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DVCkidsMOM
01-22-2004, 04:49 PM
I am planning our first cruise and am worrried about what I've read regarding the Oceaneer's Club. Does anyone have independent, charming, and strong-willed children who have done well there? I had assumed before researching/planning that the kids areas were supervised areas for free play with some planned activities. Now it sounds like it is a very rigidly structured series of planned only activities. Is there any "free play" time between activities? I don't have crazed heathen children, but they will respectfully ask to do their own thing if they don't like an activity and I don't want to get "disruptive child" pages. Anyone out there had success with an independent child in the clubs - especially 4/6 year-old?

lbgraves
01-22-2004, 05:35 PM
DS was just 5 when we sailed 11/15. His favorite thing was playing on the pirate ship playground that they have in the center. There are several opportunites for them to choose between activities during free time. When an organized activity like a character visit happens, they rope off the playground.

kcashner
01-22-2004, 07:39 PM
There is actually a lot of free time, both in the club and the lab. It is on the schedule just like an activity, but is called stuff like "hanging in the lab."

The deal is not rigid at all. My charming, independent, strong willed daughter loved both places at the appropriate ages. The staff is very skilled in dealing with our little darlings, and gives them as much flexibility as staffing and safety allows. Worst case, they will page you to pick up your darling if he/she just can't/won't do what is needed at any given time...but this is rare. If your's wants to color while the others are dressing up, that's no problem. Especially with the little ones, there are lots of alternatives...

Wishing on a star
01-23-2004, 08:14 AM
To parents, regarding the Kids Club and Lab.

Yes, the activities are very structured.... This is, of course, out of necessity. The Free-Play areas are off limits during activities. For example, for the visit with Snow White, they used tape to mark lines on the floor, and the children are all instructied to sit on the taped line, listen to the story, make the appropriate character faces, (Grumpy) (Sleepy) etc.

We had taken DS(5) for the main activities, and he really missed out on that rare Free Time! If your child is not there during this time, they will not have the opportunity to play on that pirate ship/slide. DS favorite thing he talked about was not making flubber in the lab, but the Free Time to play in the Lab afterwards, before we returned to pick him up!

Do not discount this all to rare Free-Time. Check your childrens navigators and plan accordingly! :D