Tag Archives: www.whatson4schoolkids.co.uk

What Makes A Winner?

What makes a winner?! Suzanne and Family from What’s On 4 found out during their visit to ‘Fishers Farm Park’ Image– winners of the What’s On 4 Junior award ‘Best Family Day Out’ in 2013!

The Farm Park is well signposted and easily found, surrounded by acres of Sussex countryside and very accessible from surrounding counties Surrey and Hampshire.  We received a very warm welcome at the ticket desk and lots of information on all there was to do plus the special timetabled extra activities. It was then I realised we should have arrived earlier!

ImageFisher’s Farm Park is just full to bursting with attractions, activities, features and fun. We visited with Ruby (aged 4) and George (aged 8) and they were non-stop all day – horse riding, climbing walls, small animal petting, zip wires (with a handy toddler version!), water-play, paddle boats, trampolines, tractor rides, squirrel scrambles, galleons, mini fairground rides, play areas, massive jumping pillows, mini golf – the list goes on and on. The excitement of the sheep racing will stay with me for some time! Inside was a fab, spacious soft play area with comfy chairs alongside and a great little café for grown-ups needing a sit down!

We visited on an August Sunday but because there’s so much to do and the park is on such big site we hardly had to queue for any activities – unlike other attractions we had visited previously where you can spend the best part of the day in line! There was great picnic areas and cafes and a really nice shop with lots of ‘pocket money’ prices. One element which really made the visit was the atImagetitude of the many staff who were so friendly, helpful and smiley all day – even when it was raining! I don’t know how they did it!

My over-riding impression of Fishers Farm Park is that it’s an attraction run by a very committed, focused team. Secondly that it offers excellent value for money – we didn’t manage to do everything and so my son went back less than a week later to celebrate his birthday!  We are really not surprised that they won the award therefore – it’s an excellent place for all the family – just make sure you go for the whole day – you won’t regret it!

You can see Imagemore at their website here – www.fishersfarmpark.co.uk and they are building even more attractions soon and we’ll be back at half-term for the Halloween special!

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September 9, 2013 · 10:29 am

Bullying: Q&A with Education Law Expert Anita Chopra

Discovering that your child is a victim of bullying in school can be one of the worst feelings for a parent, yet too often we see a distinct lack of help for those who want to act on this. Parents can be left in the dark about the bullying complaints procedure, and their rights to a satisfactory conclusion, meaning that the bullying can frequently continue. To this end, we at Match Solicitors have produced a help guide for parents attempting to tackle this issue and give a little more information on the process as a whole’.

Anita Chopra, Education law expert, Match Solicitors

bullying iQ: My child has just told me that they are being bullied at school. What are my first steps?

A: You should speak to your child and try to ascertain more details about what has been happening, who is involved and where within the school the bullying has been taking place.

Explain to the child that bullying is unacceptable. Tell your child that if the bullying persists, your child should make clear to the bully that the behaviour will not be tolerated. Impress on your child that if bullying takes place at school, it should be reported to an appropriate adult such as a teacher or the school nurse. Your child should feel able to discuss concerns/worries with you at home so reassure your child and be supportive.

Encourage your child to participate in extra-curricular activities. This may help to increase confidence levels which should protect your child from further bullying. See www.whatson4schoolkids.co.uk for local classes to increase your child’s confidence and develop new friends.

Make an appointment to discuss your concerns with your child’s form tutor, head of year or head teacher. Approach the matter in a calm and non-confrontational way. You should try and ascertain whether the school teacher has noticed any unusual behaviour and whether there have been any issues with your child and other pupils. Ask the school to keep an eye on your child and the bully and ask for suggestions on how to address the issue.

If appropriate, and depending on the situation, you may want to speak to the parents of the bully to make them aware of what has been happening. Explain the situation non-confrontationally and explain that it is unacceptable. Ask them to take appropriate action to prevent further bullying from taking place.

Q: Are there any tell-tale signs that my child may be being bullied?

