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  • Vic Park Community Centre

Skillshare Dad's and Daughter Hair Dressing


Was it cute? Yes

Was it fun? Yes

Was it perfect? No

What we’d do differently:

  • smaller groups size,

  • make sure we split into tighter age groups, eg, 3-4, 5-7, 7+ and tailor teaching to those groups

  • make sessions 30 mins for the little ones and 45 mins for the older kids as we can learn and teach more for them.

Last week we had dads and daughters hairdressing lessons! Here's what we learnt and how next time we will make it even better!

We designed the event with two sessions in mind. The first one at 1030am for children under five years old and the second one at 11am for children over five years old. It seems, however, that we didn’t communicate this well to the participants as we had a full class in the first session and only two families in the second session. Some people brought their whole family (mum included) and others just came as dad and daughter. The full class of dads and daughters was a brilliant chaotic ball of cuteness. Anyone that has been in a room full of three to seven year old children would know that it’s loud, really cute and quite hard to control!

Photo of dads and daughter in a circle learning hairdressing
The beginning of the first session while attention spans were holding out

We had five amazing volunteers for this event. Michael and Clare from O’Dowd Christie hair and their two daughters (hair models) and one son (doorman). Michael and Clare are hairdressers by trade and were amazingly generous and super great with the kids. In the first session, they taught the dads how to brush hair properly. This was an eye-opener for some of the dads, who previously were pulling hair and so were banned from brushing by their daughters. Michael and Clare introduced and endorsed the tangle teaser, a brush that is gentle, but effective on kids' hair. If you don’t have one, get one!

We then had some lessons in a basic ponytail. For those that had mastered that there were some simple plaits next up. All the styles were based on what’s needed for the girls to go to school or daycare. Basically, it needs to be kept up and off the shoulders (it’s a nit thing).

Plait into a pony: good for all day at school.
Plait into a pony: good for all day at school.

In this session we had too many families at once. It meant that there our two volunteers couldn't attend to the various needs of our participants and their different age stages, hair lengths and attention spans. There was one family with a three year old whose hair wasn’t as long as the other girls, and so they couldn’t engage in the pony and the subsequent lesson. As three year olds aren’t known for sitting still for long periods, she was bored by the time we were halfway in, which is entirely reasonable. On the other hand, there were some five year olds that had thick hair and all the patience in the world and needed more attention from Michael and Clare to understand how to get the hair they wanted.

If we were to do it again, we would cut the ages into smaller groups and have fewer families to a session; five families each lesson would work best in this setting. For three to four year olds we would do a 30 mins session on basic hair brushing, tying a pony, using slides and a discussion about what you need to do every day. For five to six year olds we would do the above and add some plaiting in a longer session. For seven year olds and up, we can include the kids as active participants in sharing hairstyling knowledge and directing the workshop. For instance, we had one child bring a handwritten list to the second session of what she wanted her dad to learn (pigtails, ponytail, plait and French braid to be specific). Because we had only two families in the session, there was time for dad to learn the French-braid. He said that he still had some room for improvement but we were very impressed with his attempt and commitment to his daughter’s wishes.

All in all, it was a fun session and we hoped to give the participating dads confidence as much as skill. Below is a summary of feedback that we collected at the workshop. As you can see, people felt included and connected and that the workshop helped their overall wellbeing. But we could have done better at making them feel confident. We think if we implemented the above actions, we could increase confidence as well!

Outcomes data for the event
Data from surveys after the event

We are hoping to run another workshop soon! Please watch this space! And if you have any other feedback we'd be really interested to hear it.

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