbearable for you, so choose products with very gentle scents.  This emerged from research performed by  Leslie Baumann, professor of dermatology at the University of Miami and author of ‘The Skin Type Solution’. 

During pregnancy use only cosmetics designed especially for pregnant women, with extra gentle flavour composition and without allergens.

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

5 things to do on maternity leave before your baby’s born

 

You’re about to introduce the most time-consuming ‘project’ you’ve ever worked on into the equation, so maternity leave is the perfect time to indulge yourself and do things before the birth of your bundle of joy. 

Apart from keeping yourself in condition for your baby’s sake during pregnancy, in the months before the baby is born you should pay special attention to your teeth, skin, breasts and blood circulation.

1. An expectant mother can get so involved in her coming baby’s welfare that she forgets to look after her own teeth. During pregnancy, it is very important to do this, and to have a dental check. See Health Section, Dental Surgeons.

2. Many expectant mothers worry about being left with permanent “stretch marks” on the skin after childbirth. It is possible to help the skin to stretch more easily during pregnancy, and so reduce the chance of permanent marks afterwards. Oil and massage techniques starting in the fifth month of pregnancy are beneficial. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Massage & Complimentary Treatments 

3. To keep your breasts in condition throughout pregnancy, you will need a well-fitted bra and a routine of care for breasts and nipples. Get used to handling your breasts and nipples before you have a baby to feed. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Breastfeeding 

4. When you stand still the downward pressure of your baby may interfere with the flow of blood in the pelvis, and all the way back through the thighs and legs to the feet. This can increase the risk of varicose veins and hemorrhoids. You can reduce the effects of this pressure by moving about. Circulation can be improved generally through light exercise. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Exercise Pre & Post Natal 

5. Very few people are adequately prepared for the consequences of an accident or emergency with their children. It is not just a question of knowing where the plasters are kept, but more a matter of deciding what to do. Parents do not like to think of their child being involved in any mishap, which is why the subject of first aid is often put off until tomorrow. This is a natural reaction but avoiding the subject does not reduce the chances of having to cope with it. See Health Section, First Aid & Safety pg.

5 things to do on maternity leave after your baby’s born

 

1. BABY MASSAGE:

Massage is one of life's simple pleasures, and research has shown that baby massage can help babies grow better and behave better. It’s known to help babies who suffer from colic and it is thought to increase the baby’s immunity to illness. Massage helps babies breathe better and stimulate their senses, assisting in brain development. While massaging baby you both release the hormone oxytocin, which is the feel good hormone. This skin-to-skin connection is known as the therapeutic touch and helps parents and baby communicate better too, without saying a word. It's also a great way for dad to get in on the baby-bonding act. This is one of the simplest ways to calm your baby and, perhaps, even you. A gentle massage prior to bedtime every night is a lovely way to introduce a routine and prepare your baby for a good rest. Enrol yourself for one of these baby massage courses. For more information see Pregnancy & Birth Section, Massage & Complimentary Treatments 

SWIMMING:

Babies love the water and they can be introduced to swimming as early as six weeks. When newborns are exposed to water, they make automatic swimming movements. Also, early swimming helps develop a baby’s personality and decreases the chances of developing a fear of water. Swimming is great for their physical development as the water allows a baby to use their muscles without the constraints of gravity. The time spent in the water allows for a great bonding opportunity for both mum and dad! When a baby is younger than 6 months they will need to swim in a pool heated to a minimum of 32 degrees. Buy disposable swimming nappies or a reusable water one. See Sports Activities, Swimming 

2. PLAY CLASSES:

Play classes are a great way to encourage your baby’s social development, along with their mind and body. A vital activity for a child's development and learning is interactive play & floor time with their parent or primary caregiver. Play classes provide age-appropriate fun and creative stimulation for infants, toddlers and preschool children, your child will turn play into rich learning and you will enjoy this special bonding time together. These classes are very social and provide lots of new friends for both children and parents. There are a variety of classes from playing classes to music focused ones. So pop along to a few until you find the one which works best for you and your baby. See Pregnancy & Birth, Yoga, Activities Section, Mother & Baby Clubs, Baby sign language

3. FITNESS GROUPS:

Exercise is a great way to lift your spirits. There are classes suitable for new mums that accommodate baby in stroller. This environment can help with your confidence as you are with other women at the same stage as yourself. The exercise routines are designed for a post natal body focusing on increasing your stamina, toning your muscles and burning excess ‘baby fat’. Yoga and Pilates classes are available for both mother and baby and these are usually suitable from the time your baby is 6 weeks old – apart from being a great way for the new mum to de-stress, exercise also improves the baby’s digestive health and sleep. See Pregnancy & Birth, Exercise Pre & Post Natal pg xx, Yoga pg xx. Where money is tight, you can always put on your runners, pack the buggy and find other mums in your area to go walking with at no cost. It’s a perfect chance to spend time with baby while you exercise - guilt free! See Days Out Section, Public Parks & Gardens, Picnic Areas, Activities Section, Nature Walks 

4. MOVIE CLUBS:

There isn’t much choice but if it floats your boat and you decide to go to the movies it no longer has to be an ordeal and potentially fitting in between feeds. You can go with your hubby or a group of other mums. These ideal shows should have dimmed lighting and a lower volume so that it is a calmer environment for little ones. Since the movies cater for babies, crying during the screening is not an issue. Baby changing facilities are provided on site. Screenings are generally in the mornings on a weekday. While ticket prices are usually lower than general admission prices these also include a variety of freebies. These events are a great social gathering for both parents and babies alike. See Activities Section, Cinemas 

Finally don’t forget to register on our official website www.maltababyandkids.com for upcoming events for new mums in Malta.

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

          Days Out          

 

Educational Outings for children during the Summer Holidays

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Malta Tourism Authority list of events

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

8 reasons to catch the bus with your children 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Heritage Malta 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Most Popular "Children Friendly" Restaurants in Malta and Gozo

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Keeping kids entertained in restaurants

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Explore Malta by bus

Words by Jessica Mula – Marketing Executive at Malta Public Transport

“The wheels on the bus go round and round…” says a children’s song – probably one of the songs that comes to every young person’s mind when they get on a bus. Just hop on, and the big wheels will drive you around to explore Malta and its beautiful surroundings.

 

Travelling with Malta Public Transport is ideal for families with young kids! On every bus, there is space where one can stow pushchairs, while drivers can lower the buses to allow easier access for parents with pushchairs. Drivers can also assist with pushchairs if need be. On every bus there is also space for stowing baggage, which is very practical for women travelling with children and bulky items.

Children up to 4 years of age travel for free and those between 4 and 10 years can register for a personalised yellow tallinja card which has no photograph. Families who would like to explore the Maltese Islands may also make use of the Explore Card, which offers unlimited travel for 7 days at any time of the day. Another cost effective way of getting around the Maltese Islands is with the 12 Journey Card, which offers 12 journeys on the bus for one individual or which may also be shared by a group.

Malta Public Transport just recently launched a mobile app called tallinja. This app provides up-to-date bus information about the time of arrival of the next bus at any chosen bus stop, thus making travel easier for families. For more information visit the official website at publictransport.com.mt

Get there by Bus! On a lovely summer’s day families can enjoy Malta by bus and visit various places together.

One cannot miss the capital city of Malta, Valletta, as it has so much to offer. One of the places one should visit is The Upper Barrakka Gardens with it’s amazing view of the Grand Harbour (Route 133). Visiting Valletta will let families delve into Malta’s rich historical past and be swept away by the stories of all the museums, the churches and the palaces. Parents can enjoy shopping in the Capital while the children can have a good time playing around the dancing fountains at St. George’s Square (Route 133). The bus service to Valletta is very frequent, thus making it one of the easiest locations to reach.


The Ta’Qali National Park (Routes 56 & 186) is the place to be for an enjoyable picnic and a place where the children can enjoy a good run, freely, and in a safe environment.Close by, you will also find the Crafts Village, a vegetable market as well as the Malta Aviation Museum. 

As many may already know, the Maltese Islands get very hot during summer. So what should one do? Just spend a day relaxing at one of the nice beaches that our beautiful country has to offer! During summer, Malta Public Transport can easily take you to the beach, with several routes travelling to many beaches. Altought it may seem like a long journey, going to Għadira Bay (Routes: 41, 42, 49, 101, 221, 222, 250 & N11), only takes 30mins by public transport. Another advantage is that you would have no parking hassle as the bus will stop you very close to this pretty-looking bay.

Kids love a visit to the Malta International Aquarium in Buġibba (Route: 45), a new and exciting place having 41 tanks that include reptiles and amphibians, as well as Mediterranean and exotic fish from the Indian Ocean. It is also practical to visit by bus as there is a bus stop just outside the venue. Spend a day at Popeye’s Village (Routes: 41, 42, 49, 101, 221, 222, 250, X1 & X1A) and let the family experience the famous film set and its exciting fun rides. Kids will love it! To visit these places and others, the bus is your best option!

 

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

 

Best family friendly Heritage Malta sites

Living on such a culturally rich island means that children start becoming aware of our heritage at a very young age. Hence, it can never be too early to start exposing them and channelling their curiosity in the right direction. Heritage Malta, the National Agency for museums, has made it one of its priorities to make culture accessible to all audiences, including the young. 

 

Museums and sites that will definitely prove fascinating for kids are:

The National Museum of Archaeology – Megaliths carved with plants, animals and spirals are sure to leave children open-mouthed. Cartoons that explain at a glance what is written in the text, and hands-on displays, will ensure that children are never bored.

The Grandmaster’s Palace – Rows of armour lining the rich corridors and rooms will definitely be awesome for children. Careful though, some might want to become knights themselves after such a visit!

Għar Dalam Cave and Museum – Elephants? Rhinoceroses? Where else can you see them if not here? In miniature, skeletal forms of course! Let children wonder at how much fun it would be to go back in time and bring home a live one to replace your beloved pet.

Malta Maritime Museum – Pirates, treasures and ships are a sure fire way to spark a child’s imagination. Here you will find these and so much more!

Ta’ Kola Windmill (Gozo) – Step into an authentic windmill and show your children how the massive machinery used to produce the flour in the food they eat daily works!

Saint Paul’s Catacombs – Legends? Mysteries Bring a torch with you and put on Indiana Jones’ shoes so together you uncover the secrets hidden in the bowels of the earth. These and many other sites and museums are just waiting to be discovered. And if you want your children to become fully rounded and culturally aware human beings we only have one suggestion to put to you, and that is to start them young on the path of cultural discovery!

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

Seasonal Outings  

 

 

Seasonal Outings for families around the Maltese Islands

 

 

 

Bearing in mind Malta’s mild, unpredictable weather, families living locally need inspiration when looking for outings which can keep every member of the family happy, all year around.

Spring is one of my favourite seasons to enjoy all that the Maltese archipelago has to offer. The days start to get longer - which brings a welcome respite to the cold, dark winter days, breathing new life into the islands. As the chance of rain diminishes, outdoor pursuits become more feasible. Enjoy the simple pleasure of taking the ferry across to Valletta, to appreciate a wander around the stunning capital city. Kids of varying ages love to chase pigeons through the gardens of Upper Barrakka, while the parents take a load off and savour the impressive views. Though be sure to take a change of clothes with you for the rugrats, as the dancing fountains, spouting temptingly out of the square in front of The Grandmaster’s Palace, is almost impossible for the children to resist! Public gardens also come into their own as we gear up for the warmer weather, and San Anton and the neighbouring Kitchen Garden is a great place to while away a lazy afternoon. Malta has seen an increase in the amount of quiet, shady outdoor reading spots-like the public literacy gardens set in the Bir Miftuħ area of Gudja. Combine instilling a lifelong love of literacy with an outing by joining your nearest lending library. What better way to set a good example then to enjoy some healthy refreshments and an interesting book ensconced in nature.

Summer is a no brainer for families living in, or visiting, the Maltese archipelage. After all kids, sand and water are a timeless marriage made in heaven! Keep costs to a minimum by packing your own snacks, and plenty of iced water. Children do not need to tan so remember to invest in a total protection sunblock, or U.V. gear.T hen click on a dot along the coastline on your Google map, look up directions, and off you go! These long, idle beach days are a mini holidays in themselves, as you make childhood memeories which your family will treasure forever. Try to steer clear of the sun’s harmful midday rays by either putting the younger kids down for a nap on a sunbed in the shade, or by taking a break from the seaside to pay a visit to one of the many family friendly heritage sites which the Maltese Islands have to offer. The newly opened War Museum, recently relocated to the spectacularly renovated Fort St.Elmo, is sure to fire the imagination of young minds! Take a staycation and spend the day at Popeye’s Village – exploring the famous film set, taking a boat trip and playing a round of mini golf, which will surely see you all reluctant to leave at closing time.

Autumn heralds in the start of a new scholastic year, so weekday excursions tend to be closer to home - bicycle rides along the promenade to the local playground for an hour or so, or a trip to the closest indoor playcentre on those rainy days. On weekends pack the picnic basket and plaid blanket and head out to the craggy countryside. From nature walks with Malta Gerographical Society to kite flying, there is plenty for enterprising families to discover. Treat animal lovers to a visit to the Wildlife Park Malta, and give youngsters the thrill of experiencing African wildlife up close! What better way to spend a languorous Sunday afternoon than grabbing the extended family members and treating yourselves to lunch at the extensive Montekristo Estates,  enjoying their  wide range of food options and budget friendly prices. This time of year is ideal for a spot of impromptu camping by the seaside, as although the sea is still warm enough for a dip, the pesky mosquitoes have buzzed off! Join a cycling club and take long, enjoyable weekend morning rides in the company of like-minded families, working up a healthy appetite while you keep fit and get the whole family moving. Late in the season bargain hunters will be rewarded for their patience with cheap prices for weekends on the sister islands of Gozo and Comino; or at an all-inclusive resort in Malta. 

A huge thunderstorm at the end of the school holidays usually signals the start of the winter season.  Winter, though mild and temperate in Malta, tends to be a challenging time for parents looking to entertain their children. Locals are likely to be put off going out by even the slightest threat of rain, which comes from being spoilt by agreeable weather for the majority of the year! Indoor playcentres are the obvious choice, although beyond the age of eight most children then seem to outgrow them. Older children up to tweens prefer gaming arcades and interactive simulators. Lasermaxx at Baystreet in Paceville has something for all age groups to enjoy, from bumping cars to lasertag to retail therapy on Sundays! Those in the know, hurry to bag a spot to spend the night at ‘Bethlehem in Għajnsielem’. During the festive season this incentive of recreating the atmosphere surrounding the birth of Jesus is gaining popularity. Culminating in the arrival of the three kings, there are a few limited huts where you can give the kids a truly unique experience which you could always follow up by a night in one of the nearby hotels to scrub up!

For alternative events to attend as a family, don’t forget to subscribe to Malta Baby & Kids Directory’s free monthly e-newsletter, in order to keep updated on what’s on in the month ahead. Alternatively, the website www.maltababyandkids.com features a hugely popular ‘What’s On For Kids’ section- where interesting child friendly events are uploaded daily. Ensure you are never without a copy of the latest version of the Malta Baby & Kids Directory - the parents bible when needing assistance in making the right choices for their children! 

 

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

 

Fun for kids with Heritage Malta

 

 

Museums and heritage sites are great fun… if empowered to share their story in a stimulating and entertaining way.

 

Any visit to a heritage attraction is unavoidably bound to impart some kind of knowledge, and given that people stand a better chance to learn more in circumstances of positive engagement the experiences on offer must prove to be genuinely entertaining. Since its inception in 2002, Heritage Malta (the National Agency for Museums, Conservation and Cultural Heritage) has been striving to bring the heritage resources entrusted to its care closer to the general public through a rethink of the display and interpretation modes, the introduction of adequate visitor amenities, the crafting of a comprehensive outreach programme and the hosting of events. The list is appreciably long and is beyond the scope of this short contribution. 

It must be stated, nonetheless, that most of our museums and sites boast of a fully-fledged programme of thematic educational events ranging from storytelling to crafts and cooking workshops. Suffice to note that during the forthcoming scholastic year, Heritage Malta shall be offering some 250 thematic events for organised school groups. This programme has been designed to cater for a wide audience, the entire age spectrum from pre-grade pupils to post secondary students, and the mixed abilities of the prospective participants. A parallel outside school-hours programme will run for culture card holders.

Besides, Heritage Malta will keep enhancing its annual programme of family-oriented events. Families have, significantly, become one of the fastest growing segments of museum goers in the Maltese Islands and beyond. This is not surprising at all. In an age where social interaction is increasingly being challenged by the prevailing hectic lifestyles, visits to heritage resources are metamorphosing into ideal opportunities for parents and children to talk, explore and learn together - essentially, some quality time.

The coming months are particularly interesting. Further to the recently opened Fort St. Elmo (which incorporates the refurbished National War Museum), Heritage Malta shall be inaugurating Fort St. Angelo and opening up some twenty catacombs at the St. Paul’s Catacomb complex. We hope you will find the time to visit and experience these national treasures.

