Baby Classes

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I completely spaced out with everything that is occupying my head right now and forgot to write about how our first baby classes went/are going.

Let’s start with our swim classes. Like most of you pointed out on facebook to calm my fears of having to dunk Alexis, first swim classes are introduction to water. That means: getting comfortable in the water, learning to reach the ledge, singing songs and just in general having fun. Sounded great to me!

We arrived to our first class ( that was back in September I think) and were the third mom/baby pair at the class, the other two with a 1 year old and a 2 year old. What I didn’t realize was how basic the class would be. It makes sense now: introduction to water!

{Pictures above: 1. looking around, 2. Excited to be in the water, 3. Floating on her belly, 4. Disoriented after a quick dunk (I actually did it because she was so comfortable with it), 5. Her favorite: tasting the water (yuck!)}

Alexis, however, needed no introduction if you didn’t notice from the previous pool pictures I’ve posted. She LOVES water, she makes swim motions while being held horizontal, she reaches for the ledge automatically. When it was time to flip babies onto their back, the instructor warned us that they hate this position. While the other two kiddo shrieked, Lexi calmly lay back on my shoulder floating in the water, while gripping my hands tightly. She isn’t super comfortable on her back in general (hence the tight grip), but she doesn’t fight it too much. That day, though, it was nap time and she was happy to lay back and close her eyes. HAHA!

The class was fun and very very short. We would probably even stay in it for the fun of it, if it wasn’t during Lexi’s nap. It just didn’t make sense to drive 30 minutes there for a 30 minute pool session and 30 minutes back with a cranky baby who really needed to be napping at that time. So we pulled out of the class and instead decided to go to our community pool twice weekly to do the same thing AND sign up for a 2nd music class, which we both LOVED!

Music class is something I would recommend to every single person with a baby. Ours is called Kindermusic and it starts from classes for newborns and up, and goes onto toddlerhood and then technical music training at the age of 4.

Our class was based around moving vehicles, so all the songs and games had an element of movement. There are about 10 people in each class (we signed up for 2) with babies aged 4 months to 18 months. The whole class is based around singing and music with a lot of movement and games as well as sounds set to music. You also get a CD of the music heard in class so that you could listen to it at home and in the car. There’s rocking, bouncing, jumping, running, dragging, playing… I don’t have any good pictures from the class, because obviously we were busy playing and singing, but there are a few cell phone shots I did get to take. There is also a lot of interaction between babies, which is why I signed up for a second one.

{In the photo: using a laundry basket as a vehicle. This is something you can do at home. Attach a belt to a laundry basket and wheel your little one around}

Alexis loves her music class. The first several weeks she 2qw pretty reserved, just looking around with her cute fish-face, not smiling at anything or anyone. After a few classes she warmed up and let her guard down a bit and the last few classes she was busy crawling around, trying to walk, grabbing toys and books, and doing all kinds of cute stuff. My husband went with us a few times to see her in class and I was actually surprised to see a decent amount of dads there. There’s always 1-2 dads at each class, with the largest number being 5 including my husband. Some people even bring grandmas! I think that’s pretty cool!

{In the photo above from left to right: 1. Lexi crawled far away from me and sat between two random people, 2 and 3. playing with toys and “stealing” other kids’ toys, 4. When it was time to get up and walk, she speed crawled away to the center of the circle and sat there clapping to music}

I was told about the class by my friend who couldn’t stop raving about it and I am just as impressed. So much that I am trying to get every single baby mama I know to sign up!

{In the photo above: 1. playing with hair curlers for texture time, 2. refusing to get into the bilibo seat and instead lying down and kicking her leg to the beat of the music, 3. This one kills me! She crawled up to this girl and sat behind her like that. Talk about no concept of personal space! Hahahaha}

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  • Reply
    December 7, 2012 at 11:47 AM

    I love all the pictures – Lexi is just adorable! I’m glad you finally signed her up for some classes. My parents have their own pool and are local, so we haven’t bother with swim lessons, but we started taking our daughter to infant storytime at 4 months, and I regret not starting her sooner! She now goes to 2 different storytime classes, one music class and one dance/movement class each week. It’s a fantastic way to socialize babies that aren’t in daycare – we can now always tell when a new baby/toddler shows up that hasn’t been well socialized, they just don’t know how to interact with the other kids, which makes me a little sad!

