Franchisee Spotlight: Jersey City, NJ

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 & Music franchisee and what I’m doing for my community”.

Growing Young Minds

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.

The Importance of Social-Emotional Learning

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.

Give your child space to create

Babbling becomes singing, scribbling becomes drawing, the “toddler bounce” becomes dance…

All pop stars, artists and dancers started the same way: as little ones who were given the space and opportunity to explore their creative side.

We believe the process is so much more important than the product. Purple cats with three eyes, silly songs with made up words, and freestyle dance moves are all welcome here!

Visit a Gymboree Play & Music location today to discover a safe space for your little one to explore their creative side.

We Make Learning Fun

How about letting your little one be exactly what they are: LITTLE!

At Gymboree Play & Music, our programs grow with your child from birth to kindergarten – transitioning from adult/child classes for the younger ones to independent learning for the “big kids”- supporting physical, cognitive and social/emotional learning, including early literacy and math skills.

With plenty of opportunity to burn off some kid energy, sing, giggle and swim in a sea of bubbles, our classes are so fun they won’t even know they are learning.

Take a Break From Responsibility

Busy, busy, busy….we are all JUST.TOO.BUSY!!

At Gymboree Play & Music, we not only give you the opportunity to put your responsibilities on “mute” and enter your child’s world of play, we encourage it! Dare we even suggest that you turn your phone off? 😘

Young children learn best while challenged and engaged in creative play, supported by the grown-ups who love them.

That’s one of the many reasons generations of families have considered our programs an integral part of their child’s early learning adventure for over 45 years.

Connect with friends – new and old – and embrace the joy and wonder of playing, laughing, and learning with your little one.

Franchisee Spotlight: Carmel, IN

Like many of our franchisees, Wendy Shultz came to Gymboree Play & Music through her child. She and her husband, Mike, had transferred to the Indianapolis area for Mike’s job. Their two older sons were in school all day, and Wendy was home with a one-year old, desperate to meet other moms. 

She discovered a Gymboree Play & Music class in the basement of a church, and was hooked. The owner approached Wendy to train as a teacher and she fell in love with the creativity that our programs allowed her to bring to her classes, the joy she saw on faces – adult and child – and the relationships that grew, week-over-week. 

Twenty-eight years later, the Carmel location and “Miss Wendy” are still going strong. Ever humble, Wendy states “we are blessed to have a great team to make all the magic happen”. She goes on to say “I really love it when past clients visit with their (now older) child to see us and let us know what positive memories they have about the experience we provided. Many past Gymboree kids now bring their little ones to class”. 

Wendy and Mike are very active in their community, running food drives and supporting the Indiana Diaper Bank at their location. Their special events are epic, and Wendy is always willing to share ideas and the insights she’s gained over more than two decades with other Gymboree Play & Music franchisees. 

The days can be long, but the early childhood years are short. Gymboree Play & Music can help fill those days, while you make memories to last a lifetime!

Celebrate the Season With Friends and Family

It’s the most wonderful time of the year

Holiday parties, festive lights, celebrations with friends and family all add to the joy and fun. 

Having a little one (or two or three!) in the family, and experiencing the wonder of the season through their eyes, makes it even more special.

Our Gymboree Play & Music locations are also celebrating the season, and embracing the community of families that visit our centers week-after-week for fun and learning.

Get your merry on at a location near you!

Give the Gift of Play and Learning This Holiday Season

The holiday season has officially begun! And, as much as we’d all love to focus on celebrating with friends and family, and the joy of the season, we are inundated with ads for STUFF.

Families with little ones only need so many big plastic toys. They are exciting at first, but are quickly cast aside and in the way.

A Gymboree Play & Music membership keeps families (both children and adults) happy and engaged for much longer than any shiny new toy. For over 45 years, we have been supporting the physical, cognitive and social development of young children – birth to five – and building connections and community: child-to-child, adult-to-adult, family-to-family.

Give the gift of play and learning to a special little one in your life. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to enjoy the gift too!

Find a location near the special little one in your life.