Page 1


South West Jan/Feb 2017

FREE local activities Reflexology for crying babies Choosing a Nursery Half term activities SEN & baby activities




Calling all baby Scientists!

0844 879 7189 www.likeminders.co.uk


Help us discover how babies learn! Calling all infants from birth to 18 months to take part in fun studies at the Birkbeck Babylab in central London. We provide a black cab if you live within 5 miles of Birkbeck, or we refund any travel expenses. 020 7631 6258 babylab@bbk.ac.uk www.cbcd.bbk.ac.uk

Contents Did you


You can now enter your own listings FOR FREE on Familiesonline.co.uk Once a week we pick events at random, which get pushed via our weekly ‘What’s On this week’ newsletter and on social media. Don't miss out!

Families®SW|Issue 263 WEBSITE: www.familiesonline.co.uk TEL: 020 8696 9680 EDITORIAL: editor@familiesSW.co.uk


Local news


New Year New You Learn to dance, sort out your life, your health and your finances!


TRAVEL FEATURE Let’s go skiing!


Our Top Five Activities in January and February

10-19 EDUCATION FEATURE Open days Your local school news Education news 18-24 CLUBS AND CLASSES FEATURE Your local clubs and classes news Why art needs to be valued in schools 25

MONEY: The best books to help children learn about it

ADVERTS/ARTWORK: adverts@familiesSW.co.uk


REFLEXOLOGY for soothing crying and colicky babies

EVENTS, DIARY DATES, WHAT’S ON: whatson@familiesSW.co.uk


RELATIONSHIPS: Six ways to keep things strong

NEXT ISSUE: March 2017


Interview with Voucher Local


FREE activities

NEWS: news@familiesSW.co.uk

DEADLINE: Early Feb 2017 ISSN 1354-9553 | All content ©Families SW 2017

34-35 February half term activities listing • ‘Families SW’ London, established in 1990, is part of Families Magazines Ltd, a franchise company. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under licence. Families® is a registered trademark of Families Magazines Ltd, Remenham House, Regatta Place, Marlow Road, Bourne End, Bucks, SL8 5TD. • Printed by Ridgeway Press Ltd, Wiltshire • Designed by Shirley Trimmer • We take every care preparing this magazine, but the publishers and distributors cannot be held responsible for the claims of advertisers nor for the accuracy of the contents nor for any consequence. • Paper used to print Families is from fully-managed sustainable sources.

36-50 OUR ANNUAL NURSERY FEATURE Developing Resilience in girls starts with Nursery. Montessori education an antidote for technology. Pre schools: your need to know guide. Your local nursery news. 51-55 What’s On Diary dates Events Babies and toddlers Theatre Museums & Exhibitions Special Needs

ADVERTISE IN OUR NEXT ISSUE Contact us on 020 8696 9680

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Find us on Facebook and Twitter FamiliesSW


NEWS TASTY MISFITS We came across Tasty Misfits at a Christmas fair, what a brilliant idea for us to promote. This new social enterprise recently launched in south London, their aim is to fight food waste by reclaiming misshapen and surplus fruits and vegetables from farms and markets. They buy produce that does not meet supermarket’s strict cosmetic specifications and deliver them directly to customers’ homes through a weekly subscription priced lower than similar veg box schemes. New customers can get a grand 40% off the first box with the promo code HELLO40. www.tastymisfits.com

Charlotte and Louise offer tailored parental advice and support

THE CHARLOTTE & LOUISE BIG SLEEP EVENT Do you have sleep issues? Then why not attend this totally unique sleep event on 4th February 10-11.30am. It is brought to you by qualified specialists and guest speakers to improve sleep for both you and your baby. Organised and run by childcare consultants Charlotte & Louise, qualified Norland nannies with over 16 years of combined experience, this event encompasses everything that can impact upon the sleep of your baby. Guest speakers include: Pilar Manzanaro (Nutritional Therapist), Lulu Becker (specialist Women’s Health and Paediatric Physiotherapist) and Beth Graham (midwife and a lactation expert). There will be an opportunity to ask the experts any questions you may have. Putney Studio and Community Hall, 5-7 Disraeli Road, Putney, Wandsworth, SW15 2DR www.charlotteandlouise.co.uk 07814 872419

Buy your tickets now for Get Into London Theatre 2017 from only £10! Theatres all across the capital are set to welcome in the New Year with one of the industry’s longest running audience development initiatives, offering tickets for shows from £10, £20, £30 and £40. There are more than 40 participating shows ranging from plays and musicals to ballet and opera, including Disney's The Lion King, Matilda The Musical, Roald Dahl's Fantastic Mr Fox Get Into London Theatre is running until 10 February and Wicked.

© Matt Crocket


WORK WITH FAMILIES ONLINE Are you looking for super flexible, home-based work? Families Online is a hyper local website, offering super local information and family friendly events, searchable within a radius of where you live. We are looking for two key Area Managers to run our local sites in the Lambeth and Westminster areas. You should be knowledgeable about what's on locally, be online savvy and a regular user of Facebook and Twitter. Responsibilities include posting daily online and on social media with great ideas for your readers, populating and updating your site with useful and timely local content for families. You will be able to develop valuable new skills in the digital, print and social media marketing industry. No set up costs involved, full training provided on a self-employed basis. To register your interest, please email editor@FamiliesSW.co.uk


BEDTIME READING WITH A MESSAGE We love the Safari Series Children's books by Earlsfield author and mum, Clare Luther. They are slowly being used not only as a bedtime story, but as a resource in primary schools for PSHE and Character Education. Each set has three brightly illustrated books by Maria Floyd in a self-contained case, written in humorous rhyme with thoughtful moral and factual content. For children preschool to 7 years old. £14.95. Available at the Five Six Seven giftshop, 567 Garratt Lane, SW18 4SR.

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Tony Bradman with young fans at STREAM 2016

NEW MINI STREAM BOOK FESTIVAL Now in its third year, STREAM South London Book Festival for Children is organized by Streatham and Clapham High School. In November the festival welcomed back its patron Malorie Blackman, who talked about how she came to appreciate and engage with Shakespeare’s work by attending live performances. Judith Kerr delighted with her warm wit and charm in an interview with Sunday Times Children’s Book Editor, Nicolette Jones. Elsewhere audiences sang and danced at the Winniethe-Pooh 90th birthday celebration, learnt to draw Odd Dog Out with illustrator Rob Biddulph, joined in reciting Shakespeare with author Marcia Williams, made an octopus with Pass it On! author Sophy Henn and much more. With terrific feedback from audiences, the planning for STREAM2017 will begin shortly. There are also plans for Streatham & Clapham Prep to hold a smaller event, a Mini-STREAM for the very youngest of readers, in Spring 2017. www.schs.gdst.net/3353/stream-2016

‘LIMIT YOUNG CHILDREN’S SCREEN TIME’ A top UK child psychiatrist is supporting new guidelines recommended by US experts to limit screen time for children under five to an hour a day. Child and adolescent psychiatrist Dr Hayley van Zwanenberg, clinical director of the Priory’s Wellbeing Clinics and medical director of the Dr van Zwanenberg says NO screen time for Priory’s Woodbourne under twos Hospital in Birmingham, says that children under five should spend no more than an hour a day in front of television or computer screens - and infants under two should not view them at all. In a stark message about the growing risks of digital technology, the US doctors have halved their previous recommended limit of two hours a day of screen time for children aged over two after reviewing new evidence. The respected American Academy of Paediatrics said research showed that too much use of iPhones, iPads, laptops and television was damaging children’s sleep, fitness levels and ability to socialise with others.

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Do you dread the return of the lice with the new term? Hours of combing and never-ending treatments? “Super lice” are very difficult to eliminate and have developed resistance to pesticides. Lice infestation can be solved with Lice Clinics of the UK, in the comfort of your home, through a non-toxic professional treatment. And results are guaranteed!The revolutionary FDA-cleared medical device has been clinically shown to kill head lice AND eggs by dehydration through a safe, fast and highly effective, one-off treatment. “Sabine of Lice Clinics UK made a same day house visit. The treatment was gentle and very effective, giving complete peace of mind that no eggs were left undiscovered. Highly professional, friendly service! Highly recommended.” Anna, Chelsea In-school services also available. 07908 539 002 www.liceclinicsofuk.com

RAVENSCOURT PARK SCOOPS TOP CULTURE SPOT Ravenscourt Park in Hammersmith has been awarded the winner in Local Culture, Hammermith in the Time Out Love London awards, which celebrate the hottest haunts and coolest corners of the city. ‘We’re delighted that our fabulous Ravenscourt Park has been voted the worthy winner for culture in Hammersmith,’ said Cllr Wesley Harcourt. ‘This award is testament to the hard work our staff and the Friends of Ravenscourt Park put in and we are determined to be the greenest borough in the country.’ www.timeout.com/london/blog/love-london-awards-2016



We were thrilled to hear “Families South West” came first of all magazines mums read locally. When asked what magazine do you read, local mums told Kate Wilson of Hello Mums that “Families” is their favourite! Thank you. After 26 years publishing we are not exactly surprised but of course it’s always a thrill to hear. See the report The Cost of Childcare, 2016 on Hello Mums website: www.hellomums.co.uk/blog/london-parents-and-childcare-report-2016

FRIENDLY DISTRIBUTORS WANTED Do you enjoy reading Families? We are looking for people who would be kind enough to take batches of copies to places where they go anyway, like maybe a One o-clock club, playgroup or nursery. Pocket money offered as a thank you. We distribute in over 900 places in the SW postcodes but there are sometimes places that can’t take our copies, maybe because there is no facility to display them, could you hand a few copies outside the gates? It would really help us to reach a maximum number of people. Drop me an email editor@FamiliesSW.co.uk or text me on 07949 889901.



Six yoga classes for the price of five!

BABY BODY TO BALLET BODY You are never too late to start, nor too old to return to dancing. Dancing rejuvenates mind and body and is for absolutely everyone. Whether you desire to strengthen and lengthen with Ballet, tap yourself toned or re-connect your core in a Contemporary class, Inspire Ballet and Dance has something fun to escape to. You do not have to look or move like a dancer. All body sizes and levels are welcome, men and women. With a contagious energy and enthusiasm, Samantha Melville-Smith, Founder of Inspire, is a professional teacher and ballerina. She ensures every class delivers expert tuition in a truly enjoyable environment. Classes are held in a beautiful dance studio in the heart of Balham with day time and evening class options available. You can choose between traditional Ballet, Ballet Barre & Core, Contemporary Dance or Tap. All trial classes are just £2. Enchanting classes for children also available, please see website or contact Samantha for more details. The Studio, Balham Baptist Church, 21 Ramsden Road, SW12-8QX 07919 523 962 samantha@inspireballetdance.co.uk www.inspireballetdance.co.uk

TACKLE THE ROOTS OF YOUR DEPRESSION Depression can touch anyone. It wipes away all optimism from life and leaves you feeling empty, in pain and seemingly helpless. But would it help you to see it from a different angle? What if depression could be a friend in disguise, coming to whisper in your ear that certain things in your life are not working and are making you deeply unhappy. We have an incredible capacity to ignore difficult or even abusive situations, which means we lose sight of our inner strength and resources which would help us cope with them. This can lead to depression. However, our lives are meant to be satisfying and make us happy. Depression is our subconscious way of saying STOP! I want my life to be more than this − it's time to do something. Defeating depression for a future full of happiness, serenity and hope is possible. Listen to a free video here to find out how: www.new-gen-therapies.com/bcd1


DISCOVER YOGA THIS NEW YEAR! Yoga helps to build strength, increase flexibility and reduce stress. Regular practice develops awareness and concentration and promotes general well-being. This New Year, discover yoga and how it can benefit you. IY Yoga in Tooting has an extensive timetable of 18 weekly classes to suit all abilities, including short courses for absolute beginners and weekly pregnancy yoga classes. Established in 2005, the fully equipped studio is dedicated to the practice of Iyengar Yoga. All of our teachers are fully qualified Iyengar Yoga teachers, undergoing a minimum of 2 years’ training. The Iyengar method has a step-by-step approach for introducing new students to poses, so you can learn the correct movements. With emphasis on alignment, the use of props and the teachers' ability to tailor poses to individual's needs, yoga can provide therapeutic benefits to tight, unstable or injured areas. Come and try a class, where a warm welcome awaits you. SPECIAL OFFER - Quote: FSW Magazine and receive a 6-class Yoga

Card for the price of 5! Offer ends 10/02/17 For full details of classes visit: www.iyyoga.com enquiries@iyyoga.com

AIM FOR BETTER OVERALL HEALTH I don’t think I’ve ever met someone who doesn’t want to be healthier, fitter or leaner than they are at the moment. Especially in January! Did you ever think about Osteopathy as part of that picture? As an osteopath, my aim is to help you (or your child) to better health overall, and not just to deal with any symptoms, though of course these are important. The interesting question for me is why the problem developed in the first place, as this often holds the key to a lasting solution. Our bodies are always trying to heal themselves— my job is to help that process along. Having my clinic at home gives me the freedom to run my practice for the benefit of my patients, in a quiet and comfortable space. It seems to suit babies and adults alike. Health is so much more than an absence of pain. I aim to connect you with your health. 020 7993 8116 juliafinlayosteopath@gmail.com www.claphamfamilyosteopath.co.uk

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk




My name is Laure, and I want to help tick things off your wish list for the year.

If you’re considering osteopathy for your child’s health, be sure you’re consulting the best. The Osteopathic Centre for Children should be top of your list: a specialist teaching clinic, with 25 years’ experience, skills and knowledge in treating children.

There was a time when, at the beginning of January, I would make a list of things I wished for in the new year. By the end of each year, some of them would be ticked off, but others would remain undone. Thanks to the work I did with my coach one year, all aspects of my life changed: from family matters to job situation, I became a new person full of hope, excitement and motivation. I am also happier than ever, understand myself, communicate better with others, and have better relationships with my family, myself and others.

