Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions2020-05-04T13:54:26+01:00
How much does a Strings Club party cost?2020-05-03T20:05:39+01:00

Our Strings Club ukulele gurus parties last for 1.5hrs and cost £250 (incl. VAT).

With 30 children attending this equates to around £7.50 each!

Your child’s development is key2020-05-04T16:04:47+01:00

What enables our award-winning Holiday Camps to stand proudly apart from the rest is our passion and dedication in promoting the learning and development of all children in our care.

Through our carefully planned timetable that hosts a range of high-quality engaging activities, we aim to nurture the development of every child to ensure that they truly benefit from our their experiences with us.

Our Four Key Areas of Development

Every Holiday Camp focuses on our “Four Key Areas of Development” that we believe are important in igniting your child’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning. These include:

Music-Based Skills & KnowledgeCommunication & LanguagePhysical
Development
Personal, Social, & Emotional Development
Ability to play an instrumentAbility to respond well to instructionsUnderstand the importance of keeping healthyAbility to form positive relationships with others
Knowledge of musicAbility to express themselves with confidenceAbility to make healthy choice in regards to food Understand appropriate behaviour in groups

For examples of how we have implemented our “Four Key Areas of Development” into every single part of our daily timetable, please click here.

What Your Child Will Achieve With Us

For those children who are with us for the five-day experience, we aim for them to achieve a range of weekly learning objectives.

For those children who come to us for a day or two, we aim for them to achieve a selection of the weekly learning objectives.  

We even take into account your child’s Next Steps, to really ensure that they continuously develop their skills with us, love their time with us and offer you, as parents, confidence in us and peace of mind.

Can I pay via Childcare Vouchers?2020-05-02T15:02:58+01:00

We currently accept Childcare Vouchers from a range of providers for our Holiday Camps – visit our Ways to Save page for a full list. If your Childcare Voucher provider is not listed please give us a call and we’ll see what we can do.

My child isn’t in reception – can they join?2020-05-03T20:13:30+01:00

At the moment we do not currently accept those that aren’t in reception, however your child is more than welcome to join us at our Summer Holiday Camps as we cater for those in pre-reception and use it as a stepping stone ahead of their first term in a school environment.

Where do you currently operate?2020-09-30T09:38:20+01:00

We currently operate in:

North London – Hackney, Hampstead, Islington

South London – Greenwich, Tooting (Feb 2021), Brockley

West Midlands – Harborne

Warwickshire – Leamington Spa (Feb 2021)

If you would like us to come to your area or would like to run your own successful Holiday Camps with us, please contact us by calling 0121 296 9204 or email info@thestringsclub.org. We’d love to hear from you!

Locations
What does it mean to be EYFS Ofsted Registered?2020-09-30T09:30:00+01:00

Being EYFS Ofsted Registered ensures our standards are kept to a high level by having our Holiday Camps regulated and inspected by Ofsted frequently. We achieve this by:

  • Our team member to child ratio meets and exceeds Ofsted ratios
  • We are passionate about bringing music education to everybody and this includes children as young as 4. We believe children of this age should start learning an instrument as they are susceptible to learning, especially through our fun-filled, high-quality provision.
  • Our progressive programmes that aim to develop your child’s musical proficiency, life skills as well as love for music! With our Grand Concert where your child can demonstrate what they have achieved and what fun they have had with their new friends
  • Our range of workshops that help nurture a variety of skills from dance to musical theatre to creative arts to knowledge of music to ensemble playing
How will I be kept in touch about my child?2020-09-30T09:24:46+01:00

Before joining our Holiday Camp, you’ll receive a detailed, downloadable ‘Parent Info Guide’ designed to ensure that your child is fully prepared to have the time of their lives with us! It’s packed full of all the information you need before joining us, including details of what to bring.

We have a fantastic week of music-making, workshops and activities planned and a detailed Holiday Camp Timetable that will be distributed in advance so you can see exactly what your little one will be up to each day! You will also be given your specific Holiday Camp Managers mobile number to check in.

Throughout your week, you will also receive a daily newsletter including details on the weekly programme, exclusive offers and what the next day will involve. You can also see what your child will achieve with us here.

