Children’s entertainer, Vanessa, established Tickled Skink in 2008.

Coming from a musical background (both her parents were school music teachers and her brother was an internationally renowned double bass player) she had grown up with first-hand experience of the positive connection between creative pursuits and the development of the human brain.

By the age of 14, she had already achieved Grade 8 distinction (ABRSM) on both the violin and the flute and has taught these instruments privately to children of all ages for the past 11 years. She also writes many of the popular songs regularly featured in Tickled Skink sessions.

From the age of 5, Vanessa also took Drama lessons. Utterly enchanted by the magic of theatre, Vanessa spent three years at Drama School (BSSTDA), qualifying as a professional actress and then working in Theatre-In-Education. She then went on to qualify as a Drama therapist too, using drama to help those with special needs.

Upon the birth of her own children (now 22, 20 and 18), Vanessa found creative ways to inspire them, fostering in them a life-long love of learning. She home-schooled them for three years and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it! In the years that followed, she also trained as a Montessori teacher and worked as a Nursery nurse. With an urge to share her enthusiasm and creative techniques with the world, Tickled Skink was born in 2008. The aim was (and still is!) to bring learning to life through Movement, Drama and Music, making it a totally holistic and creative experience.

She has been running groups with children of all ages, but especially the early year’s child, for the last 22 years.

My granddaughter has been regularly attending sessions at the local reading shop and really looks forward to them. The way each session is themed around a specific habitat with songs and movement makes it totally interactive and memorable. Watching children gently handling snakes and giant millipedes is testament to Vanessa’s skill in involving them. Brilliant!”

….Barbara Fothergill, retired teacher, Oadby