Families North Yorkshire Nov/Dec 2020

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IN THIS ISSUE

Christmas Gift Ideas for All Choosing a Tutor Early Years – the Importance of Play Issue 97 November/December 2020 familiesonline.co.uk

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Contact Us Laura Macaulay Editor, Families North Yorkshire Magazine E – editor@ familiesnorthyorkshire.co.uk T – 07794909820 FB @FamiliesNYMag Twitter @FamiliesNYMag

In This Issue 4.

Education

8.

Early Years

9.

Health

The days are shortening rapidly now and, although life is challenging, Christmas is on the horizon. At least, we will get some quality time with our children. The celebrations might feel a bit different this year, but there are still things to be excited about! This issue includes everything you need to help you prepare for the festivities, including the Treasures of Wetherby Gift Guide, ideas for what to buy that person in your life who has it all and some fabulous ideas for the home by Upside Down Design in York. And, of course, our popular ‘Where’s Santa?’ Directory. If you’re looking for a tutor for your child or how to improve your child’s working memory, then do check out our Education section. We’ve also got some great articles about the importance of play – for both children and parents too! Wishing you a Merry Christmas from everybody at Families North Yorkshire Magazine!

10. Travel 11.

Contents

Welcome

Work

12. Christmas Families is a registered trademark of LCMB Ltd, Remenham House, Regatta Place, Marlow Road, Bourne End, Bucks SL8 5TD. The contents of this magazine are fully protected by copyright and none of the editorial or photographic matter may be reproduced in any form without prior consent of Families Print Ltd. Every care is taken in the preparation of this magazine but Families Print Ltd, its distributors, franchisees and LCMB Ltd cannot be held responsible for the claims of advertisers nor for the accuracy of the contents, or any consequences thereof.

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Education

Choosing a Tutor for Your Child By Kate Hilpern In the past, parents might employ a tutor, discreetly, to help their child keep up at school. Now tutoring is much more high profile and focuses on making students more academically competitive – getting ahead, not just keeping up. The upside is that parents have a greater choice of highly professional and specialist tutors. However, because employing a tutor is regarded by some as the mark of ‘good’ parenting, parents may waste their money when it isn’t necessary, with little or no benefit to their child. If you are considering tuition, have a clear objective such as helping your child to prepare for an exam, offering support after an extended absence from school or addressing a particular problem area. A vague feeling of unease because every other pupil in the class seems to have a tutor probably isn’t sufficient reason!

How do you go about finding a tutor? Word-of-mouth can be very effective. Talk to friends and parents at the school gates, even ask your child’s teachers for tutors in your area who are reliable, friendly and get results. Bear in mind though, that the fantastic tutor who worked wonders with your neighbour’s child may not develop the same rapport with your own. Tutoring websites, which act rather like newsagents’ advertising boards, are a useful starting point. These are little more than a collection of small ads but tuition offered here will be relatively affordable, though the onus is on parents to interview potential

g ppin e a r ift w ailabl g e Fre vice av ser

tutors. Or you may want to consider local tuition companies that feature in magazines like Families. Another option is a tutor agency. These range from small, local concerns to national or even international companies. All provide a personal service and offer a choice of highly experienced, hand-picked and expert tutors, custom-built to meet your child’s needs. You’ll end up paying more but the best agencies take immense care vetting, training and matching their tutors and conducting careful follow-ups. With costs ranging from £25 to £150+ an hour, depending on the subject and your location, tuition is an investment. There’s no iron-clad guarantee that it will transform your child’s school grades so, if you proceed, then taking care how and who you choose is definitely the first step in the right direction. Kate Hilpern is from the Good Schools Guide, UK’s leading independent source of school reviews, education information and advice. The Good Schools Guide reviews over 50 tutor agencies, having visited each and talked to staff and former clients. For more info, visit www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk

Treasures Toys celebrating 10 years in Wetherby

Christmas Catalogue out now packed with great offers

Exclusive Treasures Shopping Appointments available Contact us to book yours on 01937 589187 Open Sundays 11am – 4pm in December

www.treasurestoys.co.uk No.8 High Street Wetherby LS22 6LT

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Education

Improving your Child’s Working Memory Working memory is the part of the brain that stores information so it can use it again. Children use this all the time: to remember what they read in the previous paragraph of a book, when doing mental maths and to follow directions with lots of steps. The good news is that, if your child’s working memory seems poor, it can be improved with practice. Here are some ideas that might help:

Encourage questions To learn and remember, a child needs to fully understand a topic. By asking questions, children actively participate in learning, helping them develop a deeper understanding of the subject.

