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The 2015 Shake Out: Is your family prepared?

ShakeOut: Is your family prepared for an earthquake?

It’s 1:15 in the afternoon, you’ve just finished your lunch and it’s time to settle back into the workload awaiting your appreciated time and attention. As you begin to steady your thoughts on the tasks that lie ahead, the ground beneath your feet has a different idea. Your thoughts and body are no longer steady at all as the rumbling and shaking brings you to the floor. An earthquake is occurring, do you know what to do? Do you know where your family members are? Do you have a plan? Do you have food and water to last you for three days? If not, perhaps it’s time to make a plan in case you are ever in this situation.

According to Statistics New Zealand only 18% of households met the requirements for ‘basic’ preparation for a natural disaster in 2010. Basic preparation includes three days supply of water, three days supply of food and a household emergency plan. These statistics are quite alarming; although New Zealand only has a natural disaster risk of 4.69% (other countries such as Vanuatu have 36.43% risk) it’s still imperative to be prepared, especially for those with small children.

To encourage Kiwi’s to become more prepared, the government has organised ‘ShakeOut’, a nation-wide earthquake drill. Businesses, organisations, schools, preschools, households and individuals from all around the country are invited to participate in the earthquake-drill taking place on October 15th 2015 at 9:15am. The drill has been organised to practice what to do in the event of such an emergency so that us Kiwi’s can be better prepared. In light of this topic, it leaves the opportunity to be equipped with knowledge on what to do during an earthquake, what you can do now to prepare, and how to respond after. At Lighthouse, we are holding seminars in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch on this issue so that our families can be in the best position in terms of preparation if an earthquake was to occur.

For those of you who are not with Lighthouse, we have provided an overview of what can be done before, during and after an earthquake so that you and your family can be prepared too.

The ‘before’ is all about preparation, there are suggestions below for preparing an emergency kit and an emergency plan.
In you Emergency Kit:
There are two options for an emergency kit; you can buy a pre-made one for four people at the price of $275 from Alternatively you can make one at home. For those of you who do decide you want to make one at home, here is a list of items you may want to include in your kit:
• Torch with spare batteries or a self-charging torch
• Radio with spare batteries
• Wind and waterproof clothing, sun hats, and strong outdoor shoes
• First aid kit and essential medicines
• Blankets or sleeping bags
• Pet supplies
• Face and dust masks
• Check all batteries every 3 months.
• Food and water for 3 days or more
• Non-perishable food (canned or dried food)
• Food, formula and drinks for babies and small children
• Water (at least 3 litres per person, per day) for drinking
• Water for washing and cooking
• A primus or gas barbeque to cook on
• A can opener
• Check and replace food and water every twelve months.

Along with your Emergency Kit, you should prepare an Emergency Plan:

During an earthquake many of us would experience panic, part of which might be panicking about what to do. Detailed below is the New Zealand government’s ShakeOut instructions for what to do during an earthquake; Drop, Cover and Hold.
• DROP down on your hands and knees. This position protects you from falling but allows you to still move if necessary.
• COVER your head and neck (and your entire body if possible) under a sturdy table or desk (if it is no more than a few steps away from you). If there is no shelter nearby, get down near an interior wall (or next to low-lying furniture that won’t fall on you), and cover your head and neck with your arms and hands.
• HOLD on to your shelter (or your position to protect your head and neck) until the shaking stops. Be prepared to move with your shelter if the shaking shifts it around.

Listed below are some steps to consider for after an earthquake has occurred.
• Listen to your local radio stations, as emergency management officials will be broadcasting the most appropriate advice for your community and situation.
• Expect to feel aftershocks.
• Check yourself for injuries and get first aid if necessary. Help others if you can.
• Be aware that electricity supply could be cut, and fire alarms and sprinkler systems can go off in buildings during an earthquake even if there is no fire. Check for, and extinguish, small fires.
• If you are in a damaged building, try to get outside and find a safe, open place. Use the stairs, not the elevators.
• Watch out for fallen power lines or broken gas lines, and stay out of damaged areas.
• Only use the phone for short essential calls to keep the lines clear for emergency calls.
• If you smell gas or hear a blowing or hissing noise, open a window, get everyone out quickly and turn off the gas if you can. If you see sparks, broken wires or evidence of electrical system damage, turn off the electricity at the main fuse box if it is safe to do so.
• Keep your animals under your direct control as they can become disorientated. Take measures to protect your animals from hazards, and to protect other people from your animals.
• If your property is damaged, take notes and photographs for insurance purposes. If you rent your property, contact your landlord and your contents insurance company as soon as possible.

In the event of an earthquake being prepared is something you would be eternally grateful for, while not being prepared could put you and your family in an even more difficult situation. Be prepared and make you sure you and your family have your emergency plan and kit sorted this September in time for the October ShakeOut.

Written by Brooke Hattie

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Our Trip to Kidz Kingdom at Rainbow’s End

Our Lighthouse-exclusive event at Rainbow’s End on July the 24th ran smoothly and successfully! We booked out the whole of Kidz Kingdom for our lighthouse families to attend free of charge, and what a fun day it was!


Our staff arrived early to ensure everything was perfect for our families that were soon to be arriving. We set up a temporary first aid and emergency station in case any of trips or falls and a face-painting station so the children could have whatever they pleased painted upon on their cheeks.


When the clock struck 10:00am the doors to Rainbow’s end opened for our lighthouse families. At 10:01am the atmosphere was buzzing. We had a total of 1500 people share the day with us, so it was a great turn out. The Kidz Kingdom is for aimed at those aged 0-8 so every baby and child had a ride they could enjoy. Among the favorites was the carousal, the airplane ride, the bicycle themed ride, the fun train, the baby set amusement world and the gaming facilities.

The laughter of little ones was abundant as they experienced all the fun rides Kidz Kingdom had to offer. The parents enjoyed themselves to, as it brought back childhood memories of their own. All the enjoyment even attracted an interview from TV 33 which was a lovely suprise! The wonderful memories created at Kidz Kingdom will not be forgotten, even at the end of the many hours spent at Rainbow’s End the children were reluctant to leave – no one wanted the day to end however not to worry, lighthouse will have another event just as exciting to attend soon.


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Lighthouse Newsletter July-August 2015

Hello to our wonderful Lighthouse Families! We hope you find yourselves healthy and happy even though we are now facing the chillier months!

Our July and August newsletter is packed full of interesting and exciting news! From how to ensure the kids are keeping warm to Matariki celebration month and there are lots of family friendly activities and events to be attended! At lighthouse we have been focusing on the importance of road safety so we held a few seminars on how to be safe around roads which some of you may have attended. July and August also see the transition from transport to our new curriculum animals!

Just click the link below to open our newsletter, happy reading everyone!

Newsletter July-August


Lighthouse Exclusive: Trip to Rainbow’s End

Although it is colder and the rain showers are becoming more frequent, winter doesn’t have to stop the fun! Lighthouse is planning a variety of colourful activities for our families to enjoy this winter and one of which is a trip to Rainbow’s End!

We have exclusively hired the whole of Kidz Kindgdom just for our Lighthouse families! The Kidz Kingdom is a part of Rainbows End specifically designed for children aged 0-8. It is a family favorite due to it’s fabulous selection of rides, some of which include the carousel; a small maze; a mini roller-coaster; a cute train; and a ‘baby set’ amusement world.

This exciting day will take place on July 24 2015, and we can’t wait to see you all there!

This family friendly occasion has been created so that you and your children can enjoy a fun and exhilarating experience together despite the chilly weather.

If you are interested in joining us for this fun-filled day, please call us on 0800 55 11 33 to reserve your place.

Phone: 0800551133
Facebook: lighthouseathome


Educator Anél – Bucklands Beach

My name is Anél. I am married with two young children; a boy aged seven and a three year old little girl. I have been a home based educator for 2 and a half years, during which time I have built up extensive experience, including with children who have special needs requirements. I love working with and caring for children and being a part of their journey of learning and reaching new milestones. I have a structured learning environment where I provide age and ability appropriate activities on a daily basis. We attend Mainly Music, community playgroups, parks and the library on a weekly basis. I am well equipped with learning resources so that I am able to build good foundations from the beginning.






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Having trouble getting your children to eat healthily?

Sometimes getting your child to eat their fruit and vegetables can be a struggle to say the least. However we think we have come across a magical way to encourage the consumption of every green grape in the bowl – Food Art!

Although it may not be practical for every day, it’s easier than it looks I promise! Your child will appreciate the creativity too as their imaginations can run wild while they nibble upon all sorts of nutrient rich foods! Try it out to see how their gorgeous little faces light up as you serve them a snack which has them wondering how the big hungry caterpillar has found its way to the dining table!

We’ve gathered some inspiration below so you can try out these health-promoting snacks in your home!

Tag us in your creations on Facebook to let us know how it goes!




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Educator – Amy

My name is Amy. I am from Vietnam and have lived in New Zealand for five years now, two of which have been in the wonderful suburb of Pukekohe. We are very happy and settled here and I am now mum to a lovely 15 month old baby girl. I love playing an instrumental role in children’s development and learning, seeing them play and develop together, learning from each other along the way.
I love to take the children to different groups every morning so that they have a chance to interact with others. At home, I also plan arts and crafts, water play or other exciting and stimulating activities for the children. My top priority in every situation is always the children’s safety and wellbeing.

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White Striped Stickers to Save Lives

As an early childhood education service, we care deeply about the wellbeing and safety of all the families and children in our Lighthouse family. So we also acknowledge the importance of children learning how to be safe around roads.

On Saturday 23rd May, we welcomed caregivers, parents and their children to our Auckland office where we held two seminars on road safety. Unfortunately the weather didn’t hold up so we moved the seminar inside the office where we created ‘road scenes’. We had a pedestrian crossing which was white striped stickers stuck to the carpet, colourful cardboard signs which mimicked road signs such as traffic lights and stops signs. We used our man-made scenes to create a fun environment for learning some very serious road safety rules. Singing familiar nursery rhyme tunes and replacing the lyrics with relevance to road safety was another way we taught the children road safety rules.

We explained how red means stop, orange means go but very slow, and that green means go! We also made sure they understood to hold their caregivers hand while crossing the road and to cross at the traffic lights or pedestrian crossings. We then put it into practice on our pretend roads. Each caregiver and child got to practice crossing the road and reacting to the signs we made.

The day was a great success and we are just pleased to be a part of teaching our Lighthouse children to be safe around roads. It truly is so important and all it took was some white striped stickers on the carpet, cardboard signs, some singing, and enthusiasm!

Thank you so much to everyone who attended we hope you and your little ones learnt a lot while having fun!


Road Safety Seminar

On Saturday 23rd of May 2015, Lighthouse will be holding a seminar for caregivers and infants on the importance of road safety and how to ensure it.

A couple of weeks ago, a toddler ran out onto a main road after attending a playgroup in the community. The grandmother raced to catch the child as he darted out onto the road. Unfortunately both the child and grandmother were hit by a car. Grandmother ended up in intensive care at Auckland hospital and the child was rushed to PICU at Starship hospital. Fortunately they are very lucky to have survived however the severity of their injuries will take time to heal.

As a childcare education agency we feel it is very important for children and caregivers to know how to be safe around roads and we would be devastated for this to happen to anyone else, hence our free seminar.

The seminar will educate the children and caregivers on the New Zealand road rules and how to be safe.

Lighthouse caregivers and children should dress warmly as the seminar may involve outdoor activity. Lighthouse will provide some light snacks for the children but please do bring your own lunch for yourself and child.

Seminar Time: Saturday (23/5/2015) 10:00 AM

Location: Unit B1, No. 34 Triton Drive, Rosedale, Auckland.

Registration Phone: 0800551133