Within the multihued walls of Kidville’s indoor playland, tykes expand their minds, network with members of their peer group, and deplete their vast energy reserves. Babies, toddlers, and kids 6 or younger delve into classes developed by Kidville’s early-childhood-development gurus. Burgeoning Beethovens can swivel their hips, flex their sing-along muscles, and edit their massive music manuscripts during one of Kidville’s music and dance classes, or enlist in one of the art classes to create a piece that captures their inner rage toward broccoli. Fun and fit gym classes let tots run, roll, and hover through gauntlets of plush blocks and spongy play mats. Clasping hands and scampering legs can also roam freely through Kidville’s sprightly indoor playspace, though all munchkins must be supervised by a parent, guardian, or trustworthy primate.
When Roald Dahl wrote Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, he imagined a much-coveted golden ticket that granted access to myriad wonders and unveiled the inner workings of an entire industry. MetaBody created a real-life version of that ticket with the MetaBody Yoga & Fitness Pass, though it applies to fitness instead of candy. The pass grants access not to a single gym but to classes at a variety of local studios, specializing in everything from yoga to boot camp. With the freedom to move from location to location, students can sample different regimens, instructors, and styles of exercise to cobble together a program that fits their needs and goals. MetaBody's nutritionists supplement class packages by coaching clients in healthy eating, recipe cooking, and speed-reading nutrition-fact labels.
"I am magnificent. I am powerful," is the mantra fitness instructor Carl J. Powell III strives to instill into his students, hoping to empower them with the knowledge that they can take charge of their health. To help students make these changes, Carl—a wellness guru who has been featured in Ebony magazine—has made more than 20 fitness videos, and has traveled the world training dancers. His team of instructors leads private and group fitness classes at The Magnificent Body. They lead Pilates, yoga, and three styles of barre, which blends ballet, yoga, and Pilates exercises to sculpt long, lean figures. Before students come to their first class, Carl assesses their athletic abilities and fitness goals in a 30-minute personal consultation.
Further encouraging folks to live healthier lifestyles, Carl hosts Magnificent Living, a one-hour talk show that airs on Laurel Cable. Six days a week, he doles out exercise and diet advice, such as eating fruits and veggies instead of butter sculptures.
The YMCA of Metropolitan Washington has been serving families and family-free individuals for more than 150 years. Today's deal gives you one month of family membership (good for two adults and any children under the age of 21 residing in the same household, normally $130) to this venerated institution and its numerous locations, which have numerous amenities. In addition to accessing fitness equipment and indoor and outdoor pools (pool availability varies by location), you'll have a standing invitation to the family festivals and pool events happening throughout the summer. You also get the choice of two personal-training sessions ($120–$140 value) with a certified trainer to help jumpstart a stymied fitness routine or improve a preexisting one.
Personal training can even incorporate popular elements such as Zumba, cycling, belly dance, kickboxing, playing catch with computer monitors, and more. If you prefer squeaky-shoe sports, you may also choose two private tennis lessons ($150 value), available at the Bethesda/Chevy Chase location, Silver Spring location, or the YMCA Arlington Tennis and Squash Center.
Since opening its doors in 1998, Language Stars has introduced more than 30,000 children to foreign languages with small-group classes and full-immersion activities. Through a selective process, Language Stars recruits ambitious teachers from more than 20 countries who share a common goal of revolutionizing how and when American children learn foreign languages. Parents and Tots Classes are available for children between 1–3 years old, and Kids Only classes are available for children 3–5, 5–8 and 8–10 years old. Absorbent little minds soak up Spanish, Mandarin, French, German, or Arabic with the help of their FunImmersion approach, learning naturally through games, songs, activities and art projects to help kids finally understand their foreign-exchange imaginary friends.
There's a bustling, kid-friendly metropolis inside each Be With Me Playseum. The centers surround visitors in kid-sized "city shops", which offer areas to decorate cupcakes, play dress-up, or create art projects. Other hands-on activities aim to teach through imagination. A bakery, for example, doubles as a place to learn fractions, while a diner teaches good manners.
Whether it's the grocery or the pint-sized version of Chinatown, one thing ties all of the different areas together: books. The playseum doubles as a children's used bookstore, and staffers place different tomes into the most appropriate area. Books on firefighters will likely be near the fire truck, while reference books on animals will be inside a pet store complete with real frogs, doves, and other animals ready to discuss the hidden themes of Curious George.