Let your child be the teacher Only when you fully understand something can you truly explain it. To check your child’s understanding, get them to tell you what they know. “Teaching you” knowledge they just learned is more likely to make it stick.

Discuss a topic and ask your child’s opinion Learning is much more fun if you can discuss topics and exchange opinions. If your child is expecting a discussion, they are more likely to retain the information for at least the amount of time required to answer questions about it. Once an engaging discussion has happened, they are more likely to remember the subject matter.

Visualisation and flashcards Get your child to picture something in their mind and then describe it. Initially they may need to draw the picture first, but,

with practice, they may no longer need to do this. Flashcards with words or pictures can also be used to practice spellings or the meanings of words.

Use the senses Your child will develop a better relationship with what they are learning if they engage with it in lots of ways. Get your child to talk, act out using props, read and listen to audio or podcasts.

Encourage active reading Active reading involves underlining or highlighting text or making notes on stickers. This helps your child keep the information in mind. Pair with asking questions or discussing a topic as described above! Break information down Smaller amounts of information are easier to remember. Build up from there. Encourage your child to organise the information into lists with headings and use different colours to make certain parts stand out.

The

Mount School York

SPACE TO LEARN SPACE TO THRIVE SPACE TO BE OW WE KN N CA GIRLS

At The Mount campus providing

School we benefit girls with a safe

“The care my daughter received during lockdown and since returning to school is just amazing.” Current parent

from a spacious and secure place

16 acre to learn.

Arrange a visit to come and explore mountschoolyork.co.uk An exceptional education for girls *The Mount School York judged excellent in ISI Inspection. familiesonline.co.uk

www.mountschoolyork.co.uk 5


Education

New Nursery opens at Barlow Primary School Barlow Primary School are opening a brand-new nursery with places currently available for a January or an Easter start. The ten-place nursery offers provision for 3 and 4-years olds from 8.00am to 3.15pm each day within the EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) class. There are a range of learning areas in the classroom including a reading pod, a home corner, construction and crafts areas and access to iPads and beebot robots. Outdoor play is central to the school’s learning vision and children have access to a fantastic outdoor area featuring a water feature, mud kitchen, stage, bikes and trikes and den-building materials. Skilled practitioners offer opportunities to take part in Forest School activities, gardening, cooking and the school therapy dog, Twig, visits every three weeks to meet the children. Children’s learning journeys are documented on Tapestry, an online learning platform so parents can see photos and evidence of their child’s learning through play. Breakfast Club and hot school lunches are available to all our pupils and visits to the school can be arranged to meet the team and experience the special family ethos. School Business Manager, Julie Marwood, said: “We are really excited to be welcoming nursery pupils after Christmas, extending the provision for children in our village and surrounding areas. For a small school, there are lots of activities and resources for the children to play with and our EYFS outdoor play area is attracting lots of interest. Our families find a small school is a great setting for their younger children - with fewer

children, it’s less daunting and experienced staff team can offer personalised learning. Barlow is located just south of Selby and attracts families from the wider area including Selby, Drax, Carlton-in-Snaith and Camblesforth, who are looking for a family-feel small school for their child’s education. The school is proud to be part of a threeschool federation with Burton Salmon and Chapel Haddlesey Primary Schools, who also offer nursery provision. More information is available on the school’s website - www. barlowschool.org.uk or by calling 01757 618319. We can offer socially distanced visits to see our setting and meet the team please call for more information.

Adapting to school life with COVID-19 Like many people across the world, The Mount School community is adapting to a new normal – a new way of working and living with the Covid-19 pandemic. The Mount School York, a leading day and boarding school for girls in the heart of York, benefits from a spacious campus with large classrooms, dedicated play areas and ample outdoor space. This provides girls at The Mount with a safe and secure environment for them to continue their education with very little disruption. Teachers at The Mount continue to teach a full bespoke curriculum, from Early Years to Sixth Form. All year groups are taught by a team of specialist teachers in music and drama lessons, sport and games, extra-curricular activities, and their unique Global Thinking programme. Through these opportunities’ girls continue their personal development, learn new skills, challenge themselves, build confidence and have fun! “Our priority is and always will be to create an environment where girls feel protected and happy. We are currently following the Government guidelines and there are many safety measures in place. The guidelines have been communicated to the girls in age appropriate way,” comments Adrienne Richmond, Principal. “The girls have quickly adapted to the measures, demonstrating the resilience and confidence we are proud to nurture in Mount girls.” Driven by their Quaker principles, The Mount places an emphasis on respecting and valuing every individual with staff and girls looking out for and caring for one another. They provide personalised pastoral support for every pupil and have a team of expert pastoral staff. 6

