Singing, acting, craft & storytelling

Sing and Sign

Coming soon: Haggerston Community Centre on Thursdays (openings in St Paul’s, Bow and Poplar Union until then)

Babies love to wave, clap and point! Encourage your baby to communicate with extra signs like 'milk', 'more', 'change nappy' or ‘tired’ + so many more! These popular classes will take place in Haggerston Community Centre on Thursdays once Hackney Council allows the opening. Meanwhile you can book for Bow and Poplar or start with the @Home package and join Haggerston when open.
The @Home package is just £50
The 10 weekly venue sessions + @Home is £105. For more info, email or call Sukie on 07899 820205

Sing and Sign

Make Believe Performing Arts School

Based in Stoke Newington Secondary School & Sixth Form on Wednesday evenings.

Founded in 2004 and now recognised as one of the top theatre schools in the UK, Make Believe provides after-school singing, dancing and acting training to students aged three to 18. Along with its performing arts schools, Make Believe boasts a production company, franchise network, talent agency and events.

Students benefit from a complete performing arts education which helps them gain confidence, stretch their imagination and provides them with skills for life. In a safe and friendly environment, they strive to ensure all students maximise their potential whilst having fun and making friends. The syllabus includes singing, acting and dancing.

All of the teachers are industry professionals with enhanced DBS checks

Infant class (3-5 years) 17.30 - 19:00
Juniors (6-9 years) 17.30 - 20.30
Seniors (10+ years) 17.30 - 20.30

Students 3-5 years old receive 30 minutes dance, 30 minutes drama and 30 minutes vocals, covering coordination and performing arts fundamentals. Students over 6 years old receive 1-hour dance, 1-hour drama and 1-hour singing.

Book your FREE TRIAL online.

Make Believe Performing Arts School

Hola! Spanish Classes for under 5s

Online during Covid-19 but usually Wednesdays at 10am (term time) at Clissold House (N16 9HJ) and Fridays at 4pm (term time) at Mildmay Community Centre (N16 8NA)

This Spanish club is delivered in 100% Spanish for kids under five. It's fun, dynamic and culturally immersive. Boost their confidence, help them discover a whole new culture and learn Spanish through music, storytelling, movement activities, crafts, scenic arts, sensory exploration, interaction with others and more.

Hola! Spanish Classes for under 5s

Magic Box Storytelling

Wednesdays at 10.30am outside Clissold Park Tennis Pavilion.

Magic Box offers weekly drama and interactive storytelling sessions for children aged 18 months to 5 years. Classes are run by professional actor Lottie. Cost: £7 per child, £12 for two children (includes a tasty treat!). Siblings under 18 months go free.

Magic Box Storytelling

Gymboree Hackney & Islington

Classes daily

If you’re looking for something a bit special to do with your baby or pre-schooler it’s worth booking a free trial at Gymboree Play & Music: Hackney & Islington. The centre is at 60 Highbury Park Road, just a short walk from Stoke Newington (near Canonbury station) and is part of an award-winning national Gymboree Play & Music network. Its classes suit all interests and ages. The emphasis is on having fun, encouraging your child to develop a curiosity about the world, an active imagination and on developing their social and physical wellbeing.

Savings offered for Local Buyers Club members

Gymboree Hackney & Islington

Art Club

Saint Barnabas Dalston, Shacklewell Row. 10am on the first Friday of every month

Fabulous term time art classes for children aged 2-4. Cost: £5 (£2.50 siblings), Activities include crafts, music and snack time. Check their Facebook page to see if classes are running.

Baby Sensory Islington

Liverpool Road Community Centre, Islington (Tuesdays and Fridays)

These award winning baby development classes are suitable for babies aged 0-13 months. You and your baby will experience different sensory activities to support your baby’s sensory development every week. A taster class costs £5. Book a block of classes (5 or 10 weeks).. Simply book yourself onto a trial class course or block booking and choose when you want to start.

Lucy Sparkles & Friends

Tuesdays at St Mary's Community Centre (at the back of St Mary's Church) and Wednesdays online.

Run by an accomplished singer, dancer, actress, session musician and performing arts teacher, these music, drama and dance classes are suitable for children aged 0-5.

Thula Mama Singing Class

Lordship Eco Hub, N17, 2pm Mondays

£7 drop-in or £30 for 5 classes. Suitable for bumps to babies up to 12 months.

This unusual. class is a harmony singing group for expectant parents and those with babies between 6 month and 12 months. They don't sing the regular nursery rhymes like the Wheels on the Bus but instead do world songs, rounds, chants and lullabies.

Tots Tunes at The Vortex

Pop-up classes happening outside this winter (check the website for details)

A favourite class of Hackney parents with many returning with their third baby! Tots Tunes is a music class with a twist - it is as much for the adults as the little ones. These classes combine learning original tunes and songs from around the world with a few dance moves. Come and listen to and sing some quality ‘non-baby’ acoustic music all accompanied by cello and djembe.

Drop in classes at Vortex Jazz Club, Dalston N16 8AZ

10am and 11am (pay on the door)


No classes currently due to Covid-19

The sessions begins with interactive story telling before things get messy! Dress for mess.. Cost: £6 per child for Ready Steady off we go, £9 per child for Make and Paint. participating siblings half price. Contact No need to book - just turn up!).

