Covid-19 Help: Explaining the Corona Virus to Kids

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corona virus

With South Africa currently on lock down, Pixie has been struggling to understand the corona virus is so dangerous. I find it difficult to explain certain things at her level of understanding and sometimes just get it completely wrong.

There are so many resources out there to help people explain exactly what Corona virus is, so I thought I’d share what I found online to help others.

The Conversation website has great tips on how to answer questions your children are most likely to ask about Corona.

When stress is heightened — which it is for all of us right now because of the COVID-19 pandemic — children become aware of it and they try to locate the source of the stress. It is important to both acknowledge their concerns and be open to discussing them.

Helping children to make sense of the consequences of COVID-19 and helping them to organize their thoughts and feelings is the best approach.

There have been many sites that have created Covid-19/Corona Virus worksheets and activities. Here are a few I have found so far.

The Dads Net shared this really awesome FREE Book which is great to explaining Covid-19, corona virus, to your children
Corona Virus

Twinkl has TONS of resources available and have opened up their site to help parents who are under quarantine. Here are their Covid-19 Resources.

FREE! – UKS2 What Is Coronavirus? Daily News PowerPoint With Teacher Guidance
Corona Virus
Daily News PowerPoint to help you answer questions about the coronavirus and discuss what they have seen in the news. It is written and designed for KS2 children. The Daily News PowerPoint includes factual information about what the coronavirus is and how people are working to stop it spreading. It also includes a slide to help children explore what they can do when they are upset by the news.

Coronavirus Social Situation
Corona Virus
If any of the children under your care are confused or worried about the coronavirus situation, this Coronavirus Social Situation might be just what they need.

This illustrated social story for kids uses child-friendly language to explain what COVID-19 is, as well as why many people are being asked to stay at home right now.

The information is delivered in a friendly and reassuring tone, with the aim to calm down children who might be scared and provide them with information on how they can stay healthy.

Coronavirus Diary
Corona Virus
Although school closures and learning from home present lots of challenges, it is possible to find and celebrate the positives.

It is also really important for well being to look for the positive side of this unprecedented situation.

Use this lovely diary page to help your child to record what they have done during the week, to record their physical activity, to celebrate the lovely things that have happened and to plan for the week ahead.

COVID-19: What Are Your Worries and How Can You Cope?
Corona Virus
This simple resource will help children to articulate their fears in the current pandemic and talk about ways in which to calm themselves.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Supporting Pupils with SEND
Corona Virus
During school closures, schools are advised to make assessments on a case-by-case basis for pupils with SEND on an education, health and care (EHC) plan, based on health and safeguarding considerations. Our guide summarises the key guidance from the Department for Education as well as some guiding principles from NASEN.

Kiddie Charts has shared a Free Covid-19 time capsule worksheets.
Corona Virus

K5Learning has shared 6 Coronavirus Worksheets
Corona Virus
Understanding and avoiding Coronavirus for kids
Communicating with kids about Coronavirus is important to calm their fears and help them develop healthy habits. We’ve created some worksheets that we hope parents and teachers will find helpful. We’ve also listed some online resources about Coronavirus and kids below. Stay safe!

Mamma &m Bear has shared 28 free resources to help your children understand Coronavirus. She’s a fellow South African Mommy blogger.
Corona Virus

Have your children asked about the Corona virus? How are they coping with the lock down in your area?

Stay safe




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Why is Breakfast Important?

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Why is Breakfast Important
Why is breakfast important? There is so much contradictory information out there, some believe that skipping breakfast, ie intermittent fasting, is good for you and others, the majority, believe that skipping breakfast can be detrimental.

Last week I attended the launch of the New Recipe Nestle Milo Cereal and during this launch, the amazing Anne-Marie De Beer (who game me some really great advice in managing my Type 2 Diabetes) gave a talk on the importance of breakfast. It got me thinking, why is it so important that we start every day with a good, healthy breakfast?

Studies show that eating a healthy breakfast (as opposed to the kind containing doughnuts) can help give you:

* A more nutritionally complete diet, higher in nutrients, vitamins and minerals
* Improved concentration and performance in the classroom or the boardroom
* More strength and endurance to engage in physical activity
* Lower cholesterol levels

Eating breakfast is important for everyone, but is especially so for children and adolescents. According to the American Dietetic Association, children who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and on the playground, with better concentration, problem-solving skills, and eye-hand coordination.