Valletta

Fort St. Elmo- National War Museum

National Museum of Archaeology

National Museum of Fine Arts

The Palace Armoury

The Palace State Rooms


Harbour Areas

Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum- Paola

Malta Maritime Museum- Vittoriosa

The Inquisitor’s Palace- Vittoriosa

Tarxien Temples- Tarxien (currently closed)


South

Għar Dalam- Birżebbu ġia

Ħaġar Qim Temples- Qrendi

Mnajdra Temples- Qrendi


Rabat & Mdina

Domvs Romana- Rabat

St.Paul’s Catacombs- Rabat

National Museum of Natural History- Mdina

Skorba- Mgarr

Ta’ Ħaġrat- Mgarr

 

Gozo

Folklore Museum- Victoria

Gozo Museum of Archaeology-Victoria

Gozo Nature Museum- Victoria

Ġgantija Temples- Xagħra

Old Prison- Victoria

Ta’ Kola Windmill- Xagħra

 

Closed Sites

Tal-Mintna Catacombs (by appointment)

San Pawl Milqi (by Appointment)

Borġ in-Nadur (by appointment)

Tas-Silġ (by appointment)

Xagħra Stone Circle(by appointment)

St. Augustine’s Catacombs ( by appointment)

Ta’ Bistra Catacombs (by appointment)

Għajn Tuffieħa Roman Baths

Tal-Pilar Chapel

Birġu Armoury

Salina Catacombs

Abbatija tad-Dejr

Fort St. Angelo

Fort Delimara

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Fun attractions for kids

 

Words by Andrea Critien – Malta Baby & Kids Directory

1.    For all aspiring 'Nemos', 'Aerials' and 'Capt Jack Sparrows' the Malta National Aquarium boasts 26 display tanks with mainly Mediterranean fish such as grouper, sea bream, sea bass, Mediterranean rays and octopi. The tanks also feature artificial replicas of historical artefacts found around the Maltese shores. Kids are in for a real adventure with the water walk through tunnel which will allow them to admire closely the fish species from the Indian Ocean including a black tip shark. Kids are guided through an interactive touch pool on how to handle urchins, starfish and crabs and taught about the nutritional habits of fish. Sleepover parties and diving-with-the-fish are also in the pipeline to give kids a surreal experience. (Days Out – Theme Parks)

2.      You need not be the Lone Ranger or an aspiring cowboy or simply wait to have a party to organise a group  of  friends  and  head  off  for  some  fun  time  at Sunflower  Stables.  Various  crafts  are  offered  to different ages – the younger kids can prepare a horse mask while the older ones have different horse games like ‘pinning the tail’. All kids just love the interaction with real live farm animals like goats, rabbits and chickens; they can also enjoy plenty of cart rides pulled by friendly ponies. (Parties - Party Venues).

3.     For aspiring soldiers a visit to Fort Rinella in Kalkara is a must! Malta’s liveliest museum where history comes to life daily from Monday to Sunday at 2.30pm sharp. Volunteers dressed as late 19th century Victorian soldiers will take visitors on an animated tour around the fort. This tour combines excellent guiding with lively and colourful historical re-enacting. The tour starts with the firing of an original Victorian cannon (which you can also fire!). This is followed by a live demonstration of how the fort would have been defended during an attack. The group is then directed into the fort only to be challenged by the sentry guarding the gate. More displays will take place inside the fort including military signalling, firing of rifles, bayonet practice, military cooking and more. Much use of original period equipment and weapons is made throughout this tour. Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 9.30am- 5.00pm. Catch buses no’s 3 and 213 to the Fort from Valletta. www.wirtartna.com

4.      Visit  Malta’s  leading  Artisan  Market  –  Malta  Artisan  Markets  -  selling  authentic  local  artisan products including arts and crafts and artisan food products direct from the artist and producer. The market offers creative kids’ activities with the artists and is a great place to mix and mingle with friends and family. Look up Malta Artisan Markets on Facebook or www.maltaartisanmarkets.com to discover when and where the next market will be held. (Shopping – Shopping Information).

5.  The BirdPark Malta is discretely nestled in Salina and is home to over 200 species of birds and other animals the park is a must for all those who have nature at heart. Flamingos, pelicans, swans, storks owls, cranes, parrots and many other amazing birds from around the world thrive happily with a variety of friendly mammals and reptiles. Visitors have the opportunity to learn about bird plumage cycles, flight, habitat, displays, song and calls, territory and pair formation, nests and eggs, migration and much more, whilst having the chance to observe and interact with wildlife. (Days Out – Themed Parks)

6. The Ħaġar Qim and Mnajdra Archaeological Park has a Visitor Center which is equipped with hands-on display together with a family area which includes educational activities for all the family as well as a “nature trail” for both tourists and locals, thus encouraging walking tours across the magnificent scenic countryside that this location has to offer.  

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Most Popular "Children Friendly" Restaurants

 

Voted in The Definitive(ly) Good Guide to Restaurants in Malta & Gozo – annual restaurant survey. 

Every year as part of The Definitive(ly) Good Guide to Restaurants in Malta & Gozo regular diners out vote for their favourite ‘children friendly’ restaurant. The top rated restaurant wins the Children Friendly Award sponsored by The Malta Baby & Kids Directory which is presented at the annual Restaurant Awards Ceremony gala dinner.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top Survey rated restaurants as voted by regular diners out:

iPlace  

Mamma Mia   

The Boat House        

The Avenue

The Villa 

Il-Veduta 

Tal-Familja 

Tarragon      

Piccolo Padre   

Medina 

Baia Beach     

Beppe's  

Tal-Kaptan, Waterfront

Stone Crab     

Pintonino

Palio’s 

Le Bistro

Ta' Marija      

Trattoria AD 1530

Ta' Karolina 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

Top Ten Playgrounds in Malta and Gozo

 

Words by Crysta Darmanin – Malta Baby & Kids Directory

As a mother of two children under ten, I consider myself somewhat of an expert when it comes to local playgrounds. At first, whilst living in Sliema, I found that -due to the easy accessibility of the promenade and the choice of local swings, I had become complacent to venture further afield. This was mostly due to the fact that I couldn't bear to lose my hard won parking space! It was only after my second child was born, when we were forced to move out of our tiny flat, in the north of the island, due to lack of space for ride alongs, bicycles and scooters; that I really began to discover which were the top ten playgrounds on  the  island.  Thanks  to  the  embellishment projects part  financed  by EU funding, the options for entertaining our offspring have widened considerably from when I was growing up.

The largest, and one of the newest must be the recently rehabilitated Sant’ Antnin Family Park, built on the site of a former landfill, in Marsaskala. Spread over 80 tumoli of land, this park is sandwiched in between the Inspire Foundation and WasteServ. Next to the visitor’s centre, it boasts ample parking, in front of which children are immediately drawn to the rock climbing wall, which requires pre-booking. A short distance uphill, through hedge mazes, leads you to various playgrounds for a variety of ages and abilities, including an outdoor gym and picnic area. The feeling of wide, open space is unparalleled in Malta, and there is surely something for everyone to enjoy. Next to the older children’s play area, a small but popular football field is located and further down you get to the equestrian area and Dog Park. This vast expanse of open space is an unusual find in Malta, and it has the added bonus of rarely feeling overcrowded. There are also some new water features as an added bonus for the children, and the young at heart!

Slightly smaller in size, but packed with exciting equipment and ample opportunities to get soaked -the B.O.V  Adventure  Park  in  Ta’ Qali is  very popular, especially at the weekends. This playground is grouped into areas for various ages and abilities, and the equipment is fun and safe. The turfed area is attractive to families with infants, and sunbathing  couples. Their walk-  through fountain is one of the main attractions of this playground, so remember to pack a swimsuit, change of clothes and waterproof shoes for the kids, when you visit! The lack of shaded areas means that this park becomes a ghost town during the day in the summertime, but springs back to life by late afternoon. It’s proximity to Ta’ Qali National park, which makes an ideal spot for a picnic, and the Petting Zoo ensure that a visit to this playground could easily be extended  into a  fun, family day out. Contrary to most local playgrounds, the  Ta’ Qali Adventure Park boasts a cafeteria, with outdoor seating and ample toilet facilities. Although bicycles, scooters and skates are not permitted in the park-they may be ridden just over the fence in the picnic area. At the back of the park are an outdoor gym and five-a-side football area, where you will often find ice-cream and doughnut vendors. Parking just outside the entrance, on both exits of the park, helps make this park a hassle free outing for all concerned.

The Buġibba promenade has recently benefitted from a playground just behind the Aquarium, which is in keeping with the nautical theme. It has climbing  frames, swing sets and slides which are located conveniently close to the cafeteria in Pjazza San Pawl, where parents may enjoy relaxing with a cup of tea, whilst still keeping a watchful eye on their offspring. The views of the open sea make for an idyllic setting. Since this playground is the relatively ‘new kid on the block’, it is best avoided at the weekends, until the novelty wears off; and is rather unpleasant on blustery days, due to its lack of shelter from the prevailing winds.

Pembroke boasts one of the best playgrounds in the north of Malta, set in a picturesque valley down by the water’s edge, and ample easy access parking.  It  is  recommended  to  take  your  child’s  favorite personal  mode  of  transport  with  you  when  you  visit-bicycles, scooters,  roller  blades  or  skateboards-depending  on  their  age;  as there is a wide, open amphitheatre conveniently located adjacent to the  car  park.  To  one  side  lies  a  sand  football  pitch,  which unfortunately  bears  the  brunt  of  littering  and  is  quite  pebbly,  and turns  into  slime  post-  rainfall  –  but  do  take  your own  ball  if  your child  is  partial  to  joining in  the  beautiful  game. On the lower level lies a state-of-the art playground for young children, with equipment combining firm favorites-such as a roundabout, with innovative equipment –like the swinging disc. On the upper level, accessible either from the steep stairway or via the ramp around  the side, there is a landscaped garden space unlike anything which  I have come across locally. Therein lies a small play area for toddlers, a stream meandering through grassy rocks and a shaded seating area for the grownups. Favorite activities of my children are to attempt to skim rocks across the man-made river -and hop across the stones through the water until one of them falls in! The toilet facilities are fantastic, and well kept. Adults can take a load off since their children will keep themselves busy skipping alongside the stream. Unfortunately, there are two glaringly obvious downsides to this park. Firstly, the water feature is sporadically switched off, thus turning  the  stagnant water into a smelly swamp which  attracts mosquitoes and  is a health  hazard. Secondly, and most predominantly, the obvious lack of refreshments available necessitates the need to take provisions with you. Authorities take note- what us mum’s want from an outing is a cup of tea and the newspaper while the kids waste their energy! Though occasionally the doughnut van shows up and does a roaring trade in take-away hot beverages served in tiny Styrofoam cups.

With toddlers, finding a suitable playground can be a challenge, therefore it is best to try and find small areas which cater specifically for the under five’s.  One  such playground  is  located  in  St.Andrew’s  garden,  next  to  the  tennis court. The area is enclosed by fencing, and the gate entrance is kept closed to deter the rugrats from running into the street. Large, low, plastic  equipment is  easy  to  use  and  safe,  and  many  parents  bring small  ride  alongs  and  bubble  mix  to  keep  the  kids  entertained. Mummies be warned though-bringing along your own refreshments is a must! 

Another small village gem is the Ħal Lija Park, located in the heart of its quiet residential area. A very conscientious park attendant keeps the place up to scratch. Located inside the playground, you will find a tennis court and a bowls pitch. There is no need to bring a football with you, as there are plenty to choose from in the sought after pitch. The usual fare of swings sets and winding slides is set in a lovely garden, complete with traditional Maltese café serving ‘te fit-tazza’ (tea in a glass). 

A hidden gem which I happened upon, quite by accident, is the public playground in Paola. The surrounding trees provide some shade and the large space hosts a variety of imposing, modern jungle gyms, playhouses and climbing frames, molded into fantastical shapes. This playground is really a feather in the cap of the East of the island, where previously public spaces were frequented by unsavory characters, whose litter rendered the area unsafe for children. In contrast, Ġnien Pawlu Boffa is a top notch playground.

On the Coast Road, across from the water park in Baħar iċ-Ċaqgħaq, in a modest square parallel to the main road, lies a lovely little area just in front of the local parish church. The main attraction here is the water installations-so parents, be warned and bring bathers, a towel and possibly some flip-flops along with you for your charges. Herein you will find a modern take on jungle gyms, playhouses and swing sets. The playground is located in a residential area, but seems to attract an older age group, which helps keep the noise level to a minimum.

Sliema residents are spoilt for choice with the latest addition to public spaces at Ix-Xatt ta' qui-Si-Sana. George Bonello Du Puis garden is excavated below street level, providing shelter from the prevailing winds, as well as minimizing the effect of the imposing structures. The outdoor gym equipment is surrounded by grassy hills, providing visitors with a rare opportunity to lie on the grass, and their children find it all the better to roll down the hills! High webbed climbing frames, infants’ teddy bear reclining swings sets and a fountain sprouting from the ground make this the most sought after outing in the northeast of the island for a spot of family fun. Mobile kiosks and coffee shops are within easy reach of this playground. The older playground on the Sliema promenade, next to it-Torri, pales in comparison to this shiny new addition. 

An inventory of recreational spaces for families would not be complete without giving our sister island a mention. Close to Ramla l-Ħamra, lies a peaceful playground, where the old style basketball game provides entertainment for children of all ages. The quaint swing sets, slides and see-saws near Ġgantija are in sharp contrast to the recently refurbished, spacious Xagħra playground, complete with roundabout and plastic climbing frame for the kids. Last but definitely not least, the public area in Munxar deserves a special mention for its excellent climbing frame, swing sets and outdoor gym - a vain attempt to encourage the grown-ups to work out, no doubt!

To recap, Malta's public areas have really come a long way from the decrepit swing sets, merry-go-rounds, slides and see-saws of the previous millennium. Nowadays, the sophistication of the equipment has risen to meet families’ high expectations. Modern playgrounds aim to give better quality of life to busy parents, as well as embellish their surroundings, while providing safe, recreational spaces for families to visit.

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

Malta Tourism Authority events

 

Victoria International festival - music for all

 

11/06/2014 - 17/07/2014 Victoria - Gozo 

In Guardia Parade - Historical re-enactment of a military drill

 

06/07/2014 Vittoriosa (Birgu)

Malta Artisan Markets - A market of hand made food, arts & crafts

 

06/07/2014 La Laguna, Smart City

Maritime Senglea International Festival - A city of History, Culture and Traditions

 

11/09/2014- 14/09/2014 Senglea (L-Isla) 

Malta Artisan Markets - A market of hand-made food, arts & crafts

 

12/09/2014-13/09/2014 Senglea (L-Isla) Waterfront

A Night in 'Casal Fonraro' - The baker's village

 

20/09/2014 Hal Qormi 

In Guardia Parade - Historical re-enactment of a military drill

 

21/09/2014  Vittoriosa (Birgu) 

Żejt Iż- Zejtun - A folklore event celebrating the start of the olive picking season

 

27/09/2014-28/09/2014  Zejtun

In Guardia Parade - Historical re-enactment of a military drill

 

28/09/2014 Vittoriosa (Birgu)

Notte Bianca - Largest festival in Valletta

 

 04/10/2014 Valletta

The Mdina Grand Prix 2014 - The annual event of competitive motorsport

 

09/10/2014-12/10/2014 Mdina

Birgufest - The city of Vittoriosa relives its past

 

10/10/2014-12/10/2014 Vittoriosa (Birgu)

L-lmqabba - Biss Bil-Ħila - Musċi, food, entertainment, games and traditions 

 

12/10/2014  lmqabba 

Military Mtarfa - Celebrating Mtarfa's military history

 

18/10/2014  Mtarfa 

The Rolex Middle Sea Race - The offshore classic of the Med

 

18/10/2014  All Maltese Islands 

Chocolate Festival - A chocoholic's delight!

 

18/10/2014  Hamrun

Festa Fuħħar - Pottery Festival - Crafts, food, music and entertainment

 

18/10/2014 Birkikara 

Allarme - Historic re-enactment a full military parade

 

19/10/2014  Vittoriosa (Birgu) 

In Guardia Parade - Historical re-enactment of a military drill

26/10/2014 Vittoriosa (Birgu) 
     
     

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

"Blue Flag" beaches in the Maltese Islands

 

Words by Andrea Critien - Malta Baby & Kids Directory

Over  recent  years  The  Malta  Tourism  Authority  (MTA)  has  taken  the  role  of  beach management around a number of local beaches.  To meet international standards in safety, bathing  water  quality,  services  and  environmental  awareness,  the  Blue  Flag  requires applying 100% of the BLUE FLAG criteria and the Beach of Quality (BOQ) requires 70%. Through sustainable beach management operations, locals and tourists benefit from the good use of the coast while respecting the natural environment. 

The Blue Flag Programme helps in highlighting the beach product to international recognition.  It helps to encourage achieving higher results in water quality and the overall awareness of the coastal eco system.  It is operated by FEE (Federation of Environmental Education) represented in Malta by Nature Trust.   Malta joined the BLUE FLAG Programme in 2006 with St George’s Bay and achieving the first Blue Flag in 2009. To date awards have been achieved for: 

 

 

1. St. Georges Bay (SGB) - Blue Flag

2. Bugibba Perched Beach (BPB) - Blue Flag

3. Mellieha Bay (MB) - Blue Flag

4. Qawra Point - Blue Flag

5. Ramla l-Hamra (Gozo)- Blue Flag

6. Għajn Tuffieha - Blue Flag

7. Golden Bay (GB) - Beach of Quality

8. Fond Ghadir - Blue Flag

9. Paradise Bay Hotel Resort Cirkewwa- Blue Flag

Blue Flag Awards help in giving our beaches a professional outlook on an international level standard. 

