Working Parent Dilemma: Where to send your kids after school


As a dual-working parent household, it is inevitable that once our children start school, we will need to find after-school care for them. While I am still figuring out where they will go to school, I am simultaneously worried about finding a reliable, convenient, fun, and educational program that will make the time between school and work ending meaningful for them. Luckily, Philadelphia has many great options, both in school-based after care enrichment programs and independent programs, many of which offer school pick-up. Here is a round-up of a few of the best local options:

Philly Art Center
2501 Olive St.
Philadelphia, PA 19130
(215) 765-2787

514 Bainbridge St.
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 765-2787

Not your average cookie-cutter, arts & crafts program, Philly Art Center’s After School Program has been fostering out-of-the-box thinking for over a decade. Daily classes grouped by age provide instruction in drawing, painting, ceramics, mixed-media arts and more! The program includes outdoor play, snacks, homework help, and projects.

They offer pick up at over 10 schools around the city! Choose 1-5 days per week for ages 4-12.

* We have taken music classes and attended birthday parties here and have loved all of our experiences.

Zhang Sah
530 Bainbridge St.
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 923-6676

Zhang Sah’s after school program focuses on developing the mind and body, morals and ethics, and knowledge and confidence, through scientific and philosophical teaching.

Daily after school program activities include martial arts class for grades K-8, taught by a dedicated and qualified group of staff, a nutritious snack, indoor & outdoor free play, homework time, sports, and special projects throughout the year. Children arrive at Zhang Sah by bus, walking escort, or van, immediately following daily dismissal from school.

Philly PACK
729 S. 4th St.
Philadelphia PA 19147

From tap and ballet to theatre and jazz, PACK is an outlet for kids to get those wiggles out in a fun, organized, and creative way. At the end of each semester (there are two semesters per school year), all the hard work pays off with a special performance for families and the public that is always a sell out!

Classes for ages 4-13 are grouped by age, experience, and skill level. Pick-up options are available from Meredith Elementary school and sibling discounts are available, too!

Mi Casita
1415 Fairmount Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19130

Join Mi Casita for a Project Based Learning Program that incorporates art, movement, música, Spanish language learning and culture.

Children from grades K-3 will come together to create the Tesoros Travel Adventure. With each class, students will earn an Adventure Certificate and create a portfolio of art that culminates in the “Qué Bueno” Community Performance! Students will work directly with Mi Casita teachers for this opportunity to be creative and learn about cooperative project based learning with physical activity, music and art making- all in Spanish!

Philly InMovement
500 Kenilworth St.
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Welcoming to all skill levels, InMovement encourages students to believe in themselves and learn gymnastics at their own pace in a safe and patient environment. From the vault to the balance beam, your little one will gain skills, courage, and confidence through a progressive and mindful curriculum.

Classes for ages 5-12 vary between an hour to two hours long. Teachers pick up from Meredith Elementary School Monday through Fridays and from McCall on Wednesdays.

* We have taken gymnastics classes here and attended/hosted birthday parties here and have loved all of our experiences.

[Disclaimer: Some of the above content was provided by Philly Art Center. I have no affiliation with the above businesses and was not compensated for this post. Except where noted, I have not experienced these programs firsthand. All opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my employer, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.]

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