Can you believe school begins again in a few weeks?  Time sure does fly!  We are excited to share that the 2014-2015 Class schedule is available online and open to enrollment! 
 
The 2014-2015 Season schedule offers classes for children 4 months to 12 years old.  Classes range from Parent/Child to Pre-K gymnastics, dance, karate and sports skills to Grade School gymnastics and dance programs! 
 
Daytime, evening and weekend classes are all available to fit your family's busy fall schedules!  But, don't worry -- if you cannot make it to class one week, we have a make up promise that allows you to make up the class you missed in any other age-appropriate program!
 
All classes are beginning to fill at this time, especially the evening and weekend classes.  All classes will begin the week of September 1.
 
Check out the full schedule online or give us a call at (703) 753-9101 with any questions or to save your child's space in the fun!
 
The Little Gym of Gainesville
7364 Atlas Walk Way
Gainesville, VA 20155
(703) 753-9101
Announcement:
Spring Break Camp Week
Next week is Spring Break Camp week!  We're getting so excited to have all of our campers here in the gym!  Spring Break Camp here at The Little Gym of Gainesville will run April 14 - April 18.  Monday-Friday Camps will be held 9 a.m. to Noon and Tuesday and Thursday camps will have a 1 to 4 p.m. with a 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. full-day camp option on Tuesday and Thursday during Spring Break Week.
 
Spring Break Camp Themes
 
The Dragon's Lair Slumber Party!
What child doesn't love wearing their comfy pajamas!?  During morning camp (9 a.m. to Noon) the little ones will be able to wear their P.J.'s to the dragon slumber party!  Campers will go on an adventure in the gym that includes all sorts of games and challenges -- some even include some awesome Hip Hop Dance moves!   
 
Green Beard's Pirate Ship!
During our Tuesday and Thursday afternoon Spring Break camps, kids will enjoy a pirate quest in the gym!  Maybe they'll be walkin' the plank -- the balance beam -- or sailing to a new island to find adventure and fun!  Each day will bring a new adventure, new games and awesomely-fun challenges for your child to complete during Spring Break camp week!
 
Give us a call to learn more about our kids spring break camps or check it out online!
 
The Little Gym of Gainesville
7364 Atlas Walk Way
Gainesville, VA 20155
(703) 753-9101
 

Spring is finally here... at least according to the calendar! A quick look at the upcoming weather forecast does show increasing sunny days and higher temperatures, so it looks like there is a light at the end of the tunnel!

Today, we thought it might be a fun idea to share with you a few ideas regarding fun outdoor activities to experience with your little ones! Below, we will share with you a list of five fun ways to get outdoors and get active with your little one!

1. Get Creative! Make a birdhouse or simply purchase one and make it a game to see the birds use their new home. You could even consider having your little one keep a log or journal about when the birds come to the house and what they do. Using binoculars, you're little one can get an inside peak at the 'secret' lives of little birdies!

2. Go on a hike and collect sticks. Hiking in itself is a blast and a great way to introduce your little one to the outdoors. Even if you're not able to break away into the thick woods of Northern Virginia, simply find a trail or bike path to take a stroll down! While you're on the stroll, pick up sticks and twigs along the way and when you get back from your hike, ask them to use the sticks to write letters or, simply just create fun designs/drawings with the sticks on the ground! It's a great way to get outside and explore nature with the little ones.

4. Here's a really fun and inexpensive idea. "Marble Launch." Take a long swim noodle and cut it in half. Then lay the two halves next to one another and race marbles down the center ring of the noodle! It's a blast and will have your little one outside for hours -- or if the weather turns, you're able to bring the fun inside!

5. Finally, work on their ball-handling skills through a fun game called "Bottle Bash Soccer." Set up empty water bottles and have your toddler kick the ball at the bottles to try to know them over. This is a blast and will start to develop their foot-eye coordination!

Getting kids active is of huge importance as our society offers more and more technology that leaves our little ones leading a more sedentary lifestyle. How do you get your child up and moving? Share it with us on Facebook.

The Little Gym of Gainesville

7364 Atlas Walk Way

Gainesville, VA 20155

(703) 753-9101

In the past we've discussed a few reasons why summer camp is important for your little one's development.  Today, we're going to share with you a more detailed article regarding the psychological benefits of your child enjoying time at Summer Camp.
 
According to an Education.com article, "Benefits of Camp," it was shown that outcomes such as self-identity, respect for others, self-esteem and self-respect were evident. These personal benefits are reflected in the four "C's" of the summer camp community: Compassion, Contribution, Commitment and Character! 
 