The highly-trained consulting team uses gentle yet effective physical techniques to promote, maintain and restore wellbeing. In the last year the charity provided more than 16,000 treatment sessions for children from birth to 18, or to women in the perinatal period. Book an appointment today: 020 8875 5290 www.occ.uk.com “What I like about the consultants at the OCC is that they don’t give me a hard time if we do decide to go down that [NHS drugtreatment] route but support my family in what to do next. Having seen the effect of the osteopathic treatment on my family, the OCC will always be my first port of call for my children’s health. We think it is absolutely brilliant.” Georgia, OCC parent

Now I create these changes in others, specially family matters. If you want to see some of these changes happen in your life, just drop me a line to the email below and we will arrange Laure can help make your wishes come true a free session to get know each other and see what we could do together. Laure Polidori, the family life coach Laurepolidori.com laure.polidori@gmail.com

The Osteopathic Centre for Children is a charity

NEW YEAR NEW PELVIC FLOOR New resolution? Why not commit to give your Pelvic floor the fitness it deserves? Reasons to restore and control your pelvic floor: • One in three women experience bladder leakage, often after having children. Do you feel embarrassed when you cough, burst into laughing or during a body-shape workout class? Your pelvic floor plays a key role in bladder and bowel control. Don’t put up with it… • Prevent and improve mild organ prolapse. • Improve sexual function and satisfaction for you AND your partner. • Improve core strength and stability, in coordination with the deep abdominals and diaphragm. If your new year resolution is back to shape, don’t forget that crunches may overload the pelvic floor. Need help to be proactive? Women’s health physiotherapists have extensive training in assessment and treatment of the Pelvic floor. Christine Julien-Laferrière, Pelvic health physiotherapist for women, men and children www.Physio4all.com 40 Webbs Road London SW11 6SF battersea@physio4all.com 020 72282141

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

SAVE ON SANITARY PRODUCTS The reusable menstrual cup is a small piece of genius. Made from soft, medical-grade silicone, it is so comfortable you can’t feel it’s there. While tampons absorb 35% of vaginal moisture, the Mooncup won’t dry you out or leave fibres behind. Because it can hold three times more than a regular tampon, it gives you longer lasting protection on heavier days. The Mooncup saves the planet, saves you from carrying bulky spares and of course it will save you money. The Mooncup is latex-free, hypoallergenic and contains no dyes, perfumes, BPA, phthalates, plastic, bleaches or toxins. The Mooncup is ideal if you have sensitive skin or allergies. “It does take a bit of practice folding the mooncup to insert comfortably, but once it’s in there you can’t feel it. No more irritation from tampon threads, no more tampons in the environment, no more worrying whether I’ve packed enough tampons in my bag. No leaking while it’s in so for up to 8 hours I wouldn’t even know I was having a period. Fantastic product; go for it girls!” Widely available in chemists. www.mooncup.co.uk




Family holidays go 3G Holidays used to be all about parents and kids together— a time to recharge and reconnect. However, three-generational holidays with grandparents, parents and children in tow are growing in popularity, with ‘3G’ the new buzzword in the travel industry. Holiday company Mark Warner reported a 12% rise in popularity in ‘3G getaways’ in the last five years, while a new poll by Owners Direct, a holiday rental company, says that 20% of us are regularly holidaying with our own parents and children together. Of course, there is much to rave about when it comes to 3G holidays: it’s a fab way to spend time together on neutral territory, without the daily distractions of work and school routines. A successful holiday with three generations of family together requires a destination to suit everyone’s needs, with plenty of places to explore, adventures on the doorstep and a healthy dose of comfort thrown into the mix.

TIPS FOR 3G HOLIDAYS • Plan ahead: If you have children at school, you will need to plan well in advance to find a week that works for everyone. Organising a 3G holiday six to nine months in advance means that everyone can lock it into their diaries and you will have a good choice of options.

• Plan your routine: It can be a challenge to get everyone up and out in time for something, so every evening, make sure you have a plan for the following day. Do not try to cram too much in – one activity or outing per day tends to be enough.

• Pick a place for all: Not all holiday destinations were created equal, so put extra time into planning and research so you choose somewhere that everyone will enjoy. Self-catering tends to be a more affordable alternative to hotel breaks, with the added bonus of being able to eat in or out, while going to a hotel means there are no chores, no shopping nor cleaning and everyone can enjoy some privacy.

• Make the most of group discounts: When it comes to days out and visits to attractions, always ask if you are eligible for any discounts or special offers. It never hurts to ask!

• Set boundaries: Always keep the lines of communication clear and iron out any sticky issues before heading off. Just because the grandparents are in tow, doesn’t automatically make them babysitters. If you would like a night out, double-check with grandparents that they are happy to look after the little ones.

• Be mindful of others: Think about everyone when choosing activities. Small children will need plenty of time to rest and will always get hungry at inconvenient times and older folk might also welcome some afternoon down-time! • Make memories: Most of all relax and enjoy your holiday together and enjoy trying new activities and spending time together. Your shared experiences will be stories you talk about for a long time afterwards!

Georgina Rodgers is a journalist and author of Peace of Mind: A Book Of Calm for Busy Mums, available now.




At 22 Northbourne Road, Clapham, SW4 7DJ All enquiries: Libby de Rougemont: 0207 7204871 / 07939051220 libbyderouge@hotmail.co.uk www.skiderouge.com


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


What about a family skiing holiday this year? We all know that the slopes are very different with a family in tow. Follow these simple tips for a family holiday to remember. CHOOSING THE RIGHT FAMILY-FRIENDLY LOCATION


You’ll need to choose your resort and accommodation carefully if you want a family holiday you can all enjoy. Think about proximity of chalets and hotels to the lifts, nursery slopes, ski school or crèche. Many resorts offer complimentary shuttle-buses to get you to the slopes and it’s worth finding out how close these stop to your accommodation. Ski-to-door facilities allow you the luxury of finishing your day’s skiing right at the doorstep of your chalet or hotel. After a long day on the slopes, this is often a god-send. Don’t forget you’ll not only have your own skis and boots to carry, but those of the kids.

If you've got a baby or toddler you need to be careful to ensure that there are sufficient childcare facilities within the resort you choose. Lots of resorts have crèche facilities, but check beforehand that they use Englishspeaking carers. Other options include holidaying with other families to split the childcare duties, allowing everyone some care-free days on the slopes, or taking along another non-skiing family member who’s happy to come for the après ski alone!

Some resorts such as Meribel, La Tania, Tignes, Les Arcs and Les Gets are renowned for their beginner suitability, offering free beginner lifts or ‘magic carpets’ lifts, ski gardens and ski-crèche facilities for younger children.

MAKING SURE THE SKI LESSONS ARE HIGH QUALITY Ski lessons are essential to ensure that your little ones get a positive first experience on the slopes. Children from the age of 4 or 5 years can learn to ski, and will benefit from a low-pressure atmosphere in which to learn, and an extensive network of easy, well-kept slopes to help make progress quick and easy. A good instructor will teach the correct technique from the outset and provide the motivation for even young children to improve at their own pace, so that learning to ski is fun all the way!

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

PACKAGE HOLIDAYS DELIVER PEACE OF MIND If you want an easy time both in-resort and when preparing beforehand, you may want to choose to travel with a ski tour operator. Travelling with an ATOL and ABTA bonded operator such as Alpine Elements offers many benefits for families. Tour operators offer package holidays including flights, transfers, accommodation and catering, meaning that you can sit back and relax, knowing that your holiday is in safe hands. As well as being able to leave all the cooking and cleaning to your host, your operator will assist with any issues which may arise, and ensure that they are resolved immediately. You can also take advantage of the onsite Kids' Clubs which are supplied at larger properties. Ski holidays with Alpine Elements start from only £399pp (incl. 7nts catered accommodation, flights & transfers), plus SAVE 5% using code ‘FAMILIESSW17’. For more information visit www.alpineelements.co.uk/familiesSW or call 020 3468 4601.




FAMILIES TOP FIVE... With the Christmas holidays behind us, February half term is just around the corner. Here are our top picks of forthcoming activities for you and your family to enjoy.

GET COSY AND CRAFTY WITH HYGGE Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX www.southbankcentre.co.uk 14 January

Drop into Southbank's Hygge Zone and join in with friends, family and strangers to try some new things. Knitting, LEGO, flower crown crafting and a storytelling corner are all part of the fun. All ages, 11.30am4.30pm. We love the Southbank Centre’s wild and wacky workshops, and this one looks even wilder and wackier!

HALF TERM PLAY: THE MUSEUM GAME V&A Museum of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Road E2 9PA www.museumofchildhood.org.uk 13-17 February

Experience the Museum like a giant board game. A series of workshops and activities inviting you to view the Museum’s collection and building playfully and differently. 11am-4pm, drop-in, all ages. The Museum of Childhood’s holiday activities are famous for keeping children entertained and stimulated, so don’t miss out on these ones!

GET INTO DESIGN COURSE Design Museum, 224-238 Kensington High Street W8 6AG www.designmuseum.org 13-15 February

SIR JOHN SOANE’S MUSEUM 13 Lincoln's Inn Fields WC2A 3PB www.soane.org Tucked away in Lincoln's Inn Fields at the heart of London, this magical, mysterious museum is a firm favourite of Families. Young visitors can explore Soane's treasures and develop new skills with specialist guidance. Sir John Soane (1753- 1737) was an inveterate collector, filling every nook and cranny of his beautiful home with items that fascinated him. From fossils to classical fragments from Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome and from contemporary paintings to architectural models, drawings and literature, he intended that after his death both his house and its extraordinary contents should be used to educate and inspire. Free drop-in activities run on the third Saturday of every month, with activities for all ages and families can take part together from 1.30-4.40pm.

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

An opportunity for enthusiastic young designers to develop skills and confidence in design, and to explore new ideas in a safe environment. Designers in Residence Rain Wu and Clementine Blakemore lead this course exploring architecture and participants will learn about the importance of designing with social need in mind. 10.30am-4pm, £150 per person, age 12–16 years. We think this is a real chance to explore this exciting new museum and there are bound to be more of these in the future.

VICTORIAN STREET GAMES Foundling Museum 40 Brunswick Square WC1N 1AZ, www.foundlingmuseum.org.uk 14 February

Go on an adventure inspired by Victorian street games in this free family workshop. Learn about the outdoor games that children played in the nineteenth century and make your own game to take home. Age 5+, 10.30am-3.30pm. A great way to spend your half term, we think.






Call to book your place now

Parsons Green School

Compiled by Joanna Parry






4-13 Co-Ed Tours every weekday morning in term time, 8.30am booking required 020 7584 1331 www.hillhouseschool.co.uk

3-11 Girls 3-8 Boys Tours Tuesdays and Thursdays during term time 9.30am booking required 020 7352 9247 www.redcliffeschool.com

4-18 Girls Senior School Open Morning 10/3 9.15-11.30am



2.5-11 Co-Ed Spring Open Day 25/2 9.30am-12pm 020 7350 2461 www.parkgate-school.co.uk


BONNEVILLE PRIMARY SCHOOL 4-11 Co-Ed Open Days 10/1 and 12/1 9.30am 020 8673 1183 www.bonneville-primary.lambeth.sch.uk

SW6 FULHAM PREP SCHOOL 4-13 Co-Ed Pre-Prep Open Morning 23/2 and 23/3 9.15am, 10.15am and 11.15am call to book a place and time slot 7371 9911, Prep School tours by appointment only 020 7386 2444 www.fulhamprep.co.uk

PARSONS GREEN PREP 4-11 Co-Ed Midweek tours on Thursdays at 9am by appointment only 020 7371 9009 www.parsonsgreenprep.co.uk


4-11 Co-Ed Open Mornings most Thursdays 9.15-10.30am by appointment 020 7924 3472 www.dolphinschool.org.uk

ST JOHN PRIMARY SCHOOL Open morning 9.30am 10/1 020 7228 3857

www.johnburns.wandsworth.sch.uk THE DOMINIE 6-11 Co-Ed Tours by appointment Please contact the school to find out more about their specialist teaching for dyslexic children 020 7720 8783 www.thedominie.co.uk


020 8677 8400 www.schs.gdst.net

SW18 THE ROCHE SCHOOL 2.5-11 Co-Ed Open Mornings 20/1, 8/3 and 12/5 9.30-11am, or at other times by appointment 020 8877 0823 www.therocheschool.co.uk

SW19 OUR LADY QUEEN OF HEAVEN 4-11 Co-Ed Open Days 12/1 and 2/2 2pm 020 8788 7420 www.ourladyqueenofheaven.wandsworth.sch.uk



4-11 Girls Open Morning 11/3 9.30am-12pm, plus tours on Tuesdays 9.20-10.30am 020 8947 6969 thestudyprep.co.uk

11-16 Co-Ed Open Morning 7/3 and 25/4 020 7228 3933 www.thameschristiancollege.org.uk

4-13 Boys Tours of the school by appointment 020 8944 7020 www.willingtonschool.co.uk



WIMBLEDON COMMON PREP (also known as Squirrels) 4-7 Boys Open Morning 25/1 at 9.15am 020 8946 1001 online booking on website www.wimbledoncommonprep.co.uk

4-11 Co-Ed Tours every week, book in advance 020 7736 4045 www.langfordprimary.org.uk

4-11 Co-Ed Tours Tuesday mornings at 9.15am book in advance 020 8674 9514 www.whitehouseschool.com



4-11 Co-Ed Montessori Nursery Open Morning 24/3 10-11.30am, Prep School Open Morning 23/3 10-11.30am 020 7736 9182 www.sinclairhouseschool.co.uk

4-11 Co-Ed Weekly school tours by appointment every Tuesday at 11.50am 020 8772 3504 www.waldorflondon.co.uk


4-11 Co-Ed 9/3 and 8/6 9am 020 8673 7573 www.hornsbyhouse.co.uk



3-11yrs Co-ed Open Mornings 9.30-11am 26/1 & 8/3 020 8670 5865

4-18 Co-Ed Regular tours during term time 020 8762 6321 www.harrodian.com


THE HAMPSHIRE SCHOOL 3-13 Co-Ed Tours of main school on Wednesdays at 9am and of Early Years School on Mondays and Thursdays at 1.30pm 020 7352 7077 www.thehampshireschoolchelsea.co.uk

ST NICHOLAS PREP SCHOOL 2-10 Co-Ed Open Day 26/1 9.30am plus Open House every Wednesday and Thursday during term time 9.30-10.30am book in advance 020 7225 1277 www.stnicholasprep.co.uk

HYDE PARK SCHOOL 4-11 Co-Ed Pre-Prep and Prep Open Morning 1/3 020 7225 3131 www.hydeparkschool.co.uk


SW15 IBSTOCK PLACE SCHOOL 3-18 Co-Ed Pre-Prep and Prep Open Days 1/2 and 3/5 9.30am, Senior School Open Evening 10/5 5-7pm plus regular tours during term time booking required 020 8876 9991 / 020 8392 5803 ibstockplaceschool.co.uk


SW20 THE NORWEGIAN SCHOOL Co-Ed 4-16 Open Day 1/4 12-2pm, plus tours of the school can be booked at any time 020 8947 6617 www.norwegianschool.org.uk


www.rosemeadprepschool.org.uk SYDENHAM HIGH SCHOOL 4-18 Girls Open Morning 9.30am Junior 9/3 and Senior 10/3 020 8557 7004


W6 RAVENSCOURT PARK PREP SCHOOL 4-11 Co-Ed Open Morning 19/1, 2/2, 8/3 and 4/5 9.15am 020 8846 9153 www.rpps.co.uk


4-11 Co-Ed 10/1 at 9.15am 020 8788 3606 www.granardprimary.co.uk




4-11 Co-Ed Friday tours by appointment 9-10.30am 020 7720 4091 www.newtonprepschool.co.uk

4-11 Girls 18/3 10.30am-12.30pm 020 8992 5189 www.falconsgirls.co.uk

4-11 Co-Ed Open Mornings 17/1, 7/2 and 7/3 at 10am 020 8741 1400 www.parayhouse.com

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017



Children Learning to Succeed...

