No, most of our sessions run all year round except for Public Holidays and over the Christmas Break. Most of our sessions welcome older siblings during the school holidays. Check your local timetable for session details.
Yes, while our sessions are aimed at birth to 5 years, we welcome older siblings during school holidays. To keep things interesting for the older ones, we run a Holiday Hits session during the holidays which include popular songs from our usual themes with a few party hits thrown in for good measure. We do however, ask parents/carers to ensure that their older children are mindful of the babies when moving around the room. This is a lovely opportunity for them to see what their younger sibling gets up to while they are at school and for them have fun together.
Not at all, music plays a valuable part in children's development - research shows that early exposure to singing, listening to and playing music can enhance a whole range of educational skills such as language and numerical skills, fine motor skills and an awareness of space. Our sessions are also a great opportunity to increase your child's social awareness, especially if they don't spend much time with other people or in groups. Ragdolly Annas' sessions are a great opportunity to build and reinforce a positive bond between you and your child without the interruption of the washing machine, hoover or phone :-) As a new mummy it can be very lonely sometimes, especially if your friends or family don't have children of a similar age. We encourage a welcoming, friendly atmosphere at our all of our sessions and have seen many friendships grow and flourish between our mummies and carers. Babies are welcome at our mixed group sessions where our session plans contain a mix of songs for all age ranges ensuring that the babies can enjoy the whole class too. We also run a specially designed baby session aimed at non movers. Click here for more details.
Check out what the experts say about why music and rhyme is an essential part of our children's development.
Some children may not be able to concentrate for the full length of the session or may be too shy to join in at first. It may take a few sessions for your child to settle in but once they become familiar with the session format, new surrounding and mixing with the other children they usually participate with great enthusiasm!
Just because they are not up dancing/singing doesn't mean that they are not absorbing what we are doing. We have a number of children who just like to sit with their parents/carers during the sessions but once they are home, they sing and dance to all of the “Ragdolly Annas” favourites.
Remember every child is different, so long as you and your child are enjoying yourself it doesn't matter if they are dancing at the front with us or cuddling up with you watching it all happen.
None of us are born singers or dancers and we understand that you can feel quite self conscious if you haven't done this before but don't worry. Many of our 'grown ups' attend their first session feeling a little silly at first, but once they realise that everyone else is doing the same thing and the only one watching and listening to you is your little one, who by the way thinks that you are a super star, they all feel a lot more comfortable joining in next time. At Ragdolly Annas, we are not professional singers or dancers but we do know how to entertain and encourage your little ones and deliver a fun and friendly session.
We take cash only at our sessions. Sessions are run on a pay as you go basis as we understand that children are unpredictable and plans will always change due to sleep patterns, appointments and sickness etc. While some of our sessions may require booking, payment always remains pay as you go.
We have created our sessions as we would want them to be as mums ourselves ensuring a fun but relaxed and welcoming environment for all our families to attend.
While being lots of fun, our sessions are structured around themed session plans which ensures that each of our chosen songs or rhymes have an educational benefit linking to the Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework.
We make a special effort to interact with all the children throughout our sessions trying to remember as many names as possible to make them feel included and build our own bond with each child. Prior to each song or rhyme, the session leader will explain a little bit about the song/rhyme and the associated actions so each age group know how to join in. Lots of encouragement will be given throughout the session, especially praising the children's participation no matter how small.
All our songs/rhymes have fun actions while some are supported by a physical prop which the children can come and collect from the session leader. To help build their confidence, we encourage the children to choose which rhymes will be sung by selecting from specific rhyme cards.
While chairs are available if needed, we encourage parents/carers to sit on the floor (on mats) with their children as this increases the learning experience and fun for the children as you are at their eye level.
If you're worried about not being able to sing or that you may look silly when you're doing the actions don't, the only person watching you is your child and to them you are the best singer and best dancer in the world. The more you join in, the more the child will benefit from the session. Plus everyone else is doing the same thing :-)
Have a sneak peak at one of our sessions:-
Check out some of our testimonials to see what other parents/carers have to say about Ragdolly Annas.