Category Archives: Toddlers

Explore Bright Horizons Early Education & Preschool Programs at an Open House

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Are you trying to find the perfect fit for your child’s early education? Attend a Bright Horizons Open House even and find out what sets them apart from the rest.

Several Open House events are taking place this spring at Bright Horizons locations all around the DC-Metro area where you can:

* Meet engaging teachers
* Visit the bright and beautiful classrooms
* Learn about their world-class curriculum
* Discover how children’s interests are incorporated into classroom experiences
* Find out how parent/teacher partnerships contribute to your child’s success

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Visit Bright Horizons online for more information and to find an event near you!

This post is sponsored by Bright Horizons, however, I only promote programs, places, and services that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under Daycare, DC, Educational, Free, Maryland, Preschoolers, Schools, Sponsored Post, Spring, Toddlers, Virginia

My Gym Bethesda & My Gym Potomac: Open House & Giveaway!

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Are you looking for a class to add some active fun in your child’s schedule this spring? My Gym Potomac and My Gym Bethesda are gearing up for a new season of programs for ages 3 months to 10 years. Not only are they hosting an event for families to check them out, the children’s play and fitness centers are also giving away a session — that’s eight weeks of enrollment — to one lucky KFDC reader for their child to enjoy!

You can get a preview of My Gym Potomac and My Gym Bethesda’s offerings for kids at a free Open House on February 24 from 4-7pm. It’s a great opportunity to meet our teachers and sample the programs — there are Mommy and Me movement and music classes for babies and preschoolers, and tumbling, sports, and parkour classes for older children. The evening will include games and activities, plus discounts on registration!

My Gym Bethesda is located at 5110 Ridgefield Road and My Gym Potomac is located at 11325 Seven Locks Road.

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Giveaway: Want a chance to win eight weeks of enrollment for one child in a class at My Gym Potomac or My Gym Bethesda (value of $279)? Simply leave a comment below telling me what activity you’ve enjoyed most this winter so far. Get an extra chance to win by entering on the KidFriendly DC Facebook page, too! The prize includes Lifetime Membership and Unlimited practice and play (free play) during the enrollment period. The winner must start classes by April 31, 2017. Classes are consecutive and pending space available. Contest is open to non-members of My Gym only. This giveaway will run through February 28, 2017, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by My Gym Bethesda and My Gym Potomac, however, I only promote places, programs, and events that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under All ages, Babies, Class, Free, Giveaway, Gradeschoolers, Indoor Play, Maryland, Play, Preschoolers, Sponsored Post, Toddlers, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter

“Explore! With the Portrait Gallery” in this New Activity Space for Children

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As my kids have gotten older, I’ve loved how the options for activities with them around the area have expanded profoundly. They understand more, engage more, do more, and generally enjoy more. Not only is it great for spending quality time with them, it also keeps this blog going. When people suggest that maybe my kids are outgrowing KFDC, I always want to respond (and sometimes actually do) with, “Whaaaat?!” Exploring new places and experiencing different adventures just keeps getting better. The kinds of things we do have changed, but the possibilities and activities themselves are so much greater.

But I digress. Because I do remember those days when Owen and Sasha were really little, when the selection of activities was more limited than it is now, especially for indoor play spaces, and even more so those with free admission.

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This is why the news of “Explore! With the Portrait Gallery” is so exciting. The exhibition opening at the National Portrait Gallery this Saturday, January 28, in partnership with Explore! Children’s Museum of Washington, DC, is the NPG’s first-ever space dedicated to children. Designed for ages 18 months to eight years old, the aim of the bilingual space is to expand kids’ experiences of portraiture by offering them related hands-on activities to answer questions such as “What is a portrait?” “How do I see myself?” and “How do others see me?”

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I got to get a sneak preview of the space and even see it in use as children from the Smithsonian Education Enrichment Center joined the event to “demo” the different play stations. The Explore! room isn’t huge, but the offerings within are pretty neat with several interactive activities that appeal to the intended age range. I saw this firsthand as the kids playing while I was there all seemed to be quite engaged and happy.

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The activities vary, highlighting portraiture in different ways. Visitors can trace each other’s silhouettes, as one person sits on stool in front of a light and another outlines their shadow.

Getting a tutorial in the strike a pose station

Getting a tutorial in the strike a pose station

Testing it out myself

Testing it out myself

Something kids on the older end of the range will like is the station that has them strike a pose for a projected video art piece. You sit in front of a video screen, press a button to snap a photo, then see it on the wall in a grid of many images.

