• The Best Children’s Classes You’ve Never Heard Of (Until Now)

    Our Winter Preview Of Under-The-Radar Winter Offerings For All Ages

    By New York Family


    However well you might think you know them, our neighborhood enrichment and athletic centers are always coming up with new and interested ideas. So for this preview, we thought we’d highlight some of these venues’ lesser-known but still worthy winter classes. Some have limited run dates this month and in early 2013, so be sure to log onto their websites for specifics—and stay tuned for next month’s full Winter Classes Guide in the magazine!

    74th St. MAGIC’s colorful baby gym has been called “a treasure chest for little ones” by the Wall Street Journal. Tiny Tumblers is a 45-minute class for children 6-10 months and 11-18 months in which they develop gross motor skills through a gently guided exploration of MAGIC’s specially designed equipment. 74magic.com

    Comic book and graphic novel lovers unite! 92Y’s Kapow! Cartooning encourages a love of drawing, storytelling, and reading, mixed with kids’ unique senses of humor. All teachers are professional cartoonists and graphic novelists, and classes are appropriate for ages 7-9, with additional cartoon programming available for older kids. 92y.org

    Want to take a stroll on Mars? In Digital Universe Flight School, a unique program at the American Museum of Natural History, kids in grades 6-8 will learn to navigate a solar system, galaxy, and beyond using Digital Universe. This scientifically accurate 3D digital map combines celestial mapmaking with sophisticated data visualization. amnh.org

    74th St. MAGIC

    Applause NYC’s Acting For 6-9th Grade Students is the class for those who want to take acting to the next level! Through acting exercises, improvisation, and in-depth character development, your child will learn the fundamentals of a true actor. Students work on challenging scenes that will be performed at their end-of-semester presentation. applauseny.com

    Join apple seeds as they take your child on a journey each week in their lil adventures class, based on themes pulled from their favorite books—like Wild West, County Fair, Rainforest, Camping, Birthday, and My Community, just to name a few. Kids will expand upon these themes through art, cooking, nature, and construction projects. appleseedsplay.com

    The Art Farm in the City’s Animal Care Class is an afterschool program that allows your child to spend time with live animals. Using a hands-on approach, your child will participate in science activities, stories, games, and crafts. Your son or daughter will also learn importance of care, respect, and responsibility for all living creatures. theartfarms.org

    Build character and confidence while improving strength, conditioning, and flexibility. Asphalt Green’s Martial Arts curriculum combines practical self-defense techniques with traditional punches and kicks to create an awesome workout! Classes are available for kids and adults. asphaltgreen.org/martialarts

    Kids in Sports

    Baby Loves Shabbat! is a weekly class for babies 6-18 months and caregivers at The Chabad Preschool at Beekman Place. The gentle introduction to Jewish songs is centered around a Shabbat party of music, parachute play, candle-lighting, and Challah baking—bringing the joy of Jewish traditions alive while focusing on children’s development. chabadsutton.org

    Little Aces Tennis at Chelsea Piers is an exciting new class for children ages 5-6 who are looking to become the next Roger Federer or Serena Williams. Players learn basic tennis skills while developing proper technique and simple tactics. Classes are held on basketball courts and utilize new tennis nets, rackets and balls. chelseapiers.com

    The Children’s Museum of Manhattan (CMOM) offers Preschool Prep, gentle separation classes in which experienced teachers guide children ages 2-3 years through activities including art, music, science exploration, movement, dramatic play, and group story time. Children gain self-confidence, independence, and the skills needed for preschool readiness in a safe, stimulating environment. cmom.org

    The Tiny Tot Fitness Program at Columbus Gym concentrates on balance, coordination, and fine motor skills, along with sports, props, and circle time. Mini gym/super gym classes provide an introduction to basic skills using the vault, balance beam, bars, floor, and trampoline. columbusgymnyc.com

    Applause NYC

    What makes The Craft Studio special is its quality of the projects and amazing art lessons. In the Hip Hop Crafts class, a hip hop diva will teach your child a routine after crafting an accessory—wristbands, bedazzled tanks, tie-dyed shoelaces, and much more—to go along with the dance. craftstudionyc.com

    Diller-Quaile’s Music Infants classes—for babies 4-8 months—foster development through singing and chanting, rhythmic taps and claps, and bouncing and rocking. In addition to a head teacher, each class features a pianist improvising accompaniments in a variety of musical styles. Music Infants courses at this accredited school begin in February 2013. diller-quaile.org

    Children have fun exploring different styles of movement and world cultures in Discovery Programs’ Get Up and Dance, for ages 2-3 with parent/caregiver. Using lively music, props, and simple steps, children learn spatial awareness, dance independently or as partners, and discover different global dances such as Indian, African, Merengue, and Salsa. discoveryprograms.com

    Eastside Westside Music Together’s Babies Class starts your baby, up to 7 months old, on a pathway of music development that will allow him to express inborn musicality. See how responsive to music your baby is and learn how to support these behaviors. Discover the joy of bonding with your baby musically. eswsmusictogether.com

    apple seeds

    Gymboree’s multi-level Play & Music program provides an active and playful approach that will have little ones ages 6 months to 5 years dancing, singing, and playing instruments together. Be it Beethoven or the Beatles, classic and contemporary musical styles are introduced for early exposure as you build a foundation of musical skills with your child. gymboree.com