Bach to Baby

Some outside concerts happening

These regular classical concerts usually take place at Christ Church in Highbury Grove at 10.30am. Check out their calendar for news of outdoor concerts happening due to Covid-19.
Adults £8-£12, all children go free.

Rucksack Music Inc

Classes currently online (hoping to return to Springfield Park soon).

Enjoy singing and bashing instruments in this fun and noisy environment. Suitable for children aged 0-4. Just turn up. Cost £4.50 per child per session.

Tiny Time Music

Outdoor sessions running in Clissold Park, Tuesdays 11am and Thursdays 10 & 11am, Downhills park Wednesdays 10.30am.

These fantastic music sessions are run by Holly, Anita and Rita. Places are limited so get there early to avoid disappointment. Cost: £7 per child or £10.50 for 2 siblings. BOOKING ESSENTIAL.

Class times vary during school holidays - please check on their website.

Zip Zap

St Mary's Community Centre (back of St Mary's Church, Mondays (9.45am (for children aged 10months to 5 years) and 10.45am (for babies up to 10 months). Classes cost £8.

Drama, music and sensory classes.

Baby Broadway & Baby Gospel family concerts

Sessions not currently running due to Covid-19

If you know your ‘Do-Re-Mi’ from your ‘Chim-Chim-Cher-ee’ then Baby Broadway is for you. Fun-filled concerts of show tunes – sung live by West End performers – for adults, babies & children (recommended ages 0 - 8)

Baby Gospel: Soul, motown, gospel and nursery rhymes performed by professional gospel singers at this baby-friendly family concert. For adults, babies & children (recommended ages 0 - 8)

Both are performed at venues across London including The Old Church in Stoke Newington and in Highbury and Angel.


Lady of Good Counsel Church on Bouverie Road, N16

Colourstrings is a music kindergarten for babies, toddlers and children. The baby class lasts 30 minutes and is suitable for babies aged 6 months to a year. Children who attend for a minimum of two consecutive years are offered the chance to learn a musical instrument. Call Yvonne on 0208 444 9435

Sparky Songs

The Prince Pub (9.45am Mondays and 10.45am on Wednesdays) and at St Mary's Church (4pm on Tuesdays)

Sparky Songs singing sessions for children aged 6 months to 5 years.
Cost: £8 per child, £3 per additional sibling.

Tots Gig

Online gigs for now and occasional pop-ups

A monthly morning gig series for a parents missing nights out and live music. These acoustic gigs bring an eclectic mix of talented & emerging musicians from the London world, folk and contemporary music scene for an intimate, relaxed performance.

A great chance to bring you little ones for their first gig experience.

Gigs usually take place monthly on Tuesdays @ Sutton House E9 6JQ but check out the website for updates (the timetable has been disrupted due to Covid-19 restrictions)

Best to book in advance - tickets on door as long as not sold out.

Soft play and Stay & Play



Little Stars Stay and Play sessions for children aged 0-4 and their parents/carers take place on Tuesday mornings 9-11am at Halley House School, Arcola St, E82DJ. Term time only. Sessions are primarily free play, with story, craft, snacks and singing time.



A Daddies and Mummies and  Babies Soft Play class (for babies aged newborn-7 months) takes place at Yummy Yummy in my Tummy on Wednesdays from 2pm-4pm.  Please check with the cafe direct before attending this class as times may vary,


Clissold Leisure Centre: Toddlers' World Soft play sessions for babies and under 5s take place at 9.45am and 11am on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Equipment includes soft play, inflatables, ladders, slides and much more. Cost: £5.25 per child.



Toddlers' World at Queensbridge Leisure Centre:  A fun filled and colourful environment designed to challenge and stimulate children under 5. Equipment can include soft play, inflatables, ladders, slides and a variety of other elements to  help develop balance, coordination and social skills. From 10am - 1pm or 3pm Monday-Thursday. 30 Holly St, London E8 3XW



Kidzmania indoor playground in Clapton - this is worth checking out on a rainy day. As well as great facilities, food and drinks are served on site. 28 Powell Road, E5 8DJ. visit

Please note - Local Buyers Club members can now save 10% off admission price here.



Clissold 1 O'Clock Club,  FREE Clissold House, Clissold Park.

Mondays 1.-4pm Monday-Friday.

Free indoor and outdoor play activities for the under 5s. Lots of great toys and friendly staff. Check out Rhyme Time on Friday mornings!

Tel 0208 8096700 visit



Messy Play at The Boiler House Community Space. Wednesdays from 10am till noon. A fun, messy session for children featuring playdough, shaving foam, water, paints, glue, collage, glitter and stickers. £2 per family.


The Round Chapel Families Project, which has run a nursery for over 13 years, is launching a new parent-toddler group as part of the Village Green project. The group meets every Wednesday from 9.30am-11am from October 1st 2014.  The group also has halls for hire for children’s parties. Email for more info.



Stoke Newington Library hosts FREE music and play sessions for under 5s every Wednesday from 2pm-3pm. Refreshments are provided.


Stamford Hill Community Centre Stay and Play and toy library. Thursdays during term time 9.30-11.30 and 12.30-2.30pm.



FREE baby and toddler stay and play sessions take place on Wednesdays from 9:30 to 12:30pm at the The Redmond Community centre (Kayani Ave, N4 2HF) phone number 020 8802 7580. They offer tea, coffee and biscuits to parents.

Hackney's brilliant children's centres also offer lots of great classes from cooking and singing to soft play.

To find out more click here


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