The Mount continues to be progressive in the use of digital technology. Teachers are skilled in delivering lessons using a variety of platforms. They utilise apps and software in their teaching. Mount pupils confidently and safely use Microsoft Teams as well as other software to enhance and reinforce their learning. As such, The Mount is well equipped to provide remote learning for pupils of all ages. Throughout the summer term lockdown, all the girls remained engaged with the curriculum. “Teachers worked with pupils in many diverse ways, including providing video and written instructions, photo assignments and setting self-marking quizzes which pupils could answer and mark themselves.” commented Rachel Capper, Head of Junior School. “At The Mount we are leaders in educating girls and understanding their needs. As the needs of girls change, we are confident that we have the space to evolve. Our aim will always be to ensure Mount girls are equipped with the skills, ambition, and courage to succeed, in everything they aspire to do and anything they aspire to be,” adds Adrienne Richmond.

familiesonline.co.uk


Education

New organisation in North Yorkshire supporting families raising disabled children, and those with special educational needs. Parent Carer Voice (PCV) is the parent carer forum for North Yorkshire. The forum supports families with children and young people aged up to 25 years old who have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). We know how isolating and confusing it can be to navigate services and family life with SEND, so we organise events, workshops and training, and share information. Our vision is to inform, empower and represent the collective voice of families with SEND children across the region. PCV is made up of members who are parent carers living in North Yorkshire. We are a community, connecting families through shared information, experiences and mutual support. We work together, using our collective voice, working closely and co-productively with our strategic partners and service providers such as the local authority and CCGs, to help improve services and support for families. We gather the voices of parent carers in order to share these with our strategic partners and work co-productively for positive change. Our Facebook page (Parent Carer Voice North Yorkshire Forum) enables people to exchange information relevant to SEND issues. Members benefit from being part of a closed Facebook group where they can connect, support one another, and share personal stories in a safe and private space. In addition,

familiesonline.co.uk

our website (www.parentcarervoiceuk.org) includes details of forthcoming events, together with a range of resources to help parents navigate the confusing world of SEND. There’s also a news section featuring the latest SEND-related news for North Yorkshire. PCV is free to join and membership is open to anyone living in North Yorkshire who is raising a child aged up to 25 years old, who has special educational needs and/or a disability. Members benefit from support from other parent carers, useful information and resources, and events and training to help inform and support their journey through the SEND services and beyond. If you’re a parent (or grandparent) carer we’d love you to join us. You can become a member by completing the online form on our website, or email info@parentcarervoiceuk.org to request a printed copy of our membership form. We’d also like to hear from you if you are interested in being part of the PCV steering group. The group is mainly made up of parent carers who volunteer their time to come together every month to discuss SEND issues families in North Yorkshire may be facing, as well as to generate ideas and agree priorities for PCV. Steering group members may also have additional responsibilities, depending on their area of expertise and the time they can commit to the forum. Being part of the steering group presents an opportunity to influence positive change and make a difference for SEND families in North Yorkshire, working closely with parent-carers and other stakeholders. To find out more, please email us at info@parentcarervoiceuk.org or call 07396 641232.

7


Early Years

The Importance of Toddler Play By Dr Sarah Mundy

“One of the biggest complaints from adults about their own childhood is the lack of play with their parents” (Margot Sutherland, Child Psychotherapist, The Science of Parenting). Play is an enjoyable part of childhood, but also an important one for the developing brain. Through play, children develop physically, emotionally, cognitively and creatively. It allows them to engage in the world in a way that feels safe, explore different roles, address fears, and develop confidence. Children who have parents who actively play with them, learn about sharing, problem solving and decision-making more quickly than those who don’t. Playing with your child also helps you understand their world and shows them you are interested in them, both important aspects of a secure attachment relationship, which is seen as the cornerstone of a child’s development. It’s therefore very important to make time for play with our children, even though prioritising this can sometimes be difficult. So, how do we initiate play? And what do we do?