    At Gymtime Rhythm & Glues, the Music Art and Gym (MAG) class engages child 18 months to 3 years old in three diverse yet related disciplines, building complementary skills in music, art, and gym. Teachers introduce art activities, instruments, and songs, then kids explore the state-of-the-art gym, learning balance, flexibility, and safety skills. gymtime.net

    This winter, Hands On! A Musical Experience presents Sounds of New York, based on the rich environment of our city. You’re invited to join for an imaginary journey through Central Park, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Broadway, and other places, as the class listens to and recognizes the many surrounding sounds. handson4music.com

    The Making Jazz Friends winter term of WeBop, an early childhood jazz education program, focuses on getting to know legendary jazz musicians and celebrates some of the greatest musicians of all time. Kids sing with Louis Armstrong, share their favorite things with John Coltrane, and have a blast with family and friends! jalc.org/webop

    Asphalt Green

    The Fencers Club at The JCC in Manhattan teaches fencing to students while imparting the foundational character-building values and skills that are integral to learning and life. Students learn to fence within a structured program designed to teach, inspire, mentor, and motivate them to achieve higher levels of success. jccmanhattan.org

    Jodi’s Gym Accelerated & Advanced Gymnastics offers the perfect classes for children ages 6-12 who love gymnastics, have a certain level of expertise, and want to advance their skills in a non-competitive program. These Jodi’s Gym programs allow each child to work towards his or her personal best. Children may choose one or two times per week. jodisgym.com

    For teens applying to college, Kids at Art offers advanced art training and help in its Teen Portfolio Classes. All art projects are oriented towards building creativity and technical skills. Students divide their time between drawing and painting in a variety of media, in subjects like still life, portrait, and figure. kidsatartnyc.com

    The Creative Athlete program offered by Kids In Sports incorporates their Multi-Sport program along with a creative component that features a preschool-like environment. This class is a two-hour drop off for children ages 2.5-3.5. A healthy snack is provided each week as well as a fun craft to take home. kisnyc.com

    Diler-Quaile School of Music

    Kidville‘s After School All-Star Club is a new program for 3-5 year olds, meeting 3 days/week with activities in gym, art, dance, science, and more! Children will enjoy experiments from Savvy Scientists & Awesome Engineers, create structures inspired by the Construction Junction class, and kick, dribble, and score during Kidville Sports. kidville.com

    My Gym Martial Arts incorporates the technique and discipline of a traditional studio in a fun, nurturing atmosphere for children ages 3.5-6 years. Students practice kicking, punching, blocking, yelling, stretching, running, and jumping—while learning respect, discipline, and self-control. Belt levels are a strong motivator as children master different stages. my-gym.com/ny

    New York Theatre Ballet & Ballet School NY announce a new pre-ballet class for 3- to 4-year-old children—the perfect introduction to dance and music from the company that presents Once Upon A Ballet at Florence Gould Hall! For information and registration, contact Roseanne Wells at admin@nytb.org

    In Poppyseed Pre-nursery’s Toys, Tots ‘n Tunes, little ones jump in the gym, cook in the kitchen, play with dolls, and connect the train tracks. As they make friends, they can pull out the drums, shake the maracas, learn new rhythms, sing with all their hearts, and explore music like never before. poppyseedprenursery.com

    Super Soccer Stars

    The beauty, grace, and athleticism of the Isadora Duncan technique builds strength, musicality, and freedom of movement—important tools for the young dancer. The School at Step’s class for ages 4-6 utilizes basic skips, runs, leaps, and improvisational themes to explore the artful play of dance. Classes are taught by The Isadora Duncan Dance Company. stepsnyc.com

    Looking for a new activity for your toddler? Come join Kick & Play as they introduce him or her to Mimi & Pepe in their fun Pre-Soccer And Movement Class for ages 12-24 months. It’s never too early to start kicking! kickandplay.com

    TADA! Youth Theater‘s weekly T.O.T.S. class (Theater on Their Scale) is intended for the youngest of thespians and their caregivers. This unique program develops language and coordination through musical movement, incorporating song, music, and story using cooperative play and creative exploration—a perfect blend for toddlers and adults too. tadatheater.com

    Taste Buds Kitchen’s Let’s Make cooking classes tackle a new recipe every session, alternating between savory and sweet. Enrollment is rolling, so it’s always a good time to join these special weekly classes and make cooking friends this winter. When it’s cold outside, the kitchen is warm and toasty! Appropriate for children ages 2-8 years old. tastebudskitchen.com

    The Craft Studio

    Take a trip back in history with Talia and her Time Machine! This winter at TLB Music, children are traveling through the decades and meeting all kinds of music while learning about our country’s cultural history. They’ll experience Ragtime, Classical, Swing, Jazz, Rock and Roll, Folk, Disco, and much more. tlbmusic.com

    Be sure to see the full winter classes guide in our January issue coming soon!

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