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Hereford & Worcester


Education Focus School open day special

Good Sleep Habits How to get a full night’s sleep

What’s On October half-term

Issue 53 September/October 2018

Editor’s Letter Dear Readers Now that autumn is upon us, think for a moment about the fantastic summer we have enjoyed this year. I am (just about) old enough to remember the seemingly never-ending Summer of 1976, a summer of picnics, swimming in lakes, and warm light evenings. I hope that my youngsters will treasure their memories of the Summer of 2018 in the same way; and remember the endless sunny days, warm seas, and beautiful evenings. Of course, light nights mean late nights and that can cause problems with sleep routines and in this issue we examine the challenges of developing good sleep habits for the whole family.

Local Author Launches Children’s Book Pickles’ Purrfect Plan, a brightlycoloured picture book with rhyme, featuring relatable characters including a witch, a wizard and a cheeky cat. Suitable for 3-7 year olds. Written by local writer Carolyn Young and beautifully illustrated by Jo Blakely throughout. With lots of animals for children to name and a spider on each page for them to find, this is a story about helping others, of working as a team and of friendship. Published on 15 October. Available from Amazon, online bookshops as well as all good high street bookshops.

We also have an extensive education feature looking at the best local schools. And, as always, we have an extensive What’s On section. Enjoy the autumn! Diane Clifford. Editor 01684 770566 Families Hereford & Worcester is part of Families Print Ltd, a franchise company. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under licence. Families is a registered trademark of LCMB Ltd, Remenham House, Regatta Place, Marlow Road, Bourne End, Bucks SL8 5TD. The contents of Families Hereford & Worcester are fully protected by copyright and none of the editorial or photographic matter may be reproduced in any form without prior consent of Families Hereford & Worcester. Every care is taken in the preparation of this magazine, but the franchise company, Families Print Ltd and Lifecycle Marketing cannot be held responsible for the claims of advertisers nor for the accuracy of the contents, or any consequence thereof..


Advertise with us and reach over 44,000 parents in the region. Next issue November/December “Christmas” issue Booking deadline is Friday 5 October.

Cotswold Wildlife Park's 2018 Photography Competition encouraged young people to connect with nature through photography and included a specific category for entrants aged 16 and under. Reuben Eves won first place in this category with his photograph entitled ‘The Ancient One’. Visitors were invited to photograph any creature, great or small, from the collection of over one thousand mammals, birds, reptiles and invertebrates from all over the world.

One Festival Two Weekends For the first time ever England’s biggest festival of heritage and culture will take place across two weekends in 2018. Heritage Open Days, 6 to 9 and 13 to 16 September, is an annual celebration of England's architecture and culture that allows visitors free access to historical landmarks that are either not usually open to the public, or would normally charge an entrance fee. Co-ordinated nationally by the National Trust with support from the People’s Postcode Lottery it brings together thousands of organisations across England.

Waterworks Museum, Hereford: Make a splash at this unique children’s Heritage Water Park! Housed in an authentic Victorian waterworks, over thirty engines and pumps will be working on the day, as well hands-on devices for children to use across the museum. 9 September, 12pm - 4pm. 2

Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

With a theme of ‘Extraordinary Women,’ this year’s festival will offer visitors more opportunities to discover the secret history of their towns, villages and countryside. There are hundreds of activities for kids, including dressing up, woodland walks, and railway rides. Best of all, every single event is FREE! For up to date information on events taking place near you visit, To advertise call: 01684 770566


Scrap Fruit Juice From Breakfast Children who drink fruit juice with breakfast are more likely to become overweight or obese. A study, led by the Medical University of Vienna, revealed that children who had orange or apple juice with their breakfast were 50% more likely to be overweight, while those who drank water saw their obesity risk fall by 40%. It also found that skipping breakfast is linked to weight gain as it makes children more likely to snack during the day. The study, published at the European Congress on Obesity in Vienna, questioned 652 children aged 13 on their breakfast habits and, while most types of food had no clear relationship with weight, those who drank fruit juice more than three times a week were 50 per cent more likely to be overweight or obese. More info at

BOX OFFICE 01527 65203

Home from Home with Chilly Powder

Study Reveals Two Thirds Of Children Not Safe In Car Seats Parents are being advised to check their children's car seats after a new study found that two in three children aren't safe while travelling. The What Car? study, created in conjunction with specialist organisation Child Seat Safety found that 59% of children are sitting in car seats that have been incorrectly fitted or are inappropriate for them. The survey on 3,000 seats, with and without children in them, held at random seat-checking events throughout the UK, revealed that 36% were incorrectly fitted in the car, while 33% of those that had children in them weren’t suitable. Many of the mistakes were said to be "simple and easy to avoid," and included tightening seat belts, incorrect head restraints or harnesses being in the wrong position. In the UK, children are legally required to remain in a car seat until they are either 12 years old or at least 135 cm tall, whichever comes first. More info at

Do you prefer winter or summer in the Alps‌ or both? Francesca, Paul and their three children live in Morzine in France all year round and have a good knowledge of Alpine traditions and the Morzine people. Having adapted their chalet holiday style over the years to suit the tastes of their regular guests, they offer the perfect ski and summer holidays for families, couples or mixed groups in relaxing luxury, with fantastic food and outstanding facilities, with unrivalled in-house childcare facilities. For many returning guests Chilly Powder is considered a real home from home. www. For more about Chilly Powder chalets for summer and winter visit

To advertise call: 01684 770566 or email:



Ed’s Reading Room

Hi kids, parents, grandparents, teachers – and book lovers everywhere! I’m Ed and here is my Autumn book selection for you to enjoy. Have fun reading! www.


