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Specialty Programs

As our Playhouses grow, so do our program offerings.  Each GiGi’s Playhouse is unique and offers a variety of FREE education and therapeutic-based programs to meet the needs of their families and their community.

All  Ages….recommended ages vary by Playhouse 

Art Explosion –  Provides hands-on experience with multiple art media and provides an outlet for individuals with Down syndrome to express themselves, build confidence and socialize with peers.

Cooking Club –  Get cooking with your friends at GiGi’s! This program is geared towards building safety awareness in the kitchen, preparing healthy meals that taste great.

Daddy & Me –  Fathers, Grandfathers, Uncles and Brothers are invited to play, network and connect with one another in a fun and active program.

Dance –  Introduces basic dance styles, techniques and movements to participants while improving gross motor skills, increasing mental and muscle memory and increasing cardiovascular conditioning, strength, flexibility and coordination.

Drama Troupe –  Focuses on confidence and cooperation will be practiced through a variety of drama improvisation techniques, theatrical productions and games to recreate and learn self-expression with vocal and physical freedom.
Family Night – Bring the whole family in for a fun time at GiGi’s!  This is the perfect opportunity to wrap up your day and get to know other GiGi’s families!  Refreshments, games and a fine motor activity will leave you with a night to remember!

GiGi’s Adventures –  A formative program where participants can spread their wings and experience their community in a safe and supportive environment.  Each day participants will engage in activities that promote community skills, social development, exploration of new places and adventures-this include art and culture in our surrounding community.

Music in Motion –  Tap into your inner rock star where every voice shines!  Music in Motion will build self-confidence, strengthen social skills, communication and motor skills through the therapeutic use of music and dance.

New Caregivers Group –  Come and find an outlet for the everyday parenting challenges, receive support in coping with a diagnosis, establish connections within GiGi’s Playhouse and the community, as well as learn the philosophy of GiGi’s Playhouse and engage in programming. This program provides support and networking for new and current families.

Nuestros Angeles –  Promotes support, friendship, networking and socialization! Come together to embrace your child’s diagnosis, share experiences and learn from one another.

Open Play –  Promotes positive beginnings for new families, creates awareness opportunities for peers and friends while allowing families to network and support one another.  Come ready for fun and a crazy good time! Open to all families of all ages.

Soccer –  Participation gives kids of abilities an opportunity to practice ball skills, be part of a team and get a good workout. We will work to increase gross motor skills, cardiovascular conditioning, strength, flexibility and coordination!

Yoga –  Helps your child develop healthy habits for a lifetime of wellness and happiness. Yoga gives children a practice and routine that integrates physical, mental and emotional development. Yoga program will help your child develop more personal awareness and learn specific strategies to maintain focus and manage their emotions and impulses.

1:1 Handwriting –  Participants will use the Handwriting Without Tears Curriculum to improve handwriting skill including: Physical Approaches and Skill Development, Letter Skills, Word Skills, Sentence Skills, and Writing Conventions. Participants will use a multisensory approach (visual, tactile, auditory and kinesthetic) to learn and practice letter formation to create words, sentences and stories.

Family Speaker – Focuses on topics that help your loved one, allows for time to listen, learn, ask questions and network.  Do you have a topic you want to hear more about, let us know.

GiGi’s Games with Friends - Designed to increase strategic thinking skills through fun and interactive games! Participants will put their literacy, math and fine motor skills to practical use during this exciting program!

 

Early Learners  
2 & Under –  The perfect place to meet new friends, learn and grow, while parents have the opportunity to socialize and network with one another. Recommended for ages pre-natal to 2 years old.

Preschool Prep –  Prepares and re-enforces tasks in a structured environment in preparation for Pre-School.  Everything from appropriate peer interaction, transition of skills, center based learning to visual learning cues will be addressed. Recommended for ages 24-48 months.

Story Telling –  Focuses on an interactive story time which includes activities, group & independent literacy exploration and thematic play.  Recommended for ages 0-5.

Special Olympics Young Athletes™ – Focuses is on fun activities that are important to mental and physical growth, participants enjoy games and activities that develop motor skills and hand eye coordination. This program is in partnership with Special Olympics and is a unique sport and play program for children with intellectual disabilities. Recommended for ages 2 ½ to 7.

Little Fingers, Big Plans – Promotes and teaches the foundations of handwriting, incorporating fine motor, sensory awareness, social interactions and language skills.  Recommended for young learners developing handwriting skills.

Skill Builders –  A hands-on program offering center-based activities that emphasize fine-motor skills, provide support at each center while children rotate through centers, all while promoting social interactions and fun!  Recommended for children ages 3-5.

