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ISSUE 86: May/June 2013

The very useful FREE magazine for families in West London including Kensington, Notting Hill, Maida Vale, Paddington, Hammersmith, Chiswick and Ealing

Our biggest party feature ever!

Picture courtesy of

Lots of great ideas for your child's next birthday bash…

Families West • PO Box 32231 • London W5 1JR • Tel: 020 8930 4707 • Fax: 0208 930 7704 • E-mail:


Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013

News & Views In this issue The thing that my teens remember most about when they were little is their birthdays. We have birthday traditions in my house that we still keep up even now they have outgrown them. Cards and presents from the family in bed as soon as you wake up. Birthday messages in unusual places (bathroom mirror, loo roll, under your breakfast plate), dinner at our birthday restaurant etc. We have tried lots of different parties – at home, church halls and playcentres. Entertainers, games and balloons. Indoor parties, parties in the garden and parties in the park. They have all been memorable. So this year’s party feature is full of ideas to make your child’s birthday a really special day. If you are going down the route of hiring an entertainer then do ask them for advice. They have seen it all and know what works. All the info will also be on our website Thank goodness we have (hopefully) seen the end of the cold weather. Now is the time to venture out with your little ones. Use our extensive What’s On listings to give you ideas for where to go and what to do. The warmer weather may prompt you to start thinking about the summer and for those of you who like/need to plan ahead, turn to our Book Now for Summer listings, for children’s camps and workshops. We will bring you much more of those in our July/August issue.

Contents News & Views 3-5 It's Party Time! 6-7 Local Party Listings 8-11 Dates for your Diary: Half Term Workshops for children & Diary Dates for families 12 Early Bird Bookings for Summer 13 Raising Girls: Getting girls back on track 14 Education 16-19 What's On in West London 20-26 Classifieds 27

May/June 2013

BusyBumble Tots in Notting Hill BusyBumble Tots is a unique concept designed to offer parents and their young children a term classes alternating each week between four different subjects. The rotating classes will include yoga, arts and crafts, music and cooking. The classes are for children aged between 18 months and 3 years. Saskia Hayward, an experienced childminder, owner of her own crèche and mother to a little girl is behind the BusyBumble Tots idea. Classes will be held at St Peters Hall, 59a Portobello Road, W11 or call Saskia on 07801519051

New café for mums and babies in Hammersmith Age UK in Hammersmith W6 have just launched a friendly community cafe aimed at mums and their babies. It will be opening in a recently refurbished lounge overlooking a large walled private garden. Good well priced simple cakes and food will be available as well as toys and amusements. The cafe is intended as a place for mums to meet and socialize in tranquil surroundings and will also offer a 5 week massage course from an experienced professional therapist for £5 a session. The café is at 105 Greyhound Road, London W6 8NJ. Please contact Peter on 0207 386 2657 to find out more.

Rhythm Studio As well as Little Rhythm, now a well-established weekly drop in class for under-5s in Westbourne Grove and Kensal Rise, The Rhythm Studio offers a variety of classes suitable for children up to 14 years, and beyond. During term-time, a regular program of rock and pop music lessons take place at the school in North Kensington. Students can choose to take one-to-one tuition or small group lessons on their chosen instrument, with classes scheduled after-school and at weekends. Drummers, singers, guitarists, pianists and bassists can also take part in weekly band sessions, and music technology classes allow budding producers to develop their production skills. During the school holidays, Rock And Roll Boot Camp gets underway where young musicians spend a week forming bands, learning classic songs, recording in a professional studio and preparing for a gig at the end of the week. Contact The Rhythm Studio on 020 8969 8616 e: Families West is designed by Natalie Schmidt of and printed by Ridgeway Press, 12 Campbell Court, Bramley, Tadley, Hampshire RG26 5EG. Tel: 01252 885837. Copyright Families West Magazine 2013. Colour transparencies and any other original materials submitted for publication are sent at owner’s risk and while every care is taken, neither Families nor its agents accept liability for loss or damage. Families West is part of the Families group, established in 1990 and headed by Families South West. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under license. We take every care preparing this magazine but the publishers and distributors cannot be held responsible for the claims of the advertisers nor the accuracy of the contents nor for any consequence.

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Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


News & Views Savings accounts for children Most banks and building societies offer special savings accounts for children. These often pay better rates of interest than standard savings accounts and are designed specifically for children with free gifts, magazines and birthday cards. The one that’s right for your child will depend on whether: • you want to save on a regular basis or have a lump sum to put away • you can afford to tie-up your money for a set period of time • you want your child to have access to the cash Savings Accounts – Regular savings accounts often pay higher rates of interest. For example, Halifax is offering an impressive 6% on its regular savings account. But if you don’t want to save on a regular basis then opt for the best paying account you can find. For example, Virgin Money’s Young Saver account pays 3%. It’s also worth looking at standard savings accounts and if they offer better rates, you may want to opt for one of them. Some children’s accounts, such as Lloyds TSB’s children account which pays 3%, are only available if a parent has an account with the savings institution. Other things to watch out for are minimum investment levels, how many withdrawals you can make each year and if you need to give notice before withdrawing your money. As with any account, you need to regularly check the interest rates being paid to make sure you’re getting a good deal. You can do this at MoneyVista’s Savings Watch Tax and savings – Interest earned on savings is taxable. But as you need to earn more than the personal tax allowance (£8,105 in 2012/2013) to be a taxpayer, few children pay tax. To ensure they get interest tax-free fill in form R85. If they’ve already paid tax you can reclaim this by completing form R40. There are special rules if a parent gives savings to their child. If these savings earn gross interest of £100 or more a year (£200 if both parents contribute), then all the interest is taxed as if it belongs to the parent. If you don’t want your child to be able to withdraw the cash you’ve saved for them, look for an account where you can name yourself as trustee. You can still register for tax-free interest by completing form R85. Junior ISAs – There are two types of Junior ISAs (JISAs) – cash JISAs and stocks and shares JISAs. Cash JISAs are just like savings accounts except all the interest earned is tax-free. Parents can invest up to £3,600 in the current tax year in JISAs and this money is then locked away until the child reaches 18. 4

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

Cash JISAs are offered by a number of banks and building societies and rates of interest are typically 2% to 3% at present. The advantage of a JISA is that once a child reaches 18 this money is automatically tipped into an adult ISA which means the money remains in a tax-free savings account. The potential disadvantage with JISAs is that you cannot get at the money before your child is 18 and when the account matures, it’s your child and not you who has access to the cash. Any child under 18 is eligible for a JISA providing they don't have a Child Trust Fund which was the predecessor to JISAs. NS&I Children’s Bonds – These are 5-year lump-sum investments for children under 16. You can invest between £25 and £3,000 in each issue of the bonds. They earn a guaranteed rate of interest (2.5% for the latest issue) and interest is tax-free.

MoneyVista is a free personal finance website. Full of guides, budgeting tips and expert help, we aim to help you take control of your money and plan for your family’s future. To find out more visit Provided by Abigail Montrose Personal finance editor, MoneyVista

It is that time of year again and if you have a child in Year 2 or Year 6, the chances are that all discussions at school will lead to SATS. We bring you some tips on how to keep calm during this time.

Families Magazine SATS survival guide The pressure is on but the best thing you can do for your child is keep things in perspective. More than likely, your child is coping with lots of extra revision homework and inevitably their year 6 classroom focus is on SATs, SATs and more SATs. But parents – fingers off the panic buttons, please! Yes, we know you want to get your child off to a good start in secondary school – and we understand that many schools take SATS results into account when putting year 7 pupils into sets – but, and it is a big BUT: • Your child will perform better if they are relaxed, and they will only relax if you do • Secondary schools nearly always retest children in September and many reset again at the end of year 7, so SATS are not the be all and end all of their education • If your child copes well with SATs, they will find it easier to stay calm when the pressure ratchets up for GCSEs and A-levels.

So in the run up to SATs, what can you do? Bear in mind there are only a few weeks left and it is best to avoid overload. Don’t try to cover 2 years work in 2 weeks, just focus on one or two areas at most where you know your child could use some practice. Run through exam techniques with your child as sometimes lack of technique trips up a child, however well prepared they are content wise. • Remind them to read the whole question. Many pupils get caught out by not reading a question in full. A good way of doing this is to underline the key words. • Advise them to skip difficult questions and go back later if they have time. Even a confident child can get thrown if they get stuck on an unfamiliar problem. Remind them there is no rule that says they have to answer any question. Moving on to questions they can do will stop the panic setting in, and they won’t waste time and forfeit easy marks elsewhere. • Reinforce the fact that they should show all workings out in Maths because they can pick up marks for method even if a calculation error means they get the wrong answer. • In reading comprehension, remind them that 3 mark questions will mean they should give fuller answers than one mark questions. This seems obvious to an adult used to sitting exams but is not always to a child. • Tell them if time allows when they have finished the paper, they should check their work. It gives them a chance to correct any silly mistakes and can mean additional marks. • Finally, but most importantly of all, reassure them that you don’t mind what result they get as long as they have tried. May/June 2013

News & Views HOW TO series. How to get the kids to grow things

• Start with margarine tubs, yoghurt pots, and any other small containers. Instead of fancy trays with separate sections, you’ll find just as much use in empty egg cartons. A lollypop stick can make a great plant label and can be used when dipping out seedlings. And what about a water pistol instead of a watering can. • There is so much for children to learn. Explain to younger children that the seeds have popped underground and covered up to sleep, helping them understand that they need to be gentle with them and treat them with care. Make sure they know to water regularly and then sit back and watch it grow. • A good idea to show how plants need time to grow, lots of sunshine and water is to grow three separate pots of cress. Place one in sunlight with plenty of water, one in a dark cupboard with plenty of water, and one in sunlight with no water. The difference will be there to see.

Inspire their senses We all have a particular fondness for plants which stimulate our senses and children are no different; point out plants with soft leaves and bright flowers, aromatic herbs, scented flowers, grasses and leaves that rustle when blown, etc. Plants attract wildlife, which can be hugely exciting. Wildflowers attract bees and butterflies, and watch out for the insects. All of them have a purpose in the garden, for example hedgehogs and toads eat the slugs and snails, and worms create holes in the soil. Good plants to start with include sunflowers, potatoes in a bucket, cress in damp cotton wool in an eggshell, quick edible lettuce or peas.

© barneyboogles –

Gardening doesn’t require a huge garden or allotment; in fact, it can actually be beneficial to start out with smaller spaces such as a window box or a restricted area. Just ensure that the allocated area gets enough sunlight.

