We went to Chiddlers’ Hour at the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, Bucks. It was an hour-long session based around the story of the BFG. The class was for 0-3 year olds and consisted of 30 minutes of storytelling followed by 30 minutes of craft and play.
Lots of cushions and rugs were laid out on the floor to ensure that everyone was comfortable. The parents and children sat in a large circle. In the middle of the circle were lots of toys and stuffed animals: plenty of exciting things to keep little ones entertained.
There was a very friendly atmosphere. At the start of the session, we went around the circle and each child was introduced by name and welcomed. Isy, the leader of the session, introduced us to the BFG and produced a large, laminated and colourful version of the story.
She read it aloud, making sure that everyone could see the pictures and text.
The session was imaginatively planned, and the story was interspersed with topical songs, which were often well-known nursery rhymes with the words changed to suit the story. For example, we sang ’10 dream bottles’ to the tune of 10 Green Bottles. At this point, Isy produced empty little plastic pots and trays of pom poms, tissue paper and other treasures, and the children were given the task of filling up their ‘dream jars’ (the plastic pots).
Later in the story, the children were given little cardboard rectangles, each filled with a sheet of coloured plastic to look through, which recreated the dream world of the story.
Chiddlers’ Hour takes place weekly at the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre and covers a different Roald Dahl story each session. To find out more, click on this link: http://www.roalddahl.com/museum.
When the story ended, there were several different activities on offer: children could colour in their own dream jars, play with a selection of musical instruments or choose to continue playing with the dream rectangles or other toys on offer.