A good environment is key Without overloading your child, provide toys and varied activities (which stimulate different senses) without too many distractions. Children need to engage in both calming as well as stimulating activities, so they can differentiate between the two and learn to regulate their feelings.

CLASSES, PARTIES & CAMPS for children 4 months to 12 years For every stage of your child's development, the little gym offers a diverse range of of classes, camps and parties filled with FUN, music, movement and laughter. All in our own purpose built facilities.

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You’ve made the time and created the environment. Now what? You may feel out of your comfort zone. Try not to worry. Make play a joint venture but be led by your child. To enhance connection, Dan Hughes, clinical psychologist, refers to the process of ‘follow, lead, follow’ – let your child explore; show enjoyment; mirror what they are doing and build upon it for them, so that they can expand their play repertoire. Try to stick to their agenda, not yours. Repetition is an important part of learning and completely normal – even if dull for you!

Make playtime count Attachment play focuses on connection. It is characterised by shared activities involving eye contact and mirroring – like peek-a-boo, drumming together and messy play. Letting children take the lead and being accepting, not critical, helps them learn and strengthens your connection. To maximise play time, turn housework into a game! Incorporate play and physical activity too – time spent in natural spaces outdoors is also good for both your wellbeing. Dr Sarah Mundy is Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Author of Parenting Through Stories. More info at www.parentingthroughstories.com familiesonline.co.uk


Health

Parents Need to Play Too By Andrew Campbell In our hectic modern lives as parents, we can focus so heavily on work and family commitments that we never have time for pure fun. Somewhere between childhood and adulthood, we stopped playing. Adult play may be dismissed as a waste of time by some, but it is actually a vital opportunity to forget about our responsibilities for a while and allows ourselves to be social in a creative, unstructured way.

Benefits of adult play

What is adult play?

While the benefits of play for healthy child development are well known, it is also beneficial to people of all ages. Play can be a great source of stimulation and relaxation for adults.

Play can be anything from messing around with friends, going for a bike ride with your partner or playing ball with your dog to dressing up with your children. There doesn’t need to be any point to the activity beyond enjoying yourself. Focus your attention on the actual experience, not on accomplishing any goal. Play is being joyfully immersed in the moment, and as adults, we rarely do that.

Play has been shown to release endorphins, improve brain functionality, and stimulate creativity. And it can even help to keep us young and feeling energetic. Studies show that play improves memory and stimulates the growth of the cerebral cortex. Playing together has been found to help couples rekindle their relationship and explore other forms of emotional intimacy. Playing with your children, pets, friends, work colleagues and partners is a good way to fuel your imagination. It also boosts creativity, emotional well-being and problem-solving abilities. Play can also make work more productive and pleasurable.

familiesonline.co.uk

Leisure time as adults often means zoning out in front of the television or a screen rather than engaging in active play like we did as children. Just because we have responsibilities, it doesn’t mean we have to take ourselves so seriously and make life all about work. Regardless of our age and pressures we all need to play. By giving yourself permission to play with the joyful abandon of childhood you can have a lot of fun and you will benefit from increased health and reduced stress.

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Travel

27 Nov 2020 –3 Jan 2021 Advance booking essential

Lotherton's magical family Christmas returns with changes for your safety

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 either 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.chillypowder.com For more about Chilly Powder chalets for summer and winter visit www.chillypowder.com

thechristmasexperience.co.uk

LMG233_Lotherton_TCE2020_ValeOfYork_87x130_AW.indd 1

Home from home with Chilli Powder

24/09/2020 17:31

For all ages 0-Adult

Swim shop selling baby wet suits, re-usable swim nappys & nappy covers NEW inclusive classes for all abilities 1:1, 2:1 or group at Cawood & Bubwith

Cawood Park, Ryther Road, Cawood, Selby YO8 3TT Willow Lodge, Brighton Road, Bubwith Yo8 6DQ Weighton Wold pool, Beverley Road, Market Weighton, YO43 4NE 10

