Every Monday morning, from 9:30-11:30, the nursery and social hall at Old First are taken over by toddlers playing ring-around-the-rosie, riding on 4-wheel toys, playing the piano, and building with Legos. Their caretakers relax with a cup of coffee and a pastry and chat about parenting, both its challenges and joys.
I thought of playgroup around this time last year, as the days got shorter and colder and I was facing the prospect of a long winter in a small space with an active toddler. I knew that many of my friends with toddlers felt the same way so I approached Old First with the idea of a weekly playgroup to provide social time for the kids as well as the parents. We started with a regular attendance of about 8-10 kids; that number has increased to about 15 kids each week. The parents have also formed strong relationships through playgroup and we often meet up at various times during the week. The parents/caretakers take turns bringing snack each week; we sing songs together around 10:30; there is a different craft activity each week; and there is also some active play. Everyone makes a small donation each week to Old First; some of which we use for craft and snack supplies.
The kids have gotten older and attendance has grown. We could use a few volunteers! It would be great to have some help with set up (making coffee, setting out the snack for the kids, putting chairs out, etc.) and pick up. Are you crafty? We would love to have someone be in charge of the weekly craft table – from thinking of the activity to helping the kids glue and paint. Do you like to read out loud? A reading corner would be a great addition to our playgroup.
Let me know if you’re interested in joining the fun and games. And feel free to stop by any Monday morning to see the social hall in a whole new light!
Thank you Old First for providing a great resource for Philadelphia families.