Under Fives

Things to do with Babies, Toddlers & Young Children in Derbyshire and Staffordshire

Under-Fives Newsletter

The Newsletter on the Under-Fives
Issue 152: November 2017

Welcome to the Under-Fives newsletter. I hope you find it useful.

You can download this newsletter as a pdf file.


What's New at the Under-Fives Web Site?

Toddler Parties

Find a Christmas Party Entertainer

For party entertainers, face painters, venues...


Fun Places to Go

Indoor Play Centres are a blessing during the winter months - we've more listed, with your reviews, at

Best Books for the Under-Fives

After years of research - here are some of our favourite books for the under-fives. What else gives you repeat enjoyment of a present for an outlay of as little as £2.09?

Slinki Malinki

1. Slinky Malinki
by Lynley Dodd
Slinky Malinki was blacker than black. A stalking and lurking adventurous cat. Children go back again and again to this book.

We're going on a bear hunt

2. We're Going on a Bear Hunt
by Michael Rosen
For more than twenty-five years children have been swishy-swashing and squelch-squerching through this award-winning favourite.

Where the Wild Things Are

4. Where the Wild Things Are
by Maurice Sendak
Let the wild rumpus start - beautifully written prose-poem.


3. Peepo!
by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
Great one for the youngest children. Look through the holes to spot details from the wonderful illustrations.

Three little wolves and the Big Bad Pig

5. Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig
by Eugene Trivizas
One for the four-year-olds - children love the topsy-turvey version of the well known fairy-tale.

The Smartest Giant in Town

6. The Smartest Giant in Town
by Julia Donaldson
Funny, warm-hearted, who could fail to love George, the smartest giant in town?

Dear Zoo

7. Dear Zoo
by Rod Campbell
Little ones love lifting the flaps to discover the animals the zoo has sent - a monkey, a lion and even an elephant. But will they ever manage to send the perfect pet?

Guess how much I love you

8. Guess How Much I Love You
by Sam McBratney
As Little Nutbrown Hare and Big Nutbrown Hare discover, love is not always an easy thing to measure. This lovely board book is one that children ask for time and again.

Five Minutes Peace

9. Five Minutes' Peace
by Jill Murphy
We can all sympathise with Mrs Large in her quest for five minutes peace.

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

10. Everyone Hide From Wibbly Pig
by Mick Inkpen
Another lift-the-flap book which entertains and delights. But where is Tiny Pig?

I'd love to know your favourite children's book for the under-fives - email jill@under-fives.org

Events for the Under-Fives

E-mail your event to jill@under-fives.org and I'll be pleased to publish it here.

Amazing Santa's Grotto

Visit Santa in his amazing grotto on Saturday 25th November from 1-3 pm in Mayfield Memorial Hall, near Ashbourne, DE6 2LD. Plus lots of craft stalls, gifts, games, home made cakes, tea and coffee.

Christmas Experience at Blithbury Reindeer Lodge

From now until 23 Dec from 10 am. Hand feed the reindeer, visit the Elf School where the children will be entertained until its time to go and meet Santa, join the Elves around the fire and listen to their wonderful story of how Santa came to leave his reindeer at Blithbury Reindeer Lodge, Rugeley.

North Pole Adventure, A Magical Christmas Journey

From now until 24 Dec from 9.45 am at the National Forest Adventure Farm. A magical 2 hour family experience. You'll be transported to the home of Father Christmas at the North Pole through a magic portal. In the Victorian high street, visit the sweet shop and make Christmas crafts. Visit the Ice Cave to meet the talking Polar Bear. Decorate gingerbread men with Mother Christmas. Take part in Elf Training and of course meet Father Christmas in his Grotto to receive a special gift.

Winter Wonderfarm

At Lower Drayton Farm from 1-23 December. Incuding Elves teddy bear workshop, meet the farm's friendly animals and Santa's Grotto.

Free Pantomime

Members of Ashbourne Town Council invite you to join them for the FREE pantomime by Gary Starr Pantomimes in the Town Hall at 2pm on 6th Jan. Tickets available from 1st December on a first come first served basis, with a maximum of 4 per person.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at The Potteries Museum and Art Gallery

Mow Cop Players present the traditional family favourite pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in the museum theatre. 25 November to 3 December.

Santa Train on the Foxfield Railway

Board Santa's train and enjoy a festive treat as you travel through the scenic Staffordshire countryside. Saturdays and Sundays from 25th November to 24 December, 11 am to 3.30 pm.

Santa and Steam at Churnet Valley Railway

Santa strolls through the train bearing gifts for all the children. Saturdays and Sundays from 2nd December

Pregnancy and Under-Fives News

Parents can help minimise children's pain from vaccinations, study says

While repeatedly telling a child 'it's OK' actually causes more distress, counting to 10 helps.

Babies understand a diverse set of words from six months old

Study indicates infants as young as six months old may realise certain words are related - and that interaction with adults boosts understanding

Baby watching

Women advised to sleep on side to help prevent stillbirth

A study of just over 1000 women found the risk of stillbirth doubles if women go to sleep on their backs in the last three months of pregnancy.

Breastfeeding and alcohol - in moderation - can mix

Australian study has found moderate drinking does not harm the baby, as long as mother's take precautions with timing of feeds.

Breastfeeding could reduce eczema risk in children

Study examining the impact of breastfeeding support programmes shows 54% reduction in eczema for children involved

Copyright jillstudholme.com, 2017
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