Do I need to find a venue before booking?2020-05-03T20:01:03+01:00

It’s not necessary for you to have a venue secured before booking with The Strings Club. However, as soon as you are able to secure a venue we advise that you inform us asap.

What if my child’s instrument breaks?2020-05-03T20:32:44+01:00

Don’t panic!

At The Strings Club we understand that accidents happen. Please get in touch with us as soon as you realise something has gone wrong – it may be easier to fix than you think!

Depending on what’s happened to the instrument we will either class the problem as ‘Wear and Tear’, in need of ‘Repair’, or ‘Damaged’. See here for more information.

Do you accept childcare vouchers?2020-05-03T20:36:09+01:00

The Strings Club offers the hire of a high-quality, suitably sized instrument for any child enrolled on a Term Time Course at the rate of £30 per term – less than £3 per week.

  1. If the request to hire an instrument is received by Head Office up to 1 week prior to the commencement of Week 1 then the availability of an instrument is guaranteed.
  2. If the request to hire an instrument is received by Head Office less than 1 week prior to the commencement of Week 1 then the availability of an instrument is not guaranteed.

Should you hire an instrument the associated Instrument Hire – Terms & Conditions apply.

If you wish to purchase your own instrument, check out our blog post on the recommended music shops in your area.

Why do I have to purchase 10 classes at a time?2020-05-03T20:25:13+01:00

When your child enrols or renews their Term-Time Course at The Strings Club, they are booking a place in the course of 10 consecutive lessons.

This means that even if they don’t attend their space has been reserved for them and no other child can take their place. Both our Strings Club Minis and Sound Start courses are specifically structured around this 10-week framework to provide a coherent and progressive path of musical development.

Online Safety | What Is Zoom?2020-05-04T15:22:52+01:00

Founded in 2011, Zoom is one of the world’s leading video conferencing software providers. It has a number of features, including video and audio conferencing, real-time messaging, screen-sharing and the ability to upload, share and search for content.

Users can start their own meetings or they can join meetings set up by others. The app is available to use across PCs, laptops, tablets and mobiles phones and is free to download on both the App Store and on Android.

We have chosen Zoom (over other platforms such as Skype) mainly because of its efficiency for parents to set up, access and log in.

We also chose to use Zoom for two main reasons:

  1. It focuses on the safety of children by offering a number of features and settings that companies such as The Strings Club can utilise. In brief, these include:
    • A waiting room – a virtual room that children wait in before gaining access to the main teaching room. The Course Leaders check all names before giving access. Course Leaders have the ability to decline any attendees and not allow them entry.
    • The ability to “lock” the classroom – once all attendees are in the classroom, this feature enables the Course Leader to essentially lock the room to ensure no one else can enter.
    • Strictly no screen sharing amongst “attendees” – this means that no children can share any information via independent screens.
    • Cameras off from the beginning – we know that some children don’t want to be seen and that’s understandable. That’s why all cameras are off from the beginning and if your child wants to be seen, you click “Start Video”.
    • Password Requirements – all sessions can only be accessed via a password. We change this from time to time and if so, will email or text all customers with the updated version.
    • Strictly no messaging – we do not allow any chat room style messaging on an online session. If a child has a question for the Course Leader, they can ask verbally.
    • Strictly no file transfers – no one can share any files between one another.
    • Our online sessions are not recorded. We do not allow any recording of sessions.
  1. Gives The Strings Club Course Leader in charge of the session (the “host”), the capacity to control certain situations if needs be.

For example, if someone gained access to the session who should not be there (eg Zoombombing), the Course Leader has instant access to shut down the session immediately or stop a video simply at a click of a button. Additionally, due to our waiting room functionality, a person cannot rejoin a session unless permitted.

All team members working for The Strings Club online sessions complete comprehensive training on the usage of Zoom. This is now a vital part of our Safer Recruitment policy and training.

Any updates that Zoom make, we communicate with our Course Leaders too via further training.

Do I need to stay for the full event?2020-05-03T20:10:16+01:00

Yes you will need to, however due to space we recommend only one parent / guardian attends with your child.

