16/10/2013 at 14:24
So I've decided to volunteer to jointly run the "new style" baby/toddler in the village and wondered what happens in your toddler groupos. What activities do your children like doing? It's for 2 hours on a wednesday morning. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
16/10/2013 at 14:51
I help out a toddler group, even though Luke is at school full time!
ours is run in a very traditional village hall. one room with a kitchen with a serving hatch
we have a non mobile baby area with padded mats and a circle of chairs to help keep busy mobile toddlers from stepping on tiny ones.
an area with large foam mats and a small tikes slide
a selction of small ride on toys
car mat with vehicles and biro train set
imagination corner with play kitchen dress up clothes and other small world toys
a craft table and or playdough and or jig saw table
we have signing in sheet and honesty pot for the subs at the serving hatch but you have to tick if you would like a tea or coffee so it's incentive to pay if you want a hot drink
we are open from 9.30, set up from 9.00 as we have to store all the toys away at the end of each session.
free play and crafts until snack time at 10.30
snack served (usually chopped fruit and biscuit or cracker) and adults hot drinks and home bake if we are lucky!
I prep the snacks (take longer than you think!) and we have 2 kettles to be able to send out all the drinks at the same time
wash up (lots)
then free play until story and or singing/music time at 11.15. whilst we all sit on the chairs and mats in the baby area the leaders and volunteers tidy up the main part of hall. We had to do this otherwise it was taking us until 12.00 to tidy up at then end of the session people just left it all to us.
then once the main part of the hall is finished tidy we do hokey cokey whilst the chairs and baby mats are put away.
finish at 11.30am
16/10/2013 at 15:55
That's exactly what I was looking for, thanks Carole. How much is the suggested donation?
It will be in the village hall with a Kitchen, so much the same as yourself
how do arrange story/music time, everyone in a circle I'm presuming?
Hokey Cokey Is a brilliant idea.
Thanks for all the ideas!
16/10/2013 at 16:14
We ask for £1.50 per adult and one child, then 50p for each additional baby/child. if two parents arrive we usually ask for an extra 50p toward their hot drink.
music/story time is done in a circle. we already have chairs set out in a circle for the baby area and some children sit on their parents knee, or on the mats in the middle. to be honest we don't do story very often, only if it's quiet as the group gets very busy so it's easier to do singing and action songs than raise your voice to try and read a story! we have a box of instruments that come out for singing time that are very popular and that usually helps bring people to the circle, if not I just shake them and they come.
Doing the Hokey cokey is a bit of a tradition now. It's a great way to end the session and the mums and children love it. even the mums with the tiny babies join in and we say it's a good work out after eating cake and biscuit with our hot drinks.
our group had it's one year anniversary today so it's all fresh in my mind about we set the group up ;)
16/10/2013 at 18:54
I'm vice chairperson of our Playgroup/parent and toddlers.
We are £3 per family when parents stay, £3.50 if the drop children off and leave.
We have a sign in register and cash box.
Kitchen with a hatch into the main hall. We serve tea, coffee and biscuits through the hatch and its included in the price. We have a seated area the children are not allowed in and this is where the adults have their drinks. At one side is arts and crafts that a member of staff plus normally 1/2 parents sort out and help the children (read stop them eating the glitter) a couple of children's tables with jigsaws, megablocks and similar. On the other side of the hall we have a mixture of toys. Then in the far corner we have mats, couple of baby gyms and bouncers for the younger ones.
We have free play from 9.30 until 11, 10 min tidy up time while snack is served. After snack the last 10 minutes is song time. We finish 11.45.
Snack is generally toast soldiers, fruit, breadsticks, cracks, occasionally yogurt (jelly for dairy free kids). Most weeks we have birthday cake from someone
16/10/2013 at 19:28
Our toddlers is 9.30 til 11.30. £2 then 50p for each additional child
We have tables and chairs around the hall for everyone to sit at then a baby area with bouncers, walkers, playmats etc. A climbing frame and slide (with mats under them), dressing up rail then mats dotted about the hall with different toys such as train sets, happyland. Oh and lots of doll's buggies - these are a favourite with the boys.
