Parenting a young child can be full of amazing and magical moments.
But, unless you are lucky enough to have a group of friends or close family who are in the same point in their parenting journey and lives, it can also feel isolating and lonely.
For over 45 years, we’ve been creating a fun, welcoming space where parents can gather not only to support their child’s physical, cognitive and social-emotional development, but where they can connect and build friendships that can last a lifetime.
If you’re lucky enough to already have friends at the same place in their life, bring them along! We can all use more members in our “tribe”.
“Music is life. That’s why our hearts have beats.”
From the youngest age, children are inspired by music. A baby will turn their head in the direction of the sound. Young toddlers will wiggle, bounce and shimmy along to the beat. And preschoolers will move with defined purpose, even following simple choreography!
Music supports sensory development: exposing your child to different types of music can help create more pathways between the cells in their brains.
Music can improve literacy and numeracy: from an early age, babies can hear the difference between different types of sounds. Exposure to music enhances a child’s natural ability to decode sounds and words, and helps them anticipate what is coming next in a song and how to put these sounds in a sequence.
Music helps build coordination: music encourages your child to move, developing their fine and gross motor skills.
Music helps develop vocabulary: even if your child doesn’t understand the words to a song at first, they develop their understanding by identifying the storytelling within it.
Music supports social-emotional development: nothing sparks more joy that a group of little ones all moving to the beat together!
That’s why music is an important part of all of our classes. Find a location near you.
Erica Lincoln was a stay-at-home mom, taking her young daughter to classes at Gymboree Play & Music, when she decided to start teaching art classes there on Saturdays.
Eight years later, when she was considering leaving Gymboree to open her own business in the restaurant industry, she was approached by the owner about purchasing the location instead. She immediately said “yes”!
“I think we have the best jobs ever! I could probably write a book with the silly comments and stories our School Skills kids tell me. I also love teaching the babies classes. Watching them grow from infants to toddlers to preschoolers is the most rewarding experience I can think of.”
Children of every culture use play to communicate, create and express their thoughts and feelings.
Entering your child’s world and “speaking their language” is what makes learning-through-play so powerful.
Play-based learning has been the foundation of Gymboree Play & Music‘s programs for over 45 years, supporting the physical, cognitive and social-emotional development of children from birth to kindergarten. Children are given the physical and emotional space to explore and learn at their own pace, with a variety of programs that grow with your child.
There comes a time in every little one’s life when they have to transition from having their grownup by their side to facing the world on their own. Some move on with a smile on their face, never looking back. Others have a hard time, with lots of tears. Meanwhile, the grownup is dealing with all of the emotion around their “baby” no longer being one.
We understand how difficult that transition can sometimes be. That’s why our programs grow with your child – from adult/child for our younger ones, to classes that include a parent-separation time, to our fully-independent School Skills preschool program – supporting their development from birth to kindergarten.
Our programs help foster the self-reliance your little one needs to brave their new world of independent learning with minimal tears and lots of smiles.
Pooja Gupta was working in a high-stress job in Manhattan, when the market crash of 2008 gave her a chance to re-evaluate her career. She started taking her niece to her classes at Gymboree Play & Music, and realized that this was a business that she could feel passionate about.
She recognized that there was a huge need for quality programs for young children in her area, and started researching possible locations. She debated the pros and cons between various types of real estate options, and decided to start out in an older building in a third floor space. It allowed her to learn and make mistakes because she had kept her overhead relatively low. She gambled that the quality of her programming would offset any inconvenience for the families, and she was right – her business thrived.
After a decade of success, she started wondering if she should shut down her profitable space and move to a “better” location with higher rent. Another national crisis – the pandemic shutdown – forced her hand and gave her the opportunity to find a new space.
If you’ve noticed a few gambling terms sprinkled in here, it’s because Pooja is an amateur poker player, even playing in two national tournaments in Las Vegas! She’s also on the professional board for a non-profit that supports families dealing with homelessness.
Pooja loves teaching and “developing little humans”. She says that teaching helps her keep the spark, saying “It reminds me why I’m a Gymboree Play & Musicfranchisee and what I’m doing for my community”.
As a parent, you know what your child’s body needs to grow up strong and healthy: nutritious food (when they’ll eat it), plenty of rest (when they don’t fight it), and fresh air and sunshine (weather permitting).
But your little one’s brain also needs nourishment. While they are young, they need to be exposed to a variety of experiences, and allowed to experiment, investigate, make mistakes and try again. Play-based learning, music and art all support your child’s cognitive development, with their physical and social-emotional development as an added bonus!
It’s why we do what we do. Gymboree Play & Music has been supporting the development of young children for over 45 years, with a variety of engaging programs that grow with your child from birth to kindergarten.
Imagine that for at least half of your life, you rarely – if ever – left your house. And you only saw your closest family members.
Then imagine that you were suddenly out and about in the world, processing new experiences and interacting with lots of new people. Would you know how to act?
That’s exactly what our little ones have been facing. Many of them have missed out on the everyday interactions that help develop the social skills needed for effective problem-solving, self-discipline, impulse control and emotion management.
Social-emotional learning is as important (if not more so for little ones) as academic learning. People with strong social-emotional skills are better able to cope with everyday challenges. They develop self-awareness, self-control and the interpersonal skills that are vital for school, work and life success.
That’s one of the many reasons why Gymboree Play.& Music has been supporting the development of young children – physical, cognitive AND social-emotional for over 45 years.