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“Inspiring play together” - A review of Baby College North Cheshire (Widnes and Lymm)

“Inspiring play together” – A review of Baby College North Cheshire (Widnes and Lymm)

Baby College North Cheshire

Age range: 0 to 3 years old.

Term time baby and toddler group.

https://www.babycollege.co.uk/north-cheshire

Contact: sarah@babycollege.co.uk

With the wet weather now setting in, Nanny was on the look out for a new class. Fortunately, we found Baby College North Cheshire who are offering a brand new and exciting baby and toddler development class with a difference. Nanny was lucky enough to be invited along to check it out for Clued in with kids members.  

The theme each week changes, the week we attended was centered around animals such as fish. The CIWK loved the colour. Image credit belongs to Baby College North Cheshire 

Baby College North Cheshire is run by Sarah who fell in love with the ethos of the Baby College programme, and so brought the franchise in September 2019. With a keen interest in child development herself, she wishes to empower parents/carers, teaching them key tools to help their little ones thrive. Classes are designed for babies up to 3 years, last 45 minutes and there’s a new developmental topic featuring each week, carefully designed by child development experts, health professionals and academics.  Sessions are differentiated to match the needs of each age. Baby sessions focus on increasing parent/carers confidence and understanding of their baby’s growing needs. Toddler sessions introduce additional learning themes with a focus of engaging and learning about the world around them, developing language, body awareness and listening skills through music and rhyme. Junior classes are even more active and there’s a focus on developing cognitive and motor skills, as well as building on confidence, independence and emotional understanding. Themes are drawn from real life experiences allowing children’s imaginative juices to flow and showcase their creativity.

The Clued In kid attended on a rainy Thursday in September at The Hayloft, Widnes. Here, classes run every Thursday (term time), with classes also available in Lymm each Friday. Attendees were warmly welcomed by Sarah, and made to feel right at home by the other adults and children present.

 

Image credit belongs to Baby College North Cheshire. The CIWK loved the colourful hoops. 

Children learn best through play and so during our session, our little tikes played a range of fun games, teaching parents/carers to help build a child’s confidence, help them articulate what they were doing, and helping children understand social interactions such as turn taking. Sarah’s knowledge regarding the use of gentle parenting was really informative when it came to sharing ideas on how to praise children for displaying positive behaviours, and how to help guide young imaginations to facilitate play, e.g. giving them appropriate choices to take play to the next level.

Games are varied with a key theme to tie them all together. This week the theme was all about fish and other animals so our fishermen started off using their fishing rod to collect colourful fish and place them in plastic nets as requested. Of course, the Clued In kid decided SHE didn’t want to conform and put the fish in the nets. Instead she tried to pull the magnets off! Cue Nanny’s horror but Sarah was fantastic and between the pair of them, they helped guide our child to make a positive choice, remaining calm and using some of the gentle parenting techniques we have just discussed. Other activities included (but were not limited to) learning about different types of fish by singing fun filled songs, playing with the musical instruments, learning about colour by placing coloured animals in the corresponding colourful hoops. Bubbles which were particularly fun to run after and catch, and of course the session finished with a colourful parachute which children absolutely adored as they sang songs and used the handles to wave the parachute up and down like waves on the ocean. The Clued in kid really enjoyed this part of the session. Children were praised for responding so well when it came to tidying the activities away.

Parachute play for the youngest little pupils on the baby session. Image credit belongs to Baby College North Cheshire 

As mentioned, throughout play, children are also taught how to interact socially and there will be times when children do need to be quiet. We all know adults struggle with this, let alone children so Sarah facilitated this by turning it all into a game. Children were asked to stay really quiet for one minute. The time was gradually built up and of course children were praised afterwards. You may be reading this and think exactly as we would ‘my child won’t sit and be quiet’. Well ours did surprisingly well (she doesn’t normally… trust us) but she engaged with the ‘fun’ of the game and wanted to imitate the other children. If a child made a noise Sarah used gentle parenting techniques to try to refocus the child and there was no pressure for the children to conform if this wasn’t for them.

Image taken by Baby College from the baby session 

One of Nanny’s main priorities when looking at a new class is how well the class provider has chosen the venue as this says a lot about the organiser. First impressions make or break it for Nanny who was pleased to report back that the room was exceptionally clean and tidy with a gate at the top of the stairs to deter escapees.  The only thing to note was that there was no disabled access to this room. Nanny also looks at facilities that makes travelling with children simpler and so was pleased that the Hayloft has good transport links and plenty of parking. She also likes the fact that numbers are capped so that the space doesn’t become too busy, giving little feet the freedom to move about freely and the children receive more one to one attention from Sarah.

Image credit belongs to Baby College North Cheshire – The CIWK having a fantastic time dancing and clapping away. 

The Clued in kid was ecstatic when she went outside as she loves the facilities helped to extend her day out with Nanny. There are a range of animals, a giant wooden play structure, ride on toys and other facilities which the children are free to use after their session with Baby College. There is also a seasonal maize maze. There are plenty of outdoor seats for parents/carers to supervise play whilst having a catch up (or even a minute to themselves). Adults can also enjoy socialising with their new grown up friends over lunch if they choose as the venue serves breakfasts, light snacks and main meals. There is also an extensive range or home made sweet treats, ice creams and hot drinks. Food is reasonably priced and toddler portions sizes are generous. Staff are also very friendly.

Outside play facilities at the Hayloft (taken by Clued in with kids on a previous visit)

Finally, Baby College North Cheshire has painted rocks that will be spread out around the Hayloft pumpkin fields and they will have offer codes on them. Find them and you could win anything from a cream tea for two, up to a free term with Baby College!

 

So nurture your child’s love for learning and book on to a trial with Baby College North Cheshire. At the moment, classes are PAYG but the option to book a term is on its way. Classes cost £7.50 and the booking process was really straight forward. Its all done online via the Baby College website. Enjoy!

The perfect place to get together with your new friends from the Baby College course – Interior of the Hayloft taken by Clued in with kids on a previous visit 

Current timetable (October 2019)

Thursday: The Hayloft, Sandy Lane, Widnes, WA3 3XP

Friday: Lymm Youth and Community Centre, Bridgewater St, Lymm WA13 0AB

Visit https://www.babycollege.co.uk/north-cheshire for the range of times.

 

Want to see what the Hayloft itself has to offer after class? Visit https://www.cluedinwithkids.co.uk/farmyard-antics-at-the-hayloft-and-sandy-lane-farm-a-clued-in-with-kids-review/

Another weeks theme was all about autumn. Our undergraduates had a fantastic time adding colourful leaves to the trees. Image credit belongs to Baby College North Cheshire. 

Additional terms and conditions:

*This review is based on our own experiences and are our own opinions.

 *We therefore can not guarantee that your experience will be the same as ours and this article should be treated as a review and not a recommendation.

*All information is correct to the best of our knowledge. If there are any inaccuracies, please contact admin@cluedinwithkids.co.uk so that this can be amended.

*We are confident that this represents a factual and unbiased review. 

Social media links:

CHESHIRE
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cluedinwithkids.Cheshire
NORTH WALES
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cluedinwithkids.NorthWales.Events

WIRRAL, LIVERPOOL AND BEYOND
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cluedinwithkids.WirralandMerseyside.Events

 

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