Tips to help children cope with this busy time of year
The Sector > Provider > General News > Finessing the festive frenzy: Harmony Early Learning Journey shares tips

Finessing the festive frenzy: Harmony Early Learning Journey shares tips

by Freya Lucas

December 13, 2023

The lead up to the end of the year can be a tricky time for early childhood educators, children and families. Tempers are short, excitement is high, and energy is running low. 


To support families and other community members to navigate the festive period early childhood education and care (ECEC) provider Harmony Early Learning Journey has shared effective strategies designed to address the challenges of overstimulation and help children manage stress and stay centred.


“The festive season is an exciting and busy time, but overstimulation can become a challenge for parents as young children are often out of routine, meeting new people, eating different foods and they can become overwhelmed,” said Harmony Operations and Curriculum Shannon Franks.


One of the best ways for educators and parents to mitigate this is to create quiet spaces where children can retreat if they feel overstimulated or overwhelmed.


“These spaces should be equipped with calming activities such as books, soft pillows or calming

music and children should be encouraged to use these spaces when they need a break,” she said. 


“Another strategy is to practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques which can include breathing exercises, guided imagery or simple meditation.”


Introducing soothing scents (in a way which is mindful of the allergies and sensitivities of both staff and children) such as lavender and camomile by utilising essential oils or scented objects can also help.


“These aromas can have a soothing effect and create a familiar and comfortable environment for children,” Ms Franks explained.


“During such a busy time of year, educators and parents should also encourage physical activity and incorporate physical activities into the holiday routine.”


“This will help children release excess energy and can include activities like short walks, gentle

exercise or playtime in a controlled environment.”


Finally, she suggested listening to calming music or enjoying sedate activities such as drawing or colouring, which can offer “a peaceful break” at such a busy time. 


Harmony Early Learning Journey currently operates 15 early learning centres across South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales with a further six sites scheduled to be added to the group in 2024. 


For further information, please visit the website


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