My score in the past has been higher. I would just recommend people to the Little Gym of Madison and tell them to find a class their children would love to participate in, all of them are great. Now I feel like I need to have a warning. Every class is great, just make sure you don’t get this one instructor, she is awful. I have been with the Little Gym for over a year, had many different instructors and teaching styles, but this one instructor is so bad my child doesn’t want to return to the Little Gym for a class.
The instructor does not show the different stations. She just verbally tells them what to do. So, when my daughter was standing in the wrong place all she heard was the teacher yelling at her to move. This happened five different times in about seven minutes, My daughter is five and might not understand where to stand to be safe. Instead of yelling at her, show her. My daughter got upset and frustrated at being yelled at. It was frustrating to have the instructor tell another student to do a back roll. When she found out the student didn’t know how she told her to just to a front roll instead. Show the station before hand would have helped in both situations.
The instructor tells them that they are doing a forward roll wrong, they need to protect their neck. Instead of showing them or taking the time to work with the students. Again just yelling instructions. I thought one of the high points of the Little Gym was to welcome kids that are NOT perfect at doing things, be postitive, and help build confidence. My daughter feels like she can’t do anything right.
The instructor also is not able to keep the centers structured. Most class the kids go through the different parts of a station while the instructor is at one point helping students through a certain skill. The kids usually move independently, which can cause some confusion, wait time in line as others finish a certain element, and kids getting out of order. All of the other instructors I’ve had my daughter work with took this is stride and did just fine. However this one instructor could not handle it. So, she decided to keep the kids at the different stations until she told them to move. I am fine with that, but the kids still got out of order and my child missed out on activity until I complained about it. There are only four kids in the class, the instructor was in charge of the rotations and she still could not keep them in order.
I know this instructor was brought in and taught fast because the other instructor left towards the end of June. But, she clearly has some issues and needs to be instructed again. As it stands now, my child does not want to take another class at the Little Gym, so we will not be returning in the fall for class. I still might take her in for the occasional practice time and parent survival night. It saddens me that my child is wanting to leave the Little Gym because she feels like she can’t do anything and gets yelled at all the time. Yes, I make her apologize for her actions in the class, but I feel like this is just because I want to make sure she is showing respect to the instructor. She has never had so much trouble before and I feel like it’s because of poor teaching practices. Who wants to be yelled at all the time? It was a safe place for her to get some great exercise, build confidence, and learn to be more graceful. However, this one instructor has changed that.
The new staff is nice... work on high turnover and training. Deidre and Cristelle always had the attention of the kids and my daughter. She learned so much from the both of them. I know they left on certain circumstances but just wish the new staff had better training and interacted more with the kids. Katie is super nice, just quiet and can barely hear her talk and not much interaction. One of the kids has a hearing aid and can't hear her.
I like businesses and programs that are receptive to feedback! The Little Gym does not disappoint in this regard. On the last survey I provided feedback, The Little Gym promptly responded, and I saw immediate results. I think having strong two-way communication is vital to programs that cater to child development! Well done, Little Gym, you will be my go-to for parties and recreation for years to come!
My child really loves the time spent at class there and I enjoy taking her there and meeting other parents, but sometimes the classes can have more than a few kids and with only one teacher being there it can be a little hassle with keeping some of the kids engaged and trying to get the others that are not engaged or doing their own thing engaged also! I know that your response to this would be possibly hire more, which then turns to class fee going up. For some of the activities that place there, I would of expected a little more.