31 May 2007


Here is my first 'featured' WAHM - we sell Reward ID Bands™ so it seemed logical to start with IdentifyMe®, especially as they sent me a newsletter yesterday launching their latest research survey.

IdentifyMe® is the place for all your I.C.E (in case of emergency) identification needs. Their fantastic lightweight and secure IdentiKids® children's ID wristbands and older children's WickID® give you peace of mind when you are out and about military style dog tags. They also have stunning and unique medical ID bracelets ideal for allergy sufferers, diabetics and those in need of medical ID with a great range of co-ordinating fashion jewellery! And if that wasn't enough they are also a leading supplier of custom printed wristbands, ideal for event management, admissions or for schools, nurseries and SureStarts - with very low minimum orders!

Two years ago IdentifyMe® conducted a national survey on parental attitudes towards "tagging" children. The results last time showed some very interesting statistics and now they are trying to find out whether they are providing solutions that help other parents give peace of mind. They also want to know if there is anything else we can do to help educate children who may become lost and also educate people who may find a lost child on what to do in this ever changing society that we live in. To take the survey
Click Here.

Do you have a business?

I've been 'networking' with increasing verocity over the last few years with increasing numbers of small businesses (many of the fellow WAHMs - work at home mums) and I thought I'd start to feature some of their news here too and hopefully introduce them a customer or two! If you are interested in being features let me know what you are up to and I'll do my best!

Many of the people I'll feature are also friends on myspace - feel free to add me as your friend - http://www.myspace.com/littlesheeplearning if you want to network there!

30 May 2007

Dressing Skills

Does your child need help with dressing themselves? Are they struggling with zips, laces, buttons, poppers velcro, snappers, buckles? If so this is the book for them.

This lovely fabric Skills Book is great for practicing independent dressing skills. Tie up the shoelace, unzip and zip up the sleepsuit, undo and do up the poppers on the blouse, buckle and unbuckle the belt on the shorts,button and unbutton the shirt, practice pulling apart and sticking together the velcro on the glove and pressing and pulling apart the snapper on the purse.

Bean Bags

We have some more new products at Littlesheep Learning we received the box late yesterday and it is very exciting unpacking them and finding that they really are even better than they look in the pictures. We are pleased to announce the arrival of colour, shape and number bean bags. We'll add some teaching ideas for these products shortly - so do add your ideas!

The colour beanie bags set of 10 coloured bean bags (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, black, white, grey and brown) have the name of each colour stitched onto one side and are ideal for early colour recognition. Each bean bag measures approximately 10cm and can be stored conveniently in the drawstring cloth bag.

The shape beanie bags are a set of 8 shaped bean bags (circle, square, rectangle, triangle, star, oval, pentagon and hexagon) with the name of each shape stitched onto one side and are ideal for early shape recognition. Each bean bag measures approximately 10cm and can be stored conveniently in the drawstring cloth bag.

The number beanie bags set contains 20 bean bags with the name and number stitched on either side - ideal for a wide range of counting and number games. Each bean bag measures approximately 7cm and can be stored conveniently in the drawstring cloth bag.

We hope to be adding alphabet beanie bags in the future so do keep checking back for updates.

28 May 2007

Do you like my blog?

I've just been listing my blog in various directories and the like to try and get more people reading it and commenting (I feel like I'm talking to myself a lot!). Anyway I've just listed it on Technorati and you can add it to your favourites if you want by clicking on the little button below (please!).

Add to Technorati Favorites

27 May 2007

NAS - Thomas and Friends Suvey

I was just browsing the National Autistic Society (NAS) website and came across information about their Thomas and Friends Survey.

In 2002, The National Autistic Society (NAS) commissioned a small research project to better understand the special relationship between children with autism and Thomas & Friends. The research showed that for many children, Thomas has been a vital point of entry to the world of communication and play.

Since then, the NAS has worked closely with the Thomas & Friends brand and we are delighted to announce that donations raised through the partnership have just reached over £780,000!

To celebrate, they have launched a new research study on a larger scale to further explore the special connection between children with autism and Thomas.
To get involved, please complete the online questionnaire or call 020 7903 3648 for a telephone interview before Friday 8 June. As a thank you, all participants will be entered into a prize draw to win one of five family tickets for a 'Day out with Thomas'.

24 May 2007

Socially Speaking

Now stocked at Littlesheep Learning, Socially Speaking is a fantastic communication programme aimed at children in Key Stages 1 and 2. It consists of a book and a game to help teach and reinforce social skills in a fun way.

The Socially Speaking book will help you to introduce and practice the skills children need to develop and maintain relationships and to lead independent lives. It is a unique social skills programme which lasts a whole year and is divided into three units: let's communicate, let's be friends and let's practise. As children progress through the carefully structure programme, their self-esteem will increase, their listening skills and expressive language abilities will improve, and everyone will benefit from enhanced social interaction with the class. Socially Speaking contains teaching notes, photocopiable A4 illustrated worksheets, assessment and evaluation forms.

