Early Links' Big Yellow Bus to hold intergenerational playgroup at RFBI Cessnock Masonic Village

A playgroup that connects Cessnock's youngest and oldest residents will be held once again next week.

Early Links' Big Yellow Bus will visit RFBI Cessnock Masonic Village on Wednesday, November 13 for an intergenerational playgroup, following the success of its previous visit on September 11.

Families with children aged zero to six years are welcome to attend and interact with the residents in an event that provides the opportunity for social, emotional and spiritual growth.

Early Links early intervention teacher Melissa Bridges said the playgroup is based on research that shows connections between young and old people can have great benefits for both age groups.

"The children have natural curiosity, and the older people enjoy watching that energy and youthfulness," she said.

"It was great to see that spark of energy."

The first session included rock painting, macaroni necklaces, planting succulents and a bean bag toss, which were great activities for fine motor skills in both age groups.

Ms Bridges said the Big Yellow Bus itself is also a great vehicle for children's gross motor activities, with a slide, flying fox and obstacle courses.

Next week's visit to the village will also include a pop-up choir with the residents.

Millfield mum Cat Hart took her twins Byron and Mollie to the intergenerational playgroup in September and said they would love to visit again.

"I took them because I watched the ABC series Old People's Home for 4 Year Olds and thought it was fantastic," she said.

"The twins are only one, so didn't communicate a lot but they put a smile on lots of faces."

RFBI Cessnock Masonic Village general manager Trudy Bailey said the previous visit brought a lot of joy to the residents.

"They were still talking about it days later, and they are looking forward to the next time," she said.

The playgroup will run from 9.10am to 12.30pm next Wednesday, finishing with a barbecue lunch. RSVP is required for catering purposes by calling Early Links on 4934 3773.

Early Links also runs a free playgroup at Cessnock West Public School on Wednesday mornings from 9.10am to 10.50am during school term, providing a place for families to connect, talk to professionals and learn strategies to support their child's learning through play and other activities.

Find out more at 'Early Links Playgroups' on Facebook.

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