Nothing can fully prepare you for the joyful chaos a new baby brings to your life. A great way of dealing with this new version of what’s normal is to join a mom’s group. With an array of baby-parent workshops, postnatal classes and baby development courses from which to choose, you’re sure to find a place and programme that’s a good fit for you and your sleep-defying little bundle of joy.
Moms & Tots
Presenting enriching baby-parent and toddler-parent workshops since 1993, Moms & Tots is a now one of the most well-known educational franchises. The Moms & Tots programme is a collaborative effort of a child educator, occupational therapist and neurodevelopmental physiotherapist that aims to strengthen the mom and baby bond through age-appropriate play activities. Moms & Tots enhances your child’s physical, emotional, social and intellectual abilities and is also a good place for you to mingle with other moms. Moms & Tots groups are suitable for babies from the age of 2 months up.
Details: 083 399 2667 / http://momsandtots.co.za/
Garsfontein Clinic Postnatal Classes
Garsfontein Baby Clinic is run by baby health expert and qualified midwife Maryna Botha. Her passion for the health and well-being of babies is supported by more than two decades of experience. The postnatal classes presented at the Garsfontein Baby Clinic run over a period of six weeks and cover topics like breastfeeding, baby development milestones, ideas for baby stimulation activities, weaning onto solid food, basic first aid and baby massage. The classes are kept small to facilitate easy interaction between moms and babies, so if this is something for you, make sure to book well in advance.
Details: 012 998 7023 / http://garsfonteinclinic.co.za/
BabyGym is a movement programme that stimulates the natural development of a baby’s senses, brain and muscles aimed towards optimising your baby’s physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth. The programme is offered in a three-stage course. The first stage is ideally completed in conjunction with an antenatal class during pregnancy. The second stage is a series of five consecutive classes that involve a range of activities focused on the importance of touch, massage, balance, suckling, neck control, syncing the senses and coordination for a newborn baby. This is a once a week slot where mom, dad and baby get to share quality time in a structured and fun-filled way as well as getting in touch with other moms and dads in the same season of parenthood. Stage three of BabyGym is presented weekly and includes sessions on sitting, crawling, cruising and walking.
Details: 082 301 5860 / http://www.babygym.co.za/
Pienkvoet Pret offers age-appropriate baby and child stimulation activities that make growing up child’s play. Classes are usually around 90 minutes long and presented for ages 3 to 6 months, 7 to 12 months, 13 to 21 months and 22 to 36 months. Expect to assist your baby in activities that stimulate your little one’s gross motor control, perceptual and sensory development, storytelling, art activities and lots of educational play.
Details: 082 065 2027 / http://pienkvoetpret.co.za/
Clamber Club was established more than 25 years ago and these classes are a place where children can move, learn and grow. Clamber Club offers a variety of baby and toddler classes that promote movement and exercise. The baby classes are specifically designed to stimulate the senses and strengthen the core muscles, preparing your baby for mobility. Expect lots of messy play – a great tool to enhance your child’s heuristic abilities. Clamber Club helps moms understand and support the importance of body awareness and perceptual motor skills during baby’s first year. Toddler classes invite curious little ones to learn and explore through movement, improving coordination and optimising this important phase of brain development.
Details: 082 325 6171 / http://clamberclub.com/
Kloof Mediclinic Postnatal Classes
Most Mediclinic hospitals in Pretoria offer postnatal classes, but those presented by the Baby Clinic at Kloof Mediclinic in Erasmuskloof are among the most popular. Sister Lucille Bam is the baby expert managing this reputable clinic and presents a number of classes, covering a range of topics every first time mom can relate to, and also arranges for guest practitioners such as paediatricians, baby massage therapists and occupational therapists to present classes. These classes offer moms a wealth of information, advice and also a wonderful socialising opportunity. Classes usually take place on Thursday mornings and advance booking is essential.
Details: 012 367 4000 / http://www.mediclinic.co.za/
Moms and Miracles
Moms and Miracles is a play-based class filled with language, sensory, fine and gross motor development activities. Suitable for babies from 3 to 36 months, each class starts off with the sharing of information on a certain parenting topic and the views surrounding it, aiming to empower moms and caregivers with a broad spectrum of parenting knowledge. Moms and Miracles also have a time-out tea session after each class, providing like-minded moms the chance to exchange tips and advice. Moms and Miracles classes are presented in Moreleta Park and offer a free trial class.
Details: 081 704 8220 / http://www.momsandmiracles.co.za/
By Jana van der Linde