When you’re meant to spend a year with a person you’ve never met before, it’s not the grand gestures that make the experience amazing, but the little things. It’s every dinner we share together, most of them entertained by the days adventures and things learned not only by our 2 year old daughter but our au pair Annalena. It’s the new games, songs, and dances she’s taught our daughter. It’s how she engages in hours of imaginary play, donning all sorts of costumes and building or making all sorts of art and craft. It’s singing loudly and enthusiastically in music class or at home to the Wiggles! It’s our family’s excitement to be learning German and experiencing traditional German food in our home. It’s the trust Annalena has earned from our family because she makes smart decisions in every aspect of her own life and always puts the needs of [...]
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It's been almost ten months now since I first arrived here in Wellington, and I'm still just as happy and excited to be here as I was that first evening when I got off the plane. And I owe it all to my wonderful host family; John, Andrea, James and Sam, and Charlie! From that very first night to now they have been nothing but welcoming and supportive, and I think that has made all the difference. I very quickly felt like I was part of the family, rather than someone who just lived here, and that in turn has made this year so much more fun and rewarding for me. Before I left for New Zealand, everyone kept warning me about homesickness and even after got here there was still a lot of talk about homesickness and how to cope with it. And to be honest, all that talk [...]
Children start learning numeracy skills from the time they’re born. This learning happens through everyday play and activities. As a child gets older, they learn more numeracy and maths skills, including understanding numbers, counting, solving number problems, measuring, sorting, noticing patterns, adding and subtracting numbers and so on. When you talk with your child about maths concepts in your everyday activities, it helps them understand how and why maths is useful. So depending on what your child’s ages and stages are there are several different ways that you can support their learning and development. Numeracy for under twos. Your baby loves hearing your voice and enjoys stories and songs with repetition, rhyme and numbers. Some things you might already be doing, or could start doing, with your baby to build numeracy skills include: Counting: The first one’s the easiest and most obvious and is simply to count. When [...]
The Gascoigne family would love to nominate our very special Michelle Kampfmann for Au Pair of the Month. Michelle has been with us for eight months now and we wish she could stay forever! Michelle is a shining light and beacon of positivity in our household. Every morning we all wake up to a happy Michelle who calmly helps our two children, aged 2 and 5 years, start their day. From the instant connection we had during our interview to now her 8th month in New Zealand, Michelle has felt part of our family. Michelle is adventurous and creative with the children, from huge duplo creations, to beautiful artwork, mammoth indoor huts, to baking, to dance parties… no two days are the same. Michelle seamlessly took over from our previous wonderful au pair Becci and the children fell in love with Michelle straight away. Michelle has kindly kept up [...]
Seven month ago I first saw you – Finley, Miles, Jody and Charlie! From the plane steps I saw you all waiting for me with the poster “Kia Ora Gina!“ which made me realize I finally arrived in New Zealand – my home for the next year. Whenever I'm coming back to Taranaki and see the mountain, I know I'm coming home. It was you who made it a home for me and I can't be more thankful for what you have done for me. It's impossible to write it all down or finding the right words for it. Nevertheless I'll try to describe how you made Taranaki as my second home in just a few weeks. From the very first day your whole family was welcoming me and treating me as a family member. Everyone was already telling me what fun things we'll do together in summer and [...]
Au Pair Link Named as Finalist in IBM Best Workplaces Awards for 2017 Au Par Link has been named as a finalist in Small category of the 2017 IBM Best Workplaces Awards, based on New Zealand's largest and longest running study of workplace climate and employee engagement. The Best Workplaces Survey identifies the best places to work in New Zealand, as rated by employees. Over 35,000 employees from 173 organisations, across both private and public sectors, participated in the survey in 2017, providing their perceptions of their workplace, leaders, and aspects of their employment. This year, 43 companies have reached finalist status across five categories; Small, Small-Medium, Medium-Large, Large and Enterprise. "Au Pair Link is in elite company, and among the best organisations in New Zealand at leading, involving, enabling and valuing their employees. Becoming a finalist is evidence and recognition of a strong culture and employment brand," [...]