We do recommend: • The Family Kitchen Garden by Karen Liebreich, Jutta Wagner and Annette Wendland (14 May 2009) • is a resources website that encourages the joys and benefits of gardening with children. It features a list of garden themed story books, things to do and places to visit in and around London. There are also recycling ideas for making a child’s gardening area fun and colourful.

Thames Explorer Trust Thames Explorer Trust is an environmental education charity that has been running for 25 years. The aim of the Trust is to raise awareness of the Thames through a range of activities for people all ages and backgrounds. Last year over 18,000 people took part in their river activities provided at 10 locations along the Tidal Thames. Their website offers a “Families” section which includes events, resources and advice. They run a number of family events throughout the year including river dipping, family fun days and foreshore walks which provide both children and adults with a chance to explore the river either by boat

or by going on to the river ‘beach’ at low tide. The activities allow families to search for hidden treasures such as ancient pottery and wonderful wildlife and to learn more about the magic of the Thames – it is the cleanest city river in the world and a major wildlife corridor through our capital and is steeped in fascinating history! Their school programmes can be adapted into informal learning sessions so that they are suitable for families and community groups.

Look out for their activities in Chiswick in their What’s On pages.

Children love receiving their own letters! The Little Letter Company posts weekly craft kits to children aged 3-6, addressed to them in colourful envelopes. Just £10 for a one month trial!*

No more trudging into town to buy two googly eyes and a pipe cleaner, each pack contains everything you need!

*£2-£2.50 p/w thereafter 0845 838 2499 (free from most BT landlines) May/June 2013

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


! e m i t y t r a p It 's

By Joanna Moorhead

© Claire Greenway –

A birthday party is the highpoint of the year for most kids – so the pressure is on to get it right. The secret, as ever, is in the planning. But how do you find out which party is right for your child? We guide you through the options.


Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013

It's Party Time!

The traditional party

Top tips to make it work: 1. Agree ground rules with the birthday child beforehand about which rooms are in and out of bounds 2. Have a timetable for what's happening when 3. Think about a project, eg build a bear kits, jewellerymaking, pirate games or hiring an entertainer. 4. Give them chance to let off steam in the garden 5. For tea, spread a huge paper tablecloth on the floor and get them to sit around the edges of it. At the end, simply fold it up with all the rubbish inside and bin.

The action party What is it? Paintballing, go-karting, swimming, Indoor playgym etc Who's it suitable for? Older children; kids with lots of energy who enjoy racing around The pros: Your house remains intact; the kids have something to focus on, and lots of opportunities to let off steam; many children end up covered in bruises from paintballing (though they don't seem to mind!) The cons: It can be very expensive; although some options, eg a swimming pool party, trip to an adventure playground, can be good value

Top tips to make it work 1. If the activity is long and energetic it might be best to postpone a winter birthday party to the spring (the kids might get wet and cold as they'll be outside for ages). 2. Take plenty of water, squash, snacks including fruit – they'll need plenty of energy for all that running around. 3. Make ABSOLUTELY sure you've checked all restrictions, eg height restrictions, beforehand – there's nothing worse than finding out on the day that one of your guests is too small to participate. 4. Make sure you get parental consent forms signed well in advance – the venue will require you to do this before they allow you in. 5. Ensure the kids wear any safety equipment at all times. May/June 2013

© Claire Greenway –

What is it? An at-home for the birthday child and friends, with traditional games like pass the parcel (always a winner), pin the tail on the donkey, and musical bumps. Who's it suitable for? Great for nursery and reception age children, but don't neglect its values for older kids, especially girls of eight or nine who often enjoy nothing more than inviting their friends back to their house and having a girly time. The pros: It's cheap (or at least, it certainly can be); other parents often stay to help you out, keep you company, especially if you promise a glass of prosecco to help everyone through The cons: You may need to redecorate afterwards; you'll certainly need to do a major tidy up. It can be difficult to keep your birthday child's siblings out of the way, which could lead to conflict.

The church hall party What is it? An indoor party in a hired venue Who's it suitable for? Children of five plus, who are confident about being left somewhere they don't know The pros: A lot more space than they'd have if you were at home The cons: You'll have to leave the place spotless afterwards, and pay for any damage

Top tips to make it work 1. Try to find somewhere with outdoor space as well in case it's a lovely day. 2. Ask if you can borrow/use playgroup play equipment. 3. Have lots of help, and have tea reasonably early in the afternoon so you can get it tidied away before the end. 4. If you've got the budget, consider hiring an entertainer – the extra space will make it a lot more fun. 5. Musical games, dancing, discos etc are great fun in church halls.

And finally... Whatever sort of party you're having don't neglect the party bags! Every kid, at every party, is secretly (or not so secretly!) longing for a party bag – and part of the excitement for your child is helping to put the bags together. Have a budget and stick to it – party bags can add hugely to the cost of a party – but try and limit the wasteful plastic toys that get thrown away immediately.

See our online Children’s Parties Section for more, including: 8 low cost party bags ideas: Our editorial team top tips: Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


Party Listings Party supplies BEST KIDS PARTY For a great range of party supplies and unusual party bags delivered direct to your door. 0845 5196615

MEXICOLORE Lovely range of party piñatas PARTY PLUS LTD at 4 Acton Lane, Chiswick, London W4 5NB also offers a mail-order service. They have a wide range of party-ware including Angry Birds, Ben 10, Hello Kitty and many more. Celebrity and Royal face masks are also available. 020 8994 1674.

Party food BETTY BLYTHE VINTAGE TEAROOM Cakes and children’s tea parties in West Kensington.

BK FANCY DRESS & PARTY SHOP at 127 Northfields Avenue, London W13.

BUTTERCUP CAKE SHOP Large cakes and cupcakes in Kensington. Cake decorating parties for children.

Find all these listings in our party directory on

Let me entertain you… THE ACTION STATION Imaginative interactive storytelling parties. Choose from mermaids, funky witches and wizards, fairies or princesses, pirates, knights or cowboys, spies or drama parties. Clowns, magicians, jugglers, circus skills experts, face painters, make up artists and DJs also available. 0870 770 2705 ADAM ANTS PARTIES Magic, balloon modelling, dancing, singing and puppets. Themes include disco, build-a-bear, art and Olympic sports. Face painters, small tables and chairs, and other party equipment available. Midweek discounts. 020 8959 1045

Whatever event you’re celebrating their friendly staff can help. They stock a wide range of goods to meet all your party needs such as fancy dress costumes for children and adults, hats, wigs, masks and face paints. They stock banners, decorations, party bags, piñatas, favours, foil and latex balloons. They hire table and chairs for adults and children and helium gas cylinders. They also hire bouncy castles and have bunting, flags and other great ideas for summer fairs, fetes and festivals. 020 8840 0110 e:

Canapes Gastronomiques specialise in food miniaturisation for childrens and adults parties. Toddlers-Tweens: can enjoy creative fun foods with big flavours (which have nutritional value too!) Complete menus or stylish food boxes. Healthy options and dietary needs catered for. Tween-Teens: can sample innovative savoury and sweet canapes, mini buffets or tea parties. Adults: can enjoy tiny culinary delights for every type of party- be it canapes to go with drinks or designer teas. Plus Goody bags with edible treats and a healthy option available. Please visit or call 020 7794 2017 HUMMINGBIRD BAKERY Buy the iconic cupcakes at the local branch on Portobello Road in Notting Hill. Delivers to most West London postcodes.

Circus Circus a long established party shop offers Party Rental!! Sweet little tables and chairs from only 99p! Celebrate for less!! FREE balloons with each order!!!! 176 Wandsworth Bridge Road, Fulham, London, SW6 2UQ 020 7731 4128 8

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

LOVE CAKE BAKERY Based in Shepherds Bush/ Chiswick. UPSY DAISY BAKERY at 387 King Street, W6 9NJ Cakes, cupcakes and children’s tea parties.

Rowena at Parties To Remember never tires of the games she plays with her young clients throughout the year. Hearing “Are there more games?” and “Let’s play that again!” is one of the most rewarding things of her party day. The real-name testimonials on Rowena’s website shows more than can be written here about how the children love Parties To Remember. Rowena ensures that the birthday child feels comfortable: she meets the family and the child before every party so she is not a stranger on the big day. All of them, parent and child, can work together on how to structure the party and select prizes suitable for the party age group. This is not as simple as it may sound: that free consultation at the child’s home can take an hour. The games can be tailored to any venue: home or hired hall. Phone 020 72493242 BOO BOO THE CHILDREN’S ENTERTAINER For lots of laughter, fun and games with mini disco, balloon modelling, juggling, magic tricks and puppet show. He has vast experience entertaining children of all ages and is suitable for all occasions. Recommended by the Evening Standard. 020 7727 3817 FUN WITH FIMO CLAY is a unique, creative, fully supervised and non-messy activity, which is just perfect for age 6+ birthday parties. Children can make jewellery, picture frames, cute animals or even miniature fast food to bake in the oven at home. 020 8992 3767 or 07970 793401. May/June 2013

Party Listings

Cooking Parties! • Fun, cooking parties • For boys and girls aged 5-16 years • Cooking classes

Let Glitter Divas take away the stress of hosting “The Perfect Party” Glitter Divas specialise in Hosting Fabulous parties for girls of all ages. Our Services include our Popular Mini make over Party. Perfect for your little style divas, “who know how to have fun”. Fabulous hair styles and braiding. Gorgeous glittery Make up, sparkly nail varnish and temporary tattoos, Jewellery Making Parties, Arts & Craft Parties and our New Cupcake decorating party! Visit our website for further party packages email or contact us on 07947544995 follow us on twitter @glitterdivas

Parents: are you looking for a kids’ party with a difference? The appeal of LEGO is engaging for all ages and children never lose the passion to recreate in bricks something which stirs their imagination. The team at HG Education, offer unique and exciting parties building working robots from LEGO! Your kids will be engrossed for hours and each child gets a LEGO goody bag to take home. Younger kids will have an amazing session using LEGO robotics with built-in Bluetooth controllers and compete in a variety of robot races, including Robot TAG. Older kids get a LEGO robot which they can customise with parts and weapons and then have fun with Robot Wars. Or they can choose remote control car racing, where the cars do slalom, obstacle and endurance racing over a special track. To book a robotics party, call: 0800 411 8999, email: or go to: Please note: LEGO® is a registered trademark of the LEGO® Group of companies which does not sponsor, authorise or endorse the above programmes or the HG Education website.

