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Super Summer Fun

Super Summer Fun at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena started with the shorts and t shirts on and the sun shining. The weather was fantastic and so the children were ready for super summer fun. Picnics in the village square were enjoyed under the shade of large trees.

Super summer fun was had when Carnival Promotions paid a visit. Lots of laughter could be heard at the magic show and the children loved winning prizes. We had so much fun that we invited them back for a disco. With colourful lights and loud music the children had a brilliant time dancing and playing games.

Leah our student, got the children to help paint and cut out some beach balls which were used to make a game. The children really enjoyed playing the beach ball game and competing against each other to see who would be the winner.

Gracehill Afterschool Club’s super summer fun continued with lots of art activities. These included lovely sand pictures being made. Lighthouses, seagulls and boats were all made and some taken home for mums and dads. Super summer fun was had by lots of children who helped with the display. Painting and decorating the display is always greatly enjoyed and a beautiful postcard was created to put on the wall.

We finished off our Super summer fun with a BBQ. Burgers and sausages were well received and enjoyed by all at club. A great summer was had by all at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena.

Fun Activities at Gracehill

Fun Activities at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena commenced with the children making a new display. The children decided that Space would be the theme. After a lot of research the children were ready to begin. Paint was mixed, and planets were drawn. The space display was starting to take shape. Great fun was had getting all the planets in the right position. The display looked fantastic with the black background and all the planets added. The astronaut finished the display off nicely.

Baking of course was also on the list for Fun activities at Gracehill. The cup cakes were purchased and sheep and ladybirds were created. Icing and mini marshmallows were used to make the sheep, finishing them off with two sweetie eyes. The ladybirds needed bright red fondant icing and again sweets were used to finish off. The children took they treats home and they were really enjoyed. These yummy buns reminded us spring and summer was near.

Fun activities at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena continued with lots of creative work. The Lego is very popular and lots of master pieces built. Arts and crafts still were designed and lots of great pictures were drawn and designed. Some children had a great idea! They decided to use the janga blocks to make a tower. The aim was to be able to use all the blocks. The building work began with a few falling blocks to start with. With a lot of Perseverance the tower was completed with a photograph taken to show of the hard work.

Congratulations also goes to Samantha and Sharon who completed their Level 5 in childcare and Shannon who completed her Level 3 in childcare. Well done to the 3 girls on their achievement.

More Fun activities at Gracehill to follow!

Easter at Gracehill

Easter at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena started with the children getting two weeks off school. Plans were made at club to have lots of Easter fun.

The children, with help from the staff got our new Easter bunny game ready. With aprons on and paint brushes at the ready they were set to get painting. A lovely colourful bunny was created. Easter Fun at Gracehill was ready to begin with lots of very competitive children.

The Easter fun continued at Gracehill Afterschool Club with some baking. The children really love the baking activities at club. Melted Chocolate and shredded wheat were mixed together. Bun cases were filled with the yummy mixture and mini eggs were added to the top. The children got to take these home to share with mummy and daddy!

Easter at Gracehill wouldn’t be the same without an Easter egg! At club the children used icing pens to decorate the chocolate egg. Jelly tots and smarties were used to decorate the eggs. Sprinkles were then put on to finish off the master pieces.

Gracehill Afterschool Club continued the Easter fun with water play. The children were very excited to have the water tray out for a mornings entertainment. The toy ducks, boats and the pouring cups were all used to provide great enjoyment. Even with the aprons on we had a few wet sleeves!

A lovely bright, colourful Easter display was also designed. The staff and children had a lot of Easter fun putting the display together. A beautiful apple blossom tree was painted. The children then added on bunny rabbits and chicks to make it complete. The display reminded us all that Spring was here!

Great Easter fun was had by all at Gracehill Afterschool Club.

February Half Term

Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena had an exciting February Half term. A well earned break from home schooling, and a lot of planned activities organised for the week. It was going to be a great half term week at Gracehill!

February half term started with nice new playdough. Carly was in charge of making the colourful playdough. The children really enjoyed making pretend buns and cakes. Each child then kept their own playdough in a bag. This then could be used by the child another day. This was great fun and so relaxing!

Gracehill February half term wouldn’t have been complete without yummy homemade pancakes. Pancake Tuesday was a great excuse for Shannon to get on her apron and get baking. Chocolate spread, butter and sugar or syrup were some of the toppings available. Everyone went home with full bellies. Staff included!

Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena also enjoyed a few lovely walks. Gracehill Village is a beautiful place to take a walk. Coats on and the sun in the sky made the walk very pleasant . The hot chocolate back in club was gladly received, not forgetting the marshmallows on top.

February Half Term Talent show was really enjoyable. With so many talented children the show could have gone on for ages. We had dancing, jokes, magic tricks, art and singing. The staff enjoyed watching the wonderful talents the children displayed.

Gracehill Afterschool Club always like to play games. A couple of new games were made. The heart game was popular and with valentines day in February it was very appropriate.

Baking also took place at February half term. Cornflake buns were made and fairy cakes were decorated. Yummy buns to take home and enjoy!

What a busy February half term at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena!

Christmas Fun

Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena had lots of Christmas fun this year. In the run up to the Christmas holiday’s from school the children got busy making pom poms. Different colours of wool were got. The staff cut out the cardboard circles and that was the children ready to make a start on the pom poms. We had some lovely colourful pom poms to take home for Christmas.

The Christmas fun continued at Gracehill with a fantastic wall display. Who else would we have on the display but Santa Claus himself! And of course we couldn’t forget Mrs Claus. Carly, with a few little helpers got started into the display work. The children had great fun painting the finished Santa and Mrs Claus. They both looked brilliant while wearing their masks!

The children at Gracehill Afterschool Club also enjoyed making little elves. These were placed around our lovely wall display. This just gave it the final touch! Christmas pictures were popular for displaying as decorations.

Christmas Fun continued at Gracehill Afterschool Club with a party! Everyone loves a Christmas Party even the adults. With lots of lovely food to eat the children enjoyed some games. Pass the parcel and musical chairs are always a favourite. Lots of music and fun was enjoyed. Everyone likes to receive a present at Christmas. Party bags were given for the children to take home . Thank you to Flossy Treats for the lovely chocolate treats .

Gracehill afterschool Club had lots of Christmas Fun this year!

Autumn Lockdown Fun

Gracehill Afterschool club Ballymena had a great two weeks of Autumn Lockdown Fun. School’s closed early for half term, which allowed for extra fun at club. Lockdown Rocks was a great theme for the holiday fun weeks.

We started off our Autumn Lockdown Fun at Gracehill Afterschool with making a new pumpkin game. The children had great fun trying to get the highest score as they through the balls into the pumpkins mouth. We have a lot of competitive children! The swirly autumnal mobiles were made to decorate the room. Felt tips and colouring pencils were used to make these beautiful mobiles. A new display was made with a barn and the children had great fun helping to paint leaves and a barn owl.

Everyone brought their wellies for an adventure around Gracehill village. The garden square was full of lovely crisp autumn leaves and these were great to walk and jump in. The children collected large stones from the garden. These were washed and painted by the children. They were then added to the snake at the Moravian Church Gracehill.

At the end of the first week of Autumn Lockdown Fun we had our very own Afterschool’s Got Talent. What a talented bunch we have. We had singers, comedians, gymnasts and fitness experts as well as an artist. Pumpkin carving is always popular. John and Lily chose what pumpkin faces were to be carved.

The second week of Autumn Lockdown Fun was as exciting as the first week. We had a movie and treat day, with the usual popcorn and crisps to enjoy while watching Mr Peabody and Sherman. Baking was also on the agenda. The children enjoyed making Top Hats and decorating a digestive biscuit with yummy sweets to take home.

Gracehill Afterschool Club look forward to Christmas!

Re opening of Afterschool Club

Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena re opened in August 2020 after being closed for 5 months due to Covid-19. The staff spent a lot of time and effort making the club safe for everyone. Before re opening the club, a Covid-19 policy was put in place along with a risk assessment. New child friendly posters were ordered to display in the club. These posters were to remind everyone about social distancing and the importance of hand washing. Arrows were put on the stairs so everyone would know what side to walk up and down. Gracehill Afterschool club also got new hand sanitizing dispensers from Galgorm Group Ballymena.

On the 3rd August 2020 Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena re opened with all the new safety measures in place. The children were happy to be back to club and enjoyed meeting up with their friends again. The Lego, once again became the favourite, with some children building wonderful master pieces. The children decided to make a display of a rainbow, as this was the symbol used over lockdown to support all those working in the front line.

After careful planning ,the children, assisted by staff members, decided to make the rainbow using handprints. After getting aprons on, the children got their own tray of coloured paint. The children dipped their hands into the paint and then made handprints. After drying off the handprints they were cut out and a lovely colourful rainbow was created.

