My first Au Pair meeting with Go Au Pair cluster in Bucks County, PA

Please enjoy the guest post My first Au Pair meeting with Co Au Pair cluster in Bucks County, PA by a new Au Pair from South Africa Lisa.

On Sunday, 09.20.2015 we had a meeting with Au Pairs and Host Families from Go Au Pair and my Local Area Representative Polina.
We all went to The Village Renaissance Fair in Newtown PA, the entry fee was only $5 to get into the fair.The Village Renaissance Fair, 2015

We all met up there in different cars and paid to get in once in we were all welcomed by Polina.

She showed us where we can go to dress up for free so we can fit in with the renaissance period and take photo’s with friends.The Village Renaissance Fair

We all danced in a circle with the devil and took some photos of group and did introductions for new au pairs.The Village Renaissance Fair 7

After that, we just had a small group discussion then we were free to walk around fair and do our own thing.

The Village Renaissance Fair5

Things to do, there was a lot there to do, the food smelt amazing so many choices, and there were ice cream trucks etc. There was a parade with knights, queen and kings etc thru the fair to entertain us.The Village Renaissance Fair 10Few girls wanted to learn how to belly dance and got a lesson and did a show for us. It was very lovely too take photo’s with new friends we made for memories of the times we shared and there was props and awesome decor and of cause entertainers willing to pose with us for photos.IMG_20150920_145259

So all in all, it’s a very good fair, especially for families, there are lots to do for children like jumping castles, sword fighting etc. There were also lots of games that you could play to win prizes, but for us we all had a fun time meeting all the new and old faces and making new friends.

Cultural exchange Au Pair meeting

Au Pair’s events are cultural exchange meetings which promote cultural awareness, help gain international experience, strengthen interest in other cultures, history and inspire to learn.

Au pair meeting at Village Renaissance Faire

Come join Chinese Au PairsColombian Au PairsSalvadorian Au Pairs,  Ecuadorian Au PairsAustralian Au PairsSouth African Au PairsMexican Au Pairs, and Au Pairs from other countries at The Village Renaissance Fair, 557 Penns Park Rd, Newtown, PA 18940 on Sunday, September 20, 2015, at 12:00 pm.The Village Renaissance Faire

The Village Renaissance Faire is a recreation of a 12th through 16th century village named Penn’s Park and consists of eight stages and various sets: Merchant Squares, Living History Pavilions, Food Courts, Gaming area, Multi-cultural enclaves, Craft Corners, and Kid’s Kingdom.

Please join the Au Pairs and Host Families from Go Au Pair. This is a special occasion for a celebration of international friendship and meeting new people which leading to new friendships.

Come to see the arts, the town, and the knights.Y Dress up- you can be part of the show.

The Au Pair Bucket List, Share the Fun!

Vanessa, Au Pair from Ecuador, came to the Philadelphia area recently, however, she already created her Bucket List and is ready to explore.

Vanessa likes to travel, explore many places in the USA, experience new things, meet new friends, learn something new, and accomplish the personal goals. There are many things that she would like to achieve during her Au Pair year.Au pair list

I think that creating a bucket list can benefit Au Pairs in several ways- help to stay organized, keep moving, and advance Au Pair life.

Here is Vanessa’s Bucket List.Au pair Equador

Meet most Au Pairs from the Philadelphia cluster
Take a dance class
Volunteer for a cause or for church
Make international lifetime friends
Visit many malls in the United States
Go shopping with friends
Travel by train to the nearby cities and States
Visit zoos
Eat at the different restaurants to sample a variety of food
Share good time with the other Au pairs’ host families
See a comedy or romance móviles with friends
Cook a favorite meal for my friends
Get to know downtown Philadelphia, (Benjamin Franklin Bridge, Kimmel Center, Market Street
Make snowmen in winter
Go rafting
Go Ice skating
Attend a football game or baseball
Learn another language
Go to the mountains
Attend musicals
Go diving
Enjoy cycling the trails
Go camping in a National Park
Go to the libraries
Rock Climbing with friends

Drink a frozen caramelfrozen_caramel_latte

Creating the bucket list can be fun. Sharing your list with others, inviting other Au Pairs to join the activities. revisiting the list over time, and checking off the experiences as you collect them, helps to enjoy your Au Pair life more.