To keep abreast with any updates please log onto http://www.mta.com.mt/blueflag

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

Be responsible in the sun

 

Always apply sun protection generously, 15 to 30 minutes before sun exposure. Any less, radically reduces the protection effect. Even sun protection with high SPF does not grant full protection. Keep babies and young children out of direct sunlight and protect them with a high sun protection factor (> SPF30) and appropriate clothing.  Avoid midday sun. Generally one application is sufficient but consider another application after extensive sweating, swimming or towel drying. 

The normal cocktail of perfume, emulsifiers and preservatives contained in sun protection products may  increase  the  risk  of  sun  allergies  and  "Majorca  acne".  Ultrasun  does  not  use  perfume (exception:  After  Sun,  Daily  UV  Hair  Protector),  emulsifiers  or  preservatives  (thanks  to  their "airless" dispensers). The "airless" dispensers also enable you to use 100% of the product inside and ensure that the product has a long shelf life of 24 months after first being opened.  The gel lotions based on liposome technologies (Family, Glimmer, Face SPF30, Face SPF30 tinted, After Sun) and clear sports formulas offer a unique, non-sticky sensation on the skin and are easily absorbed.  Furthermore,  despite  their  high  protection  factors,  the  Face  SPF50+  and  Extreme SPF50+ formulas also offer a particularly pleasant consistency that is not too thick. Your personal sun account tells you the maximum length of time you should expose your skin to the sun each day. Each separate period of time you spend in the sun adds up over the course of 24 hours. Reflection means that even in the shade your account is continuously debited.

 

ULTRASUN professional Sun Protection is locally distributed by A.M.Mangion Ltd.

Available from leading pharmacies.

For more information: www.ultrasun.ch or www.ammangion.com.mt - T;23976000

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

Family Fun

 

Words by Crysta Darmanin  - Malta Baby & Kids Directory

The Maltese Islands have endless visitor attractions, activities and events to keep children entertained and not always at a huge expense. We asked Crysta Darmanin our Malta Baby & Kids team member to suggest her favourite choices to take children aged five and eight and family in Malta.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make a splash and participate in water based sports such as snorkeling and fishing which don't cost more than the price of the equipment needed.

Sporadically, on a Sunday or Public Holiday, Heritage Malta opens its museums and galleries to the public for free. 

Chadwick lakes are always fun, especially after the rain, though the catching of tadpoles is no longer permissible! 

Malta’s clement weather ensures that the opportunity to organise picnics amongst like minded friends is plentiful, and Melita Salina Gardens are the new kids on the block for this free family outing. 

While it may be a challenge for cyclists to find safe places to ride, the skate park in University roundabout is strictly for the older bunch of thrill seekers, who prefer to practice their moves on trick bikes and skateboards. 

Pet lovers may take their canine companion to the Dog Park, either in Ta' Qali or Marsaskala. 

During the summer holidays, Buġibba promenade opens up a free water park-which features differently coloured sections, reflecting the height and age of the children. At certain times of day there may possibly be a queue, but since each session lasts twenty minutes before the next turnover, the wait is not long and a visit to the water park is certainly worthwhile!

A day wandering around Valletta, a UNESCO world heritage site, is not just for tourists-and children love feeding (or chasing!) the pigeons at Upper Barrakka Gardens. 

The newly opened Majjistral Nature and History Park, next to Golden Bay, is freely accessible on foot and is the perfect place for exploring, with gorgeous views over the bay. 

Buskett Gardens, a unique small but lovely woodland, is perfect for a spring time day out with the kids. 

Mdina is as safe as houses for children, since the roads are open only to residents and due to the meandering streets the few cars which do drive in are extremely cautious. 

Carnival in February is a treat for children who enjoy a noisy atmosphere, especially those who enjoy dressing up in fancy costumes, and nothing beats watching the floats and grotesque masks parade down Floriana in the Gran Finale. 

Gozo's coastlines like that at Dwerja with the Azure Window and Fungus Rock, or the weather worn shapes on the coast at Qbajjer, make for great excursions for all the family, especially at sunset. 

The Kitchen Garden across from San Anton public gardens in Lija has recently been extended, and offers plenty of free entertainment for youngsters.

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Top Ten Best Beaches for Children in Malta and Gozo

 

Words by Crysta Darmanin - Malta Baby & Kids Directory

The Maltese archipelago has a wealth of both rocky and sandy beach options for families to choose from. Locals and visitors alike are spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing which beach to go to for a relaxing family day out. During the summertime we take to the beaches in our droves, and despite our best efforts to avoid the midday sun, weekends tend to mean long, hot days frolicking by the seaside. Children seem to like nothing better than the combination of water and sand to play in-especially as they are given a free reign to get as messy and wet as they desire!

It is worth trying to make it down to the beach as early in the season as the weather permits-even if the sea is too cold to take a dip in. My favorite months for going down by the sea are May and October; the former because school going children will be gearing up for exams and the latter as locals tend to get bored of the beach by then. Luckily, the plentiful Maltese public holidays present ample opportunities for day trips to Gozo, and a visit to some lovely seaside picnic spots. Mġarr ix-Xini is a quiet inlet located between Xewkija and Sannat. The small pebble bay is set in a cosy gorge surrounded by cliffs and caves. It’s crystal clear water makes this an ideal spot for snorklers and divers to explore a variety of caves tunneling their way through the steep, rocky cliff face. The Mġarr ix-Xini kiosk serves up fresh catch of the day in an atmosphere which is hard to beat, and extremely child-friendly.

Back to Malta, underneath the Aquarium lies a small shack of Ta' Fra Ben. This modest venue is a great place to sit and have an ice-cream, or if their limited outdoor space is full, take a hobża and a drink down to one of the numerous stone benches dotted around the rocky hill, descending into the bay. The real attraction here is the view, looking out watching the sun set over the tiny island a few meters out to sea. A concrete path leading down to a ladder makes swimming easier than risking tender winter soles on the jagged rocks jutting out treacherously. This is an ideal spot for an early evening swim, although it may be difficult to persuade your children that it’s time to leave!

My most cherished sandy beach has got to be the picturesque Ġnejna Bay. The drive down from the village square alone, showcasing Maltese landscape at its best is enough to make you glad that you made the effort. Ample parking, a stone's throw away from the sand, makes it easy to carry down the numerous bags of sand toys and paraphernalia which we mummies inevitably find ourselves carting around on a day out to the seaside. In season, a large raft is anchored in the middle of the bay-so that for those who endeavor to venture out, jumping in and climbing out can while away the time. For those of you who dislike having to wade through seaweed and step over numerous pebbles to enjoy a swim-the short walk to the facing rocks has a ladder hanging down into the sea which may simplify getting wet. A long way off the beaten track, awaits the aptly named Paradise Bay. Best tackled with the aid of some manpower, the eager trudge down to this sandy seashore quickly turns into a sweaty trek upon your departure. The long-standing management of the restaurant and cafe servicing the bay are extremely well organized and endeavor to put their best efforts into making their visitors experience an outstanding one. The sand is raked on a regular basis, toilets and showers are reasonably priced and I have even witnessed staff fishing out jellyfish with a net! Recently the addition of a jellyfish net makes the task of keeping sea pests at bay far easier.

More of a challenge to locate, let alone to get to, the deep blue sea at St. Peter's Pool at Delimara Point is by far the most secluded family friendly seaside spot that I have come across. Pack your trekking boots though, and leave the elderly relatives at home, as the narrow dirt track proves challenging if you encounter a vehicle coming from the opposite direction, and have to face a standoff to see who will be the first to give in and have to reverse the entire length of the road first! I speak from experience as my husband refused to budge when he came bumper to bumper with a pickup truck-and it was only when the two large men pulled out a couple of beers from their picnic cooler that we acknowledged defeat! Be sure to bring everything along with you in a cold storage bag, as there is nowhere to buy anything within the vicinity of the beach. Sporadically, you might come across some enterprising individuals- either selling cold bottles of water in the car park- or hear the welcome fog horn of the ice-cream speed boat meandering along the seashore, or the one who, in my opinion, takes the prize for most original business acumen - the omnipresent doughnut seller- this time trading from his craft in order to offset the cost of his day out! It is a difficult climb through prickly shrub to reach the shade of this smooth rocky bay, but well worth the hassle. Unless you intend to take shelter from the sun under the overhanging rocks around the bay, best bring a portable parasol along also.

Upon setting sight on Blue Lagoon, whether looking around you in awe from aboard a boat, or gazing down in awe from the surrounding Comino hills-you might be forgiven for thinking that you may have inadvertently landed on a film set. Just out of season, a youth charitable institution organizes round trip kayak tours from Paradise Bay to the Blue Lagoon - by far the best way to visit Comino with your kids! The arduous crossing is rewarded with a long awaited plunge into the refreshing waters of the Blue Lagoon, with just enough time to explore the caves and climb to the top of the hill overlooking the tiny patch of sand-before heading back again. The children can tandem with an adult, and enjoy the challenge as they tend to think of it as a 'race' rather than a marathon, thus bringing out their competitive streak! Also, the added bonus of toned biceps goes down very well with the parents.

For those of you who like to do a little something more than just swim, Blue Grotto in Wied iż-Zurrieq has short boat trips around the surrounding caves, which provide family fun for both young and old alike. The shoreline of the inland sea has been covered by smooth concrete, and swimming is marred by the boats mooring a little too close for comfort. The real attractions here are underwater- so strap on your flippers and snorkel and take your young ones through the cave to the open sea! 

The largest sandy beach , divided into three sections , it is easy to see why Mellieħa has become an obvious choice for Sunday beach day outings, when up to three generations of relatives meet up for some summer fun. Parking can be difficult during the high season, so it is worth getting there early to secure a place along the promenade. Every local family has their favorite spot on the sand-and ours is alongside the Adira Sailing Club-where we hire sun beds and an umbrella and take turns sitting around the tables reading the weekend newspapers. The children run wild way out into the sea, going from shallow to deeper back to shallow once more before the sandy sea bed becomes too deep to reach. On shore, sandcastle competitions compete with burying each other in the sand and just standing still while tiny fish oblige you with a pedicure! The best time to go is a late afternoon on a weekday, as this popular beach can easily become crowded. The floating water gym is a great alternative to the usual sandy beach pursuits, as are the paddle boats for hire. We stay in the vicinity of the bar, with facilities and a snack bar downstairs, and an outdoor seating restaurant upstairs.

Once again our sister island wins hands down in the sandy beach category with the much renowned Ramla il-Ħamra. This long stretch of red sand is surrounded to one side by hills , offering trekking opportunities for the more adventurous children who wish to explore the craggy rocks jutting out near the shore close up. The refectory style tables set amongst large trees offer much needed shade and a couple of nearby cafes ensure you will not go hungry. Another top notch sandy beach-especially for a springtime picnic where the kids will keep themselves entertained and busy without much assistance from your end!

Mistra Bay, accessible by car via a detour leading off the main road from Xemxija to Mellieħa, has a considerably less touristy vibe than most of the other local sandy beaches, as you will need your own transport to reach it. Driving uphill from the sandy beach, make like a local and abandon the car wherever takes your fancy to walk down-lock, stock and barrel-to the rugged water's edge. Quiet and great for those who don't mind roughing it, the steep cliff edge makes jumping in to the sparkling Mediterranean the easiest way to access the cool, clear water. Portable parasol, plenty of water and snacks are necessary to turn this off the beaten track experience into a successful family excursion.

It is thanks to the picturesque surroundings of local beaches, coupled with the peace of mind that the safety of the surrounding Mediterranean Sea has to offer, which help to make The Maltese Islands a dream beach destination for locals and tourists alike. 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Essential Check Lists for kids

 

Essential Check Lists

Being organised is the name of the game if you want to enjoy quality time with your kids while ensuring  they are set up to have fun times and happy memories with their friends. Andrea Critien a Malta Baby & Kids team member and mum of two, John aged 10 and Kristina aged 18 has put together some essential check lists which will assist you with this task!   

And do take a look at page  for ideas on how to entertain your children on car journeys. These games can also be utilised on the day and will add to the fun!

 

SLEEP OVER CHECK LIST

Is your child going to spend the night at his or her friend’s house? This list will help you to pack everything your child needs for this very special event:

-          Sleeping bag

-          Pillow

-          Teddy bear or a favourite comfort toy

-          Pyjamas

-          Flashlight

-          Slippers

-          Clothing for the next day (underwear, socks, top, shorts or pants and sweatshirt or jacket)

-          Toiletry bag (toothbrush, toothpaste, towel, soap, shampoo, hair brush or comb)

-          Medicine, if necessary

-          Glasses or contact lenses, if necessary

-          Phone or contact numbers

 

PICNIC CHECK LIST

Planning a picnic with your children? This picnic list will help you not to forget the essential 
items and enjoy a great time out with family and friends:

-          Blanket or picnic mat

-          Wet wipes or kitchen roll

-          Forks, spoons, plates and cups

-          Knife

-          Food (such as finger food, kids love it)

-          Cold beverages and water

-          Rubbish bag

-          Some toys like a ball

-          Suncream, if hot weather, and hats!


BEACH CHECK LIST

Planning a fun day at the beach with the children? Here are some things to bring to ensure a safe and enjoyable outing:

-          Sun protection (sun cream, sunglasses, hat and spare t-shirt)

-          Swim suit

-          Armbands

-          Swim nappies for the smallest ones

-          Towels

-          Slippers

-          Beach toys (bucket and spade)

-          Water

-          Complete change of clothes

-          Shelter or sun umbrella

 

HIKING CHECK LIST

If you are thinking of taking your children on a hiking trip? Here are the ten essentials for safety, survival and basic comfort:

-          Map and compass

-          Sun protection (sun cream, sunglasses and hat)

-          Insulation (warm clothing in winter and a light vest in summer)

-          Flashlight

-          First-aid kit and some wet wipes and tissues

-          Matches or lighter

-          Knife or multi-tool

-          Food (biscuits, some fresh and dried fruits)

-          Water bottles

-          Shelter (tent or tarp)

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

25 Great Things to do with the Kids

 

The Maltese Islands are steeped in history waiting to be explored…

1. Go Cave hunting and discover the earliest evidence of human settlement 144 metres down (though only the first 50 are open to visitors) at Ghar Dalam in the South of Malta where you can view the life size skeleton of a prehistoric dinosaur.  Open Mon to Sun 9am to 5pm. www.heritagemalta.com

2. Step into Indiana Jones’ shoes and go Temple hunting and explore some of the oldest temples in the world including Hagar Qim or Mnajdra in Qrendi. Once in the area you can go on an exploration and walk down along the cliffs to Wied iz-Zurrieq (valley) for a snack at one of the local bars. Look out for the photo of the 26-foot great white shark which was caught off the coast only 20 years ago! 

3. Go on a Roman trail… and visit the Dumvs Romana and St Paul’s or St Agatha’s Catacombs in Rabat or San Pawl Milqi in Burmarrad (this site is open only by appointment), or the Roman Baths at Ghajn Tuffieha. www.heritagemalta.com

4. Step into the Knights of Malta boots and visit the Grand Masters Palace and armoury packed to the gills with armour, swords, helmets and halberds – a spectacular arms collection bound to impress young aspiring Knights.  www.heritagemalta.com

5. See how Malta’s nobility lived and visit Palazzo Falson in Mdina – there are guided tours tailored for children or visit the delightful Casa Roca Piccola in Valletta. www.palazzofalson.com,

 www.casaroccapiccola.com

6. For aspiring soldiers a visit to Fort Rinella in Kalkara is a must! Malta’s liveliest museum where history comes to life daily from Monday to Sunday at 2.30pm sharp. Volunteers dressed as late 19th century Victorian soldiers will take visitors on an animated tour around the fort. This tour combines excellent guiding with lively and colourful historical re-enacting. The tour starts with the firing of an original Victorian cannon (which you can also fire!). This is followed by a live demonstration of how the fort would have been defended during an attack. The group is then directed into the fort only to be challenged by the sentry guarding the gate! More displays will take place inside the fort including military signalling, firing of rifles, bayonet practice, military cooking and more. Much use of original period equipment and weapons is made throughout this tour. Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 9.30am- 5.00pm. Catch bus no 4 to the Fort from Valletta. www.wirtartna.com

7. See how kids lived and survived during the 2nd world war in underground air raid shelters built beneath the Vittoriosa bastions at Couvre Port. If you are feeling peckish stop and have a snack along the marina or at one of the bars within the city square. Open 9.30am - 4pm. www.birgu.gov.mt 

Planes, perhaps no trains but boats and automobiles…. 