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Work

Redundancy – what is it? By Georgina Thomas

Redundancy is a legal term which applies when an employer needs less employees which can be because there is less work, or simply because the employer can’t afford to pay the existing workforce. Employees will obtain the right to redundancy after they are employed for over two full calendar years. This gives some rights: 1. There must be a need for less employees. 2. The right to a redundancy payment calculated partly on your age, and partly on length of service. 3. A fair procedure, which is split into a number of stages: Firstly, they must decide on the “pools” for selection. They do this by looking at where the need for less employees is, and who that affects, and deciding which employees should be included in the “pool” or group, from which they will select the actual redundancies. a) The employer should consult with the employees throughout. The first consultation should be on the actual need for the redundancies, and the proposals for pools and selection criteria, which should be fair and objective and not discriminatory. b) Once the employer has consulted with staff on the first stage, they will then go through and apply the scoring matrix to each person, and those who are potentially selected will be invited for individual consultation meetings, at which they can comment both on their own scores and also on the proposals in general if they wish. If the employee brings up something about the way they have been selected, the employer must consider this, and if necessary, re-score the employee. This may mean that

employee moves up out of potential redundancy selection and another employee moves down, and if so, that employee must be given their own consultation meeting. c) Once the employer has finished this first stage, the potential redundancy candidates will be chosen, and a second meeting should take place. At this meeting, the candidates can again bring up anything related to their own selection, and it is usual to also discuss any alternative jobs which may be available. d) Assuming there is no alternative, and nothing arises in the second meeting to change the selection, the employee is then given their contractual notice (which they can either serve out or may be paid in lieu), and at the end of their contract they will receive their redundancy pay and any other contractual payments. A failure to follow a fair process can result in an unfair dismissal and thus a potential claim in a Tribunal. However, employees should be warned that a declaration of unfair dismissal does not always come with large, or indeed, any compensation. If a Tribunal concludes that the errors were procedural only and that a genuine redundancy situation still existed, they will generally reduce compensation - this can be up to a 100% in some instances. In addition, employees must be aware that a Tribunal will not usually look into business merits for any decision made, but will merely examine whether the employer followed the fair process and was genuine. The importance, therefore, of getting it right procedurally is key – should you require advice on how to get it right and avoid claims, or if you have been on the receiving end of an employer getting it wrong, please email the team on enquiries@bridgeehr.co.uk or call us on 01904 360295.

Delve into a voyage of the imagination this festive season at Harewood

Upon a Christmas Wish created by Lord Whitney

Fri 13 Nov 2020 to Sun 3 Jan 2021 at Harewood House, Leeds

Registered charity in England no 517753

familiesonline.co.uk

Online booking essential harewood.org/christmas 11


Christmas

Best gifts for home

This Christmas is for most of us, set to be different in lots of ways, we are all likely to be spending more time at home, so we have teamed up with Upside Down Design, the beautiful interiors shop and design space located on Bootham, York to bring you a very stylish Christmas gift guide for the home.

Selection of Vases from £4.95 - £39.95

The luxurious ‘Elise’ Eiderdown is available in 9 colours and different sizes from £199

Stylish splatter range, from £7.95

We love these Udupi lamps! Perfect lighting for a cosy Christmas at home, available in two different sizes £110 and £159

Pretty Marco Polo glasses in a range of rainbow colours, £6.95 each

Velvet Monkey cushion in a range of colours £35.95

In store there is a range of candelsticks and rainbow of candles available. These brass candles are £25.95 each and candles £1.45

Oak lamp bases £195 and shades £64.95 - £78.95 12

Olive wood utensils and bowls. £4.99 - £19.95 familiesonline.co.uk


Christmas

Christmas

Our Guide to Finding Gifts for Those Loved Ones Who Seem to Have Everything Already! You know the problem; it happens every year. That one person who you leave until the very last minute to buy for because you can never come up with something unique and special for them which they don’t already have. Well, do not fear! Families North Yorkshire have found some distinctively delightful gifts for adults and kids this Christmas to help you out.

RaceInk These unique and personalised prints are the absolute perfect gift for the runner or cyclist in your life. There are a selection of sizes and colour of frames to choose from. If you prefer, you can also purchase a gift voucher so that it can be used in the future for an event or just simply cashed in on a previous achievement which your loved one chooses for themselves. Prices start at £25 for an A4 print. www.raceink.co.uk

The Little Gym

Pepper Pot Studios

Maybe you are a little tired of always giving a new toy. Why not get a voucher instead for the Little Gym so that they can enjoy a wonderful experience at a class, camp or party? Vouchers can be purchased for any value.