First Class Learning Barnes & Putney

Maths, English, 11+ Preparation Vicky Barnett BA, MSc, PGCE

020 8876 2553 www.firstclasslearning.co.uk


Reliable Handyman • Garden maintenance and building work (fences, patios, sheds, etc..) • Jobs around the house (carpentry, painting, fitting furniture, etc…) • Upcycling furniture and Shabby Chic items available

£30/hour. Call Brian: 0774 513 6424

EDUCATION NEWS £50 OFF A FEARLESS START TO THE YEAR A child’s educational journey goes beyond acing a quick spelling test or getting to the top of the class for a term. It is about building long-lasting confidence that takes them through their entire life, whether it is through developing a ‘have a go attitude’, or knowing it’s ok to put their hand up without fear of a ‘silly’ question being mocked, or simply feeling excited about their next step. It’s about nurturing a sense of pride, and a fearless attitude to learning, so that every child can become their version of amazing.


To celebrate the new year and all of the potential it brings, they are offering a little something to help your child along their fearless learner journey. From the 16th January until the 28th February, you’ll save £50 when you join any one of their maths and English tuition centres. Centres in Fulham, Wandsworth and Nine Elms (NEW). Enjoy a FREE trial first!

Plans are taking shape for Hammersmith and Fulham’s new disabled children’s centre, aiming to open in October 2017. Queen’s Manor Primary School will create a state-of-the art learning and play centre for disabled children, as well as rebuilding the school’s own support unit for pupils with special educational needs. ‘We’re working with parents, carers and school staff to create a centre for all disabled children in H&F and their families,’ said Councillor Sue Macmillan, Hammersmith and Fulham Cabinet Member for Children and Education. ‘We’re determined to improve the lives of disabled children and this £6million project is a big part of that commitment.’ The new centre will open throughout the week, evenings and weekends, designed as a hub for all children with disabilities as well as support for parents. Share your views by emailing QueensManorConsultation@lbhf.gov.uk. Queen Mary’s Primary School, Lysia Street SW6 6ND, 020 7385 4343



Explore Learning have incredible tutors that are there to support every step of

the way. Rather than a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’, they will ask: “are you sure?” or “can you convince me of your answer?”, allowing children to explore and push the boundaries of their thinking each day.

DOLPHIN SCHOOL IN TOP 50 PREP SCHOOLS Dolphin School was ranked 47th

in the Sunday Times table of results for Prep Schools. It is a tremendous accolade that the school was in the top 50 Preparatory Schools in the country. Mrs Nicola Baldwin, Principal: “Although we know that this is not the only measure of an excellent school, it is rewarding to know that on the academic front, as in our holistic development of our pupils, we are excelling.” This is really fantastic, so very well done! Dolphin School (incorporating Noah’s Ark Nursery Schools) 106 Northcote Road, SW11 6QW 020 7924 3472 www.dolphinschool.org.uk

PARSONS GREEN SCHOOL WINS AWARD Parsons Green Prep has won the prestigious ISA Award for Outstanding Provision in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths). The ISA judges commented, ‘Parsons Green Prep was chosen as the winning school due to their real life application method of teaching STEM which fosters lifelong interest in STEM subjects. One project incorporating these three key areas was their space project based upon the Tim Peake mission.’ What a fantastic achievement! Parsons Green Prep School, 1 Fulham Park Road SW6 4LJ.

020 7371 9009 www.parsonsgreenprep.co.uk

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Campaigners warn of school budget cuts

SCHOOL BUDGET CUTS? Government plans to cut schools’ budgets would remove £6m from Putney schools in a major change to funding. The proposed changes mean that schools in Putney will lose £5,994,867, or roughly 13% of their current budgets, over the next 4 years. Jeremy Ambache, Labour’s Education spokesperson and Cllr for Roehampton has attacked the plans, which would mean cuts equivalent to £740 per Putney pupil. ‘The Government plans are equivalent to losing 162 full time teacher posts and will have serious adverse consequences for the education of local children,’ he said. The schools likely to be worst hit include Ashcroft Technical Academy, Heathmere Primary School in Roehampton and Brandlehow Primary is SW15. To see how much your school’s budget will be cut visit www.schoolcuts.org.uk




THAMES CC ARE CROSS COUNTRY TEAM CHAMPS Well done to pupils of Battersea-based school Thames Christian College, who are doing exceptionally well this season in Cross Country. Jemima, Year 10, came 26th out of 111 runners at London Youth Games contributing to Gold for the Wandsworth Girls Under 17s team. The Junior team beat six other schools in the independent schools Cross Country competition held in Richmond Park, with individual pupils finishing in first, second, third, fifth and sixth place. In the Senior competition, Jemima won the girls’ race and broke the girls’ record in the process, contributing to her team coming second overall.

Exciting news from the White House School in Balham and congratulations! Headmaster Mr. Daniel Cummings told Families: "I am very excited to be able to announce that we were included in “The Sunday Times Top 100 UK Prep Schools”. We were listed at number 10 in London and number 54 for the UK. This is an excellent achievement and very pleasing to have the hard work of our students and staff recognised in a National publication. As important as National recognition can be, I would like to add that this has confirmed what I see throughout the school every day and I am very proud to be part of such a wonderful school." 24 Thornton Avenue, SW12 0LF 020 8674 9514 www.whitehouseschool.com

At their annual sponsored Cross Country, pupils completed an amazing total of 704 km, with sponsorship so far raising over £3,000 in aid of the charity Go MAD in Tanzania. This will help village girls get back into education and provide a science lab for Bunda Girls' School. For more information about Thames visit: www.thameschristiancollege.org.uk

PRIVATE SCHOOLS “TO OFFER 10,000 FREE PLACES” Private schools will offer to provide up to 10,000 free school places a year to children from low-income families in England. The Independent Schools Council (ISC) says if the government pays £5,550 per place – the cost of a place in the state system – the remainder of the cost will be covered by the schools. The ISC was responding to pressure from the government to do more for their state school counterparts in return for charitable status, which allows for tax breaks. The scheme, which would test some children on academic ability, would be open to primary and secondary school-age children.

PLANS FOR NEW YOUTH ZONE Plans are developing to transform Ark Swift Primary Academy in White City and nearby Harmony Nursery, including a brand new state-ofthe-art two-form entry primary school with improved play areas, as well as expanded facilities for the Ofsted-outstanding Harmony Neighbourhood Nursery, increasing its capacity from 46 places to 75. Plus, interestingly, plans also include a new OnSide Youth Zone offering affordable activities in sports, arts, music, employability and mentoring to young people aged 8 to 19, or up to 25 for those with a disability. Find out more at www.edcity.co.uk

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

PROFESSIONAL ONE TO ONE TUTORING Fleet Tutors has been matching the right tutor to the education needs of students across the UK since 1977. Their network of tutors are subject specialists who tailor the teaching and learning experience to relieve any subject specific anxieties and help build your child’s confidence so they achieve a successful outcome. For a helpful discussion about your requirements, speak to a knowledgeable tuition consultants on 0333 920 2545.

EASY AS PIE This is the maths-made-simple guide by Liz Strachan, ex-mathsteacher-turned-author. Quirkily illustrated by Steven Appleby this is the perfect book for established maths geeks, students and pupils of all ages and even flummoxed parents whose children’s homework makes them feel as if THEY should be the ones at school! This is a humorous yet informative book about maths: how to do it, tips and tricks, and why it actually can be quite fun. We like it! £10.99



CLUBS AND CLASSES A LOVELY CREATIVE SPACE The Bright Emporium is one of a kind space. It is striving to be the

hub of fun creative activity for the families and art enthusiasts. Utilising the relationship with their mother company The Bright Group, a children’s illustration agency, fans have direct access to some of their creative heroes and are able to buy signed books, limited edition prints and meet their favourite artists. Events include Story time every other Sunday morning where children can meet the illustrators and authors, regular weekend drama and craft children’s workshops, messy mornings for under 4 or under 8 (at only £2 per child) and much more including yoga and ballet classes. Go and have a look! 103-105 St John’s Hill SW11 1SY www.thebrightemporium.com

PLASTICINE AND PAINT IN WRITING LESSONS? A lot of Katherine Smith’s students say they are ‘bad at writing’, ‘can’t do it’ or ‘don’t know what to write’. They are also fed up with lists of things to include in creative writing: complex vocabulary, adverbials of time, place and manner, metaphors, similes, etc. To start stories, you need creative magic

Children’ eyes light up when they see paint or plasticine on the table in their writing lesson. It can come from anywhere: from a place you visited, from a rock you like the feel of, from the smell of damp leaves, from your dream last night. Some students find it easily, but many, when confronted with a blank page, don’t. She says: “ I’ve seen that once they’re inspired, children are happy to experiment with language: their writing improves. To start stories, you need some creative magic. We model plasticine characters and imagine what they are like – what do they want? Do they like broccoli? We paint / collage settings and ‘jump’ into them: what can we smell? Is it raining? We laugh about rotten egg smells, dog poo, floating people and giant trees.”

Once they have a place and a character then their imaginations take them into the story. They get excited; ideas flow easily: this is the creative process! The next step is to edit the story. They find any gaps in the plot, they discuss exciting similes and metaphors etc. But now they’re enthusiastic and involved— happy to do it because now they’re committed to their characters and to their ideas. It’s all from them, not from a list. Katherine of Paint Write Now is an Oxford graduate teaching in Wimbledon on Wednesdays 4.10pm-6pm and Saturdays 9.30am12.35pm. 07779 100 659 www.paintwritenow.co.uk

Festival of Funk returns! Book now

NEW ANIMATION COURSE Balham’s youngest filmmakers are set to take the animation world by storm as Sparks launch Move Over Pixar, a new animation course. Children from Sparks will be setting their sights on animation glory as they seek to give animation studios Pixar a run for their money. Already accomplished in the art of making movies, filmmakers will be focusing their attention on producing animated films, drawing on a series of specialist techniques and developing their creative skills along the way. Sessions are at Broomwood Hall School SW12 on Saturday afternoons for ages 7 and 19. Call 020 7101 9329, www.sparks-ignite.com Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

FUNKY MOVES SHAKE IT UP 2017 is set to mark a very important year for popular dance company Funky Moves as they shake things up with a re-brand and the return of

the Festival Of Funk on February 5. The afternoon will be full of non-stop dance activities, including break dancing superheroes, workshops and free disco dancing, arts and crafts, baby play areas, pop up photo booths, goodie bags and much, much more! With the focus last time being on the 10th anniversary of the company, this time around it’s all about the ‘new look’ of Funky Moves and their exciting plans ahead. Festival Of Funk, 5 February, 2 -5pm at The Bedford, Balham SW12 9HD. Tickets £8-£15, book in advance at www.funkymoves.com 21



Why art needs to be valued in schools By Jessica Ralph and Julie Norburn

Julie Norburn, Director of community arts organisation Art4Space says: ‘Again and again I find that creativity unlocks the mind, broadens horizons and makes it easier for children to fulfil their own potential.’ Art4space believes the arts have a social, cultural and economic value that cannot be overlooked. In a time where the creative curriculum is being squeezed from formal learning in primary schools, we need to be clear on the value of art in a child's learning and how it can transform lives.

ART PROMOTES WELLBEING Creating art gives children an outlet to express themselves, they draw from their personal experiences and skills and studies have shown that when children create art with their peers, the feedback they receive helps build self-respect. Through art children learn how to accept praise and process criticism. When working on a project, children can focus on the progress of their art, and when they have finished it, after hours of effort, they can take pride in it. Knowing it was them who made it, their skills and ideas, and seeing their creation fruited, boosts their confidence in their own ability, and knowing they are good at something, boosts self-esteem. Art4Space have a passion for arts education, and have seen time and time again children finding hope and inspiration through creativity. In response to this they have developed a unique accredited art course for 7-11 years, Why Art Matters, which takes a child centre and holistic approach to learning and discovery through art.