8. Flying machines once flown by magnificent men can be viewed at the Malta Aviation Museum located on the site of Ex. RAF Station Ta' Qali (aka Ta' Kali). Try your hand at the controls of a BAC 1-11 passenger aircraft and walk around the restored and preserved war aircraft including a spitfire, tiger moth and Hawker hurricane. Catch bus 86 from Bugibba, bus 65 from St Julians bus terminus and bus 80 & 81 from Valletta. Bus Route number 65 is located just outside the Malta Aviation Museum Complex. Bus Numbers 80, 81 & 86 stop 7 minutes walk away from the museum, follow installed directions throughout the way. Opening Times: Monday to Sunday 9am to 5pm except Good Friday, Easter Sunday, 15 August, Christmas Day & New Year’s Day. www.maltaaviationmuseum.com

9. Ahoy captain!  Jump on board a traditional local frejgatina wooden boat and sail across Grand Harbour, departing from next to Customs House in Floriana to Vittoriosa marina.  Once on the marina visit Malta’s maritime museum housed in the former British Naval Bakery. There are several exciting exhibit rooms including the engine room machinery of the Anadrian, a steam-driven grab dredger built in 1951 for Malta. You can see a collection of detailed ship replicas and paintings illustrating 19th and 20th century vessels, together with an array of colourful ship badges organised into thematic and chronological sectors as well as navigational charts, nautical instruments, weapons, uniforms, anchors, maps, models and other artefacts dating from 1530 to 1798. An entire room is dedicated to traditional Maltese sea crafts and other objects that indicate popular traditions and Malta’s long-standing maritime vocation. Open daily: 9am-5pm; Last admission: 4.30pm. Closed: 24, 25 & 31 December, 1 January, Good Friday. www.heritagemalta.com

10. Brmm, Brmm, Toot, Toot your heart out at the Malta Classic Car Museum which covers approximately 3000sqm and is jam-packed with over eighty cars and motorcycles.  The premises also houses a cinema, a comfortable cafeteria, gift shop, thousands of model cars and memorabilia. The museum is situated quite close to the Qawra bus terminus, in Tourist Street, Qawra. Open Mon to Fri 9am-6pm.  Saturday & Public Holidays 9am-2pm www.classiccarsmalta.com. Bus No’s. from Valletta  49, 58, 59, 449, 499. Bus No’s. from Sliema 70, 652.

11. For Bob the Builders of this world…discover how Maltese houses were built. The Limestone Heritage in Siggiewi traces the progress of Maltese culture throughout the ages, as seen through the different buildings, monuments and artefacts carved in stone, dating back to the very first free-standing structures of 5,000 years ago. You can also carve your own souvenir in stone and keep it as a memento of your visit!  Open Mon to Fri 9am - 3pm, Saturday 9am – 12pm, Sunday 9am-11.30am. Catch bus 89 from Valletta Terminus.  www.limestoneheritage.com.

12. For the aspiring detective why not pay a visit to the relatively unknown, meticulously set up Police and Crime Museum at the Police HQ in Floriana. You can join a guided tour given by the Curator who will give a detailed explanation of every object on show.  Open Mon-Fri 9am-4pm.  Tel: 2122 4001

13. Head for Gozo and enjoy a 5 to 6 hour fishing programme with expert Gozitan fishermen who will give you tips and show you techniques in this popular sport.  You can either board their brightly painted 'Luzzu' fishing boats, bearing the Phoenician 'eye of Osiris' on the prow or else, if you are a small group, you can sail the 'frejgatina'. The programme includes deft techniques in bait-fishing and 'finger fishing', using a pliable rod three to five meters long, not necessarily with a reel. The boat trip can be arranged for the morning (usually from 9am until 3pm) or for an afternoon (usually 4pm until 9pm). A morning programme would usually start with a meeting, and then head off to the seashore to fish, a boat ride by the cliffs and in one of the impressive caves together with a traditional lunch with the fishermen. As for your catch? Take it home with you or cook it fresh there and then! www.ambjentahjar.org 

Get active…

14. Feel the wind in your sails and learn to sail it’s real fun and now it can be done by everyone! Various clubs around the island accept children from about the age of 8 up. Best to call and check in advance, look up Sailing in Sports Activities within the director.

15. Fancy meeting Neptune down in the depths of Malta’s Mediterranean sea – try a scuba diving session from one of the scuba diving centres. Some clubs accept kids from the age of 8 years but best to call and check in advance. (Scuba Diving in Sports Activities).

Get in touch with nature… 

16. Trek through Malta’s beautiful countryside and go on a one and a half hour guided nature walk at il-Majjistral Nature and History Park. Walks start at 10am near the Golden Bay bus terminus and finish there around 12.30pm. Bookings can be made on walks@majjistral.org 

17. Take a hands-on approach to farming and experience an idyllic day in the tranquil life of a local shepherd with your own hands-on involvement in the feeding and milking of the sheep as well as your input in the process of Gozitan cheese-making. Depending on the season, you may assist or observe manual sheep shearing up close. An authentic traditional lunch with your host is included in this event, featuring a wide variety of local produce ranging from Gozitan cheese, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, crusty oven baked bread and a rich local dish ensuring that your day will be a memorable one! Organised by the Ager Foundation www.ambjentahjar.org 

18. Muck in and visit a traditional Maltese farm and organise a group of at least 10 to visit the huge selection of animals at Ghammieri Farm including ponies, horses, goats, sheep, cows and birds. Take a picnic and let your kids play on the swings there. Definitely worth a visit. You will need to phone ahead and book your trip.  Open between 8am and 12.30pm daily.  www.mrah.gov.mt 

19. Go Bird Watching at Bird Life’s Ghadira Nature Reserve in Mellieha, next to Malta’s most popular sandy beach. This reserve is of ecological importance since it’s a wetland and salt marsh habitat. This area is a haven for birds and the protection it enjoys ensures that as the seasons change, Ghadira hosts a variety of animal and plant life, some of which are rare and endangered and given special protection by the European Union. From November to May, Ghadira and Is-Simar reserves are open to the public. BirdLife volunteers lead guided walks along the nature trail. Open Saturdays & Sundays from 10am-4pm. Public Transport from/to Valletta: Buses 44 & 45. Bird Life Malta also have their own kids & teens club which organises nature activities, most of which are outdoors, like bird watching, hiking, tree-planting, boat trips and visits to nature reserves. Teenage members also go camping, bike-hiking and night hiking. www.birdlifemalta.org 

20. Marvel at the beautiful falcons at the Malta Falconry Centre and learn about these birds of prey and Malta's ancient falconry tradition which dates back to the 13th century when emperors from all over Europe sent their royal falconers to get the highly prized Maltese falcons. In the aviary collection you may see a peregrine falcon, a vulture as well as a bald eagle. Display times are at 11am and 2pm. The facility has ample parking, an outdoor picnic area of approximately 9600 squared metres as well as a cafeteria. www.maltafalconrycentre.com  

21. Delve into the world of bugs and beasties at the Museum of Natural History in Mdina, housed in the 18th century Magisterial Palace of Justice. There you can see important collections which hold over 10,000 rocks and minerals, over 3,500 birds, bird's eggs and nests, 200 mammals, over 200 fish species, thousands of local and exotic shells and insects. The fossil collection is also worth looking at, it contains a number of large fish, numerous species of sea urchins and other marine fauna found embedded in limestone rocks. Open Monday to Sunday: 9am-5pm; Last admission: 16.30. Closed: 24, 25 & 31 December, 1 January & Good Friday. 

22. Make Malta Green and participate in the 34U campaign – book your family on a tree planting activity. www.mrah.gov.mt 

23. Sand castles are fun throughout the year. We’re blessed with great weather provided wind is not blowing strongly! And above all it’s free of charge and during the winter you’ll probably have an entire beach to yourself! So go for it … whilst there you can let the kids get all messy with their paints – all they need is to gather some pebbles or shells or whatever takes their fancy and let their imagination run free.

Get Cooking…

24. The Hilton’s Executive Chef Joe Vella and his team will teach your little ones how to prepare a packed lunch (much needed), picnic food and party food for all those parties to be had. Cookery classes are held between May and September for children aged 8 to 12. Check out other exciting cookery classes in Malta.

Get Creative…

25. Get hands on and go to a pottery class and create something fantastic to take home.  Look up various classes in the Art, Craft & Pottery classes in the Activities section.

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

23 GREAT THINGS TO DO WITH THE KIDS

 

Venture into the Great Outdoors… 

Trek through Malta’s beautiful countryside and go on an organised walk or treasure hunt with Nature Trust Malta. www.naturetrustmalta.com

Take a hands-on approach to farming and experience an idyllic day in the tranquil life of a local shepherd with your own hands-on involvement in the feeding and milking of the sheep as well as your input in the process of Gozitan cheese-making. Depending on the season, you may assist or observe manual sheep shearing up close. An authentic traditional lunch with your host is included in this event, featuring a wide variety of local produce ranging from Gozitan cheese, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, crusty oven baked bread and a rich local dish ensuring that your day will be a memorable one. Organised by the Ager Foundation www.agerfoundation.com (page 83).

Muck in and visit a traditional Maltese farm and organise a group of at least 10 to visit the huge selection of animals at Ghammieri Farm (page 84) including ponies, horses, goats, sheep, cows and birds. Take a picnic and let your kids play on the swings. Definitely worth a visit. You will need to phone ahead and book your trip. Open between 8am and 12.30pm daily. www.mrae.gov.mt

Go Bird Watching at Bird Life’s Ghadira Nature Reserve in Mellieha, next to Malta’s most popular sandy beach. This reserve is of ecological importance since it’s a wetland and salt marsh habitat. This area is a haven for birds and the protection it enjoys ensures that, as the seasons change, Ghadira hosts a variety of animal and plant life, some of which are rare and endangered and given special protection by the European Union. From November to May, Ghadira and Is-Simar reserves are open to the public. Bird Life volunteers lead guided walks along the nature trail. Open Saturdays & Sundays from 10am-4pm. Public Transport from/to Valletta: Buses 44 & 45. Bird Life Malta also has its own kids & teens club which organises nature activities, most of which are outdoors, like bird watching, hiking, tree-planting, boat trips and visits to nature reserves. Teenage members also go camping, bike-hiking and night hiking. www.birdlifemalta.org

Marvel at the beautiful falcons at the Malta Falconry Centre and learn about these birds of prey and Malta’s ancient falconry tradition which dates back to the 13th century when emperors from all over Europe sent their royal falconers to get the highly prized Maltese falcons. In the aviary collection you may see a peregrine falcon, a vulture as well as a bald eagle. Display times are at 11am and 2pm. The facility has ample parking, an outdoor picnic area of approximately 9600 square metres as well as a cafeteria. www.maltafalconrycentre.com

Delve into the world of bugs and beasties at the Museum of Natural History in Mdina (page 90), housed in the 18th century Magisterial Palace of Justice. There you can see important collections which hold over 10,000 rocks and minerals, over 3,500 birds, bird’s eggs and nests, 200 mammals, over 200 fish species, thousands of local and exotic shells and insects. The fossil collection is also worth looking at, it contains a number of large fish, numerous species of sea urchins and other marine fauna found embedded in limestone rocks. Open Monday to Sunday: 9am-5pm; Last admission: 4.30pm. Closed: 24, 25 & 31 December, 1 January & Good Friday. 

Sand castles are fun throughout the year. We’re blessed with great weather provided the wind is not blowing too strongly! And above all it’s free of charge and during the winter you’ll probably have an entire beach to yourself. So go for it – while there you can let the kids get all messy with their paints – all they need is to gather some pebbles or shells or whatever takes their fancy and let their imaginations run free.

Planes, perhaps no trains but boats and automobiles…. 

Flying machines once flown by magnificent men can be viewed at the Malta Aviation Museum located on the site of Ex. RAF Station Ta’ Qali (aka Ta’ Kali). Try your hand at the controls of a BAC 1-11 passenger aircraft and walk around the restored and preserved war aircraft including a spitfire, tiger moth and Hawker hurricane. Catch bus 86 from Bugibba, bus 65 from St Julian’s bus terminus and bus 80 & 81 from Valletta. Bus route number 65 is located just outside the Malta Aviation Museum Complex. Bus numbers 80, 81 & 86 stop 7 minutes walk away from the museum, follow displayed directions. Opening Times: Monday to Sunday 9am to 5pm except Good Friday, Easter Sunday, 15 August, Christmas Day & New Year’s Day. www.maltaaviationmuseum.com

Ahoy captain! Jump on board a traditional local frejgatina  wooden boat and sail across Grand Harbour, departing from next to Customs House in Floriana to Vittoriosa marina. Once on the marina visit Malta’s maritime museum housed in the former British Naval Bakery. There are several exciting exhibit rooms including the engine room machinery of the Anadrian, a steam-driven grab dredger built in 1951 for Malta. You can see a collection of detailed ship replicas and paintings illustrating 19th and 20th century vessels, together with an array of colourful ship badges organised into thematic and chronological sectors as well as navigational charts, nautical instruments, weapons, uniforms, anchors, maps, models and other artefacts dating from 1530 to 1798. An entire room is dedicated to traditional Maltese sea crafts and other objects that indicate popular traditions and Malta’s long-standing maritime vocation. Open daily: 9am-5pm; Last admission: 4.30pm. Closed: 24, 25 & 31 December, New Year’s Day & Good Friday. www.heritagemalta.com

Brmm, Brmm, Toot, toot your heart out at the Malta Classic Car Museum which covers approximately 3000sqm and is jam-packed with over eighty cars and motorcycles. The premises also houses a cinema, a comfortable cafeteria, gift shop, thousands of model cars and memorabilia. The museum is situated quite close to the Qawra bus terminus, in Tourist Street, Qawra. Open Monday to Friday 9am-6pm, Saturday & Public Holidays 9am-2pm. Bus no’s from Valletta  49, 58, 59, 449, 499. Bus no’s from Sliema 70, 652. www.classiccarsmalta.com

For trainspotters who are not too fussy, take a trackless train tour from the Roma Villa in Rabat outside Mdina and tour Rabat and the vicinity including Mtarfa for an 8km/30 minute tour. www.melitatrains.com

For the aspiring detective why not pay a visit to the relatively unknown, meticulously set up Police and Crime Museum at the Police HQ in Floriana. You can join a guided tour given by the Curator who will give a detailed explanation of every object on show. Open Monday to Friday 9am-4pm. Tel: 2122 4001

Head for Gozo and enjoy a day exploring the area of Xaghra where you can visit Ggantija one of the oldest temples in the world and then on to Calypso’s cave and Ninu’s cave where you can discover the stalagmites and stalactites and then on to the lovely Toy Museum in the village centre.

Get active…

Feel the wind in your sails and learn to sail it’s really fun and now it can be done by everyone! Various clubs around the island accept children from about the age of 8 years and up. 

Venture to the new Adventure Park in Ta'Qali set on a section of the former runway at Ta'Qali, this exciting new addition to Malta includes an Interactive water fountain where water jets shoot up as children step near them, and a rope course of two storeys high for the older children . 

Fancy meeting Neptune down in the depths of Malta’s Mediterranean sea? Try a scuba diving session from one of the scuba diving centres. Some clubs accept kids from the age of 8 years and up but best to call and check in advance 

The Maltese Islands are steeped in history waiting to be explored… 

Go temple hunting and explore some of the oldest temples in the world including Hagar Qim and Mnajdra Archaeological Park , two of Malta’s most visited prehistoric megalithic temples which both now boast a Visitor Centre equipped with hands-on displays and a family area with educational activities for all the family. www.heritagemalta.com

Go cave hunting and discover the earliest evidence of human settlement 144 metres down (though only the first 50 are open to visitors) at Ghar Dalam in the south of Malta where you can view the life size skeleton of a prehistoric dinosaur. Open Monday to Sunday 9am to 5pm. www.heritagemalta.com

Get scared silly and go on a small group tour, especially designed for kids aged 6 to 15 years, of the ancient cities of Malta including Valletta, Mdina and Birgu and hear spooky stories of days of old when Knights were bold. www.yourmaltaguide.com

Step into the boots of the Knights of Malta and visit the Grand Master’s Palace and armoury packed to the gills with armour, swords, helmets and halberds – a spectacular arms collection bound to impress young aspiring Knights. www.heritagemalta.com

For aspiring soldiers a visit to Fort Rinella in Kalkara is a must! Malta’s liveliest museum where history comes to life daily from Monday to Sunday at 2.30pm sharp. Volunteers dressed as late 19th century Victorian soldiers will take visitors on an animated tour around the fort. This tour combines excellent guiding with lively and colourful historical re-enacting. The tour starts with the firing of an original Victorian cannon (which you can also fire!). This is followed by a live demonstration of how the fort would have been defended during an attack. The group is then directed into the fort only to be challenged by the sentry guarding the gate. More displays will take place inside the fort including military signalling, firing of rifles, bayonet practice, military cooking and more. Much use of original period equipment and weapons is made throughout this tour. Opening Times: Monday - Sunday: 9am to 5pm. Catch bus no 4 to the Fort from Valletta. www.wirtartna.com

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

Fun and exciting ideas to keep your kids entertained

 

From the time a child learns to walk confidently he is engaged in boisterous activity. Apart from burning up surplus energy he is practicing and improving his running, climbing or pedalling skills.
Constructive play building bricks, stacking one on the other and interlocking them
Solving a puzzle requires mental dexterity 
Children enjoy splashing paint on paper. This fun activity prepares them for drawing and writing.
Learning to love a story – the parents’ role in introducing books is an important one. Do not confuse reading with teaching. Every child should be surrounded by colourful and attractive books in the home and these should be easily accessible so they can be taken without asking. Read to the child from their books and ensure they are sitting next to you to see the written work and the pictures. Do not be afraid to read a story over and over again. Children love repetition and enjoy certain parts of vivid and colourful words.  Children have retentive memories for stories  and can remember word for word what is being said to them in story form.  They will apparently read from a book because they have memorised the contents of the page. This is the beginning of reading.
On fine warm days try keeping your child absorbed through outdoor play. Simple home made toys are fun for both parent and child. Try building your own toys from cardboard boxes such as castles or tunnels. You can fill these up with windows to peep through keeping your child absorbed through out.
Most young children take easily to water and an inflatable pool in the garden will help to prepare them for their first visit to the beach or swimming pool.  They should not, however, be left unsupervised.
A home-made swing: an old car tyre makes a safer swing than the conventional type with its hard seat. A tyre with a single rope is also easier to fix in position and cost much less!
Dressing up : imitation of adults is part of a child’s development. Children love wearing cast-off clothing. Stack these items carefully. The length of the garments should be adjusted for them not to trip over. Reject clothes with cords around the neck and shoes that are too big or have high heels.  Ideally dressing-up clothes should be kept on hangers, because an untidy assortment of creased garments jumbled in a box will not inspire creative play.
Past games like hopscotch, ring a ring a roses, chasing games, chain and circle dancing, marbles and skipping, ball games.
 
