Monday, September 20, 2010
Tucked into a Burbank business district just off of Victory Place is Kuki's Playshop, a special play space for small children that blends imagination, creativity and movement.
With its gingerbread-baby mascot Kuki (pronounced "cookie") making appearances on murals, T-shirts and as a super-soft puppet, Kuki's Playshop serves as an inviting tot spot that makes playtime easier for little ones because it's just for them.
CC and I had the chance to visit Kuki's on Saturday for the Playshop's grand opening Children's Festival. In addition to playing carnival games, checking out Mommy-Baby yoga, exploring colorful items from Discovery Toys and leaping into the indoor ball pit and toy treehouse, CC also had the opportunity to listen to The Library Fairy tell the story of "Conejito," the little bunny that meets a few hungry predators on his way to visit his Tia Monica.
Tapping on her drum and encouraging the kids to clap and sing, The Library Fairy had CC hooked from the moment she appeared in her purple pigtails and wings.
"She's a good listener," The Library Fairy said to me about CC after story time, which, of course, made me high-5 myself in my mind.
Most of the children who attended were from the "3 years and under" set, and that's exactly what Kuki's Playshop creator and founder Aimee Hui had in mind.
With degrees in education and a certificate in arts management, Hui has made it her mission to provide early childhood programs for kids in the L.A. area, particularly around Burbank, where she noticed a need.
The programs she offers at the Playshop, through her company imagi xxL, focus on arts integration and cultural diversity. There is music time, story time and, of course, play time. (In fact, she's offering 2 free demo classes for September. Click here for more info.)
CC's right on the cusp of outgrowing a program like this one, but this would have been great for her at 1, 2 or even the beginning of 3. Giving smaller children the opportunity explore their world through music, stories and dance -- on their level, with smaller toys and smaller spaces -- is something that's special and so worthwhile.
1036 N. Lake St.
Burbank, CA 91502