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.
Like most good ideas, Gymboree Play and Music didn't begin in a business meeting?it began out of necessity. In 1976, Joan Barnes, a California mom, found herself frustrated with the lack of spaces where she could take her kids for safe and age-appropriate play time. Knowing that other parents were undoubtedly feeling the same frustration, she took matters into her own hands and founded Gymboree Play and Music. She consulted experts to design a curriculum of activities to foster the development of children?s cognitive, physical, and social skills through structured play. She hired a nationally renowned playground designer Jay Beckwith to design the proprietary play equipment at her centers. And her staff began conducting entertaining classes covering subjects ranging from music to sports to impart valuable lessons of imagination and physical activity to developing minds. As their children learned and socialized, parents also found benefit in meeting and befriending other moms and dads in their local area. More than 30 years later, her vision has proved to be a success: more than 712 child-centered franchises now spread over 42 countries, bringing confidence and creativity to thousands of youngsters in several continents and to one in the center of the earth.
On select Friday and Saturday nights, Project Playdate opens its doors and arms to young ones for three-hour bouts of evening childcare. Designed to allow parents a night out without having to find a babysitter, the not-for-profit organization hosts drop-off evening-care pajama parties for children aged 2 to 6. In a caregiver-to-child ratio of 1:3, professional nannies lead little ones in activities such as story time, arts and crafts, and dancing, all designed for optimum tuckering out before bedtime. Each event is also punctuated by a dinner of all-natural, whole-food pizza, which accommodates specific food needs and is capped with a feature film.
This summer, Project Playdate is taking its evening care model and adding some sunshine to bring you drop off daytime playdates. These three-hour playdates might visit locations such as the Central Park Zoo, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Tribeca Children?s Museum of the Arts.
All proceeds from Project Playdate events are paid forward to fuel social change and help at-risk young mothers.
It's not surprising that tots become so attached to this modern learn-and-play facility. Here, the dynamic schedule of activities often includes everything from tumbling and ballet to cooking and hands-on science demonstrations. Kids can romp through the jungle gyms, slides, and bouncy surfaces of the center's 1,500 square-foot indoor playground.
Perhaps the most exceptional thing about Citibabes, however, is that it isn't just for kids—while their children are in class (or a supervised childminding session), grown-ups can take advantage of adults-only programs such as parenting seminars and training sessions at the on-site fitness center. In the gym, mommies and daddies get their heart rates pumping on modern cardiovascular machines, reserve personal training sessions, or bench-press strollers filled with dumbbells.
The SoHo club offers a full array of classes, preschool, a tumbling playroom, fitness classes and studio, adult gym, birthday parties, childcare, ongoing family events, workshops, seminars, Junior’s Fresh family friendly café, a juice bar, and more.