Indoor party ideas:

 

Follow my leader (age 4 upwards) Pass the Parcel (age 4 upwards)
Musical Chairs (age 4 upwards) Jumping the River (age 4 upwards)
Musical Lucky Dip (age 4 – 10) Jumble Sale (age 4 upwards)
Ball in a Bucket (age 4 upwards) Fish Race (age 4 – 10)
Bunny Hop aka Kangaroo Relay (age 5 – 7) Over the River (age 5 – 11)

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

Is your pool baby safe?

 

Parents today should be aware of the potential danger their backyard swimming pool poses to young children. 
Statistics show that drowning is the leading cause of accidental death among children under age 5. We can’t imagine the traumatic circumstance of losing one’s child to drowning. Due to the severity of the pool drowning problem, parents need to be aware of their options for preventing their child from reaching the swimming pool. Most experts including the American Academy of Pediatrics agree that a barrier fence around the swimming pool (pool fence) represents the safest option for keeping your little ones safe. Using a pool fence as the necessary pool barrier to prevent access to the swimming pool provides the following advantages:
 
 
1. A pool fence prevents your child from reaching the pool. 
2. A barrier pool fence allows others to use the swimming pool while keeping younger children safe and      away from the pool.
3. You are still able to enjoy the beauty of the water. 
4. Cleaning of the pool is easier compared with swimming pool covers 
 
Protect-A-Child's removable mesh pool fence gives parents the best of all worlds. It provides excellent protection for children, is very attractive, and can be installed in a variety of configurations while being fully removable. 
 
With Protect-A-Child Pool Fencing installed, rather than a danger zone, your pool and patio become an outdoor play area to be enjoyed by the entire family.

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

Hospital Bag

 

Ensure you have everything you need for your little one’s arrival with our hospital bag edit. Shop carefully for selected unisex essentials and multipacks

that are easy to care for and gentle on your baby’s skin, as well as discover our new Dreamskin® range to protect delicate and sensitive skin.

 

Organising your baby’s wardrobe can be stressful, especially when you’re starting from scratch. An 8 piece starter set is perfect for newborn babies and will make a lovely present for baby showers and christenings. The set includes two sleepsuits, two bodysuits, two sets of mittens, a hat and a bib. Made from pure cotton that’s comfortable against delicate skin, the set includes all of baby’s essentials.

Muslin squares are a daily must have for your little one. Made from pure cotton for extra softness, they come in an assortment of stripe and rabbit print designs, and plain white. They are fully machine washable and tumble dryer friendly for week-to-week convenience.

Bodysuits are ideal everyday basics when dressing your little one. Made from pure cotton for a comfortable feel, our long sleeve bodysuits are tumble dryer friendly for added practicality. Featuring nickel-free press stud fastenings to prevent irritation, and envelope necklines to make dressing easy.

As a baby’s skin is often subject to irritation and sensitivity, our DreamSkin® technology is specifically designed to soothe the skin and help the baby sleep soundly. Made from pure cotton which is gentle against baby’s skin, our soft sleepsuits incorporate DreamSkin® technology to protect delicate and sensitive skin. The sleepsuits also feature press stud fastenings through the centre for easy dressing.

Just like us, your little one will need a supply of socks from day one. Cotton rich with added stretch, our comfortable socks come in single packs as well as a practical pack of five with fold down trims. F&F is an international fashion brand for Men, Women and Kids at affordable prices.

 

Mums...Pamper Yourselves!

 

Moms are busy ladies and unfortunately, pampering is usually the first thing they sacrifice when they're swamped. Myoka Spa Breaks are the perfect way to rebalance the body and revive the soul. The best thing for busy moms to do is to take a little time out of each day to dedicate to themselves and their well-being. Some spa treatments are not as time consuming or expensive as one would think. We think that manicures, pedicures and massages are some of the top treatments for moms because they fit their lifestyles. When you are recovering from your baby's birth, a massage, facial or other treatment can truly lift your spirits. Mummy-to-be massage People have espoused the therapeutic benefits of massage therapy since at least 3000 B.C. but the  practice  for  pregnant  women  and  their  newborns is  a  fairly  new  discovery  for  many women. Pregnancy massage can bring relief to some of the most common complaints of pregnancy including heartburn and indigestion, hemorrhoids, morning sickness/nausea, sinus congestion, high blood pressure, and varicose veins.  Inner peace relaxing massage This  Massage  relaxes  muscles,  increases  circulation  and  lowers  stress  hormones, bringing  relaxation  and  stress  relief.  All body systems appreciate treatment after nine months of change, culminating with the delivery of the greatest miracle in life. Adding myofascial release and craniosacral therapy reaches deeper into the body for more complete healing.  Postpartum depression is a more serious, longer-lasting condition that affects 10-15% of mothers.  Studies show massage to be beneficial for treating postpartum depression.

Leading light massage Residual body aches from pregnancy are normal. Adding breastfeeding and childcare can intensify arm, shoulder and back pain. Massage is an effective holistic approach that relaxes muscles and relieves pain without medication.  Lymphatic drainage massage Body fluids need to find balance after pregnancy, in which there was an increase of about 50% in fluid volume.  This Massage increases circulation and lymphatic drainage to facilitate elimination of excess fluids and waste products. Massage helps hormone regulation, which also decreases swelling. Continue your high fluid intake for healing and lactation, even though you may still have swelling.For more info about our spa treatments please call the Myoka Lotus Spa on 21 370 163. We will assist you to design package around your budget and concerns ;-) www.myoka.com

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

My Malta

 

Claire Bonello is the mother of a 5 year old girl and a mischievous 3 year old boy. Claire is a lawyer and a newspaper columnist with The Sunday Times of Malta. She lives in Sliema, close to the sea and her favourite haunts. 

Around the Island with Claire Bonello

Here are Claire’s suggestions for great family outings.

Sightseeing: ‘One of my favourite places is the Chinese Garden in Santa Lucija. The children are fascinated by the set-up and the Oriental décor and there’s a lovely lawn to play on. The garden is closed off to traffic and children can be monitored at all times making it safe.’

Eating Out: ‘A very convenient place to grab a pizza or good salad is Amigos in Sliema. Besides serving excellent food, the atmosphere is laid-back and casual making it kid-friendly.’

Days Out: ‘The recently-opened Ta Qali Adventure Park makes a great day out as there are loads of different swings, climbing frames and water features to keep my children occupied.’

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

CPR on babies

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Immunisation

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

FAQ about children's teeth

 

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

How do I know if my child needs braces?

 

Children should usually start having regular dental checkups from the age of two.

Screening for tooth and jaw abnormalities is introduced gradually as the child’s development progresses and your dentist will know if and when your child needs to be referred to an orthodontist for assessment.

 

How young is too young to start considering braces? Most corrective treatment for tooth abnormalities is initiated after the child has changed all baby teeth to permanent ones – around the age of 10-11. Imperfectly aligned teeth are normal as teeth are being changed, since permanent teeth are growing into a limited space in a young jaw that only catches up as the child develops. Some braces that influence jaw growth and help correct misaligned jaws may be started as early as six years of age.

What are the different kinds of braces? Removable braces are simple appliances that help correct mild tooth position problems. Fixed braces in their various designs are the standard of care when more important malocclusions (tooth and jaw imperfections) are being treated. Functional appliances are usually employed to treat developmental jaw abnormalities and some habits (such as tongue thrust) at an earlier stage than other braces, and in many instances are followed by further orthodontic treatment.

Should braces be considered only for aesthetic reasons? While aesthetics are the primary reason for the demand for orthodontic treatment, braces help correct or prevent many other issues, such as chewing abnormalities, speech development problems, and possible future complications related to an unbalanced bite.

How long will my child be wearing braces for? Typically, orthodontic treatment takes between 1 and 3 years, depending on the severity of the original situation.

Is it ever too late to consider braces? The earlier orthodontic treatment is commenced following the establishment of permanent dentition, the shorter the duration of treatment will be. However, there is no upper limit to the age at which orthodontic treatment can be commenced.

 

 

 

 

 

The Importance of Paediatric First Aid

 

Many of the accidents that happen at home can be avoided.

Although we can avoid risks at home that could cause injury, sometimes this is not possible and children still injure themselves.

Most injuries are minor, but it is sensible to know what to do if the accident or illness is serious.

 

Remember that basic life saving skills could save your child’s life!

 

First Aid Treatment for Jelly Fish Sting

  • Remove tentacles – rinse the wound in seawater or scrape off tentacles using the edge of an ID/credit card. Avoid getting sand on the wound or using fresh water because it will activate more stingers.
  •  Rinse with vinegar or apply a baking soda paste – rinse the affected area with vinegar for 30 seconds. Baking soda paste may also be used. If neither of these are available, use salt water. All methods are effective in deactivating the stingers.
  • Take a hot shower or apply ice packs – apply tolerably hot water (45°C) or an ice pack. Both methods may help ease pain.
  • Seek medical advice – if pain or swelling persists.

Croup

  • Croup is a condition usually suffered by children.
  • It is caused by an inflammation of the voice box and windpipe.
  • Attacks usually occur at night or during sleep.
  • Although it can appear alarming, it is not serious and does not cause any lasting harm to the child.

Signs & Symptoms of Croup

  • Difficult, distressed breathing; a loud pitched whistling noise as the child breathes; a short ‘barking’ type cough; pale, clammy skin with possible blue tinges to the lips; use of muscles in the neck and upper chest to help the child breathe.

First Aid Treatment for Croup

  • Keep calm since panic will distress the child and make the attack worse.
  • Sit the child up to help their breathing and reassure them.
  • Seek medical advice.
  • Call 112 if the attack is severe, does not ease, or if the child has blue tinged lips and high body temperature.

First Aid Treatment for Nose Bleeding

  • Sit the child down, head tipped forward.
  • Nip the soft part of the nose and maintain constant pressure for 10 minutes.
  • Advise the child to breathe through the mouth.
  • Give the child a disposable cloth to mop up any blood whilst the nose is nipped.
  • Advise the child not to blow the nose for a few hours.
  • They must avoid picking the nose and drinking hot drinks for 24 hours.
  • If bleeding persists, take or send the child

to hospital in an upright position.

  • If a child is suffering from frequent nosebleeds, see the doctor.

It is recommended that parents attend a Paediatric First Aid course in order to learn basic life saving skills. This puts them in a better position to assist their child should an unexpected situation arise.

 

 

 

 

 

Immunisation schedule

 

IMMUNISATION 

It is usually up to doctors and paediatricians to recommend various vaccines to their clients. It is important to note that Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio are compulsory vaccines whereas MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) and Hepatitis B are highly recommended. 


MALTESE NATIONAL IMMUNISATION SCHEDULE  

 

DEFINITIONS

DTaP-Hib-IPV: Diphtheria, Tetanus, acellular Pertussis, H.Influenzae type B, Polio

Hep B: Hepatitis B

MMR: Measles, Mumps, Rubella

BCG: Bacille Calmitte Guerin (Tuberculosis)

dT-IPV: adult diphtheria, Tetanus, Polio 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why are primary teeth so important

  

Why are primary teeth so important fo speech development? Baby teeth, or “Primary teeth” are extremely important for your child’s oral health and development. The proper positioning of primary teeth facilitates correct syllable pronunciation and prevents the tongue from straying during speech formation.  Learning to speak clearly is crucial for cognitive, social, and emotional development. 
When should I expect my baby’s first tooth and how long will it take for all the teeth to come through? 
 
The general eruption of teeth occurs:
Central incisors: 6-12 months of age
Lateral incisors: 9-16 months of age
Canine teeth: 16-23 months of age
First molars: 13-19 months of age
Second molars: 22-24 months of age


What are the symptoms of teething? 
 
There is some disagreement in pediatric dentistry about whether or not teething actually causes symptoms such as diarrhea or fevers.  Whatever symptoms  may or may not appear, many parents find their babies suffer discomfort.
 
Problems sleeping
Biting behavior changes
Irritability
Refusing to eat
Gum swelling and sensitivity
Drooling
Bringing hands to the mouth
Rubbing the cheek or ear region
 
Many experts believe teething is to blame for loose stools or a runny fever, but for different reasons. Excessive saliva being digested may loosen stools, or infection because the stress of teething makes your child more vulnerable.  Contact your doctor if your baby’s temperature reaches 38°C or higher.

What can i do to help ease teething discomfort ? 
 
A cool washcloth to chew on
A firm rubber teething ring
An unsweetened teething cracker
Topical pain relief gel
Rubbing your baby’s gums with a clean finger

When should I start brushing my baby’s teeth and why? Brushing should start as soon as the first tooth starts erupting. Make sure brushing teeth is part of an established routine, so they expect it to happen every morning and night. 

When should I expect my child to start changing teeth and how long should this take? This may vary – typically girls are slightly more precocious and can start changing teeth as early as 5 years of age – this process continues until around the age of 11 and 12 and usually follows the same pattern as the eruption of the baby teeth.   At around 6 years of age, the first permanent molars start making their appearance.. 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

Sit-ups and crunches make this condition worse!

 

 Many new mothers have problems with their tummies following child-birth. Although they may often make an effort to eat well and engage in some exercise in order to get back to their original, pre-pregnancy weight, their tummy just does not respond. When mothers deliver a large child or perhaps even twins, a separation of the abdominal muscle, known as diastasis recti, may occur. This can be quite disconcerting for the mother, as dieting and regular exercise will not fix this condition. Besides the negative aesthetic appearance, this condition compromises trunk and pelvic stability, bringing about an alteration in trunk mechanics and posture, which leaves the lumbar spine and pelvis more vulnerable to injury. Typical tummy exercises like crunches and sit-ups are contra-indicated and may actually worsen the condition.

 

However, there is hope. A targeted, specific exercise programme for the abdominal area under the guidance of a knowledgeable fitness professional can help to heal this separation and bring the abdominal muscles back together. This will result in a decreased abdominal circumference, flatter tummy and improved appearance.

The major muscle to target initially in curing the diastsis recti is the transverse abdominis, which is a ‘corset-like’ muscle that runs horizontally around the tummy area. It is activated by ‘drawing-in’ the tummy, or pulling the belly button towards the spine. Strengthening the transverse muscle helps to decrease pressure on the diastasis and puts the separated abdominal muscle in a position where it can begin to heal. 

External support garments similar to a corset are also available and may provide compression and support to the abdominal and lumbopelvic region by mimicking the tension of the transverse abdominis muscle, and may provide biofeedback for the transverse abdominis muscle to assist with its activation. 

Selecting the right kind of rehabilitation exercises in combination with a supportive eating regime can help most mothers regain their pre-pregnancy tummy.

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

CPR for children(Cardiopulmonary resuscitation)

 

 A child is considered to be between one year to puberty for the purposes of these instructions. It is neither necessary nor appropriate to check if a child has reached puberty.

If you have someone with you, send them to dial 112 for an ambulance immediately.

If you are on your own carry out CPR for one minute before dialling 112 for an ambulance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attempt to give five rescue breaths

-          Ensure the airway is open

-          Seal your lips around the child’s mouth while pinching the nose.

-          Blow gently into the lungs, looking along the chest as you breathe. Take shallow breaths and do not empty your lungs completely.

-          As the chest rises, stop blowing and allow it to fall.

-          Repeat four more times then check for circulation.

 

Give 30 chest compressions

-          Place one or two hands in the centre of the chest (depending on the size of the child.

-          Use the heel of that hand with arms straight and press down to a third of the depth of the chest.

-          Press 30 times, at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute.

-          After 30 compressions, attempt to give two rescue breaths.

 

Continue resuscitation

(30 compressions to two rescue breaths) without stopping until help arrives.

 

Notes

-          If you are alone, carry out rescue breaths and chest compressions for one minute before leaving the child to call an ambulance.

-          If you are familiar with adult CPR and have no knowledge of child CPR, use the adult sequence.