The Socially Speaking Game is designed to complement the Socially Speaking book, and focuses on social interaction in 3 key areas: home, school and the wider community. Through a variety of role-play and problem-solving activities, children are given the opportunity to practise vital skills such as listening, turn taking, giving compliments, asking questions, making telephone calls and conveying emotions. Contains game board, 100 question cards, playing pieces and teacher's notes. Ideal for 3-6 players at Key Stage 1 & 2, plus older children with special needs.

23 May 2007

Today's picture

Today I've been busy networking! As well as the blog here Littlesheep Learning also has a prescence on MySpace. So today I designed a nice little message to send to my friends.

Want to be my friend on MySpace? Feel free to ask! I'm particularly interested in networking with other Work at Home Mums (WAHM), parents, parents of children with special educational needs and parents who home educate.

22 May 2007

Every Disabled Child Matters (again!)

A key part of the EDCM campaign is raising the profile of disabled children's issues locally. They need your help to make disabled children matter in your local area. They have prepared a new online action that allows you to email a letter to the editor of the local newspapers in your area. This letter highlights their Local Authority Charter, and calls on every local authority to sign up to it.

They need everyone who lives in a local authority that has not yet signed up to take part in this action. The following local authorities HAVE already signed up: Cornwall; Devon; Dudley; Ealing; East Riding of Yorkshire; East Sussex; Enfield; Halton; Hertfordshire; Hull; Islington; Kingston upon Thames; Lambeth, Lincolnshire; Luton; Nottinghamshire; Solihull; Somerset; Southwark; Stockport; Sunderland; Telford and Wrekin; Tower Hamlets; Wokingham. PLEASE TAKE ACTION!

If your own local authority is NOT listed above:
  1. Please take part in our new action, by sending an email to the editor of your local newspapers.
  2. If you have not yet done so, you can also send an email direct to the Councillor with responsibility for children's services, who we want to sign the Charter.

If your own local authority IS listed above and has already signed up:

  1. Download our new supporter briefing which gives ideas on how to help make sure that the Charter commitments are delivered. All of these actions can be taken forward at http://www.edcm.org.uk/la_charter

If you have any questions about this action, or anything about the campaign, get in touch with the campaign team on 020 7843 6318 or at info@edcm.org.uk

For more information see: http://www.edcm.org.uk

Time to Talk with Ginger Bear

We are delighted to announce that Littlesheep Learning are now stocking the Time to Talk communication programme in association with Ginger Bear. The Time to Talk programme consists of a book, a game and a friendly Ginger Bear Puppet.

The Time to Talk book contains activities to help Foundation Stage (Reception) and Key Stage 1 children gain access to the curriculum and develop friendships. School can be a frustrating and confusing experience for children who have not developed their communication skills and access to the curriculum may be difficult, as will developing co-operative skills and friendships. Written by the author of the best-selling Socially Speaking, Time to Talk has been developed to teach and develop oral language and social interaction skills to children aged 4-6. It contains 40 activity sessions, designed to take place 2 or 3 times a week, Time to Talk will help you teach and develop the 'rules' of interaction with the help of Ginger Bear who features in all the activities. The skills taught include: eye contact, turn taking, sharing, greetings, awareness of feelings, giving / following instructions, listening, attention and play skills.

The Time to Talk game is a fantastic board game that will teach and develop essential language and social skills to Foundation Stage (Reception) and Key Stage 1 children. The game is centred around Ginger Bear and is designed to complement the Time to Talk book. It is a fun and accessible way of helping younger children improve their communication skills and social interactions. Children have the opportunity to perform a variety of role-play activities, practice everyday actions and provide information about themselves. Through these enjoyable tasks they learn vital social skills including: listening, turn-taking, asking and answering questions, engaging in basic conversations, non-verbal communication, eye-contact and understanding feelings. Contains game board, 96 question cards, Ginger Bear toy, 4 Ginger Bear jigsaws, 4 playing pieces, die and teacher's notes

Finally the very cute and friendly Ginger Bear Puppet, will be an invaluable resource for all social, emotional and behavioural work with your child. It is ideal for use either on its own, or to accompany and enhance use of the Time to Talk book or game. Ginger Bear will encourage and develop a variety of social, communication and language skills such as turn-taking, active listening, role play and building friendships, and would be a popular addition to any classroom.

