For more than 20 years, the FAA-certified flight instructors at Washington International Flight Academy have safely guided pupils skyward and imbued them with the skills necessary for numerous licenses and certifications. Under an instructor's watchful eye, guests control a Cessna 172 on a 30-minute airborne trek during discovery flights, which can later be applied toward courses for a private or commercial pilot’s license with optional multiengine rating. A commercial pilot’s license qualifies more seasoned flyers for instructor certification, where they learn how to teach essentials, including how to tell the difference between a landing airplane and a diving roc.
Along with in-depth courses, Washington International Flight Academy accommodates patrons with rentals of its massive fleet, charts and piloting supplies from its fully stocked shop, and lodging for out-of-state students.
Atlantic Edge Dive Center's dive-masters might technically be classified as land mammals, but they spend enough time under water to earn the honorary title of amphibian. They spend days and nights teaching and leading dives, whether they're arming curious beginners with basic skills in one of their on-site swimming pools, or conducting open water certification tests off the coast. They go beyond simply certifying students for adventure: they provide rescue diving, dive master, and instructor training as well.
Their passion for the aquatic pastime draws them to all kinds of watery outposts. They lead excursions to the Florida keys to help rehabilitate the coral reefs surrounding the islands, and dive into the relatively calm waters of the tanks in the Baltimore National Aquarium, where they have a chance to see 53 species of fish feed in the secret underwater cafeteria.
Since its founding in a small Gaithersburg, MD warehouse, Amazing Art Studio has taught others the basics of visual art and empowered them to explore various art forms on their own. The studio hosts open sessions that allow burgeoning artists to freely explore different creative and hands-on mediums. During pottery painting sessions, participant can explore techniques for decorating bisque with glaze, while painting classes transform blank canvases into still-lifes and landscapes. Glass-fusing and mosaic sessions, meanwhile, let students freely combine pieces of colored glass into wild geometric and organic designs. The studio also organizes camps and programs for children, and after-hours adult workshops that encourage pairing art with beverages. Throughout the day, books and pictures are always on-hand to jump-start creative thinking.
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.
Since 1995, Best in Class Education Center's instructors have aided students of all ages—from pre-K tots to high school seniors—in their academic journeys. They calibrate small-group and private math and English lessons that push each student at an individualized pace, helping struggling students catch up to speed or edifying advanced pupils seeking more of a challenge. The tutors give homework assignments for the kids to work on throughout the week, as well as administer weekly tests to assess their progress.
In addition to boosting success in current classes, the staff helps older students ready themselves for post-secondary schooling with SAT prep classes and college admission workshops, which help applicants decide on the right place, craft an impressive personal statement, and shimmy into their dream school's mascot costume before campus visits.
The instructors at US Martial Arts and Fitness combine traditional martial arts with exercises designed to burn calories and build muscle. The resulting workouts teach students the principles of self-defense while making them strong enough to deadlift their terrified attackers. Young martial artists begin their training in kids' karate classes that instill discipline and self-confidence, while adult students participate in MMA classes that delve into the grappling techniques of kickboxing and jiu-jitsu. Some classes, such as Xtreme Kickboxing Fitness, use martial arts as a jumping-off point for workouts that focus more heavily on fitness.