Vacancy Care's October Newsletter

October 2019


Hello everyone, welcome to our October newsletter! As always, we will be providing a preview of what is happening in our little community. This month, we take a closer look at Halloween. Do your children love it? Do they go trick or treating?

October brings an end to those chilly evenings and some lovely warm days. Spring is in full bloom, and Halloween takes place on 31st October. It serves as a reminder that the summer heat is now just another month away and school holidays won’t be far behind. 

Send us an email to let us know what you think of this newsletter. We would love to hear any suggestions, which articles you enjoyed, and what you would like to see more of!


Topic of the month - Halloween - do you get into it?

Halloween is known widely as a much-loved American tradition, but it actually derives from an ancient Celtic festival. The Celts were people who lived 2,000 years ago in a part of Europe now known as the UK, Ireland and the north of France. 

During the ancient festival of ‘Samhain’ on 31st October, the Celts believed the ghosts of the deceased would return to Earth. A hybrid of this festival and other variations eventually made its way to the United States, where Halloween and Trick-or-Treating became and remains a popular event on the annual calendar. 


While it is not as widely celebrated in Australia, Halloween is an opportunity for fun activities with the kids in the lead up to October 31st. Even if you don’t believe in taking the kids out trick or treating, there is no harm in doing a bit of ghostly craft, pumpkin art or making and dressing up in cute, colourful costumes.

“How I decided if I should let my two daughters Trick or Treat this Halloween.”

Author: Shona Hendley

Should you let your child go trick or treating? There are pros and cons to each side of the argument.

On the one hand, trick or treating is a good opportunity to meet and interact with neighbours, it teaches the kids about road safety, helps teach them good manners and it is FUN!

On the other hand, however, there are the so-called ‘Halloween Grinches’, who despise the tradition and believe it has no part in Australia. It can also be unsafe and scary for children without proper supervision.

Read on for the full list of pros and cons and decide for yourself.

“Halloween isn’t just an American holiday anymore - let’s embrace that.”

Author: Melina Mallos 

Halloween is an opportunity for children to learn about the origins of traditions from around the world. Yes, it can be a bit on the commercial side, there is no doubt about that, but it can be a lot of fun to make spooky decorations and costumes while learning more about how it all began. 

This article takes a look at the role of interactive learning, its place in education and the benefits of inclusive celebrations. Through fun activities, costumes, music, dance, food and drink, children learn about other cultures and traditions celebrated around the world. 


Read more at the full article.

What is the latest in child care?

“Toddlers biting at daycare.”

Author: Byron Devin

“Your child has been bitten by another child” or “your child has bitten another” are not words any parents wants to hear. But why do toddlers bite? What can you do about it when they are at daycare? 

This article takes an in-depth look at the most common reasons why children bite. It also provides advice to parents about how to handle biting at daycare and what are the best ways to stop a child from biting another. 

Refer to the full article to learn more about why toddlers bite.

“Childcare subsidy changes not delivering cost savings for all despite overhaul, report finds”

Author: Melinda Howells 

Are families actually benefiting from the massive overhaul of Australia’s child care payment and subsidy system? A report by the Australian Institute of Family Studies says no, with only a third of families surveyed enjoying a reduction in child care fees since July 2018. 

Although the subsidy is designed to cover up to 85% of childcare costs, depending on income, some families reported paying more than they had before the new subsidy came into effect. This article looks at a number of family circumstances and asks if it is actually worth it for some parents to go to work and put their child in care. 

You can read the full article here. 

Childcare development

0-12 month development

‘10 signs your breastfed baby is gaining weight'

Author: Jane Barry

All babies are different. They are born different and develop at different rates. They even put on different amounts of weight, with clear cut rules about weight gain in those early days. 

Breastfed babies even gain weight differently to bottle fed babies. But as a new parents, do you know what to look for and how to tell if your baby is gaining weight? This article examines the 10 signs your baby is gaining weight and staying healthy. 

Refer to the original article for the full list of books.

1-2 year development

Ten Reasons Toddlers are Awesome 

Author: Sarah Barr

Being a parent of a toddler, or two (or even three!) is really hard work. They are fussy. They are demanding. They throw tantrums over an incorrectly cut sandwich.