17 May 2007

LEA / SEN Tribunal Blog Comments

Following an interview with Lord Adonis on BBC Radio 4's PM programme, discussing the LEA/SEN tribunal system, there was a huge public response on their blog. Lord Adonis insisted that there is no conflict of interest in the fact that LEA's are responsible for both assessing and funding provision for children with special needs. He also applauded the Tribunal system, which he said was completely free for parents, adding that the majority of parents are very happy with the system. The reporter Yvonne Murray did a great job and is keen to follow up. The blog is still running, so feel free to post your own views at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/pm/2007/05/children_with_special_needs.shtml

Tying Shoelaces

I've just found this Ian's Shoelace Site which contains everything you ever wanted to know about shoelaces including step by step instructions for tying shoelaces. It has lovely clear illustrations drawn as though looking down at your own shoes whilst tying, and are colour-coded to make it easier to follow where the lace runs. The standard way can be foud here and the other popular two-loop "bunny ears" version here.

If you are looking for a practice shoe don't forget that we have them
here at Littlesheep Learning.

16 May 2007

Write from the Start

We are pleased to announce that we are now stocking the Write from the Start handwriting programme. This writing programme is based on holistic principles and offers a different approach to learning to write, by developing the muscles of the hand - so that children gain the necessary control to produce letter forms - alongside the perceptual skills required to orientate and organize letter and words.

The programme is effective for mainstream children aged 4-6 years, children with developmental co-ordination disorders and older children with mild to moderate learning difficulties. It contains over 400 carefuly graded exercises and activities develop hand-eye co-ordination, form constancy, spatial organization, figure-ground discrimination, orientation and laterality. The package consists of two workbooks and a handbook.

15 May 2007

Guest Writing!

Just a little post to tell you where you can read more educational / activity ideas written I've written.

Firstly -
Treehugger Mums which is an online magazine, updated monthly with loads of articles on all aspects of pregnancy, parenting, green living - you name it! They also run an online shop which sells baby slings, cloth nappies, natural toiletries, eco-menstrual products. I write for them monthly generally providing seasonal craft ideas. My next article (currently in work progress) is on messy and not so messy Fathers Day Card ideas. So check back there and see what's new each month.

Secondly -
Play Activities which provide a daily fun educational email for parents of under 5s and have a blog with practical and everyday play ideas and comment for under 5s. I'm still thinking about what to write there and not sure when it'll be up but in the meantime there are lots of activities there to keep your little ones out of mischief!

08 May 2007

Deaf Awareness Week - Signing

I forgot to mention yestersday this great website full of resources for helping your children learn to sign.

Chelltune is the UK's first specialist baby signing store containing all the materials you need to get you babies and children signing. Owned by Michelle who holds a level three qualification in British Sign Language and is a communicator for Deaf people signing came naturally with her own (hearing) children. As well as the shop there is also a forum to discuss signing and ask any questions.

Red Cross / Red Crescent Day

This week is Red Cross / Red Crescent Week and today (8th May) is World Red Cross / Red Crescent Day. On this day we are asked to remember the efforts that all National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies do worldwide to advocate for the relief of human suffering, whether from disease, famine, disaster or war.

Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies provide relief as the world's largest humanitarian network, with activities and presence in more than 170 countries. The National Societies of the Red Cross and Red Crescent comprise more than 97 million members and volunteers - the world's largest volunteer force - assisting some 233 million beneficiaries each year. The Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement was born of a desire to bring assistance without discrimination to the wounded on the battlefield and to prevent and alleviate human suffering wherever it may be found.

World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day was born in 1922, just after World War I, when the Red Cross National Society in the Czech Republic proclaimed a three-day truce at Easter to promote peace. The idea behind the truce was to recognize one day every year during which the Red Cross would advocate for the relief of human suffering from disease and the humanity of seeing a world free from suffering due to war. 8th May, the anniversary of the birth of Henry Dunant, the founder of the Red Cross, was chosen to be that day and was called World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.

here for more information about the work of the British Red Cross

07 May 2007

Deaf Awareness Week

This week - 7th - 13th May 2007, is Deaf Awareness Week. The theme for this years week is 'Look At Me, which aims to improve understanding of the different types of deafness by highlighting the many different methods of communication used by deaf, deafened, deafblind and hard of hearing people, such as sign language and lipreading. Deaf Awareness week is supported by over one hundred deaf charities and organisations under the umbrella of the UK Council on Deafness and it involves a UK wide series of national and local events.

The RNID are inviting you to take one simple step a day to help change the world. The steps include learning to fingerspell, improving your communication skills or taking part in our big sound check - check their website each day for the next step.