ART TEACHES LIFE SKILLS Creating art can teach children transferrable skills that can help them in the classroom and beyond. When making art, children must take risks - what colour to use, what to draw on the paper, what shape to make the clay, etc. This develops their sense of innovation and decision making, as they must choose which method of creating is most likely to help them meet the end goal of their project. Producing an artwork can sometimes be a bumpy road, and children will most likely face challenges throughout their project - the wrong colour used, something dropped, and running out of a material. When something goes not as planned, they must learn to adapt, be flexible and find a solution to the problem. They also learn to gain insight that things do go wrong, and learn to forward think and plan ahead if this happens. Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

ART BRINGS PEOPLE TOGETHER Art is an amazing leveller. In a society of so many different cultures, languages and ideals, art is a fantastic way to explore cultural differences and engage children into the wider world. In big projects, children often work in large groups. They must learn how to work in a team, and learn that everyone has different skills, knowledge and talents. Understanding this, utilizing it and learning from each other, teaches them tolerance and strengthens their sense of community with the people around them. Art4Space is a community Arts Organisation. They offer courses, workshops, training, parties and classes for adults and children. Art4Space Community Arts Centre, Studios, 31 Jeffreys Road, London SW4 6QU 020 8766 7163 www.art4space.co.uk 23



Books to help children learn about money Money makes the world go around, so teaching your children the subject is pretty important! Why not read a book with them to give you a helping hand with the subject matter? After all, teaching children finance can be difficult!

MASTER MONEY THE MILLIONAIRE By Allan Ahlberg Master Money is very, very rich! In fact this little boy is so rich that he even smells of money! By the age of four years old he’s managed to find buried treasure in his very own back garden! By the time he’s five, he’s found even more treasure in the sandpit at school – and by six he’s got his hands on more, yes more, at the beach! However, Mister Creep soon finds him…

IT’S NOT WHAT YOU’VE GOT! By Dr Wayne W. Dyer Part of a series of inspirational books for children, this one address the topic of money and abundance – linking it to children’s earliest thoughts and perceptions of money. This beautifully illustrated book presents concepts such as: money doesn’t have to define who you are, along with it doesn’t matter what other people have. Unlike many other books on the subject of money, this one doesn’t try to teach little ones how to spend and save, instead it provides a rather spiritual approach on the matter.

NOGGIN AND THE MONEY By Oliver Postgate The story of a friendly Viking, Olaf the Lofty who invents money – after all, it seems like a genius idea! However, it soon seems that money is actually more trouble than it’s worth. Packed full of beautiful illustrations this book is perfect for newly independent readers looking to learn about money.

WHAT IS MONEY? By Claire Llewellyn This book is great for answering kid’s questions about all things money. From how to tell the difference between different notes and coins to how to get money and what to do with it. There’s also lots of notes for teachers and parents too!

SHOW ME THE MONEY By Alvin Hall A treasure trove full of advice for parents and children from the finance guru Alvin Hall. This book introduces children to the concept of “money makes the world go around, only if you know how to use it”. Within minutes of reading this wonderful book your children will be entered into the crazy world of business and economics – learning everything from the history of money to how to use it.

THE STORY OF MONEY By Martin Jenkins A hilarious look on the subject of money; perfect for children ! This thought provoking tale explains that in some parts of the world money is a stone with a hole in it, a copper slab, or a string of shells. But one thing remains the same; money makes the world go around. And it doesn’t grow on trees! In this amazing book Jenkins looks at the history of money and how it came to be involved in the electronic banking which takes place today. If you want a little more help finding books for your children, visit www.familiesonline.co.uk/Bookclub

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017






Reflexology for soothing crying and colicky babies By Sally Earlam FMAR. BSc. PGCE, Association of Reflexologists – Maternity Specialist

Does your baby cry for long periods and does this leave you sometimes feeling helpless and upset? There might be something you can do at home that may just help. All babies cry, and some cry a lot, this can be distressing and on occasions frustrating for all concerned. Sometimes it is easy to work out why babies are crying e.g. hunger, dirty nappy, wind or they are tired - but sometimes there appears to be no apparent reason and nothing seems to soothe them. There may be certain times of the day when a baby may seem to cry a lot and can’t be comforted. Early evening is the most common time for this to happen and this can be hard as it’s often the time when parents and carers are most tired and least able to cope. Excessive crying in an otherwise healthy baby is traditionally called colic, which is relatively common in the first few months of a baby’s life. However, it is important that if a baby is crying for long periods, the parents or carers should mention this to a doctor or health visitor to rule out any health problems such as milk intolerance or allergies.

1. Connect with your baby – place the palms of your hands on the soles of the baby’s feet.

SIMPLE REFLEXOLOGY TO SOOTHE CRYING BABIES There are a few simple moves that you can try on your baby. Try and do these moves for 5 minutes every day when your baby is calm. Reflexology for baby uses massage strokes over areas of the feet and only requires a very gentle pressure. Lie the baby down either on a mat or on your knee and make this a fun time with lots of smiles—or nursery rhymes! Before you start, it is essential that you are feeling calm and relaxed yourself, as babies will pick up on any anxiety or stress you have. You will find that your baby may move their legs about in a playful manner and you can just work with this. However, if at any time your baby pulls their legs away and keeps them drawn up, this is them telling you that they don’t want reflexology at this time, so you should stop and try later.

3. Calming hold – place both thumbs gently in the centre of each foot and let them press against you. Rest there for about 10 seconds. This is great for calming

4. Calming the nervous system – gently stroke down on the inside of the foot from the big toe down to the heel. This relates to the spine reflex and is great for calming the nervous system.

6. Digestive reflex – work gentle clockwise circles with the thumb on the middle of foot (where they dip/arch). This area relates to the parts of the digestive system helpful in release of wind and gas. Repeat on the other foot.

7. Repeat the move over the heel area

2. Cradling –support both feet at the heels in the palms of your hands. Hold them loosely for about 10 seconds whilst you tell your baby how much you love them

5. Head reflex – slide upwards from the base of each toe up to the tip – work across all 10 toes

8. Repeat the calming hold (number 3)

For more information on reflexology, have a look at the Association of Reflexologists’ website at www.aor.org.uk. There are interactive hand and foot maps you can look at, plus YouTube videos on how to carry out hand reflexology and plenty more useful information on reflexology. If you want to see if you can benefit from a Reflexology treatment, there is a ‘Find a Reflexologist’ search, where you can put in your postcode to find a well-trained and insured reflexologist local to you.

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017



Six ways to sustain a strong relationship after having kids By Karen Dempsey

It’s so easy to put children first at the expense of your relationship. Here are some tips to help you grow stronger as a couple. Nothing quite prepares you for the impact children will have on you and your relationship. While your bundle of joy may complete your family and bring you so much happiness, there may be times when the demands of looking after your baby or toddler become overwhelming. No matter how strong your relationship was before the children came along, there may be moments when the strength of your relationship is tested.

When you’re up to your knees in nappies and soft toys, or juggling the school run with work and social activities, your relationship can start to get lost. You may find it hard to balance the various needs of family life, and you may feel as though there are times when you lose your identity. And yet it is so important to think of you and your partner as individuals in a relationship, not just as mummy or daddy to the kids.

Here we share six tips on how to sustain a strong relationship after having children: 1. TAKE TIME TO TALK – AND LISTEN You may feel so exhausted come the end of the day that you want to flop on the sofa in front of the TV. Yet people in strong relationships create space in their day to truly listen to each other. By listen we mean hearing every word, not waiting to jump in with how difficult your day has been. Take 10 minutes each to talk about your day. Your partner repeats back what they’ve heard, without adding a comment or defence. Be clear and honest. This will help you communicate in a way you where you both feel heard and understood.

2. LET GO OF THE NEED TO BE RIGHT Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy? You can’t have both. Holding onto the need to be right can build resentment and stress between you and your partner. You may be holding on tight to a perceived grievance – socks left on the floor again, drinks after work that went on late, or forgetting to buy the milk. The tighter you hold on, the more your resentment can simmer and then escalate into a flaming row. Ask yourself: is it really the socks or the drinks that are the issue here? Or are there other needs not being met? Do you feel taken for granted, or just need to feel like a person, not just a parent? To strengthen your relationship, communicate what you need in a straightforward way, and let go of self-righteousness about the socks.

influences on your family unit. For example, the occasions when grandparents can visit, or the number of times per month you spend with friends, or which days of the week you will work late. Agreeing boundaries upfront prevents arguments down the line.

4. RINGFENCE YOUR ‘TOGETHER TIME’ To keep your relationship strong and healthy it’s a good idea to spend time just the two of you as a couple. This may be a daytime coffee or a special date night. Talk about yourselves rather than the children. Take care of each other. Whatever you decide to do, stick to the plan and be present for your partner.

5. PLAN SOME ‘ME’ TIME When you board a flight and they run you through safety procedures, they tell you to put your own oxygen mask on first before helping others. The same goes for relationships and family. While they are incredibly important to you, it is essential you book some ‘me’ time in the diary. This can be a few minutes a day, an evening per week, or even a day to yourself. Agree with your partner when you will both have individual time to pursue friendships and hobbies, or just to have some time out to gather your thoughts. ‘Me’ time can be the oxygen that keeps you and your relationship surviving and thriving.



There can be all kinds of pressures on a relationship within a family: chores, children, in-laws, friends, work, social gatherings, home, money. Any or all of these aspects can make demands on a relationship at some point. Agree with your partner some structure and rules around outside

If things really are difficult, then couple’s counselling can help you and your partner understand where your pressure points are, and can support you where you’re stuck. You can learn strategies for communication and improving balance in your family life. Therapy can be an investment in yourselves and your relationship.

Karen Dempsey is a psychotherapist with The Awareness Centre in Clapham SW4. The centre works with individuals, couples, families and groups seven days a week, offering counselling, psychotherapy and psychology. www.theawarenesscentre.com


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Deals from local shops in your inbox! Voucher Local is a new initiative aiming to offer you great deals while revitalising independent shopping in Wandsworth and Clapham. Helena Foss of Families talks to its young and enthusiastic founder, Archie Fitzherbert.

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO SET UP VOUCHER LOCAL? After I graduated from university in Bristol, I came back home to Wandsworth and was shocked to see how much the high streets here have changed. It was depressing to see so many family-owned, quirky and independent shops and eateries having been replaced by chain stores and estate agents. It’s like the area is losing its personality. I remember going out when I was young and chatting to the friendly traders and shopkeepers. Our local butcher even taught me how to swim! Bristol has kept that feeling of individuality and community and I thought, that’s what I want to keep here too.

LOCAL TRADERS NEED TO BE PART OF ONLINE DEALS Everyone loves a bargain. There is consumer research that shows that 10 million people used voucher codes last year in Britain and 67% of people look online for deals. Local traders need to be part of that. Big companies have the budgets to offer discounts via national advertising but small businesses don’t. ‘Voucher Local’ offers local businesses a low, one-off

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

monthly payment to be part of the scheme. Restaurants, shops, children’s entertainers, hairdressers, dentists, beauty salons, garages – all kinds of enterprises can offer discounts through our website. For the customer it’s free. We don’t share details with third parties so there’s no junk mail either once you sign up. Discount codes can be emailed directly to your phone which you show to the trader. Easy peasy.

YOU SEEM REALLY PASSIONATE ABOUT THIS Yes, I want my community to thrive. Our strapline is ‘Love it, Don’t Lose it.’ If we don’t start supporting our local independent traders they will disappear. So let’s get Wandsworth and Clapham’s high streets back by giving local people great deals that save them money. It’s win-win. Sign up to www.voucherlocal.org to receive Archie’s weekly email full of great local deals.



PAINTING & DECORATING Interior / Exterior Experienced, Reliable, Clean Fully Guaranteed / Insured FREE ADVICE & QUOTE John:- James & Lamont

020 8462 4646 - 07802 535695


Our French Saturday School is perfect for children to refresh and improve their communication skills in French. The lessons are tailored to your children's needs in a friendly environment. Wimbledon College Edge Hill SW19 4NS Places available from 3 years old Register now to avoid any disappointment

The school follows the traditional French curriculum mixed with the Montessori method. The lessons are held in the beautiful setting of Wimbledon College on Saturdays from 10 am until 12 am. For more information, visit the website: www.lespetitesgrenouilles.co.uk or contact Delphine by phone: 07985468466 or by email: ecolelespetitesgrenouilles@gmail.com




Feeling skint? There’s lots to do in London for free! Compiled by Joanna Parry

Hands-on activities at Fulham Palace


The 2017 Book Swap is going to be huge, with even more venues than ever before! No website we could find, search participating venues online. 11 February Give your old and unwanted books a new home, find great new books to take away and make your very own journal. Free, No booking necessary. 15 February Family Activity Day: The Venerable Victorians: imagine yourself as a Victorian Lady or Gent this half term, with costumes to try on and a whole host of Victorian themed activities and take-home crafts. No booking necessary.

V&A Museum of Childhood Cambridge Heath Road E2 9PA www.museumofchildhood.org.uk 11 February Celebrate Chinese New Year with traditional and modern instrumental and dance performances. Take part in Chinese Opera mask making, costume and calligraphy workshops. Drop in, all ages. Chinese New Year 2017 will be loud, colourful and full of dragons. The main parade in central London takes place on 29th January. Dancers and decorations in February too.



Bishop’s Avenue SW6 6EA www.fulhampalace.org 22 January Hands-on Archaeology Come along to this drop-in session for a rare opportunity to get up close and personal with some of Fulham Palace’s archaeological finds. Suitable for all ages. No booking necessary, 1pm-3pm

Geffrye Museum 136 Kingsland Road, Hoxton E2 8EA www.geffrye-museum.org.uk 14-17 February Explore what makes a home happy in this interactive storytelling and craft session. Age 2-5, 10.3011.30am and 12-1pm.



Sure Start Roehampton Roehampton Centre, 166 Roehampton Lane SW15 4HR www.eastwood.wandsworth.sch.uk Tuesdays and Fridays in January and February Weekly sessions where children aged 0-5 years can play with educational toys to help their learning and listen to stories. No need to book. Check your local Sure Start Centre.