Social Skills for Young Learners –  Focuses on targeting functional pragmatic skills. Social learning will be provided through play with a focus on a variety of targets including: social communication, emotions, eye contact and big and small problem solving skills.  The group will promote peer to peer interaction in a fun, friendly and welcoming environment. Recommended for ages 2-5.

Kindergarten Prep – transforms learning into a walk of discovery, offering safe and exciting opportunities at every turn while preparing your child for kindergarten. Recommended for ages 4-6.

School Age Learners  
Busy Hands, Bigger Plans –  While this program is primarily a handwriting group, we will focus on the many skills necessary for handwriting. Fine motor, sensory awareness, social interactions and language skill development will also be incorporated. Recommended for young learners developing handwriting skills.

Cheer Gems –  An active and energetic group focused on positivity recognition and spirit. Cheer Gems provides a spring board of confidence giving opportunities to participate on a cheer squad and have a shared experience with peers. Recommended for ages 6+.

Creative Exploration –  Focused on fun and engaging activities that encourage children to explore the world around them. To make this group the best experience for your child we ask that they are able to participate in play-based activities for at least 30 minutes. Recommended for ages 4 - 8 years old.

Homework Hoopla –  Supports the growth of students through provision of an affordable, safe, caring after-school environment.  We will provide guidance and care in a quiet, structured environment for students to complete their homework.  When homework is complete, planned activities are incorporated for enjoyment and a healthy snack is served.  This program is an extension of home, school and community.  Recommended for ages 6-21.

Backpack Buddies –  Focuses on a lesson including literacy and math components in a group setting, each lesson will explore two subjects in which participants have fun while learning.  Recommended for participants at or below a 2nd grade reading level.

Super Sibs –  A special time for siblings to talk about the food and the sometimes not-so-good moments of having a sibling with Down syndrome.  Share, play games and enjoy connecting with other siblings.  This program is for youth with a brother/sister with Down syndrome.  Recommended for siblings 6-13.

Karate Kickers –  focuses on the development of balance, coordination, discipline, focus, attention, wellness and confidence through the basic foundational movements of karate and martial arts. Recommended for ages 8+.

Tennis –  This program will teach participants the game of tennis, including proper techniques and game skills as well as sportsmanship, and point keeping.  The sessions will involve tennis drills which and will eventually lead to actual tennis games.  Recommended for ages 4+.

SciTech Kid –  Focuses on science, technology, engineering, and math (stem) learning and experiments in fun and challenging way. Sci-Tech Kid inspires children to build on their natural curiosity by teaching engineering concepts through hands-on learning! Recommended for ages 6-12.

Music in Motion –  Tap into your inner rock star where every voice shines!  Music in Motion will build self-confidence, strengthen social skills, communication and motor skills through the therapeutic use of music and dance.  Recommended for ages 6-12.

Teens
Friends, Fun & Fitness –  Our Friends get together each week for physical activity and a healthy snack, tailored just for teens! Our group of Friends is growing and we want you to join us! Friends, Fun & Fitness is provided in cooperation with the Midwestern University Occupational Therapy Program. Recommended for ages 13-21.

SciTech Teen –  focuses on the scientific method and helps our friends at the Playhouse learn and use this method to complete experiments to learn about science in the environment. During this program, we will complete experiments that involve chemistry, physics, mechanics, acoustics and other various areas of science. We work on expressing our ideas and thoughts about science in our world through writing or drawing and present our results to the group. Recommended for ages 13-17.

Social Skills for Teens/Adults –  Focuses on social skills needed to function within the community. Target skills will include conversation starters, perspective taking and teamwork/problem solving. Games and other activities will be incorporated to strengthen social interaction and practice skills.  Recommended for ages 13+.

Teen Tech –  Provides an opportunity for teens to learn and increase their technology skills to promote academic success while providing opportunities for socialization. Recommended for ages 13+.

 

Adults
S.M.A.R.T. –  Provides social interaction opportunities for participants to meet new friends, learn new skills and have lots of FUN! The rotating theme allows for learning through games, activities and games with peer interaction. Recommended for ages 18+.

Gratitude Committee –  Focuses on giving back to the community for the things we are generously given, showing appreciation for the community we live in. Recommended for ages 18+.

E.P.I.C. (Empowerment, Participation, Independence, Community) –  Provides opportunities for socialization and community involvement, while creating a fun and memorable experience for its participants. Participants work on vocational, communication, and social skills to boost confidence and encourage independence through goal oriented objectives. Recommended for ages 18+.

TEAM (Teaching Exercise, Activity, and Movement) –  Promotes a healthy life style, peer interaction and independence for adults.  The program is divided into equal time devoted to nutrition,  meal prep, exercise, and peer interaction over dinner. Recommended for ages 18+.

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