Growing Up Gifted (GUG) Review

Growing Up Gifted Review
Brought Sticky Bean for the Parent and Babe weekend trial class at Growing Up Gifted, otherwise known as GUG at United Square outlet.
Wow getting a slot for the trial class sure isn't easy and getting a slot to the trial class does not guarantee you a space should you want to sign up for their weekend classes.
The trial class cost $58.00. Should you consider sending your child to the trial class, please remember to bring a pair of socks for yourself too.
Growing Up Gifted Review
The Parent & Babe class at Growing Up Gifted is for children aged 8 mths to 1.5 years and only one parent/caregiver is allowed in the class.
You can find out more about their curriculum here.
Growing Up Gifted Review
Growing Up Gifted is indeed a popular choice and we'd thought to 'test waters' by observing how Sticky Bean would behave in a class at 16 months.
If she is ready for class, we thought it'd be good for her to attend classes like this once a week before it slowly progresses to a 2-4 hour playgroup and eventually childcare for her to make the transition easier.
Growing Up Gifted Review
And so we were advised to reach 10 minutes before the class start as we need to do registration. It was a blessing we were there early. Sticky Bean puked all over herself in the car and we need the extra time to clean her up and change her clothes. It was a good thing we always make it a point to bring an extra set of clothes for her.

And so the ''early-birds'' will start off with what they called ''Social Play: Table & Floor Activities". In this case, it's just lego bricks and buttons for the babies to play with on the mat.
Everyone in the class was a regular except for Sticky Bean, they seemed to know the routine so well!
Growing Up Gifted Review

Sticky Bean eyeing on the button that the boy is holding
and then Baby Ashlene decided to venture elsewhere instead of staying on the mat
Growing Up Gifted Review
When everyone is here ( a total of 6 babies/toddlers) the teachers (there were 2 of them) began the class by asking the babies to keep the toys back into the box. Of course, most of them were really cooperative. I reckon they are such regulars such that the babies were totally into the routine.

And then they began by singing a song, asking the babies to sit on the mat and a hello song. So here's the part on Sing & Phonics Play where there will be an alphabet letter & puppet of the week. Today's alphabet is the letter D and puppet of the week is a Deer.
and then there's Zoo-phonics game followed by Action Rhyme & Story Time as well as Literacy Activity. - Seriously don't really know which is which, I have no time to pay attention to the class a all.

The lessons were really pretty good if you have a baby/toddler who can sit still in class and pay attention to what the teacher is doing. In fact they did a lot of singing to entice the kids and all of them, being regulars, sat on the mat most of the time and paid attention.

But what is Sticky Bean doing while the teachers were teaching Phonics?


she's more interested in climbing the chairs than what's happening in class
Seriously this was the first time I felt the clock moving way too slowly during the first 45 minutes. Sticky Bean paid no attention to the class at all! And while the teachers were conducting the class or singing, Sticky Bean kept herself entertained by exploring the whole room, walking right up to the teacher and the whiteboard, trying to snatch the marker away or grab hold of the flashcard.
Gosh..I spent my full 45 minutes chasing after her and trying to restrain her tactfully as she will scream so loudly if I were to restrain her forcefully. 
At certain point, I almost wanted to grab the bag and just leave.

Just when i was close to doing that, it's BREAK TIME! I can't describe how relieved I felt.
When Mr. Keir came in during break time, he says I look almost green!

Oh more one thing, do remember to bring your own snacks for your little one else it's really going to be awful when everyone else is snacking and he/she can only look.
Growing Up Gifted Review
the only time she sits quietly on the chair

yummy! must have been really hungry from all the running
We're supposed to take turns and Mr. Keir was supposed to sit with her in the class after the break but looking at the situation and it's all mummies staying with the kids, I guess it'd be awkward for Mr. Keir. So I've to say goodbye to Mr. Keir reluctantly. 

And so the next lesson start, look at all the mummies and babies sitting on the mat and then spot where Sticky Bean is.
Growing Up Gifted Review
she found her way to back to the chair and  remained in the chair like this for less than 1 minute la

and so the moving of the chairs, climbing...etc began again
Noticed that Sticky Bean is wearing an old t-shirt now? that's because it's Art and Crafts after this lesson. During their snack time, the teachers will inform us to wear an apron for the babies/toddlers or if we do not have an apron, you can just bring an old tshirt so that their clothes will not get stained.

Sadly Sticky Bean is not so interested in arts and crafts too, I ended up doing most of the work for her, she's only interested in playing with the paint, getting her hands and nose dirty. And yes, I meant Nose!

see the paint on her nose?
Finally there's an activity that she enjoys and turns her attention to the class for the first time!
It's Bubbles time!! Even during bubbles time, the teacher will be singing..wow it's really a lively class for the babies/toddlers.

Growing Up Gifted Review



 

After bubbles time, it's finally the Music Lesson which is the only lesson that Baby Ashlene paid full attention and took part as well. We've to move to the music room and there's another teacher there playing keyboard where they sing and dance.
Baby Ashlene got so excited and automatically came over to me to sit on my lap and observe as the music starts.

I'm so glad my life became so much easier after the break as the lessons are more activities driven.

My Verdict on Growing Up Gifted
The not so good thing about Growing Up Gifted class and my experience are that Sticky Bean is too new to the environment and routine, reluctant to pay attention and being a curious toddler, she'd spend time exploring than to be bothered with what's happening in class.
This being a norm behavior from first timers (as what the teacher told me), the teachers tend to ''ignore'' such babies/toddlers which made me felt neglected and out of place.
Seriously, have you tried sitting in a room where your presence is being ignored? Or at a party where you know, nobody else and nobody acknowledges you even as you move around the room?
Yes that was exactly how I felt la...

Even though the curriculum looks good but the process and the teachers seems robotic, merely going through a routine. i.e. the teachers are not engaging enough. Sometimes, they will try to engage some of the babies/toddlers by calling their names, getting one of them to say hello and hi-5 to everyone else in the room etc but I do feel it's pretty superficial. Sorry to say this but I can't sense any passion coming from them. It's probably ''just a job''.
I will have higher expectations on the delivery of the lessons at this well-acclaimed place.

I felt outcast somehow and NO, I will probably not go back to Growing Up Gifted again. Perhaps when Sticky Bean is older, we might check out the other classes they have, she is just too active for such classes for now.


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