01

What is Littlemagictrain?

Littlemagictrain adventures create a nurturing environment through engagement and invitation that encourages all children to participate.

Littlemagictrain allows children to express emotion, be included and everyone who takes part creates their own masterpiece through their journey.

There are many opportunities for children within the sessions to discuss and role-play emotions helping children work on their zones of regulation. Each session has its specifically composed music to move the story forward with illustrations and themed adventures for Early Years, SEND and Sensory Pathway.

This multi-sensory activity is an ideal springboard for further learning that ranges from dialogic reading to physical literacy using creativity and role-play as the sessions are a bridge between the imaginary and real world.

Just some of the learning outcomes

  • Improved confidence in their own abilities
  • Improved speech, language and communication skills
  • Improved gross motor control and physical literacy
  • Building relationships by working together, turn-taking and leading
  • Listening skills and musicality as we have many tempos and rhythmic patterns in the music.

02

Our Story – The Littlemagictrain Journey

The Birth: 2004 – 2010

During this time Gina met Jonathan Still and Daniel Jones the original masterminds behind the music and the Littlemagictrain was officially born in the spring of 2004!

Littlemagictrain has been tried and tested over the last 15 years through different venues and ways of delivering from managing classes to licensing (dance teachers/leisure centres/pre-schools and Butlins) with over 100,000+ children per year participating in classes.

However during this time the financial crisis had a major impact and changed Littlemagictrain forever.

Gina had reports from teachers that some children were being excluded from sessions and being made to sit on the side and watch the others.

Finding this hard to understand Gina visited a few settings and discovered that it was true as some parents were just unable to pay for any extras, quite understandable at this time of uncertainty, and the children were being made to sit and watch.

This horrified Gina who immediately decided to stop sessions in pre-schools and find a way of ensuring all children in a setting would be able to join in and never be excluded in that way.

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03

Our Story – About Gina

Littlemagictrain is the brainchild of Gina Bale. Founded back in 2002, inspired by her young daughter and a love of trains instilled in Gina by her late uncle and grandfather.

Gina originally trained vocationally for a career in ballet at Bush Davies School and then Scapino Dans Academie in Amsterdam (known now as Dutch National Ballet Academy). Due to an injury Gina could not fulfil this dream and at the time did not wish to attend the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague to train as a teacher.

Gina left the world of vocational ballet and spent a number of years doing different things ranging from Secretarial College, working with heads of Business and senior Civil Service to Pop Videos. After securing a place to read Law Gina was about to accept when, in an effort to get fit, she attended a ballet class at the Royal Academy of Dance HQ.

The teacher asked why Gina had not considered teaching and was offered a place on their teaching course a few months later. This was the start of 25 years plus of teaching dance – the best decision ever!

On graduation Gina was awarded the Iris Truscott Bursary and attended a Special Education Needs training course specialising in dance at the LABAN Centre, London.

Gina worked in ballet schools gaining experience and then set up her own school The Southfields School of Ballet in in South West London.

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