A local play group is helping make Mother Goose stylish again among parents and their children.
Singing, reciting nursery rhymes and using hand signs can all help parents better communicate with their babies, said Baby Rhyme Time leader Jen Wiebe.
"By teaching rhymes and songs, you’re communicating with your baby," said Wiebe, who leads the weekly Baby Rhyme Time class held in La Salle.
Unlike many play groups that focus on providing exercise and socialization for little ones, Baby Rhyme Time’s purpose is to teach parents how they can interact with their children before they are able to speak well.
About 10 mothers and 11 babies signed up for the class, which began in October.
Wiebe, a high school teacher now on maternity leave with her 10-month-old daughter Amelia, said sessions start with time for moms to visit. That is followed by 30 minutes of singing and reciting rhymes complete with hand actions. Moms and babies then look through books Wiebe selects from her large collection of children’s literature.
At the play group’s Oct. 25 class, babies wore Halloween costumes and were then read to from Halloween-themed books.
Jennifer Laluk brought her four-month-old daughter to the class. In addition to learning rhymes and songs, Laluk said the class gives her a chance to meet other local mothers with young children.
This is the first time Macdonald Healthy Child, a network of volunteers dedicated to supporting community-based initiatives for children, youth and their families, has offered the class.
Co-ordinator Shauna Hewitt said La Salle was selected as the class location because of the baby boom it’s experiencing.
"We have to go where the babies are," she said.
The class will likely be repeated after the holiday break. For more information, contact Hewitt at 204-736-3465 or firstname.lastname@example.org.