Wondering how to tire your kids out enough so that they give you the Holy Grail of every mom’s day: a nice, long nap? We suggest enrolling your children in some toddler classes. From music to dance, there are a number to choose from in this area.
The Rundown: Best Toddler Classes
Music & Art
- Encourage the Picasso or Mozart in your child!
- Music Together: The national music program with the amazing reputation is a hit with kids from babies to preschoolers. While a bit pricey, your child(ren) will learn about music in a fun and comfortable environment. Classes are held in Portsmouth and Kittery.
- PMAC: Portsmouth Music and Arts Center offers art classes for ages 3 to 5, where children work with a variety of mediums to create fantastic art.
- There are a few places your child can learn to swim, but they are all in Portsmouth. Learning to swim will not only tire your kid out, but will give him or her confidence and keep them safe around the water.
- Gymnastic classes are a great way for kids to play wildly in a safe environment. They can bounce off the walls in the comfort of NOT your own home.
- Rumble Tumble Gym: Located in Portsmouth, Rumble Tumble offers gym classes for a variety of ages, including a drop-off for slightly older children. Sign-up for a class and get free play for your child during the duration of the class.
- Atlantic Gymnastics: With locations in Portsmouth and Dover, this gym offers open enrollment throughout the year. Perfect if you aren’t great with deadlines and cut-off dates.
- New Hampshire Academy of Artistic Gymnastics: This school of gymnastics in North Hampton offers various classes for preschoolers and even offers free play for siblings.
- Action Kids at Brentwood Commons: This year-round facility offers recreational and competitive gymnastics, tumbling classes, preschool programs, swim lessons, open gyms, summer camp, birthday parties, and much more.
Does your little one love to dance? Sign them up for a class!
- LA Beatz: This is not your traditional ballet studio. Toddler classes, also known as “Little Funky Beatz,” introduces your child to music and rhythm.
- Portsmouth School of Ballet: If your daughter is as obsessed with tutus as mine is, this Seacoast ballet school could be a winner.
- Great Bay Academy of Dance: This is the dance school out of Kittery responsible for producing The Nutcracker in the Seacoast every year. They have Mommy & Me classes, as well as classes for preschoolers.
- The Musical Arts Academy of Music & Dance offers an array of dance classes for little ones in Exeter.
- Adagio Dance Academy is also based in Exeter. Its toddler classes include tap and ballet— one of the only tap offerings around for little ones.
- Dance Innovations begins their toddler classes at age 3 in Greenland and puts on one heck of a recital every June.
Move and pose WITH your child!
- Childlight Yoga: Located in Dover, Childlight is the premier spot for child yogis and their parents.
- Yoga East: Offering one of the only parent and child classes, Yoga East provides a fun and safe atmosphere for you and your child to explore the foundations of yoga.
Miscellaneous & Drop-Ins
- Children’s Museum of NH: Every Wednesday morning, the Wee Ones program meets for stories and activities. Discounted pricing for museum members and you can pay by class.
- Seacoast United: Children up to five-years-old can enjoy this open gym in Hampton. Kids can run around, kick soccer balls, and go crazy at PLAY TIME.
- Seacoast Science Center: Every Monday morning, bring your children for exploration and fun. Children under three stay with their caregivers, while the ages three-to-five crowd goes outside (weather permitting) to explore.
- Seacoast Waldorf School: Take this class, entitled “Lighthouse”, with your child, ages 1-3, to receive an introduction to the principles of a Waldorf education. Share songs, play games and enjoy the presence of other parents and children.
- Wiggles and Wisdom: This intergenerational activity class is one-hour long on Tuesdays. Taking place at Harmony Homes by the Bay Assisted Living/ Memory Care facility, children under 5 come to play, do crafts, sing and so much more– all while making new, senior friends. Undoubtedly, this unique class in Durham is bound to make an impact in many lives.
Free & Cheap
- Families First is an incredible resource for Seacoast Moms. From weekly playgroups to parenting classes, none of their programs cost much (if anything) and are top notch.
- Hike It, Baby Portsmouth: This online group meets up for weekly hikes around the Seacoast area.
- Local libraries: Do not under-estimate story time at your local library. Portsmouth’s story time is lovely and there are two options, depending on the age of your kiddos. Rollinsford public library also has amazing options.
- Airzone Exeter Once or twice weekly, your under six-year-old can bounce for just $5. Look for WhippersnapAir on the calendar!
- NHSPCA Storytime: Every Thursday morning, experience story time with the animals of the SPCA in Stratham. Donation of $5 suggested.
- Kindergym with York ME Parks and Rec: Every Monday morning from 9:30-10:15 drop-in for $5 at the Our School Nursery School in York. Register on the Parks and Rec site, search “Kindergym.”
- Playgroup at Seacoast Waldorf School: Most Fridays from 9:30-11am, Seacoast Waldorf School in Eliot opens its classroom to kids under three. Visit their web site and sign-up for the newsletter for more information.