Rebecca, a qualified primary school teacher, set up London’s Little Thinkers to promote an educational and engaging London life for children. Here, she has written a brilliant preview of what’s on in London for kids this half term. Please mention London’s Little Thinkers when booking or enquiring about any of the below.
- To celebrate the centenary of Roald Dahl’s birth, The Southbank Centre presents Imagine Children’s Festival 2016. This festival is bursting with exciting events. From 10th-21st February enjoy the best of children’s theatre, literature and music. The day starts at 10.30am and finishes at 4pm; during this time you can join in a range of fun and educational workshops, including some free activities. Lift your nose out of your books and meet their authors and illustrators, such as Judith Kerr, Laura Dockrill and Candy Gourlay and Holly Smale. They’ll talk about the characters that fuel little ones’ imaginations, including the titular big cat in Judith Kerr’s The Tiger Who Came to Tea. Suitable for children up to 12 years old. Visit: https://www.southbankcentre.co.uk/whatson/festivals-series/imagine-childrens-festival.
- Don’t miss this imaginative half term ‘Volcanoes and Islands Camp’ by Mini-Engineers, a children’s ‘Innovation and Inspiration Lab’ in London. This two-day workshop teaches children what makes up our planet and how our Earth works, while building a churning volcano using more than 4,500 Lego pieces. Venues include: St John’s Wood (15th February), Wimbledon (18th February) and Chelsea (18th February). If you can’t make this workshop, why not look at what else is on offer at Mini-Engineers, including weekly nursery classes. Suitable for children aged 5-11. Visit: https://mini-engineers.com/.
- Abi Elphinstone, author of The Dreamsnatcher and The Shadow Keeper, leads this special guest creative writing workshop at Chelsea Young Writers. Each workshop runs for three hours a day, with a 15-minute break. In the session, the group will do a series of small exercises leading up to writing a short story. From catapults and fortune-telling balls to ancient runes and amulets, Abi will show a variety of exciting and unusual objects linked to her book to get children thinking about characters, setting and plot. Suitable for children aged 7-11. Visit: https://www.chelseayoungwriters.co.uk/creative-writing/cw-holiday-workshops/.
- Kids go free – this half term, The Shard is offering free entry for children. This unique family trip offers breathtaking views of London. Book a ticket to visit The View from The Shard Monday 15th to Sunday 21st of February, and for each adult, 2 children (aged 4-15) go free. What better way to explore and discuss the London landmarks with your little ones? An activity sheet for kids can be collected from the ticket desk after you arrive, or downloaded from the booking site. Visit: https://www.theviewfromtheshard.com/en/tickets-packages/whatson.
- London’s Children’s Book Swap will be taking place across London on the 13th February from 11am-5pm. Recycle and renew your current library; bring along a pre-loved book and swap it for a new favourite read. This free book swap will be hosted by more than 50 family-friendly venues across London including the V&A Museum of Childhood, Polka Theatre, Southbank Centre and Unicorn Theatre. For one day only thousands of books will be swapped between mini book lovers. Alongside the book swap, each venue will host an action-packed day of free activities. Have fun! Visit: https://www.discover.org.uk/about/article/london-childrens-book-swap-is-taking-over-london.
- Play Doh workshop at The V&A Museum of Childhood. From 15-19th February you can explore the squash, squish and squelch of Play Doh, now 60 years old, and shape your own childhood adventure. Join artist Amy Brown to mould a drawing that comes to life through animation, or work with artist Helen Rousseau in a modelling extravaganza. Enjoy these drop-in daily activities but be aware some workshops may require pre booking. Activities range from free to £5. Visit: https://www.vam.ac.uk/moc/events/february-half-term-activities/
- Does your little one love Star Wars? If so, don’t miss the Gambado (Chelsea) cookie-decorating class. On Tuesday 16th February, from 1-3pm enjoy an afternoon of cookie decorating and fun in this child-friendly haven. Email:Chelsea@gambado.com, or call: 020 7384 1635.
- Looking for a Valentine’s Day activity that will fuel your child’s imagination? Hosted by award-winning BKD baking school, kids will love this creative and messy monster-making class on Sunday 14th February from 11am-12.30pm. Your child will be provided with freshly-baked cupcakes and all of the components needed to create your very own fuzzy Valentine’s monster. Where: The Hoxton, Shoreditch. Visit: www.bkd-london.com.
- The Bus King Theatre strikes again with another entertaining and comical puppet performance, The Disillusioned Illusionist. This magical production will be showing daily at 2pm and 4pm from 13th-21st February, suitable for all ages. How much? £5 child, £7.50 adult. Where: Spitalfields, London, nearest tube Liverpool Street. After the performance visit the upstairs of the London bus to make your own magic box in a creative workshop for all ages. Visit: www.buskingtheatre.london, or call 07935 462 605 to book.
- Half Term Filmmaking Workshop with Quick Brown Fox. This workshop is perfect for children aged 8 and older interested in shooting and editing videos. Choose from one of two days: Tuesday 16th February, or Wednesday 17th February from 10.30-13.30. Costs £35 per session. Quick Brown Fox will provide all equipment and they also provide lunch (sandwich, fruit, crisps and drink) for £3.00 or you can provide your child’s own packed lunch. Visit: https://www.homeandkids.co.uk/Home-and-Kids-Events.
A little extra secret sprinkling:
Looking for creative ideas to do together at home with the kids? Read this creative blog written by a modern-day Mary Poppins: https://mybaba.com/author/nannyanita/. Nanny Anita trained at the famous Norland College, Bath, and has more than 12 years of experience with children. She never fails to impress me with her imaginative and creative ideas that children love. I often use her arty recommendations in class and they never disappoint. If you are a Little London magazine reader then don’t miss her Get Crafty column.
For more information please email Rebecca.
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