A: Signs may include: sudden aggression or bullying of siblings or other children, difficulty sleeping, nightmares, reluctance to go to sleep, changed eating habits, coming home with damaged or missing clothes or with physical marks. It is always worth noting if your child is suddenly having difficulties with school-work or is reluctant to attend school or to go outside to play.

Q: I have a feeling that my child may be being bullied, but they will not open up to me. Who should I contact in this regard?

A: This is a difficult issue, and it is highly recommended that, if possible, you speak with your child to ascertain the details of the problem. If this still proves impossible, speaking with your child’s form teacher, headteacher or even the school’s designated anti-bullying personnel about your concerns would be the best route.

bullyingQ: I am not happy with the outcome of an internal complaints procedure. What should I do now?

A: The answer to this question depends on what type of school is involved.

If your child attends a state funded school (a community, foundation, voluntary aided or voluntary controlled school – not an academy), you may wish to progress your complaint by approaching the local authority. At this stage, try and ascertain whether the local authority is aware of other cases of bullying at the same school. If there is a problem of bullying within the School and the School has failed to respond appropriately, this will make your case more serious.

If your child is at an Academy, contact the Academy to ask how you can escalate your complaint.

You could contact the Department for Children, Schools and Families or the Secretary of State for Education. It may be useful to make contact with the Department through your MP. Please note that the DCSF is only able to take action if your child is still a pupil at the school in question.

If you remain dissatisfied, you could contact the Local Government Ombudsman. Since July 2012, the Ombudsman is unable to consider complaints about the internal workings of a school and can only consider complaints about the way a local authority has dealt with a complaint.

Q: My child is being bullied on the school network, and I can’t access this to see it, what can I do?

A: If bullying has occurred over the School’s internal computer network, the School has an obligation to address this.

Express your concerns to the head teacher at the School and record in writing the steps that will be taken. Schools will have a policy regarding use of computers and cyber-bullying will be a clear breach of this. Schools should conduct an investigation and take disciplinary action if they become aware of bullying.

Q: I wanted to know the school’s official procedure on dealing with bullying, but they claim that there isn’t one and it is addressed on a case by case basis. Is this allowed?

A: State schools have an obligation to have a written policy to prevent all forms of bullying amongst pupils. If no policy is in place, write to the local authority to explain that the School is legally obliged to have a policy in place and requesting that one is brought into place as a matter of urgency.

Q: The school reached a conclusion that bullying had taken place, but no punishment was issued to the offending child and I am worried that they will bully again. What can I do?

A: You should write to the head teacher in the first instance and make your concerns known.

The School has an obligation to have measures in place to encourage good behaviour and prevent all forms of bullying amongst pupils. If the School has found that bullying has taken place, but no sanction has resulted, you should request a written explanation providing reasons for this decision.

If the situation is not remedied to your satisfaction, consult the published complaints procedure and initiate it.

It may be appropriate to seek legal advice on next steps.

Q: Couldn’t taking my child’s school to court lead to my child being affected negatively by the school?

A: If, as a last resort, you have decided to pursue legal action against the School, the School should not treat your child adversely because you are pursuing legal action against it.

If you are pursuing a claim of discrimination against the School, if the School treats your child less favourably because you are pursuing this complaint, the School will have committed unlawful discrimination.

Speak to your legal advisors about this and seek further advice.

bullying_iiQ: My child has been receiving abusive texts from a number he is not familiar with. What should I do?

A: Take a detailed note of the text messages, the times they were sent and the number they were sent from. Do not delete the messages.

Report the text messages to the mobile provider and ask for the number to be blocked.

If appropriate, report the matter to the Police.

Please note that the above is provided as general information only. Each case will turn on its own facts and before a parent takes any of the above steps, they are well advised to seek legal advice and not to rely on the above as directive advice on dealing with a bullying situation.  Anita Chopra, Match Solicitors

To improve your child’s confidence, check out the range of local classes and clubs near you at www.whatson4schoolkids.co.uk

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Very Merry Christmas from all at What’s On 4 and BabyExpo!

