5 fun classes to try with your baby

One way to make sure you get out of the house with your baby is to make a commitment to be somewhere on a certain day, at a particular time. Taking a class can do that to you for you.

Maybe this sounds like your idea of hell, sitting in a circle, singing folk songs with other new moms. But maybe it’s worth the chance that you might learn something. Or meet someone great.

Not every baby class is the same. Here are a menu of styles to choose from.

New mom support groups.
More like group therapy than a class, these groups are often hosted at your local hospital or religious organization, or at a specialty store for baby gear. Facilitated by a social worker, therapist or lactation consultant, everyone sits around in a circle, with baby on lap or on a blanket in front of them, and shares how they are doing. The group discusses coping strategies. It is a safe place to fumble with your boob hanging out or cry about your anxiety/career/yeast infection. It is worth paying for a session of a new mom group, because if you make a real friend, you will be bonded for life. Tips on how to get the most out of a Moms Group >

Postpartum yoga class.
This is a cross between a yoga class and a support group. It is also intended to support your transition into motherhood, but focused more on taking care of your body. Learning to slow down and breathe with my baby in the room was not an achievable task for me (see above reference to anxiety), but learning a better-for-my-back posture for nursing was worthwhile. I didn’t make any real friends in postpartum yoga, but it gave me somewhere to go with my baby where I was not expected to talk in coherent sentences, which was a relief. More on the extra bonuses you may find at a baby yoga classes >

Baby play class.
Though there are franchises like My Gym and Little Gym and Gymboree that offer play classes, it’s a good time to get to know your local parks and recreation department and YMCA. Check the listings online because they are often low commitment and low-priced. This genre of class is held in a space with tons of colorful mats, tunnels, and climbing things for your crawling baby to explore. Links and advice for seeking out a play class>

Swimming for babies.
Are you up for this challenge? Next-level parenting badges for anyone who takes baby to a swim class. Here’s what we’ve learned about swimming with babies.

Music Together.
The best thing you can do for your kid’s brain development at this early stage is talk to them. Words, words, words. But when you find yourself drawing a blank (or singing Blank Space) as you attempt to sing a night-night song, know that you are a good candidate for a session of Music Together. Here’s why we love it > 

Have you taken a class that’s not on this list? Baby sign language?

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