-          It is possible to identify the correct hand position without removing the child's clothes.

 

Please note:These first aid tips are no substitute for thorough knowledge of first aid.

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

Some basic first aid tips

 

 Bleeding

Minor cuts, scratches and grazes

Treatment

-      Wash and dry your own hands.

-      Cover any cuts on your own hands and put on disposable gloves.

-      Clean the cut, if dirty, under running water. Pat dry with a sterile dressing or clean lint-free material. If possible, raise affected area above the heart.

-      Cover the cut temporarily while you clean the surrounding skin with soap and water and pat the surrounding skin dry. Cover the cut completely with a sterile dressing or plaster.

 

 

Severe bleeding Treatment

-      Put on disposable gloves.

-      Apply direct pressure to the wound with a pad (e.g. a clean cloth) or fingers until a sterile dressing is available.

-      Raise and support the injured limb. Take particular care if you suspect a bone has been broken.

-      Lay the casualty down to treat for shock.

-      Bandage the pad or dressing firmly to control bleeding, but not so tightly that it stops the circulation to fingers or toes. If bleeding seeps through first bandage, cover with a second bandage. If bleeding continues to seep through bandage, remove it and reapply.

-      Treat for shock.

-      Dial 112 for an ambulance.

Remember: protect yourself from infection by wearing disposable gloves and covering any wounds on your hands. If blood comes through the dressing do not remove it – bandage another over the original. If blood seeps through both dressings, remove them both and replace with a fresh dressing, applying pressure over the site of bleeding.

 

Objects in wound

Where possible, swab or wash small objects out of the wound with clean water. If there is a large object embedded:

Treatment

-      Leave it in place.

-      Apply firm pressure on either side of the object.

-      Raise and support the wounded limb or part.

-      Lay the casualty down to treat for shock.

-      Gently cover the wound and object with a sterile dressing.

-      Build up padding around the object until the padding is higher than the object, then bandage over the object without pressing on it.

-      Depending on the severity of the bleeding, dial 112 for an ambulance or take the casualty to hospital.

The above are only guidelines and are in no way a substitute for a thorough knowledge of first aid.

The source of this first aid for bleeding is from St John Ambulance, Malta.

 

www.stjohnambulancemalta.com

For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

 

 
 

 

Supporting your child’s emotional growth

As a parent the first and most important aspect of your child’s emotional and psychological growth is the internal journey of self-awareness you embark on yourself.  The more emotionally literate you are as a parent the more you are capable of offering your child an emotionally stable environment. This is a journey and a very exciting one.  If in the past you have had limited interest in your own emotional and psychological development, now is the time to start your journey. Parent your child with self-awareness and knowledge. This article is designed to give you a glimpse of what may work for you and your child in the first three years, the most crucial years of development. It will highlight some essential tips which can support your parenting skills and the development of your child within the emotional and psychological realm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prenatal phase 

Make this time a relaxed and happy time for yourself and your unborn baby.

Talk to your friends and family about your experience as an expectant mother.

Talk to those who really want to hear about your experience.

Listen to music which is elevating and calming and makes you “feel good”.

Touch your baby frequently, talk to your baby and sing to it. Although your baby is still unborn he or she still has sensations.

Come up with a pet name or a real name (if you know the baby’s sex) for your baby so you can start referring to him or her with that name rather than using “it”. Or simply say “baby”. 

Tell your baby that he or she is a wanted and loved child (even when circumstances are unfavourable). Even children given up for adoption are often loved deeply by someone other than their biological parent.  

The prenatal phase is often a more intensive period for a mother than it is for a father because of the physical changes taking place. Speak to your partner about these changes and if your partner is absent or unavailable share this information with someone who you know will be excited to hear it.

Birth – one year  

Your baby is born. Seek as much support as you can whether this is paid or voluntary. At this point mixed feelings towards parenting are common so make sure you get the help you can in order to be well for your child.

Ritualize the birth of your baby. Welcome your baby with phrases such as “Welcome to Earth”, “You are a wanted and loved baby”, “We are happy to have you”. This will set the pattern for the relationship between you and your child.  Although your child may not be using words at this stage, he or she is still taking in your gestures, non verbal expressions, tone of voice and other emotions present in his environment.

Hold, touch, cuddle, cradle, have eye to eye contact and spoil your baby as much as you can. There is no such thing as spoiling a child under the age of 12 months.

Sing to your baby. Sing songs which connect you positively to your baby and which you enjoy singing. They can be anything from nursery songs to pop music to film music.

Be around for your child.  Job opportunities demanding long hours out of the house can wait but your child’s development cannot wait.  

One to Two years

Your child is more verbal now so you may feel more inclined to use words yourself. Make it a rule in your family that words used are gentle, kind, respectful, considerate and clear.  

At this stage the need to discipline starts to emerge. Take time to learn how to use discipline effectively rather than simply trying to not do what your parents did to you. Look for books, internet sites and audio visual material that can support you in disciplining effectively.

Avoid advice from well meaning friends and relatives. You will have to find your own respectful style of integrating discipline in your family life.

Firm but kind and Love and Logic are in, Do as I say and For your own good are out.

Praise your child for their achievements (scribbling, saying a new word).

Appreciate your child’s physical qualities and be specific when doing so (“I love the way your little toe curls in this way”).

Avoid discussing your child in his or her presence and try to avoid the subject when other adults say “Is he/she a naughty boy/girl?” This is labelling and unnecessary to one’s growth.

Name calling and swiping statements can be avoided altogether. Make it a rule to always be positive towards your child. Start sentences with that’s … rather than you are … in order to form a habit of always talking about behaviour and action and not about the person.

Two to three years

Keep the pattern of speaking positively to your child, using a regular tone of voice, plenty of smiles and lots of reasoning and bargaining.  

Avoid shouting and spanking altogether.

Touch your child’s body only when expressing love or for safety and never in anger. The way you treat your child’s body is the way he or she will treat it as an adult. If you have difficulty controlling yourself and find yourself hitting your child seek professional help.

Keep reading books and consulting professionals when things seem to puzzle you.

Seek support of other mothers. Go out with them to gardens, parks, play areas and chat about how you feel. 

Take breaks by meeting friends for a walk or a coffee while someone else takes care of your child.

At this stage it is important to demonstrate to your child that you know how to take care of yourself so leave him with someone he or she likes to be with and tell your child that you are going out for a short while to have fun with some friends.  Avoid doing housework while your child is cared for by someone else.

If possible do something for yourself once a day. This can be a walk, a coffee, a film or anything else that makes you feel good.  

A happy parent makes a happy child and so it is important that you regard your happiness as a top priority. Even when you are invaded with anxious and negative thoughts start telling yourself positive things that work for you. 

Speak to your child about interesting and wonderful things in the world, remembering that this is the start of his or her journey.

Avoid exposing your child to excessive TV viewing, video games, news and other such stuff.

In the presence of your child avoid discussing tragic events that happened to neighbours or other people as your child is not intellectually prepared for this and will misinterpret it. Missing children, house theft, dying parents and the like are what children’s nightmares consist of – they are best left in the realm of dreams and not brought into reality. Gently stop people from talking about such things in the presence of children by non-verbally signalling to them that the child is around.  

 

 

 
 
 

Words, Words, Words, nutrition for your child’s mind! 

Mary Poppins!
Recall to your mind the movie, Mary Poppins where the eponymous nanny sings: 'Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, even though the sound of it is something quite atrocious!' Mary Poppins rather enjoyed and knew the power of nutritional words and phrases for her young charges and dished them out with spoonfuls of glee and joy. When you speak to your child, you are offering to them suggestions and ideas and labels, which can be either helpful or limiting. Telling a child "You’re useless!" may sink in as a 'life sentence' that your child could retain for the greater part of her life ? until she finds the key to releasing them in therapy or personal growth. You can avoid that long recovery by freeing yourself from the unconscious tyranny of words, and in so doing freeing your child by choosing words and phrases that garland and celebrate that young life.
 
Grown-up opinions and their legacy 
As youngsters we are much more vulnerable to grown-ups' opin¬ions. From those opinions we derive both pleasure and pain. A young child is especially vulnerable to the effects of labels that others dish out. "You're thick.  You're stupid.  You're no child of mine." Often repeated, these labels embed them¬selves in the subconscious mind.  You are what you devour! This is true of your personality as well as your body.  Incoming words become absorbed either for the benefit of your child's developing personality or in denial of the bright spirit within your child that longs to shine.
 
Your child devours the words you serve up
In their formative years children are under pressure to accept what they are given.  Children are told to eat up all the food on their plates ? to 'eat their greens'.  Children can devour and absorb words even more voraciously than dinner.  Children eat what¬ever is given to them ? whether it is a good apple or a poison-ed apple ? especially when served up by loved ones or pro¬tectors. Likewise, they accept trustingly the verbal expressions that are given to them to digest and absorb.
 
When words are good they are very good, and when they are bad they are horrid.
Children do not have the faculty for dis¬cerning which words to absorb and which to reject. They lack the life-experience to know what is an appropriate diet for their minds. Their ability in this respect is limited both by a lack of understanding and by an unconditional love that leads them to trust whatever grown-ups tell them. When dis¬eased fruits land on her plate the child may blame herself for the bad taste and sickness rather than the person who gave her those fruits. Un¬able to separate the pea from the pod in her mind she may not be able to formulate a clear idea of the external source of her un¬happiness.  
 
Repeat and repeat nutritious words and phrases to your child
A frequently repeated ill-intentioned word can become a label that we wear as a hand-me-down wound. When words are good, their effect can be very beneficial, and when they are bad they can be very, very bad. We ingest and digest them ? as told to do so by parents and siblings at home, teachers and others at school ? but discover later that some of them worked to hold back our growing minds and to deny the potential to be who we truly are.  
 
Support your child's verbal heaven
The brightest spark in the heavens would need phen¬omenal strength, self-belief and determination in order to tran¬scend continual put-downs and critical hand-me-down labels. In fact, your child may gener¬ally muddle through, and other children to a lesser or greater degree. Your child may have the strength, may have the seeds of self-belief, and the determination. But there are many bright sparks out there who continually strive to transcend their received labels as children and who endeavour to correct their initial social programming each day ? to work towards recognising the truth about themselves. For example, my client Maria as a young girl grew up believ¬ing she was a bad person because she had internalised adverse suggestions about being left-handed.
 
Always indulge your child with positive suggestions
Most often children are subjected to quite arbitrary patterns of suggestion which arise out of the past history of the suggesters be they parents or other family members, or teachers. Sometimes the patterns are purely verbal, sometimes they are backed up with coercion. My client Steven grew up believing himself to be 'crap' because of a father whose temper was on a hair-trigger and who beat him up for the least infringement of his rules.  
 
Celebrate the magical child
Bearing in mind how potent your words can be in a child's ear, dream up gorgeous and growth-allowing suggestions for your child that honour the best and the brightest of them. It helps your child whenever you encourage her to choose words that express opinions of herself that are kind and honouring ? and likewise encourage her to let go of labels and opinions of herself that do not serve her. 
 
Be selective about what your child watches on television and other media
The most common reason for viewers to watch any given television show or advert is that it follows whatever was on previously. Traumatic scenes in television and film enter through the undiscriminating eye of your child. Scenes and images go directly to your young child’s subconscious mind. There they lodge, and not necessarily for her advantageous benefit. This diet for the mind can be thought of as being 'toxic' and can ultimately be more devastating than junk food. The latter can be rejected by the body, but television's diet for the mind can lie in the pit of the mind ? festering and waiting to be regurgitated in an inappropriate emotional or physical way.  
 
Be on your guard with respect to the influences in society
Be aware of enticing influences in supermarkets and fast food restaurants!
Suggestions within supermarkets, fast food restaurants, and society at large, are able to influence your child beyond your control. Guard their senses and maintain  attention to what is coming in ? be it from corporations, television, the internet or a computer screen.
 
Do your best to ensure your child's vocabulary is packed full of verbal vitamins!
Be watchful and ensure the verbal diet your child receives from you and other sources, is in all ways nutritious, and strengthening of the values, and the qualities that empower their humanity and positive growth.   
 
Deborah Marshall-Warren is a gifted Hypnotherapist, and Trainer. She is a passionate speaker on the subject of vocabulary as the most nutritional diet for the mind and the importance of 'eating healthy words' with respect to your child, and yourself.  She is in private practice working with children and the 'inner children' of adults for the past 16 years.  Contact her at:  appointments@marshall-warren.com
 
Be aware of how your words can be misunderstood
Be aware that your words may live on for years
Give your child phrases that build her self-esteem
Guard your child's exposure to potentially toxic language
Teach your child which words to devour and which to leave aside
 
 

 

 
 

Gastrointestinal Problems in Children and Adolescents

 

By Dr. Thomas M. Attard M.D. FAAP FACG

Consultant Pediatrician - Gastroenterology  
 
 
Colic is a common problem in normal infants in the first few months of life and is marked by periodic excessive fussiness in an otherwise well infant. Most infants with colic feed and grow well and it is unusual for colic to last longer than the first five months of life. Several conditions that require specific treatment may be mistaken for colic and therefore severe cases or patients with atypical symptoms can be referred for evaluation.
 
Gastroesophageal Reflux (GORD) Spitting up immediately after feeds is common in normal infants especially in the first few months; these infants are typically growing well and the spit-ups cause them minimal or no upset (‘happy spitter’). Some specialized formulas improve the symptoms associated with GORD in infants, but some patients with more severe symptoms or unusual patterns of vomiting may have other problems that require specialist evaluation and care.
 
Allergic Enterocolitis.  Some infants with spittiness and excessive fussiness, in fact have an allergic reaction in their intestines that provokes pain, changes in their stools – including blood or mucus and sometimes exacerbates GORD. These children would benefit from changes in their diet including changes to the mother’s diet if breast fed, or change to a hypoallergenic formula if already formula-fed. The impact of an allergy to food on a child’s development may include the risk of eczema and the later development of asthma. 
 
Chronic diarrhoea Some toddlers develop diarrhoea as part of their normal development and as a result of their evolving diet that may include excessive sugars. Longstanding diarrhoea may however be a symptom of various diseases including celiac early on, food allergy and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) later on. Blood in the stool, even if not with diarrhoea always requires assessment and in most cases specialist assessment and care. 
 
Obesity Problems associated with being overweight are the fastest growing category of diseases in modern countries including in children. The onset of adult obesity usually rests with behaviour patterns in childhood. It is important that overweight children are assessed and appropriately counselled on their long term management by a specialist in liaison with a dietician; adult weight loss regimens should not be applied to children without the input of the medical team. Obese children need to be checked for, amongst others, liver injury from fat that is becoming one of the most common liver diseases in modern society. 
 
 
Dr Thomas M. Attard is a paediatrician who has further specialized in the care of children and adolescents with the various gastrointestinal illnesses or gastrointestinal complications of other disorders such as neurologic disabilities. 
 

 

 
 

Medicine Cabinet Essentials


People go to medicine cabinets to find relief. Medicines, on the other hand, go to medicine cabinets to die a slow and undignified death. We all tend to forget to regularly check the contents of our medicine chest for expiry dates and completeness.
 
Is it time to give your medical supplies a checkup? Apart from your prescriptions, all you need are the tools to treat minor cuts and burns, headaches, fevers, coughs, itching, allergies, or a runny nose. The key word here is minor.
 
For Pain, Headaches, Fever
Paracetamol:  this should be your stock pain killer and fever reducing agent. It is safe in the right doses and comes as tablets, syrup or suppositories. 
Non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s): these are effective painkillers. Children formulations are also available as syrups or suppositories.They can be very effective to relieve the pain of a sore tooth or ear.
Medicine for coughs and colds
Decongestants:These come in tablet and syrup forms, as well as nasal sprays.
 
Cough medicine: For a dry, hacking cough, look for one that contains the cough suppressant dextromethorphan or similar. If the cough is producing mucus, use something with carbocisteine, an expectorant, to loosen secretions.
 
For Digestive Problems
Antacid tablets or syrup relieve heartburn, which occurs when stomach acid backs up and irritates the esophagus. 
Anti emetic medication in tablet, syrup or suppository form can be handy in the event of nausea and vomiting. Withholding solids and sticking to liquids helps.
Oral rehydration powder sachets: keep a good boxful of these to deal with vomiting and diarrhea.
For Itchy Rashes, Insect Bites, Allergiesand Other Skin Problems
Calamine lotion: This old-fashioned pink liquid soothes itching from rashes and bites and dries up weepy rashes.
Antihistamine cream: Use one to relieve intense itching. Or try one that combines calamine and an antihistamine.
Antihistamines: Diphenhydramine and chlorpheniramine both work to relieve sneezing and a runny nose, but each causes sleepiness. Loratadine is nonsedating. They are useful for allergic, itchy rashes too.
 
For Cuts and Burns
Bandages and gauze pads: A box of adhesive strips in assorted sizes and a box of gauze pads (the large size, 10x10cm, which can be cut down) will be adequate to dress most cuts, scrapes, and burns.
 
Medical tape: This will hold gauze in place. 
Proprietary creams for burns are available.Also useful for sunburn.
 