The Twitches Bake A Cake by Hayley Scott (Usborne £5.99)

How To Make A Doorway Dare Kids love trick-or-treating - but sometimes it rains, or the neighbours pretend to be out. Here’s a crafty trick or treat game from our friends at Wonderbly to make at home.

ED SAYS: ‘‘Stevie has recently moved from the city to the country and she adores the teacup house and its little family of toy rabbits, the Twitches, that Nanny Blue gave her. She is delighted to be helping her mum ice a big cake for their moving-in party. But when the Twitch children, Fig and Silver, see the amazing glittery icing on the cake, they decide to make a surprise cake for their parents. And so begins an exciting adventure – but will they be able to make their cake without being seen by the humans?”

You will need: Horace And Harriet: The Sports Spectacular 4 shoeboxes (no lids) a utility knife by Clare Elsom (OUP £5.99) ED SAYS: “Horace and Harriet a metal ruler are great friends although they are an unlikely pair – Harriet is paint seven and three-quarters and Horace is a statue who is almost 388 years old and who comes to life! Harriet spends quite a lot brushes of time stopping Horace getting into trouble and when the a black marker pen Sports Spectacular comes to town she has certainly got her 2 pieces of dark cloth work cut out for her. Horace does get into the spirit of the 2 large buttons, or bottletops games but will he be able to cope with Coach Whipston. cobwebs (preferably fake) or feathers And his new notoriety as champion-in-waiting?” tricks and treats

How to make your Doorway Step 1 FOR AGES 7 YEARS PLUS Take two of the shoeboxes and draw a doorshaped rectangle on each. Using the knife and Spy Toys: Undercover by Mark Powers ruler, cut along three sides of the door, leaving (Bloomsbury £5.99) ED SAYS: “The Spy Toys – Dan, Arabella it on its hinges. and Flax – are back to solve their latest mystery. An entire Step 2 chocolate factory has vanished into thin air. The main Grab some brushes and paint the boxes. Try suspect who used to work as a scientist at the factory is boldly-contrasting colours for the door and brickwork. Leave to dry. now teaching in a local school so the intrepid trio need to Step 3 go undercover in the school to investigate. When Flax is Get a thick marker pen and add some details: introduced to a secret society by one of the schoolboys, letterbox, house number For a doorknob, you he soon realises all is not what it initially seemed. Will his can sew on a button or glue on a bottle cap. own secret organisation be able to accomplish its mission?” Step 4 Turn your boxes around. Glue or staple a piece To The Edge Of The World by Julia Green of cloth inside each, then cut a slit down the (OUP £6.99) ED SAYS: “Jamie loves his idyllic life on a remote centre of the cloth. Put these boxes to one side. island off the coast of Scotland. He adores running down to Step 5 the beach early in the morning but he doesn’t ever venture Now take your other two boxes. Decorate the into the sea, fearing the water with its surging tides. Mara insides with fake cobwebs, feathers or other touchy-feely things. One should feel lovely, the however is fearless. They have very different personalities but other should feel icky! These will form the as they get to know each other a strong bond develops backs (or hallways) to your doors. between them, with Mara’s adorable dog Django everStep 6 present. But how will they manage on a wild and dangerous Tape the hallway boxes to the doorway boxes, adventure at sea? Will Jamie ever become as brave and bold so reaching through the door will lead to the as Mara? sensory items. Step 7 “Allow yourself to be swept away by this exciting and Find something lovely and something not so intriguing story.” lovely. (Plastic spider/strawberry lolly, lychee eyeball/pound coin etc.) Hide the treat in one doorway and the trick in the other. Step 8 Ed’s Reading Room is part of, a DTI award-winning website. It was created by Maggie Humphreys, a teacher of more than 25 years, and Les Snowdon, who together Dim the lights and invite your little trick-orare authors of several books on fitness walking and healthy eating. treaters to choose their fate. Ratatatat… You can contact Maggie on 01753 730019 or by email at See Maggie’s latest ebooks at


Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

To advertise call: 01684 770566


Applications From Aspiring Astronauts Welcome... Or future Prime Ministers, architects, physicists. What makes Dodderhill Independent Girls School different? From the very beginning, our smallest girls in Reception are encouraged to aim high and to have no limits to their aspirations. The newly refurbished Pre Prep department (Reception to Year 4) has large, bright rooms leading directly on to an outdoor learning and play area. Every week girls go to our onsite Forest School where they climb trees, build shelters and learn how to start campfires. Girls can explore, ask questions and develop a love of learning, both in and out of the classroom. Our curriculum adapts to meet the needs of the different age groups with girls learning French from Reception onwards and Spanish beginning in Year 5. All the girls have access to our purpose built sport and music facilities, as well as modern art and textiles studios. There is an exceptional range of co-curricular opportunities for girls to enjoy, including iMotion Animation, Wellbeing Club, Duke of Edinburgh Award, Environmental Club and many more.

The youngest girls are nurtured in small classes, in a school where traditional values and manners co-exist with the best of modern technology. Here at Dodderhill we celebrate every girl as an individual and nurture her talents whatever they may be. Our excellent GCSE results are achieved by giving the girls confidence in their own ability from the earliest age. When you join Dodderhill, you become part of our family and a member of a school where everyone will know your name. Girls enjoy coming to school each day and leave at age 16 with firm, lifelong friends. If you are looking for a school that promotes a ‘can do’ attitude and encourages girls to grow in confidence and resilience, please book a visit to experience the Dodderhill difference! You will discover a school like no other in the area and experience a community where a love of learning is part of our culture. We have open events on Friday 28 September 2 - 5pm, or Saturday 29 September 10am - 12noon. Alternatively, we welcome visits during the normal school week.