My child already has regular lessons and is very good – will they be bored?2020-05-02T15:06:28+01:00

Absolutely not – our course leaders are experienced at teaching lessons to a range of ages and abilities. Where we have lots of children with prior experience we will run an Intermediate Ensemble.

What is the Grand Concert?2020-05-02T15:01:38+01:00

Each Holiday Camp ends with a grand concert (Friday 3.15pm) – so your child and their new friends can proudly show you what they’ve learnt!

By the end of their time with us, your child will have experienced wonderful musical adventures, made new friends, and developed skills for life.

Does it matter that they are a complete beginner?2020-05-02T15:07:55+01:00

Absolutely not – we are the perfect introduction to an instrument for the first time! We find that lots of parents ‘try’ our Holiday Camps to see whether the instrument is a good fit for their child before committing to regular lessons.

What is a Named Contact?2020-09-30T09:09:14+01:00

A Named Contact is someone who is:

  • Authorised to drop off a child at a Holiday Camp

  • Authorised to collect a child at the end of the day;

  • To be contacted in the event of illness or an emergency.

How many adults do you have on site?2020-05-03T19:53:35+01:00

Our ratio is 1 adult for every 10 children, which is substantially above the minimum requirements for Ofsted, so we can deliver the best possible experience.

This is a mixture of a pastoral team (Holiday Camp Manager & Holiday Camp Assistants) and the Course Leaders. There is always at least one paediatric first aider, typically the Holiday Camp Manager, on site at all times.

For more information on our Safer Recruitment Process for all team members working for us, please click here.

How do you recruit, check, and train your team members?2020-09-30T09:13:44+01:00

The Strings Club Course Leaders are professional musicians who have extensive experience working with children, and a passion for teaching. Our pastoral team are experienced childcare professionals who usually work in schools during term time.

All team members working for us must complete our Safer Recruitment process before being offered any work. All attend training sessions and are evaluated on a regular basis too.

Can younger or older children join in?2020-05-03T20:03:27+01:00

Our Strings Club parties are designed for those aged 4-11yr olds.

While they are not suitable for those older than 11, siblings are more than welcome to participate in a younger family’s member party with us.

How many children normally attend?2020-05-03T19:56:21+01:00

It varies from camp to camp, but c.25-40 depending on the holiday/location/day.

How Our Zoom Sessions Work2020-05-04T15:31:07+01:00

On your Registration Email upon booking with us you will receive your Zoom link and password. We highly advise you keep this handy by book-marking the email for ease.

  1. 5-10 mins before the session, copy and paste the link into your web browser and click return.
  2. This will take you to Zoom and ask you for a password.
  3. Type in the password
  4. Zoom will then ask you for a name. Please enter your child’s first name only. Do not enter their full name.

You will then be taken to a waiting room to wait until the session begins.

Your child can choose to be seen or not. As safeguarding is paramount to us, all cameras are off from the offset and your child can choose if they want to visually interact with others by clicking “Start Video”.

Your child will then take part in the online session; at the end, it is vital that you click “End Meeting” to ensure you are logged out.

New to Zoom? 

We recommend you test your Zoom link beforehand and also the device that you will be using. This includes the sound and ensuring volume is accessible to use.

What device to use?

We highly recommend you use a:

  • Laptop
  • Tablet
  • Television

A phone device is fine however the screen is quite small for an online session and more importantly, the sound may not be efficient enough.

Online Safety | Overview2020-05-04T15:14:09+01:00

This Policy was developed with support from Désirée Abrahams of Day Associates, a business and human rights consultancy specialising in business and children’s rights. 

Since COVID-19 took over our normal lives, families have been forced to a certain extent to access a range of activities for children via the internet.

As an Ofsted-registered childcare provider, we want to remain as focussed as ever on the safeguarding and protection of children in our care. This policy outlines our approach to keeping your child safe whilst with us on an online session. We don’t want to stop there though. We also want to empower both children, parents and families alike to feel in control of their own safety whilst online.

It is important to state that we do not declare ourselves to be experts in the field of online safeguarding and child protection. However we feel that especially at this time where more than ever we are putting ourselves into virtual classroom environments which still feel a little unfamiliar, it is vital that we demonstrate what clear and effective measures we have put into place to ensure the safety of children in our care.