There’s no question, I love this time of year. As soon as the leaves start to turn and the evenings draw in I am itching to get at the tinsel and make sure the Turkey’s on order. Suddenly it’s upon us however, faster than you can say jingle and all the sentimental notions go by the wayside as, with the opening of each advent window, the pressure mounts, especially on mums.

I don’t know about you but the older the children get, the more mad the season becomes. Time seems to be at its most limited this time of year as we are all pulled from pillar to post – it’s all enjoyable, don’t get me wrong – school fairs with donkeys and ice rinks, beautiful carol services, drinks with good friends, parties, pantos but it’s manic. This year after a roller-coaster few months I actually can’t wait until the BIG day when we can I hope breathe a sigh of relief and just sit back and enjoy. To that end I told our extended family early on they could either host, feed and water us all or we’d stay home alone enjoying what we wanted to eat, possibly even in front of the telly all day in our PJ’s! And either option is wonderful.

Saturday we have 1 x diddi-dance party, 1 x nursery Xmas Fair, 2 x santa visits, 1 x tennis Christmas party, ‘Festive Fun’ at our local library, no doubt some final hectic trawling of the shops and 2 grown up parties and there’s at least 2 times when I am supposed to be in 2 different places at exactly the same time …….you know the drill I’m sure…..

‘All I want for Christmas’ is a rest therefore, a break for everyone from the fun and frenetic build-up and some quality time with my little family while they are small enough still to adore the magic of it all. As with most homes the Christmas tree is our focus and I know our happiest times will be curled up in the warm by the tree, opening presents, watching TV and probably eating far too much chocolate. Ruby was entranced by the tree this year with the fabulous lights from Notcutts and George is enjoying very much being in charge of all the different settings – from static to strobe – depending on our mood!  Check out all their lovely Christmas stuff here – http://www.notcutts.co.uk/Christmas/S/C – (we especially like the look of the snowflake projector!)

Have a lovely cosy, restful Christmas and a fabulous, sparkly new year…….

With tons of love,

Suzanne & the WO4 Team xxx

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Something to get excited about…

Here at What’s On 4 HQ we are really excited about next month’s BabyExpoMK and welcoming very special guest, Humphrey from popular pre-school brand, Humphrey’s Corner.

Humphrey will be officially opening the show with Jo Tantum – the UK’s #1 BabySleep Expert as seen on TV – and then staying with us throughout the show, delighting visiting children, joining in the fun demo classes and enjoying story time at the end of each day! Pre-register to attend or join us as VIP shopper and you could even be taking home a very special Humphrey’s Corner Prize! To learn more about Humphrey and his friends and to see more on their beautiful product range just visit  www.humphreys-corner.com

You will also find information at BabyExpo on The Children’s Trust – a cause very close to Humphrey’s heart. The Children’s Trust is a wonderful, national charity, based in Tadworth, Surrey which provides care, education and therapy for children with multiple disabilities and complex health needs as well as rehabilitation for children with an acquired brain injury. They offer a unique combination of services helping hundreds of children, young people and their families from across the UK, rebuilding shattered lives and they rely on voluntary donations from supporters like YOU. To see more on the wonderful work they do just watch this short film – ‘Three Reasons to Support The Children’s Trust’ below:

Three reasons to support The Children's Trust, Tadworth
Three reasons to support The Children’s Trust, Tadworth

Every year, Humphrey’s Corner and The Children’s Trust invite nurseries, pre-schools and clubs up and down the country to be part of Humphrey’s PJ Week to raise much needed funds for this very deserving cause. For a voluntary £2 donation, children (and staff!) get to wear their favourite sleepwear and enjoy Humphrey themed activities, games and stories, all provided through the special fundraising pack which includes posters, activity booklets, stickers, a certificate for each child, a ‘Humphrey’s Special Day’ story booklet, party hats and bunting!