Voila! There I am bottom right

Voila! There I am bottom right

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Little ones can experiment with expression and emotion by building faces out of illustrated blocks. There is also a felt board, where they can create faces and other designs with a variety of colorful stick-on pieces. And a cozy reading nook in the corner is a nice place to explore the books on hand.

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Both Kim Sajet, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, and Rhonda Buckley-Bishop, president and CEO for Explore! Children’s Museum, indicated that they were looking forward to seeing how the space would be received and enjoyed by guests as they launched. That would influence the direction of any new programs associated with the exhibition.

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A couple of painted portraits decorating the walls are a nice touch to maintain the museum feel. Of course, there are galleries full of art to see when you’re done playing in Explore! And a stop in the gorgeous Kogod Courtyard is always a must, too.

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Explore! with the Portrait Gallery” opens at the National Portrait Gallery on January 28, 2017. Hours will be Tuesday – Sunday, 11:30am – 6pm. Admission is free. I recommend checking out the tips and guidelines here before you go.


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Filed under Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Gradeschoolers, Indoor Play, Museums, Preschoolers, Toddlers, Weekdays, Weekend

Meet Your Community Childcare Partner in Herndon Children’s Center!

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Herndon Children’s Center (HCC) is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, and they want to share their dedicated approach to childcare with families in the community! The non-profit, Parent/Board of Directors-run center provides full-day childcare and education for infant, toddlers, twos, preschool, and pre-K children. And after a transition from a federal to private center, along with a name change, HCC is flying a bit under the radar, and they currently have available slots in all programs.

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HCC is NAEYC accredited and offers small class sizes with student-teacher ratios lower than state standards. The broad curriculum is based on learning by discovery, with a focus on art, music, science, dramatic play, language, and physical education. All teachers have a BA degree in early childhood education or a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential. Many teachers and staff are long tenured, 20% of them having being there for 15 years.

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Out of the norm, HCC provides baby food and formula for the infant classrooms. They also offer many engaging enrichment activities, including field trips, on-site shows, splash days, gardening, and activities such as dance (read: the dance teacher visits HCC during the week!). They maintain an ECO-friendly certification and provide healthy homemade-style lunches (with vegetarian options!) as part of tuition.

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This all takes place in a safe, fun, and stimulating environment in which children can socialize, learn, and play. HCC is truly a community in action, where children are appreciated for the individuals they are.

Herndon Children’s Center is located at 530 Huntmar Park Dr in Herndon, VA. More information about their programs is available on their website and Facebook page. You can also call 703.707.3737 or email: info@herndonchildrenscenter.org to learn more and schedule a visit.


This post is sponsored by Herndon Children’s Center, however, I only promote places, programs, and events that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under Babies, Class, Daycare, Educational, Preschoolers, Schools, Sponsored Post, Toddlers, Virginia, Weekdays

Celebrate the Grand Opening of Bright Horizons in Reston!

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Bright Horizons recently opened a new state-of-the-art early education and preschool center in Reston, and they are hosting a Grand Opening party to celebrate the launch! On Saturday, October 1, from 10am – 1pm, community families are invited to enjoy all kinds of family fun and get a first look at the new location.

Festivities will kick off with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10:30am, followed by a pumpkin smash science experiment and leaf sorting activity for children. After that, there will be a musical puppet show by Carousel Puppets, then an interactive performance with Cody & BJ, plus more fun for all!

Plan to get there early — the first 12 families to arrive at the event will receive a complimentary mini photography session with professional photographer, Robert Holley! The session includes the rights to five high resolution digital files. All attendees will have a chance to meet Robert at the event!

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This new opening gives local parents an opportunity to balance their work life and family life, while providing high-quality education for their children. With capacity for 164 children, the center offers Infant, Toddler, Twos, Preschool, and Kindergarten Prep programs as well as drop-in care.

Bright Horizons at Commerce Metro Center is located at 11400 Commerce Park Drive, Suite R140 in Reston, VA. It’s open year-round year-round Monday – Friday, 6:30am to 6:30pm. To learn more about their programs and stay updated on new and events, visit their website and follow them on Facebook.


This post is sponsored by Bright Horizons, however, I only promote events, programs, and places that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under Babies, Daycare, DC, Educational, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Preschoolers, School Event, Schools, Sponsored Post, Toddlers, Virginia, Weekdays, Weekend