At Creative Hands Early Learning Child Development Center, kids zoom down the playground slide, experiment with handprint art, and learn new, age-appropriate skills under the staff's watchful eye. With programs for youngsters ranging from infants to 12-year-olds, the center's curricula vary widely, but they all emphasize the idea that learning and play aren't mutually exclusive. The teachers also allow kids to work at their own pace and skill level, cultivating a can-do attitude and a love of learning, rather than a belief that learning should be avoided at all costs.
The caretakers at The Learning Experience emphasize education first, employing a proven set of teaching methods such as Fun with Phonics and their own L.E.A.P. program, designed to meet children at their current level of development. Infants as young as 6 weeks are nestled in their own individual cribs and allowed to roam an exploration-inspiring playzone, and those just a few months older may get the chance to learn sign language. Older kids move at their own pace through more advanced classes that cover early reading skills, basic math concepts, and dance and movement sessions. Besides preparing preschoolers for kindergarten with accelerated literacy and critical thinking, the curriculum includes introductions to modern technology, from digital cameras to DVD players.
Educational explorations take place in an environment designed for safety: brightly colored walls with rounded corners help prevent accidents in the halls, and Child Safe 'N Secure key tags can reveal the location of any student at the push of a button. Outside, kids frolic on playgrounds rooted in a cushy rubberized surface, and indoors is a "Make-Believe Boulevard," where cartoon animals run retail stores and children can get a taste of what it will be like when they're all grown up and can reach the top of the fire station.
It's one of the central rituals of youth: summer camp. No child should be deprived of the joys of canoeing under an open sky, sleeping in a rustic cabin, telling stories around a campfire, and spit-taking at a lonely sasquatch gazing mournfully from the forest. That's why the YMCA runs two camps in eastern Michigan. Just an hour from downtown Detroit sits Camp Ohiyesa, located on the edge of Fish Lake in the middle of lush farmland. And at Camp Nissokone, 170 acres of lakefront campground offers everything from horse riding to wakeboarding to arts and crafts.
At Ladies Fitness, women earn slim physiques and a healthy sweat with personalized workout regimens that can include fitness classes, personal training, and exercise on the center’s equipment. Trained instructors lead more than 30 classes each week, keeping workouts from going stale with fun, diverse sessions such as step aerobics, Zumba, yoga, circuit training, and kickboxing. The gym’s personal trainers push members toward their individual fitness goals, whether it’s to shed pounds, develop muscle mass, or build a machine that will transport them to a time when they were more athletic.
Gymboree offers a bounty of baby-engaging classes in which parents and wee ones work together to build the tot's creativity and encourage development through play. Weekly classes are available for the freshly born sapling to the 5-years-young wise wanderer. This deal includes rhythm-building music classes, imagination-expanding art classes, and Gymboree's most popular class, Play & Learn. The one-month membership allows you to take one class per week with makeups available if you miss a class. This deal also includes unlimited attendance at Gymboree's open-gym sessions (contact location for schedule). The 45-minute classes help to build an everlasting bond that will feel like being tethered to each other with an Ethernet cable. Bond with babies or exercise child-like energy in a public forum.