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Bigger Kids

Great before-and-after school programs in the GTA

Check out our list of before-and-after school programs available to kids in the GTA

By Maggie Vourakes
Great before-and-after school programs in the GTA

Toronto

Where:
Kidz Smart (Bayview Ave. & Millwood Rd.)
Ages: 6-12
How much: $30/day
Drop-off: 3:45 p.m.
Pick up: 6:30 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Homework club includes fusion martial arts, hip-hop dance, cooking lessons and Wii sports
Other important notes: Ontario certified teacher onsite; free pickup from local schools; healthy snacks provided

Where: YMCA (various locations)
Ages: 6-12; some centres also accept as young as four years old
How much: About $16/day
Drop off: 7 a.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Science, arts and crafts, drama, outdoor play
Other important notes: Peanut-free environment; activities organized around kids’ interests

Where: iCompute (program offered onsite to schools in the GTA)
Ages: 6-12
How much: $99/8 weeks
Hours: 1 hour each week
What your kids will be up to: Designing their own video games, comic books, feature films and taking their own original photos
Other important notes: All instructors come from media backgrounds; kids are supplied with Apple Macbooks and digital cameras

Where: ARC (After-school Recreation Care), City of Toronto (various locations)
Ages: 6-12
How much: $15/week
Drop off: After school
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Games, art projects, sports
Other important notes: Subsidies available for those who qualify; walking escorts from school provided at some locations; ratio of 15:1
Where: Cabbagetown Youth Centre
Ages: 6-12
How much: Free
Hours: After school - 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Homework, sports, playing outside in good weather
Other important notes: No waiting list; free pick-up from local schools; evening sports offered Mon-Thurs from 6-8:30 p.m.

Where: Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre (Bloor St. & Spadina Ave.)
Ages: 6-12
How much: $142 to $160 per month
Drop off: 3:45 p.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Youth floor hockey, basketball, cooking, yoga
Other important notes: Program is open to all children; staff trained in first aid, CPR

Where: LucSculpture Studios
Ages: 6-13
How much: $120 for seven weeks or $20 per drop-in. Only available Wednesday and Thursday
Drop off: 4:30 p.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Sculpting, drawing, painting, writing and storytelling
Other important notes: Classes are available in French

Where: The Chef Upstairs, 516 Mount Pleasant Road, Toronto
Ages: 5 and up
How much: $250/week
Drop off: 3:15 p.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Hands-on food preparation, food games, learning about nutrition, arts and crafts, supervised homework help
Other important notes: All classes led by a certified chef and support staff; free bus pickup from Leaside and Davisville schools

Where: Canadian Opera Company
Ages: 7-12
How much: $10/term
Hours: 4-6pm, once a week
What your kids will be up to: Writing scripts, singing, designing costumes and rehearsing for the big final performance
Other important notes: Don’t need a music background to join; program available fall, spring and summer terms.

York Region

Where:
Le-Club, Thornhill
Ages: 4-12
How much: $320 month for morning and afternoons
Drop off: 7:15-8:30 a.m.
Pick up: 3-6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Activities are designed around children’s interests; kids create their own pottery, watercolours; indoor or outdoor exercise mandatory
Other important notes: Most locations wheelchair accessible; school follows Reggio Emilia approach; 14 licensed childcare centres throughout York region

Durham Region

Where:
Eastview Boys and Girls Club, Oshawa
Ages: 5-17
How much: Yearly membership $50 for kids 6-12 and $20 teens 13-17
Drop off: 3 p.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Sports, games, computer lab, swimming, cooking
Other important notes: Homework help; healthy snacks offered

Peel Region

Where:
Kidnetix, Brampton
Ages: 5-12
How much: $90/week
Drop off: After school
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Arts and crafts, outdoor activities and team games
Other important notes: Bus pick-up from school; all staff ECE-certified, trained in first-aid, CPR and police background checked

Where: Magnitude Well Being Centre
Ages: 6-12
How much: $75/week
Drop off: After school
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Martial arts, homework time, indoor games
Other important notes: Bus pick-up from schools; nutritious snacks provided

Halton Region

Where:
Happy Times for Kids, Oakville
Ages: 5-12
How much: $475/month (includes before and after care)
Drop off: 7 a.m.
Pick up: 6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Drama skits, games, finishing homework, play time
Other important notes: Transportation to and from school; activities based on weekly themes

Where: Monkey See, Monkey Do, Burlington
Ages: 4-12
How much: $13-18/day
Drop off: 7-9 a.m.
Pick up: 3-6 p.m.
What your kids will be up to: Finishing homework, open-ended play
Other important notes: Strict allergy rules; integrated for children with special needs; transportation available at an additional cost

This article was originally published on Aug 11, 2010

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