Snack is served for the children which you help yourself to - jugs of juice, bowls of fruit, popcorn and crisps normally
The adults get tea and toast
We start tidying up about 11.10 then we put a few mats out and all the children sit on them, we sing happy birthday to the birthday children that week and they get a cake and a present then we have song time with musical instruments
The only thing missing from ours I think is a craft table of some sort which I might suggest as I've just joined the committee
16/10/2013 at 20:34
I'm Vice Chair for my local NCT branch and run their Bumps & Babies group. I suspect that you're probably looking for something a bit more full on as my group is pretty unstructured and relaxed. I have play mats which I put down in a circle with a box of toys in the middle. I make teas, coffees and squash at the start for the mums. I pretty much leave it to them to just chat. A couple of times a month I get someone in to do something more structured, often taster sessions of local baby classes. I've had Jo Jingles, Baby Sensory, Harbeeps etc in, as well as talks on things like weaning or sleep. I don't charge for the group as such, but I do ask for a £1 donation which helps over my hall hire and refershment costs. The group does run at a loss though so we use branch funds from our general fundraising to pay for it. It's a very rewarding thing to do, and I love seeing some of the friendships that the group has fostered. Several mums have told me that my group has been a lifesaver for them in the early days and it's because of that I'm so passionate about running it :)
16/10/2013 at 21:58
I help run a toddler group at my Church hall, which has a kitchen with hatch and a nice outdoor area.
We run from 9.30 - 12, and some of us go straight after the school drop off next door to set up.
We have a baby area with chairs around, and vary the other toys, but we've got a few bigger items like a slide, kitchen and play house that are usually out.
We have a craft table, and usually another table with puzzles or megabloks or books on it.
It's £1 per family, we don't have to pay for the hall so we can keep the price low.
We do hot drinks and toast throughout, the toast is very popular, and sometimes fruit or home bakes as well. It's serve yourself, no one goes there without children (though I suspect some of us will when our youngest ones are at school!) so people take turns to pop in and make a pot of tea / coffee and some toast or wash up. In reality there's a core of a few of us that do that, but people tend to start helping once they only have older children with them and so can help, which is fair enough
We all tidy up at about 11.30 then the children get a drink and a biscuit while someone reads a story, then we do some singing in a circle. We have a 'song bag' with props to initiate songs and do a few favourites every time. We start with 'sleepy bunnies' and the children know when they finish their drink to put it on the kitchen hatch and go lie down for the song, it's very sweet.
We have a sign up sheet for the various jobs - preparing the craft, bringing the refreshments, reading the story, leading the singing, clearing up afterwards, again there's a core that does all that but there's enough of us to stop it being a chore. We have a Chair, who maintains the sign up sheet, liaises with the Church, and e-mails round each week what the activity is, if any help is needed and any other news. I'm treasurer, which means I bring the money box each week, keep a record of what we spend and what we have and refund people who buy things
I also go to another group on a different day that is quite similar, except it has people there purely to run it. They have a rota of people from the Church who do the teas, and the children get drinks from there throughout too, and people who run the craft, the singing and the story. They have lots of space, separate rooms for different activities and so it's a very busy popular group. After singing they do birthdays, the birthday children sit on a chair and get to blow candles out on a 'cake' made from a quality street type tin with candles on top, they get a packet of chocolate buttons and everyone else then gets a button or raisin. That's the most popular bit and we've had to play 'birthday chair' at home for years!
12/11/2013 at 10:43
Really sorry that I've only just got back to this, it's been a little hectic here.
Thanks for all your replies, we're hoping to start running in January. theres some really good ideas here!
12/11/2013 at 13:32
good luck Pocahontas. it's hard work but lots of fun.
Mrs E- I like the idea of hot toast. Do you use real butter or margarine? I must start up a song bag- it's a good idea. we usually sing the same couple of songs each week.
12/11/2013 at 15:47
The ones I go to are pretty similar to what's been mentioned.
They all get the kids to help with the tidying up though which im not sure if that's been mentioned.
I think it's really good as it teaches them that when it's "tidy up time" they stop playing and put everything away. W now does it at home too so she understands to tidy up her bricks etc before we sit down for dinner etc.
Arts and crafts are always very popular but it varies between groups as yo how much they divas it requires more volunteers to be able to help out with the messy stuff.
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