Visit us at our website for loads more party ideas for all ages in West London If you would like to advertise in Families West please email or phone 020 8930 4707

May/June 2013

Give your child the best party ever! whisking, baking, giggling, rolling, making, laughing, turning, licking, joking Bedazzled Events plans and creates the perfect party for all ages and occasions. We love creating one off stunning parties, corporate events and wedding creches. Our parties can include dancing, balloon modeling, face painting, interactive storytelling, parachute, games, soft play and lots more! You simply pick the theme and let us bring it to life. From pirates to fairies, tea parties to murder mysteries we customise to your every need.

A great way to learn while having fun! Call for details:

0208 876 9912 email:

Our entertainers are CRB checked and have public liability insurance. M: 07964 708505

TIM BARNES (Member of the Magic Circle) Over 25 years of top magical entertainment, fun, mystery, illusion and Harry the white rabbit! 020 8568 5706

Magical, funfilled, inspiring party entertainment from popular and recommended entertainer Laurie Temple, with his award-winning children’s company, The Party Wizard. ( Whether it is a small, intimate party at home or a larger extravaganza, Laurie creates a uniquely magical and memorable party, with Magic, Circus skills, Guitar and songs, puppetry, MiniDisco and creative dancing, balloonology, etc. (see website for themed parties). Laurie also organizes special parties for adults, weddings and corporate events through “Laurie was amazing fun! We have already booked him for next year!” --Tess Daly (strictly come dancing) “Laurie had the children eating out of his hands within minutes. All the parents had as much fun as the children!” --Gurinder Chada OBE (Bend it Like Beckham, Bride and Prejudice) “Brilliant and bewitching entertainment!”--Daily Telegraph

Please contact Laurie for further info at e: or 07951596240 Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


Party Listings Lots of action… AMANDA'S ACTION CLUB Amanda’s Action Club’s brand new party formats for 6-12 year olds include the Action Breakdance Party, Strike a Pose Party and Gangnam Style party – parties for kids in the know! For more info call 01895 623999 or e: LITTLE KICKERS football training birthday parties take the effort out of organising party entertainment for Mum and Dad and make the perfect birthday experience for toddlers and young children. The one hour party sessions include tried and tested fun and varied, energetic football related activities and games suitable for both boys and girls, helping them work off all that party food! 020 8979 8048 or e:ealing, Chiswick & Hammersmith 07782 503571 KIDDIKICKS Classic sports parties for children from 2 to 12. Themes include football, rugby, multi-sport, sports day, and mini tournaments for football nuts! Quality trophies and medals. Venue finding free of charge. 020 7937 7965. THE WHEELIE GOOD PARTY COMPANY Something brilliant for boys and girls- A jeep driving adventure party. They bring their electric jeeps and indoor track to a venue of your choice for the most memorable party! For children aged between 4 and 8 years old.

Music/dance parties BLUEBERRY PLAYSONGS provide lively, interactive musical parties for 1-5 year olds. Guitar-accompanied action songs, games and dancing, a puppet, shaky eggs and parachute add to the fun. Call 020 8677 6871, email

Little Rhythm Delightful, fun-filled, music based parties… suits all temperaments and ages from 1-5 years. Using drums and many other instruments we guarantee your child will have a great time making music as they celebrate. Parties can be as gentle or as rowdy as you like !! Also available to keep children entertained at social events, wedding receptions, adult parties, etc. Contact for more information and to book 0208 969 8616 or visit 10

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

DIDDI DANCE Children enjoy an hour of great activities including dancing games, action songs, hoops, dance ribbons, bubbles, balloons, bells and lots of fun. 07426 009 179 e:

Drama parties

‘All about inspiring young children to cook and enjoy healthy food’ We offer H kids’ cooking parties H H holiday classes H H classes & workshops for primary schools H Cooking parties and holiday classes are suitable for children aged 7 and over. The birthday boy or girl can choose from our delicious party menus and make their party food along with their friends.

Allsorts drama for children run their popular drama classes during term time. Friday’s at More House School, 22-24 Pont Street SW1 for ages 4-6 from 4pm – 5pm and ages 7-11, 11-13 and 14-18 from 5pm – 7pm and on Saturday’s at Notting Hill Prep School, Lancaster Road W11 and South Hampstead Girls School, Netherhall Gardens NW3 for ages 4-6 from 10am-11am and ages 7-11, 11-13 and 14-18 from 11pm-1pm. Tel 0208 767 5298 or for further info visit Allsorts also run wonderful holiday workshops and arrange bespoke drama parties. PERFORM Perform Parties are energetic, fun and infectious! Children just can't resist joining all of the fantasy games and activities. Based around a colourful theme, Perform use the power of imagination to get everyone involved in your child’s birthday. Variety of themes for ages 1-12 years 0845 4001280 STAGECOACH PARTIES Themed parties for 4-10 year olds and Murder Mystery Parties for 11-16 year olds at venues of your choice. Sit back, relax and let them do all the work! For parties in Chiswick call 020 8398 4709 e: For parties in Kensington call 020 8398 8106

Cooking/Science parties COOKIE CRUMBLES Children from 3 -16 years have enormous fun cooking and baking their own meal in home cooking parties, helped by Cordon Bleu chefs – who clean up afterwards! Also-dinner and baking parties for teenagers, and chocolate parties for all. 020 8876 9912 e: CLEAN KIDZ COOKERY Children’s cookery parties for ages 4-16. 07900 693428

“Relish did a cookery party for my 11-year-old daughter. They were very organised and helpful and made the whole party the most stress-free party we have ever had. I will definitely be using them again and have recommended them to friends and family.”

Contact Sarah on 07947 063155 MOTHER NATURE SCIENCE Perfect entertainment for children aged 4-12. These “cooler than cool” parties can be held outdoors, at your home or wherever you choose to hold a party for your child. Each party features an impressive array of spectacular science demonstrations, party games and hands on activities. Every child receives a fun and educational take-home experiment. Free party invites and free mileage within 10 miles of the office. Dates book up months in advance so book early. 020 8863 8832

Party venues Lots of action

BRAMLEY’S BIG ADVENTURE London’s Most Central Indoor Playground with all-inclusive children’s parties from £8 per child. This includes 75 minutes play in the 3-level play area and party meal of your choice for 45 minutes in your own private party room as well as party bags and balloons for each child to take home. Bronze, Silver, Gold, Themed or Private Hire Party Packages available. Available: 10am-6pm Mon-Fri and 10am-6.30pm Sat and Sun. 136 Bramley Road, London W10 6TJ (Latimer Road tube) 020 8960 1515

May/June 2013

Party Listings HILLINGDON OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CENTRE Rafting, abseiling, pedal karts, giant swings and more. IZZY JONES Arty parties for little ones in Queen’s Park W9. THE LITTLE GYM Active, themed, gymnasticsbased parties for children up to age 12. Venues include: Westfield 020 8735 0817 e: Chiswick 020 8994 3729 e: Wandsworth and Fulham 020 8874 6567 Hampton and Teddington 020 8977 0099 e:

Local Leisure

Centre Parties Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre (Chiswick) Swimming, sport and soft play parties. TW8 0HJ. 0845 456 6675 Elthorne Sports Centre (Hanwell) Sports and Games Parties 020 8579 3226 Greenford Sports Centre (Greenford) Sports, games and trampoline parties. UB6. 020 8575 9157 Gurnell Leisure Centre (Ealing) Football and swimming parties. W13 OAL. 020 8998 3241 Jubilee Sports Centre (Westminster) Soft play parties with use of the hall. W10 4RR. 020 8960 9629 Northolt Leisure Centre (Northolt) Swimming parties. UB5 4AB. 020 8825 7014 Phoenix Fitness Centre and Janet Adegoke Swimming Pool Centre Sports Themed party packages. W12 7DB. 020 8735 4900 Porchester Centre (Westminster) Swimming parties. W2 5HS. 020 7792 2919 Seymour Leisure Centre (Westminster) Soft play parties in the Jungle Gym and Sports parties. W1H 5TJ. 020 7723 8019 Southall Sports Centre (Southall) Sports, games and trampoline parties. UB1 1DP. 020 8571 8871

Children’s Parties at The Park Club Allow us to take the pain out of Children’s Parties so you can put the fun back in! Everything will be organized and prepared for you. Each party is assigned a dedicated Party Entertainer and assistant who will design the party individually for every child. We offer parties for children aged 1 years+ including Crèche parties, Parachute play time, Olympic themed and sporting parties and much more. All our parties are fun, energetic and designed to cater for your requirements. Parties are bookable for members and nonmembers on Saturdays and Sundays from 1.30-3.30pm and 4.30-6.30pm If you would like more information please call Claire Griffin on 0208 743 6263 or email SNAKES AND LADDERS Indoor soft play centre

Bowling alleys ALL STAR LANES 6 Porchester Gardens, W2 4DB 020 7313 8363 QUEENS 17 Queensway, Bayswater, London, W2 4QP 020 7229 0172

Ice skating Rinks QUEENS 17 Queensway, Bayswater, London, W2 4QP 020 7229 0172 May/June 2013

Twyford Sports Centre (Acton) Sports, games and trampoline parties. W3. 020 8993 9095 WESTWAY SPORTS CENTRE (North Kensington) W10 6RP. Climbing, Tennis, Football and Fives Parties. 020 8969 0992

“Days out” parties BEKONSCOT MODEL VILLAGE AND RAILWAY For the train fanatics in your life. KEW BRIDGE STEAM MUSEUM LONDON DUNGEONS Definitely one for the older ones. LYRIC THEATRE A theatre show with a party afterwards. NATIONAL ARMY MUSEUM Choose between a “major” or a “general” party in the Kids Zone. ODDS FARM PARK A day at the farm with everything thrown in- all you need to do is bring the kids and the cake. Wooburn Common Road, Wooburn Common High Wycombe HP10 0LX 01628 520188 SCIENCE MUSEUM See an IMAX movie and party afterwards.