At The Strings Club, the majority of our online sessions take place on Zoom. We do have a range of pre-recorded activities on YouTube however due to the interactive nature of learning an instrument and music-making, we have chosen Zoom to ensure children get the most out of our sessions.

How much is it?2020-05-03T20:11:12+01:00

Our Discovery Days are completely free of charge!

If I miss the event – can I rebook for a later date?2020-05-03T20:08:44+01:00

Certainly! Simply take a look at what our Courses and Events pages here. Alternatively you can give our office a call on 0121 296 9204 or email info@thestringsclub.org

What if we miss a session?2020-05-01T17:35:11+01:00

If you know that your child is going to miss a session please get in touch with us.  If we are informed within 48hrs prior to the session we will be able to release their space and either transfer your booking to a future date or provide you with a credit note.

If we are informed with less than 48hrs notice this may not be possible.

My child isn’t a complete beginner – is The Strings Club for them??2020-05-03T20:18:23+01:00

There are two ways to enrol your child onto a Term Time Course.

We offer a payment plan that includes an initial 30% payment to secure your child’s place on a Term Time Course, followed by two installments of 35% each. If a 30% payment has been placed, the remainder of payment will be taken automatically from your debit or credit card in line with the payment plan.

You can also make payment in full.

You can also find more information on our special offers on our Ways to Save page.

What is your cancellation/refund policy?2020-05-01T17:33:31+01:00

We are unable to make any changes to your booking if we have been given less than 24 hours’ notice, and no refund will be issued.

If you have given us at least 48 hours’ notice before the date(s) you would like to cancel, we will refund you all monies paid and there will be no fee.

If you have given us less than 48 hours’ notice before the date(s) you would like to cancel, we regret to inform you that no refund is available except in the case of illness/injury. All claims must be supported by a doctor’s note in order to obtain a refund.

For more information, please refer to our Holiday Camp Terms and Conditions.

How many children can attend the party?2020-05-03T20:02:21+01:00

A Strings Club Party Leader is able to host a party of 15 children. For parties with 15-30 children, we will provide a Party Assistant to no extra charge to yourself.

We also accommodate for parties over 30 children, however there is an admin charge of £5 per additional child booked.

How can I get in touch?2020-05-01T17:18:50+01:00

You can get in touch with our office team in a number of ways:

Email: info@thestringsclub.org

Call: 0121 296 9204

Our regular office hours are 09:00 – 17:00, Monday to Friday every week.

During our Holiday Camps these are extended to 08:00 – 18:00.

Online Safety | Empowering Your Child2020-09-30T09:22:03+01:00

To ensure your child gets the most out of our online lessons and events, our Course Leaders start every lesson with a hello, register and a re-cap of our Golden Rules. These rules can be anything from making sure the session takes place in a quiet room (to avoid other children in the group being distracted) to listening and watching to the use of non-verbal language.

We don’t want only parents and carers to be aware of how we are keeping their child safe. More importantly maybe, we want children themselves to feel empowered and to know exactly how to keep themselves safe online.

We aim to do this in two ways:

  1. A special guide dedicated  to  your  child. We have created a special guide, aimed at children aged 4-11 in explaining what Zoom is and what they can do and not to. We aim for this to empower them and would appreciate if you could show them this before their first lesson begins. Feel free to print this too to keep as a reminder.
  2. “The Strings Club Online Session In Progress” colouring in poster – a poster that your child can colour in and stick somewhere whilst their online session is going ahead to remind family.
What will my child be doing?2020-09-30T09:56:09+01:00

We open at 08:00 each day for our Early Bird club -the perfect start to the day as it gives your child the opportunity to choose what they would like to do – think board games, arts and crafts, lego, selection of books, musical activities.

We kick every day off with our “Welcome and Music Games Session” – the perfect introduction for new faces and returning children alike! It’s an opportunity for everyone to get to know each other, settle in, and for any new faces to find a buddy.

We then split off into groups for our Learn Together, Play Together sessions where children will have 2 x 45min sessions on their chosen instrument.