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Co-educational • 3 – 13 years • Day, Weekly, Flexi and Full Boarding

October Open Days Friday 12th October, 14.00 – 16.30 • Saturday 13th October, 09.30 – 12.30 /TheDownsMalvern


Mrs Katherine Cox, Registrar • 01684 544108 • •

A Happy, Caring And Stimulating Place To Be “I would recommend The Downs Malvern because of its caring and nurturing environment, enthusiasm of staff and above all else, because it is a happy place to be.” – Current parent

Uniquely, The Downs Malvern has the oldest, privately-owned miniature railway in the world – The Downs Light Railway. This provides a unique opportunity for the children to build, operate and maintain a working steam railway.

The Downs Malvern is well-known for being a happy and supportive school. It is our aim to ensure that all of our children are excited about coming to school and that they feel safe and cared for while they are with us. The children are taught through a wide-ranging academic curriculum, including outdoors, where they are able to make use of the 55-acres of our beautiful grounds. The extra-curricular activities on offer give the children the chance to find something that they are passionate about and, along with the superb facilities, they have every opportunity to excel and succeed. We offer a unique ‘Hobbies and Activities’ programme, where the children can try their hand at activities such as cookery, yoga, ‘STEM’, origami, film-making, as well as a range of sports. It is our deepest wish that the children feel encouraged to do their best in all areas, whether that be academically, physically, spiritually, socially or creatively, so that they can achieve beyond their greatest expectations. 6

Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

The children are encouraged to develop into kind, resilient and supportive members of the school and its wider community. It is frequently commented on that the children at The Downs Malvern are always seen with joyful expressions. The best way to experience The Downs Malvern is to come and visit us at our Open Days on 12 and 13 October or you are welcome on a private visit any weekday throughout the year.

To advertise call: 01684 770566


RGS Worcester

The RGS Journey offers an outstanding education for boys and girls aged from 2 to 18. Whether a child begins their journey at RGS The Grange, RGS Springfield or RGS Worcester, they will receive the very best preparation for life. RGS The Grange is a Prep School full of opportunities. Set in 50 acres with its own Astroturf and forest school, the School combines superb facilities with a caring and supportive education designed to build confidence for each child. RGS Springfield is the small school with a big heart. Tucked away in beautiful Britannia Square, the School provides a city centre campus with a country school feel and a nurturing, supportive environment.

RGS Worcester Senior School begins in Year Seven and pupils join from the Prep Schools and over 40 primary schools, taking advantage of excellent transport links. With extremely strong GCSE and A Level results, the School provides academic stretch and support so that each pupil achieves their potential. The Award-winning Careers provision ensures they are well prepared for the world beyond school.

With a strong reputation for pastoral care, the Schools support pupils throughout all stages of their personal development, making sure that they settle in quickly and enjoy the exceptional opportunities available, both in and outside the classroom. Co-curricular provision at all three schools is breath-taking with over 20 different sports and 80 different clubs and activities. The Performing Arts are strong and a £2.8 million building project to create a new Performing Arts Centre is expected to be completed by October. Scholarships and Bursaries are available. As one of the six oldest schools in the world, RGS Worcester combines the very best of independent school tradition with a forward-thinking modern education, designed to equip pupils for their futures. An education at RGS Worcester is inspiring, unique and exceptional. Please do come and see us at our Open Mornings or at a time convenient to you. We guarantee you a warm welcome and our pupils would be delighted to show you their school. “RGS Worcester does what it does with a vision and panache that not many can match”. The Good Schools Guide

Open Mornings RGS Springfield 29 September 2018 9.00am - 12.30pm

RGS Worcester 6 October 2018 9.00am - 12.30pm

RGS The Grange 13 October 2018 9.00am - 12.30pm

To advertise call: 01684 770566 or email:



More Than Just Child’s Play... Choosing an Early Years Child Care setting for your child can be a daunting process. With so many different types of provision on offer – from Nurseries to Preschools or even school providers, how do you start to decide which is the most appropriate setting for your little one? Eckington Under Fives Pre-School and Forest School, tucked away in a beautiful rural setting on the edge of Eckington village, near Pershore, is a pre-school which firmly believes that every child is gifted in his or her own way. Our primary aim is to engage and nurture the whole child. Here, children grow emotionally, physically and intellectually, with carefully planned environments that promote creative thinking, co-operation and independence. Exploration and adventure A weekly Forest School (and Forest Tots sessions for our very young learners and their families) is key to our ethos of promoting exploration and adventure in the natural world. Cooking on camp fires, rope swings, den building and mud digging fill our sessions. “Natural treasures” are regularly gathered, by children and adults - conkers, logs, feathers, pine cones, rocks and used both in Pre-school and Forest School in a range of activities from counting to role play, art to construction. As we provide Early Years education for children from the day after their 2nd birthday right up to school age, our skilled Early Years practitioners take every opportunity to promote children's physical development. Alongside a fantastic range of daily outdoor play sessions - from mud kitchens to sand and water play - the physical environment of our setting is carefully designed to maximise muscle development. Young children need to strengthen their core muscles before they can develop the arm and hand strength needed later for writing. Our experienced staff pay attention to every detail – seating is designed to enhance core muscle strength and play zones are created at different heights to encourage children to use a range of muscles through crouching, reaching and twisting.

Under Fives

Pre-school Daily sessions for children aged 2-4 years

Baby & Toddler Play & Stay

Tuesday 10:00-11.30am Warm welcoming pre-school, £3 per family with an emphasis on outdoor Singing, music and movement learning and natural activities resources Sensory play activities

Encouraging creativity, curiosity and thinking skills as children explore our ever-changing activities

Light refreshments for adults and children

Forest School

Forest Tots

Tuesday morning 9am-12pm for children aged 3-4 years

Friday 10.00-11.30am £5 per family

Tree climbing, cooking on camp fires, den building, ropes and pulleys, natural craft activities, using tools and more!

