Craftercise - Airport West Melbourne - Review

Kate and her little dizzy ducks were blown away by the latest program in town: Craftercise. This new program located in Airport West provides children a range of physical, art & craft and messy play activities. I will definetely have to bring little Miss to Craftercise next town we are in Melbourne - such an amazing place! Thank you Kate for the review and Amanda and Aleisha from Craftercise for having us. xo Catherine

Craftercise is a unique, contemporary and holistic program for pre-school aged children that fosters learning through play.  It takes little ones on a sensory journey via a combination of messy play, sensory play, science experiments, movement to music and physical activity.


Founded by superstar women, Dr. Amanda Telford (PhD) and Aleisha Dakin who not only have FOUR university degrees between them but are also both mums, qualified and experienced primary and secondary health and physical education teachers with a love for all things art and craft. Craftercise might just look like organised mess but it is in fact underpinned by the latest international evidence in child development.  Amanda and Aleisha’s combined knowledge and passion for enhancing the development of children helped to systematically develop this program over many years and the result is simply incredible.

With programs designed for three different age groups - Messy Monkeys 6–18 months, Dizzy Ducks 18months-3years & Crafty Crocs 3-5years - children (under the supervision of their parent/carer) participate in a range of engaging, interactive and self-paced circuit based activities using soft play, recycled equipment, musical instruments, sensory and play equipment. Weekly themes integrate activities across key learning areas including: literacy, numeracy, art and craft, movement and physical activity.

We recently attended an Easter themed Dizzy Duck session at Craftercise and were completely blown away by the entire experience.  Beginning the session with physical activities was perfect for my active toddlers who loved climbing, jumping, throwing, balancing, kicking, building and fishing.  Bringing the children together for a few songs - including an appearance by the popular multicoloured parachute - was a fantastic addition and a perfect transition to the art and craft activities and messy play. 

Moving into an adjoining area, the poppets didn't know which station to explore first!  With card making, collage, playdough (chocolate flavoured no less!) and coloured rice, as well as more messier options including painting, water play and chocolate mud it was a hard choice. Arlo dedicated most of his time to the chocolate mud station (no surprises there!) while Macy couldn't resist a twirl or two on the extraordinary 360° Flying Painting. Seriously, kids get to have so much fun!  What I loved most about the art and craft activities is that the focus was on the process rather than the final product and that the little ones were given the opportunity to explore each station at their own pace and with the freedom to use and develop their imagination and creativity.

If you’re looking for a unique party experience for your child’s next birthday, Craftercise offers a range of party options from which to choose.  Whether you prefer a physical activity focus, art and craft, messy play or a combination of all three, Craftercise can tailor a party to suit your special occasion and even specific themes. Every party includes one hour of activity time, one hour of party room hire, exclusive access to the venue, a Craftercise t-shirt for the birthday child, party invitations and a party host.  Each party is self catered (you get access to a fridge/freezer and can bring in or have hot food delivered too) + you are free to decorate the space as you wish. Amazing! Do you think I could have MY next birthday party there?  

If you are an early childhood educator working in a kindergarten or childcare setting or perhaps you are a parent who knows of a childcare centre that is always looking for new ideas to enhance their program? Craftercise also offer sessions - designed specially for educators - with a fun range of strategies to enhance children’s physical literacy and physical activity opportunities.  These interactive workshops cover a range of topics including, information relating to the physical, social, emotional and cognitive development associated with physical activity and sensory play and the association between brain development and movement.  

With all Term 2 classes already full, we highly recommend you contact Craftercise to register your interest and be added to their mailing list so you are amongst the first to be advised when Term 3 registrations open. This term booked out within days of opening – so you better be quick!  

For more information on Craftercise, head to their website.

For more ideas on what to do with the little ones, head to our blog or CBD Top 5 FREE activities or our popular Daily Spots List.