Activity Ideas for Children:
  • Experiment with lip-reading: Some deaf people can watch your lips and understand what you are saying from the shapes your mouth makes. Try this with a friend, say a word without making a sound and see if your friend can guess what it was. Some words look the same, which ones?
  • Practice Sign-Language: Some deaf people do not speak, instead they use British Sign Language (BSL). The words are made by making shapes with their hands. See if you can learn some simple signs or the fingerspelling alphabet.
If you are trying to communicate with a deaf person, remember the following things:
  • Face the person while you are speaking, don't turn away.
  • Speak clearly without shouting.
  • If the person can not understand you, don't give up! Write it down or draw a picture.

06 May 2007

Lag B'Omar

This year, (5767-2007), Lag B'Omer, the thirty-third day of the Omer, the 18th day of Iyar, is on Sunday 6th May 2007. The festival gets it's name from it's description as Lag B'Omer as 'Lag' means the number 33 in Hebrew.

The Omer period lasts for 49 days from Pesach to Shavout and through the years, the period has become identified with sad memories for Jews. Massacres occurred during the period of the Romans and later still during the Crusades, in the days of the Roman Emperor Hadrian, the Jews - led by Bar Kochba - attemped to drive out the foreign oppressors from Judea. The revolt was unsuccessful and during the fighting thousands of Jews lost their lives. According to the Talmud, (Tractate Yevamot 62b), 24,000 students of Rabbi Akiva died in one short period, because "they did not show proper respect to one another!" as a result of a mysterious God-sent plague that raged during the days of the Omer counting. However on one day only, Lag B'Omer - Rabbi Akiva's pupils did not die. It was made into a festival in the middle of days of mourning that precede and follow it.

Lag B'Omer is celebrated with a day of outings and spending time outdoors. Weddings often take place as they are not permitted during the Omer.

02 May 2007

Buddha Day

Wesak (often called Buddha Day) is the most important of the Buddhist festivals and is celebrated on the full moon in May. It celebrates the Buddha's birthday, and, for some Buddhists, also marks his birth and death. Buddha literally means 'one who is awake' and has become enlightened. It is a term that denotes a person who has attained the supreme wisdom and compassion of Enlightenment. To Buddhists Enlightenment is a blessed state in which the individual attains Nirvana - the transcendence of desire and suffering. Many of Buddha's disciples have attained Enlightenment, and there have been many other Enlightened teachers. The celebration of Wesak is a chance to remember the story of how the Buddha gained Enlightenment, and to reflect on what it might mean for individual Buddhists to move towards Enlightenment themselves.

The festival is celebrated with much colour and fun. Homes may be cleaned and decorated. In Thailand, for example, special Wesak lanterns are made of paper and wood, and often there a large ceremonial releases of caged birds. In many countries during the festival, Buddhists will visit their local temple for services and teaching, and will give offerings to the monks of food, candles and flowers. Chanting and praying are an important part of Wesak. The 'Bathing the Buddha' ceremony is also often included. Water is poured over the shoulders of the Buddha and serves as a reminder to purify the mind from greed, hatred and ignorance. Gifts are taken to an altar to be offered to the Buddha statues. This shows respect and gratitude to the Buddha for his life and teachings. If there is food it is usually vegetarian as Buddhists try not to harm animals.

May Dates!

Sorry I was so busy sorting out our birthday celebrations I forgot to write the list of festivals / awareness days / weeks for May - so here they are:

1 - May Day
1 - World Asthma Day
2 - Buddha Day / Wesak / Visakha Puja / Vaisakha May (full moon day)
4 - Birthday of Buddha
6 - Lag B'Omer (Jewish)
7 - May Day Bank Holiday
7 - International Dawn Chorus Day
7-13 Deaf Awareness Week
7-13 Red Cross Week (8 - World Red Cross Red Crescent Day)
9 - Europe Day
12 - World Fair Trade Day 2007
14 - 20 - National Allergy Week
17 - Acension Day (Christian)
21 - World Cultural Diversity Day
21 -25 - National Summer Walk to School Week
21 - 26 - Noise Action Week
21 - 27 - National Vegetarian Week
22/23 - Shavout (Jewish)

23 - World Turtle Day 2006
24 - European Day of Parks

27 - Pentencost / Whit Sunday
28 - Spring Bank Holiday
31 - World No Tobacco Day

01 May 2007


To celebrate our birthday we are also running a free prize draw throughout May – find the birthday cake on our site, add it to your basket and check out (no other purchase necessary) and you will be entered into the competition to win a copy of the Usborne Book of Playtime Activities.


It’s the 1st May and it’s hard to imagine that two years ago we were preparing to launch our website. In some ways it seems a lot longer and others it seems like it was only a few months ago. So we’d like to say ‘Happy Birthday’ to us and thank all our past, present and future customers. To celebrate our birthday we are having a month of Special Offers. Each day we will have a new offer so keep checking back to take advantage of these before the end of the day! These offers could be a free gift, a saving off your order, a special offer price on a product (whilst stocks last) or free postage – we hope that you will find an offer to tempt you!