EC2Y 5HN www.museumoflondon.org.uk Sundays in January and February Join one of the Museum's hosts and explore the galleries through fun, hands-on activities. 11am and 2pm Saturdays in January and February Family tour: fun and engaging tour of the museum’s galleries, especially for families. Age 5+, 2-2.30pm. Saturdays in January and February Hands-on history: hear incredible London stories as you touch and hold real museum objects. Age 5+, 2-4pm Wednesdays in January and February Little Moles Toddlers Group: fun, hands-on, creative sessions for toddlers, parents and carers. 3.30-4.30pm (no session 15 February.) Book in advance. Wednesdays in January and February Mini Moles Babies Group: sensory, hands-on, play-based activities for you and your baby to enjoy together. 11am-12pm, book in advance.

NCT KENSINGTON AND CHELSEA MEET UP Gambado Chelsea, 7 Townmead Road SW6 2PY www.nct.org.uk/branches/kensington -chelsea Every Wednesday in January and February A great opportunity to meet other mums with babies under 1. 9.3011am, £1, show your NCT card to get in.

CHILDREN’S BOOK SWAP Fulham Palace Bishop’s Avenue SW6 6EA www.fulhampalace.org

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017


The National Gallery Trafalgar Square WC2N 5DN www.nationalgallery.org.uk Every Sunday in January and February Fly away on a magic carpet which comes to land in front of a different painting each week. Age 2+, 10.30–11am and 11.30am-12pm.

NIMBLE TOTS MUSICAL STORYTELLING Royal Festival Hall Southbank Centre, www.southbankcentre.co.uk 11-19 February Hang out with Becky and her cello for interactive musical storytelling. In these sessions for 0-5s, Becky entertains with live music, interactive songs, puppets and stories galore. 10.3011.15am. 11-19 February. Bedtime Stories: Southbank ends each day of the Imagine Children’s Festival with a lovely bedtime tale to send you on your way. 3.45pm, all ages welcome.

TOAD TO THE RESCUE Bank of England Museum Bartholomew Lane, Threadneedle Street EC2R 8AH www.bankofengland.co.uk 13-17 February The fantastic stories from The Wind in the Willows are brought to life by their costumed storyteller in these fun and interactive sessions. 10.30am-4pm

MUSICAL STORYTELLING Foundling Museum 40 Brunswick Square WC1N 1AZ, www.foundlingmuseum.org.uk 17 February Learn about musical games in this interactive storytelling workshop for families. Age 5-10, 10.30am-3.30pm

MINI ACES CLUB FOR UNDER 5S Brooklands Museum Brooklands Road, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 0QN www.brooklandsmuseum.com 12 January, dates in February TBC Mini Aces club brings the Museum to life through stories, craft, song and dance. With a focus on different objects, stories and exhibits each month. 10am and 11.30am, £2 per child, adults, book in advance.

THE NATIONAL GALLERY Trafalgar Square WC2N 5DN www.nationalgallery.org.uk Every Sunday in Jan and Feb Family Sundays Activities designed for families to enjoy and learn together, 11am and 2pm, age 5-11.

There are always free activities at the National Portrait Gallery

GEFFRYE MUSEUM 136 Kingsland Road, Hoxton E2 8EA geffrye-museum.org.uk 14-17 February A Place of Your Own Explore how people make their homes their own. Make door signs, photo frames, ornaments and more. 10.30am-12.30pm and 2-4pm



We took every care in preparing these entries but sometimes events are cancelled or times changed. Please double check event with the organiser to avoid disappointment. Compiled by Joanna Parry

ARTS AND CRAFTS THE CRAFTHOUSE 329 Upper Richmond Road West, East Sheen SW14 8QR 020 8487 2863 www.thecrafthouseuk.com 13-17 February Half Term Art Workshops Different art projects every day. 10am-3pm, art and craft workshops, age 5-10. 10-2pm, sewing workshops, age 7-14

SEW ME PRETTY Wimbledon Park Road SW19 6PE 07714 252660, me@sewpretty.me.uk www.sewpretty.me.uk 9-17 February Kids’ Sewing Workshop Feeling creative? Want to become a fashion designer? Try something different at these creative sewing workshops. 10am-1pm or 1.45-4.45pm, £28 including materials. Full day sessions 10am4.45pm, £56, age 7-12

DAY CAMPS Confidence & Resilience Taster Day



LANGUAGES CLUB PETIT PIERROT Librairie La Page, 7 Harrington Road SW7 3ES 020 7385 5565, admin@clubpetitpierrot.co.uk www.clubpetitpierrot.co.uk 18 February French Mardi Gras Fancy-Dress Sessions Singing, dancing, storytelling…all in French. Please come in disguise - Venez déguisés! 9.45am for 1-3 years, 10.30am for 3-6 years. Book at www.librairielapage.school or call 020 7589 5991 for more details.



Thomas’s Academy, New Kings Road SW6 4LY caroline@etpatatipatata.com www.etpatatipatata.com 13-17 February February Day Camp-Fun in French! 100% French Fun, 100% French Fun! French classes, French dancing, cooking, French drama, French pop music, sing, dance and record a French song! Ages 3-6, 712 and 13-16 years, 9am-3pm. Monday-Friday.

Chelsea and Clapham 0845 400 4000 enquiries@perform.org.uk www.perform.org.uk 13-17 February Half Term Peter Pan Workshop Fill the holidays with an unforgettable treat for 4-7 year olds. Journey into Neverland with Peter Pan, Wendy and the Lost Boys. 10am-3pm, book on 020 7255 9120.



Sinclair House School, 59 Fulham High Street SW6 3JJ 07949 204553, www.nmtouchtyping.co.uk 13-17 February Touch Typing Courses Touch typing courses for children aged 7+, classes are 90 minutes long, £250 for the week. Classes are mixed age and ability. Sibling discounts available.


MUSIC AND DRAMA FUNKY MOVES Role Models are holding an exciting Confidence & Resilience Taster Day for ages 8-12 on Monday February 13th (10am–3pm) at Chelsea Academy School, SW10 0AB, for £75 (including lunch). They’ll be running fun team-building exercises and as well as public speaking; focused on developing a growth mindset and the key ‘soft’ skills required to thrive in social & work environments at school, at home and in life ahead. Learn more www.rolemodels.me or call 020 3637 7107.


Peter Pan workshop at Perform Drama

Balham - The Bedford, SW12 9HD Wimbledon - Hillside Church, SW19 4JZ 07810 431 101 www.funkymoves.com 13-16 February Holiday Courses Play, dance, create and get Funky with Funky Moves... amazing arts and crafts, cool street dance, break dance workshops and a spectacular performance for family. 9.30am12.30 pm daily, age 4-12, £115 for the whole course.

Venues across SW London 020 7957 8220 londondevelopment@chelseafc.com soccerschools@chelseafc.com www.chelseafc.com/foundation www.chelseasoccerschools.co.uk Throughout February half term London Soccer School For boys and girls aged 4-13. Times vary according to course, from £30.

FULHAM FC FOUNDATION Venues in Fulham 0870 442 5432, holidaycourses@fulhamfc.com www.fulhamfc.com Throughout February half term Holiday Courses For all abilities in a fun and challenging environment. 3-5yrs, 9-11am, 6-14 yrs, 9am-3pm, from £15 per day.

SWIMWAY East Sheen, Putney, Kensington and Wimbledon 020 8871 3972, info@swimway.co.uk www.swimway.co.uk

13-17 February Swimming Courses Intensive courses to improve your child’s swimming technique, on a private or semi-private basis. Courses run for half an hour each day, book early to avoid disappointment. Age 3-9, dates and times dependent on venue.

YOUNGSTARS MULTISPORTS AND ACTIVITY CAMP Balham, Clapham, Parsons Green, Putney and Wimbledon 07920 426499 / 07749 343116, info@young-stars.co.uk www.young-stars.co.uk 13-17 February February Holiday Camps Plenty of fun, games and excitement whilst kids are introduced to all aspects of sports in an all inclusive and noncompetitive environment. 3-7 years, times and prices vary.

VARIOUS EVENTS POLKA THEATRE 240 The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1SB 020 8543 4888 www.polkatheatre.com 14 February Circus Games Try your hand at juggling, hula-hooping, diablo and floor-based acrobatics, all within a safe, supportive and welcoming environment. Age 3-5, 12.151.15pm, £15 per child. 15 February Acro-Balance Tumble, balance and roll about in a workshop that will give children a great foundation in circus acrobatics – building strength and coordination. Practice

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


handstands, balancing and lifts, and laugh a lot in the process. Age 3-5, 12.15-1.15pm, £15 per child. 16 February Breakdancing For anyone who likes busting cool moves! Introducing the foundations of hiphop, from body-popping to jumping and locking. Age 3-7, 12.15-1.15pm, £15 per child. 17 February Theatre Unlocked: Act Up! Join an experienced actor for a practical masterclass exploring what it’s like to be a professional. Improve your stagecraft and learn new performance skills through improvisational acting games and techniques. 10.30am-3.30pm, age 8-14, £30

GEFFRYE MUSEUM 136 Kingsland Road, Hoxton E2 8EA www.geffrye-museum.org.uk 14-17 February A Place of Your Own Explore how people make their homes their own. Make door signs, photo frames, ornaments and more. 10.30am-12.30pm and 2-4pm 15-18 February Half term activities Includes Marvellous Mini Rooms, Self Portrait Photos, Printed Pillows, Digital Museum Trails, Designer Phone Cases, Awesome Ornaments and Pet Portraits, and much more! Ages, dates and times vary, see website for details.

HAMPTON COURT PALACE East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU www.hrp.org.uk/HamptonCourtPalace 11-19 February February Half Term – Palace Adventures Become a Time Explorer and discover the stories of Hampton Court Palace by taking part in a fun filled, palace adventure. Meet characters, solve puzzles and create your own piece of the past. 11am–3pm, age 5-11. Included in price of admission.



PUTNEY ARTS THEATRE Ravenna Road SW15 6AW www.putneyartstheatre.org.uk 15-16 February The Magical Chocolate Factory Half term workshop, 10am-2pm each day, age 4-7, £54. Call 020 8788 6943 or email info@g64.org.uk 17 February Treasure Island Play in a Day Half term workshop, 10am-4pm, age 7-11, £38. Call 020 8788 6943 or email info@g64.org.uk

ENJOY HALF-TERM WITH THE NATIONAL TRUST Across the capital National Trust places will be putting on storytelling, activities and trails for children and family visitors alike. For an outdoor adventure you’ll be able to tick off a few of the ‘50 things to do before you're 11 ¾’ challenges by testing out your bush-craft skills as you build a den in the grounds of Ham House or by playing Pooh sticks off the bridges at Morden Hall Park.

MORDEN HALL PARK Nr Wimbledon, 020 8545 6850 Enjoy a lovely walk in the park then learn about Morden Hall Park’s wetland birds and their unique habitat with a series of fun activities. You’ll be going birdwatching and making crafts to take home. Free admission to Morden Hall Park, £4 per child for activities, 11am-4pm. Take the opportunity to drop in at Deen City Farm next door.

HAM HOUSE AND GARDEN Nr Richmond, 020 8940 1950 A really lovely house parents will enjoy and so easy to get to. Join the popular storytelling sessions, art activities and children’s trail. Normal admission applies, 10am-5pm.



Portsmouth Road, Cobham, Surrey KT11 1JE www.painshill.co.uk 14 February Wild Woodland Camp Have a wild time this February half term with campfires, wild art, bushcraft and den building. Age 813, £40 per day, 9am-4pm, advance booking required. Book online or call 01932 868113.

Cromwell Road SW7 2RL www.vam.ac.uk/families Pick up a family trail from the Information Desk and explore the museum through puzzles, drawing and observation. Suitable for 7-12 year-olds. There are also hundreds of exciting hands-on exhibits containing plenty to touch and try out. Admisson free.

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Special Space Safari Show for under-7s show at the Royal Observatory Planetarium Back-Packs, Saturdays Pick up a back pack and explore the museum with fantastic jigsaws, stories, puzzles and games. 10.30am-5pm.

treasures from all around the world. Where will you visit and what will you find? Take a photo and share your adventure. 11am4pm FREE



Greenwich SE10 www.rmg.co.uk The world's largest maritime collection is housed in historic buildings forming part of the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. On Saturdays and Sundays free performances and workshops entertain family visitors. General admission is free; some buildings, special exhibitions and events have an admission fee. Try the Great Explorer An interactive game for families. Borrow a tablet device and set sail across The Great Map to explore distant lands and discover

Romney Road, Greenwich SE10 9NF www.rmg.co.uk/queens-house Designed in 1616 by Inigo Jones for James I's wife, Anne of Denmark, the Queen's House is Britain's first classical building and a masterpiece of 17th-century architecture. The newly-reopened House showcases new displays, including over 450 works of art from the National Maritime Museum's art collections. Focusing on the people and events key to the building's creation and history, the collection also reflects its significance today. Open 10am-5pm, admission free.



SCP Nursery outdoor learning

Teaching resilience starts at the Nursery By Racheal Fordham, Deputy Head of Streatham & Clapham Prep and Ruth Lockyer, Head of Nursery

Developing resilience in girls is currently a hot topic in education, largely relating to senior-school pupils. Risk-taking and the ability to find positive learning in failure should be encouraged from a girl’s first day in Nursery. This is especially important in girls’ schools where an atmosphere of discovery and challenge can be outweighed by praise for good behaviour and listening. A child must feel safe, secure and have a firm sense of belonging in order to develop self-confidence. Nursery is the place where values begin to take form, and where respecting others’ thinking can be explored. No exception was made of the Nursery when Philosophy 4Children and Talk4Writing were introduced at Streatham & Clapham Prep (SCP).

LEARNING TO MAKE INFORMED DECISIONS Walking into the Nursery during a Philosophy4Children session, you would find a calm and engaged atmosphere suited to sharing thoughts and ideas. A group game, such as pass the clap, helps unite the pupils towards a common purpose at the outset. The teacher may use a puppet or storybook to explore ideas from different perspectives and to stimulate questions and explanation amongst the pupils. Opinions and beliefs are expressed individually, in pairs and as a group. Using Goldilocks and the Three Bears, a session began with the girls meeting Baby Bear and taking turns to comfort him because he was sad. The girls then found themselves in a dilemma with a need to work together to problem solve: Baby Bear was without porridge! Different solutions were explored, while the teacher maintained focus with targeted questioning. Pupils listened carefully, took turns, responded thoughtfully, linked suggestions to previous thoughts and accepted the opinions of others - even when they differed! The outcome: the children decided to make a new bowl of porridge. The girls felt a strong sense of responsibility and pride in the part they played in helping someone.