Tools
Thermometer: The electronic kind is usually accurate and sturdy, and a good choice for those who are wary of the mercury in traditional thermometers. For babies, rectal thermometers are most accurate.
Magnifying glass and tweezers: To remove splinters.
Pill cutter: Comes in handy if you need to cut a dose in half.
Small phials of sterile saline are useful to wash cuts, grazes and burns before a clean dressing is applied. Sterile saline can be used to wash out a foreign body or liquid in the eye.
 
Some medication needs to be kept at a low temperature and so the fridge may be a better place to store such items. A child proof lock is essential where young kids are around; fixing the medicine cabinet out of reach also helps avoid prying little fingers.
 
Dr Alex Portelli MD
 
 

 

 
 
 

 Activities

 

 

The discussion that needs to happen

 

how to engage with technology as a family

 There can be no argument about the pervasiveness of technology in today’s world. Whether at work, school or home – it is everywhere. 

And as technology evolves, it becomes ever more accessible and affordable. The advent of touchscreen devices has done away with the need to read letters on a keyboard or to have hands big enough to grab a mouse.

Children are essentially ‘born ready’ to engage with technology. All they need to do is point and touch.

 

But as parents, we also know that technology can present huge challenges. We are happy when a tablet or phone acts as a pacifier, but complain when children do nothing but play on their devices. We might invest in educational apps, but do we follow up to see what educational progress the child is making? Is more technology always better?

When family time is essential,the automatic reaction seems to be to ban all electronic devices. But is this the only way? How can we make the best use of technology? Do we need to focus on the skills that children learn at school, or do we also need to make sure that parents are not lagging behind? Are games like Minecraft just games, or can we use them in fun ways that the whole family can enjoy and learn from?

These are just some of the many questions that will need to be discussed. We cannot escape this – whether we are children, teachers or parents.The question is not about whether we need to find new ways to engage with technology, but simply about how and when to do so. At EasyPeasy Coding we strive to find the most innovative answers to these questions.

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

  

 

 

Gems of Malta


Words by Yolande Kleinjan

Four years ago I moved from the Netherlands to Malta with my husband and two sons (they were 6 and 9 at the time). The first summer I explored the island, together with my two sons. They had, after all, a never-ending summer of 3 months! As a semi - tourist we visited all the usual places. But I wanted to do different stuff, go out, feel nature, have long walks, go hiking, exploring beaches, sneaking through caves and looking for fossils. I wanted to discover the beauty of Malta, far away from the crowds and off the paved roads. Having said that, walking is surely the best way to explore. ''The feel of a country under your fingertips, against your cheek, through the soles of your feet - this can only be done by walking''.

 

 

 

 

Spring

Spring for me is the favorite season of the year. But be aware! Before even noticing it, hot summer is already around the corner. It can happen that you change your winter wardrobe into summer wardrobe within one week. So we have to enjoy spring as much as possible. Mtaħleb is for us the best place to enjoy spring, it is one of the highest points on the island and is situated by the cliffs at the North West of Malta. The area is covered with beautiful red, yellow, pink flowers. This is the perfect place for the kids to find amazing fossils. There are many cliff sites in Malta, but what is special about Mtaħleb is that there is a gorge (small opening in the cliffy rocks) from where you can descend down the cliffs by the sea.It is quite exciting as you walk close to the edge of the high cliffs of Malta. Fishermen are trying to catch some fish with  their long fishing lines all the way down to the sea. We love to have a picnic here.  A picnic with an amazing view and a breathtaking sunset.

Summer

During summer we are most of the time enjoying sailing. But even in summer there are days when you prefer to stay ashore. This is an ideal time to explore Gozo.  You don’t need to walk far to find the path which leads you to Mġarr ix-Xini.  The walk is truly breathtaking. Starting the walk from Mġarr fishing hamlet, past the Gozo ferry, you wlll find a path under Fort Chambray bastions. All the way towards Mġarr ix-Xini you find a really beautiful gem of nature, sea, flora and history. My boys love to play around the Mġarr ix-Xini tower and the gorgeous beach beneath it. In Mġarr ix-Xini you will find a lovely small restaurant where you can enjoy fresh fish, while the kids are exploring the valley or are swimming in the crystal clear blue water. When you still have some energy left you can continue going uphill to Ta’ Ċenc wilderness. You can enjoy the breathtaking views of the islands and the highest cliffs in Gozo. It is full of lizards and even sometimes we meet a shepherd with his flock. The path will eventually lead you to Xlendi bay, where you can take the bus back to Mġarr. 

Autumn

In autumn when it is not too hot anymore and it starts to get a bit greener, one of our favorite spots is the area around Girgenti. In this area you will find so many aspects of beautiful Malta.  Park your car at Buskett Garden, where the kids can play around. Then follow the road which leads to Clapham Junction. Here you can find the pre-historic cart ruts, which is quite interesting for the kids. Every time we try to figure out how they were created. And I can tell you they come up with some interesting theories! But so far no one has ever found the answers for these cart ruts, only questions. In this area we also found a big cave, where it is paradise for the kids to play around. From there you can walk along the Roman Quarries towards the beautiful green valley of Girgenti. A lot of food we eat on this island must come from this fertile valley. In autumn the air is drenched with orange fragrance. Oranges and lemons are all around you.  When the kids are still not tired you can climb the Laferla Cross, which is situated on the highest hill in Malta. You can find our names next to thousands of other names marked at the base of the statue. 

Winter

As we live in the South of the Island, we love to go out for an afternoon in the area around St. Peters Pool. One of Malta’s best kept secrets is the Delimara area, just off the  picturesque fishermen’s village of Marsaxlokk. This swimming spot is the  perfect example of an unspoiled beach and an excellent place for snorkeling. There is not even a kiosk where the boys can moan about snacks or drinks. It is called a pool because it looks like a natural swimming pool carved into the rocks. But the area is not only perfect for swimming, it is also great for hiking. When it is too cold for a swim we love to walk from Marsascala to Marsaxlokk and visit the famous market on a Sunday morning. The countryside between the two harbour towns of Marsaskala  and Marsaxlokk, provides some of the most spectacular walking tours in the South of Malta. On our explorations we found the Tas-Silg archeological site, which is not accessible for the public, the Victorian Tas-Silg Fort, now  a dogs' home, St. Paul's Battery, where we were able to make out where the large guns had once been placed to protect the bay and a very difficult to reach deserted (stone) beach, which is an adventure in itself for the kids.

I’m really honoured that I can share my favorite spots with you, but please promise me one thing when you visit them. Be mindful of these spots and keep them clean. Looking forward to meet you somewhere!

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Tax Deductions for Children's Cultural & Creative Courses

Fees paid for Children’s Cultural & Creative Courses

If your child is under sixteen years of age you may be entitled to a tax deduction. If the cultural or creative course is registered with the Malta Council for Culture and the Arts you can claim a deduction against your chargeable income for the amount of  fees paid up to a maximum of one hundred Euro. Forms can be downloaded from www.ird.gov.mt andwww.maltaculture.com.  For more information you can contact the Inland Revenue Department on freephone 8007 2297.

Ħlas fuq attivitajiet kulturali u kreattivi – Tnaqqis tat-Taxxa

Jekk it-tfal tiegħek huma taħt is-sittax-il sena, tista’ tkun intitolat għal tnaqqis fit-taxxa. Jekk l-entità kulturali u kreattiva li fiha jattendu t-tfal hija rreġistrata mal-Malta Council for Culture and the Arts, int tista’ tingħata tnaqqis fuq il-qliegħ taxxabbli fuq il-ħlasijiet imħallsa sa massimu ta' mitt Ewro. Il-formoli jistgħu jiġu mniżżla minn www.ird.gov.mt uwww.maltaculture.com. Għal aktar informazzjoni tista’ ċċempel lid-Dipartiment tat-Taxxi Interni fuq freephone 8007 2297.  

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

 

Top free places to go with the kids  

as voted by Kate de Cesare, Claire Bonello and 4 kids 

Yummy Mummies Kate and Claire manage to juggle work, kids and, of course, not forgetting, their husbands. As busy parents we all know that time spent with the kids is precious time not to be wasted but savoured. Kate and Claire have been gallivanting across the country with their kids on behalf of the Malta Baby & Kids Directory and have come up with their list of favourite places to go with the children and lo and behold, all without spending a penny!  Try them out and see what you & yours think.

1. Buskett - ideally not on a Sunday - but especially in spring, autumn or a sunny winter day... it makes for a great 'adventure' for the kids and gets them walking a little - they can climb trees, count tadpoles, run about and picnic in a very nice picnic area. It’s safe and large enough to make each trip slightly different. A great place for children to delight in and parents to relax and unwind.

2. San Anton Gardens - a beautiful classical garden with lots to see including cats, turtles, ducks, various fountains... area in front of the steps to the palace is nice for a picnic... lovely place to walk and for the kids to run around, shaded and safe.

3. Independence Gardens - convenient - has some shady bits... kids love the cat bit and the fountain bit... they can ride bikes, play on the swings... can have a coffee after and the kids can run about.

4. Golden Bay – a super destination – children everywhere have always loved building sand castles… just take care to cover them with high factor sun screen in the searing summer months.

5. Chinese Gardens in Santa Lucija – This is a quiet spot of green amongst the hubbub where parents can relax while their children play safely and clamber on the rocks within the Chinese pagoda.

6. Kennedy Grove - Not on a Sunday, but during the week when the world & his wife isn't there! It’s fun for the kids to play in the grass and climb trees and it has a nice picnic area. Not a huge space but very pleasant.

7. Swings outside Mdina – A good place to romp before indulging in chocolate cake at one of the Mdina cafes. 

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

Baby Development 

Many of us spend the majority of our lives thriving to improve our communication skills for professional and personal reasons.  

As our children grow older, we will spend many hours helping them to develop good communication skills and supporting them in situations where they have misunderstood others or been misunderstood themselves.  

During the vital first year, when the brain is developing more than any other time there is so much we can do to help our babies develop vital early communication skills. Babies learn, develop or acquire language through sensory experiences that involve verbal interactions with adults.

 

Early nurturing is so important. Babies have an amazing capacity to learn, but because parents or practitioners may not know what to look for, skills and capabilities may go unnoticed. One of the most exciting advances in child development has been the discovery that babies actually learn before they are born. Even more amazing is the fact that during their first year, babies learn more than at any other time in their lives. Babies are so clever, and their first year of development offers parents and practitioners a significant and remarkable opportunity to enjoy the learning potential of these incredible beings right from the start! 

By the first birthday, the baby's brain has doubled in volume as a direct result of the trillions of connections made between the brain cells. This is the importance of introducing a rich variety of sensory experiences at every possible opportunity. Dr Lin Day (PhD, Dip. Ed, BSc, PGCE, M. Phil.) 

Claire Savona ~ Baby Sensory Malta

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

My Malta

Married to Robert and the mother of 2 wonderful children – Kristina 14 and John 7, Andrea forms part of the Malta Baby & Kids Directory and www.maltababyandkids.com team. Andrea is a dedicated and inspirational mother and when not taxi-driving the kids to their various activities her passion is preparing jams and chutneys or baking and cooking using the freshest ingredients purchased directly from the farmers in her neighbourhood in the quaint village of Qrendi. 

Around the Island with Andrea Critien

Here are Andrea’s suggestions for great family outings.

Sightseeing: ‘I wouldn’t mind taking the kids on all the latest and fancy sightseeing excursions, however there’s always a budget to adhere to so we try to include sightseeing spots in our nature walks, our adventurous picnics or exciting camping trips. Living in Qrendi is a blessing; there are so many awesome sights and plenty of nature walks to choose from. My absolute favourite one is Blue Grotto/Wied Babu promenade in Zurrieq, Hagar Qim, Mnajdra, Maqluba, Qrendi, where we walk along the recently refurbished Wied Babu promenade down to Wied iz-Zurrieq and, weather & budget permitting, we catch a luzzu trip to the Blue Grotto and nearby caves. Otherwise we stop at one of the many cafés then carry on our steep walk up the promenade to Hagar Qim and down to Mnajdra temples, take a rest on the rocks then pursue our trek until we reach the deep natural crevice, Maqluba, in Qrendi.

‘On a balmy summer’s night we enjoy a walk along the Senglea waterfront which has amazing views of the restored Valletta Waterfront Pinto Stores and Fort St Angelo just across the water then we proceed through the city’s narrow streets. We sometimes either take a boat ride around Grand Harbour or just around Senglea and Vittoriosa creek.’

Eating Out: ‘We rarely eat out as both Robert and I enjoy our cooking and love to entertain both family and friends. However if I had to choose where to eat out, I’d definitely pick Palazzo Parisio for a lavish tea time treat. We also enjoy Fontanella in Mdina or Bobbyland in Dingli for hot chocolate and cake. Pizza would have to be at Margo’s in Mistra Bay, apart from being really tasty the surroundings just complete the perfection. On summer weekdays we either nip down to Wied iz-Zurrieq or enjoy a pizza down at one of the many pizzerias at the Senglea Waterfront, were John can talk to people while they’re fishing or watch football on the big screens. However when we’re eating out with my large family (17) we tend to eat at tal-Kaptan at the Valletta Waterfront which is great for kids as the aquarium inside keeps them entranced for quite a while, at least until the food arrives at the table.’

Days Out: ‘We’re blessed with a mixture of places on the island. In summer we enjoy scrambling down to one of Selmun’s or Mellieha’s hidden beaches that fortunately can only be reached on foot or by boat. Sometimes we catch an early boat to Comino to swim in the Blue Lagoon before the crowds arrive for the day, then we walk across the island and stop for a swim at various bays, and perhaps hire a pedal boat to explore the caves – you can choose to take packed lunch or you may have snack at the hotel cafeteria.

‘In the Autumn/winter the boots and anoraks come out and we go on long country walks in Qrendi, Siggiewi, Fomm ir-Rih or on warmer days we enjoy picnics in Mtahleb, Mizieb, Manikata, Buskett, depending on the weather.  

‘We also enjoy flying our kites at Ta' Qali or Hal-Far on very windy days. There are also the Wirt Artna or Heritage Malta Sites that hold regular open days of their various sites and when possible we try to take advantage of these events. 

‘There’s no excuse not to go out in Malta, we’re lucky to have great weather, short distances and a wealth of natural and historical venues to visit. We refer to www.maltababyandkids.com regularly as events are updated daily and there are so many to choose from! Your weekends with the kids will never be the same again!’

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

  

Ideas to keep kids active 

Get adventurous and become a Dolphin or Cub, Guide or Scout. Guiding and scouting are an Education for Life. They complement the school and the family but fulfil those needs not met by either. They develop self-knowledge, the need to explore, to discover, to want to know. Their non-formal education programmes are full of progressive activities based on the interests of girls, boys, young women and men. Activities in contact with nature, a rich learning environment where simplicity, creativity and discovery come together to provide new adventures and challenges. (Activities – Adventure Clubs section)
 
With encouragement at home and at school, children progress rapidly from the scribbles and paint blobs from their playgroup days to more skilled forms of creativity, such as painting pictures and constructing models. So assist their imagination and guide your child to express their inner self through one of the many art and craft or ceramic sessions available.  (Activities – Art & Craft section)
 
Kids look forward to bath time so why not try a bath bomb session. Whilst a fun activity that creates a useful product, making bath bombs can be a lesson in science – the fizzing reaction is the same type of reaction that occurs in carbonated beverages. (Activities – Art & Craft section
 
Children simply love stories. Story time is an exciting time for children who are always ready to have their imaginations stimulated. Refer to the animated reading sessions listed in this directory. For the more intent readers with an insatiable appetite for books head down to your local library or Malta’s Public Library in Floriana. (Activities – Libraries section)
 
Most toddlers and kids enjoy playing with musical toys such as xylophones, whistles and drums, so enrol in one of these joyful classes. It is toward the end of primary school that a child takes up music seriously so choose a music school that can advise you on choosing the instrument to which your child is best suited. (Activities – Music Lessons section)
 
Dancing improves muscular control and co-ordination in young children and can be fun. Malta has an amazing number of dance schools to choose from. Read through our dancing pages … (Activities – Dance section)
 
Playing and acting are physical accomplishments developed by toddlers and are used in more skilled and interesting games as a child grows up. Imitation is also a part of development and a child expresses this by dressing up and acting a part of their own mind.  Check out classes available in Malta. (Activities – Drama section)
 
 
With the Mediterranean surrounding the Maltese Islands it provides some of Malta’s most popular playgrounds. If water is to be enjoyed in safety children must be completely at home in it. All children should learn to swim. Swimming promotes health and gives great pleasure. It is inexpensive, can be enjoyed by everyone and can open the door to numerous exciting activities such as sailing, surfing, diving, canoeing, water skiing, water polo, competitive swimming and more. As swimming is not always taught in schools it is up to parents to help their children to learn to swim. (Sports Activities - Swimming section)
 
 

 

 
Travel
 
 
 
 
Childcare
 
 

Deciding on childcare 

 

Deciding on Childcare - Where do I start?

Choosing the right childcare may seem like a daunting task, especially if it is your first time. In today’s society, where it is becoming increasingly common for mum to return to work after maternity leave, having to rely on childcare is not an easy decision. Trust your instincts and carry out some research into childcare  centres to help you make an informed choice.

What are the carer-child ratios?

