From the Dragons’ Den
At the end of July, Little Dragons will have been in existence for 10 years. It seems a long time since the original seven Senior Dragons waited in the West End Room to see if anyone would turn up for our first meeting. Well, we knew that we would have one Little Dragon – my grand-daughter, Aleisha and her Carer, Frank!
Excerpt from our first Journal entry from the Dragons’ Den:-Today, 12th September 2006, found us awaiting the entrance of our first customers. Promptly at 10.00 a.m. our first Little Dragon roared through the door. The amazement on her face as she viewed the wonderful display of toys and activities was a joy to behold. Within minutes several other customers arrived and the magic really began. We had no idea what to expect either in numbers or participation so were absolutely delighted by the response by our 9 first-timers (aged from 8 months to almost 3 years) accompanied by Mums, a Dad, a Granny and a Grandad.
From that time to this, we have experienced much joy as we have met each week during term time, catering for up to 42 children plus Carers per session. It must be said that 42 toddlers make for hard work; between 20 and 30 Little Dragons is ample. However great or small the total number per week, it has always been a joy to take part and enjoy the privilege of belonging to the group.
One of the trickiest aspects of leading, in particular, Story Time, is the excitement of remembering each Little Dragon’s name as we welcome our young members. This can be difficult, especially on a week when we may have several Lily’s, Lyla’s, Leila’s or Tilly’s, two or three Harry’s or Harrison’s, and other similar-sounding names. Personally, the hardest week ever was when we had seven new LDs – a Ziggy, a Zeke, an Esperanza amongst them. I must admit that I wrote the names of the new attendees on my arm.
We still have seven Senior Dragons, although the line-up has changed somewhat since our inception. Two, who were the granny and the grandad involved as Carers on the first Little Dragons’ day, have been Senior Dragons for a long time. Some have retired due to other commitments or advancing years. However, the core group remains the same, all here week by week to enjoy the company of our little charges.
It’s a great life! Happy Days indeed. Long may it continue. Val Butterworth