INCREASING SELF CONFIDENCE AND CREATIVITY Talk4Writing develops confidence and creativity around stories and performance. Girls are immersed in rich and carefully chosen literature.


They learn stories by memory and take part in artistic and role play activities. This process of learning naturally embeds story language, structure and vocabulary, as well as fostering comprehension skills. By the time the children are ready to sit down and write, it is a much less daunting task. Progress takes place with greater ease, with the girls blossoming into confident creative writers, willing to explore new vocabulary choices and plot development, and to think independently.

LEARNING TO USE TECHNOLOGY EFFECTIVELY The use of technology in the Nursery crosses over into many other areas of learning, with girls learning to code using e-tablets. The task of learning a story sequence alongside the skills of coding, challenges pupils in a new and exciting way, for example, making a gingerbread man, animating him and recording their own language to retell the story.

OUTDOOR LEARNING Outdoor Learning develops language, creativity and gross motor skills. Creative play in the mud kitchen or water area stimulates discussion and the use of their individual experience in a stress-free atmosphere. The process of ensuring girls deal with new situations with confidence begins with girls as young as three, when they explore new places around the school and community - whether it is a bug hunt in the nature garden or a welly walk through the local park. Common misconception are challenged: that boys are more inclined to outdoor learning and engaging in the physical aspects of learning, and the ‘mis-expectations’ of girls that have traditionally limited their development as robust risk-takers. All of these initiatives are designed to encourage the next generation of girls to use critical and creative thinking to determine their boundaries. www.schs-gdst.net

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Nurseries and Preschools – your ‘need to know’ guide By Liat Hughes-Joshi

More parents than ever send their children to preschool or nursery, thanks in part to free places for three and four-year-olds, and for some two-year-olds. Preschools and nurseries are about learning through play and their benefits can be significant, although there’s no obligation to sign up if you don’t think it will be right for your child.

SO WHAT ARE THE UPSIDES? Beyond the obvious – a few hours of childcare – preschool is a great way to get your little one used to being separated from you or other carers. It could also help them become familiar with an environment that’s more like school and some of the routines and behaviours expected there, such as sharing, listening and taking turns.

HOW CAN I CHOOSE THE RIGHT PRESCHOOL FOR MY CHILD? Speak to other local parents about their experiences and read Ofsted reports for the nurseries/ preschools you’re considering. Really though, there’s no substitute for taking a proper look around, meeting staff and seeing what your own impressions are.



You don’t have to use up the full entitlement of 570 hours and could send your child for fewer if you think 15 hours a week is too much for them initially. Some parents find it works well to start off with just a couple of mornings weekly and build up to more (you will often have the possibility to pay for further hours beyond the entitlement).

All three and four-year-olds in England receive 570 hours per year of free childcare. This can be in a preschool, nursery or with a registered childminder and is normally taken as 15 hours weekly over 38 weeks, but there’s often flexibility on this.

Liat Hughes Joshi is a parenting journalist and an author

Montessori education – an antidote to technology Written by Andrea Dalling of Andrea's Montessori and Tejas Earp of Nightingale 1 & 2 Montessori Nursery

Maria Montessori lived in an era of explosive technological and social change. She was an innovator who embraced change. When she invented her learning apparatus in the 19th century, technology existed, albeit not i-pads. Montessori education remains an antidote for technology in the 21st century. In the Montessori learning environment there is a cautious approach to the introduction of digital technology. We feel that digital experiences should not take the place of hands-on real time activities. They should complement rather than dominate the learning process.

through practical exercises such as pouring liquid or solids from one jug to the other or polishing and cleaning activities.

UNDERSTANDING WHY CHILDREN WANT TO LEARN The objective is principally ‘motivation’ to inspire learning. Children demand freedom to choose activities and thrive when allowed control over their own choices. “Activate the child’s own desire to learn in a prepared environment”. M. Montessori Today children are exposed and are choked with enormous data in the technological world they live in, constantly absorbing information and images, which have to be processed. Adults/teachers need to demonstrate how to reduce such exposure and show how to develop awareness of the natural environment through use of Montessori materials.

Developing fine motor skills at Nightingale Montessori Nursery

USING YOUR SENSES When we look at the areas of learning in a Montessori-prepared environment, the children explore through using their senses. The Montessori materials encourage the child to develop eye-hand coordination, concentration, fine and gross motor movements. There are the sensorial, practical life, cultural, mathematical and literacy areas of learning in a Montessori environment. The children are free to choose and explore activities until they master their skills through handling the Montessori materials. These materials are made of wood, so that children explore the real texture and weight of each apparatus. The children also engage in activities that help them develop independence and confidence

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

SLOW DOWN AND THINK FOR YOURSELF We strongly believe Maria Montessori gave us the solution and her work is more relevant today than ever. Children in the Montessori classroom have the chance to slow down and think for themselves, make choices and learn using real natural materials such as wood, metal or even glass. Numerous activities offer opportunity to learn and develop children’s everyday practical and academic skills. Andrea's Montessori, a home-based childcare setting specialising in providing care to babies and toddlers, has established a partnership with the local nursery schools Nightingale 1 & 2 Montessori Nurseries. All three settings believe in delivering high quality Montessori care and are Accredited by the MEAB (Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board). 37

Nursery Feature

Children interact with the elderly at Apples and Honey Nursery

Outdoor learning Streatham & Clapham Prep

Have you applied for your nursery place yet? All children are entitled to a free, good quality part-time nursery place from the September, January or April following their third birthday, plus two-year-olds may also be eligible for up to 15 hours of free early education for 38 weeks of the year. The deadline for nursery places within a primary school in September 2017 is Friday 10 February for Wandsworth residents, but dates vary from borough to borough. Contact your local council to find out more about how to apply for a place and the cut off date.

Here is a round up of your local nursery schools news LONDON MAYOR VISITS NEW NURSERY London Mayor, Sadiq Khan visited a long awaited new children’s nursery in Wandsworth in December 2016. Magdalen Nursery has been working closely with the NHS and Wandsworth Council to address a chronic shortage of nurseries for Key Workers and staff of St George’s Hospital. They have been supported by Sadiq Khan previously for all the work they do in the community and he has helped them campaign for more nursery places in Tooting and Earlsfield. A year later, their new nursery has opened to great critical acclaim from Ofsted and Local authorities for its innovative design and quality of childcare.


The first Magdalen Nursery, based in Earlsfield, is a very well known local school and has great ties with the local community. As well as childcare, they have an excellent reputation for creating links with different members of the community. They work closely with families, providing support for various issues that might affect them, through their popular forums and seminars. One which has been hailed recently is their support group for new mothers with babies, focussing on Post Natal Depression and anxiety. The Lodge, Magdalen Road London. SW18 3NP 07973 636531 www.magdalennursery.com

Opening in April 2017, Apples and Honey will be based in the beautiful, spacious gardens of Nightingale House on Nightingale Lane offering pre-school and wrap around care for 25 year olds. The nursery will be the second branch of the successful, Ofsted outstanding, Apples and Honey on Wimbledon Common and will be different in that it will offer full day care for those who want it.

Hill in Battersea, where everyone is encouraged, valued, supported and challenged. The children have positive attitudes to learning, high standards of behaviour and excellent attainment across the curriculum. Visit their website homepage to view their new school video! Their next School Open Day is on 10th January 2017 at 9.30am.

Very interestingly, and quite uniquely, the children will have weekly interaction with the residents of the nursing home in which it will be based. What an enriching experience for both the children and the residents! The children will also have interaction with the numerous residents’ pets. Opened 7.30-6.30 daily.

21 Wycliffe Road SW11 5QR 020 72283857 www.johnburns.wandsworth.sch.uk


NURSERY ADMISSSIONS OPEN FOR 2017 John Burns Primary School is a small, multicultural, successful school located just off Lavender


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk



The Apples & Honey toddler group will open on 23rd January, prior to the nursery opening in April. It will be open to the whole community and anyone with an under 5 is welcome including babies. This will be on Monday mornings at Nightingale House, Nightingale Lane, Balham, SW12. 10.30-12, only £3. Email applesandhoney@gmail.com for more information.

Local nursery Little People is one of only ten across England to become the first to achieve Millie’s Mark, the new quality mark for excellence in paediatric first aid for early years settings. Millie’s Mark is awarded to nurseries where all staff members who work with children are qualified in paediatric first aid and who have well-deployed first aid processes. ‘As Millie's parents, we are extremely proud that Millie's Mark is our daughter's legacy and we are so pleased that the first ten nurseries in England have now received their award,’ said Joanne Thompson from Millie’s Trust. ‘For parents, choosing a nursery with the mark allows them to have confidence in the paediatric first aid training that the people looking after their children will have.’

New Bright Horizons West Hill Day Nursery and Preschool

THE MONTESSORI SCHOOL HELPS WITH SCHOOL RUN Really good to know: The Montessori School in Chestnut Grove SW12 provides a great service for children at local schools as well as for their own children. In the morning the children can come for breakfast at 8am and then be accompanied to their school by a member of

NEW NURSERY IN WEST HILL OPENING 2017 Bright Horizons are excited to announce the opening of a brand new Day Nursery and Preschool in Wandsworth. The nursery will offer seven individual home bases, each tailored to the children’s different age groups. There will also be four external play spaces, a dedicated children’s cookery studio and art studio where the children can flourish and explore while building a lifelong love of learning. For more information, visit www.brighthorizons.co.uk or call 020 3370 2012

•Little People of Fulham, 250A Lillie Road SW6 7PX, 020 7386 0006. •Little People of Shepherd’s Bush, 9 Willow Vale W12 0PA, 020 8749 2877, www.littlepeople.co.uk / www.milliesmark.com



staff. At the end of the school day, a member of staff will collect your child and bring them back the Montessori School. They are given a snack and helped with homework and this is followed by a different fun activity each day (currently Spanish, Gymnastics, Cookery, Art and Science Experiments). Then it is time for tea and stories, until parents come to pick up, by 6.30pm. Please contact the school for further information on: 020 8673 8037

Tucked away in Merton Park, Little Hands has recently opened its second branch in Cranleigh Tennis Club offering a flexible Montessori curriculum for children aged 2-4. A spacious setting, lovely garden, nurturing environment and low staff ratio means each child will develop to his potential. Confidence, concentration and a passion to learn are instilled in all the children and they leave Little Hands ready and keen for big school. Cranleigh Rd, Merton Park SW19 3LX 07854 887786 www.littlehandsmontessori.com

NEW NURSERY IN RIVERSIDE The London Preschool has opened a brand new branch in Wandsworth’s Riverside Quarter. The London Preschool is run with a passion for excellence and innovation and a fundamental belief about the importance of education and its ability to nurture through music, the arts, science, technology, literacy, numeracy and physical exploration. In fact, their children have composed and performed their own operas and held exhibitions of their own art! Open 7am7pm. 2 Knightley Walk SW18 1GZ, 020 3538 7602, www.londonpreschool.co.uk

St Joseph's RC Primary School It’s the Catholic ethos of the School that makes St Joseph’s a very special place to be. This is what a parent said: “There is a generosity of spirit that makes the School unique and binds all members of the international community together.” St Joseph’s is an inclusive, tolerant and nurturing school where people genuinely care for each other and where children are receiving the highest quality of teaching and learning, both in terms of national expectations and local borough achievement in Kensington and Chelsea. It is now one of the highest performing schools— in the top 1% of schools nationally for valued added progress of pupil achievement—and this is testament to the strength and commitment of the staff, governors, parents and children, working in a thriving and supportive environment.

Little Hands Montessori opens new branch

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

St Joseph's RC Primary School, Cadogan Street, London SW3 2QT www.stjosephs.rbkc.sch.uk 39


SINCLAIR HOUSE INTRODUCES NEW ACTIVITY SESSIONS SHS has recently introduced an exciting new schedule of activities for the afternoon sessions including cookery, music with Blueberry Playsongs, yoga, (encouraging muscle strength, flexibility), gardening (growing their own fruits, vegetables and flowers) and science.

PLAYDAYS AN OUTSTANDING NURSERY! The two branches of Playdays in West Kensington W14 were awarded the grade of “Outstanding” from Ofsted within two months of each other in springtime this year. Playdays also has branches in Wimbledon. The dedication and commitment of the staff team reflects in the daily practice of the nurseries. They spend the time getting to know each child and their family, and partnership with parents is of the utmost importance. This in turn makes it possible for Playdays to plan appropriately for each child, making their time at nursery a happy and enjoyable one.

As part of their strategy to help keep children safe online, Sinclair House has an open dialogue with both pupils and families; this term they held an “Esafety Workshop” for parents with independent expert Karl Hopwood to help parents support safer online behaviours and promote digital literacy. 159 and 196 Munster Road, Fulham SW6 6AU www.sinclairhouseschool.co.uk

Est 1976 Ofsted registered and MEAB Accredited An independent nursery school for children 2 to 5 years

• 13 Barton Road, W14 9HB • 45 Comeragh Road, W14 9HT 020 7386 9083 • Queens Road, SW19 020 8946 8139 • Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 020 8944 8959 www.playdaysnurseries.co.uk

GOOD TIMES AT BEAU PEEP’S NURSERY As a new, boutique nursery, Beau Peep’s on the Fulham Road in Parson’s Green was delighted to receive a ‘Good’ from their first Ofsted inspection. Commended for the ‘warm, kind and welcoming’ atmosphere and ‘confident and sociable children’, they really are going from strength to strength. New Manager Samantha Coleman joins the team with a wealth of experience and can’t wait to build upon these positive Ofsted findings in 2017. 679A Fulham Road, SW6 5PZ 020 3609 5222 www.beaupeeps.co.uk

• EYFS and Montessori Method of teaching • MEAB inspected and accredited Montessori nurseries (the only ones in SW12) • Ballet, Drama, Football, French and Music classes • Morning, afternoon and full day sessions (term time only) • Summer Clubs Nightingale 1 Montessori: St Luke's Church Hall, 194 Ramsden Rd, SW12 8RQ. 07958 567210 Nightingale 2 Montessori: St Stephen's Church Hall, 35 Weir Rd, SW12 0NU. 07930 401769 Contact: info@nightingalemontessori.co.uk www.nightingalemontessori.co.uk Register early to avoid disappointment.


