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GymbaROO-KindyROO kids are excelling academically, emotionally, in leadership roles and on the sporting field. Find us at: GymbaROO-KindyROO
Margaret Sasse, the founder of GymbaROO-KindyROO and the daughter of an ANZAC, was announced winner of the ANZAC of the Year and awarded the RSL ANZAC Medal in 2002, for her positive, selfless and compassionate manner of service to the community.
There are very few individuals who have given as much of themselves to helping children be the best they can be as Margaret Sasse. She spent a lifetime dedicated to educating parents and helping children achieve to their potential.
The GymbaROO story starts with ‘Marg’, a farmer’s wife, mother of five and ex-nurse, who took up remedial English teaching at the local country Technical School, (Wonthaggi Tech) in the late 1950’s to support the farm income. With the standard remedial reading offerings, not much was working for these school kids, then Marg came into contact with professionals overseas who were using new and innovative neurological movement programs to assist children with learning difficulties and developmental delays. She applied these techniques and the outcomes so amazed her that she co-founded ANSUA (A New Start for the Under Achiever), a centre providing sensory motor programs for children with learning difficulties.
The positive outcomes of the work provided by the ANSUA program to school-aged children were clear, however Marg wasn’t satisfied. It was obvious to her that signs of future learning difficulties were evident from a very young age, many years before a child entered school…
“Why do we wait for children to fail at school? Let’s prevent this from happening in the first place!”
She announced that she wanted to run programs for babies, toddlers and pre-school children, to help prevent the burgeoning problem of learning difficulties and not just ‘patch them up’ after they went to school and failed.
Much more research led to the creation of an early childhood neuro-physiological development rationale based on the premise that development was sequential and dependent on a child’s experiences, and that early patterns of movement provide the foundational neuronal pathways in the brain that enable higher–order thinking to occur.
This rationale led to the development of a specific movement based program that educated parents and provided fun developmental activities for babies and children from birth to five years. A program to offer all children the foundations necessary to assist in future learning.
Marg tried to share her findings and program with the Education Department and other educational institutions of the time however found no one who would listen to her ideas, (what would a farmer’s wife know??) She was even informed by one group of ‘educational experts’ that what she was doing was tantamount to ‘witch craft’.
Marg refused to give up. She knew what she was doing was having a dramatic effect on the learning ability of children.
“We’ll if no one else is going to listen, I’ll jolly well do it myself!”
…and GymbaROO was born.
Thank goodness Marg didn’t give up. Now, thirty years down the track, the supporting documentation is vast and undeniable. Mounting empirical evidence now supports the underlying concepts upon which GymbaROO was founded. Neuro-scientific studies confirm that the experiences a child has in the earliest years of life are absolutely critical for brain development and for laying down the foundations for all future learning. It is during this time that much of the essential wiring linked to learning is laid down. There is a direct relationship between activities and the stimulation children receive when they are babies and young children and their ability to do well at school.
Marg was right all along. The GymbaROO program now comes highly recommended by professionals.
From humble beginnings in a local church hall with equipment made by Marg’s beloved husband (Harry), GymbaROO is now indisputably Australia’s most popular and successful parent-child education program, providing quality neuro-developmental programs to hundreds of thousands of babies, children and parents throughout Australia and worldwide. The programs are gaining even greater popularity as more and more evidence is being documented confirming the long-term benefits of GymbaROO. Children who have been through the GymbaROO program are excelling academically, on the sporting field and in leadership roles. School teachers are describing those children who have been through GymbaROO as having higher levels of concentration, better behavior, confidence and communication skills and being generally more socially mature and physically capable than their peers.
GymbaROO programs are also run in some childcare centres, and GymbaROO Sensory-motor Programs are having spectacular results in participating Primary Schools. GymbaROO’s outreach programs also include a Distance Neuro- Education pack and an extremely popular online series of baby classes: Active Babies Smart Kids.
In conjunction with her sister, Dr Mary-Lou Sheil, Marg produced a video (now DVD) series The Importance of Being an Infant, 1, 2, 3, and 4 which is used all over the world in universities and specialist clinics, and by the majority of the Maternal Child and Family Health centres in Australia.
Margaret also wrote books for parents; ‘If Only We’d Known’, (now in its seventh edition) ‘Tomorrow’s Children’ and ‘Smart Start’. Even in her late seventies this dynamic daughter of an ANZAC remained at the helm of the business she had created. She also ran a consulting service for parents who were concerned about their children’s learning, travelled between GymbaROO centres in Australia and overseas, and ventured all over the world to catch up on the latest research in the field of early learning. Her passion and drive to deliver the latest information to parents on how to help their children develop never waned.
During her twenty-six years at the helm of the business Margaret never drew a salary or a Director’s fee. Every penny she made was tunnelled straight back into the business, so as many children as possible could have an opportunity to attend a centre somewhere in Australia and overseas or have access to the GymbaROO outreach programs.
In 2009, at the age of eighty, her dying words to her family were… literally, “Save the children of the world.” GymbaROO is now run by this next Sasse generation.
Margaret touched the lives of hundred of thousands of parents, teachers and children with whom she worked over the years. She has left the world a significant and lasting legacy. Her work lives on through the large numbers of individuals trained to deliver the GymbaROO programs to parents and their children. Through these programs, future generations of children and their parents will have access to the knowledge and skills that are necessary for successful development and later learning in school, thereby enabling children to achieve to their genetic potential.
The ANZAC spirit embodies shared characteristics that Australian and New Zealand soldiers possessed on the battlefields of war, including those of endurance, courage, ingenuity, good humour, being stoic and, at times, being irreverent in the face of authority. The ANZAC spirit of her father Sir Wilfred Kent Hughes lived on in Marg, a truly deserved recipient of the ANZAC Medal.
GymbaROO is known as KindyROO in southeast Queensland and internationally. and our online 12 part series for parents and babies (birth – crawling) is called the Active Babies Smart Kids: BabyROO series. Today there are over thousands of parents babies and children throughout Australia and New Zealand, enjoying our highly acclaimed programs.
Thousands of parents, babies and children are presently involved in our programs and creating rising stars. GymbaROO-KindyROO kids are excelling academically, emotionally, in leadership roles and on the sporting field. Come join all the fun and learning! “GymbaROO – The best decision I ever made for my child.” Classes from 6 weeks old – 7 years GymbaROO KindyROO
Active Babies Smart Kids – Online Baby Classes
GymbaROO-KindyROO’s online series of baby classes is taking the parenting world by storm! It is highly recommended by doctors, paediatricians, early childhood experts and the Maternal Child and Family Health Nurses Association. This series is being called: “The essential guide for parents”. Join the thousands of parents already playing with their babies from birth, in the best way for brain and body development and laying crucial foundations for future learning. What happens in the first year, not only matters, it matters a lot!