Benefits of Eating Breakfast
* Breakfast decreases appetite.
* You eat less.
* You will improve your memory
* You can prevent type 2 diabetes
* You will weigh less

Is is healthy to skip breakfast?

It depends. The simple answer is to eat if you are hungry. Some people, like me, aren’t hungry in the morning, whilst some might pass out if they don’t eat. A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition debunks the myth that having breakfast is required for weight loss success. Researchers hint that if you don’t eat breakfast, it’s not the end of the world if you skip it.

What can we feed our children that is quick and easy doesn’t take ages to prepare?

Three out of the four of my children love breakfast cereals and, like many moms, I’m loathed to give them sugar filled cereals in the morning when they are meant to focus and concentrate on their school work in the mornings. There is finally a healthier cereal that doesn’t turn the children into little sugar fueled monsters.

The kidlets love the new Milo cereal. Pixie has never like breakfast cereals and I was curious to see how she would react to it. I’m happy to announce that she loves it. So I call this new recipe a win! Well done Nestle!!!

Milo Energy Cereal, now contains less sugar and more benefits! Each serving of MILO Energy Cereal contains only 1 ½ teaspoon of sugar and is high in fibre, free from artificial colours and has 7 vitamins and minerals to kick-start your kid’s active day.

Through surveys, Nestle discovered what we, as mothers, want to feed our children in the mornings to give them the fuel to push them through a busy morning of learning and physical activities. In light of their findings, they improved their Milo greatly by changing the much loved recipe, but still keeping the yummy taste. They have reduced the sugar and changed to using Whole Grains, to name but a scant few.

The new Milo cereal now contains the following ingredients: Cereal Grains (Whole Grain Wheat, Maize Semolina), Sugar, Barley Malt Extract, Fat Reduced Cocoa Powder, Vitamins and Minerals (Calcium, Niacin, Ferrous Sulphate, Pantothenic Acid, Folic Acid,Vitamin B6, Riboflavin), Vegetable Oil, Full Cream Milk Powder, Salt, Emulsifier: Soya Lecithin,Flavourings, Antioxidant: Tocopherols.

What do you feed your children for breakfast?




MILO whole grain energy cereal – Kickstart your day
MILO whole grain energy cereal
The Many Benefits of Breakfast
5 Health Benefits of Eating Breakfast
When Skipping Breakfast May Actually Be Good For You

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Healthy Living: Product Review: Real Kids Sunglasses

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In February this year, I was fortunate enough to attend the Gauteng Mom Blog Meetup and was given the opportunity to review the Real Kids Sunglasses, imported into South Africa by O-V Optics.

Pixie just loves her sunglasses. These glasses are AWESOME and virtually indestructible. They are pricey, but well worth it. We will be getting the older 3 each a pair over time.

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Here are the two available styles

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Real Kids Shades – Now in South Africa!

100% UV protective sunglasses for children!

Our product-testing program is rigorous and comprehensive. All Real Kids sunglasses are third-party tested to provide 100% UVA/UVB protection as measured by the strictest American, European, and Australian governing bodies.

All our sunglasses are:

100% UVA/UVB Protection

CPSIA Compliant – Lead-free with no bisphenol A and no phthalates

CE Certified

Rx Capable – you can fit your Real Kids Shades with prescription lenses

FDA Approved

Melanoma International Foundation Seal of Approval

The Melanoma International Foundation (MIF) has awarded Real Kids its Seal of Approval. This signifies that Real Kids has met MIF standards for 100% UV protective eyewear for children. MIF developed its Seal of Approval endorsement as part of its mission to prevent serious sun damage and has recognized Real Kids for helping to protect children from permanent UV eye damage.
These sunglasses are perfect for kids. They bend and twist without breaking and offer the best UV protection to the eyes. Watch the video below to see how these awesome glasses sand up to abuse.

What is UV?

UV or Ultraviolet Radiation can be classified as UVA, UVB or UVC according to wavelength
UV light is not visible to the naked eye.
UVA and UVB rays penetrate the eye whereas most UVC rays are absorbed by our ever thinning ozone layer.

