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MINI PROFESSORS – Clued in with kids review

MINI PROFESSORS – Clued in with kids review

Mini Professors Warrington – Preschool Science classes in Stockton Heath, Culcheth, Altrincham, and Knutsford.

You can take the Science teacher out of the school but you can’t take the school out of the teacher. Fortunately, Mini Professors Warrington gave us the opportunity to get stuck back in and perform a little Chemistry.

 

Mini Professors Warrington is one of Britain’s best loved Pre-school Science classes aimed at instilling a love of learning for two to five year olds. Brought to you by the same group that delivers the award winning baby sensory and toddler sense sessions, the idea behind Mini Professors is simple but effective; give every child the opportunity to learn and develop new skills, and allow children to ask questions about how the world around them works.  Mini Professors have a number of weekly timetabled classes but also run holiday specials, such as the one we were fortunate enough to attend in mid-August 2019.

When we arrived, we were warmly greeted by our ‘teacher’ Amy and children were invited to collect a laboratory coat and name badge. As a Science teacher seeing my little one looking so cute and adorable in a teeny toddler sized lab coat my heart just melted. She had an official looking name badge and Amy referred to all the children as professors whenever she addressed them. To make sure that the children were always involved, Amy had a range of Scientific pre-school books to hand whilst the rest of the ‘class’ arrived. Twenty plus photos later, (yes they all were that cute) we decide to join the circle and wait for the session to begin.

 

Amy introduced the purpose of todays session and told us we would be learning all about volcanoes today. The topic changes each week, and with 80 different topics, there are always new and exciting concepts for our little students to discover. The idea is that Science is all around us so examples of classes include dinosaurs, weird science, animal communication, bubbles and the rainforest, to name only a few. We sang our welcome song which was nice and straight forward with the words on a power point slide for newbies like us who don’t attend a regular term time class. Amy then used a range of visual aids to help to demonstrate what a volcano was and used a key scientific terminology but in a way to help make it more accessible for children. Obviously there was a limit to how much our two year old understood compared to the older pre-schoolers due to their deeper understanding of language, but even the Clued in kid got some basic ideas, getting very excited over some pumice which she tried to use on her feet and started shouting ‘volcano, ‘hot’ and ‘fire’.

Classes are designed to enable children to learn through play and this is achieved by the children carrying out some simple but effective hands on experiments in a safe environment. Children carry out two activities each session and today we all gathered around for the first activity. Amy did a quick demonstration, calling on the professors to take it in turns to help her rather than just having them observe. She then paired them up to repeat the same steps but this time working together in small groups, helping them learn about taking turns.

We then gathered around in a circle for our story which was linked to the sessions theme, with children invited to move in for a better look. Amy made sure that she read the story enthusiastically, turning the book so that every child was involved. We then gathered back around the trays for our solo experiment….. making a volcano! Amy gave each child the materials and introduced the word ‘apparatus’, describing the use of some key pieces such as a filter funnel. She gave very clear instruction on exactly what to do, issuing the materials in a controlled manner so that children followed the steps correctly and again, took turns to watch each others volcano go off. The kids loved showing off their volcano to the other professors and so this is a great way of helping to develop childrens social skills. At each point Amy made it clear why we were following each step, and encouraged the older children to ask and answer questions relating to either their investigation, or to how volcanos work in general. Our toddler got great enjoyment out of this and was able to perform each step with a little support from mum.

To encourage safe practices around chemicals from an early age, children are encouraged to wash their hands after each activity. We then finished the session with our goodbye song and were given the option to continue to read the scientific books if we didn’t want to leave straight away.

 

Throughout the sessions parents and carers are able to join in the fun, again asking key questions which helps the children get even more out of their experience. One boy wanted another go to set off a volcano at the end of the session and since the activities are easy to pick up once parents are shown, mum convinced him that it was ok and that she now knew what to do so they could continue the fun at home.

 

Sessions typically last for 40 minutes and cost £6.50 each. Sibling discount is available so both can join a class for £10. Classes are a great idea for all but especially for those children not attending nursery as it helps to give them an early taste as to what a classroom will be like when they start school. This is because classes gives our little tikes a sense of the structure they will experience, especially if you block book them onto a term as the routine is the same each week, only the concepts and experiments change.

Science fun at home with these popular sets.

Thank you Amy for giving our toddler one of her first tastes of Science in the real world. We love that they really do get into character as they love dressing up just like you to perform their experiments. We also like that you don’t shy away from using key scientific terminology. Yes it can be challenging to some but its surprising what the kids pick up, especially with the visual aids e.g. videos, diagrams and experiments to support your teaching. Its also fantastic that you offer a class that parents/carers who work Monday to Friday can attend as we do miss out on so much during the week.

Additional information:

*Mini Professors currently runs classes in Stockton Heath, Culcheth, Altrincham, and Knutsford. To book onto a class, please visit https://www.miniprofessors.com/Warrington/home.

*Parties are also available which are suitable for children aged 3 to 7 years old. The three themes are crazy chemicals, marvellous magic and awesome air.

*Mini Professors Warrington can run in nurseries or preschools catering from one off to weekly sessions.

*Mini Professors Warrington has sessions suitable for reception and KS1 that have been tailor made to meet the national curriculum.

*The fact that there are 80 sessions equates to a two year programme of study suitable for two to five year olds.

*Featured image provided by Mini Professors for use by Clued in with kids. 

*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 took another family with us and we are confident that this represents a factual and unbiased review. 

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