In today’s post on Bristol Mum I am really pleased to tell readers about Debutots: brilliant new interactive storytelling, music and drama sessions for young children in Bristol!
Debutots introduces children aged 6 months – 7 years to a magical world of wonderful characters and beautiful music and also improves communication, language and listening skills, and boosts confidence.
Debutots sessions are run by Geri McKenna who has been formally trained in drama and who runs weekly Debutots Family Play Sessions for babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers in Emerson’s Green.
In January Geri plans to launch Debutots classes across Bristol!
To find out more about Debutots as well as how to organise a free Debutots taster session for your little one, do read my interview with Geri below…
Hi Geri, please tell readers a bit about Debutots.
I’m really excited to tell the readers of Bristol Mum about Debutots! Debutots is a blend of interactive storytelling, music and dramatic play for children aged 6 months to 7 years.
Children use drama to explore our unique stories vocally and physically. In doing do Debutots promotes literacy and communication development.
In a Debutots session children speak, listen, imagine, observe and do! They also have lots and lots of fun!
What Debutots classes do you run for both young children and older children in Bristol?
I have just recently launched Debutots in Bristol, and as well as delivering sessions in schools and nurseries I also run a special Family Story Play session at Emersons Green Village Hall on Fridays, 9.35-10.25am, during term time.
It’s very inclusive and suitable for parents, carers and their little ones from 6 months to 4 years. Every child can have fun and participate at their own level. There is also time for coffee and a chat afterwards, which is lovely.
I’m hoping to launch new parent and child sessions in other locations across Bristol in the new year.
What does a typical Debutots session involve?
Our Family Story Play sessions start with a warm up to music, interactive and fun language games, bubble time and puppets. There is a unique interactive story, and then an imaginative group re-telling of the story. After our cool down we have some time for coffee, tea and a chat.
How can Debutots classes benefit children?
I’m so passionate about the benefits of Debutots for children – there are lots! Our sessions stimulate language development, ignite imagination and improve concentration. Debutots nurtures the children’s creativity so that each child can participate in their own way, becoming more and more confident in themselves and working with others.
Are there any benefits for parents and carers of children when they come to your classes?
Not only is it a lovely way to meet and interact with other parents and carers and their children, but Debutots can arm parents and carers with ideas to explore stories imaginatively with their children at home too.
It’s also a great environment to watch and notice how your child is gaining confidence each and every week. There are lots of “Wow” moments where children will do something amazing for the first time, like confidently interact with the puppet or another child, or say a new word for the first time.
Has drama always been a big part of your life?
Yes absolutely! On leaving school I trained as a professional drama practitioner at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. I specialised in theatre-in-education, and then spent 11 years working in schools supporting children from lots of different backgrounds.
I really believe that drama and play are essential in developing children’s self-confidence and their social and emotional skills. It’s how they make sense of the big world around them!
What led you to actually lead Debutots classes in Bristol?
I moved from Scotland to Bristol with my husband in 2007 and we instantly loved it here. We have made Bristol our home, and this year I decided to leave my job in education and start a brand new Debutots adventure – which means I get to have lots of amazing little adventures every week with the children and parents who take part in my sessions. It’s incredibly rewarding and lots of fun.
How can parents and carers reading this interview get in touch with you about organising a free taster session?
I’d be delighted to offer free taster sessions to parents and carers – come and see for yourself what Debutots is all about! I can be contacted via phone – 0117 325 7801, or email – firstname.lastname@example.org, and also through Facebook – @DebutotsBristol
You can also find out more about Debutots at www.debutots.co.uk
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Just thank you, Bristol Mum! And I’m looking forward to meeting new parents, carers and their little ones very soon!