According to the article, "For years, campers' parents have reported that when their children return home from camp they are more caring, understand the importance of giving, are more equipped to stand up for what they know is right, and are willing to be more responsible. These are the qualities that will help build a successful nation and a civil society."
 
Camp helps to establish a child's confidence,  by empowering them to make decisions for themselves in a safe and structured environment.  It teaches them how to learn from their good decisions and their poor decisions.  Helping them to sharpen their decision-making capabilities in the future.
 
Camp is a great way to help your child develop into a happy and well-rounded adolescent and adult.  While they're learning values that they'll use for the rest of their lives, they are also having a blast, making new friends and learning new things in a fun and safe environment!
 
The Little Gym of Gainesville
7364 Atlas Walk Way
Gainesville, VA 20155
(703) 753-9101
 
* Camp enrollment is happening NOW!  Join us for camp this summer.  Our camp schedule is flexible and allows you to sign your little one up for one day or even a full week of camp -- whatever fits your family's schedule.

Due to inclement weather, the gym is on a delayed opening schedule, today, March 17, and won't be open until 4 p.m. If your regularly scheduled class is held before 4 p.m. your account will be credited with a make up. If your class is held after 4 p.m., please call the gym if you won't be able to make it to receive your make up class. Please check our Facebook page for more updates regarding delays and openings.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Little-Gym-of-Gainesville/165325408439?ref=hl

Summer class enrollment: If you would like to reserve your space in summer class today, you still can! You can simply call the gym and leave a voice mail requesting to reserve your space and we will both reserve your space and honor today's special deal once the gym opens! (703) 753-9101.

Does your child have a Birthday coming up soon?  Birthday cake is a fantastic way to celebrate your child's big day, but maybe this year, you're looking for a healthier alternative to cake? 
 
Today, we're sharing with you a few awesome healthy cake ideas that we found online!  Have an idea of your own?  Please share it with us on our Facebook page!
 
Fruit Torte Cake!
This healthy and delicious cake is make up primarily fruit and some yogurt too (if you wish to add yogurt.)  When you arrange fresh fruits that are ripe and juicy, a fruit torte will taste as sweet and yummy as a sugar-filled version of cake. If you think your little one would enjoy a sweet topping try including your child’s favorite sugar-free yogurt on top -- YUMMY!
 
Pancake Cake!
If you use a wheat pancake mix or sugar-free mix, this cake option can actually serve as a fun, creative and healthy alternative to an actual cake.  Add some from and (maybe) sugar-free whipped cream and you're all set for birthday fun!
 
Crispie Cake!
Make rice crispie treats using an assortment of the sugar-free versions of cereal!  You can drizzle the crispies with some dark chocolate and even add a few sprinkles if you'd like!
 
Do you have any fun and creative alternatives to birthday cake?  Share with us on Facebook.
 
The Little Gym of Gainesville
7364 Atlas Walk Way
Gainesville, VA 20155
(703) 753-9101

Your child has made some great accomplishments this Season! Let's keep the momentum, skills, smiles, and laughter going as they continue to progress.

As a currently enrolled Member, you will be able to secure your spot for the Summer Session before we open enrollment to the public.

In addition to getting 'first dibs' on classes, we're also offering you our Member Enrollment Specials:

Enroll on Monday, March 17 and receive one FREE spring break camp day (available for children 3-8,) $15 off summer enrollment and TEN raffle tickets.

Enroll between March 18 - 23 and you will receive $15 off summer enrollment AND TEN raffle tickets!

Enroll between March 24 - 30 and you'll receive $10 off summer enrollment and 5 raffle tickets!

What are the raffle tickets for... prizes, awesome, awesome prizes. Starting March 17, you can check out our raffle ticket tables to see what prizes you will win!

The Little Gym of Gainesville

7364 Atlas Walk Way

Gainesville, VA 20155

This week we have kicked off the Learning Unit "Imagination Alphabet" and this week's theme is "'F' is for Friend."

Kids have been exploring the gym, learning about letters, letter sounds and words -- all while having a blast in the gym! We are teaching all these important lessons through movement, music, games and activities in the gym.

Who knew you could learn letters and letter sounds through music and movement -- we did! The kids have been acting out letter shapes with their bodies, performed activities and movements associated with certain letters and they even worked together to create letter 'blends' with their classmates.