Blueberry Playsongs Parties! Wonderful musical parties for 1-6 year olds. Contact us on

020 8677 6871

WWT LONDON WETLAND CENTRE Pond dipping and creepy crawly hunts followed by a picnic in the Tower. Make your listing ‘stand out from the crowd’ with an enhanced listing – approx 100 words boxed or colour-backed, plus a graphic in our feature. For more information, please email or phone 020 8930 4707

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


Art KENSINGTON IMAGING 17-19 May Half term young film makers club – script writing, acting, filming and editing. 020 7993 6527 RICHMOND THEATRE 18 May Play Time Workshop for ages 3+ 10.30am – 12pm. Fun, free, family arts and crafts and storytelling session. CORNER NINE ARTS PROJECTS 28-31 May FUN WITH FIMO CLAY 30 May Fun, creative craft session for age 6+ in W3. 10.15am-4.15pm. 020 8992 3767

Covent Garden May Fayre and Puppet Festival

Dates for your diary

Half Term Workshops for children

Music and Dance THE MUSIC HOUSE FOR CHILDREN 28 May Music and Movement for under 5s. Theme: All about the Seaside. W12 7LJ 020 8932 2652 RICHMOND THEATRE 26 May Dance into a Fairytale Workshop, 1pm – 2pm. Step into your glass slippers and Dance into the Fairytale for your first ballet class on stage with English National Ballet. For children aged 3 – 6yrs (with parents).

Science/Nature ISIS EDUCATION CENTRE HYDE PARK Part of the Royal Park Foundation 10 May Ramble in the Park: A Bat walk 8.30-10.30pm, in Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park. Use bat detectors to see different species of bats and learn how they hunt. 28 May Big Bug Explorer Day! 10am-3pm, a full day of guided outdoor games and activities for ages 7-11. 29 May Discovery Day 11am-3pm, Find out about butterflies and bumblebees and make a nectar feeder. 30 May Discover Butterflies and Bees! Family Workshop A bug safari to find out about Hyde Park’s butterflies and bees. 28 Jun Ramble in the Park: Summer Sights Stroll through Hyde Park and discover some of its summer secrets. A host of invertebrate species buzz and crawl through the summer meadows and the park's trees display their crowns in full leaf. THAMES EXPLORER TRUST RIVER DIPPING AT CHISWICK EYOT 31 May, 1-3 pm. Begin with a bird walk along the Thames Path followed by river dipping using nets and spotter sheets to catch and identify river creatures. For age 5+ Book ahead on 020 8742 0057 or e: THAMES EXPLORER TRUST FORESHORE WALKS 2 and 16 June. Follow in the footsteps of Victorian street children, many of whom scraped by, by ‘mudlarking’ on the Thames Foreshore; hunting for anything they could find which they could sell. To book, call 0208 742 0057

Sports FIT FOR SPORT 27-31 May Activity Camps for children aged 3-12, with standard, extended and half day options at competitive prices offering a wide range of sports and activities.Venues: Southfield Primary School (W4), Belmont Primary School (W4) and Trailfinders Sports Club (W13) Call 0845 456 3233 or visit 12

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

Diary Dates for families 2 May 14:30 - 16:30 Kensington and Chelsea Bumps and Babies (Notting Hill) Meet other parents, have a cup of tea and your pre-school children can play with the toys that are laid out. Takes place every Thursday at St Peter's Church Notting Hill, Kensington Park Road, Notting Hill, W11 2PN 3 May Imperial Festival For all those who’ve ever wondered what life’s like on the surface of Mars, why babies kick in the womb or how your brain understands and reacts to music. Free. Venue: Imperial College SW7 2AZ 020 7589 5111 3 May Kensington and Chelsea Bumps & Babies (Kensington) at Maggie and Rose, 58 Pembroke Rd, W8 6NX, every Friday from 10.30am-noon. (no meeting on 31 May) For anyone expecting a baby or those with pre-school children to meet others and for the babies and toddlers to have a play. e: 6 May NCT Holland Park Buggy Walk An easy walk in the park followed by tea and the playground. Everyone is welcome – ideal for parents with babies and toddlers as well as Mums-to-be. Every Monday from 10am-11.30am. Meet at Holland Park outside the Café at 10am. e: 7 May Ealing NCT Bumps and Babies A chance to meet other parents with bumps and babies, have a cup of tea and talk to a breastfeeding counselor. 1.30-3.30pm at St Mary's church hall, Ealing, W5 5RH 11 May The 135 Spring Fair 2-4.30pm at Christ the Saviour Church, Ealing Broadway. Craft Stalls, Tombola, Face-Painting, Refreshments, Homemade Cakes and Biscuits, Fancy Dress Competition, Bouncy Castle, Raffle and more. All profits donated to Ealing Churches’ Winter Night Shelter. 11 and 12 May Kensington Dolls House Festival at Kensington Town Hall, London W8 The UK’s largest Festival of miniature designs and dolls houses- from glass vases to silver musical instruments, miniature plants and furry animals, everything you can imagine can be reproduced in miniature scale. Also – Children’s Workshops, ‘Golden Scavenger Hunt’, Gingerbread Craft Club and Party Dresses (dress a doll for a party) for ages 5+ 11 May London Pet Show Featuring the wonderful world of creatures great and small at Earls Court Two. 12 May Covent Garden May Fayre and Puppet Festival Enjoy a day of traditional British entertainment at The Actors' Church, St Paul's Covent Garden, Bedford Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2E 9ED. Puppeteers travel from all over England to perform. Grand procession around Covent Garden at 11am, church service at St Paul's, with Mr Punch in the pulpit and noon and Punch and Judy shows, puppet workshops, stalls, music, maypole dancing and clowns from 12.30-5pm. 12 May May Fayre at Chiswick House and Garden 11am-3pm, £5 per person. Entertainment and activities for all the family inc a circus workshop, crazy golf and a toddlers area with games. 15 May and 12 June REDI Training Paediatric First Aid Courses Takes place at Maggie and Rose in W8 at 7pm. Covers all essential topics on first aid for babies and children with pediatric A&E nurses. 020 7348 7117 15-18 May Spirit of Summer Stylish interior and decorative accessories, fashion pieces, gorgeous children’s clothing, perfect summer gifts and alfresco living including gourmet food and wine at Olympia. 18 May Ealing NCT Nearly New Sale at St John’s Church, Mattock Lane W13 10am-11.30am. Quality used baby, toddler & maternity clothes, toys and equipment, on sale at bargain prices. To register as a seller or for more info call 0844 243 6114 or e: 21-25 May Chelsea Flower Show at Royal Hospital Chelsea, Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea, London, SW3 4SR 7 June Kensington Mums Motherhood Exhibition The exhibition will showcase and support mums in developing and sharing their motherhood stories using their personal pictures which illustrate the definition of motherhood for them. Venue: Beaufort House, Chelsea SW3 5UZ at 7pm. If you are interested in taking part e: Register by 18 May. 15 June Trooping the Colour London celebrates The Queen's official birthday in June each year with Trooping the Colour, an amazing military parade that has taken place in London since 1820 at Horse Guards Parade in St James's Park in June, marking The Queen's official birthday. The Queen leads the troops down the Mall to Buckingham Palace, salutes, and guns are fired in Green Park and at the Tower of London. Finally she joins other members of the Royal Family on the balcony to watch the RAF flypast. 15 June Camden Family Fun Day A fun packed family day where there will be plenty to see and do to keep the family entertained, such as dressing up, storytelling and arts and crafts. Keep an eye out for the Grant Museum of Zoology stall where you’ll find some amazing animals, and to take part in hands-on activities. This event is free and there is no need to book. 10-5pm. At Coram’s Field, 93 Guildford Street, London, WC1N 1DN 16 June Father’s Day Treats all round for the big man! May/June 2013

s g in k o o B d ir B ly r a E e Families West has found som fantastic camps and classes r taking place over the summe ok holidays in West London. Bo ce! now to secure your child’s pla

Base Camps Affordable summer day camps for children aged 6-14. From as little as £18 per day, they can enjoy safe secure activities and arts and crafts with an emphasis on team building. 29th July - 30th August 2013, Monday – Friday from 8am-6pm @ Paddington Academy, 50 Marylands Road, London, W9 2DR. 01235 833030, e:

Mother Nature Science Two programmes: Science Explorer & Scientist Factory 22nd - 26th July, 29th July - 2nd August, 5th - 9th August, 12th -16th August, 19th - 23rd August price: £195 (5 days) / £170 early bird (expires 31st May 2013) – advance booking now available North West London (Covering: Ealing, Hampstead, Harrow, Herts, Bucks, Barnet, Brent, Hillingdon, Enfield and more. 020 8863 8832 e:

Relish Kids cookery classes Learn essential cookery skills at St Mary’s Church Hall, Hanwell W7 3QP 6th, 7th & 8th August, two classes daily. 07947063155 e:

Fun with Fimo Clay Creative sessions, supervised and non-messy! Ages 6 +. 10.15 to 4.15. £50. 30th May Koalas and Kangaroos. 18th July The Owl & the Pussy Cat. 26th July Russian Dolls. 23rd August Wind Chimes. 2nd September Miniature Tea Party 3rd September Mosaic Frame and Photo Album Clare McKnight 020 8992 3767 e:

May/June 2013

29th July to 22nd August Inspirational courses to stimulate your child’s creativity. Creative Writing, Film Making, Robots with Lego, Cool Science, Inventors’ Workshop, Cookery and Craft, Entrepreneur Workshop, Mosaic, Fashion, Pottery, Art, Drama, Street Dance and Gardening are amongst the exciting courses we have on offer this Summer. Students work on ambitious projects with specialist high quality tutors in a happy and safe environment. Small groups ensure some individual attention. Ages: 5-16 years. Venue: The Ellen Wilkinson School, Queens Drive, London W3 OHW. Contact: Annette or Linda on 020 8742 3936 for a brochure.

Allsorts drama Will be running their popular summer drama workshops for children ages 4-6 and 7-12 at More House School, 22-22 Pont Street SW1X 0AA. For further information visit or Tel 020 8969 3249 or 020 8767 5298.


Theatrebugs Five fun filled days of acting, singing, dancing, dressing up and arts and crafts. On day five, we hit the stage! Chiswick:12th-16th August, 9.30am-12.30pm St Michael and All Angels Parish Hall, Priory Avenue, London W4 1T, Brook Green TBC 3.5 year olds to 6 year olds. £120 10% sibling discount. Snack and drink provided. Book online: 08009755290

Stagecoach Kensington, Hammersmith and Chiswick. Four Day Summer Workshop for 4 to 18 year olds. 29th July - 1st August inclusive at Addison Primary School, Addison Gardens, London, W14 0DT. Early Stages (4 to 6 years) 9.30am to 12.30pm. Main Stages (6 to 18 years) 10am to 4pm. An exciting and fun packed four days of singing, dance and drama! You do not have to be a Stagecoach student and no previous experience is necessary – just lots of enthusiasm and energy. Call Sara Catlin Brown on 020 8398 8106, email:,

Yourspace Drama Out of this World is the theme of this summer's Yourspace drama courses for 3-18s, 12th - 16th August, with show at Questors theatre. Pay by June 30 and save £10 (quote FamiliesWest). e:

Fit4 Sport Summer Camps with every week having a different theme. Ages 3-12yrs. Mon 22nd July - Fri 30th August Southfield Park School, Chiswick W4, Brentham Club, Ealing. W5 Trailfinders Sports Club, Ealing W13

Summer Experience, Aladdin for 4-8yr olds Fun-packed five-day drama, dance and singing sessions putting together a lively show for family and friends. Together with a team of experienced theatre professionals, the children will combine live original music, inspirational dance and quick witted improvisation and colourful costumes into a mini performance on the final day.