Beautifully modern illustrated maps of all your favourite places! You can even add your own location to a Pepperpot Studios map for an extra cost. Prices start from £12.50 for an A4 print. www.pepperpot-studios.co.uk

www.harrogate.thelittlegym.eu/ blog/2020/10/08/gift-an-experience-this-year1

Kikkerland Toys

Yorkshire Dog Marvin’s Photographer Treasured Beautiful photography for people Magic Tricks who love dogs just as much as owner Kathryn does. You can get that special person in your life a photoshoot with options to choose in the home or in the great outdoors, there’s something for all dog owners. A special time with just you, your dog and the family captured in timeless images to be treasured forever. Collections from £100. www.theyorkshiredogphotographer.com familiesonline.co.uk

Introducing a wonderful wooden magic set that is perfect for any budding magician. Presented in a durable wooden box for easy storage and includes the incredible escaping coloured blocks, the vanishing rabbit illusion, the amazing rising cards and much much more! £25 from Marvin’s Magic www.marvinsmagic.com

Huckleberry Fishing Kit This fish-shaped holder is equipped with fishing line (250in/635cm), floater (1g/0.04oz) weight and hook. CAUTION: Sharp Hook! £8.99 from Standfords www.stanfords.co.uk 3D Wooden Puzzle T-Rex Have a roarsomely challenging time being creative with this great wooden puzzle. £9.99 from Trouva www.trouva.com Make your Own Ukelele Say ‘Aloha’ to your very own Ukelele! This DIY kit contains all the pieces for your instrument and features smooth, unfinished wood to paint and decorate as you like! £29.99 from Waterstones www.waterstones.com 13


Christmas

Treasures of Wetherby Gift Guide

This year has been a year like no other with, so much uncertainty in our daily lives the certainty that Christmas will happen is comforting so with the excitement of our favourite time of the year, we have started our planning early! Our customers have started early too, and it seems there is a determination to make this an extra special Christmas this year. The local support we have received in recent months has been marvellous, many customers have told us that this year more than ever they want to share their gift buying between what is on their doorstep and on-line businesses. To ensure we meet all guidance addressing covid-19, we have made Treasures, more spacious than ever, keeping all our ranges and adding some new ones! Your feedback has been great. It is really encouraging to see

Family Games – The Genius Square 6+ - £16.99

Really hard to just choose one as we have added so many fantastic games however, our most requested game this year is “The Genius Square” from The Happy Puzzle Company. It has won many awards and is suitable from 6 years. We also have the “The Genius Star” launched in May, reviews are great here too.

how we all adapt to changes so quickly, customers automatically use our hand sanitisers and are patient while others finish their shopping. We are offering shopping appointments outside of our normal hours too, so if you would like to have Treasures to yourself just get in touch to book your appointment. Many of us have found more time to play and have rediscovered forgotten toys, family board games are a more regular feature and puzzles have never been so popular. “Ticket to Ride” has been the favourite board game in my home and even my teenagers have dusted off some Lego sets. We have some fantastic new toys to choose from at Treasures and our autumn catalogue is packed with great offers. Here are some of our favourite picks –

Cocomelon Big Yellow Musical Bus 2 + - £19.99

Cocomelon has been a big success on YouTube and when we reopened following lockdown it was our most Djeco Craft requested pre-school toy; this little boy is Paper Toys 6+ - £5.99 much loved and I suspect the toy range Another fantastic range with plenty will be a big success this Christmas. of appeal, Dinosaurs are always a favourite and at £5.99 what a great stocking filler. The animals have that cute Disney look and can be enjoyed while making and again admiring when decorating a desk or bookshelf.

Playmobil T-Rex Attack 4+ - £19.99

Dinosaurs are always popular and this set has been selling very well.

New Super Mario Lego Starter Set 6+ - £49.99

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Lego and Super Mario combined is impressive. You need to begin with the starter set which includes the Lego Mario figure, he has lots of features and expressive responses from his eyes, mouth, and l.e.d screen on his belly. Play the game going through adventures with Mario collecting coins on the way. We have a range of set additions available too. Expect to find this on the top of many Christmas lists and one I predict parents will enjoy too.

Barbie Cake Decorating Playset 4+ – £19.99

Brio World Farm Railway Set 3+ - £39.99 Classic wooden toy train set, one you are likely to keep passing on and guaranteed to provide many hours of fun play time. Plenty of additions available too, making it easy for grandparents to find a new train to add to this lovely set.