Just a reminder, the kid's POP's for this week is to identify sounds within a word. Doing this helps you child learn to "sound out" words when reading. When chatting with your child, randomly challenge your child to guess what word you are suggesting by giving them the sound of the first letter of the word! For example, you might say "Okay, it's getting late, please get ready for "Beh -- "Beh" yes, that's right -- Bed! Then ask your child if they know what letter makes that sound.

The Little Gym of Gainesville

7364 Atlas Walk Way

Gainesville, VA 20155

(703) 751-5700

Convenience foods make packing lunch for children easy -- but, the question on many parents' minds is, is it a healthy meal? Today, we're sharing with you a few ideas for packing a healthy meal for lunch for your little ones!
 
1. A healthy (and fun) twist to spice up Traditional Sandwiches. Here are a few of the recipes we found that looked healthy and tasty too!
 
Traditional Turkey -- try this fun, but still healthy twist! Smoked Turkey Sandwich With Paprika Mayonnaise A touch of paprika gives this sandwich an extra kick. Slices of Manchego cheese are a welcome change from the usual Swiss or cheddar!
 
Traditional Tuna -- try this! Pickled Tuna-Salad Sandwiches Tuna sandwich again? Try this twist on the usual tuna sandwich by adding a spoonful of sweet or dill pickle relish to the mix. This last healthy option looks so delicious!
 
Try this unusual, but tasty looking option: Cheddar and Apple Sandwich Fruit and cheese are a natural pair, so why not put it in a sandwich!? Little ones will love the combination of sweet and salty in this simple yet delicious sandwich.
 
2. Mix it up! Fruit and yogurt? Yes, please! Kids will love this healthy and yummy mix as a tasty treat in their lunch box! A Fruit and yogurt parfait. Try Greek yogurt with sliced fruit, maybe even some slivered almonds, and a drizzle of raw honey -- it'll be sure to make your little one's taste buds happy!
 
3. Finally, a small Tupperware container filled with a yummy dip and carrots (or other veggie) can work great for older children!
 
 
Have any healthy option tips to share? Tell us! Visit our Facebook page -- https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Little-Gym-of-Gainesville/165325408439?ref=hl
 
The Little Gym of Gainesville
7364 Atlas Walk Way
Gainesville, VA 20155
(703) 753-9101

 Over the past several months The Little Gym of Gainesville and Soles4Souls have turned to the people of Gainesville and nearby Northern Virginia communities to help collect shoes for children in need.  The shoes were shipped last week and a whopping 8,250 shoes were collected locally!

The Little Gym of Gainesville franchise owner, Chad Mussmon, his family and local community members, packaged, box-up and loaded the truck with the donated shoes.  Mr. Mussmon then delivered the truck filled with shoes to New Jersey, where Soles4Souls leaders were waiting to collect the shoes and distribute the donated shoes across the world to people in need!

The Little Gym of Gainesville owner, Chad Mussmon was quoted saying, “It’s not only great to see how many people have come out to donate shoes over the past few months, but it’s really awesome to see the children helping package and transport the shoes – they really get an understanding of why donating to others is so important.”

The Little Gym International and Soles4Souls teamed up nationwide.  The total number of shoes collected across the nation was a little over 42,000 pairs of shoes.  The collected shoes will protect children from harsh conditions, disease and enable them to attend school as well.

Thanks to the community members who donated shoes or helped box and ship them to the children in need!

Enjoying some time splashing in the water is a great way to beat the summer heat! The pool and beach offer hours of entertainment for kids of all ages!
 
While you're enjoying the water, be sure to take the appropriate steps to keep your child safe this summer. Every day, two children die from accidental drowning -- which is the second leading cause of death for children ages one to 14.
 
Follow these simple guidelines when your child is near the water:
 
1. Never leave your child unsupervised when he or she is near any water; this includes lakes, pools, bathtubs, hot tubs and even shallow pools of water.
 
2. Empty all buckets immediately after use and store them upside-down and out of reach of your child.
 
3. Teach your child to swim -- get them started with age-appropriate swim classes in your community.
 
4. Never rely on flotation devices alone to keep your child safe in the water.
 
5. Small children should be accompanied by an adult when swimming.
 
6. Teach your child to use the buddy system and instruct them to never go near water alone.
 
7. Adults and kids over the age of 13 should learn infant and child CPR.
Don't forget to have a fun and safe summer!
 
By the way, visit www.thelittlegymgps.com to revieve a special $20 discount on the Amber Alert GPS tracking system.
What has motherhood brought to your life? This article on Time.com breaks down why it’s so great to be a mom. Plus, I thought they provided a wonderfully accurate description of how I generally feel watching my kids grow and develop at The Little Gym.
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