In between these we’ll have a 30 min break for a snack and some time outside to ensure your little one gets to run around, grab some fresh air and play with their new friends. We then have a full hour for lunch. We ensure all of our team encourage children to eat all their lunch and in a sensible order.

After lunch we come together for our amazing workshops! Our workshops explore our carefully-created range of ten music-based workshops – please see here for a full list. Each workshop has been designed by a qualified teacher to inspire your child and develop personal skills such as focus, teamwork and making new friends.

Each Holiday Camp ends with a grand concert (Friday 3.15pm) – so your child and their new friends can proudly show you what they’ve learnt! By the end of their time with us, your child will have experienced wonderful musical adventures, made new friends, and developed skills for life. See what your child will achieve with us here.

We then have our Late Club which is another session of free play ensuring that your little one is inspired right up until the last minute!

Childcare vouchers and tax free credits2020-09-29T17:37:51+01:00

Paying with childcare vouchers and tax-free credits  is easy

Save that little bit extra on our Ofsted-registered Holiday Camps by paying with childcare vouchers and tax-free credits.

Simply follow these steps:

Booking via childcare vouchers and tax-free credits can only be made over the phone. It only takes a few minutes. Our Head Office number is 0121 296 9204.

When contacting your childcare voucher provider to pay please do the following:

  • Enter the ID/account number of your booked Holiday Camp
  • Enter the amount you need to pay
  • Please provide a clear reference of your child’s name so we can locate your payment easily

Please note: If you are booking less than 2 weeks in advance of the Monday of your chosen week and wish to use Childcare Vouchers you will be required to pay on your credit/debit card to secure your child’s place.

Once we receive confirmation of your Childcare Voucher payment we will reimburse you for the full amount. Childcare Voucher payments can take up to three working days from the date we receive them to clear into our account. Please allow 3 – 5 working days for refunds to appear in your account. £1 booking fee is nonrefundable.

Download Info
Can I pay in instalments?2020-05-03T20:04:39+01:00

Of course! A 50% deposit is required at the time of booking, and the remaining 50% will be due one week before the party itself.

Online Safety | Zoom Top Tips2020-09-30T09:16:24+01:00

We ask that everyone in your home is wearing clothes during our online sessions.

This may seem like a silly request but it’s really important. If anyone at home has forgotten to cover up (even your baby sibling!), it would be a good idea to nicely remind them that an online session is taking place, and they may want to put something on.

We ask that everyone in your home minds their language during our online sessions.

Sometimes during our online sessions, we may want children to for example, perform a piece together or interact with one another – of which we will unmute the session. During this time, we do ask that the room is quiet as possible and no swearing or negative language is taking place. This is because everyone in the group will hear.

Make sure you are in a clear space with no information around regarding family/names of photos. This is for safeguarding purposes.

Camera usage – please make sure your camera is facing straight forward and not upwards or downwards. This is to ensure the Course Leader can see your child’s face in order to interact and also to see how they are playing their instrument (if in an instrument-based session, of course).

What’s the benefit of hiring of an instrument from The Strings Club?2020-05-03T20:33:41+01:00

Purchasing an instrument can be an expensive business, particularly for growing children.

Just like everything else, they can need the size up sooner than you think! By hiring an instrument from The Strings Club you are guaranteed a high quality, appropriately sized instrument for the duration of hire – so if they grow halfway through a term you can rest assured there will be the next size up waiting for them at their next lesson.

What if we miss a session?2020-05-03T20:31:18+01:00

At The Strings Club we understand that things don’t always go to plan and occasionally you might not be able to make a session. This is why we try to offer “make-up sessions” – an opportunity to join another class of a similar ability on a different day or at a different venue.

We will always provide you with that week’s ‘Practice Makes Perfect’ guide so your child still has plenty to work on that week.

If you know that your child is going to miss a session please get in touch with us, so we can let the course leader know. Unfortunately, if your child misses over two sessions in a term we may suggest that your child repeats that level next term.

Term has already begun, can my child still join?2020-05-03T20:23:07+01:00

If your child is a complete beginner, the latest they can join us on a Term-Time Course is Week 2.