Gracehill Afterschool club are glad to be re opened and providing a childcare service again to all children and parents. Full time and part time spaces are still available at club. If you would like to enquire about spaces please email office@gracehillafterschoolclub.com or ring the club on 028 25638099.

Gracehill bake off

This new year has been all about baking for everyone at Gracehill Afterschool Club. Our theme was about winter so of course we had to make some snowball buns. We started with crushing digestive biscuits in a bag (a great stress reliever). We then mixed the biscuit with cocoa powder, condensed milk and melted butter. Taking a marshmallow, we made a ball of the mixture and wrapped it around. Finishing off with rolling in coconut.

Chinese New Year

On 27th January we had rice and curry sauce with crunchy prawn crackers for break. This was to celebrate the Chinese New Year. Most of the children had a taste of it all and some were asking for seconds!

Valentines Day

Gracehill bake off continued for Valentines Day when we made yummy Jammy Dodger biscuits. These are made by mixing butter and sugar together in a bowl. Then we added the egg and continued to beat until it was all well mixed. Next we added the flour and folded it all together to make a dough. After the dough was ready the children enjoyed rolling out the pastry. As it was for Valentines Day we cut out heart shapes to make our lovely biscuits. After removing from the oven and cooled slightly, each child jammed the biscuits together to make our Jammy Dodger.

Pancake Day

On Tuesday 25th February Shrove Tuesday was celebrated at Gracehill with homemade pancakes. Sharon and Shannon were the cooks for the day and after making up the pancake batter of soda bread self raising flour, buttermilk, caster sugar and eggs they were to put on the hot griddle. The children had a choice of toppings which consisted of strawberries, blueberries, bananas, grapes along with either syrup, chocolate spread, sugar and butter or jam. As you can see by our photos they were really enjoyable. Gracehill bake off went down a real treat and was thoroughly enjoyed.

Christmas at Gracehill

This month we have had lots and lots of fun and excitement getting ready for Christmas at Gracehill. The children enjoyed getting the Christmas display prepared. Carly made Santa’s sleigh and his reindeers which the children decorated by painting, sticking and lots of lovely glitter (everywhere). Santa is shown flying over the rooftops in the night starry sky! Lots of lovely baubles were decorated to finish off our display.

Christmas at Gracehill continued with all the children helping to put up the Christmas trees and decorations all around the room. Christmas wouldn’t be complete without a treat bag. Each child made up a bag with chocolate treats and Christmas pencils. These went home or hopefully not eaten in the car on the way home!

To help us celebrate Christmas at Gracehill we made delicious snowmen. These were made of giant marshmallows and chocolate coins and rolos were used to make his top hat. Strawberry laces gave him a nice scarf and chocolate chips for eyes! Everyone was pleased at how well they turned out and how tasty they were.

The annual dinner for Christmas at Gracehill had a great turn out as usual. We all had a feast of turkey with all the trimmings to fill us all up for the rest of the day! The children had great fun playing pass the parcel and musical chairs with the winners taking home a little treat!

We would like to congratulate Amber on her graduation in December. We are very proud of your achievements and wish you all the best in your new post!!

Christmas at Gracehill was fantastic for everyone. Thanks to all who gave us many lovely gifts and we want to wish you all a Happy New Year!

Half term break

Over the half term break at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena, we have been busy doing lots of exciting activities and lots of outdoor fun! As the weather has been so good, we took the opportunity get outside. The children collected leaves and acorns to use for our beautiful Autumn display. They also enjoyed playing out in the garden catching the leaves as they blew off the trees with the wind. We enjoyed walking through the crispy leaves and discovering the lovely colours of Autumn.

Half term break saw everyone off school for a full week! The staff took the chance to entertain the children by helping them make tasty witches hats. The children made these by dipping an ice cream cone in melted chocolate and placing onto a biscuit base. Sprinkles and mini sweets were added to decorate the hats. The best part was being able to lick up all the chocolate off our hands and most of them were ate before they left Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena.

Some of the children helped with carving out pumpkins during the half term break. Not everyone enjoyed the smell or cleaning out the gooey insides of the pumpkins. What a messy job but some really loved it! Samantha had great fun carving out bats with her group of kids. Shannon, our new member of staff, helped with a group to make a Harry Potter themed carving.

Some of you may have noticed a new face at Gracehill Afterschool Club Ballymena. We would like to welcome Shannon to our team and we hope everyone will make her feel welcome and get to know her .