Toddle About Blog

The Gruffalo arrives in MK for 1st Birthday

The Gruffalo at Childcare HubThis weekend, The Childcare Hub in Milton Keynes, the home of nature-based play, run by Kids Play Nurseries, celebrated it’s 1st Birthday and The Gruffalo was there to host the party!

Over 100 Pre-Schoolers were on the Guest List and the event was packed full of giant sized Gruffalo fun. After meeting The Gruffalo, the children joined in with special Forest school activities, listened to Gruffalo stories, and had their faces painted with a finale being a themed birthday cake and special guest, The Gruffalo.

Sharon Elliott, Childcare Director said, “The Childcare Hub has been a fantastic venue over the last year, giving children a great opportunity to learn more about our natural world. The Gruffalo seemed the perfect guest to host our children’s party”.

The Childcare Hub is the home of nature-based play and opened to the public in July 2017. The newest venue for Kids Play Childcare, this site really is the beacon for their ethos of nature-based play. The Childcare Hub plays host to Forest School sessions for all MK nurseries, has natural resources for all ages of learning and a rooftop garden!  At the event, the children had the opportunity to wear their best Gruffalo fancy dress costumes.


The Childcare Hub incorporates a Nursery, Pre-School, After School Club and during School Holidays, Camp MK Activity Day Camps.

Unique and Fun Products for Little Ones: Shop About Summer 2018

There are great products coming out all the time for bumps, babies and toddlers. Here’s our run down of some of the best things available on the market today:

Keepsake Memory Bears & BlanketsKeepsake Memory Bears & Blankets – From £40

These one of a kind memory bears and blankets are handmade with love from Keepsakes by Laura. If you’re looking for a special gift, or a way to treasure your baby’s old clothing, then Laura will provide personalised items stitched with love. Toy animals £40; Standard sized blanket £70.

Order at or withlovelaura and quote ‘Toddle’ for 10% off.




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Water Playgrounds In and Around Your Area

Water PlaygroundsExplore the Water Parks in and around your area – great fun for kids of all ages and we are sure you’re Children will enjoy them and they are a perfect way to keep them nice and cool on those hot summer days.


The Enbankment Splash Park
Open daily. Monday 23rd July – Monday 3rd September. Free Admission.

The splash park sprays, squirts, mists and shoots water and is perfect for children to have fun in the sun on a hot day. It offers everything families could need for a fun-filled day in the sun. As well as the main water feature there are picnic tables, a shelter and regular food and ice cream vans. There is free car parking, toilets and baby changing facilities.

Situated next to the River Nene at The Enbankment, Wellingborough, NN8 1LD.

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Flying The Nest – How to make sure your little one is ready for their first day of school

Flying The NestBy Mrs Nicola Kenny, Reception teacher at Akeley Wood School

September is an exciting time for both teachers and pupils, but more so for those children who will be starting school for the first time. Whilst it can be a little daunting, most children settle quickly and easily into their new surroundings. Throughout their lives our children will go through many times of transition and with a little help, preparation and encouragement they are able to cope and indeed flourish during these times.

The key thing is not to worry. Children start school with a wide range of experiences and abilities and the teachers are there to help everyone progress at their own pace. Continue reading

Easy Toilet Training

Potty TrainingBy Lorraine Thomas, Chief Executive of The Parenting Coaching Academy.

Every toddler will eventually get the hang of using the toilet, but be prepared – toilet training is a messy business. Give it a go when you have got the time, patience and energy. The more positive and relaxed you are, the easier it will be.

Is Your Toddler Ready?

There is no ‘right’ age to start toilet training. Every toddler is different. Some will get the hang of it much earlier than others. Boys often take longer than girls. In general, most children are aged between two and three when they start. Don’t feel under pressure to start because other parents are doing it. Go with your gut instinct. Look out for the signs; these include showing interest in the toilet, telling you they want a wee or poo or pulling off nappies.

You both need to be on top form to make toilet training work, so don’t start when they are unwell or tired. Make sure training does not coincide with a change in your toddler’s daily routine, such as change of childcare. Continue reading

Should it be Illegal to Smack Children?

Controversy Corner SmackingBy Raymond Arthur, Professor of Law at Northumbria University, Newcastle.

With Scotland set to become the first UK country to make it illegal  to smack children, the debate has opened up about whether  the rest of the UK should follow suit.

What is the Current Law on Smacking?

The current laws in Britain today prohibit adults from smacking, pushing or shoving other adults. They also protect pets from violence. However, parents are allowed to use physical force to punish their children, provided the punishment does not escalate beyond ‘reasonable punishment’.

In England and Wales, under section 58 of the Children Act 2004, parents who are accused of causing Actual Bodily Harm to their children cannot invoke the defence of reasonable punishment if their smacks cause mental harm, bruising, scratching or reddening of the skin. Continue reading

Mister Maker Melon Fans

Watermelon FanHead into Summer and cool yourself down with a gigantic melon slice!


  • White paper plate
  • Glue stick
  • Green and dark pink colouring materials (paints or markers)
  • Black dot stickers
  • Wooden lolly stick

Follow our handy instructions to make a Watermelon fan:

1. Fold and glue a paper plate in half.
2. Colour the folded plate to look like a watermelon slice
3. Colour the rim of the paper plate green, to look like the rind.
4. Leave a small border white and then colour the centre of the plate pink, to look like the flesh.
5. Add black dots to the pink section of the melon to look like the seeds.
6. Glue a lolly stick to the back of the plate to make a handle.



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Simple Feta Frittata Muffins

Feta Frittata MuffinsThis one-bowl recipe is simple, nutritious and perfect for family picnics. The ingredients can easily be swapped to include your  child’s favourite flavours so even the pickiest of eaters will love them.

AGE: 12M+

• 6 eggs
• 1 medium courgette, grated
• 30g (about a handful) of frozen peas
• 2 spring onions, finely chopped
• 30g cheddar, grated
• 30g feta, crumbled
• Oregano (other fresh herbs optional e.g. parsley or dill)
• Pinch of black pepper

Our top tip: Swap out ingredients to include your child’s favourite flavours!

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Family Festivals for Summer 2018

Summer Events and FestivalsFamily Friendly Festivals, Activities and Entertainment to enjoy this Summer.

Grow Festival:

Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd July

A brand new outdoor arts festival in Corby this Summer. Inspired by the theme of water, the festival will animate Corby’s town centre with performances, experiences and workshops throughout the weekend, creating an imaginary water-filled world of adventure, with storytelling, performances and music. Come and uncover hidden surprises as you sail through the woods to a family area submerged by the Boating Lake – which will also host a spectacular early-evening event.

All around Corby town centre, woods and boating lake.

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Summer Events for Families and Their Little Ones

Summer-FunMake the most of the Summer Holidays with these great days out.


Outdoor Cinema
Saturday 21st July: 10.30am – 6.30pm

Pack some popcorn in your picnic for the annual Family Cinema Day. There will be two sessions during the day, starting with Paddington 2 at 10.30am, followed by Coco (both PG). The afternoon screening will begin at 3pm with Coco, followed by Paddington 2.

Entry is Free.

Daventry Country park, Northern Way, Daventry, NN11 2JB.  01327 871100. Continue reading