Classes & Enrichment

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Skiing and Snowboarding with Los Angeles Kids: Ski Trip Day Trips!

On a clear day, as you head east in Los Angeles, you see them beckoning: those glorious snow-capped mountains. If we had bionic vision, we could watch skiers sashaying down the hills—the resorts are that close. And whether you're a seasoned snow veteran or new to skiing or snowboarding—or you'd just prefer that someone else teach your kids to ski—you'll be happy to know that skiing can be easy, close, and occasionally even free.

So if you're ready for winter activities beyond skating and sledding, check out this list of area slopes and snow schools. Plan it right, and you could be on the slope two hours after packing the car—because the mountains are even closer than they look.

The Coder School Expands to a Second Location on LI

You can never have too much of a good thing.

Luckily, Nisha Bhalla and Noreen Kazi, co-owners of The Coder School in Syosset, feel exactly the same way, especially when it comes to providing kids ages 6-18-plus with a cool place to learn about coding. The entrepreneurs recently opened a second Nassau County location, in Roslyn, at 17-21 Lumber Road, Suite 3.

Kids’ Cooking Classes? Taco Bout a Good Time!

Philly parents agree: There are a gazillion reasons to get kids cooking in the kitchen. Besides being a "hidden gem" STEM activity with its math and chemistry components, it hones motor skills, builds self esteem, teaches an important life skill, and makes kids more willing to try new foods (if they cook it, they will be much more likely to try it).

If you're already sold on the benefits of kids cooking and want to give your little chef more structured and professional instruction, then a cooking class can be a great addition to your extracurricular line up. Running anywhere from 45-90 minutes for a regular class and longer for workshops and winter break/summer camps, these classes are sure to impress parents with the skills their young ones learn. 

Keep reading below for some Philly area cooking classes designed with kids in mind.

Children's Museum of the Arts: A Must-Visit Creative Hub for Kids

Slime in the carpet. Glitter on the walls. Paint on a brand new couch. These are just a few of the art-projects-gone-wild I've cleaned up over the years. And though I know the value in all this messy fun and creativity, sometimes I just don't want to deal with stocking the supplies, guiding the activities, and cleaning it all up. Enter the Children's Museum of the Arts. For my money (and sanity!) nothing beats a trip to this creative hub. Dubbed by my arts-loving daughters as their favorite NYC museum, it's an arts education powerhouse that doubles as an indoor playspace, making it a must-visit for NYC guests and tried-and-true boredom buster for city parents.

No Fee When You Join the YMCA Now (And More Reasons to Sign-Up)

When you're a parent, the new year pretty much starts in September. Summer's over, school's back in session, and we're all getting back into our regular routines—or at least trying to, right? If you're one of the many moms and dads still attempting to fill up your kiddo's fall calendar or maybe even make some mid-year resolutions of your own, the YMCA of Greater New York just might be your new best friend.

If you've never stopped by your local YMCA, you may be surprised by just how much you're missing. Lucky for you, all locations are hosting open houses on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 11:00am to 3:00pm, so you can take a look at all of the programs and amenities available at each location. And in addition to waiving their joiner's fee from now until October 8, 2018, we've got plenty more reasons a YMCA membership will be a total family game-changer this fall.

Register for Free Fall/Winter Swim Lessons for NYC Kids

The New York City Parks Department offers FREE swim lessons for children and adults all year round, but you have to apply through an online lottery for each session. The FREE fall/winter swimming lessons are on the horizon, and the lottery for registration opens Monday, October 1, 2018, at noon.

Read on for the details on where to swim for free, or check our directory of paid kids' swim classes, and mommy-and-me swim lessons for babies and toddlers, including those in Brooklyn and in Queens.

Classes for Kids with Special Needs in LA: After School and Weekend Sports Activities

I have a child on the Autism Spectrum, or, as I like to call it, the Anxiety Spectrum. Every quirk and disability on the Spectrum—from OCD to sensory issues to ADD to dyslexia—goes hand in hand with lots of anxiety. So if you're like me, you can't simply throw your little one into any ol' extracurricular activity and assume it will go well. Noise levels, group-think, verbal directions, physical coordination... these can be overwhelming challenges for some children.  

Over the last few crazy years with my family, I've discovered many classes and sports around town for special kiddos. And while I'm no PhD-degreed expert, parent-to-parent I would like to share some ideas with the Mommy Poppins community as we immerse ourselves in another school year.

Free and Cheap After-School Programs for NYC Kids and Teens

Back-to-school season is also back-to-after-school season, as families look for enriching and fun programs for their children. There are tons of sports, arts, academics, and other kinds of classes for New York City kids, many of them reasonably priced. In fact, a handful of high-quality after-school programs are actually free or super inexpensive!

Some places, like the New York City Parks Department, offer after-school coverage Monday through Friday. Other programs only meet once or twice a week. We've rounded up 15 organizations that offer complimentary or reasonably-priced classes to kids and teens throughout the five boroughs.

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