Thank you very much for sharing your bucket list, Vanessa.  Please, share your bucket list and share the fun with other Au Pairs!

Au Pair – a partner in parenting!

According to the number of children living in single-parent homes has nearly doubled since 1960 and the number of single-parent families is Bucks Conty 1

Single parents need reliable and cost-effective childcare. By providing childcare at the same cost regardless of the number of children in the household, the au pair program is the perfect option.

An Au Pair becomes an important member and valued addition to the family- a responsible partner in parenting. Having the Au Pair gives the children stability, support, and a life long friend.2014

The Au Pair also gives parent some free time away from the kids. When a single parent is away, the children are in the hands of a trusted person in their own home and with someone they are comfortable with.

The Au Pair follows house rules and parent’s childcare preferences. They provide a partnership in parenting in day-to-day life.

Welcoming Lisa, an Au pair from South Africa.

Please join me in welcoming the second year Au Pair from S. Africa Lisa. Lisa is 27, and will live in Philadelphia. Marce, Au Pair from Mexico kindly offered to be a buddy again. Thank you, Marce.Au Pair from S. Africa 1

As you may know, we interview the new Au Pairs. I am thrilled to share Lisa’s interview with you.

What are your hobbies and interests? Love socializing with friends, bonfires, braai aka BBQ, beach, outdoors, baking and cooking and crafts

What was the best event/happening during last month? I really enjoyed the summer holidays with the children took them to the beach or the cove to swim or we would hike. Other than that went to 6 Flags with my other au pair friend and had social gatherings with friends at their houses.Au Pair from S. Africa

What three adjectives best describe you? Loyal, Outgoing, big heart.

If you had one wish what would it be? To see every state in USA that my grandpa had seen when he travelled here as he always had the best stories when he was alive

What place would you like to visit? San Diego, New Orleans, Florida- Grampa recommended. I would love to see Atlanta and bit of the South maybe road trip.Au Pair from S. Africa 3

What is your favorite way to spend a Saturday? Have a coffee, breakfast, plan my day with friends either beach or outing, go out for lunch or dinner then relax and unwind when back at home maybe with a movie or listening to music.

Do you believe everything happens for a reason? I do indeed, I believe I’m here to do what I love and to experience what my grandpa did as he always wanted me to see USA so I’m doing this for him to in a way as he always wanted to go back one last time.Au Pairs from S. Africa

What was the best complement you have ever received? That I have the biggest heart out and very caring to others, as I always look out for others people’s needs before my own. What are two things that you consider yourself to be very good at? Baking, cooking and very good and meeting people very outgoing, make friends easily. 11992648_414331738758769_69715683_n

That is a very impressive interview, Lisa, and we’re looking forward to getting to know you in person!

Welcome Lisa, we all hope meeting you at our next meeting on Sunday, September 20, 2015, at 12:00 pm at The Village Renaissance Fair.

Educational trips for Au Pairs from Philadelphia and Bucks County

Cultural Hi-Ways offers many educational trips for the Au Pairs who live in Philadelphia, Bucks County and close NJ area. The trips/classes hold on weekends as well and Au Pairs can earn 45 class hours. Three classroom sessions (Sundays) at Peirce College, Philadelphia  plus a tour to the destination studied allow Au Pairs to earn a certificate of completion for 45 hours or 4.5 CEU’s.aupairs

This Fall Learning Across America Educational Courses started already with the trip to Niagara Falls. This year Cultural Hi-Ways offers a new trip to Boston. The first class will begin at Peirce College on Sunday, October 4 and also on Sunday, October 11 and October 25. The tour date is November 14-15, 2015
aupair from Go Au Pair

The very interesting trip to Washington, DC will be in October, 2015. Class Dates are on Sunday, October 18, November 1 and November 8, 2015 and the weekend tour to Washington, DC will be on November 21-22, 2015.