0845 456 3233

22nd July - 23rd August, in Ealing, Chiswick, Notting Hill, Kew and Fulham. Fee £145. 10% off if booked before the 31st May, 25% discount for siblings attending the same experience at the same venue.

020 8735 0817

Little Kickers

0845 400 1285,,

Ealing: 020 8979 8048 or e:

The Little Gym Westfield 22nd July - 1 Septtember Summer Camp Themed two-hour and three-hour Camps for ages 3-8 years. Non-competitive and supervised by a high ratio of trained instructors.

Summer course August dates tbc at Drayton Manor High School in Hanwell.

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


Raising Girls

Getting girls back on track

A few years ago, psychologist Steve Biddulph was advising parents of boys on how to raise them to avoid a battery of difficulties. Now he’s back with a formula for how to raise girls.

© Beznika –

Joanna Moorhead, a mother of four daughters, asked him what matters most.

The day after I gave birth to our fourth daughter, my husband was involved in a puzzling exchange with our neighbour. The baby had been born at home overnight, so the neighbour was keen to hear the news over the garden fence. “It’s another girl,” announced my husband excitedly. “Oh,” said the neighbour, looking downcast. “And are you very disappointed?”

the average girl was stressed and depressed in a way she hadn’t been before

Gary and I enjoyed telling the story, and we enjoy telling it to this day, because disappointment was truly the very last emotion we felt when our lovely little Catriona arrived to join her big sisters Rosie, Elinor and Miranda. Raising boys may, for all I know, be every bit as exciting and fun-filled as raising girls; but the truth is, I know nothing about it. I’m sure it’s similar, but I’m sure there are also ways in which it’s different: and the point is that, by the time Catriona was born, I was already quite certain that bringing up girls was a fabulous task to be taking centrestage in my life. So, from the moment the line went blue on my pregnancy test, I was secretly hoping for another daughter. And when she finally landed, Gary and I couldn’t have been more thrilled. Fast-forward ten years, and it’s still every bit as wonderful now as it was back then. But the last few years have brought a few scary moments – and, explains psychologist Steve Biddulph, I’m certainly not the only parent of daughters to have discovered that. Fifteen years ago, Biddulph leapt to fame when his groundbreaking book ‘Raising Boys’ tackled the difficulties that were making life tough for parents of boys – rising rates of ADHD, aggressive behaviour, teenage drinking. Back then, he says, “girls were doing just fine”. But no longer. “It all started to change about five years ago. We began to see a sudden and marked plunge in girls’ mental health. Problems such as eating disorders and self-harm, which once had been extremely rare, were now happening in every classroom and every street. And more than this, the average girl was stressed and depressed in a way she hadn’t been before”


daughters: they’ve realised that little girls are extremely malleable from a marketing point of view, and they’ve gone all-out to sell them not only pinkclad dolls and sex-typed toys, but also sexualised clothes (long, long before any little girl should be thinking about looking attractive to the opposite sex) and pre-adolescent make-up.

Biddulph’s advice is simple Avoid all sex-stereotyped toys and products like the plague. From her earliest days, think not about what material possessions you are giving your daughter: instead, concentrate on how you’re making her feel. From birth to two, he explains, all that really matters to a baby girl is that she feels safe and loved. In a world where the arrival of a little girl is often seen as an invitation to start showering her with possessions – cute outfits, a pretty bedroom – he advocates forgetting all about what she has (especially if it’s of the ‘girly’ variety) and concentrating entirely on how welcome, and wanted, and loved she is in your life. The deep-rooted confidence that brings will, he promises, be something she carries with her right through her life. From two to five, a little girl starts feeling interested in the world around her: now, she needs to be introduced to the world as an exciting and fascinating place, a place full of adventures. From five to ten it’s all about people skills – what she most needs to discover, says Biddulph, is that while her feelings are very important indeed, other people’s feelings matter too.

So now Biddulph is back with a new book aimed at parents with girls. And the message he wants to give us is that, from their earliest times, we need to bomb-proof them from what he calls “a world that seems bent on poisoning their confidence and trashing their lives”.

With the coming of puberty, a girl’s thoughts shift towards what Biddulph calls ‘finding her soul’: if she is helped and encouraged to find what he calls her ‘spark’, some passion or interest that she cares deeply about and is willing to invest her time in, that will help her to find fulfilment through her entire life. It’s an empowering message: best of all, for parents like me, is Biddulph’s conviction that the family and the adults surrounding a girl are the most important elements in helping light the fire that will burn through all her days. If girlhood has sometimes seemed scary, Biddulph reminds us that it’s exciting and enriching – and guides us through the skills that will help us help our daughters, time after time.

What the onslaught is all about, says Biddulph, is the fact that advertisers have fixed their beady eyes on our pre-teen

Steve Biddulph’s Raising Girls is published by HarperCollins, £12.99

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013


ce n a D and We welcome children of all abilities

Twisters Ealing St. John’s Church, Mattock Lane, Ealing London W13 9LA

Twisters Acton & Chiswick Acton Baptist Church, Church Road, Acton, London W3 8PP

Gymnastics, Ballet, Dance Drama, Street Jazz/Tap and Boys Street Dance. For Adults: Stretch Workout and Body Blitz.


classes are stimulating and fun. We are well known for our patience and understanding.

Photography by

From Toddlers to Teenagers:

For more information call: Hermione on 0208 933 9997 or Louise on 0208 840 4452 Email: May/June 2013

Ealing and Uxbridge 0208 979 8048 or Chiswick and Hammersmith 07792 503571 or

Where learning’s a ball Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR



EDUCATION NEWS Scholarship Success at Orley Farm School Pupils at Orley Farm School achieved an impressive thirty four scholarships awarded by their chosen senior schools, including schools such as Harrow, Merchant Taylors’, North London Collegiate, Haberdashers’ Aske’ (both girls and boys), St. Paul’s Girls’ and Westminster. Orley Farm is a co-educational school for boys and girls aged four to thirteen. Their main intake is at 4+ with a smaller intake at 11+. Founded in 1850 and set in thirty six acres of playing fields and woodland nestling on the southern slopes of Harrow on the Hill, their impressive site provides their children with all the facilities of a traditional rural prep school. It offers a broad and balanced curriculum in which success in all aspects of the school’s life is encouraged and celebrated. Orley Farm School is a busy and happy place and the children are involved a rich mix of activities throughout their school years. Come along to the open day on Saturday 11th May at 10am to see for yourself. They also offer Wednesday tours by appointment only.

Fleet Tutors Educational Psychologist Service Now Available Currently 10% of the British population are dyslexic, but too often this is not identified at school. Many dyslexic children are very bright, but struggle to fulfil their potential in the classroom if dyslexia or other learning difficulties are not properly identified. Over-burdened schools often don’t have the expertise or the resources available to help children with specific learning needs. Getting a diagnosis in the first place can take months and specialist support can be scarce.

Contact Mrs Julie Jago on 0208 869 7634 or email

Summer-born children at a disadvantage It’s the same old concern from parents with children with summer birthdays – and now another study proves that it is true. Researchers at London University's Institute of Education have found that children who are young for their year are at a disadvantage in most primary schools, and are also likely to be put in the lowest sets, if their classes are streamed, than children born in the autumn. In fact, children born in August are more than twice as likely to be in the lowest set as those born in September. The study reveals that by the age of seven, some 30% of summer-born children were in the lowest set compared with just 10% of those with September birthdays. Researchers also claimed that grouping children into lower sets at a young age can damage their self-confidence, harm their development and restrict academic opportunities, adding that the use of streaming early on in primary school was “hasty and potentially premature”, suggesting the practice should be left for secondary school. “Evidence suggests that if a pupil is informed (explicitly or implicitly) through their academic placement that they are more or less able, this will influence their subsequent behaviours,” said Tammy Campbell, the report’s author, “and they will enact the role assigned, performing at a relatively higher or relatively lower level.” The study comes after the Institute of Fiscal Studies last year published research showing that children with summer birthdays are more likely to underachieve at school and miss out on places at top universities. 16

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

Due to growing demand from parents, Fleet Tutors, a supplementary education service provider, has now extended its range of services beyond tutoring to include independent educational psychologist assessments to identify dyslexia, dyscalculia and other learning difficulties. These assessments will help parents and pupils address their difficulties within the school environment and before the child loses confidence. Assessments are conducted by a fully qualified member of the British Psychological Society, with over twenty-five years’ experience and a comprehensive understanding of various learning difficulties. Appointments are available now at Fleet Tutor’s West London offices. Find out more at or call 0845 644 5452

Get walking Yes, it’s that time of year again. 2013’s Walk To School Week runs from 20 - 24 May, bringing together nearly one million schoolchildren, teachers and parents and promising to be the biggest and best yet! As part of National Walking Month, the campaign aims to teach children about the benefits of walking, with each day focussing on a different aspect of walking including safety, discovery, healthy, eco-friendly and social time. Take part in Strider’s 5-Day Walking Challenge and reinforce the benefits of walking, plus download puzzles, pledges and challenges at walk-to-school/walk-to-school-week. May/June 2013


May/June 2013

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


Education For children aged from 2 to 5 years. The nursery follows the Montessori method. We also offer, French, Ballet, Music, IT, Art and Drama. Full and part time sessions are available. Qualified and experienced teachers maintain a high standard of learning and care. * Excellent academic record * Caring and nurturing environment * Happy, considerate and confident children

Tel no: 0208 579 2304 Mobile no: 07956 228 959 Email: Website:


Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013


May/June 2013

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


What's On GOLDEN HINDE SE1 9DG 020 7403 0123 4, 25 and 31 May, 8, 15 and 29 June DRAKE FUN DAYS Find out all about Sir Frances Drake at 11am and 2pm. 11 May PIRATE FUN DAY Join the crew, raise the anchor and fire the cannons before trying to find the hidden treasure. 11am and 2pm 18, 27 May, 8, 15 and 29 June TUDOR FUN DAY Learn the history of the House of Tudor. 11am and 2pm.