A weekly Forest School for toddlers and carers

All children are mini explorers! We recognise that children's imaginations are often more powerful than adults! Adult designed toys often only serve one purpose and can actually limit a child's imagination e.g. a cooker will always be a cooker, but in a child's world, a large cardboard box could be a rocket, a boat, a nest and a cooker! Our role play involves a range of open-ended resources, to enable our children to really use their creativity. Our adult Play Leaders then sensitively develop children's thinking by the gentle power of suggestion, rather than imposing learning.

Craft, cooking, tools and exploring

TIONAL LEARNING THROUGH A R I P S PLAY IN Please call 07582 452024

or email for more info Registered charity number: 700305

The Recreation Centre, Pershore Road, Eckington, WR10 3AJ 8

Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

Eckington Under Fives embraces the understanding that children learn as they play and that in play children learn how to learn. We are celebrating our 40th Anniversary this year. Join us with your little ones for an Open Morning and Forest Picnic on Monday 8 October. Please email or visit for more details.

To advertise call: 01684 770566

Education ST ALBAN’S



Learning In A World Beyond The Classroom King’s Hawford King’s Hawford, catering for children aged 2 to 11, is an exciting place to learn and develop. From embracing every academic challenge, dancing singing and performing, learning a new language, to exploring the great outdoors, King’s Hawford children embrace every aspect of school life. There is a strong focus on play-based and outdoor learning together with a combination of structured play, first-hand experience, and some directed teaching. The development of the whole child is considered crucial. We believe that every child should experience the world beyond the classroom as an essential part of learning and personal development. Here at King’s Hawford, we are extremely fortunate to be set in large grounds which are rich in opportunities. We make full use of our local area to enhance our educational provision. King’s Hawford has been awarded the LotC Mark (Gold) Certificate for learning outside the classroom, an award held by only 35 schools nationally. If you would like to know more about joining King’s Hawford, please call our Registrar, Mrs Melanie Adams, on 01905 451292 or email

King’s St Alban’s Set in the heart of Worcester, King’s St Alban’s caters for children aged 4 to 11, perfectly combining state of the art facilities, a range of outdoor areas and a wealth of opportunities to ensure that your child’s education goes far beyond the classroom. Choosing the right school is an important decision and we work hard to ensure that you and your child feel happy here right from your very first visit. Our Open Morning, on Saturday 29 September, will give you a good insight into what we have to offer and you are also welcome to visit us on a normal school day. We tailor a number of taster events to suit children of different ages, offering science and art activities, a Lego Workshop and for younger children, a Fairy-tale themed adventure walk. By the time entrance tests come around (for children aged 7 to 11) we are already familiar friends. If you would like to know more about joining King’s St Alban’s please call our Registrar, Mrs Louise Robins, on 01905 363592 or email for more information.

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Girls Who Change The World Malvern St James is a leading independent school for girls aged 4-18. What helps to make us distinct and refreshing, is our recognition and active support for the individual talents, interests and passions of girls, and the liberating and inclusive ethos the school embraces. MSJ doesn’t produce a ‘type’ of girl. We achieve excellent academic results but we are not an exam factory. Our ethos is one of inclusion and respect. Girls can pursue their passions and interests in the field of their choice – all routes are equal. It may be horse riding, engineering, politics, the environment or climbing. We recognise the importance of allowing each individual to grow and flourish. We find ways to support girls to achieve their passions. If you would like to arrange a tour of Malvern St James, please contact Admissions on 01684 892288 or by email

Award Votes Abberley Hall As Best Independent School At a black tie reception held at the University of Worcester Arena, the winners of the Worcestershire Education Awards 2018 were announced. Abberley Hall are delighted to be crowned the winner of the 'Best Independent School' category and receive this wonderful accolade.

Where learning goes hand in hand with discovery Worcester, WR6 6DD T: 01299 896275

Co-education Boarding & Day Prep School for 2-13 year olds, based in 90 acres of Worcestershire countryside. Two hours from London, an hour from the Cotswolds and Birmingham Airport.

The awards, run by Worcester News in partnership with the University of Worcester, celebrate the wonderful work carried out in Worcestershire by people in the education sector. Will Lockett, Headmaster of Abberley Hall says, “it’s fabulous news that Abberley Hall won the ‘Best Independent School’ award, as Headmaster here, I am deeply aware of what a fabulous educational experience our pupils are so lucky to have. It is also wonderful for such a hard-working team to have this recognition. The awards ceremony really drove home how much brilliant work is being done in the education sector throughout Worcestershire, not least at the University, so recognition in this forum makes me very happy indeed!" The guest speaker for the evening was Olympic Gold Medallist, Duncan Goodhew. Duncan is Chairman of Premier Education Group PLC, which is the UK's largest sports coaching company delivering into 15 percent of primary schools.


Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

To advertise call: 01684 770566

Clubs And Classes Action-packed Ofsted registered Holiday Camps The first half term of the school year has come around fast! Are you in search of an activity provider? Do you want your child to stay active throughout the October half term? Enjoy a fun filled school holiday at Aspire Active Camps! For children aged 4 -14, Active Camps provides sports and activities every school holiday throughout the year. Our number one aim is to ensure your child has fun. Safety is paramount and we go that extra mile as an Ofsted registered provider to give you peace of mind in knowing that your child is cared for in the best environment possible. We provide fantastic early booking offers, in addition to discount offers and a loyalty scheme to our valued customers. As we are Ofsted registered you are also able to pay via childcare vouchers. Our next camps are taking place during the October half term at multiple locations across the Midlands. Our Hagley camp is based at Hagley High School and will be running our Multi Sports Academy, Gym Beatz Academy and, for 12-14 year olds, Active Leaders. Our Alvechurch camp at Alvechurch Middle School and Crown Meadow First School, our Bromsgrove Camp at St John’s C of E Middle School Academy and our Worcester Camp at Nunnery Wood High School will have our Multi Sports Academy and Active Leaders. A standard day at our camps is 8am – 4pm, however, we also offer Xtra time which runs from 4pm – 6pm. If you want to join us at Active Camps for an action-packed holiday, visit or call 0121 663 1979.

Established 1992 Fully Qualified Instructors Specialised Classes 4 – 16 years Beginners, Intermediate & Advanced

Train with Sensei Jags Shoker, 3rd Dan

Monday: St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, Droitwich Spa 5.00 – 6.00pm Wed & Fri: The Parish Centre, Barnt Green 5.30 – 6.30pm Friday: Parkside Middle School, Bromsgrove 3.40 – 4.40pm Saturday: St Peters RC First School, Bromsgrove 9.15–10.15 am Special offer 5 FREE lessons

Call: 07730 899722

Would you like to advertise your business with us? Book TODAY call 07970977229

Remember, Remember The 5th Of November By Olivia Malaure Gunpowder, treason, and plot, I see no reason why gunpowder treason should ever be forgot. The ‘plot’ was simple - to blow up The Houses of Parliament with barrels of gunpowder hidden in its cellar. Guy Fawkes was given the job of lighting the fuse but, on the 5 November 1605, the plot was discovered and he was taken to the Tower Of London and executed. To celebrate his own survival, King James 1 ordered his people to light a bonfire every year on the 5 November. You don’t have to go far to be part of the crackle and fizz of Bonfire Night. New local fireworks events pop up annually across Hereford and Worcester. Many schools hold organised fireworks displays but if the idea of being outdoors with very young children on a cold November evening sends a chill down your spine, here are some ideas to help you enjoy Bonfire Night at home. Start with a Bang: Kids love listening to the popping of microwave popcorn Add some Colour: Make a rocket! Wrap silver paper around an empty kitchen roll tube and stick down. Cut out a circle of coloured card (approx 9cm) and make a cone shape. Tape the cone to the top of the cylinder. Decorate the cylinder with stickers and stick strips of red or orange cellophane to the bottom for flames. Kids can fly their creations around the garden! Bonfire Baked Potatoes: Cook up edible bonfires! Fill jacket potatoes with child-friendly toppings. Sprinkle some Red Leicester cheese on top for flames, or put the fire out with a spoonful of creme fraiche on top! Light Up the Night Sky: Kids love torches and they’re a fun, safe way for them to play in the dark and enjoy the atmosphere of Bonfire Night. If you are planning to let off fireworks, consult the Firework Code at

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Parenting Should You Help with Homework?

Teaching Your Child And

When your children settle down to do homework, do you keep close tabs on them and routinely offer to help? Or is your approach more hand’s off? Researchers from Finland have found that although most homework assistance aims at helping the child, one approach is much better at instilling persistence. The study looked at children aged from 8 to 11 years and found that when parents offered opportunities for their child to work independently that the child demonstrated an increased ability to work persistently on his or her school assignments when tested 12 months later. However, when parents provided concrete assistance to their child, the less task-persistent the child’s behaviour later became. This in turn, made parents offer more and more help. "One possible explanation is that when a parent gives a child the opportunity to do homework autonomously, this sends out a message that they believe in their child's skills and capabilities. This, in turn, makes the child believe in him or herself, and in his or her skills and capabilities," Associate Professor, Jaana Viljaranta from the University of Eastern Finland explained. Similarly, concrete homework assistance - especially if not requested by a child may send out a message that a parent doesn't believe in their child's ability to do their homework. When a parent offers the child an opportunity for autonomous working, the child will work persistently, which leads to better development of skills. If, however, a parent’s homework assistance involves plenty of concrete help, the child will work less persistently, leading to poorer development of skills. It is important for parents to take their child’s needs into consideration when offering homework assistance. More info at 12

Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

If you ask parents what they wished they had done before having children, they will often say “I wish I had appreciated my sleep more!”

years with disrupted nights. So what is the answer for families where sleep or lack of it has become a significant issue and how much sleep do children actually need?

By Dr Elise Kearney,

Lots of young children find it difficult to settle down to sleep and will wake up during the night. For some families, this might not be a problem. However, if you and your child are suffering from lack of sleep, there are some techniques you can try. Every child is different, so only do what you feel comfortable with and what you think will suit your child.

There is no coincidence that sleep deprivation has been used as a method of torture through the ages. When you are not getting anything near a full night’s sleep you may long for those pre-children uninterrupted nights of blissful sleep. It is not unusual for many parents to go for Age


May be appropriate

Not recommended


14 to 17 hours

11 to 13 hours

Less than 11 hours

18 to 19 hours

More than 19 hours

10 to 11 hours

Less than 10 hours

16 to 18 hours

More than 18 hours

9 to 10 hours

Less than 9 hours

15 to 16 hours

More than 16 hours

8 to 9 hours

Less than 8 hours

14 hours

More than 14 hours

7 to 8 hours

Less than 7 hours

12 hours

More than 12 hours

7 hours

Less than 7 hours

11 hours

More than 11 hours

6 hours

Less than 6 hours

10 to 11 hours

More than 11 hours

0-3 months Infants

12 to 15 hours

4-11 months Toddlers

11 to 14 hours

1-2 years Preschoolers

10 to 13 hours

3-5 years School-aged Children

9 to 11 hours

6-13 years Teenagers

8 to 10 hours

14-17 years Young Adults

7 to 9 hours

18-25 years

Guidelines developed by The National Sleep Foundation (2018) To advertise call: 01684 770566

