We are huge fans of Rainbow Factory here in Leeds and, in fact, Ted is a Rainbow Factory baby given that they are the same age and he has been visiting since birth!
But whilst we are huge fans we hadn’t got round to checking out their ‘We Are Mini’ venture. So we were very excited to be invited down to try out a couple of the sessions. Elsa opted for ‘Mini Princesses‘ and we chose ‘Mini Make Believers’ for Ted.
In all honesty, Mini Princesses is not something that would have jumped out at me for Elsa to attend. Elsa and I are not ‘princessy’ girls (well, she might be given the chance but I’ve not given her the chance!) so the idea of a ‘princessy’ session wasn’t that appealing. How wrong I was.
Mini Princesses is aimed at both girls and boys (although Ted was the only boy there when we joined in) and is focused on a new skill or trait each week. It is about empowerment and social awareness. The theme for us was ‘Honesty’.
Fairy Godmother Emma runs the Mini Princesses session (and all We Are Mini sessions) and she is actually magic. The children fall under her spell, Ted is particularly enamoured with her! Within seconds of us arriving she had all the children singing, dancing and joining in with all the activities.
The Mini Princesses session compromised signing, dancing, storytelling, imaginative play, team work, a little bit of crafting and so much more. The session was perfectly pitched at the girls, all aged 3-4 years but it was also perfect for just turned 2 year old Ted to join in.
Mini Princess sessions runs on Friday at 1pm and Saturday at 11.30am. You can drop in to the sessions, although booking is advisable.
Following on from the success of Mini Princesses, Ted and I went along to Mini Make Believers this week. Things didn’t bode well when Ted was laid on our drive screaming before I put him in the car, unfortunately he arrived at Rainbow Factory in a pretty foul mood.
Mini Make Believers is an hour long session of active story telling, the story on this occasion being ‘The Tiger Who Came To Tea’. It is aimed at children aged 2-5 years and involves crafts, imaginative play, creativity, songs and the encouragement of team work.
Ted’s mood did not put off Fairy Godmother Emma (I’m not sure that she is a Fairy Godmother at Mini Make Believers but I like to call her that anyway!) as she persevered with encouraging Ted to get involved in the session. He certainly wasn’t the easiest child to entertain on that day but Emma continued to involve him and eventually brought him out of the mood. This is testament to the child friendly skills and dedication of the team at Rainbow Factory. Ted is notoriously moody and we have been to many other venues and classes where the leader has not tried to engage with Ted if they could see he was grumpy.
Although the Mini Make Believers wasn’t huge success for Ted on this occasion I loved the session and we will definitely be back to try it out again on a day when Ted is in a better mood!
Mini Make Believers sessions run on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The full timetable is available to view here.
We Are Mini sessions are £5 per child and booking in advance is advised although drop ins are welcome. Full details of all sessions can be found on the We Are Mini website.
Check out the Rainbow Factory website for full details of the May Half Term Activities. The theme is Awesome Authors and entry is free, just pay for the activities (£3 each) you would like too participate in. We are looking forward to the Dr Seuss Character Creator & Puppet Workshop and making our own Gruffalo model!
*We enjoyed complimentary Mini Princess and Mini Make Believers sessions for the purpose of this post. All words and opinions are my own*