DAYS OUT CHELSEA PHYSIC GARDEN SW3 4HS FAMILY ACTIVITY DAYS Pre-booking and pre-payment essential. Call 020 7349 6453 or e: 29 May A PASSION FOR PLANTS – GARDENING FOR BEGINNERS How to: grow and care for plants, take cuttings, plant seeds, use containers, make your own mini garden to look after and more. For age 5+ at 10.30am and 1pm. 30 May THE LOST ART OF NATURE PRINTING Explore a wonderful way of depicting and discovering plants and make your own impressions using fresh plants and oil-based inks on paper. For age 10+ at 10.30am

CHURCHILL WAR ROOMS SW1A 2AQ Located in the heart of Westminster, visitors can view this complex of historic rooms left exactly as they were in 1945. ONGOING IN 2013: UNDER-COVER – LIFE IN CHURCHILL'S BUNKER Visitors can hear the first-hand personal accounts of those who worked in the Cabinet War Rooms during the war. Learn what life and conditions were like underground and experience the authenticity and emotional resonance of walking through the corridors where Churchill made history.


Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

CUTTY SARK SE10 9NF 4 May FAMILY FUN WEEKEND: IMAGINARY JOURNEYS Help create a giant map of journeys across the sea. Where will your imagination take you? Drop-in workshop at 11.30am and 2pm, all ages. 5 May ANNUAL PIRATE PARTY A day of swashbuckling adventure with games and activities for all the family. Prizes for the best fancy dress. 11am-4pm, all ages. 27-31 May JOURNEYS ACROSS THE SEA Life for the sailors aboard the Cutty Sark, how they felt and what they carried with them. 27/28 May SEA CHESTS What would you take on a long sea voyage? Make a mini sea chest and pack your things inside. A drop-in workshop for all ages at 11.30am and 2pm. 29 May AHOY CAPTAIN! Join Captain Woodget, Cutty Sark’s longest serving master, and hear tales of his voyages around the world. 11am, 12noon, 1.30 and 2.30pm. All ages. 29-31 May I SPY… Create a colourful telescope to take on an adventure. What will you see? Drop-in workshop for all ages, 11.30am and 2pm. 1 and 2 June FAMILY FUN WEEKEND: SHIP HATS Make a spectacular ship hat decorated with the colours of the Portuguese flag to celebrate Portugal Day this month. Drop-in workshop for all ages, 11.30am and 2pm.

Until 3 Nov SECRETS OF THE ROYAL BEDCHAMBER An exhibition exploring the bedchambers of the 17th and 18th century royal court. 4-6 May, 1-2 June TUDOR COOKERY The cooks are toiling in the Kitchens of King Henry VIII, preparing the exotic dishes for his majesty as well as the plainer food for the court. 17 May ALCHEMY, ASTROLOGY AND TO BED WITH THE KING 6-9pm, part of Museums at Night. An evening of storytelling, alchemy and astrology with films, fairy tales, talks and tours for all the family. Adults £10, children £5. 25-27 May THE BIG PICNIC Pack your picnic hampers and blankets for a bank holiday weekend of family activities and live entertainment in the East Front Gardens.

HMS BELFAST SE1 2JH FAMILY ACTIVITIES: 11-12 May POINTS ON A COMPASS Hear stories from across a world map and handle some of the objects that helped the ship and her sailors on their sometimes treacherous journeys. 11am-12.30pm and 2-4pm. 25-31 May SAILOR TALES Join storytellers as they spin a dit (tell a story) about life on board the ship. 11am and 2pm. Drop-in. 22-23 June SLANG AT SEA Have a go at ‘Jack-speak’, and learn the origin of navy slang and popular expressions from life at sea. 11am and 2pm.

May/June 2013

May/June 2013

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


What's On KENSINGTON PALACE W6 4PX 4-6, 18, 25-27 May FIT TO RULE: HOW ROYAL ILLNESS CHANGED HISTORY Unearth the medical stories of the royal residents. Try your hand as a surgeon’s apprentice, performing amputations and autopsies, and have a smallpox ‘makeover’, before meeting a blood-sucking leech! 16 May MUSEUMS AT NIGHT: KIDS KENSINGTON SLEEPOVER A very special slumber party to celebrate Princess Victoria’s birthday party. 24-27 May CLASSICAL MUSIC ‘FESTIVAL’: A CELEBRATION OF VICTORIA AND ALBERT’S MUSIC Events and activities to celebrate the musical partnerships between Victoria, Albert and their close friends Mendelssohn and Wagner. MODERN ROYALS: SCHOOL HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES 24 May–2 June Fun family activities, including craft and storytelling based around the modern royals. From 21 June Featuring rare and exquisite dresses from HM Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Margaret and Diana Princess of Wales.

KEW BRIDGE STEAM MUSEUM TW8 0EN 11 and 12 May SCIENCE UNLEASHED Wacky and wild science magic for all the family. High voltage tesla coils will fill the Steam Hall with artificial lightning for danger-defying shows of pure science theatre. Also lots of science fun you can’t do at home: steam-powered can crushing, water rockets, giant soap bubbles and optical illusions. 16 May MUSEUMS AT NIGHT 6.30-10pm. Experience Kew Bridge Steam Museum by night. Live music, actors, artists and blacksmiths as well as workshops for kids.

KEW GARDENS TW9 3AB 25 May-3 Nov INCREDIBLES: A FESTIVAL TO FEED THE IMAGINATION Experience first-hand a selection of the 30,000 species we can feast on. Be part of a giant fruit salad installation by hiring a fruit-shaped boat (10-5pm), stroll around a floating pineapple on the Palm House pond, travel the globe in the gastronomic garden, join a tea party with a twist, bask in a beer garden, or attend incrEdibly interesting talks and workshops.

25 May-2 June A FAMILY ALLOTMENT 2-4pm. Explore many of the edible plants that both children and adults can easily grow at home. The whole family will get hands on with roots, leaves, stems and fruits, and will experience how it feels to be an esteemed Kew botanist by undertaking cool scientific investigations.

ODDS FARM PARK HP10 0LX May and June Children can bottle feed lambs and board the daily tractor and trailer rides for a fun tour of the farm. Meet the farmers, get close to the animals in the hands-on area-Stroke bunnies, hand feed goats and sheep, meet cheeky pigs and more. Also, there is a Giant Indoor Playbarn, with a massive adventure play area including a 4 lane Astra Slide, 2 large drop slides, a netted area with zig zag chicanes and tunnels, swinging ropes and a special Toddler and Under 5’s area. Outdoors, there is an Adventure Maze, Go-Karts, Log Play Areas and Crazy Golf. Daily from May half term SHEEP RACING RETURNS TO ODDS FARM PARK It’s back! With a specially built mini race track with jumps and bends, eager sheep with miniature jockeys, Sheep Racing is an event not to miss at Odds Farm Park. Plus, guess the winning sheep and take home a Medal!

OSTERLEY PARK AND HOUSE TW7 4RB 5 and 6 May BIRDS AND BEASTS ROAD SHOW A close encounter of birds and beasties including a tarantula, snake and giant millipede, as well as a fascinating and informative presentation and an exciting touchy-feely experience provided by the Hawking Centre. 11am-4pm. 18 May MUSEUMS AT NIGHT 6-9pm, Family tours. 25 May-2 June CHILDREN’S TRAIL Complete the trail and win a prize. £1 26 and 27 May FAMILY DISCOVERY DAYS Creative fun days for families. 12-3pm. 26 and 27 May MINI FARM Meet rabbits, lambs, pygmy goats, piglets and chickens. 12-4pm. 29 May OUTDOOR EXPLORER 12-3pm Outdoor themed activities for families 30 May CRAFT CART 12-3pm for ages 3-12. Craft activities for children.

TOWER OF LONDON EC3 Until 24 May RESTORATION AND REBELLION Live interpretation of bloody events after the Civil War. From 24 May COINS AND KINGS: THE ROYAL MINT AT THE TOWER Discover the history of the Mint at the Tower including Isaac Newton’s efforts to rid London of counterfeiters when he was Warden of the Mint. 25-27 May SILVER FOR THE SOVEREIGN A historical re-enactment of the new silver coins introduced by William III and overseen by Isaac Newton – an event which was beset by rivalries and violence. 28 May-7 July THE PEOPLE OF THE MINT The story of the lives of the men who lived and worked at the Mint. Where did the gold and silver come from and how was it turned into coins? 29-30 June FORTRESS TOWER: HAVE A GO ARCHERY Have you got what it takes defend the Tower of London against its enemies? Have you obeyed the law and spend every Sunday practicing with the English Longbow instead of wasting time at football? If not, you may need a refresher course from the Golden Arrow Archery group.

THE LONDON WETLANDS CENTRE SW13 9WT 25 May–2 June HALF TERM FAMILY ACTIVITIES See newly hatched fluffy ducklings taking their first swim. Learn about their development, behaviour and habitat. Also try egg tempera painting and pond dipping On 25 and 26 May, listen to talks about tropical butterflies. 15 June onwards PERFECT POND SEASON Take part in a series of activities including wildlife surveys, experiments and shows. Storytelling sessions will focus on particular underwater animals and after each story you’ll be able to have a go at creating the animal using recycled materials.

ZSL LONDON ZOO NW1 4RY 18 and 19 May ZSL SPECIAL CHILDREN'S DAY ZSL welcomes children with special needs and their families and friends on this day to meet zoo characters, dance to the Dixie Swing Band with extra staff and volunteers on hand for assistance. Plenty of hands-on activities including an art and craft zone, sensory storytelling, Makaton signed events, and a chill out zone, a chance to meet live animals and discover all about the natural world.