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When UV is absorbed by a molecule, energy is transferred to the molecule and causes damage to the tissue. This causes changes to DNA, resulting in distorted proteins and death of cells.

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Protecting your eyes from UV

A large brimmed hat can provide up to 50% protection from UV
Wrapped sunglasses with a UV 400 filter on the lenses provide maximum protection from UV
Tinted lenses or sunglasses with no UV filter cause the pupils to dilate even more in sunlight than if one were to wear no lenses at all – this allows even more light flood into the eye resulting in increased UV exposure.
Bad sunglasses = MORE damage than no sunglasses!

UV Damage in Children

Children are more vulnerable to UV damage as they have larger pupils and clearer lenses – a greater amount of light penetrates the ocular tissues causing an increased risk of complications.
Children spend more time outdoors – approximately 3 times more than adults.
The lenses in children’s eyes do not block as much UV radiation as they do in adults’ eyes, putting them at increased risk for sun damage to the eyes.
UV damage is cumulative – when damage occurs it can never be reversed, only treated.

You can read more on the UV Damage Effects on the Eye HERE.

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O-V Optics Pty Ltd – Protecting the vision in your child’s future
O-V Optics Pty Ltd was founded, and is owned and operated by Tanya and Zulé. The two head up a team of passionate individuals, sharing strong family values and the belief that they all have the right to protect our children in any scenario imaginable. The O-V Team’s mission is to educate and inform about the dangers of UV exposure to the eyes of children, so empowering and enabling you, as a parent, to protect your little treasure.

Sunglasses are a necessity for all, not just an accessory for some!
Tanya qualified as an optometrist from The University of Johannesburg and has extensive experience in practice and in optical sales, having consulted for Johnson & Johnson Medical and Hoya Vision Care. Her perseverance and dedication make her an exceptional problem solver, never giving up until a solution is created. Tanya’s broad optical knowledge is the core of the outstanding service and products O-V Optics Pty Ltd deliver.

Zulé, an adventurer at heart, completed her Psychology qualification through UNISA, while travelling the World. She was enlightened and astounded by destinations such as the natural diversity of England, South Korea, Seychelles, and the South of France in the Mediterranean. She filled various positions in various industries learning from many, but ultimately practicing her passion as a Professional Photographer. Zulé’s unique worldly experiences give her an edge when connecting with people and ensuring O-V Optics Pty Ltd stick to our core values.

Together the duo traveled the South American continent, spending six months volunteering in the rural countryside, touring cities, and appreciating natural wonders – even undertaking the 4 day hiking journey to Macchu Picchu. The two vowed that they will not return home until they had formulated a solid plan to change the future of as many others as possible for the better. With Tanya’s passion and expertise in the optical field and Zule’s vision, literally, as a photographic artist her most prized gift, it could be expected that they would want to protect the sight of others for the future. With the shared belief that prevention is better that cure, and that pro-active living is the way to a healthy future they set out on a mission to protect young eyes.

What they Value Most

– Families First – YOUR family, OUR families and The O-V Team as a big, supportive Family

– Open Honesty Always – They are here to give you the facts

– Create Happiness and Fun – They always leave you with a SMILE

– Embrace Creativity and Change – They find new ways to do things betterSunglasses at School

– Always Passionate, Always Humble


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Our MISSION –They create greater awareness of the effects of UV sun damage on the eyes of children by informing parents, teachers and children of the imminent dangers. They encourage the habitual use of UVA and UVB protective eyewear as part of our ingrained culture, and as part of your child’s school uniform for maximum protection every day.

They pave the way to the positive societal opinion that wearing sunglasses when outside is a necessity FOR ALL, not only for adults, but their children too. They do this through speaking engagements – directly with you, parents, teachers and children. They provide necessary health and safety information that you may not be aware of as part of The “Sunglasses at School” Program, a FIRST in South Africa. This, in turn, creates the need for a product that can be trusted by parents to offer the desired protection their children need. They source only the best quality in international, children specific frame designs. O-V Optics Pty Ltd distributes your child’s ordered sunglasses to member schools directly and a trained professional will fit each pair to your child’s unique features to ensure optimum comfort and protection.

They are the industry leader in the supply of children’s sunglasses as they offer unmatched quality and value in our products and services.