But they are also awesome! Toddlers are feisty, determined little people. They love cuddles with their parents. They make friends at the drop of a hat and they really do help life slow down a little bit. 

Parents often forget that this age won’t last forever, and this article takes a look at all the reasons to appreciate the toddler phase every single day. 


Read the article to view the full list of reasons.

2-3 year development

How to discipline a 2 year old

Author: Karen Gill

When you’re on the receiving end of your toddler’s temper tantrum, it is hard to know how to react. Do you walk away? Ignore them? Give in to their demands or bad behaviour? 

This article takes a look at some of the ways parents can discipline their toddler in a way that won’t negatively impact the child or their development. From thinking like a toddler, to giving them what they want on your terms, this article has some helpful tips for parents who are struggling with a headstrong, feisty toddler. 


See the full article for more.

3-4 year development 

How to handle potty training regression 

Author: Vincent Iannelli, MD 

Ahh, toilet training! Possibly the most frustrating journey a parent will take with their child. But what happens when you think your child has this toilet training business under control, only for them to regress? 

Children are usually toilet trained by age 4. Some pick it up earlier, or later, and some regress, even though they know what they should be doing. Regression includes holding on too long and not making it to the toilet on time, soiling underwear and refusing to use the toilet at all. 

 This article takes a look at why children regress, and what parents can do to help their child. 

Read the full article for more information.

4-5 year development

What should a four-year-old know? 

Author: Alicia Bayer 

Have you ever thought about what your child should know by the time they are four? You might be thinking along the lines of how to recognise their name, forming full sentences, counting to 10, or 20, or beyond….

This article takes a look at what a four year old should know, but with a bit of a twist on what is considered developmentally ‘normal’. For anyone who has even felt like motherhood is a competition for who can develop the ‘best’ kids at record pace, this article will let you know not everyone feels the same way. 

It is a worthwhile read for anyone worrying about their child’s development. Read the full article here.

Development of boys

Do boys really have a testosterone spurt at age four?

Author: Kate Steinbeck 

Are four year old boys just challenging in general, or is there a deeper mechanism taking shape at this age?

Controversial theories by Professor Mitchell Harman suggest boys experience a testosterone spurt at age four. But is there evidence to back up this claim? This article unpacks the theory of a rise in testosterone levels at the tender age of four, and explains some of the science behind this interesting concept. 


Decide for yourself: has your four-year-old had a testosterone spurt, or are they just being a typical little boy? Do they just play differently to girls, or is there a physiological reason?

You can read the full article here.

Development of girls

10 tips for raising a confident girl

Author: Chris Woolston 

Every parent wants their daughter to be confident, resilient and overall, happy in themselves and in life. But raising a confident daughter is easier than it sounds. What if you’re not a confident parent yourself and have no idea where to start? 

In this article, you will read 10 helpful tips for raising a confident daughter, including some simple activities to encourage assertiveness, how to prepare her for sexism and how to find strong female role models for her. 

It also takes a look at the importance of a healthy body image, not being too quick to help her with chores or educational activities, and encouraging her to play sports if she desires. 

Refer to the original article for the full list of tips.

Paper Plate Skeleton

This fun activity with paper plates teaches kids about the skeleton. It is easy to make and you can hang it on the front door or around the house. Perfect for getting the house Halloween ready!


Read on for further instructions

Pumpkin Toilet Roll Lantern 

This cute pumpkin lantern uses a craft favourite - the empty toilet roll tube - to create a cool Halloween-inspired lantern. It is perfect for an easy morning or afternoon of craft. 


Detailed instructions provided here

Puffy Ghost

This simple ‘puffy ghost’ is easy to put together, making it a perfect activity for toddlers. All it takes is a paper plate and other common items you will most likely have on hand at home. This craft activity even comes with a free, downloadable and printable template! 


See the full instructions here.

Googly Eye Headbands 

Another super easy craft for kids!

These googly eye headbands are great as part of a three-eyed Alien or scary monster Halloween costume! 


Continue reading for instructions.