    Between the classes and tons of playdates, at eleven months our DD now knows how to “share” toys (well, sort of the time, lol!), loves to “play” with the other babies (mainly by patting their arms or shoulders gently, or waving very enthusiastically at them, ha) and can easily follow directions during the classes, especially dance – it’s so cute to see our little girl “marching” and swaying and swinging her arms and waving and clapping right along with the dance teacher – it’s awesome! She started dancing to music around 8 months and could follow different types of “dance” by 10 months, and I totally credit her music and dance classes for that!

    And Dads/Grandparents in classes are the total norm all over the place – most moms work, and there are a stay-at-home dads, grandparents, sitters and nannies in classes!

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      December 7, 2012 at 12:41 PM

      We’ve been doing these classes since she was 7 months old, and love them so much! What kind of dance/movement classes do you go to? I’d love to do that too.
      We have a lot more activities planned once she starts walking. There are baby gyms around here, and toddler storytime ( the only infant storytime is too far to bother), and I am dying to sign her up for ballet, tennis and karate in the future (i know weird combination!)… And then kind of weed out things she doesn’t like, and keep things she enjoys.

      • Reply
        December 7, 2012 at 12:55 PM

        We have a very cool coffee shop/play space within walking distance of our house (it has multiple play areas aimed at different age groups from infants through elementary aged kids) and they offer a lot of classes that we attend (very cheap, $3 a class!), the rest we take are free through our local library (a GREAT resource if you have young kids!). The dance/movement class is at the coffee shop and it’s taught by one of the dancers from our city’s renown ballet company, and it’s just amazing – our DD now loves and recognizes a lot of well known classical music because of that class.

        You can definitely do baby gyms before Lexi starts walking! There’s no reason to wait! We started going to our local Children’s Museum when our girl was just crawling (around 6 months) and she loved it – loved watching the “big kids,” checking out all the awesome toys and exhibits, and there’s a special area for crawlers. And now that she’s walking she can spend hours there having fun (and it’s a great space to go when the weather’s either too hot or too cold for parks and playgrounds). My husband’s a stay-at-home dad and his rule is to get out of the house at least once a day (usually twice a day) both for our DD’s development and entertainment, and for his own sanity! 🙂

        • Reply
          Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
          December 7, 2012 at 4:17 PM

          Oh you’re so lucky. There are dance classes for toddlers here but not babies.
          It also sucks that we live good 20-30 min from most classes, so it’s a lot more difficult to get out daily while she still needs 2 naps and won’t easily nap in the car.
          But wherever it’s all temporary. She’s growing so fast.

      • Reply
        December 7, 2012 at 1:34 PM

        Love that idea! Start honing the things she naturally enjoys and is good at from an early age. Hmm, I need to start thinking about classes. 🙂

        • Reply
          Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
          December 7, 2012 at 4:18 PM

          Yes! We’ve long since decided that we will enroll her into anything available and then let her “decide” what she is interested in.

  • Reply
    December 7, 2012 at 1:06 PM

    ive been wanted to sign up for kindermusic classes for a while now. unfortunately there are none in my area that fits my schedule since I work 9-5 M-F 🙁
    and our friends got us a gift certiicate to start swim lessons, were so excited!

  • Reply
    December 7, 2012 at 2:33 PM

    We’re almost done with our swim lessons. We are doing the same basic idea and we get to take both kids. Avery loves it, Garrett not so much. I think we waited too long for him. He doesn’t like to try any of the things the teacher suggest and hates being on his back. Ha! We have baby #3 coming in July so probably won’t be doing anymore classes for awhile but I’d like to get him in a preschool class soon.

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      December 7, 2012 at 5:07 PM

      OM congratulations, you crazy mama! Three babies in a row! That’s awesome!!!

      • Reply
        December 8, 2012 at 7:31 AM

        Ha! Crazy might be the right word for it! ; ) We’re excited though!

  • Reply
    Emily H.
    December 7, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    You should totally post your excitement for Kindermusik here:

    Thanks to your post, I’m adding it to classes I’d like to try. Thanks!

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