When my older son reached the 5/6 month mark I started looking into classes and activities nearby where we live, that would benefit his development. One of my girlfriend’s suggest a “gym” class, as she had taken her daughter to one and they really enjoyed it. We had a few different options in my area, from mommy & me classes, to music and then I came upon Gymboree! Now Gymboree Play & Music does offer several different options, but I opted for the “gym” part. I really wanted something that was going to give my baby physical activity. We had already been attending baby story time events at our local library, where there was lots of music and reading…but I needed something to help tire him out a little more!
For me, I think we started going to Gymboree classes at the perfect time in his development, as he was just starting to sit on his own, but still immobile – unless you count his wiggly rolling around movements! The class structure was perfect, they had songs, guided us through physical exercises and movements, then a parachute, bubble and a”Gymbo” puppet followed by more songs. It was a great way for me to interact with my son, while also allowing him to explore, socialize and develop with other children about the same age as him! Of course the facility is totally child-friendly, safe and clean too…he loved just sitting and laying on the play mats. I could tell from the first how much he enjoyed it and from the way he passed out once we got in the car and for the rest of the afternoon that day, I really enjoyed it too! 😉
Gymboree offers the first class as a free trial, and then after paying a small membership fee and getting a promo discount for the monthly class charge, I didn’t hesitate to sign up. In the next few months that we went to our weekly class, he began sitting on his own, then crawling and eventually trying to stand. Now I’m sure he would’ve been learning all of those things on his own at home too, but I really liked having a guided class every week where he could work on the different skills. After 3 or 4 months we stopped attending, as I was pregnant with baby #2 and my belly was getting a little too big and uncomfortable to be in class with him, but I certainly plan on signing the second one up for Gymboree too, starting in a couple months.
A few of the other pluses for me were interacting with the other parent’s who had kids that were the same age as mine, my Gymboree location was very good about disinfecting and sanitizing the play balls and equipment, plus baby gets such a good “workout”..leading to a nice long nap…BONUS! Also, if you miss a class, makeups are easy and they also offer “open gym” times when you could bring your child in to play outside of class times.