There are lots more things to do in the 'What's On' section of our website. To advertise in future issues of Families West magazine please email or phone 020 8930 4707 22

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013

What's On MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES BANK OF ENGLAND MUSEUM EC2R 8AH Weekdays to 10 May THE HUGUENOT LEGACY The first Governor of the Bank of England, Sir John Houblon, was the grandson of a Huguenot refugee. This exhibition celebrates the achievements of the Huguenots and their early connection with the Bank. 10am-4pm, free. 17 May MUSEUMS AT NIGHT A rare opportunity for an evening visit as part of the nationwide Museums at Night campaign. 5.30pm-9pm FREE 28-31 May MONEY TALKS Well known historical figures that feature on the Bank's notes (Charles Darwin, Boulton and Watt) will "come alive" to talk about their life and times. Also presentations on banknotes in the Museum cinema at 12:15pm and 1pm and a banknotes quiz with a prize draw. 11am - 4pm

BRITISH MUSEUM WC1B 3DG To 19 May. ICE AGE ART: ARRIVAL OF THE MODERN MIND Masterpieces of Ice Age sculpture, ceramics, drawing and personal ornament from across Europe To 29 Sept. LIFE AND DEATH IN POMPEII AND HERCULANEUM The life and times of the people of Pompeii and Herculaneum - from the bustling street to the intimate spaces of a Roman home, the exhibition will look at daily life prior to the devastating volcanic eruption of nearly 2000 years ago. The focus will be on the ordinary Roman and the realities of home-life and, uniquely, will include material from both Pompeii and Herculaneum. Weekends in May and June Workshops for children take place every weekend, usually between 11am & 3pm. Detailed listings: 27-31 May VILLAS, VINES AND VOLCANOES A week of family activities inspired by Pompeii and Herculaneum. 11am to 5pm, free.

May/June 2013





EXTRAORDINARY STORIES ABOUT ORDINARY THINGS Six design stories offering a diverse look at design To 7 Jul. DESIGNS OF THE YEAR 2013 Showcasing the most innovative and imaginative designs from around the world, spanning seven categories: Architecture, Digital, Fashion, Furniture, Graphics, Transport and Product. 19 May and 16 June CHAMPION CHAIRS 2-4.30pm, Explore the museum’s range of innovative chairs and then create your own miniature chair. For ages 5-11, £5. Advanced booking required

FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE MUSEUM SE1 7EW Every Weds in May and June MISS NIGHTINGALE SAID... An illustrated talk examining the incredible life and achievements of Florence Nightingale. 3pm. WORKHOUSE – SEGREGATED LIVES Explores the experience of the unfortunate inmates of the workhouse in nineteenth century Britain. 10am to 5pm

FOUNDLING MUSEUM WC1N 1AZ To 19 May. FATE, HOPE AND CHARITY Discover the untold stories of the Foundling Hospital tokens left by mothers with their babies at the Hospital between c.1741-1760.

28 May-1 June INCREDIBLE INVERTEBRATES Come face to face with some of deadly scorpions, beautiful octopi and incredible sea mice. Hands-on specimen based activities for all ages. Drop in between 1pm and 5pm. 5 June-31 Aug SCULPTURE SEASON Sculpture students from the Slade School of Fine Art at UCL have been invited to create works in response to the Museum’s collections. Free 1-5pm.

GUNNERSBURY PARK MUSEUM W3 8LQ 28 May THIRSTY WORK How does our water get so clean? What do filterbeds do? Why were they invented and how did they help cure London of cholera? Build your own Victorian filterbeds and explore these questions through experimentation. 11.30am and 1.30pm. 28 and 30 May KITCHEN SCIENCE A fun, science-based tour of the Victorian Kitchens, exploring how the Victorians used water to prepare, cook and store food. Tours at 11.30am and 1.30pm.

Workshops for children:

29 May MINI-BEASTS Make your own ‘mini-beast’ using materials and embroidery. Sessions at 11am and 1.30pm. £2.50 per child, advanced booking essential on 020 8992 2247.

28 May CHILDREN TAKE BACK THE FOUNDLING HOSPITAL 10.30am-4.30pm, drop-in, free. Join artist Daniel Wallis to create a large paper artwork inspired by the story of the Foundling Hospital and objects in the Collection.

29 May ON SAFARI See what mini-beasts you can track down at a Gunnersbury Park safari. 11am and 1.30pm. Advanced booking essential on 020 8992 2247. Free.

22 June FAMILY TEA PARTY 10.30am-4.30pm, drop-in, free. Create your own paper teacup and saucer complete with secret good deed message in this 3D workshop using paper construction, collage and pen and ink.

30 May FLOATING FLOWERS Make beautiful floating flowers to help recreate and decorate Gunnersbury Park’s missing ponds. 11.30am and 1.30pm, free.

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR


What's On LONDON TRANSPORT MUSEUM WC2E 7BB Until Oct POSTER ART 150 – LONDON UNDERGROUND’S GREATEST DESIGNS Since its first graphic poster commission in 1908, London Underground has developed a reputation for commissioning outstanding poster designs. 17 May FRIDAY LATE – BRIGHTEST LONDON Celebrate the Poster Art 150 exhibition and Kew Gardens edible festival as you party Museums At Night style. 6.45pm-10pm £8/£6 27 May – 2 June POSTER PEOPLE – HALF TERM WORKSHOPS: 11am and 2pm STORYTIME Cedric Shopping bags is on a trip around London but he can’t find any peace and quiet! Come and meet Cedric and the poster people he encounters on his journey. Find out about the stop that was missed, an adventure on the escalator – and see if Cedric will ever find somewhere to escape from the hustle and bustle. Open to all families but most suitable for ages 3-7. 11.30am and 2.30pm MAKE AND TAKE Work with air-hardening clay to create your own tiny Poster Person and bring it to life. Make it walk, dance, clap or wave and use it to tell your own stories, before taking it home to dry off. Open to all families but most suitable for ages 4-12.

NATIONAL ARMY MUSEUM SW3 4HT VICTORIAN SOLDIERS ACTION ZONE Quizzes, games and hands-on activities help you learn about life as a Victorian Soldier and the part they played in the shaping of Britain’s Empire


Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

KID’S ZONE A new children’s play area exploring aspects of army life from camping to clothing, with soft play, art and crafts and dressing-up costumes. 18 May MUSEUMS AT NIGHT The Museum opens its doors after hours. 6-9pm, free.

5 May, 2 and 30 June Super Signs Lion, lamb, lily or peacock? Join artist Jo Lewis to explore the superheroes of long ago – then create your own by drawing inspiration from pictures of saints and their symbols.

15 and 16 June BUILD YOUR OWN... From tanks to trebuchets, use your engineering skills to create magnificent machinery in miniature to compete for first place! Activities include rifle training and rock climbing, suitable for age 7+

STUDIO SUNDAYS are hands-on workshops that start in the Gallery, followed by a studio session (2 hours). 12 May, 9 and 23 June Brocade to Broccoli Explore patterns and textures so lifelike you think you could touch them.

Every Sat in May and June A SOLDIER'S LIFE IN... Drop in, one-hour Saturday workshops to learn about the life of a soldier. Workshops run every Saturday afternoon. 2 and 3.30pm. Each week will explore a different theme through handling objects, story-telling and craft activities. For ages 5-11.

WORKSHOPS: 26-28 May Gold, Bones and Mementos 11am-1pm and 2-4pm. Relic can mean ‘something left behind’. Join Harriet Hill to create your own memento inspired by your talents, favourite people, places and heroes. Take it home or leave it behind on our relic mural in the Gallery! For ages 5-11.

NATIONAL GALLERY WC2N 5DN Every Sun in May and June FAMILY SUNDAYS Activities designed for families to enjoy and learn together, 11am and 3pm MAGIC CARPET STORY-TELLING for children aged 2-5. Sundays 10.30-11am and 11.30am –12pm. Fly away on the magic carpet, coming to land in front of a different painting each day. On 26 May and 9 June there will be Musical Magic Carpets sessions. DRAWING SUNDAY explore gallery paintings as inspiration for your art. For ages 5-11. Sundays 11am and 2pm. Drop-in. Make a room of your own! Learn how to create space and make things look far away in this drawing workshop.

27 May Talk and Play Meet Catherine the Marquise, a costumed character brought to life, for singing, talking and playing inspired by a 1691 painting by Pierre Mignard. For ages 2-5. 27 May Stay and Play Drop-in session for children under 5 and their adults. Stay and play with your child in this designated space inspired by Pierre Mignard’s painting. 11am-3pm. 28 May Drawing Stories Tell a story through art-making and play. 10.30-11.30am. For ages 2-5. 6 June WALK AND TALK A themed journey through the collection where gallery staff will walk, talk and bring paintings alive! 12.30–1.30pm

May/June 2013

What's On NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY WC2H 0HE Until 27 May MAN RAY PORTRAITS Over 150 vintage prints from Man Ray’s career taken between 1916 and 1968. 18 May STORY-TELLING FOR FAMILIES 10.30am and 1.30pm for ages 3+ Storytelling followed by a fun art activity. 18 May FAMILY ART WORKSHOP 11.30am and 2.30pm for ages 5+ Explore portraits in the Collection, followed by an art activity. 27-31 May PORTRAITS IN SCULPTURE 11am-4pm. Build, shape, construct and create during a week of family activities inspired by contemporary and traditional sculpture in the Collection. During the week there will be a series of ticketed events and drop-in sessions taking place.

NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM SW7 5BD Until 15 Sept. SENSATIONAL BUTTERFLIES Dive into the tropical butterfly house to take on butterfly challenges, try out fun games and exciting activities as you discover one of the planet’s most amazing life cycles. £4-£16 Until 8 Sep. EXTINCTION: NOT THE END OF THE WORLD? Giant deer, bizarre insects and super-sized birds – millions of species that once roamed the planet are no longer around. 17 May and 7 June DINO SNORES Ever wondered what goes on at the Natural History Museum at night? 7-11 years. 7pm till morning, torchlit trails through the museum, live animal shows and more. 23 May EARTH'S BIGGEST MASS EXTINCTION A discussion of mass extinction events. 2.30pm to 3pm, free.

Theatre and Ballet AMBASSADORS THEATRE WC2H 9ND May and June STOMP Celebrating its 10th sensational year in London, Stomp is now fresher, faster and funnier than before. 3pm and 8pm

26 May MARVELLOUS MOTHS What's the difference between a moth and a butterfly? 12.30 and 2.30pm FREE 29 May A NIGHT IN THE JUNGLE Sleepless nights are an occupational hazard when your job is collecting moths. 12.30 and 2.30pm, free.

