London Baby and Kids October Half Term Guide

Oct 17, 2017 by

Coding, Engineering, Design and Science

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Coding, Engineering, Design and Science

Institute of Imagination: Head over to Lambeth for a variety of workshops this half-term.  There are coding workshops with Fuze Monday 23rd and Tuesday 24th where parents and children age 7-14 can learn the basics of coding through a variety of hands-on activities including programming robotic arms, 9am-3:30pm.   RIBA: Take children age 5-10 for Design Quest Thursday 26th and Friday 27th led by architects where children explore different themes in full-day workshops.  Children age 11-15 are invited to Design Day workshop on Wednesday 25th.  Skill Up sessions are for children age 11-15 Monday 23rd and Tuesday 24th, £40 per workshop.  RIGB Family Fun Day – Spooky Science: Head to the RI for a variety of hands-on experiments and fun science.  Be sure to dress up as your favourite scientist! For ages 6+, tickets £16, Saturday 28th 11am-4pm.  UCL, Institute of Making: As part of the Bloomsbury Festival, head over to UCL’s Institute of Making to use a variety of ways to make masquerading materials with experts from UCL’s Immersive Virtual Environments Laboratory, Saturday 21st 1-5pm.  Statoil Gallery, Science Museum:  This is great place to either explore scientific principles with your kids ooooorrrrr, you can dump them in Wonderlab and run off with your friends and grab a coffee at the gallery cafe (they are completely OK with this).  Ticketed: £8 for a day pass, £13 for a year pass.


Festivals and Venues

Southbank Centre: Head to Southbank for Gamelan Workshops, activities related to the London Literature Festival, Concerts, World on the Brink Festival, The Nordic Festival … loads of Norse myths for anyone with a Year 4 student.  Institut Francais Family Events: bring the kids for Le Booktube Club, for E-Worskhop, La Tortue Rouge (Studio Ghibli’s Red Turtle), Despicable Me1, 2, and  Paddington.  Game Lab and more … all in easy French.  Bloomsbury Festival: take the kids to Bloomsbury over the half term to take part in a variety of family events including activities at the Petrie Museum, Grant Museum, Museum of Comedy, singing, dance, storytelling, art and more.


Just for Babies Half Term:

Are you looking for a lovely venue for a mum and baby music class? Check out Monkey Music Marylebone, Maida Vale, Notting Hill and Hampstead. Book your Monkey Music classes here.  Royal Albert Hall Storytelling and Music Sessions, Tuesdays 10am, 11am and noon.  British Museum Little Feet, Thursday 2nd November.  National Gallery Welcome Wednesday 18th October and 1st November.  Chelsea Swim Spa, check to see if they have half-term openings.  For Crying Out Loud, Wigmore Hall Wednesday 8th November, 11am, £8.50.



Theatre, Performance and Workshops: 

National Theatre, Musical in a Day: Saturday 21st, 9:45am-4pm.  Take the kids to a day-long workshop where kids will explore music and storytelling.  Tickets £12 adults, £8 children.  London Symphony Orchestra, Celebrating Bernstein: join Marin Alsop as she leads the LSO in this family friendly concert celebrating Bernstein by performing not just works loved, but works he also composed. Tickets £5 for children, £10 adults, Saturday 4th, 2:30-3:30pm.  V&A, Pop up Performances: as part of Opera: Passion, Power and Politics.  If your kids, like mine, have ZERO interest in opera, join me in converting them with the Marriage of Figaro on Saturday 21st 11am, 1pm and 3pm.  Free, all ages, performance approximately 30 minutes.  Royal Albert Hall, The Addams Family in Concert: Bring the kids and listen to Marc Shaiman’s orchestral score while watching Barry Sonnenfeld’s twisted comedy, The Addams Family.  Tickets from £25 (Rausing Circle) Thursday 26th, 7pm start.  Ovalhouse, Dr Zeiffal, Dr. Zeigal and The Hippo That Can Never be Caught: Tuesday 24th- Saturday 28th, 2pm.  Now here is a fantastic half term show, an award-winning comedy.  Tickets just £10. Shakespeare’s Globe: Bring the kids two enchanting storytelling session based on a variety of themes including Norse Myths with professional storytellers and puppetry from Little Angel Theatre. Tickets £8 per person, Tuesday 24th – Friday 28th.  Kings Place, Tommy Foggo Superhero: Head to Kings Place for a multi-media tale of a life saved by music.  Ages 7+, tickets from £11.50 per adult, £9.50 per child.  Sunday 22nd, 3pm  ST. Martin in the Fields, LMA Mini Maestro: Mozart’s mini-symphony for strings,  Eine Kleine Nachtmusic.  Saturday 21st, 4:30pm.  Unicorn Theatre: Head over to Borough and take part in drama workshops (ages 6-12) See Beowulf or Laika.  Little Theatre: There are LOADS of plays on over the half-term, do take a look and book soon … they are selling out.  Puppet Theatre Barge: taking the kids to Little Venice is a fabulous day out.  Take the kids to see The Three Little Pigs plus Captain Grimey over the break.  Lyric Theatre: Head to Hammersmith to see Janet and Allan Ahlberg’s Burglar Bill, ages 3-8.  Older kids might enjoy Sidney’s Shed on Saturday 21st.  London Philharmonic Orchestra FUNharmonics Family Concert: The Gruffalo’s Children with the LPO plus a variety of FUNHarmonic events. All ages, tickets from £12, Sunday 22nd, noon.  Wigmore Hall Family Day, Soundscapes and Landscapes (in conjunction with the Wallace Collection).  Friday 27th, 10:30am. BFI Holiday Workshops for Children ages 8-12, bring the the kids for day-long, drop-off movie making workshops. Tickets from £20. Tuesday 24th, Wednesday 25th, 10:30-4:30pm