Speak to your principal TODAY to become part of The “Sunglasses at School” Program!

Most Importantly WHY THEY DO IT?

They believe the dangers of UV damage to the eyes aren’t being spoken about enough and they will make the facts known by educating and informing as many as possible.

They believe YOU, as a parent, have the right to protect your child from any danger that may befall your little one.

They believe you have the right to a quality product that provides value for money and protects your child’s eyes adequately.

They believe in providing a quality service, ensuring optimum comfort and safety to your child.

They believe every child has the right to eye protection and aim to establish Charitable Projects in lesser fortunate communities that will provide access to decent eye protection for all.

O-V Optics Pty Ltd – Protecting the vision in your child’s future

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Healthy Living: Product Review: NUK & The Importance of Water Consumption in Children

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Product Review: NUK Junior and Sport Bottles

For over 50 years now, NUK has been ensuring that mothers and their children enjoy a sense of wellbeing and security like no other in their constantly evolving world. NUK soothers were designed by Dr. Müller and Prof. Balters who used their expert knowledge of orthodontics and found that the mother’s nipple changes shape as she breastfeeds. It does this by adapting optimally to the baby’s mouth. This is why they developed the natural NUK Shape for soothers, which is exceptionally well-suited to the baby’s jaw. Most South African orthodontists use NUK soothers for their own children. All NUK products are the result of the latest medical know-how and the practical experience of mothers and midwives. Only in this way can NUK offer every mother the sense of security she needs to make such an exciting time the happiest time of her life.

We met up with the representatives of NUK SA at the Gauteng Mom Blog Meetup in February. I was given the opportunity to review two of their products, the Junior Cup for Pixie and Sports Cup for Koko. We love these bottles so much that we bought Fifi a Sports Cup too!

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These bottles are the perfect size for their little hands and hold the perfect amount of water for car rides and extra murals. Their bottles get filled with water every morning and popped in the refrigerator. They fit perfectly into the door for easy access. I just love the themes they have gone with on each of the bottles. Pixie’s Junior Cup has a cute little girl that reminds me of Alice in Wonderland on the side. Koko’s Sports Cup has bikers on it and Fifi’s Sports Cup has a ballerina on the side. They love their “cool water bottles” and they aren’t “babyish” at all! They go everywhere with the children when we go out and have helped with increasing the children’s water consumption.

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We only use these bottles for water and tea. I don’t recommend putting milky drinks into these as the spouts do not disassemble and will make cleaning the milk out nearly impossible. You can swap out the sport sipper for a non spill sippy spout (sold separately) that is easy to clean. I use these with Pixie when we travel (the girl LOVES her milk).
nuk spout

Junior Cup – Push Pull
nuk junior cup
For fun and games in all weather. Ultra-lightweight and unbreakable. For young adventurers aged 3 and upwards.

The bigger and more active your child is, the more he or she will need to drink. The NUK Junior Cup with its 300ml capacity and Push-Pull Spout 3 is ideal for children who are already exploring the world on their own two feet.

Features and Benefits:

  • with non-spill push-pull spout that can be easily opened and closed by any three year old: simply press, pull and drink!
  • made from ultra-lightweight and extremely sturdy polypropylene (PP) material
  • includes a clip to prevent the spout from getting lost and an integrated protective cap to make sure nothing falls out!

Designs: Mickey, knight, Alice
Size: 300ml

Sports Cup – Push Pull

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For fun and games in all weather. Ultra-lightweight and unbreakable. For young adventurers aged 3 and upwards. A new attractive companion for the whole family!

The bigger and more active your child is, the more he or she will need to drink. The NUK Sports Cup is the biggest of NUK Cups with its 450ml capacity and Push-Pull Spout it is ideal for children who are already exploring the world on their own two feet.

Features and Benefits:

  • 450ml capacity ideal for games and sport
  • With pull-pull soft silicone spout that can be easily opened and closed by any three year old: simply press, pull and drink!
  • made from ultra-lightweight and extremely sturdy polypropylene (PP) material
  • includes a clip to prevent the spout from getting lost and an integrated protective cap to make sure nothing falls out!

Designs: Ballerina, Bike, Mickey, Minnie & Mickey
Size: 450ml


The Importance of Water Consumption in Children

Why should we be concerned about kids drinking water? Water is a vital nutrient and, because it has no calories and is free when it comes from the tap, it is the ideal drink for thirsty kids.

