Let me tell you a little more about what I'll be doing come the 7th September. I'm going to be looking after two girls aged 2 and 4, from a bilingual family - the mother is from New Zealand and the father is from France. Great for me as I get to talk to the girls in English but in general the family talk French so I'll get plenty of opportunities to speak French while the parents will be on hand to help me with the transition from English to French.
My niece recently turned one and for her first birthday party my sister gave out party bags with old-fashioned style gifts in it, my mum got a book of hand shadows, and I got a cats cradle string/game thing. I used to love doing cats cradle when I was younger and I thought this would be a good thing to take with me to show the girls. I've also been practising hand shadows - there's some brilliant ones, things like Mother Hubbard and a jester.
A witch's broom!
These got me thinking about other things I could take to entertain the girls so I've been looking at my favourite childhood books and games. Some of my favourites were the Angelina Ballerina books, which I guess everyone's heard of, and the Katie Morag books. I don't know if these were as popular but my sisters and I loved them. They were about a little Scottish girl who lived on an island in the Hebrides with her aunt and uncle. I think the Katie Morag stories probably is a little bit responsible for my love of Scotland, with it's wild stormy pictures and exciting adventures! You can read all about it here:
Any suggestions about how to keep young children entertained would be gratefully received, although if Team America is anything to go by, all French children do is go around singing 'Freres Jacques' all the time so I won't need to do much else...