Programs & Activities

Landon-Wirtjes_08-rock-programsPrograms for All Ages:

Family Fun Night – Bring the whole family out for a night of fun!  Family Fun Night is the perfect opportunity to wrap up your day and get to know other families at GiGi’s Playhouse.  We will eat dinner, play games and create a craft, then finish up with a story for everyone!  Join in the fun and make this a night to remember!

Open Play – This program invites families and their friends to the Playhouse for playtime!  Open Play helps promote positive beginnings for new families with a child with Down syndrome, creates awareness opportunities for peers and friends, as well as support and networking for current families. Come ready for fun and a crazy good time!  Open to families with children of all ages and their friends.

Art Explosion – This class provides hands on experiences with multiple art media and provides an outlet for individuals with Down syndrome to express themselves. During these winter classes, we will make projects for our Gala. Watch for upcomming dates for all ages.


Programs for Early Learners:

Learn & Play Saturdays – Join our playgroup! This program will help promote social, emotional and gross motor development through a variety of activities, including interactive play, sharing, cooperative games and physical activity.  Creativity and movement will be incorporated throughout the program.  Meet new friends, learn and grow while parents have the opportunity to socialize and network with one another.  Recommended for children ages 5 and under.

Zumbini – Funded by the Blazer Foundation. Zumbini is a program where the science of child development meets the magic of Zumba! It’s a new world of music and movement where little ones can sing, wiggle and grow alongside their caregivers. This class is designed to be fun, energetic and full of movements set to cool global rhythms and stimulate early childhood learning and development. Suitable for ages 0-4 years.

Music, Movement and More – Through dynamic musical and movement based activities, exposure to live instruments and musically inspred story time, your budding singer or musician will get inspired with this fun, high energy and stimulating music and movement class for caregivers and children. Experience the developmental benefits of music through singing, dancing and exploring age appropriate instruments and more! Staff is provided by Gateway Performing Arts Studio. Suitable for ages 5-12 years old.


Programs for School-Aged Children and Teens:

Literacy Tutoring – Each individual learns to read and develop literacy skills at a different pace. The GiGi’s Literacy Program builds a foundation in articulation, sight word recognition, vocabulary and comprehension through one-on-one literacy tutoring adapted to fit the learning style of individuals with Down syndrome.  Recommended for ages 3 and up. Click here for more information.

Teen Tastics – This group promotes friendships, social interaction and communication through a variety of social activities, outings and games for teens.  Recommended for all teens ages 13-17.

Math Tutoring – Our math program is designed to promote a positive experience of learning math and to develop a foundation of basic number understanding. Catering to children of all ages and skill levels, the GiGi’s Math Curriculum helps students with school preparedness, maintain grade level mathematics and gain important skills for independence. Recommended for ages 3 and up.

Karate Kickers – This program will focus on development of balance, coordination, discipline, focus, physical fitness, and confidence. There will be no physical contact between peers. Participants may kick and punch pads, but not each other. This class will be led by Jamie Potter, trained instructor from Midwest Youth Programs. Jamie has been teaching karate for over 20 years in the Rockford community. Suitable for ages 10-21 years old.

Cheer Gems – This program is an active, energetic group focused on being positive, recognition and spirit. It provides a springboard for confidence and gives the opportunity to work with other cheerleaders from the community. Coach Whitney Martin and the Hononegah High School Varsity Cheer Squad will be working with the team. Whitney will prepare the team and bring them to regional competitions. Suitable for ages 7-21 years old.


Programs for Adults:

Friday Friends – A fun night out to facilitate social interactions between adults with Down syndrome, their peers and the community.   All adults welcome from ages 18 and up.

Marvelous Mondays – Every Monday, the playhouse is open from 10-2 for adults with special needs. They will learn & enhance life skills, such as brushing teeth, making your lunch and housekeeping skills. We also have fun making special crafts or make a garden on our outdoor playground. Never a dull moment for this group!


Parent Support:

Pre-Natal Diagnosis Support – GiGi’s offers accurate and positive information about Down syndrome to families who have just received a pre-natal diagnosis. Contact the Playhouse for more information.

Parties – Parties for just about anything! Halloween, birthdays, 4th of July, etc. Check our Online Calendar!