Your Family Good Sleep Habits


If your child won’t go to sleep • If your child complains that they’re without you: This technique can help hungry at night, try giving them a bowl of toddlers (over 12 months) or older cereal and milk before bed (making sure children and when your child wakes in the you brush their teeth afterwards!). middle of the night. It may take your child • If your child is afraid of the dark, use a a long time to settle when you first start. nightlight or leaving a landing light on. • Have a regular calming and consistent • Don’t let your child look at laptops, bedtime routine, where possible keeping tablets or phones in the 60 minutes the lights dimmed. before bed, the light from screens can • Put your child to bed when they’re interfere with sleep. drowsy, but awake and kiss them • When seeing to your child during the goodnight. night, be as boring as possible, leave lights • Promise to go back in a few moments off, avoid eye contact and don’t talk more to give them another kiss. You can use than necessary. strokes or pats instead of kisses if your • Avoid long naps in the afternoon or child sleeps in a cot and you can’t reach teens falling asleep early evening! them to give them a kiss or you child doesn’t want to be kissed Once a sleep pattern has become a habit • Return almost immediately to give a kiss. It takes a lot of patience, consistency and If you struggle with getting your • Take a few steps to the door, then commitment to change this pattern. child to go to bed: return immediately to give a kiss. Certainly, it will be one of the difficulties • First decide what time you want your • Promise to return in a few moments to that most parents can relate to at some child to go to bed. give them another kiss. point in their child’s lives. Special • Start a 20-minute “winding down” • Put something away or do something in circumstances can make sleep patterns bedtime routine close to the time that the room then give them a kiss. more resistant to change. For example, your child normally falls asleep. Bring this • As long as the child stays in bed, keep children who have experienced early forward by 5 to 10 minutes a week or 15 returning to give more kisses. trauma, serious health difficulties, loss of minutes if your child is in the habit of • Do something outside their room and a parent, multiple life changes including going to bed very late until you get to return to give kisses. move of house or school, the death of a the bedtime you want. • If the child gets out of bed, say: “Back close family member or serious health • Set a limit on how much time you spend into bed and I’ll give you a kiss”. difficulties in the family. Sleep difficulties with your child when you put them to • Keep going back often to give kisses can often be reflective of anxiety. bed. For example, read only one story, until they’re asleep. then tuck them in and say goodnight. • Repeat every time your child wakes Remember that sleep difficulties are very • Give your child their favourite toy or during the night. common place in the 5 years and under. comforter before settling into bed. • If your child gets up, keep taking them However, that does not help you when • Leave a beaker of water within reach back to bed again with very little fuss. you are feeling at the end of your tether and a dim light on if necessary. with sleep deprivation! Make sure you get • If your child gets up, keep taking them General sleep tips: support from family and friends. If a sleep back to bed again with very little fuss. • Make sure you have a calming, issue is affecting you or your family • Try to be consistent. predictable bedtime routine that happens remember that it is okay to ask for help. • Repeat this routine for several nights. at the same time and includes the same Even the most tricky sleep difficulties things every night with the lights dimmed. respond surprisingly quickly to treatment. Dr Elise Kearney runs a clinic at The Therapies Centre, The Fold, Bransford, Worcester and can be contacted on 07713755224 or find out more about the service she offers at: A mother of four and Chartered Consultant Child and Family Psychologist, Dr Kearney trained as a Clinical Psychologist in Glasgow. She has over 15 years of experience working with children and families in the NHS and privately. Dr Kearney offers 1:1 assessment and treatment sessions for a variety of difficulties including; difficulties stemming from family separation, bedtime or sleep problems, feeding difficulties or “fussy eating”, dealing with anger or “temper tantrums” and separation anxiety, difficulties around potty training, sibling rivalry or difficulties with sharing, starting nursery/school and transition to high school or College/University, anxiety, panic, phobias, low self-esteem, attachment difficulties, low mood and depression, behavioural problems, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), bereavement (this list is not exclusive).

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What’s On

Please check with the venue in case details have changed

The Courtyard

Eastnor Castle


The Tiger Who Came To Tea Join the teaguzzling tiger in this delightful family show; packed with oodles of magic, sing-a-long songs and clumsy chaos! 29-30 October

Artrix, School Drive, Bromsgrove, B60 1AX 01527 577330, The Nutcracker – Vienna Festival Ballet An enchanting Christmas story telling the tale of how Clara is given a wooden nutcracker as a Christmas present and then falls asleep under the Christmas tree. As midnight strikes she is awoken by giant mice and the magic begins. 14 October Crafty’s Halloween Spooktacular Crafty’s Halloween Spooktacular is a 45 minute songfilled, action packed performance – the perfect length for 2-7 year olds - after which the adventure continues as each child gets the chance to play Trick or Treat with Crafty and his friends, and receive a special spooky gift! 3 November Evesham Arts Centre Theatre, Victoria Avenue, Evesham, Worcs, WR11 4QH 01386 446944, Pirate Pearl and the Big Blue Monster Pirate Pearl lives aboard the good ship Mirabel with her crusty old shipmate - grandpa Bert! She’s not a real pirate - but Pearl loves to imagine she’s sailing the seven seas on a swashbuckling pirate adventure! 21 October Malvern Theatres, Grange Road, Malvern, Worcs, WR14 3HB 01684 892277, Teletubbies Live The Teletubbies’ first ever theatre show created especially for your little ones is here! Join Tinky Winky, Dipsy, Laa-Laa and Po in a show full of love and laughter as they explore the magical world of Teletubbyland. 19-20 September How To Hide A Lion An enchanting mini musical. When a lion is chased out of town, a little girl, Iris, helps him to find somewhere to hide. Iris embarks on a mission to squash her new friend into a variety of sneaky tight spots, as the misinformed town folk try and track him down. 17 October Palace Theatre, Alcester Street, Redditch, Worcs, B98 8AE 01527 65203, Professor Pepperpot Balloontastic Magic Show Local children’s entertainer and Balloon Maestro will exclusively perform his outstanding children’s magic show in Redditch, The Professor is well known within the local community and has earned the accolade as one of the best balloon modellers in the UK! Suitable for all ages. 29 September 14

Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

Hartlebury Castle

The Swan Theatre, The Moors, Worcester, WR1 3ED 01905 611427, Guess How Much I Love You Join Little & Big Nutbrown Hare, from the bestselling ‘Guess How Much I Love You’ and ‘I Love You All Year Round’ collection, as they leap off the page and onto the stage in this magical journey through the seasons. 2 October The Courtyard, Edgar Street, Hereford, HR4 9JR 01432 340555, The DaSilva Marionette Circus Troupe Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls… the Circus has come to town! Come and be amazed by aerial acrobatics on the flying trapeze, spectacular cycling stunts, trampolining ups and downs, and laugh at the antics of the cheeky clowns, one of whom takes the joke that bit too far – with disastrous consequences! 29 September The Frog And The Princess This exquisitely manipulated and humorous puppetry performance is a poignant re-telling of the Brothers Grimm tale that will entertain and delight family audiences. 29 October

Days Out...

mac Birmingham, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH 0121 446 3232 Marshmallow Laser Feast: In the Eyes of the Animals Discover what it’s like to be an animal in the forest through the eyes of four woodland species in Marshmallow Laser Feast’s award-winning 360° virtual reality experience In the Eyes of the Animal. 27-28 October Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings, Stoke Heath, Bromsgrove, Worcs, B60 4JR 01527 831363, Half-Term Activities See website for more details.



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Black Country Living Museum, Tipton Road, Dudley, West Midlands DY1 4SQ 0121 557 9643 Halloween Nights See street entertainers bring Halloween to life as you explore an eerie atmosphere of Halloween fun! Bring the whole family along including the kids treat bags for a sweet surprise as you ‘Trick or Treat’ around the Museum’s houses and shops. 26, 27, 30 and 31 October Hartlebury Castle, Hartlebury, Nr Kidderminster, Worcs, DY11 7XZ 01299 250416, Heritage Open Days A free family event where you can explore over 1000 years of history, meet some of the Castle’s servants and get hands-on with the museum collections. 15-16 September

Autumn Magic Four fun family days of Autumn themed craft activities. You can also carve a pumpkin for your Halloween celebrations. 23 - 26 October City Art Gallery and Museum Foregate Street, Worcester WR1 1DT 01905 25371 PLAY with PRINT Come and print all manner of ghosts, black cats, toads, owls, witches and wizards in Stephen Fowler’s Halloween themed printing workshop. You will be shown how to make creative rollers and rubber stamps, and an archive of Fowler’s rubber stamps will be available to use. We will make a collective print picture, and participants can take a number of prints home with them. 31 October


Eastnor Castle, Ledbury, Herefordshire, HR8 1RL 01531 633160, Family Autmun Antics Come along and celebrate the start of Autumn where leaf kicking, conker collecting and tree climbing are all actively encouraged! The Herefordshire Wildlife Trust will also be here with apple pressing, leaf art, making elf homes, bush craft & more! 23 September Broomstick Making And Racing Every Wizard and Witch needs a broomstick to travel on. Come and design, make and test yours! The last open day of the season. 30 September Hampton Court Castle and Gardens, Hope-under-Dinmore, Leominster, HR6 0PN 01568 797676, Halloween At The Castle During Halloween half term we will be opening our spooky cellars to those who dare to go beneath the castle! 27 - 4 November

What’s On

Please mention you saw this event in Families Hereford & Worcester Magazine

Malvern Autumn Show

Severn Valley Railway

Severn Valley Railway, Kidderminster Station, Comberton Hill, Kidderminster, DY10 1QX 01299 403816,

quality plants from these award-winning nurseries. The UK National Giant Vegetable Championship promises to return bigger and better than ever before with a broad variety of oversized vegetables. A show for all the family and throws open its gates to welcome toddlers to teenagers and big kids too. 29-30 September

Autumn Steam Gala Our flagship gala in 2018 is planned to be bigger and better than ever, with its famed all-night running array of visiting locomotives and intensive timetable. A great family event. 20-23 September PAW Patrol Visit Take a steam train ride out into the countryside and see PAW Patrol’s Marshall and Rubble who will appear at regular intervals throughout the day at The Engine House Visitor Centre at Highley. You can also enjoy Magic Shows by A Box of Tricks and meet some visiting animal friends with The Animal Man. Your train ticket permits travel on the Railway for the whole day so you can make it a day of adventure. Don’t forget to bring your camera. 20-21 October

National Trust...