VICTORIA AND ALBERT MUSEUM SW7 2RL Until 28 Jul DAVID BOWIE IS Handwritten lyrics, original costumes. Photography. Set designs, album artwork and rare performance material from the past five decades. Advanced booking advised. Until 13 Jul TREASURES OF THE ROYAL COURTS The majesty of the courts of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I to Ivan the Terrible and the early Romanovs in a major exhibition celebrating 500 years of exchange between Britain and Russia. 25 May-2 June DIGITAL KIDS An opportunity for children to use Garage band music to create their own track for an album. Free, drop-in. Ages 5-10 25 May-2 June THE IMAG-INATION STATION Children will be able to create their own album cover using a variety of materials. Free. Ages 3-5, 11am, 1 and 3pm. 27-31 May MAKE IT: MUSIC ICON With professional photo-grapher, producer and DJ Edward Otchere, children are able to get the pop star look with costume, make up and photography. £7.50 per child. Advance booking essential. Ages 5-12, 10.30am -12.30pm and 2.30-4.30pm. FREE ART FUN-BACK-PACKS, ACTIVITY CART AND ANIMAL BAGS Families can pick up an activity Back-Pack, get creative at Drop-inDesign or go on a gallery adventure trail. Free, drop-in. Suitable for children aged 4 to 11 Activity Cart: Fantastic hands-on art fun for children to

11 May MISUNDERSTOOD MONSTERS 11am and 1pm followed by Messy Play session. Georgie and Squeezy are on a dangerous mission to capture monsters and overcome their fear of spiders, crocodiles and aliens. For ages 4-9.

create collages and pictures to take home. Agent Animal bag: A sensory activity bag that has been developed especially for under 5s. Each bag contains an audio map and fabric cubes.

THE WALLACE COLLECTION W1U 3BN 5 May THE LITTLE DRAW Free drop-in drawing workshop for all ages, taking inspiration from some of the fantastic beasts and monsters in the Collection, 1.30-4.30pm. Find out more at 29 May GOOD GODS 10.30am-12.15pm and 2-3.45pm for age 6+ Go on a quest around the Museum to find out about different gods, heroes and monsters and create your own puppet. Free. 31 May POP UP FANCY FURNITURE 10.30am-12.30pm or 2-4pm. Design a room filled with pop-up furniture from the Wallace Collection and make your own 3D paper project. Booking essential on 020 7563 9527 or For age 7+ 1 June RNIB FAMILY DAY: BATTLES AND BALLADS 11am-4pm, for blind and partially sighted children aged 6-12 years and their families. Discover the stories hidden in the paintings at the Wallace Collection with author Bridget Crowley and work with animators Rus Pearson and Caroline Welsh to create your own battle songs to be performed on the Wigmore Hall stage at the end of the day. To book call James Risdon, RNIB Music Officer on 020 7391 2273 or 15 June FAMILY PUBLIC TOUR Explore the collection through new eyes and handle objects as you are guided through the intriguing corridors and magnificent rooms, 2.30pm, free, advanced booking essential.

28/29 May THEATRE IN THE SQUARE – SPLASH! From a puddle to the ocean, from a tap to the toilet, water is everywhere we go. Sometimes we don’t have enough of it, other times we can’t get away from it. Love it or hate it, we can’t survive without it. Get your umbrella out and put your wellies on to journey through the cycle of water.

THE LILIAN BAYLISS EC1R 4TN 17 May VARMINTS A brand new children’s dance theatre show, which tells the poignant tale of one small creature’s struggle to preserve a world in danger of being lost forever. Fri 10.30am/Sat 2.30 & 7.00pm

LONDON PALLADIUM W1F 7TF Ongoing A CHORUS LINE Captivating song, riveting drama and stunning choreography. For age 10+

LYRIC HAMMERSMITH W6 0QL 4 May EGG AND SPOON 10.30 and 11.30am, 1.30 and 2.30pm followed by Messy Play session. In this highly interactive adventure, make friends while you play peek-aboo in our puddles and dance at the butterfly party. For ages 2-5. May/June 2013

18 May MY BROTHER THE ROBOT 11am and 1pm followed by Messy Play session. All Bobbie wants is a little brother to play with so her dad works day and night to build her one. But when Bobbie gets into danger one day, will her little robot brother come to her rescue? For ages 4-9.

LYRIC THEATRE W1D 7ES Until 15 Sept THRILLER – LIVE A spectacular, high octane show celebrating the career of Michael Jackson, and the Jackson 5.

PEACOCK THEATRE WC2A 2HT 17 May UGLY DUCKLING Northern Ballet’s first production especially for children. 11am and 1pm Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR





W9 2PF



4-6, 11, 12, 18, 19 May THE HARE AND THE TORTOISE AND OTHER TALES FROM AESOP Get ready for a collection of marionettes that tell a selection of tales from Aesop. 11am and 3pm

6 May CRIES OF LONDON: THE MONDAY FAMILY WORKSHOP Using the early 'cries' of the London street traders as a starting point, join this family workshop to learn and share songs from neighbourhoods far and wide. For ages 7+ 11am and 2pm. 25 May SPIN Join Apples & Snakes' wordwizards as they cook up wonderful ways to play with words. Top-class rappers, poets and storytellers send the audience spiralling into a poetry revolution. SPIN is an interactive performance aimed at ages 5+

25-26 May and through June FOWL PLAY In this farmyard adventure the arrival of a foal causes excitement among the animals. 11am and 3pm.

REGENTS PARK OPEN AIR THEATRE NW1 4NU 16 May-15 June TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel sees racial injustice envelop a small-town community. 2.15pm, 7.45pm. 20 June-20 Jul PRIDE AND PREJUDICE As the Bennet sisters haplessly search for love in Jane Austen’s ultimate romantic comedy, it is Mr Darcy who unwittingly finds his match.

RICHMOND THEATRE TW9 1QJ 25 and 26 May MY FIRST CINDERELLA Everyone’s favourite ragsto-riches story in a beautifully adapted version for young audiences. Produced by English National Ballet, Prokofiev’s score is accompanied with narration. On 25 May, there will be a pre-show family activity session free to tickets holders at 10am, 1pm and 4pm. 27 May SHAOLIN WARRIORS – RETURN OF THE MASTER This breathtaking show continues the story of the warrior, and depicts the rarely-seen Kung Fu masters’ feats of strength and skill, using Buddhist Meditation and rigorous martial arts training. 31 May FAMILY TOURS Take a peek behind the scenes and learn the secrets of the Richmond Theatre - a fun and informative tour aimed at families with children aged 8+

25-26 May SOUTHBANK CENTRE’S FAIRY TALE WALK FOR CHILDREN Rachel Rose Reid will lead an expedition to explore where Southbank Centre’s monsters play, to find a friendly giant, and find out if the café serves talking potatoes. Interactive stories and songs from one of the UK’s leading poetry and spoken word artists. For age 5+. 27 May CONTEMPLATING THE HONEY BEE The wonders of the beehive, the flowers that bees forage on to make honey, and the tools of the beekeepers’ trade up close. Children will also have the opportunity to make a beeswax-coated artwork celebrating the honeybee. 11am 27 May TRANSLATION FOR YOUNG BEGINNERS Budding translators of all ages are welcome to this free workshop, part of Hands-on Translate-a-thon. No knowledge of French required.3pm. 27-30 May DOGS DON’T DO BALLET A small dog named Biff, who thinks that he is not a dog, but a ballerina. Beautiful puppets, well-loved ballet music, and dazzling comedy. For ages 2-6. 11am and 2pm.


31 May and 1 June MY FATHER AND OTHER SUPERHEROES Set across continents and eras, it follows one man's struggle to come to terms with the responsibilities of being a parent and his confrontation with his own father's absence. Suitable for ages 8+

28 May FAMILY IGNITE – PRINCES AND PRINCESSES A fun packed family concert performed by the Hall's very own Albert's Band. Children are encouraged to come in their favourite regal outfits. 12noon and 2.30pm

1 June SUPERHERO RUN WITH CHARLIE DARK A superhero run around the Southbank Centre site. With pop up performances along the way, and a prize for the best superhero costume. All running abilities and ages welcome. 11am.



25 May HOOK, LINE AND SINGER: A FAMILY SING-ALONG WITH CERYS MATTHEWS Everyone can sing and Cerys Matthews wants people to stop feeling so shy about it. She has spent her life collecting songs wherever she goes, from Wales to Nashville, and her new book of traditional family songs gathers the ones everyone grew up with, along with favourites from around the world. A special family singalong for all ages.

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

From 18 May CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY Roald Dahl's deliciously dark tale of young Charlie Bucket and the mysterious confectioner Willy Wonka in a brand new musical directed by Sam Mendes. 2.30pm and 7.30pm.

UNICORN THEATRE SE1 2HZ Until 9 May ROMEO & JULIET A highly innovative production of Shakespeare’s enduring and tragic tale of young love with a skilful intertwining of the original text with contemporary language creating a world in which the lovers and their fate speak directly to a 21st century audience. For age 13+ 21 May-2 June SOMETHING VERY FAR AWAY Kepler is an ordinary man whose wife Tomasina is killed in a tragic circus accident. Grieving, he builds a spaceship so that he can travel into space and look back on his happy memories on earth. A strange and beautiful exploration of sadness, mortality and wonder. The show is animated in front of the audience and is told through projection, puppetry and music with no words at all. For age 8+ (Off West End 2013 Award winner for Best Young People’s production.) 28 May-2 June YOU’RE NOT MY FRIEND ANYMORE A funny and poignant look at the ups and downs, ins and outs of friendship. For age 3+

16 June MY FATHER AND OTHER SUPERHEROS Celebrate Father’s Day at the Unicorn with this heart-warming story about the trials and tribulations of fatherhood with an optional family brunch before the show. For age 8+ 12-22 June TUBE (for children with profound and multiple learning disabilities and for those on the autism spectrum). In a wonderland conjured up from a fabulous variety of tubes – tubes filled with sound, tubes glistening with kaleidoscopic colours, tubes that puff out gentle breezes and the scents of the natural world – young participants will bounce, swing, spin and sway in luxurious leaf chairs. Tube is a highly interactive experience, with performers adapting to the specific requirements of each individual in the audience. A range of material will be available online to help prepare young people for the live experience. Each child must be accompanied by an adult. For age 3-11. 18-23 June ASTON’S STONES This is a story about how easy it is to love and the ability to see the value in small things. When Aston starts bringing stones home, his patient and understanding parents don’t mind. But after a while they start to worry – perhaps it’s time to find a better home for Aston’s new friends. For under 5’s. May/June 2013


The 135 Spring Fair


A great day out for all the family

Saturday 11th May 2013 2pm to 4.30pm FREE ENTRY Christ the Saviour Church, Ealing Broadway Come along and enjoy the fun!

• Craft Stalls • Tombola • Face-Painting • Refreshments • Homemade Cakes and Biscuits • Fancy Dress Competition • Bouncy Castle • Raffle and more! All profits donated to Ealing Churches’ Winter Night Shelter (135’s chosen charity 2013/14)


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May/June 2013

Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR



Families West PO Box 32231 London W5 1JR

May/June 2013

Families London West Issue 86 May - June 2013  
Families London West Issue 86 May - June 2013  

Families London West Magazine for May & June 2013