Little Kickers, Peckham Rye

We once took one of our children to a Beavers class in Eltham. It was held in a small, battleship grey portacabin with bars on the windows. Oddly for a movement reputed for its woggle-fastening fastidiousness, the session was complete chaos.

As more and more six-year-olds piled in to the room, the Beaver Leader's response was to throw ever-larger numbers of balls and bats at the problem. It was half-an-hour of battle-royale that our six-year-old novice was ill-prepared for. As we left the class, we were told off by the most senior Beaver Leader for parking in the wrong place, violating an unwritten rule, which gives prime spots to the Beaverati.

Our first visit to Little Kickers - a company that runs football classes for 2-5 year-olds - was in stark contrast.

Classes are held in a community centre, set in the grounds of a small church, just off Peckham Rye. It is bright, light and well-loved. The class is planned and structured, with exercises that vary each week. Better still, they are delivered by three coaches who know what they're doing and seem to enjoy their job.

Ali G-accented Coach Dave is brilliant, controlling a class of 15-20 toddlers with good humour and bottomless patience. A short warm up is followed by exercises which help develop their balance, spatial awareness and ball control. This is interspersed with lots of running around and chasing after bright plastic cones. Every kid gets a turn to try each of the exercises, which means that patience is one of the qualities they learn first (in Brockley Central Junior's case, this was a lesson hard-learned).

While there is plenty of actual football involved, children don't have to be football fans to enjoy it and parents are encouraged to join in during free time, which means lots of enthusiastic dads demonstrating their flicks and back heels with miniature padded footballs.

Classes are held on Saturday mornings at St Peter with St Clements Church Hall, Friern Road, SE22. The price is roughly £7 per session. They are currently operating a short-waiting list.

Until recently, Little Kickers ran a class in Telegraph Hill, which apparently closed due to lack of demand, which is a great shame. If they ever think about bringing it back to the Brockley area, we heartily recommend that you give it a go.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bring back the Telegraph Hill Classes! I now have a son!!!

Monkeyboy said...

Beaverati!! that made me laugh! Keep it up...

I used to be a cadet when I was a kid, lets not get into a debate about teaching kids how best to drop a man at 500 yards with a high powered miltary rifle, but I do remember the 'Officers' taking the whole thing far more seriously then the kids.

Brockley Nick said...

It was a moment of the sort of pointless officiousness which I had thought only really existed in sunday teatime sitcoms.

Tressillian James said...

I loved the Battle Royale reference...I can see it now

Brockley Nick said...

Perhaps, instead of spending that money on upgrading silly old playground equipment, we could put it towards those exploding collars for our feral youth?

The Cat Man said...

They would be good for some adults too

Monkeyboy said...

Nick's getting all 'Daily Mail' must be having a bad day.

Tressillian James said...

Brockley Royale...Everyone locks themselves in for a long weekend and watches the action from upstairs windows and roof gardens...

The Cat Man said...

Bah, populist!!

Anonymous said...

Hehe.... beaver

brockley mutha said...

the brockley beavers are looking for members.

Anonymous said...

ho ho! hard to tell if that last one was a sublime piece of double-entendre

Headhunter said...

Oh dear, this thread appears to be taking a "Beavis and Butthead" turn...

Anonymous said...

good to see you getting out more Nick, and giving your children some time, but sorry to hear about your problem with beavers...

Tamsin said...

Alas you weren't here to plug the Telegraph Hill Little Kickers sessions when they were there.
Do look out, though, for what is available in the Centre, in general - links through the Hill Website and those in the Revelon Road Triangle will have had a Hilly Telegraph.
The Telegraph Hill Centre has no public funding so the activities it hosts have, most of them, to be financially viable even though we take a view on occasion to assist with rent-free periods. Therefore most of it is on a use it or lose basis.

Tamsin said...

Alas you weren't here to plug the Telegraph Hill Little Kickers sessions when they were there.
Do look out, though, for what is available in the Centre, in general - links through the Hill Website and those in the Revelon Road Triangle will have had a Hilly Telegraph.
The Telegraph Hill Centre has no public funding so the activities it hosts have, most of them, to be financially viable even though we take a view on occasion to assist with rent-free periods. Therefore most of it is on a use it or lose basis.

brockley mutha said...

good football saturdays on hillyfields - all you fathers with sons. we used to go to powerleague in lewisham - good v. robust football. dulwich hamlet - on saturdays is fantastic - the best.

Anonymous said...

Much beaver involved?

Richard said...

The Hillyfields Sunday kickabout is worth popping down for too - the first time I just turned up & joined in. Nothing serious, I coped with my shocking fitness!

I have a few customers very interested in joining in, next time I have Sunday morning off I'll try to get them down to boost the numbers.

bg said...

Tamsin - would you know anything about how to join the classes at the Telegraph Hill Centre? I tried phoning - no answer. I dropped in - was put off by the receptionist (? possibly not, maybe just someone in a booth of some kind) who said the classes had nothing to do with the centre itself. Having been told to come back at the time advertised for the yoga session I was interested in, I found the place deserted. Do these clases actually exist, or have they been invented to send unsuspecting locals on a futile quest?
Thanks for any light you can shed...

Tamsin said...

Yes, she can be off-putting but is really nice once you get to know her...
For the evening sessions the Centre is hired out to the people who run them who do all the admin. and we have no control if for one week, or even more, a class is not run for any reason. But I'm sorry you had two wasted journeys. Which is the class you were interested in - Monday, Tuesday am or Tuesday evening? And I will try to find out more and post the information here.

And - mea culpa - I got the time for the Tuesday evening Yoga session wrong by half an hour in the Hilly Telegraph.

bg said...

Thanks, Tamsin...I was interested in an evening class..

Tamsin said...

Iyengar Yoga on Tuesday evenings - either 7 or 7.30 (I think the latter). Steph runs it and the mobile number we have for her is 07727 083 817. Astanga Yoga on Mondays at 7.30 (07976 333 981). Or that is also yoga in the Haberdashers' Aske's school at the bottom of Jerningham Road, but I am not sure which evenings. And Feldenkreis in the Centre on Thursdays at 6.30 www.vocaldynamix.com.

Transpontine said...

The Woodcraft Folk are way cooler than any branch of the scouting movement (no queen or country nonsense) and have active groups meeting at Myatt Gardens school on Monday night. Not sure what age kids can start at though.

Anonymous said...

Great football training at Honor Oak Park. Saturday mornings 10-12. Age ranges from 5-13. High standard of coaching with a real community feel. Get yourselves down there. Ive seen boys and girlstraining so looks as if all welcome

Anonymous said...

When I was growing up I was always told that the Woodcraft club were a bunch of 'Trendy Trinny' earth mothers and their associated snotty offspring. I consequently went to Cubs and just gritted my teeth through all the God bits.

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