Gymboree offers play, music, and art classes - in a brightly colored, tactilely exciting environment - for children ages newborn-five. Classes here emphasize physical and social development (and peer support for parents), sneaked in under the guise of simply having a lot of fun. Prospective students are invited to check out a free trial class; call the location you're interested in to arrange or just drop in. Play classes are divided up into six age-appropriate groups that meet at different times, plus a sibling class. Children and their parents sing, make music, move, explore, and play with props like a parachute and a large ball, in an environment geared toward the age group's interests and abilities. Music classes help kids learn about and explore music through age-appropriate songs and music play, instrument exploration, movement, and emphasis on melody, pitch, and rhythm and other music basics. Art classes engage kids in a wide variety of arts experiences, with a focus on allowing kids to exercise their creativity. Our three-year-old attended a play class at the Ballard location and loved every bit of it, including the music parade, the parachute songs and games, the cooperative carrying game for parents and kids, and the bubbles. The instructor engaged the children without a trace of condescension or over-perkiness, and truly seemed to enjoy what she was doing. The term "play class" is accurate; although classes might contain a tumbling component for certain age groups, they're not primarily focused on gymnastic elements like other local gyms for kids, but rather on getting participants to experience and enjoy movement and bonding with parents and other children.