Many Au Pairs enjoyed the trips and earned the credits. Ophelia, Au Pair from China, wrote about the trip/ classes with Cultural Hi-Ways.Go Au Pair_Au_Pair

Kiah,  Au Pair from Australia, took this trip recently and shared with others,”Our first stop was the Air Force Memorial. We spent 20 minutes there before being dropped at the National Mall and being given 3 hours of free time. I chose to see the Washington Monument as well as the Holocaust Museum, both free attractions. This trip was absolutely once in a lifetime and I could not recommend it enough!” Read more about the trip to Washington, DC from Kiah post.GoAuPair_Kiah5
Don’t wait until the last minute to register if you want to travel and fulfill your educational component. More information about PA Au Pairs Educational Courses you can find here.

Weekend Au Pairs classes

According the Department of State requirement, standard Au Pairs must complete 6 credit hours and EduCare Au Pairs must complete 12 credits.  6 credit hours equate to 72 classroom hours. Au Pairs must take classes in the classroom, not online.

You can also choose the weekend classes now. The Department of State is now accepting weekend courses as long as they are at accredited institutions. Here are a few options.


One weekend course is worth 3 credits and costs from $300 to $ 350, depending on if you are communiting there every day (Friday afternoon through Sunday) or staying there over night.

Courses offered at CW Post:

  • American Culture
    Take any two of the following courses and receive a certificate in American Culture.

    • Women, Gender and Power
    • The Role of Government  in American Society
    • Cultural Dynamics
    • Exploring the American States
    • Music that Made America
    • Fashion through the Decades
    • Celebration of Holidays
    • Organized Sports in America
    • Growing up in America

    Business Marketing
    Take any two of the following courses and receive a certificate in Business Marketing.

    • Enhancing your Digital Lifestyle
    • Marketing and Social Media
    • Business in America {Coming soon}

    English Study
    Take any two of the following courses and receive a certificate in English Study.

    • TOEFL/English Preparation
    • Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama
    • Critical Reading and Expository Writing

    Child Development
    Take the following courses and receive a certificate in Child Development.

    • Physical, Cognitive & Psychosocial Development
    • An In-depth Look at Diverse Learners


Silver Bay Au Pair Courses, LLC

Each weekend  Silver Bay offers different programs. Au pairs decide on the evening of their arrival at the Silver Bay Campus, which sessions they will attend during the weekend. The fee is $ 275 for one weekend and 3 credits.

Class offered:
  • History of Albany: America’s Oldest Chartered City
  • Personal Financial Responsibility and Basic Business Principles
  • Are Leaders Born or Made? A study of leaders and leadership through time
  • American Holidays: Comparison of Cultural Traditions and Customs
  • Media Literacy in Film
  • Digital Photography: Basic Techniques and Creative Ideas
  • Fostering Developmental Exercises for Adolescents
  • Write On! Proper Writing Skills and Technique
  • Breaking Down Social Barriers for Children through Active Enrichment
  • American Slang
  • Nutrition and Exercise: How to Maintain Physical and Mental Fitness
  • Fostering Community Involvement
  • American Politics
  • What You Do Now Impacts Your Future Career
  • Lake George
  • American Social Life
  • Fort Ticonderoga
  • Problem Solving
  • Deconstructing Personalities and Understanding Networking Styles
  • What Should I Eat?
  • Eating Healthy in a Busy World
  • Living Life Stress-Free
  • The Development of Social Media Networks
  • Spontaneous Melodrama: American Culture Through Dramatics and Theatre
  • Traveling the USA
  • How Twitter Toppled a Government

Au Pairs need to complete 6 or 12 credits in order to complete the au pair program successfully. If you plan to stay a 2nd year you need to finish your credits by the end of your 10th month.

Choose your class today!

Summer is almost over and it is the time to think about your classes at an American University. All of the Au Pairs have to complete six semester hours (12 for EduCare), or the equivalent. If you haven’t found your class yet, choose your class today!
Au Pair class.

