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Review: Twistin' Tots

It seems that many families have, at one time or another, had the joy of attending a Twistin' Tots or Twistin' Tinies class. If you haven't, then I'm here to tell you what you've been missing out on!


It may seem strange to start with Jacqui but essentially she is Twistin' Tots and she's one of the big reasons families like ours keep coming back. She started the classes back in 2006 and they've become something of an institution in the local area. Jacqui has seemingly limitless energy and enthusiasm which engages and entertains the children in her classes. Also not to be underestimated are her organisational skills: classes are fast-paced, varied and well-resourced.

Themed weeks

One week you're in the desert, the next you're at the farm and a week later you're under the sea. The themes are cleverly constructed and Jacqui presents them as adventures. Kids buy in and follow along willingly! What I've really appreciated have been the consistent elements too though. Every session starts with the same welcome song and physical rhyme, tends to include a parachute song, and ends with lights and bubbles then biscuits. For those children who like a bit of predictability, this is their way in.

Fantastic props

Every single session has a range of props: musical instruments, toys, ribbons, hats, scarves... No matter how big the group, there are always enough to go round. Jacqui also sometimes does little puppet shows, usually to songs. Many sessions have a musical instrument free-for-all too. Not for the faint-hearted (or the migraine sufferer!), I can tell you!

Anything goes

If you need to breastfeed, if your child wants to run around in circles, if your child doesn't want to move from your knee, if you need to change a nappy, if your child gathers all the recorders and plays them all at once (mine!), it's fine! Whilst Tinies is really the place to take little babies if you can, I found taking my youngest to Tots was fine - noisy, yes, but she had some pretty decent naps there in the early days and became really keen to join in as soon as she could hold a shaker!

We miss our Twistin' Tots days now so please go along and enjoy them on our behalf!

The details

Find Twistin' Tots on Instagram, Facebook and on their expansive website here where you can also book classes. Email or call 07977 578 359.

Twistin' Tots is for 0-5s; Twistin' Tinies is for 0-18m (non-walkers)

Twistin' Tots classes are as follows:

Monday: Belper Community Hall (+ stay and play) 9.45 -11.20

Tuesday: Belper Community Hall 9.45 - 10.30

Wednesday: Matlock Arc Leisure Centre 9.45 - 10.45

Thursday: Darley Abbey Village Hall 9.45 - 10.30

Friday: St. Joseph's Church Hall, Ripley 9.30 - 10.15

All except Darley Abbey are followed by a Twistin' Tinies session.

Prices start at £5.50 and it's always only £1 extra for siblings. Prices also include access to a private members area with recordings of each session so you can do the songs again at home, plus a wealth of other resources.

Jacqui also offers Birthday and Christmas Parties (my NCT group arranged one of these in December 2020 - it was great but would definitely be even better without the social distancing!)

I (Steph) attended Tinies with my oldest daughter for a short while pre-COVID, dipped into the online resources during lockdown and then returned with both children to Tots this year during my maternity leave.

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