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017


NURSERY FEATURE Dawmouse Montessori Nursery School “To assist a child we must provide him with an environment which will able him to develop freely� Maria Montessori

Celebrating 20 years of excellence in Montessori teaching Come and visit one of our two Dawmouse Montessori Nursery Schools in Fulham and discover why we have enjoyed such a long period of success teaching children from 2yrs to 5yrs in their early years education. To learn more about us just visit our new web site at www.dawmouse.co.uk or email miss.emma@dawmouse.com


Tel: 020 83989294

Passionate about teaching and learning


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk




A Traditional Teaching Nursery - Learning through Play We are an Ofsted rated 'Good' day care nursery school. We lay the foundation of learning where your child's interests form the base to develop their full potential. Our nursery is very homely and friendly, and staff are fully qualified with many years' experience in Early Years. Open all year round 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday except bank holidays and four weeks in a year for Easter, Christmas and summer closures. 15 hours weekly free sessions available for 2-4yrs. Please contact our office on 020 7274 8333. info@littleangelsbrixton.co.uk www.littleangelsbrixton.co.uk 50 Gresham Road, Brixton, SW9 7NL

Principal and Owner: Jennifer M. R. Williams, NNEB RSH (Norlander)

The Studio Day Nursery, 91-93 Moore Park Road, Fulham, London SW6 2DA Ofsted Number: 143814 Telephone: 020 7736 9256 Est. 1987 “Children make good progress in this stimulating nursery.” - Ofsted Report June 2015 “Staff work in partnerships with others to support children's learning well. They have good links with teachers to support children who move to school. In addition, staff work well with community health professionals to promote learning for children with special educational needs and/or disabilities.” - Ofsted Report June 2015

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017




Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk





We provide a delightful environment for children from 2yrs of age. Offering the full Montessori curriculum with visiting teachers for Music, Dancing, Yoga, French, Drama, Sports & Gymnastics.

This session takes place from 3:30pm to 4:30pm for children from approximately 2yrs of age to attend with an adult.


0208 673 8037 102 Chestnut Grove Balham, London, SW12 8JJ

BEFORE & AFTER SCHOOL CARE We offer a drop-off and pick-up service to and from local schools, with breakfast club, help with homework and supper. Holiday school also offered.

www.themontessorischool.co.uk 46

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Our amazing new nursery is now open, serving Earlsfield and Tooting

Our skilled staff prepare children aged 2­5 years for their next school and start them on a journey of life­long learning. Incorporating art, cooking, music, sport, languages, drama, yoga and all aspects of the Early Years Curriculum. Please arrange a visit to see the learning and excitement in action.

St George’s Grove, London, SW17 0PZ

www.oaktreenurseryschool.co.uk Ramsden Hall, 21 Ramsden Road, Balham, SW12 8QX Tel: 020 3633 4185

020 8682 1386 grove@magdalennursery.com www.magdalennursery.com

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Magdalen Nursery




Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017



Please call the number below to book an appointment to view the nursery

Ages 3 months to 5 years Opening times 8 am to 6 pm (Mon to Fri) Excellent facilities * newly renovated premises * stimulating, caring and homely environment * qualified and experienced staff * outside garden * Good OFSTED report * French * Music & movement * Early years foundation stage curriculum * baby unit * close to public transport * Sensory room 58 Blairderry Road, Streatham Hill, London SW2 4SB Tel: 020 8674 4844 Fax: 020 8671 0062 enquiries@oaktreedaynursery.com www.oaktreedaynursery.com

OPENING SOON New branch of Ofsted Outstanding NURSERY

April 20th Full day care or term time places Ages 2-5 105 Nightingale Lane, SW12 www.applesandhoneynightingale.com


Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


DIARY DATES Singing Performance Workshop The Singing Summerhouse, Raynes Park SW20 0SS singforpleasure.wordpress.com 14 January Learn to perform or polish your performing skills with an accompanist. Receive guidance and develop confidence. 10am-1pm, all levels welcome, age 14+, £38

First Aid Courses Battersea 020 8133 8552 www.firstaidtraininglondon.co.uk info@firstaidtraininglondon.co.uk 19th January and 18 February Paediatric First Aid (1 day) £96 Discount code: Families.

The London Model Engineering Exhibition Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way N22 7AY www.londonmodelengineering.co.uk 21-22 January See the full spectrum of modelling, from traditional model engineering, steam locomotives and traction engines through to aeroplanes and robots.

First Aid for Life Balham and Westminster www.firstaidforlife.org.uk 20, 25 January, 4, 10, 24 February The Emergency Course A 3-hour course covering care of the unconscious baby and child as


well as most commonly occurring injuries and illnesses such as choking, bleeding, breaks, bleeds, burns, head injury and febrile convulsions. 9.30am-12.30pm, £60/£65 © Peter MacDiarmid, Courtesy Somerset House

We take much care in preparing these What’s On pages, but please do double check with organiser before setting out as things change.


Chelsea Physic Garden 66 Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea SW3 4HS www.chelseaphysicgarden.co.uk 28 January – 3 February Snowdrop Days See snowdrops in all their glory before the rest of the country, thanks to the unique warm micro-climate at Chelsea Physic Garden. Innovative displays so that visitors can admire their intricate details up close. Snowdrop themed Walks, Talks and Workshops. 15 February The Wiggly Wild Show Discover the wonderful world of animals with The Wiggly Wild Show including a pygmy hedgehog, giant snails, millipedes and much more! Ages 4+, 10.30am-12pm or 1pm2.30pm, book online. 16 February Unwoven History with Studio Cultivate Explore the history of silk through story-telling, exploration and practical activities. Ages 7-16, 10.30am-3pm, book online.

Hair by Sam McKnight at Somerset House

Southbank Centre Belvedere Road SE1 8XX www.southbankcentre.co.uk To 23 April Adventures in Moominland The first major exhibition devoted to The Moomins: Adventures in Moominland. This brand new immersive experience explores the internationally-recognised stories of the Moomins through the life of its author Tove Jansson. Visitors to the exhibition will travel through seven different interactive worlds that explore the inspirations behind her much-loved stories. From £12

Throughout January and February Matilda The Musical Inspired by the twisted genius of Roald Dahl, Matilda revels in the anarchy of childhood, the power of imagination and the inspiring story of a girl who dares to change her destiny.

Colour House Theatre Watermill Way SW19 2RD www.colourhousetheatre.co.uk Saturdays and Sundays to 22 January Cinderella

The Big Sleep event Putney Studio and Community Hall, 5-7 Disraeli Road, SW15 2DR 07814 872419 www.charlotteandlouise.co.uk 4th February This event encompasses everything that can impact upon the sleep of your baby plus an opportunity to ask the experts any questions you may have. £TBC

DRAMA Battersea Arts Centre Lavender Hill SW11 5TN www.bac.org.uk 16-17 February Much Ado About Puffin Traverse stormy seas in this funny tale about a man all alone, a friendly puffin and a whole lot of fuss over nothing. Told with puppetry, beautiful music, and good old fashioned storytelling. 11am and 1.30pm, £10/£8, age 4+ Family Saturdays On the last Saturday of every month, families take over BAC for a day of fun, food and free activities. There is something for everyone to get involved with and space for the whole family to chill out and relax. 10am-3pm, check website for details.

The Cambridge Theatre

Great child friendly activities at Hampton Court Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Seven Dials, 32-34 Earlham Street WC2H 9HU uk.matildathemusical.com

Poor Cinderella has to clean the house for her nasty step-mother and ugly step-sisters. But when the Royal Palace announces there will be a Ball to find a wife for the handsome Prince and every girl in the kingdom is invited, will Cinderella finally get the fairytale ending she deserves? 2pm and 4pm, £12/£10 Saturdays and Sundays 4 February – 9 April Red Riding Hood Little Red Riding Hood is walking through the woods on her way to care for her poorly old Grandma. A fantastic traditional tale with a musical twist and lots of action and excitement. 2pm and 4pm, £12/£10






Cine Mini 11 February Griffin Primary School, Stewarts Road, Battersea SW8 4JB With red-carpet season in full swing, you and your little VIPS are invited to an exciting new family cinema experience as Cine Mini presents ‘Babe.’ Their motto ‘play with movies’ brings the awardwinning film to life in a relaxed movie setting with surprise experiences, live farmyard fun, special guests and sensory adventures to keep kids entertained throughout the movie screening. Buggy-friendly location is walking distance from Clapham North Tube. For more details and to buy tickets go to www.cineminifilmclub.com

Do-re-mi Babies Concerts Barnes, Chelsea, Fulham, Wandsworth www.doremibabies.co.uk Dates throughout January and February Inspirational and fun classical concerts. Babies and toddlers are welcome to crawl, dance, sing, cry, nappy change and more, so you can relax and enjoy some wonderful music. £10 per adult, children free, tickets online or on the door. Dates vary depending on venue.

Royal Festival Hall Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX www.southbankcentre.co.uk 10-12 February Wow Hoop In this circus performance for families, the show begins softly to introduce the liveliness and joy of circus to infants. During the workshop session afterwards, participants learn scarf tricks and partner acrobatics. Baby circus director Mette Ylikorva based the development of this show on the needs of infant families, and the performance has now toured internationally to child health

centres, festivals and children’s events. For babies aged 4-12 months, 11am, 1pm and 3pm, £12 for one adult and one baby. 10 February Groove Baby Bring along your young ones for a fun dancing time. Listen to high-quality jazz, world, groove and contemporary improvised music. All ages welcome, 1-2pm.

Fulham Palace Bishop’s Avenue SW6 6EA www.fulhampalace.org Mondays and Tuesdays in January and February The Palace Explorers Join the Palace Explorers, weekly parent/carer and toddler sessions for children aged 2-4. £4 per child, which includes a drink and healthy snack, booking essential. 9.30am10.30am

The Royal Albert Hall Kensington Gore SW7 2AP www.royalalberthall.com Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 17 January Storytelling and Music Sessions A series of sessions for babies and toddlers aged 0-4, to encourage

Shakespeare's Globe

Little Angel Theatre

Lyric Hammersmith

21 New Globe Walk, Bankside SE1 9DT www.shakespearesglobe.com To 22 January The Little Match Girl and Other Happier Tales A dark and haunting telling of Hans Christian Andersen's tale for adults and the bravest of children. This magical production will infuse puppetry and music to transport you into the world of the impoverished little Match Girl. £15-£48

14 Dagmar Passage, Cross Street N1 2DN www.littleangeltheatre.com Until 29 January ME... The world is a very big place, especially for a tiny baby penguin who is just finding her feet. A lovely and touching story about a parent and their love for their child by much loved children's author Emma Dodd. Ages 2-6, tickets £10 children, £12 adults.

One Lyric Square W6 0QL www.lyric.co.uk 25 January to 19 February Fantastic Mr Fox 2017 Boggis, Bunce and Bean, three greedy, smelly, horrid farmers hate the cunning Mr Fox. This brand new musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr Fox is family fun at its finest. A Wondercrump treat for the whole family! Age 5+, from £15 21 January. Rapunzel and the Tower of Doom Tangles? Split ends? Frizzy? It’s hard enough having a bad hair day but poor Rapunzel spends her life in a tower with a wicked old witch using her captive locks as a stepladder. Age 4-11, £8. 28 January Why The Whales Came Gracie and Daniel are forbidden to go near the Birdman but can they unravel his secrets and the villagers’ fears? Age 7-11, 11am and 2pm, £8 4 February Wow Said The Owl Explore the wow-wow world of colours with a curious little owl who is

Museum of London Chinese New Year


interaction between parents/carers and their little ones using musical instruments, singing, movement and stories. 10am and 11.30am, £5

Hampton Court Palace East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU www.hrp.org.uk/HamptonCourtPalace Selected Thursdays in February and March. Tiny Explorers Explore and play in the Palace together. Discover the stories of Hampton Court Palace through music, movement, messy play and more. £6 per child, price includes up to two adults £5 per child for members. 10.30am – babies, 1pm – walkers, 2.30pm – walkers.

Morden Hall Park Morden Hall Road, Morden SM4 5JD www.nationaltrust.org.uk Every Monday in January and February Little Explorers Bring your little ones to enjoy crafts, outdoor activities, songs and stories. Little Explorers is a fun activity session for children aged 2-5, 10am, £2 per child, £1 siblings.

determined to stay away to see what daylight brings. Age 2-5, 11am and 2pm, £8 11 February Mavis Sparkle With a magician for a dad and a stargazer for a mum, there’s more to Mavis than meets the eye… A Cosmic show full of magic, illusion, animation and laughter. Age 4-11, 11am and 2pm, £8 14–18 February Lily and the Snow Bear Lily loves snow! So she pops on her coat and sets off to explore. At the bottom of the garden she finds a lost little snow bear and the adventure begins. Age 3-11, 11am and 2pm, £10 25 February Much Ado About Puffin Traverse stormy seas and reckless tides in this funny tale about a man all alone, a friendly puffin and a whole lot of fuss over nothing. Age 4-11, 11am and 2pm, £8

Putney Arts Theatre Ravenna Road SW15 6AW www.putneyartstheatre.org.uk 26-28 January Letter to Lacey / Girls Like

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


That Group 64's renowned Young Company return with a powerful double bill, which challenges teenage relationships in 2017. Two important pieces of theatre for all young people and their parents, age 13+, £12/£8

New Wimbledon Theatre The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1QG atgtickets.com/venues/newwimbledon-theatre 31 January – 4 February Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat X-Factor winner Joe McElderry dons the coveted coat in Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sparkling family musical. 4 February Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Workshop Perform your favourite scenes and songs from the hit musical and then see the show after the workshop. 2.30pm, £35, includes a ticket for the show. 10 February Coppelia The popular classical ballet rolls into the New Wimbledon Theatre. Tickets from £19.50 6-7 March Justin's Party Are you ready to party? Because BAFTA award winning actor Justin Fletcher is coming to town and YOU are invited! From £14.75

The X Factor Live Tour London 2017 The 02 Arena, Peninsula Square SE10 0DX www.ticketmaster.ie 25 February It’s back! The final eight X Factor contestants will embark on an arena tour as they take to the road for the The X Factor Live Tour. 1pm and 6.30pm

How To Hide a Lion When a lion is chased out of town, a young girl helps him find somewhere to hide. It’s not easy lions are too big, too fluffy and too heavy! Age 3-6, £12.50/£9 11 February Comedy Club 4 Kids The best stand-ups and sketch acts from the comedy circuit doing their thing for children and their families. Age 6+, 2.30pm, £12.50/£9 14-18 February The Party The cake is made, the presents have arrived, and the music is playing - it’s going to be the best birthday ever. Enter a cyclist, a man dressed as a giant chicken and a mysterious stranger as this topsyturvy celebration spirals out of control! Age 3–7, £13.50/£10 23-26 February The Giant Jam Sandwich One hot summer day, when 4 million wasps invade the village of Itching Down, everything changes. The picnickers panic and the farmer stops haymaking. Luckily Bap the baker has an ingenious idea to bake the biggest wasp trap ever. Age 3-7, £13.50/£10.

