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Parents often share many of the same challenges when raising their child. First Five Years gives parents the expert advice, insights, support and tools they need to make the most of the first years of their child’s life.

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Mother working and looking after two children

Mental Load: Behind The Superwoman Myth

Who knows when the family is low on toilet paper and does the birthday and Christmas shopping in your house? Who’s juggling child care or knows when the parent teacher interviews are scheduled? These are all examples of mental load, and in most households, it’s usually handled by one person. Is that person you?

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Snapshot of Australian Families

Emotions

Parent’s emotions are quite a contrast. The two words parents felt best described family life over the previous three months were happy 49% (↓ from 54%) and stressed 39% (↑ from 36%).

Meals

31.8% of families only eat breakfast together on weekends. However 11% (↓ from 12%) of families never eat breakfast together.

Family Time

48% (↓ from 53%) of parents believe they spend less time with their children than their parents spent with them.

Expenses

39% (↓ from 40%) of parents have struggled to meet essential expenses like food, mortgage/rent, utility bills, child care or important medical care over the past 12 months.

Mother on the floor looking at baby
It’s not that people who are more introverted are anti-social, but rather that they have a preference for spending alone time, preferring quiet to loud noise, having close relationships or one-on-one time rather than interacting in large group situations.
Associate Professor Simon Boag

Navigating parenting as an introvert

Parenting is inherently messy and noisy. With a young family, how do introvert parents, who crave alone, quiet time to recharge their batteries away from an over-stimulating environment, find the opportunity for important and valuable alone time?

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Tired mother with baby

Sleep problems aren’t just for babies

Poor sleep can affect a person’s quality of life, so what does this mean for parents who are regularly up at night? Dr Bei Bei, a senior lecturer and clinical psychologist looks at the consequences of poor sleep for parents and how to get better sleep.

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A grandmother and her toddler grandson sit on the floor of the living room and lean against the sofa for story time

When, how and why to read to your child

Parents already know the fun and joy that stories bring, but regular reading brings multiple benefits. Research shows that children whose parents or carers read to them every day at two to three years old had on average higher Year 3 reading ability.

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Mother holds newborn

Hypnobirthing: Benefits of a calm birth

Every woman’s birth experience is different. For many it is a positive and empowering event, for others it may raise some normal anxiety and for some the descriptions of the pain and possible complications of childbirth contribute to feelings of dread.

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Busy mother with baby

Managing children and work from home

Busy parents are doing the best they can but many will agree that working from home with children can be tough. Dr Jade Sheen from Deakin University's School of Psychology says there are ways for parents to get the children to work 'with them".

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New mother holding baby

Managing body image after having a baby

Once you’ve managed the mental and physical hurdle of giving birth, many feel a rush to get back the body we once had, while also being grateful for everything it has done for our newborn. How do we assist new mothers to accept their post birth shape?

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Young boy climbing

Risky play: Why it benefits children

Often our instincts will scream at us to get involved and stop our children from engaging in risky behaviours. But with the benefits of risky play to our child’s development being well documented, it is useful to understand appropriate risk.

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Skin Sensations

Talk to your child about how things feel on his/her skin: “Your shirt is soft.” “The wind is cold.” “The ice cube is slippery.” See how he/she reacts and continue the conversation: “You like the warm water in your bath!”

When you talk back and forth with your child about how things feel on his/her skin, you are introducing him/her to new words and feelings. This helps make new connections, which are the foundation for learning to use these words himself/herself in the future.

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Vroom uses the science of early learning to help your child thrive with bite-sized activities that support brain growth.