Barbie continues to be a much-loved doll and we have had plenty of great new additions. The Career Dolls and Barbie Princess Adventure are a hit and are expected to be Christmas favourites. We also have some great accessories to add to your Barbie, perfect for stocking fillers from £6.99. familiesonline.co.uk


Christmas

Where’s Santa? Well, 2020 has not been the year any of us expected and I’m certain Christmas is going to be a bit different to how it is usually for most of us. With that in mind, I wanted to try to keep Christmas as ‘normal’ as possible and so here is our Families North Yorkshire round up of where you can see Santa this year. #happychristmas #familyfun

Stockeld Park

Harewood House

Lotherton’s Christmas Experience This is one of our absolute favourite places to visit and Christmas time is always magical at Lotherton. Steeped in traditional Christmas magic and excitement, Lotherton is pleased to host the Christmas Experience once again this year for families to enjoy a safe and festive trip out! Enjoy the interactive 12 Days of Christmas Woodland Walk through Captains wood. Sing along and count the dancing ladies, calling birds and drummers drumming as you wander through. Discover the fairies in their secret hideaway Fairy Dell and marvel in the splendour of the Edwardian House with the rooms dressed in all their festive finery. Last, but certainly not least, visit Santa ‘Under the Wishing Tree’ in the Elf Village and interact with the elves and meet Santa in person. Book your day out now at: www. thechristmasexperience.co.uk

Piglets Every day from 21 Nov – 24 Dec jump aboard the Magical Sleigh Ride to Santa’s Woodland Village for a truly unforgettable Christmas experience with NEW activities for this year! Your Christmas experience will be a little different to normal. Changes include reduced visitor numbers and individual families will meet Santa in his grotto. www. pigletsadventurefarm.com/event/ magical-sleigh-rides

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Upon a Christmas Wish…delve into a voyage of the imagination this festive season, as Harewood recounts a Christmas tale and the House reveals its magic to all those in need of whimsical wonder. Never predictable or ordinary, join us in escaping into an immersive Christmas story across the State Floor and Below Stairs. Walk through beautifully decorated festive rooms, guided by the House itself, to relive the story of that magical night. With theatrical Christmas sets, starlit rooms, shadows dancing on the walls, moving set-pieces, poetic narration and a cinematic soundtrack, this Christmas at Harewood is not to be missed. Make their Christmas magical with a private twilight visit to Father Christmas from 11 Dec to 23 Dec 5pm – 8pm. This year he’s taken up residence in the historic old library where twinkling lights, rich decoration and the smells of trees for a truly authentic experience a world away from the bustle of Christmas. Book your day out at: www.harewood.org/whats-on/ christmas-at-harewood-2020

North Yorkshire Moors Railway Join the NYMR this December and help them save Christmas. Meet Santa’s helpers and travel on a heritage steam train in your own private compartment, whilst listening to Jingle Bells FM radio. Celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with your family as you travel to Levisham Station, return. www.nymr.co.uk/Event/santareimagined

Join them for some festive fun with various events and watch the Enchanted Forest come alive after dusk with our famous winter illuminations! www.stockeldpark. co.uk/events/season/christmas

Lightwater Valley The park will be bursting at the seams with holiday spirit, packed full of family entertainment and seasonal fun. Discover our Festive Fairground with its twinkling lights and traditional rides, hunt around the park to find Santa’s mischievous missing elves, before taking a journey through the magical Workshop of Wonders. www.lightwatervalley.co.uk/events/ christmas-at-lightwater-valley

Yorkshire Wildlife Park Brand new in 2020! Explore a magical and immersive festival of light this winter with this notto-be-missed event which will be the biggest lantern display in Yorkshire this year! Don’t Delay; tickets ON SALE NOW! www. yorkshirewildlifepark.com/events/ winter-illuminations

Castle Howard 28 Nov – 31 Dec join them for something truly magical in the Gardens of Castle Howard this winter. Come and experience a magical storytelling event in the historic Courtyard of Castle Howard. Meet Santa’s helpers as they guide you through into our festive library, where children will get to meet Santa, make their Christmas wishes and settle down to hear a brand new, enchanted winter’s tale ‘The Snowflake’ by popular children’s author Benji Davies. www. castlehoward.co.uk/whats-on/ christmas

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