The Royal Albert Hall Kensington Gore SW7 2AP www.royalalberthall.com 12 January – 26 February Amaluna A tale of castaway romance and the obstacles that true love presents, filled with jawdropping performances and Cirque du Soleil’s signature mindblowing acts. 14 February Lily and Bear A truly magical tale about the give and take of friendship. Lily and Bear play pirates, sing, and partake in all manner of bear activities, discovering the joys of sharing along the way. 11.30am and 2pm



Fulham Palace Explorers To 22 January Bump Rollerdisco Bump Rollerdisco welcomes the whole family for festive sparkle and vibes. At weekends look out for DJs and special rollerskating performances too. From £6 4 February In Good Faith Explore the wonders of the universe in this afternoon of activities for families. 1-3.30pm 11 February Rave-A-Roo A brand new clubbing mash-up of festival fun for the whole family, and the ultimate party for kids. Dance, let loose, or sit back, watch and chill. 1pm-3.45pm

Unicorn Theatre 147 Tooley Street SE1 2HZ www.unicorntheatre.com Most Saturdays Up Club Join the Unicorn Play Club for free drop-in activities from portrait painting and potato printing to giant rocket making and more! Just turn up to join or sign up online for e-news. 12noon - 2pm. 30 January-19 August Baby show Time for a walk, better wrap up warm. Poppers, buttons, zips. Scarf, hat, mittens. Inside out, upside down, back to front. This brand new show is a sensory performance with captivating images and intriguing sounds that will keep your little ones rapt. £10 per adult and child. 24 January-5 March The Iron Man Taller than a house, the iron man stood at the top of the cliff, on the very brink, in

The Polka Theatre 240 The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1SB www.polkatheatre.com To 5 February Babe the Sheep Pig Meet the little pig with big dreams, in a heart-warming tale of friendship, adventure and bravery. Can a small pig make it in a dog’s world, and when his farmyard friends are in trouble can Babe save the day? Age 5-11, from £12 To 26 February

Southbank Centre Belvedere Road SE1 8XX www.southbankcentre.co.uk 18 February London Philharmonic Orchestra FUNharmonics: Conducting Science Just how high can you hear? Exactly how do pieces of wood and metal produce the amazing sounds of an orchestra? And what are the special superpowers of their very own LPO musicians? 12pm, £10-£18

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017





the darkness. Using paper-cut silhouettes, puppetry and stopmotion animation, Matthew Robins recreates the world of The Iron Man so vividly that you'll feel you are there. Ages 8+, tickets from £8.

MUSEUMS & GALLERIES Charles Dickens Museum 48 Doughty Street WC1N 2LX www.dickensmuseum.com See the home where Charles Dickens wrote novels including 'Great Expectations', which is still furnished today with his furniture and many personal artefacts. Open 10am-5pm daily, admission £4 children, £9 adults. Until 16 April The Ladybird Life of Dickens: an illustrated Adventure The classic 1965 Ladybird book comes to life in a new exhibition featuring original illustrations and letters between its creators.

Design Museum 224-238 Kensington High Street W8 6AG www.designmuseum.org 27 February Get into Design Workshop An opportunity for enthusiastic young designers to develop skills and confidence in design, and to explore new ideas. 1-4pm, £15/£7.50, ages 7–11 and 12-16

Museum of London Docklands Warehouse 1, West India Quay E14 4AL, www.museumoflondon.org.uk/docklands 28 January

Get close to the Butterflies at RHS Wisley


Chinese New Year Celebrate the year of the rooster at a special family festival. Fill a tray of togetherness, try your hand at paper cutting, fashion a zodiacinspired mobile, listen to traditional Chinese stories, take part in a dragon dance and much more. All ages, 12noon - 4pm FREE Sundays to 30 April Story Seekers Family Tours Join a member of the host team to learn about life in London as you hear, see, feel and smell the past in these multi-sensory, interactive family tours. Ages 5+, 1.45pm FREE 10 February - 3 September The Archaeology of Crossrail See the most complete range of archaeological objects unearthed by the Crossrail project, and discover the story of this great feat of engineering. All ages FREE Half Term Specials Throughout half term the museum will host a series of free workshops, craft sessions and storytellers with a different, London-based theme each day. Ages 5 plus.

London Transport Museum Covent Garden Piazza WC2E 7BB www.ltmuseum.co.uk To 23 April Designology – Shaping London An exhibition celebrating the influence brilliant design has on our daily lives. Design lovers will be able to see early and modern examples of Tube maps. To 18 February Digital Loom and Weaving Futures The ancient art of weaving goes digital. See weavers in action, as they interpret the work of artists and designers into digital woven textile prototypes on a stateof-the-art digital jacquard loom.

Role Models Confidence taster day and SEN camps

Imperial War Museum Lambeth Road, London SE1 www.iwm.org.uk IWM London tells the story of wars through the recollection of people who lived through them, both fighting the cause and at home. Family-friendly attractions, a recreated Family in Wartime house, and creative and object discovery sessions for families on Sundays. FREE Secret War From the development of MI5 and MI6 before the First World War, to Cold War intelligence-gathering and the contemporary use of highly-trained elite forces, the exhibition examines the facts behind the secrecy and why the need for secret agencies remains a subject of continued debate today.

Museum of London EC2Y 5HN www.museumoflondon.org.uk To 17 April Fire! Fire! An exhibition showing how London rose from the ashes of the Great Fire. Step into Pudding Lane and see what life was like for ordinary Londoners in the 17th century, then walk into the bakery where the fire started and see how the flames spread across the city. £4£8, be prepared for long queues at peak times! 21 January, 12 and 16 February, 18 March Great Fire Family Walk Visit the sites struck by the fire in this fun and interactive family walk. 11-11.45am, age 5+, £5-£7, book in advance. 15 January, 26 February and 19 March Digital Workshops Digital workshops exploring the museum

collections. Step into a Victorian photograph, make an animation of a prehistoric animal and explore contemporary London. Age 5+, 12.30-1.30pm, 2-3pm & 3.304.30pm FREE 11-12 March Family Festival - Families Find Out How do we know how hot the fire was? Why did it spread so quickly? Investigate the Great Fire of London like never before with students from Imperial College London and get ready to be inspired by science and technology in this extravaganza of activities in the galleries. All ages. FREE

Natural History Museum Cromwell Road SW7 5BD www.nhm.ac.uk Throughout January and February Colour and Vision Discover the earliest life on Earth and trace the evolutionary history of colour and vision. Find out how early interactions gave rise to the wide variety of colours that we now see in the natural world. £12/£6 Once a month on Saturdays Dino Snore Discover what really happens at the museum when the staff and visitors have gone home. Children aged 7-11 years, from 7pm to 9.50am the following day. Tickets £60.

Science Museum Exhibition Road, South Kensington SW7 2DD Sciencemuseum.org.uk Throughout January and February Wonderlab: The Statoil Gallery A new interactive gallery with live demonstrations and an Explainerled experience revealing the beauty and wonder in the science

Jan/Feb 2017 | 020 8696 9680 | Familiesonline.co.uk


and mathematics that shape our lives. £8/£6

V&A Museum of Childhood Cambridge Heath Road E2 9PA www.museumofchildhood.org.uk 12-18 February The Lost Room A unique immersive experience for two people, for ages 8-100! Once every hour, two intrepid adventurers put on headphones and enter a private interactive world. Get ready for a wonderful adventure through a curious landscape where your imagination takes flight. £12 for two people, 10.30am, 11.30am 12.30pm, 2.30pm, 3.30pm and 4.30pm 13-17 February Toy Generator Card Game Workshop Join artist Amy Brown to become a toy designer, through playing a collaborative game with your family. £5 per child, age 4+, 10.30am, 12pm, 2pm and 3.30pm 13-15 February The Museum Board Game Workshop Design and create your own board game to play at home. £7 per child, age 5+, 10.40am, 12.30pm and 2.40pm

DAYS OUT Chiswick House and Garden W4 2RP www.magicallantern.uk 19 January – 26 February The Magical Lantern Festival London The historic Chiswick House Gardens will be transformed into a fairytale world of light sculptures, Chinese arts, Virtual Reality, games and food with a funfair and 600 square metre ice rink and ice bar.

Landmark Arts Centre Ferry Road, Teddington TW11 9NN www.landmarkartscentre.org 21 January, 18 February and 11 March Kids’ Art Club A different project for each session, including drawing, painting, relief making, printing and collage. Limited places, so early booking essential. 10am–12pm, 5-11 years, £13 per child. 13-17 February Half Term Fun Fun art and craft workshops and

activities for children and young people. Times and dates vary, check website for details.

Star Wars Identities Exhibition The 02 Arena, Peninsula Square SE10 0DX www.list.co.uk/event/654902-starwars-identities-exhibition Throughout January and February An exhibition exploring the concept of identity through characters from the Star Wars universe. Visitors are taken on an interactive quest and leave with a personalised Star Wars character of their very own. Tickets from £10

splash and throw some shapes in the air for extra style. Free with paid admission to the centre. Saturdays and Sundays until 5 February Weekend Family Activities Join Wetlands guides by the fire for some stories about nature, hear tales of wetland creatures and their amazing adventures and then make a birdfeeder from natural recycled materials. Free with admission. Saturdays and Sundays 25 February – 19 March Spring Weekend Family Activities Spot the first signs of spring and see which birds have returned from their winter



‘holiday’ in warmer climates. Enjoy a pond dipping session to see what mini-beasts are about and get creative with nature crafts. Free with admission. 19 February Udderly Amazing Cows! The Wetland Centre’s adorable cows often stand out from the crowd of feathered animals on the reserve and although they aren’t wild, they play a crucial role in managing the wetlands. Learn more about their importance and what the wardens have to do to look after our furry friends. 10– 11am and 1.30–2.30pm. Free with admission.

Butterflies in the Glasshouse RHS Garden Wisley Woking, Surrey GU23 6QB Garden entry tickets can be purchased online at www.rhs.org.uk/wisley to save 10% 14 January - 5 March 2017 Step into the Wisley Glasshouse as it transforms into a tropical paradise with more than 6,000 free-flying exotic butterflies. Escape into the warmth to see these colourful beauties gliding around the cathedral-like space including 15 species never before seen at Wisley. The butterflies feel right at home in the rainforest-like Tropical Zone, filled with huge leaves and flowers including banana plants, floating wetland plants, bromeliads and palm trees. Butterfly-themed weather crafts during Half Term. Activities vary daily, all activities free with normal garden admission. Butterflies admission is always available or you can pre-book a time slot on any day.

The London Wetlands Centre Queen Elizabeth, Barnes SW13 9WT www.wwt.org.uk To 28 January Giant LEGO® Brick-Animal Trail The 11 awesome LEGO models, including a kingfisher, an otter and a swan will form a trail for kids to inspire them to build a better future for nature. 11-19 February Puddle Jumping Competition Bring your wellies and wet weather gear and come and have a splashing time! Use your imagination to create the biggest, most exciting

Familiesonline.co.uk | 020 8696 9680 | Jan/Feb 2017

Star Wars Identities Exhibition


sensory rooms, self-directed trails and an arts and crafts session. Age under 13, 8.30-10am, advanced booking required. FREE

Role Models 020 3637 7107 www.rolemodels.me 13-16 February February Special Needs Camp Special Educational Needs Camp for ages 6-12, 9.30am–3.30pm in Southfields, SW19 6JP. £60 +VAT per day discounted to £50 +VAT if the week is booked. Councils offer significant funding (eg. Wandsworth contribute £50/day).

Imperial War Museum Lambeth Road SE1 6HZ www.iwm.org.uk First Sunday of every month Audio-described Tours Experience the First World War Galleries through one of these live audio-description tours for blind and partially sighted visitors, ages 14+. 9.30am, booking essential on 020 7091 3157 or visitorenquiries @iwm.org.uk FREE

Museum of London EC2Y 5HN www.museumoflondon.org.uk 4 March Morning explorers (ASC friendly) Morning Explorers offers families with children who have an Autistic Spectrum Condition the opportunity to explore the museum while it is quiet. Discover fascinating objects and take part in relaxed family activities such as

Gambado Chelsea 7 Station Court SW6 2PY www.gambado.com/centres/chelsea Dates in January and February Chelsea Austism Session Come and join these fantastic Chelsea Autism friendly indoor soft play sessions at Gambado! Children £5, includes 1 adult, extra adults £2.50, see website for details.

•If you have info, please send to whatson@FamiliesSW.co.uk


Profile for Families Magazine

Families London SW Jan Feb 2017 issue 263  

Useful info parenting magazine for SW London - what's on, things to do, days out, health, choosing a nursery... etc.

Families London SW Jan Feb 2017 issue 263  

Useful info parenting magazine for SW London - what's on, things to do, days out, health, choosing a nursery... etc.