Now that the school year is winding down and summer is approaching, everyone is starting to plan summer vacations, summer camps, and even activities for NEXT school year. Here at The Little Gym, it is no different. Enrollment is in full swing for our Summer classes, Summer Camps, and our new Season Enrollment. As our awesome team of teachers hears more and more about everyone's plans for next year, we occasionally get a bit...how should we put it....confused. When asking, "Have you enrolled yet for the Season," we have had some people tell us that their kids are starting school, so, they are done with The Little Gym, for now anyway.
Why as parents do we sometimes think that once we start one activity, another one has to come to a stop? As teachers, we think, "Why oh why would you ever stop coming to class?? Did you see how phenomenal your pre-schooler did today?!? Did you see that he made a new friend, that he was thoughtful of the feelings of others, and that his face lit up when I told him we were going to jump on the Air Track?!?!" Why would you want that to end?
At The Little Gym, we know the best way to teach and encourage is with a smile. We challenge children to strive for success in a positive, nurturing environment. Each new accomplishment (no matter how small) promotes confidence and each successful experience motivates them to try for the next. Our teaching style is non-competitive, which means children are encouraged to strive for their personal best.
At The Little Gym, we get kids moving! Physical activities burn boundless energy, plus build flexibility and strength, develop balance and coordination, and encourage agility, rhythm and overall fitness to launch a lifetime of healthy habits. We boost their brains! We expand the mind and develop a love of learning by fostering listening skills, sustaining concentration and decision making, prepare for or reinforce school lessons, and nurture problem solving and creative expression. We shape and mold citizen kids! We teach LIFE SKILLS like sharing, working in a group, listening and leadership- all skills that translate to a well-adjusted, well-rounded super kid! We even teach kids how to fail. Yes, fail. They learn that it's okay to fall down. As long as they get right back up and try again. They learn how to problem solve. They learn 10 ways to NOT do a skill. But then, that magical moment happens, when they figure out the right way to do it by themselves and, "bam!" and an amazing "Ta-Da moment" for them and a prideful moment for you as a parent. They learn how to share and compromise. They learn that it's okay if they don't get their favorite color bean bag, or noodle, or scarf, or spot marker. They learn how to ask their friends to share, trade, and take turns. They learn compassion. They learn how to celebrate in their friends' victories with thunderous applause, hugs, and high fives.
Major studies note the myriad benefits of early childhood physical development:
-Children with a high level of physical activity tend to remain highly active throughout adolescence. Starting early lays the foundation for a healthy lifestyle.
-Physically active pre-school children perform better in kindergarten and grade school. With age-appropriate exercises and group activities, The Little Gym provides a different context for learning.
-Children with more developed motor coordination have a lower incidence of social and educational problems. By combining physical development with activities that promote sharing, listening and friendship, The Little Gym sets the stage for critical life skills.
-Positive feedback tends to increase children's intrinsic motivation, having long-term benefits on their self-confidence and willingness to embrace challenges. Our positive, noncompetitive environment triggers children's natural drive to discover their own potential.
Sounds like a lot, right? Imagine learning all of that in only 45-60 minutes each week! Sounds great to me! As a parent, I couldn't imagine life for my child without The Little Gym. Can you?
So why stop? Keep the giggles and growth going! Participate in multiple activities. Go to pre-school AND The Little Gym. Will it be hectic at first? Maybe so. But as super parents, you will figure it out. And, your kids will thank you in the end for laying the foundation for a lifetime of success!
Emily Duncan, Gym Director
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