Au Pairs must take classes in the classroom, not online. In order to enroll you may need to take the Placement Test to be eligible for college courses.

The colleges listed here are the most popular and affordable choices in the Philadelphia area, mostly for ESL classes.

Bucks County Community College 

Newtown, PA (215) 968-8000

Upper County Campus, Perkasie, PA (215) 258-7700

Bristol Center/Lower Bucks Campus, Bristol, PA (215) 781-3939

Day, Evening, Weekend

Credit, Non-credit ,  Continuing Education Department offers extensive and affordable classes.

Delaware County Community College

Media, PA (610) 359-5050 , (610) 359-5333 for non-credit courses,

Day, Evening, Weekend

Credit, Non-credit

Montgomery County Community College

Blue Bell, PA ,(215) 641-6300

West Campus located in Pottstown, PA

Day, Evening, Weekend

Credit, Non-credit

Harcum College

Bryn Mawr, PA (610) 526-6116

Day , Credit, Non-credit

International House

3701 Chesnutt St, PHILADELPHIA, PA 19104,: 215-387-5125,

Day, Evening, Weekend, Non-credit, affordable

Princeton University

4 Mercer street Princeton NJ08542, (609) 258-0202 – E-mail:

Day, Evening, Weekend, Non-credit

Continuing Education, Non-credit classes,  Adult Education  and Lifelong Learning classes are the most affordable options for Au Pairs.

According the Department of State requirement, host families have to reimburse tuition costs and costs of related materials  up to $500  and $1000 for EduCare. Au Pairs responsible for all payments for tuition, fees, books and materials that exceed $500 or $1000.

Please, plan ahead, speak with your host family and don’t wait until the last minute to register for your class.

Welcome Max , Au Pair from China

Please join me in welcoming new Au Pair from China Max. Max or Yuhan Zhao is 21, she arrived in Philadelphia one week ago. Max is taking care of three small kids.
Au pair from ChinaMax already has buddy Venisha, Au Pair from South Africa. She is looking forward to meeting Venisha next weekend. Max said that her favorite way to spend her Saturday is spending time with my friends and go somewhere she wants to go.”If I have one wish, Max said, I want to go to Hollywood because I like the Hollywood movies.” Max has many hobbies -she likes traveling, chatting with friends and eating delicious food. She said that she is good in singing and making friends. Max doesn’t believe that everything happens for a reason.
Max from CXhina
Welcome Max, we are looking forward to meeting you at our next meeting on Sunday, September 20, 2015, at 12:00 pm at The Village Renaissance Fair.
Everyone at Go Au Pair hopes that you will have an awesome year and we’re looking forward to getting to know you even more!

Friends Become our Chosen Family

Friends are a family you choose for yourself. ~Author Unknown
All current Au Pairs from the Philadelphia, Bucks County and NJ cluster-have Au Pair buddies. Many Au Pairs are looking forward to becoming a buddy, opening their heart and sharing their experience with new Au Pairs. Au Pairs buddies help a new Au Pair to adjust to a new life in the US quickly. Buddies have special connections and often become more than friends. The buddy program  creates a sense of unity, belonging to a cluster family and a circle of friends. frienship
Becoming a buddy to a new Au Pair is a great way to make new friends.  It  also makes an Au Pair buddy feel good because a new friend really appreciates her support and help.
Cosima, the Au Pair from Germany, said “I know that it’s important to have a helping hand in the beginning. Everything is new to you and you feel kind of lost at some point. And then it’s great to have a person who’s there for you. I’m happy to be that person! And on top it’s an awesome way to gain new friends!”thank you buddy
Being a buddy is a great project that we created and hopefully it will be something that we will keep doing with the cluster in the future.
Au Pair friends
Thank you to all new buddies, Marcela- Au Pair from Mexico, Lorena -Au Pair from Colombia, Venisha -Au Pair from S. Africa,  Aline – Au Pair from Brazil, Amber – Au Pair from Australia, Joyce – Au Pair from China.

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