The ring of the bell doesn't have to signify the end of the day — it's also the start of an after-school identity your child can hone through practice, practice, practice. From dancer to fitness buff to Hollywood-star-in-training, tykes to teens can take on any role they want, with plenty of support and training from the area's experts. Here, we guide you through the options. Whip out a highlighter and enjoy the task of scheduling these fun hobbies together!
Field Trip Guide
Make the weekends fun and educational!
Michigan Theater – Not Just For Kids Live Theater 603 E. Liberty St. 734-668-8397 x27 www.michtheater.org/njfk
The Michigan Theater is proud to present amazing live family-friendly shows! They join forces again with the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra in offering wholesome live performances perfect for the entire family. Bring your children and grandchildren to the Michigan Theater for the best in theater and music in the Not Just For Kids series and give them the gift of a lifetime of wonderful memories! The 2012-13 season includes Bunnicula, Harry the Dirty Dog, Mysteries of Ancient Egypt, Martha Speaks and Seussical. The Premium Series includes two additional family-oriented concerts by the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra. For more information, visit www.michtheater.org/njfk or call 734-668-8397 x27.
Circle Pines Center 8650 Mullen Rd., Delton 269-623-5555 www.circlepinescenter.org
Circle Pines Center has a storied history, beautiful scenery and serene environment — it's the perfect weekend field trip away from the busy rigors of the school year. Their many programs, from adult camps to yoga retreats to Spanish immersion retreats, are all unique in their educational focus. At Circle Pines "folk dancing" is as common on the list of activities as "campfires" — a delightfully cultural kind of camping. Visit their website for information on how to sign up.
Toledo Zoo 2 Hippo Way (off the Anthony Wayne Trail) 419-385-5721 www.toledozoo.org
Fun doesn’t end when school starts! The Toledo Zoo offers dynamic, engaging activities for families and educators all year long. Rated one of the nation’s top 10 zoos, it has more than 8,000 learning opportunities waiting to meet eager students. Learn more at toledozoo.org
Calder Dairy and Farm 9334 Finzel Rd. Carleton, MI 734-654-2622 www.calderdairy.com
Learn about life on a diary farm. Watch as the “girls” are milked at 4pm every day. At 3pm, depending on the season, help the staff feed the baby calves. Students can also help feed the ducks, goats and sheep with Calder Dairy’s hands-on, educational approach!
Chelsea Teddy Bear Factory 400 N. Main St. 734-433-5499 www.chelseateddybear.com
Embrace your inner teddy bear at the Chelsea Teddy Bear Factory. Groups can learn how teddy bears are made with a behind the scenes factory tour and investigate toys from the past in The Factory’s Toy Museum.
Community Farm 1525 S. Fletcher Rd. Chelsea 734-433-0261 www.communityfarmofaa.org
Embrace Ann Arbor’s oldest CSA! Now in its 23rd year, the Community Farm offers hands-on lessons ranging from weeding and planting to learning about the Farm’s solar-powered tractor.
Jiffy Mix 201 W. North St. Chelsea 734-475-1361 www.jiffymix.com
Right across the street from The Chelsea Teddy Bear Factory find The Chelsea Milling Company! Family owned and operated since 1930, the Milling Company produces “JIFFY” prepared baking mix products. Groups and children ages six and up can tour the Chelsea facility Monday through Friday from 9am-1:30pm. Watch a slideshow, have a snack and walk through the packaging plant!
Tantré Farm 2510 Hayes Road 734-475-4323 www.tantrefarm.com
Tantré Farm has been a certified organic farm since 1993 and grows over 50 varieties of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers. Chickens, LaMancha goats and Guernsey cows also call the farm home. The family-owned and operated organic farm offers a plethora of learning experiences for students, from caring for barnyard animals to harvesting crops. Participating in the Edible Farm Tour is sure to keep students a buzz as they sample herbs, flowers and vegetables.
The Creature Conservancy 4950 Ann Arbor-Saline Rd. 734-929-9324 www.thecreatureconservancy.org
Do as the creatures do. The Creature Conservancy brings animals to classrooms and hosts groups on-site with animals who can’t make the trip. Whether it’s a parma wallaby, crested porcupine, python or parrot, there’s something for everyone with The Conservancy’s specialized field trip programs including African Safari, Scales and Tails, Rainforest and Around the World in 80 minutes.
After School Activities
Make their off time fun and educational!
Language & Literacy Lab University of Michigan 734-647-3712 firstname.lastname@example.org/childlanguage/home
Interested in seeing how your child learns and seeing their brain at work? Help University of Michigan researchers better understand language and reading development in children and adults by participating in their UofM study (HUM0033727). Their goal is to learn how children learn multiple languages, and "what brain mechanisms underlie language acquisition." They also involve participants with language and reading difficulties. It's a perfect opportunity to show your kids real scientific study at work! Registration is easy — contact them through e-mail or by phone.
Ann Arbor YMCA 400 W. Washington St. 734-996-9622 www.annarborymca.org
The Y's School Age Child Care Program for children K-4 includes healthy snacks and homework help, plus supervised indoor and outdoor activities. Tuition choices include two to five days/week, which includes all-day care on days that AAPS is closed for in-service days. Additional care is available during vacation and snow days. We have daily bus service from Ann Arbor Open, Wines, Bach, Lakewood, Haisley and Eberwhite. For more information contact Brandi Daniels at 661-8058 or go to www.annarborymca.org
Arts in Motion 2841 Boardwalk Dr. 734-222-6246 www.artsinmotion.net
Arts in Motion Dance and Music Studio is committed to providing high quality dance and music training for students of all ages in a professional, state-of-the-art facility. It is vitally important for kids to have a place to go where they can be creative in a supportive and challenging environment. Arts in Motion is that place!
Kenville Studios 323 E. Hoover Ave. 734-302-3502 www.kenvillestudios.com
When done right, dance is an art that elevates the soul. At Kenville Studios, the goal is to do it right, with training in everything from European classics like ballet and Flamenco to African dance, Indian dance and even hip hop. They've made movement their business, but training at Kenville Studios is not only serious — it's seriously fun, too.
Main Dish Kitchen 5060 Jackson Rd. 734-222-9210 www.maindishkitchen.com
Between the rush of pick up and drop off from school, piano lessons, and the like, dinner can become an afterthought, or worse, a chore. Main Dish Kitchen offers an easy and nutritious answer, with their homemade dishes (think slow-cooker chicken tikka masala or honey orange basil chicken with brown rice) that won't bust your budget. Delegate dinner to cooks you trust and enjoy some relaxation around the table after a long day of after-school shuttling!
Rock Paper Scissors 216 S. Main St. www.rockpaperscissorsshop.com 734-531-6264
Adults and children alike can get lost browsing the deliciously old-school selection at Rock Paper Scissors, a shop for everything from stationary to craft items to invitations. Their motto is to "celebrate everything," and spending time in the store is a celebration in itself of all things handwritten, thoughtful and stylish. Stop by the shop for crafty after-school projects that will bring out the creativity in tykes to teens.
Blue House 1026 S. Main St. 734-780-1762 www.bluehouseannarbor.com
Get creative at this locally loved handmade arts and crafts studio! Explore photography, make your own apron or learn to draw! Artists of all ages can expand their creativity with completely customizable projects. Visit the Community Studio during drop-in hours or schedule an activity for your preschool or elementary school students!