It isn’t easy finding clean, safe and fun spots to bring my kids. However, I was able to try out a class recently at Gymboree in Aliso Viejo, and I was pleasantly surprised. The staff seemed professional and passionate about children, and the program they offer. I found the environment was clean and much safer than other “play areas” I have been to recently.
Believe it or not, I had never taken a Gymboree class with my other two older kids. I always passed by the various locations, but never was exactly sure if my kids would enjoy their program. I’m so glad I went in this time. The class was perfect for my sons age 1 1/2 years old. I felt completely comfortable, even though I didn’t know anyone in the class. My son immediately took to the teacher Mr. Ryan. The music was so great and they did bubbles, parachute and some dancing. The best part for me was that it seemed the toys and equipment were much more stable and safe for younger toddlers and babies. Even more so than “My Gym”. The Gymboree play area was a small area and very padded. I liked that I didn’t need to chase after my son, hoping he wouldn’t hurt himself on the play equitment. I was pleased with the set up and also noticed the range of activities available for both little girls and little boys. My son loved playing with the little cars and balls they had all around the play area, when he didn’t feel like climbing or running around. Every toy seemed to have a “brain development” or motor skill lesson to accompany it. It was all in its place for a reason.
I also liked the group of parents that I found myself mingling with during the class. All seemed very happy to be there with their children. They seemed more of a community or family, than other classes I have taken. We chatted while our children played. I especially liked that their was not too much circle time. When you have a 1-2 year old, forcing them to sit in a circle half the class is not an easy task. Especially, when your child is the third boy (like mine)! He is going…going at all times, and I was not looking forward to being the only mom quietly chasing my kid while all the other children sat quietly in “criss cross applesauce”! Luckily, when we did sit in a circle, the children seemed all very focused on the music and the teacher. My son sat great, and just when he started to get a little squirmy, they were all able to go play on the equipment again, and then the class was over!
I’m so thankful for the Gymboree team helping support mom friendly businesses and hosting our last event at their location. I figured I should probably try one of their classes, since it was just too cute in there not to! Not only did I end up loving the class I tried, but I also liked a lot of the products they sell! They are little more expensive than grabbing the normal bubbles or clown puppet at target, but these toys are really well made and all serve a learning purpose.
I for one will for sure be back to sign up for more classes with my little one.
Special for Morning Mommy Brew readers only for the Aliso Viejo Location only:
If you mention this blog your membership fee will be waived!
*The membership fee is a one-time fee of $50 that will be waived for our readers. The class fees (billed monthly) would still need to be purchased, and begin at $89/month. Open Play (different from the Play & Learn class discussed above) is offered every day and is included for free when you sign up for classes. Non-members can pay $10 to come to Open Play. Play & Learn classes are 45 min long with age groupings of about 6 months, and an instructor leading games and activities and explaining why they are good for your child’s development. Open Play is all ages (0-5yrs) and is unstructured playtime (no teacher leading games and songs).
*I was not paid in anyway for this review.
Gymboree Play & Music, Aliso Viejo
27131 Aliso Creek Rd., #140
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656 United States