I have been thinking of enrolling Bunny in Playschool for quite some time now. She has playmates here at home but they don’t see each other that often. Her Ate Hannah attends school and her Ate Hazel can only go out when Ate Hannah is with her.
What pushed me to explore trial classes is the fact that Bunny really needs a place to socialize with other kids but at the same time learn through play. This is why I considered Gymboree.
I’ve read plenty of reviews and two playschools stand out, Gymboree and The Little Gym. I already signed up Alex for a trial at The Little Gym this coming week and Gymboree was last Saturday.
Originally we planned to attend the Play and Learn Class at Sofitel but we ended up doing our trial at Greenbelt. It is more accessible through public transpo and there are a lot of establishments where we can eat first before her class. The PLC class for 16 to 22 month babies was scheduled at 1PM so we first had lunch at Jollibee.
Jollibee really wasn’t our first choice but Bunny started pointing at the Jollibee statue and started blowing kisses his way that we succumbed to her cry for Jollibee.
We finished our lunch early and we just rested for a bit before leaving for her first class. I have to admit that I was super excited and nervous for her first trial class. I wasn’t sure how she would react to a big playground that she has to share with other babies. I wasn’t sure as well if she will listen to her teacher or if she will just run around!
We got there around 12.45 PM which gave us time to sign up and preview the PLC for younger babies. The trial class was worth Php600 and if we sign up within the week it will be deducted to whatever package we will avail of.
Bunny started playing with the ball outside the play area and the staff blew bubbles her way as well to entertain her while we were waiting.
After the PLC 3 class we were allowed to enter the play area. Note here please bring socks for the guardian or parent who will be in the class with the baby or toddler. We were told that we can do our warm ups by playing around the play area and that we will be called when the class starts.
Ah, Bunny started running around and exploring the place. She climbed and then tried the slide over and over again. I had to call her out when she didn’t like to share things and she listened.
After 15 minutes or so Teacher Gem called us and we started our class.
This was our first time so I didn’t really have any expectations only that it might be similar to what Jane (in Jane The Virgin) does with Matteo with the singing and dancing). Tama naman ako, true enough there was a lot of singing and dancing, but there were also obstacles or relays. It really was fun for the moms and the babies.
First bit was the singing and dancing warm up, and then the play part but with solving skills and what I like about it is that they also teach the toddlers to pack up after playing (Bunny listened and helped teacher pack up the toys partly I think it is because I tell her to do so at home).
The last bit was another round of song and dance with tapping, bubbles and lastly with Gymbo the clown.
Bunny liked the tapping and dancing part. She listened closely to teacher when she said tap and freeze and when they were told to clap and stomp.
Bunny wasn’t such a fan of big Gymbo but liked little Gymbo. She even started talking to me and teacher when little Gymbo disappeared! The other babies were cute too because they all had different ways of dealing with the missing little Gymbo.
After the class Bunny wasn’t ready yet to leave so I had to tell her that we will just come back. Teacher Gem gave her a parting gift before we left, a little Gymbo stamp on her arm and told us that goodbye.
Overall I really like the way that the class was structured. Play and Learn is great for little ones and toddlers because they aren’t pushed to do things if they are not comfortable. The tasks are not that hard and they get to partly socialize with other toddlers.
Another plus for me is the attention that the teacher gave to each toddler. She would adjust when she feels like Bunny isn’t comfortable to do a task but play peek-a-boo with her during the singing part.
Lastly the location is great also because it is accessible altough I do hope they have a branch here in Cavite so that it is closer to us.
My final verdict is that it is a good investment for babies and toddlers. Best of course if it will be the parents who will accompany the babies or toddlers and not the help if possible (I really don’t have anything against this but in our class one or two were with their yayas and the attention was split. I noticed that they were checking their phones and I think babies will enjoy it best with mum or dad or a sibling. Simply put it’s a good bonding experience kasi).
If you have spare time do check out their site here and schedule a trial class at the nearest Gymboree school in your area! We might sign up for a month na package first and we will see from there if Bunny likes it a lot.