The Kidlets drink copious amounts of water every day. I rarely have juice in the house and when I do, they are limited to a glass or two a day.

Many people are surprised at the amount of water they drink and that they will ask for more if their water bottles are empty. I am often asked how they can get their children to drink water and not demand juice, milkshakes, etc. My answer is simple, if its not accessible to them, they will drink water when they are thirsty.

Children and adolescents are not consuming enough water, instead opting for sugar-sweetened beverages (sodas, sports and energy drinks, milks, coffees, and fruit-flavored drinks with added sugars), 100% fruit juice, and other beverages. Drinking sufficient amounts of water can lead to improved weight status, reduced dental caries, and improved cognition among children and adolescents.

While water drinking is important to both adults and children, children are more likely to lose water during activity because of their size and might be less aware of their thirst than adults, Kristen E. D’Anci, a psychology researcher at Tufts University, has pointed out.

Here is a great tool for calculating how much water needs to be consumed per age.


Signs of dehydration

When our bodies don’t have enough water, we are said to be dehydrated. One of the first signs of dehydration is feeling thirsty.

If you think you may not be getting enough fluids, check whether you have any of these other common signs of dehydration:

  • dark urine and not passing much urine when you go to the toilet
  • headaches
  • lack of energy
  • feeling lightheaded

Encouraging Consumption of Water in School and Child Care Settings: Access, Challenges, and Strategies for Improvement
Water Consumption Webtool: How Much Water to Drink A Day?
Easy access may boost kids’ water consumption
Water and drinks
Water In Schools
NUK South Africa




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Healthy Living: Product Review: Farm Fresh Online

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A farm fresh farmer’s box of carefully selected, locally grown fruit and veggies delivered to your door, anywhere in Johannesburg. is Joburg’s first online Green Grocer delivering farm fresh produce to your home or office. Started in November 2014 FFO has grown considerably and earned a reputation for quality service and produce. Soon they will be delivering Pantry Fillers like herbs, olive oil, honey and more as well as dairy and farm fresh eggs.

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I had the opportunity to review the products and service of Farm Fresh Online and I must say, I am very impressed with the quality of the produce we received. Farm Fresh Online is an online business that delivers fresh fruit and vegetables (depending on your order) right to your door. I ordered the Family Seasonal Veggie Box and the Family Fresh Fruit Box. The prices are incredibly good and the quality of the produce is great.

I HIGHLY recommend anyone within Johannesburg to make use of this service.

Below are pictures of the produce we received. These photos were taken the day of the delivery. Most of the fruit was consumed within the first 5 days, LOL. The convenience of the delivery has made my life so much easier and we no longer need to stand in queues on weekends with the kids asking for everything their eyes see. This way I get what I need for the week. The kidlets are excited to see what gets delivered every week and can’t wait to tuck in. Those carrots never last the whole week, they get eaten straight from the bag!

Family Seasonal Veggie Box

The Family Seasonal Veggie Box contains a variety of 15 to 18 different seasonal vegetables every week. Included are all of your staple favorites to sustain the household for a week. To give each week its own flavour, they also throw in whatever interesting and exciting seasonal fruits and veggies South African farmers are growing.

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1kg Potatoes

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1kg Tomatoes

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1kg Brown Onions and a head of garlic

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Large cucumber

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Large butternut squash

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Cocktail tomatoes

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1kg Carrots

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4 Avocados

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6 Gem Squash

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Pack courgettes

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Pack of small aubergine

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3 Bell peppers

Family Fruit Box

The Family Fresh Fruit Box contains a variety of 6 to 10 different fresh fruits every week.

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4 Mangoes

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2 Pineapples

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Naartjies (clementines)

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Large red apples

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Purple plums

The fruit and veggies lasted well over 2 weeks and as a result we have decided to rather place the weekly order for the Family Fruit and Veggie Box. The Family Fruit and Veggie Boxes contain a variety of 16 to 20 different fruits and vegetables every week. Included are all of your staple favorites to sustain the household for a week. To give each week its own flavour, they also throw in whatever interesting and exciting seasonal fruits and veggies South African farmers are growing.




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