Termly Training March 2012
This is what we covered in the Termly Training in March 2012
Walk About Talk About
- Aimed at developing early speech and two way conversation, so remind parents that they must leave space in the ‘talk’ for the baby to gurgle back.
- As there are lots of laminates you could save time by giving a couple to some waiting parents at the start of the class to stick up on walls.
- When the parents are off talking to their child, stand back and don’t interrupt.
- If you notice one to two parents rushing through and moving on to the next picture too quickly, wait until you are all back in a circle and walking around to the song, then remind the whole class to take their time and ask further questions, rather than speeding through. This way no parent is singled out.
- Though the song has 4 repetitions, you may find that three is sufficient.
- Could stick the pointer sheet up next to the pictures if your parents are struggling to know what to talk about.
- Some franchisees have done this element sitting down in a circle, particularly if the babies are very young. Parents pass around the pictures while chorus plays, then when it stops they show the baby the card they have and talk about that one.
- Speech therapists are very keen on this activity as they recognise the benefits for speech development, so if your children’s centre or nursery is trying to improve this area, remember to talk about this activity with them.
- Primarily for babies but walkers to 2 also love it.
- Aimed at developing body awareness
- The version which includes nod, jump, touch floor etc is usually saved for the walkers to two and is better done standing with much bigger movements.
- These songs work really well for parties as the props are exciting and it gets even the shyest children involved.
- Shaker song – practice the jumping feet wide and then together during the intro as its quite difficult for children to do.
- When singing ‘do you think its funny’ and it can fun to shake the shakers by your bottom
- Take three weeks per song so the children can learn and enjoy each one.
- Texture is important in a class, so remember to vary your song tempos when planning.
- Castanets – get them to count as they tap. On the slower ‘1, 2’ make the moves big ‘like a crocodile’ to help slow the children down.
- On the musical interlude you could turn around, taping your castanets up high, like a flamenco dancer – you can even shout ‘Oh lay!’
- Parachute song – make sure you tell the children and parents that this song is all about working together and that you wont be using the parachute in the normal way, so they have to listen very carefully to the instructions. Otherwise all the children will start trying to get under it or shaking it as they normally do.
- Keep the parachute turning in the same direction during the song or it can get confusing.
When buying new props, try to always get the same style and same colour. Variety will generally lead to arguments!
There is a lot of new material which needs to be drip fed into the term carefully to ensure a good balance of new and familiar class content. To help, Trish has done a complete implementation plan which you can use to help your planning. By week 12 you should all be doing your MAD Sport party, which will be a fully themed class. The plan suggests keeping a couple of elements back until the party (such as the warm up) to make the final party feel new and special. All the material is good for walkers to four, but you might want to simplify some of the moves for your younger children.
Our charity this year will be the Make a Wish Foundation and we will be collecting money for the charity in the final party. Remember to tell your customers about it before the class and have your collection tins out. Trish has collection tins and stickers for all franchisees and agents.
A new MAD Sport CD will be coming out shortly for you to sell in class and to nurseries. There will also be a poster to advertise it on your merchandise boards.
Trish has created a checklist to help you through all the marketing and preparations for the MAD sport term.
There are lots of different types of PR for you to use with magazines and newspapers to highlight your MAD sports parties. If you regularly advertise with a publication, you should ask for some free editorial – most give this out, but only to those people who ask!
There is a special rebooking letter for you to use with customers for next term telling them all about the term’s sport theme, which is available now in the MAD Sports downloads section of the intranet.
Think about how you are going to decorate your room for the final party and order what you need now.
You make like to give gold medals away in your final party. These can be bought at the moment from Poundland – £1 x 10 or ebay may offer cheaper prices for a bulk buy.
Children Centre’s and Nurseries
It is so important to have nurseries and children centre’s on your books to diversify your income stream. Remember to look at the nursery section of the marketing manual (update given out last summer – see Termly Training Handouts in Documents and Downloads) for ideas on how to approach them. Some top tips discussed yesturday were:
- Regularly write out to nurseries in your areas.
- It is essential that you follow up your mailouts with a phone call and that you try to get a face to face meeting. To help get this meeting, offer something for free. Many franchisees offer to bring in a free class voucher for all their parents. Offering to run a free taster session can also be good and get it booked in as soon as possible.
- It is quite common for an organisation to want to change the length of the session to 30 minutes or even 20 minutes. Trish often uses a quick rule of thumb when quoting for different length lessons – £1 per minute. However, if the nursery only want 20 minute classes they must book more than one session to make it cost effective.
- Nurseries and Children’s centres are very impressed when we align our activities to the Early Learning Goals (many other organisations don’t do this!), so when you go to speak to an organisation, take a couple of different class plans with the ELGs clearly laid out (remember there are examples and help on this in the nurseries section of the business documents and downloads section.) Also many children’s centres have their own priorities, such as speech development, listening skills or physical fitness. We can help you summarise how MAD Academy can support those priorities.
- You don’t need to increase your insurance to cover working in nurseries, so if they tell you they do, you should query it.
- As well as Nurseries and children’s centres, contact your Family Learning Departments in your local authority and try and get on the preferred supplier list.
We were given a very interesting demonstration of baby massage by Sarah Langley, Community Nursery Nurse, trained in IAM Massage. She introduced us to some of the benefits of massage, before showing us some key massage moves. Some simple massage moves can easily be incorporated into your baby classes, particularly in the warm ups. You are not trying to give the babies a proper massage, but just to use some of the moves which are so beneficial to young children and which parents could develop into a massage routine at home if they want.
Baby massage is very beneficial:
- Improved circulation
- Stimulate nervous system
- Aids digestion and can help with colic
- Improves muscle tone
- Can help sleep
- Improves sinuses
- Improves bonding
- Produces happy hormones
Important things to remember:
- Every baby is different and will react differently to massage – so listen to your baby and watch for signals as they respond.
- If they don’t seem to want something, don’t do it.
- If doing proper massage, have everything to hand, strip baby completely, have a warm and darkened room and a fragrance free natural oil such as olive oil or vegetable oil.
- Don’t break contact till the end of the massage
Using massage in class
There are lots of massage moves you can incorporate into your warm up, particularly on the legs (see the Leg Massage Sheet). There are also some gentle movements which are ideal. These stretch and align baby’s limbs and are also really good for left/right brain alignment. See the Gentle Movement sheet for some ideas to use in class (located in the Termly Training Handouts under Documents and Downloads.
Infant massage – a handbook for loving parents by Vimala McClure
The Science of Parenting by Margaret Sunderland (Has a good chapter on massage and the brain)