No one ever said parenting was easy. It can feel especially difficult as an expat without a support system close by. Whether it’s a picky eater, a sleep-challenged baby or a toddler prone to tantrums, we’ve found some classes that can help (and help you not feel so alone)!
1. FUSSY EATER BEGONE
The course: Fussy Kids Cooking Course, Expat Kitchen
If you are concerned that your little one’s fussy eating habits are causing their nutrition levels to take a dive, worry no longer. The chefs at Expat Kitchen have created the perfect course for you. Within their boutique kitchen in Little India, you will learn how to cook a host of dishes that come filled with hidden vegetables.
Priced $425 for a three-hour course.
2. CREATE A WATER BABY
The course: Swimming Lessons for Babies, AquaBambinos Swim School
Run by two mums, this fun class helps parents build water confidence in their children. Through the use of songs and toys, babies are encouraged to feel at home in an aquatic environment. Parents are shown how to hold their infants in the pool and also introduce submergence and floatation to their children.
For babies aged 6 to 35 months. Trial session $35.
3. BOND WITH YOUR BABY
The course: Baby Massage, Mom n Baby
Aromatherapy is not just for adults, your mini-me will love the pampering too. Mom n Baby’s Baby Massage sessions not only help boost your little one’s mood, it will help regulate his or her sleep cycle. The therapists will guide you through the techniques so that you can form a closer bond with your baby. For babies aged 1 to 24 months.
Priced $600 for a five-week course.
4. BE A BREAST-FEEDING GURU
The course: Baby Café, Mother & Child
Still a little in the dark about breast-feeding? Not sure whether you’d rather have the convenience of a bottle? The UK breast-feeding concept clinic Baby Café is now in Singapore, at the pre-and post-natal centre, Mother & Child at Tanglin Mall. Each week, Baby café holds a mini coffee morning where pregnant and nurturing mums can share experiences as well as chat to the centre’s lactation experts and get some expert advice.
5. SING LULLABIES THAT CALM
The course: Newborn Class, Musical Monkeys
Whether you’ve got the rhythm or not, you can still use music to help support the development your baby’s senses. During this hour-long class, parents learn how to communicate with their newborn baby through song. You are taught songs that will help stimulate them, as well as lullabies to calm them down.
For babies aged 0 to 12 months. Trial session $25.
6. BOOST THEIR LANGUAGE SKILLS
The course: PlayNest, Julia Gabriel Centre
Help boost your child’s language skills by enrolling them at Julia Gabriel Centre’s PlayNest. This innovative English language class encourages parents to join in with the sessions, creating a sense of security in the child’s mind. You will be taught the songs and stories they learn at the centre so you can reinforce it at home.
For children aged 6 to 18 months. Priced $1,082.84 for a 11-week course.
7. HAVE THE POWER OF OBSERVATION
The course: Discover With Your Child, Blue House Nursery & International School
Increase your observation skills with a little help from Blue House. During these discovery sessions, you will be able to become a natural observer of your child. Whether it’s during nature, cooking or music sessions, parents will learn the techniques the teachers use to stimulate learning and concentration. You can then practise at home.
For toddlers to three-year-olds. Priced from $20.
8. COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR INFANT
The course: Baby Signs Singapore
Hungry? Tired? Need their favourite toy? You don’t have to wait until they are old enough to speak before you can communicate with your baby. Certified baby signs instructor Kate Moreau will teach you and your baby a variety of hand signs that will help you “talk” to your baby about bedtime, meal time and getting dressed. Kate uses Beebo the Baby Signs Bear, who will sign throughout songs and stories, and flashcards are also given out to help baby (and mum).
For children aged 4 to 24 months old. Priced from $30 (various locations),
9. BE THE FOURTH EMERGENCY SERVICE
The course: First Aid Class, ParentLink
If the only thing you could do in case of an emergency is call 995, maybe you need to boost your first aid skills and book a class with ParentLink. The St John Ambulance-trained expert will come to your home and, during the four-hour course, show you the basics in first aid and CPR.
Priced from $120 each.
10. STOP TANTRUMS WITH EASE
The course: Parenting With Confidence, Singapore Focus On The Family
Worried that you’re not doing the best job? This course gives busy parents the tools they need to help turn their kids into independent, levelheaded adults. Course for parents of newborns to six-yearolds help define your parenting style, while those with children aged 7 to 12 years will learn more about communication and helping kids with decision making.
Priced $60 (adult), $90 (couple).
11. SET A HEALTHY EXAMPLE
The course: Strolltastic classes, Bloom’n Fit
Want to set a good example for your little one? Then sign up for Bloom ’n Fit’s Strolltastic Classes. These strength and conditioning sessions not only whip you into shape, they also show your mini-me how much fun a fitness session is. The whole family can join in the workout—babies go for a ride as you powerwalk your stroller around the park, while older children are invited to join in with some exercises.
Trial session free, $20 thereafter.
12. BE A SLEEP MASTER
The course: Singapore Supernanny
If you are more likely to see a shooting star than have your baby sleep throughout the night, don’t panic. Singapore Supernanny, Zoe Chu offers a sleep consultation package. She starts with a 30 minute phone consultation first, and then, if you need more, she has a sleep consultation package to help bub and mum get a good night’s sleep. She won’t expect you to leave a baby unattended to cry alone. She will only offer suggestions that you are comfortable with.
Priced $100 for the 30-minute phone call; $590 for the sleep consultation package, firstname.lastname@example.org
By Harper’s Bazaar Junior, August 2015