This year, PJ Week will take place nationwide from 8-12 October and, as the event grows in popularity & success, there’s even  more to celebrate! 2012 sees PJ Week’s 5th anniversary, the event has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Best Licensed Marketing Communication Campaign AND CBEEBIES presenter, Sid Sloane will be wearing his pyjamas to support this great cause! Sid explains

“Humphrey’s Pyjama Week is a fun opportunity for nurseries, schools and playgroups to raise money for a very important charity that helps children who are poorly or who need special care… I am so excited to be supporting this awesome cause and can’t wait to hear about all your events!’

So don’t miss out on this fantastic opportunity to raise money and have a lot of fun with Humphrey’s Corner and The Children’s Trust. To find out more or to register visit: www.thechildrenstrust.org.uk/humphrey or email humphrey@thechildrenstrust.org.uk

To see Humphrey and enjoy a fun-filled weekend at BabyExpo, join us at the UK’s Biggest & Brightest Free BabyShow experience, thecentre:mk, September 29 & 30 2012 – for more details go to www.babyexpobabyshow.co.uk

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August 21, 2012 · 8:59 am

How Exciting!

Here we are in a new blog ‘spot’! As What’s On 4 expands and we have even more to shout about we decided a new ‘What’s On 4 Junior’ blog was in order – like the Junior awards – covering all 3 kids sites and featuring  lots of exciting developments for you as a parent and your children as they grow! In these blogs we’ll be talking about all sorts – from what’s going on for kids each month to exciting information/offers from our advertisers to celeb parents in the news as well as the latest info from the What’s on 4 team all over the world……and more!

So what’s been happening in the World of Celebrity mums and dads……. did you see Annabel Karmel on BBC Breakfast this week? She was talking about a range of issues but one close to our hearts – that of childhood obesity and the importance a healthy active lifestyle from the word go!  If you missed her don’t worry as she’ll be at our BabyExpo event in September 29/30. You can get all her top tips then along with other parenting experts as seen on TV!  – just go to www.babyexpobabyshow.co.uk and you can register for free!

Other parents in the news included the Camerons who left their daughter in a pub of all places!

Our straw poll here at WO4HQ concluded that this was one of those ‘by the Grace of God’ moments and the sort of thing that could/does happen to busy parents more than we would like to admit.

I have done it the other way – dropped the baby off at childcare and then forgotten, only to catch sight of the empty car seat in the rear view mirror much later and nearly had a fit! A parenting business contact of ours did also admit to nearly leaving her child in the car when she went to get her hair done – one way of getting in the local press!  He slept through the whole thing fortunately so hopefully no major therapy demands later in life there!

Finally….the world of WO4 has also been very exciting by the way!  We’ve changed and we don’t just mean a new hair do – if you haven’t dropped by the What’s On 4 websites recently you might want to take a look now.  We’ve been making some great new changes so it’s much easier for you to find that ideal activity for your children, quickly and simply. We now have:

More relevant local information with our fab new regional home pages

Easier access ‘on the go’ with a new mobile version so parents can view our listings via their mobile phones

And you can still find activities quickly and easily with the same targeted search options

It works so well and it’s so simple and easy to use, maybe it’s now time for you to try something different with your child?  See www.whatson4littleones.co.uk, www.whatson4schoolkids.co.uk and www.whatson4kidsparties.co.uk for more!

What else – well, it’s one of our most important and exciting times of the year – The What’s On 4 Junior Awards Ceremony with headline sponsors Konfidence – took place on June 15. We welcomed over 100 wonderful winners, finalists, sponsors and supporters to a champagne lunch in a luxury country house hotel – the Hilton Avisford Park and celebrated the honour of being awarded one of the UK’s VERY BEST – BY YOU – mums, dads and carers!

So that’s all for now – don’t forget our sister ‘grown up’ site What’s On 4 Me opens nominations for their fab awards this week so why don’t you make someone’s year and get them nominated for a national award?! Just go to www.whatson4me.co.uk/awards.asp

Enjoy the weather for as long as it lasts, survive the football and we’ll be back next month!

Suz x

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