Ghost Trains Dare to take a thrilling steam train ride in the dark? Arrive early at Kidderminster Station where Disco Daddy will be there to entertain you. We’ll also have a facepainter on hand to give you the perfect Halloween makeover. Once aboard the train, travel in the eery darkness to Arley, passing through our haunted stations on the way. But be aware, there may be mysterious passengers joining you on the train. When you arrive, prepare to be frightened as the station’s spooky residents come alive! 27 30 and 31October

Crime And Punishment Of The Eighteenth Century A half-term full of gruesome tales of crime and punishment in the eighteenth century. With a trail to complete, stories to uncover and gruesome facts to learn, there’s plenty to do. 27 October - 4 November

Herefordshire Art Week 07983 495966 Herefordshire Art Week 9-day art trail following bright pink signs across the whole of Herefordshire. Meet artists in the intimacy of their homes and studios. 101 venues across the county. 8-16 September Queenswood Country Park, Hope Under Dinmore, Herefordshire, HR6 0PY UK Fungus Day A celebration of everything mycological. Run by the Herefordshire Fungus Survey Group there will be a programme of forays throughout the day. In addition there will be a display of named fungi, Powerpoint presentations and the chance for people to bring specimens for identification. Suitable for all ages. 6 October Three Counties Showground, Malvern, WR13 6NW Malvern Autumn Show A weekend of home-grown family fun. You can browse top exhibits in the RHS Flower Show and purchase Berrington Hall, nr Leominster, HR6 0DW Tel: 01568 615721 Apple weekend A celebration of Berrington’s orchard and the traditions that surround the the annual harvest. Horse and carriage rides, apple pressing demonstrations in the gardens, and apple themed trail and even some apple themed goods in the shop and tea-room. 6-7 October

Brockhampton Estate, Greenfields, Bringsty, Herefordshire, WR6 5TB Tel: 01885 482077 Spooky Hallowe’en Family Trai Explore the ruined chapel, orchards and around the manor house to discover the spooky hidden clues and discover the history behind Hallowe’en. 27 October - 4 November Croft Castle, Yarpole, nr Leominster, HR6 9PW Tel: 01568 780246 A Taste Of Autumn At Croft Make and sample some delicious apple juice from our heritage apple varieties such as Ellison’s orange, Gascoyne’s Scarlet and Cockles pippin. Reconnect with nature in our garden room and see who’s checked into the bug hotel. 29-30 September

Willow The Witch’s Garden Trail Follow our trail through the gardens, deciphering the clues and discovering different spells and potion ingredients as you go. See if you can cast the incantation at the end to claim your prize. 27 October - 4 November Croome Park, Croome D’Abitot, WR8 9DW Tel: 01905 371006 Apple Bobbin’ - Family Trail Apple bobbin’ is traditionally played at Halloween and was enjoyed by the Georgians. Have fun searching the grounds for all the different varieties of apples grown and don’t forget to collect your prize! 20 October-4 November

Cotswold Wildlife Park Hanbury Hall, School Road, Hanbury, Droitwich, WR9 7EA Tel: 01527 821214 Apple Weekend Local produce stalls, activities and crafts for children, expert advice and delicious food, all with an apple inspired twist! 6-7 October Snowshill Manor and Garden, Snowshill, near Broadway, WR12 7JU Tel: 01386 852410 Hallowe’en Trail Follow the trail to discover more about spooky Snowshill. 20-28 October

Farm Parks... All Things Wild Nature Centre, Station Road, Honeybourne, Nr Evesham, WR11 7QZ 01386 833083, An all-weather attraction with a wide range of animals, a soft play area, outside play area, indoor tractors, animals encounter room, cafe, new barefoot walk, dinosaurs, birthday parties and much more. Cotswold Wildlife Park & Gardens, Burford, Oxfordshire, OX18 4JP 01993 823006, Daily Activities. Penguin feeding takes place every day at 11am and 3pm in the Walled Garden. There are keepers on hand to answer questions. Daily Lemur talks at 12noon. All the animals in the children’s farmyard may be approached and in some cases will allow themselves to be touched or stroked. Don’t miss the ‘Skymaze’ adventure playground. Little Owl Farm Park, Owl Hill Lane, Dunhampton, DY13 9SS 01905 620325, A variety of animals, petting area, soft play, pedal tractors, nature trail, cafe and picnic area. Newbridge Farm Park, Little Marcle, Nr Ledbury, HR8 2QG 01531 670780, An ideal place for you, your family and friends to enjoy a day out in the countryside. Visitors can enjoy a tractor ride, pony rides, handling the small animals and feeding the bigger animals. Suitable for all ages. There are trampolines, giant sandpits, zip wire, indoor soft toddler play area and lots more! Worcestershire Wildlife Trust, Lower Smite Farm, Smite Hill, Hindlip, Worcester, WR3 8SZ 01905 754919 Half-Term Activities See website for more details.

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Ofsted registered

Action-packed childcare this


Half Term 29th October - 2nd November Open from 8am-6pm


Hagley High School


St Johns CofE Middle School Academy


Nunnery Wood High School


Alvechurch Middle School and Crown Meadow First School We accept childcare vouchers

Early Bird Offer

Book before 5pm on Friday 12th October

ÂŁ16 per day 8am-4pm - Xtra Time available up to 6pm if required. See website for full details. Terms and conditions apply,

Book early and pay only

ÂŁ2 per hour

For more info visit or call 0121 663 1979

All Things Wild Nature Centre Station Road, Honeybourne, Near Evesham, Worcestershire. WR11 7QZ 01386 833083

Explore & Discover! ___ Activities, events and

history to uncover at Avoncroft Museum See our website for Autumn activities

Avoncroft -" Museum 16

Families Hereford & Worcester

To advertise call: 01684 770566

Families Hereford & Worcester September-October 2018  

A FREE magazine which brings local news, information about activities and events, competitions and features to local parents and carers.

Families Hereford & Worcester September-October 2018  

A FREE magazine which brings local news, information about activities and events, competitions and features to local parents and carers.