Unfortunately, after this it is not possible to join the class, as by Week 3 they will have missed too much. However, they are very welcome to join us at our next Holiday Camp , or sign up for the next available term.

If your child has had lessons elsewhere, we will try our very best to locate a suitable class for them to join part way through a term.

Please give us a call in the office so we can find out what they’ve got up to so far. Once we have a good picture of their ability and experience, we’ll be able to advise what would suit best!

What is your policy on instrument hire?2020-05-01T17:30:26+01:00

Instrument hire is completely free of charge at all of our Holiday Camps.

Do you offer classes on a weekday?2020-05-03T20:37:47+01:00

At the moment, all of our beginner Term Time Courses run on Saturday mornings.

However, we would be more than happy to offer one of our award-winning programmes at your child’s school – please see here for more information.

My child requires medication, how should I inform you?2020-05-01T17:29:34+01:00

If a child attending a Holiday Camp requires medication of any kinds their Named Contact must complete a Permission to Administer Medicine form prior to or upon arrival at the Holiday Camp.

The designated First Aider will be responsible for administering medication or for witnessing self-administration by the child. The designated First Aider will record any administration of medication on a corresponding Record of Medication Given form to be countersigned by the Named Contact upon collection of the child.

A separate form is required for each medication prescribed and the Named Contact is required to inform the designated First Aider should there be any change to dosage or frequency of the medication.

The designated First Aider can only administer medication that has been prescribed by a doctor, dentist, nurse, or pharmacist and all medicines must be in the original container as issued by the pharmacy.

If the children carry their own medication (e.g asthma inhalers), the designated First Aider will offer to keep the medication safe until is required.

Under no circumstances will the First Aider administer medication against the will of a child.

Can you come to my child’s school?2020-05-01T17:20:31+01:00

We are always happy to offer one of our super-popular free assemblies in your area. To nominate your child’s school or to find out more info, click here.

Why should I choose The Strings Club for my child’s birthday party?2020-05-03T20:06:47+01:00

Our award-winning parties, are one of a kind! You won’t find ukulele parties anywhere else and we guarantee that your child’s party will be the one to remember!

Before the big event, you will receive free party invites, attendance certificates, balloons and a welcome pack delivered free to your front door.

Your little one and each friend will be ukulele gurus with our free hire of a ukulele for every child that attends. We can also tailor our parties to everything your child loves – think favourite pop and action songs.

We’re also running an offer where you can receive 10% off your total price plus a free Strings Club t-shirt for your little one if you book the day of enquiring with us.

Do I need to buy a book for my child’s course?2020-05-03T20:19:50+01:00

You will not need to purchase any books for your child’s Term Time Course. When your child joins The Strings Club, they’ll receive the following:

  • Free welcome pack via the post for both parent and child;
  • Brand new music book –  including a backing track CD (RRP £10);
  • End of term report;
  • End of term concert for friends and family;
  • End of term certificate;
  • Regular support via our “Practice Makes Perfect” Guides.
Why can’t my 4yr old learn the violin or guitar at your Holiday Camp?2020-05-02T15:29:09+01:00

We recommend that those that are 4-5yrs old learn the ukulele. It’s a much easier and lighter instrument for the children to hold. The size of the ukulele is better suited for them as well.

However, we do offer the violin for those aged 4-5yrs old at our weekly Term Time Courses – for more info, please click here.

EYFS Minis Programme2020-05-04T16:10:43+01:00

At The Strings Club, we are passionate about welcoming children as young as 4 – all day. This is why all of our Holiday Camps are EYFS Ofsted-registered.

What does being EYFS mean for your 4-5 year old child?

  • Our Minis programmes are specifically designed for children aged 4-5 in reception and work alongside our EYFS policy.

  • Our morning “Learn Together, Play Together” sessions and range of afternoon workshops work closely with the 16 EYFS play types and 7 areas of learning.

  • Your child will receive a Key Person – an experienced Early Years practitioner.

  • Your child will also receive a “Daily Diary” to ensure that you are fully aware of what your child has completed that day and how you can support them in their ongoing learning at The Strings Club.

Our summer Holiday Camps are a great way to prepare pre-school aged children for moving up into primary school.

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