According to the national standards for childcare provisions the following ratios apply;

Age birth - 12 months - 1 carer to 3 children

Age 13 months - 24months - 1 carer to 5 children

Age 25 months - 36+ months - 1 carer to 6 children! 

Is there financial help towards my childcare costs?

Yes, there is! The government introduced a free childcare scheme in April 2014, whereby qualifying parents are entitled to free childcare based on the condition that both parents are either working or training. Application forms and a list of registered centres can be found on www.education.gov.mt. For further information and eligibility contact childcare@gov.mt or 2598 2174 / 2598 2772.

What will my child be doing in childcare?

Apart from being fed and changed he/she should be in an environment that stimulates his/her development. It is important that children at this age are shown adaptive prosocial skills by learning the concept of being kind to others and sharing. A childcare centre that promotes such social behaviours prepares your child for kindergarten. Ask your childcare centre about the ways in which they promote prosocial behaviour. ! 

Will they learn anything?

Of course they will! No matter what age your child is, they predominately learn through experience, social interaction and play. Ask your centre if they promote educational aspects to play. For example, do they introduce key themes through crafts or activities? Perhaps the introduction of colours through a block sorting activity. When children are exposed to themes through the use of play they are more likely to remember the theme as it was an enjoyable positive experience ! 

Mrs Georgina Fardoe 

MSc Child & Family Psychology

Childcare Centre Manager

Orange Tree Childcare Centre

 

Sqaq Il - Hofra, Gharghur +(356) 2713 4813  +(356) 9977 2080

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Free childcare to help families achieve a work/life balance

The Free Childcare for All scheme, is a budgetary measure for 2014, announced by the Ministry of Finance and implemented by the Ministry for Education and Employment.  The Scheme started  in April 2014, with more than 95 % of the registered child care centres applying to form part of it. New child care centres opening in Malta and Gozo are also registering to be part of the scheme.  The primary aims of the scheme is to both provide a more equitable and affordable provision of early care and education to all children irrespective of financial means and social background as well as to increase the active participation of females in the labour market. The proposal haalready proved a success with childcare centre providers prepared to invest in facilities and expand. The educational aspect of the initiative would be given priority, so that children enjoy a stimulating educational experience to serve as a stepping stone for their future educational attainment.

This initiative represents one of the Government’s major economic reforms, and through it, the Government is both increasing the female participation in the labour force, and also strengthening the country’s skills as the initiative is also available to those parents seeking to further their education.

Actions set out in this scheme include:

·   Families with both parents in full-time or part-time employment or in education will benefit from free childcare.

·    Parents will benefit from the equivalent  of their working hours as well one hour daily for commuting, together with an additional 10% of their working hours in childcare services per month.

·      Parents who are students studying on a part-time basis will be entitled to 20 hours while those studying full-time will benefit from 40 hours.

Application forms and a list of all childcare centres registered in the scheme can be downloaded from the website www.education.gov.mt. For further information on the scheme and eligibility please contact us onchildcare@gov.mt or 2598 2174 / 2598 2772.

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

 

Temper Tantrums in Kids

Temper tantrums are considered an essential part of child development which are expected to emerge during the toddler period (18months -3years). This period is a time of intense physical growth accompanied by increased activity. During this developmental stage, the child is expected to establish a distinct self that is separate from her parents. This explains why the child starts to assert herself where her favorite word becomes ‘no!’. Apart from the need to take more control over herself, this behavior may also stem from the frustration caused by an incomplete and unbalanced development of expressive language skills when compared with their more complete receptive language skills.

Toddlers tend to understand complex sentences however they are still very limited with regards to their communicative ability which many times does not exceed 2-3 worded sentences. Although temper tantrums are notorious to parents as their authority is being seriously challenged, if parents remain firm and in control the toddler will leave this stage with a secure relationship with her parents, trusting them to establish boundaries. How to cope with temper tantrums Address the behavior as soon as it starts without getting angry or giving in to your child. Say to your child, "When you stop crying we'll talk about it and see what can be done."   Then walk into the next room. Show love. It's okay to hold your child if she comes to you during a tantrum and she's too young to be left alone, but don't respond to what she wants until she calms down. Get some privacy. When in public ignore any glares you get, take your child to a private corner to wait for her to calm down. Tell her, "I'll sit down with you until you stop screaming." If she doesn't stop crying or screaming after three or four minutes, take her home. Parents need to learn how to deal with their own frustrations and anger in an effective manner. "Monkey see, monkey do." Have realistic expectations. Expecting a toddler to remain seated and sedate during church service or while in a fancy restaurant will only lead to frustration for both age groups.

Help your child find the proper verbal way of expressing their frustrations. ("I know you are mad that I won't give you more time on the swings, but it is time to go home and eat”) Preempt and Plan ahead. For example, "We have to stop watching TV when the timer rings for the second time.” This gives the child the opportunity to assert some control over the situation and develop an alternative approach to a frustrating event. Toddlers crave control. Allow simple choices that you can live with. For example, "Do you want some apple or banana at lunch?

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 

Baby Sign Language 

From the moment babies are born, they start to communicate by using sound and
natural gestures.  Baby Sign Language exploits this natural ability of babies and uses sign language to encourage two-way communication between parents and babies, before the babies can talk.
 
Baby Sign has been steadily gaining in popularity worldwide and has many benefits to
both the parent and the child.  As these benefits are becoming more widely recognized, more and more parents and childcare professionals are signing with their babies... so what is it all about and how can you get started?
 
The Deaf community has always signed with their children, so "baby sign" has always been around.   But more recently people have started to discover the benefits of using baby sign with hearing babies.
 
Research has shown that by using baby sign language with hearing babies before they can talk, you can increase IQ, self-esteem, communication skills, parent/baby bonding, and decrease tantrums and frustration.  With all these benefits, it's no wonder that baby signing is gaining popularity.
 
Baby sign language is based on adult sign language but with more flexibility so some signs are changed to make them easier for little hands to copy.  Everyone can enjoy the benefits of baby sign as it is very easy to learn and fun to practice.
 
Many people are still weary of baby sign language because they think it is a fad or only for deaf children.  Some people even think that by using signs you will somehow delay your baby's speech development.  All of these misconceptions have been proven wrong by extensive research carried out in America.  In actual fact using baby signs helps your baby develop communication skills and speech earlier that non-signing babies.
 
Just think - babies start to communicate from birth.  They start by using eye contact and facial expressions and as they gain more control over their bodies they may wave or clap hands.
 
By about 6 months your baby will have developed the motor skills needed to make signs, by 7-8 months your baby's memory will have developed enough to use the signs consistently.  However, your baby's vocal muscles will not have developed enough for comprehensible speech until about 18-24 months old!  That means you could have been communicating with your baby a whole 18 months earlier!
 
QUICK FACTS
 
•         You can start signing with your baby at any age - some parents start from birth.  A good time to start is around 5 months.
 
•         Your baby will probably sign back between 6-8 months, when his memory will have developed enough to store and use the signs regularly
 
•         Babies need 4-6 weeks to learn their first signs and to start to copy them back to you, so you will need to be patient.
 
•         Once a baby has learned his first signs, he will learn the next ones more quickly.
 
•         Baby signing does not delay speech - quite the opposite has been proven to be true.
 
•         By signing with your baby you are giving him the very best start in life, by giving him tools that allow him to communicate his needs to you without unnecessary crying and frustration.
 
HERE ARE JUST SOME OF THE PROVEN BENEFITS THAT BABY SIGNING CAN BRING:
 
•         Increase your baby's IQ
 
•         Improve your baby's language and communication skills
 
•         Strengthen your parent/baby bond
 
•         Reduce tantrums and frustration
 
•         Build your baby's self-confidence and self-esteem
 
Sylvana Brannon
 
 
 
 
 
 

The notion of child-care 

Children deserve the best possible care for their well-being and development. It is imperative that safe and developmentally appropriate children’s services are available to promote the holistic development of children and their families. 
 
The traditional aim of a child care centre is to provide a place for working parents to leave their children during working hours. However in actual fact, childcare centres cater for the formative years of a child s’ life. In this regard, the facilities aim, and are indeed obliged to provide an educational programme as well as a safe environment conducive to the well-being and education of, as well as emotional development of, the child. 
 
The promotion of such child care centres is being taken on the realisation that the sustainability of a country’s economy and social fabric depends on a strong work force where qualified, skilled and competent workers are given opportunities to find employment while at the same time start a family and enjoy family life. Thus, child day care centres provide the peace of mind for parents that their children are in good hands, in a safe and stimulating environment whilst being nurtured by qualified carers who are aware and have a sound knowledge of children’s development and needs. 
 
An intelligent and balanced use of child care is shown to benefit the child but one cannot adopt a one size fits all situation. Child care should be seen as an extension of parental attention, in fact it should serve as a continuation of what parents or primary care givers are obliged to provide at home. Frequent meetings with the provider as well as discussions on what works best for the child will guarantee that the child’s stay is a happy one.
 
These centres are filling the gap which traditionally was fulfilled by the grandparents who acted as the primary babysitters. However this trend is on the decrease due to the fact that the grandparents themselves might still be of an employable age. Apart from helping in reaching a work-family balance, childcare research has shown that high quality care can impact positively upon children's intellectual, linguistic and social skills.
 
As with any other service, child care needs to be regulated and monitored to ensure that the set standards are upheld. The Welfare Services Assessment Unit (WSAU) within the Department of Social Welfare Standards has been entrusted with the inspectorate role. In fact the WSAU inspects, monitors and assesses child day care services. The centres are expected to apply for registration with the Department which provides the necessary guidance. This registration procedure is intended to reassure parents who choose Registered Child Day Care Facilities for their children that the facility is striving to operate according to a set of established standards in the best interest of their children. 
 
In Malta, the publication of the National Standards for Child Care Facilities in 2006 was intended to ensure a better, safer and healthier environment for children. Prior to 2006, childcare provisions were not regulated, thus, the purpose of regulation and the setting of standards for this particular sector provides quality assurance for children attending such facilities and reassurance for their parents.
 
The level rating for the qualifications and the occupational standards for child carers and managers relates to another very positive recent development. This was launched by the Ministry for Justice, Dialogue and the Family together with the Ministry for Education and Employment so as to ensure that qualified persons are working within the centres as required by the 2006 National Standards. One can appreciate that the well-being of children cannot be left to chance and although the providers do have a leeway in the way they operate the facility, it must be kept in mind at all times that such services are being given for the benefit of the ultimate beneficiaries, that is, the children.   
 
Currently, there are 67 registered facilities, 47 of which are privately owned, 4 are run by the Church, 7 which are public-private partnerships and 9 Foundation for Educational services (FES) centres provided by the government which also provides means testing and thus caters for families with low incomes. The notable increase in registered child care centres reflects the demand for such centres as well as the measures taken in order to meet these demands. With this objective in sight, national funds as well as European Regional Development Funds (ERDF) have been made available to these child care centres to improve their services as well as encourage new ones to start operating.
 
Government’s commitment is to promote a view of childhood as an important phase of life in its own right and not just as preparation for adult life. Children must be allowed to live in the present and to realise their full potential. These are the aims underlining the National Children’s Policy which shall be launched shortly by the Ministry of Justice, Dialogue and the Family. The objectives outlined centre around the child as the holder of rights, and a subject liable to vulnerability. Ultimate success can be realised if children themselves feel the positive change.
 
Dr. Sandra Hili Vassallo – Director DSWS
 
 

 
 

Measuring up to our siblings 

We are born into our family and the relationships within weave the fabric of life. Children learn social competencies and social norms through their interactions with parents and siblings and family life becomes a complex, dynamic experience that has a direct influence on how they feel about themselves. The need to feel loved and to belong is innate – it is a primal need for every individual. For young children, the developing self is fragile and is easily damaged. The way a child sees himself or herself deep inside depends on the way significant people in their life react to them. Initially, their self-esteem forms in relation to parents, caregivers and siblings and sibling rivalry is inevitable. They tend to compare themselves to the more admired and favoured sibling. Our role as parents is to provide a ‘secure enough base’ that becomes a platform for future relationships. The family becomes the safe playground where they learn to feel competent, valid and to tolerate difference. It is the quality of our relationships that matter. Children want to feel loved and love is also spelt T-I-M-E. Balancing out time with each child individually also helps them feel validated. There is less need to compete for attention, thus reducing sibling rivalry. Meeting a child’s emotional needs helps him/her overcome potential feelings of inferiority. Challenging behaviour can occur when too few emotional needs are being met, such as the need for
Attention
Acceptance
Appreciation
Affection
Approval
Encouragement
Respect
Support
Comfort
Security
 
Every child’s needs also depends on his/her experience in the moment and when caregivers are attuned to such needs, the child feels seen and met. On the other hand, emotional withdrawal can be devastating. Children who feel loved and secure are better at forming healthy relationships. They feel less threatened, are more confident to explore new things, are less likely to be bullied or be a bully and more able to say “No” to peer-pressure when they are older.  
 
Anna Fenech holds an MA degree in Expressive Arts Therapy and is a Gestalt Psychotherapist.  She is also trained as a Psychotherapeutic Counsellor with children and young adults.  She works in different settings and also runs a private practice working with children and adults.  
 
 

 
Sport Activities 
 

Fees paid for sports activities - Tax Deductions

If your child is under sixteen years of age you may be entitled to a tax deduction. If the sportsactivity entity your child attends is registered with the Malta Sports Council you can claim adeduction against your chargeable income for the amount of fees paid up to a maximum ofone hundred Euro. Forms can be downloaded from www.ird.gov.mt  an www.sportmalta.org.mt or collected from Cottonera, Marsa and Tal-Qroqq SportsComplexes.

Ħlas fuq attivitajiet sportivi – Tnaqqies tat-Taxxa Jekk it-tfal tiegħek huma taħt is-sittax-il sena, tista’ tkun intitolat għall-tnaqqis fit-taxxa. Jekk l-entita’ sportiva li fiha jattendu t-tfal hija irreġistrata mal-Kunsill Malti għall-Isport, int tista’ tingħata tnaqqis fuq il-qliegħ taxxabli fuq il-ħlasijiet imħallsa sa massimu ta’ mitt Ewro. Il-formoli jistgħu jiġu mniżżla minn www.ird.gov.mt u www.sportmalta.org.mt jew inkella jinġabru mill-Kumplessi Sportivi tal-Kottonera, tal-Marsa u tal-Qroqq.

The Inland Revenue Department has recently issued a booklet outlining various deductions of fees paid in relation to:

 

1. School fees paid to private independent schools and/or kindergarten centres   

2. Fees payable for the services of a facilitator 

3. Fees paid for child-care services 

4. Fees paid for sport activities

To check whether your school and/or childcare centre are registered and to see if you are entitled to the above deductions, phone IRD Call Centre, Tel: 2296 2296 or Freephone: 8007 2297 or visit website http://www.ird.gov.mt

Id-dipartiment tat-taxxi nterni, reċentament ħareġ ktejjeb li juri it-tnaqqis ta’ ċerti miżati mħallsa li huma relatati ma’:

1. Miżati ta’ skejjel imħallsa lil skejjel indipendenti u/jew Kindergarten centres

2. Miżati mħallsa għas-servizzi ta’ facilitator

3. Miżati mħallsa għal servizzi ta’ child-care

4. Miżati mħallsa ghal għal attivitajiet ta’ sport 

Biex tiċċekkja jekk l-iskola jew childcare centre tiegħek hijiex irreġistrata u biex tara jekk intix eliġibbli ghal għal dan it-tnaqqis, ċempel IRD Call Centre, Tel:  2296 2296 jew Freephone:  8007 2297 jew żur is-sit http://www.ird.gov.mt

Malta Sports Scholarships were launched for persons wishing to specialise in training in a sports discipline or academically in a subject related to sports. Everyone can apply for the scholarships, including young persons. Where a child still attends obligatory education, they have to make separate arrangements to continue with their schooling in a school in thecountry where they would be studying or training. Application forms may be downloaded from www.sportmalta.org.mt or an email sent on sportsscholarships.mede@gov.mt

Malta Sports Scholarships gew imnedijja għal persuni li jixtiequ jispeċjalizzaw fit-taħriġ f'xi dixxiplina sportiva jew akkademikament f'suġġett relatat mal-isports. Kulħadd jista ' japplika għall-boroż ta' studju, inklużi persuni żgħażagħ. Fejn wild għadu jattendi edukazzjoni obbligatorja, huma għandhom jagħmlu arranġamenti separati biex ikomplu bl-edukazzjoni tagħhom fi skola fil-pajjiż fejn huma jkunu ser jistudjaw jew jitħarrġu. Formoli tal-applikazzjoni jistgħu jitniżżlu minn www.sportmalta.org.mt jew tista’ tibghat tibgħat email fuq sportsscholarships.mede @ gov.mt

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

General Advice


 

 

 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
Close
Subscribe to our free newsletter
SIGN UP to receive our regular newsletters with upcoming news and events on the Maltese Islands as well as some fantastic competitions!

Malta Baby & Kids Directory is created by mums for mums and childcarers.
Lisa Grech is the founder of the Malta Baby & Kids Directory and website. Together with Denise Briffa and Crysta Darmanin we combine work on the publication and website while bringing up lots of children (seven between us!).


Your name: Your e-mail address: