Christmas at Hotel Jen, Brisbane

We believe Christmas is all about family and friends and enjoying time with your loved ones.  So why not make a date with all your family and friends and head to Hotel Jen in Brisbane for a great night out.

Hotel Jen provides a relaxing and enjoyable dining experience for young and old.

Visit the Nest Restaurant with its Asian fusion cuisine which has gained international attention for its depth of flavour, innovative chefs and open-minded approach to combining new and traditional ingredients. At Nest Restaurant and Bar, you’ll find an à la carte menu to suit any craving.

Dinning has never been more fun, Hotel Jen provides a Kids Goodie Bags to keep those younger dinners entertained for hours while you can settle down and enjoy a great meal.

The restaurant is open daily for a breakfast buffet from 6.30am to 10.30am. À la carte lunches and dinners are served from Monday to Friday from 12noon to 9.30pm and on Saturday from 2pm to 9.30pm

nest restaurant






Kids Goodie Bags

Thank you to the following businesses who have come on board to support us and our Kids Goodie Bags


Porters Plainland -1Porters Plainland, 66 Laidley Road, Plainland QLD 4341  Whether you’re catching up with friends over a cappuccino on the shady deck, or planning a big party, Porters Plainland Hotel remains the Warrego Highway’s fresh, reliable dining choice


sofitel brisbane centralSofitel Brisbane Central, 249 Turbot Street, Brisbane QLD 4000  The Sofitel Brisbane Central offers you a great range of dinning experiences for the whole family.


nest restaurantHotel Jen, 159 Roma Street, Brisbane QLD 4000  Visit the Nest Restaurant with its Asian fusion cuisine which has gained international attention for its depth of flavour, innovative chefs and open-minded approach to combining new and traditional ingredients.


Ultiqa rothbury hotelULTIQA Rothbury Hotel, 301 Ann Street, Brisbane QLD 4000. Located directly in the centre of Brisbane, ULTIQA Rothbury Hotel is the perfect sophisticated accommodation for your holiday needs.

crown plazaCrown Plaza Gold Coast, 2809 Cold Coast Highway, Surfers Paradise QLD 4217


noosa caravan parkNoosa Caravan Park, 143 Moorindil Street, Tewantin QLD 4565




Ultiqa shearwater resortULTIQA Shearwater Resort Caloundra, Cnr Devene Ave & Ormond Tce, Kings Beach Caloundra QLD 4451


Ultiqa freshwater point resort

ULTIQA Freshwater Point Resort, 33 T.E Peters Drive, Broadbeach Gold Coast QLD 4218


Ultiqa Air on BroadbeachULTIQA Air on Broadbeach, 159 Old Burleigh Road, Broadbeach QLD 4217


big4 toowoombaBig4 Toowoomba Garden City Holiday Park, 34A Eiser Street, Toowoomba QLD 4350

Brookwater Golf & Country Club, 1 Tournament Drive, Brookwater QLD 4300



South Australia

the-ed-logoThe Edinburgh Hotel and Cellars, 7 High Street, Mitcham SA 5062



stamfordStamford Grand Adelaide, Moseley Square, Glenelg SA 5045



stamfordStamford Plaza Adelaide, 150 North Terrace, Adelaide SA 5000



majestic hotel roof gardenMajestic Roof Garden Hotel, 55 Frome Street, Adelaide SA 5000


pike and joycePike & Joyce Winery, 730 Mawson Road, Lenswood SA 5340
Western Australia

holiday InnHoliday Inn Perth City Centre, 778 – 778 Hay Street, Perth WA 6000

my place bar and restaurant

My Place Bar and Restaurant, 70 Pier Street, Perth WA 6000





duxtonDuxton Hotel, 1 St Georges Terrace, Perth WA 6000



rydgesEsplanade Hotel Fremantle, Corner Marine Terrace and Essex Street, Fremantle WA 6160





Changing the way you think about Marker Pens

Chameleon Art Products is not just “another marker company”.  They pride themselves on developing real innovation that enhances the end users ability to maximize their creativity in all aspects of their artwork.

Their markers bring colour control and simplicity to your art.  Creating stunning 3D effects, smooth transitions, highlighting, shading, gradations and blending, ALL WITH ONE PEN.

To purchase your set simply head to and order in your 5-pen pack or 22-Pen Set.

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Investigating How Children Develop a Sense of Self

Have you ever logged onto Facebook and been fascinated with the discrepancy between someone you know and his/her Facebook account? Perhaps you’ve even felt this about your own account. Social Media creates a world where people can create an inflated version of their self – where they can present themselves in an unrealistically positive way, and audit out any negative information, photos or feedback. If used in this way, Social Media can create a world of unreality. This is known as ‘Facebook Image Crafting’. Unfortunately, an image that is bigger and better than reality may not make people happier. Although it may make us feel better right away, it risks disappointment and frustration due to the difference between expectation and reality.

This phenomenon is not exclusive to Social Media. Focusing on the self has become increasingly entrenched in Western Culture. Social Media puts it on display by allowing people post a pin-up board of ‘selfies’ or to exchange their deepest (or most shallow) thoughts for ‘likes’. Reality television brings us the dream of overnight stardom. But it is not always so extreme. How many feel the warm glow of acknowledgement when we hear the mantra of the self-esteem movement, ‘I am special’?

We have not always had the same access to being able to promote ourselves and interests as we are able to do today, and they have not always been part of our culture. These cultural changes have unsurprisingly linked to the ‘Me’ Generation, the baby boomers. This fixation on self-esteem enhancement has developed what some researchers are calling ‘the Culture of Narcissism’, and these changes have actually been measured. Research by Jean Twenge has found that in the 1950s, 10% of American university students endorsed the statement, “I am an important person” in research surveys. In the 1980’s this number had grown to 80% of university students endorsing the statement. The problem with this is that not everyone can be special and important. Because if everyone was special, then special would not be special anymore, it would be ordinary. It is a contradiction of the word. But is there actually anything wrong with people thinking that they are special, even if they are not? Won’t this just make us dream big, work hard, be absurdly ambitious and eventually achieve our goals, realise the dream… and be special?

In some ways, it is hard to answer this question. It may indeed be that thinking we are special will mean that we are reluctant to settle for less, and to strive to achieve our best. This has not been tested in research, however. What has been researched that may help us answer this question in part is a personality trait, called ‘narcissism.’ Narcissism can be defined as a grandiose sense of self, and as such is partly defined by feelings of ‘specialness’. One of the central characteristics of a narcissistic personality is entitlement (i.e., the feeling or belief that you deserve something). A great source of unhappiness for people with a strong sense of entitlement is unmet expectations. If you have grown up believing you are exceptional, there may be something extremely disconcerting about the idea of having to have to start at the bottom and work your way up, or perhaps to work hard at all. But any successful person will tell you that great careers take years of blood, sweat and tears to build. People who have high levels of narcissistic personality traits feel entitled to respect and reward that is not consistent with their effort and ability. Paul Harvey has published important research designed to help employers deal with this entitlement in the workplace.

Another possible consequence of a highly narcissistic personality is that it is linked to an unstable sense of self (i.e., one’s personal regard or value is subject to fluctuate depending on feedback from ones environment). If so, these people could become reliant on the approval of others. If their view of themselves is not in line with reality, then it cannot be internally regulated. On the one hand, this need for admiration and validation may motivate the individual to seek out new opportunities (e.g., in order to self-enhance), but on the other hand, it may also make them extremely sensitive to criticism or any threat to their inflated self-image. This may lead to further problems because the external world will not often validate an inflated perception.

This brings us to the most problematic part about having a narcissistic personality. Narcissism and inflated high self-esteem has been found over and over again to be highly correlated with hostility and aggression (Baumeister, Bushman & Campbell). It can contribute to difficulties in the workplace, and within close relationships – families, partners and children. While the extreme confidence of a person with a narcissistic personality helps them make positive first impressions, it may also risk a lack of empathy and interest in the lives of their significant others.

It is the purpose of my research to try and understand the nature of narcissism and identify factors that contribute to its development. I also want to know how narcissism functions for children – that is, it could be that having very high confidence during childhood works differently than in adults because children are confronted with failure and struggle during this time of development as they work hard to master new skills and tasks. My hope is that looking at these factors in children will help us understand how narcissism, very high confidence, and entitlement work during childhood, and, eventually, provide information to parents that will empower them to make choices that will help to ensure a happy and fulfilling life for their children.

To take part in the survey please head to this link

Kind Regards and thank you

Kate Derry – PhD Student – University of Western Australia

Nutrition: Giving our kids the best possible chance

Over the last few years I have become very interested in how what we put into our bodies and how we treat it affects the way our brains function and our general health. This has created an obvious link to looking at the best possible contexts for the learning brain and particularly for maximising the specific intervention provided by our therapists and teachers for children with primary language disorder. Joe and Terry Graedon (The People’s Pharmacy, talk about the advice our grandmothers gave us and how this wisdom is now being backed up by science.

The first thing our grandmothers (or even our Mum’s) used to say was “Eat your vegetables.” There is irrefutable amounts of research to indicated that to get the most from our diet, including physical health and brain functioning, we need to include a variety (think of lots of different colours) of non-starchy vegetables (eg leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, capsicum, onions etc). Some research indicates that 10 servings a day for an average adult is not an unreasonable expectation. Frozen vegetables can be just as nutritionally dense, but vegetables in a can or processed in some other way should be avoided, usually because of the added chemicals and sugar.

The next thing grandma used to say was “Get a good night’s sleep”. The average adult requires 7-8 hours of sleep per night and children require more, even teenagers. Sleep is the time when our brains have time to consolidate all the new information they have absorbed during the day, making new neural connections and interconnections.

Grandma also used to say “Go out and play” and “A little bit of hard work never hurt anybody”. What she was saying was your body needs to move – walking, swimming, playing, lifting. Quality exercise is not only good for physical health, but also essential for mental health and brain functioning. Grandma might have also said, “Visit your grandma”. It has become increasingly evident in the literature that social connection and support are elemental to maintaining our good health.

It has been interesting spending some time in the classrooms again over the past month or so, and being reminded of the specific challenges a lot of our students face through their language disability when it comes to eating, sleep, exercise and social skills. These factors may impact significantly on their current and future progress in learning, as well as physical, emotional and mental health. While staff provide the best intervention and care possible within the classroom context, the factors which set up students for greater or lesser success remain within the domain of the family.

This article was provided by Let’s Talk Development Hub.  To find out more contact Let’s Talk Direct.

SLI and Numeracy: The challenges faced by students

Difficulties faced by individuals within the area of literacy; reading, comprehension, writing and spelling, are well recognised by teachers and in most cases are prioritised for intervention. Numeracy is often perceived as a strength for students with SLI and as such it receives less attention. Specific skills such as small number labelling or using a procedure to solve written equations may be learnt at an age appropriate level, however, as language involvement increases and concepts shift from the concrete to the abstract often individuals with SLI will be less successful than their same age peers in all areas of numeracy (Cowan & Donlan, 2005).

It is not difficult to see why an individual with SLI will require additional support to reach their potential within numeracy. Put aside the curriculum content and look into the expectations for communicating and thinking mathematically that are as vital part as any when considering one becoming ‘competent’ within the learning area of mathematics, 2014).

Within the proficiency strands ACARA outlines statements for understanding, fluency, problem solving and reasoning. Of these areas much time is required to consolidate understanding and fluency of core mathematical strands, however, the skills included within problem solving; ‘ability to make choices, interpret, formulate, model and investigate problem situations, and communicate effectively’, and reasoning; ‘analysing, proving, evaluating, explaining, inferring, justifying, generalising and comparing and contrasting ’ are in my observations often not included within individual units of work (ACARA)

Curriculum coverage was considered as one of the potential key factors for differing results achieved by primary aged individuals within a study published in 2005. Although logically it seems there would be a link between the amount of learning content delivered and the ability to be more successful across a range of numeracy skills, in this study “there was no relation between curriculum coverage and maths skills in the SLI group.” (Cowan & Donlan, 2005). What was identified as contributing factors towards numeracy success was working memory and counting skills (Cowan & Donlan, 2005).

In a later study published in 2011 other factors were explored to explain the difficulties encountered by pre-school aged children. These included precursor skills for numeracy including naming speed (automaticity),phonologicalawarenessand grammar. Of these and other skills assessed the study did uncover that “children with SLI perform worse on verbal early numeracy tasks, but do not differ on nonverbal tasks”(Kleemans, 2011) It also highlighted that “there seems to be a crucial role of naming speed in predicting verbal early numeracy skills in children with SLI” (Kleemans, 2011)

There is no disputing that an individual with SLI will encounter challenges and will require additional support for mathematics throughout schooling. This support does not only need to be in the form of individualised intervention and strategies for identified needs. Due to the complex needs faced by individuals with SLI adjustments must also be made at the classroom and assessment level to ensure they are provided with an equal academic playing field.

This article was provided by Let’s Talk Development Hub and if you require any further information please contact them direct.

Understanding Me: Helping Teenagers gain an understanding of their disability

Most teenagers struggle with their self-image growing up and teens with learning disabilities have even more to worry about. They often know they have more learning difficulty than others and as a result, feelings of embarrassment, failure, anxiety and low self-esteem are all too common. Unfortunately, many teens and parents avoid talking about disabilities and what it means for the individual and their future.

As teenagers are growing up, they are increasingly aware of the widening difference between themselves and their peers, and may perceive themselves as being “slow” or “stupid”. This lack of self-awareness occurs alongside all of the other changes of adolescence. Many teenagers with communication disorders find it difficult to understand and come to terms with their diagnosis. By enabling students to understand what their own particular diagnosis means, it empowers them so that they can explain their difficulties to others.

In line with best practice for young people transitioning to adulthood and planning post-school options, transition-focused planning should begin no later than age 14. It is recommended that students remain central to the planning process and participate in decision-making and evaluation. Best practice recommends social skills training, independent living skills training and learning strategies skills training.

‘Understanding Me’ by Stewart and Hampshire (2007) is a resource that was developed in response to the needs of teenagers with communication disorders and can be a useful tool for guiding discussions about disabilities. It was introduced as part of a program in the Senior School at Glenleighden by Cathy Nicholson (CHI.L.D AssociationSLP) who came across the ‘Understanding Me Program’ while working with teenagers in the UK.

The following topics are recommended when discussing your teen’s disability:

  1. What does intelligence mean? What are the different types of intelligence?
  2. What is my strength profile like? What am I good at? What am I not so good at?
  3. Terminology – What is a Speech Pathologist/ Occupational Therapist/ Physiotherapist and how can they help me?
  4. What is a diagnosis? What does my diagnosis mean?
  5. Can I explain my diagnosis to others in my own words?

This article was provided by Let’s Talk Development Hub and if you require any further information please contact them direct.

Ways to Improve Memory Skills

Memory is a foundational skill necessary for all learning. Students with poor memory skills may find it difficult to recall instructions, to recall letters/ numbers/ words as well as impacting on academic learning in areas such as reading, spelling and maths.

Important factors for learning new tasks and concepts successfully:

  • Frequency of learning: need repeated exposure
  • Intensity of learning: need to practice intensely
  • Cross training: teach different types of skills to encourage different types of memory being used (short term memory, working memory, long term memory)
  • Adaptivity: differentiate learning for each individual student’s needs (e.g. visual/ auditory/kinaestheticandtactile learners)

Explicit teaching of memory strategies:

  • Repetition (saying the instruction/ information over and over)
  • Visualisation (visualising the instruction/information)
  • Grouping the information together
  • Recalling information sequentially
  • Write down the instruction/ information
  • Retell instructions/ information to another person

Regular participation in memory games:

  • Group games (e.g. ‘Simon says…’, ‘I went to the beach and I bought ….’)
  • iPad and internet memory games
  • Watch You Tube clips and afterwards ask questions to encourage recall of information
  • Memory trays (revealing and hiding objects)
  • Card Memory Games

Ensure tasks are achievable by gradually increasing the amount of information to recall as the students ability to recall improves. Frequent repetition of memory strategies is recommended in a variety of contexts (e.g. memory games, academic work, visual reminders) to assist in transferring memory skills across settings. Memory games can be easily incorporated into the classroom and everyday life. Making them fun and engaging for students will not only enhance their memory skills but their overall learning.

Written by Tanya Currie (Occupational Therapist) from Let’s Talk Development Hub

Funtastic Learning

Funtastic Learning is all about helping your children learn through play and what a great way to support your child’s needs than to visit our store which offers a great range of learning toys.

Funtastic Learning was started by Lee, a stay at home mum who is always looking for new and exciting ways to help children thrive to be the best they can be.   Lee has children of her own and understand the importance of allowing children to learn about creative play.

Kids have a great imagination and why not let them explore with the different items around them.

Learning 1[1]

The House features visually engaging finishes, modern fittings and easy open access to all rooms. Engaging in role play provides opportunities for children to build positive relationships with peers and adults through social play and explore the world around them.

It is also a great tool to help engage children and further their communication skills.

Learning 2[1]The multi-sensory focus will entice innovation in design, while encouraging resilience. Designing and building have never been easier than with the Carpenters Collection. Featuring 42 individual pieces of construction this fantastic set will inspire and delight both boys and girls alike. Containing nuts, bolts and connectors this set will provide children with the basis for designing and building the most wonderful of creations


Learning 3[1]

Match the numbers on the clock face and learn how to tell time. This is a 12 piece puzzle measuring 29cm in diameter. Children can discuss, sequences events and use everyday language to describe the duration of activities. Great hand-eye co-ordination skill with the development of number and time concepts.



Come and visit our store to find more of our great range of products at


Summer may be over but still keep your kids safe around water

Waterwise Swim School in Perth provide you and your child with the resources and important facts on how to stay safe around and in the water.

Kids Alive advocates “Do the 5” but this does not always keep children safe.

  1. We can’t fence rivers and oceans
  2. Gates and fences don’t always meet safety standards or get left open
  3. Swimming programs can take years to get a child safe, they are designed to keep children dependent on a parent, teacher or floating aid until children are 3 or 4 years old
  4. Parents and carers get distracted, children are crafty at getting away unnoticed
  5. Survival swimming skills saves lives!


Below is a comparison between normal swimming lessons and survival swim

Traditional Swimming Lessons Survival Swimming Program
Group lessons, 8 – 10 mums & bubs, or 4 pre-schoolers with a teacher One-on-one lessons just the instructor and the child – the child gets 100% of the instructor’s attention
30 minute lessons, fun, games, swimming 10 minute lessons of swimming and floating
1 lesson a week 3 to 5 lessons a week
Many terms, sometimes even years to get safe Safe within 20 to 30 lessons, 4 -6 weeks
Teachers get general training, 30 – 40 hours Instructor gets specialised training 160+ hours
$13.50 – $18 per lesson

Example : Cameron, $980 for 7 terms from 3 months to 2 years, not yet safe

$30 per lesson

$600 -$900, skilled for life

What Waterwise Swim School, Perth teach:

  • Children can float unaided within 5 to 10 lessons
  • Children can rotate onto their backs and float unaided within 10 to 20 lessons
  • Final testing is done in nappy, summer clothes, winter clothes – 5 lessons
  • Most children will need 20 – 30 lessons from start to finish
    • On-going maintenance weekly so children can continue to improve their swimming ability, or at least monthly to adapt their skills to their growing bodies

Who Waterwise Swim School, Perth teach:

  • Infants from crawling age (before then they can’t get to water on their own and don’t have much arm and leg co-ordination, still have neo-natal reflexes which are uncontrolled “jerky” movements) and older children to about 6 years
  • Children with disabilities such as autism, dwarfism, Williams Syndrome, developmental delays, mental or physical disabilities. Regular, focussed exercise in the water also improves their physical and mental abilities such as language skills, and improves strength and co-ordination
  • Children can come across from other programs and get skilled for life too, or come to the program with no experience of the water at all

So don’t wait until it is too late, contact Stacey at Waterwise Swim School, Perth now to book in for your child so that they can be confident in the water.