• London Mums Activities

    London is the best city in the world in terms of activities and free events for families and kids from babies to teenagers including Science Museum, The V&A, Kew Gardens, Read More
  • London Mums Competitions

    We all love freebies! London Mums partner with selected businesses to offer free amazing products to members and readers of our magazine. Over the years we have given away lots Read More
  • London Mums Magazine

      London Mums Magazine Spring 2014   Download the latest issue of London Mums Magazine Go to the members area to download PDF back issues of The London Mums Magazine. Read More
  • London Mums Photography

    Introducing the new London Mums photography section run by official photographers Memory Gate. Learn photography basics, take our weekly photography challenge, take advantage of our special offers and much more! Read More
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London Mums Magazine

London Mums is THE FREE and INDEPENDENT peer support group for mums and mumpreneurs based in London. London Mums support each other through the joys and challenges women face with raising their children in a multicultural metropole. 

In addition to sharing views, chats and tips online, London Mums strongly believe in face-to-face interaction and organise ongoing activities for mums (and dads) and children – parties, multilingual playgroups, seminars, practical workshops, conferences, trips to art exhibitions in London, movies at the local cinema, nature walks. 

Backed by the Mayor of London, the service is run by mums and mumpreneurs for other mums and children and is FREE for everyone to join. In his own words, Boris Johnson said: Forums such as London Mums and Work Your Way are invaluable for forging new relationships, sparking ideas and providing advice in an easy, accessible way.

Let me play (Trust me … I’m learning)

A picture speaks a thousand words and this is one of my favourites. A shame it wasn’t around in 1999 when my 4 year old son was being constantly scolded, chastised and persecuted by his teachers. I’ve felt for a long time that children in the UK start school far too early and when this is compounded by being an August born child – the odds for a smooth ride in the early years, dwindle to virtually zero.

In recent years there has been somewhat of a debate over the rising incidence, diagnosis or occurrence of Learning Difficulties in children.

So what’s changed?

Is it that we’re more informed and aware of these difficulties and so are quicker to label our children as learning impaired, where before they would simply have been called lazy, careless or stupid? Or is it down to a profound change in lifestyles brought about by the advent of television and other electronic diversions?

    Television, Nintendo, Play Station, Wii and the Computer are all sedentary activities. Whilst they all have their place in learning and development, the fundamental loss has been that in movement and play based activities.

      Other baby boomers like me would have come home from school and within minutes of eating a (relatively healthy) snack of milk and biscuits, would have been out again to play on the street, in the park, on their roller skates, bikes and scooters. As parents we are prone to spending hundreds of pounds sending our kids to private tutors to help with handwriting, maths, reading and concentration. Yet playing can have the same positive benefits on academic learning as well as physical development. For instance:

    Football – Two opposing teams kicking a ball between players with the ultimate aim of scoring a goal. The key skills learned and practised are motor skills such as hand-eye coordination (needed for handwriting) visual-tracking of the ball (transferred to reading and writing) balance and bi-lateral coordination (needed for brain and brain-body bi-lateral hemispheric integration), focus and concentration (needed to learn efficiently) and peer support (needed for teamwork and social skills).

      Tennis – a person hitting a ball with a racquet with the aim of placing it over the net in such a position that the opposing player cannot return the shot. Similarly, the key skills gained from this activity are balance, hand-eye coordination, foot-eye coordination (for strategic positioning), speed of visual processing (transferred to sensory processing for academic learning), focus, concentration, stamina, strategy and tactics. Not a bad bunch of skills to have in an examination situation for example!

    You may argue that what does balance have to do with academic learning? Research in the last 30 years (Frank Belgau) has shown that a weakness in balance can impact severely on those key brain processing areas that are critically involved in attention, memory, vision, auditory processing, speech, sequencing of information and reading.

      Agreed that formal learning is an essential part of life that children need to embrace in order to maximise their opportunities and experience within that environment. It is however equally important to recognize that there are other, different ways to learn. Particularly in the early years, sending your child out to play in the garden will help their development far more than sending him/her to a tutor to learn literacy or numeracy.

    It’s summer (supposedly!). So next time you begrudge them 30 minutes in the garden, letting off some steam and playing, take a moment to think about what it is actually that they are doing and how they’re going to benefit. Then make the comparison with them sitting down at a table for 30 minutes poe-faced and resentful being forced to do maths and English. Seriously no comparison !

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    Activities

    • Met Film School Summer Camps and Courses for Teens +

      For parents with teenagers, the summer holidays can quickly turn into an arduous challenge revolving around getting said teenager out of bed before noon and making sure they do their Read More
    • Easter fun stuff - ideas to keep kids entertained over Easter half term +

      Just what you need! Here is Easter fun stuff, ideas to keep kids entertained this Easter half term holidays. People who go to church attend special services on Easter Sunday. Read More
    • Easter activities for teenagers +

      If you’re looking for Easter activities for teenagers, the BAFTA Young Game Designers competition might be the right activity to engage restless creative teenagers. The competition recently launched and is open Read More
    • Spring Cleaning with Shaun the Sheep at Mudchute Farm +

      Mudchute Park & Farm is London's Best Kept Secret. And not many people know that it is the farm that inspired Aardman's genius animation series Shaun the Sheep. We spent Read More
    • Decorating the Easter Table - Crafts to do with your children +

      Easter Sunday is about more than Easter eggs but if your children are like mine, they have very little interest in anything else! To introduce them to the idea that Read More
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    Mums Tips

    • HOT CROSS BUNS recipe +

      One a penny, two a penny…..Hot Cross Buns are a real Easter treat for every member of the family. So this year, why not make your own Hot Cross Buns Read More
    • Recipe: the real Italian PANETTONE +

      This Recipe: the real Italian PANETTONE is mouth-watering.... any time of the year. A home-made Panettone is not just for Christmas. SERVES 8 Catherine Fulvio: "I HAD THE PLEASURE OF Read More
    • Tiring Timetables! UK children are now working over 54 hours a week at school and on extra-curricular activities +

      With discussions on media this week on proposals to lower the school age to two years old, I wonder whether we are really looking into our children's wellbeing.... Childhood is Read More
    • Is Echinacea really helpful to fight colds? +

      When it comes to seasonal flu and colds I would personally do anything to prevent myself and my family getting sick... So over the years I have tried many remedies. Read More
    • Breakfast recipe: CINNAMON AND APPLE CHEESY TOASTIES +

      Quick and original breakfast recipe for you: CINNAMON AND APPLE CHEESY TOASTIES. Yum! Ingredients: 2 slices of bread of your choice 50g Pilgrims Choice Farmhouse Vintage Cheddar, grated 1 Granny Read More
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