Outdoors and Nature:

Chelsea Physic Garden Family Activity Days: Bring the kids to learn about using natural dyes or go on a story-telling and garden exploration about silk.  Holland Park Ecology Centre: Pack the kids up and send them off to Holland Park for the day.  Children over the age of 8 can be dropped-off, but children from the age of 5 can also attend some of the workshops and activities.  The LookOut, Hyde Park: Head to the beautiful LookOut hidden away in Hyde Park and take part in a Wild Photography Workshop (£15) or stop by for potion making and nature trails at the Discovery Days.  Westminster Boating Base: This fantastic recourse is located in Pimlico and for children age 10+, it costs just £15 for an annual membership, children can learn to Kayak in day-long workshops for just £5, Tuesday 24th and Wednesday 25th, 10am-5pm.  After children earn their certification, they can attend the weekly kayaking and sailing sessions.


Daytrips, Traintrips and a Planetrip:

A few ideas for anyone wanting an easy trip away for the day Whitstable in Kent, sandy Broadstairs, fruit picking at Garson’s in Esher, Charles Darwin’s Down HouseBrockenhurst New Forest, Groombridge Place Tunbridge Wells, Knole Park Sevenoaks, Clip N Climb in Chelsea,  Making of Harry Potter.    Also if you have not been to Oxygen, Go Ape or the Wonderlab at the Science museum, you may be interested in my reviews before you head out.  A bit further afield, head to York St. Ives or Athens.


Museum Drop-in Sessions and Workshops:

Royal Academy: Head to the RA for a printing workshop or some fun drop-in activities for all ages.  Matisse in the Studio may be particularly accessible for older children as the exhibit takes objects from his home and studio and then shows all the different ways he depicted these objects in his artwork – a very inspiring exhibit.  V&A, October Half-Term:  Make props and costumes to create an experimental opera set (sounds really intriguing) The Imagination Station 21st-29th October.  Explore stating operas with the Digital Kids October Half Term.   Garden Museum Big Draw: Join Katie Spragg during the half-term to create stop-frame animation in clay.  Free, 3+, 2pm-4pm, but feel free to drop in or stay for the duration. Serpentine Gallery Sisters from Another Mister: Head to the gallery for a weekend of family events where you will use all five senses to evaluate how we record images and experiences.   National Gallery: There are some great workshops and events on over the school holidays including an architectural drawing workshop for older kids, Rousseau and the lions with Lego, creepy crawlies, drawing and other workshops.  On Saturday 21st October, bring the kids to the Diwali Family Festival.  Check individual events for details. British Museum: There is coding at the Digital Workshop and then a week of exploring the Scythians through craft-making artefacts, storytelling and exploring burial rituals in The Great Court.  Tate Britain: Library and Archive Show and Tell Friday 3rd November 12:30-11:30 and 1:30- 2:30, free but booking essential.  Join My Culture Club for an interactive tour of Tate Britain (and its drop-off!!!) tickets are £15 includes a goodie bag and snacks. Wallace Collection: head over for Drop-in and draw, book the kids into the Spanish Still Life painting workshop or book into the “Soundcapes and Landscapes” event run in conjunction with Wigmore Hall.  Tea and Crafting: Book a day of crafting for you and an older child at Tea and Crafting.  Over half term you can book into knitting, calligraphy, introduction to watercolour and bouquet making.  My daughter and I will go as soon as we can ditch her little brother.  Clapham Pottery: Book your kids into clay workshops 24th-26th October.

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