This is the first blog since the holidays. It feels like such a long time since I've posted here!
Big Red Bus Club is opening it's doors once again after the Summer break. We're all raring to go with the new academic year and very excited to see everyone!
A new session which started today (Monday), a new addition to our timetable is Sing, Sign and Stories.
This is one of my all time favourite story books. The pictures are gorgeous and the story is brilliant, about how even if you are small/young you can still achieve great things. Which is a great message for the kids who come to Play Plus, because they are all brilliantly capable of achieving things, like signing for the first time in a session (there was a slight tear in my eye when this happened today). So if you have never read it before grab a copy and read it with your little ones. (Don't worry I haven't completely given the story away!)
Meet our Snail and Whale, they helped us with our story today. We had magnifying glasses to find the snails 'itchy foot'.
I was so excited about today's session, and it didn't disappoint. 'Monkey Puzzle' by Julia Donaldson is a fab book. I won't give the story away if you've never read it, but monkey and the butterfly explore the jungle looking for his mum, and they eventually find her.
my favourite part of the morning was signing our way through the story and we found out what the signs for bat and butterfly were, which we had great fun practicing.Read more
The weekend brought about some fun, yet very cold weather. Our fearless volunteers made it through the snow/rain and we set everything up ready to go for this morning, but everyone else was very sensible and stayed at home in the warm hopefully tucked up under a duvet watching a nice Christmas film!!
But even the volunteers had fun today as we had Helen from 'More than Words Charity' come and spend some time with us, as she shared some Makaton signs with us. She was also very helpful and made some video's of some signs so you can see the basic signs almost in person!
I was personally inspired this morning and was reminded about the huge benefits of Makaton not only for the children but for the parents too. Makaton can be used with children with additional needs and those without. One of the benefits is you can speak the word and do the sign at the same time so when learning words, the speech and pictorial are embedded, helping all children learn the words in whatever way they learn best.
Another great benefit is, you can start using signs straight away (once you've learnt a few core ones) and help communication between yourself and your child. Minimising communication frustrations on both sides. Makaton can be used in everyday communication as well as in songs and during stories, so even more ways to help develop communication. For more information visit makaton.org, where they have a number of articles on the benefits of Makaton, and who it would benefit (which is all of us in a nutshell!)
We have been using Makaton in Play Plus, we can now sign hello and what our names are, and we also enjoy signing along to some of the songs we sing, and the stories. Adults and Children alike enjoy sharing in this experience together.
Play Plus is now on Holiday until 8th January 2018 where we will be reading the Smartest Giant in Town and thinking about being Kind.
But until then...