Like most parents, we know that choosing a class plan for you and your babe has to feel like the perfect fit. After all, this may be one of the first social meets you are attending. And like many of us you'll plan your day around this meet up for your little one as you both get out and about. This is why we are excited about Classes At founded by educator Leah Wiseman Fink who as a mom herself craved more simplified classes for her and her tribe of fellow parents.
As Classes At launches today we wanted to know how Leah ended up in this nook of Brooklyn and what we can expect from her new curated classes for parents and their littles. Thankfully this busy mama (and one chill teacher mom in our opinion) squeezed us into her day to share with us on what we need to know about these cool new classes.
MB: How long have you live in Brooklyn and been teaching?
Leah: I landed in NYC 15 years ago, and found my way to Williamsburg six years after that. Man, has it changed a lot since I arrived! I originally moved to the city to teach high school in the Bronx, getting my master's degree at the same time, a deal I think the city still offers. I thought I'd be here for five years, but in what seems like the blink of an eye, I had a career, husband, kids, and friends like family in our tight-knit parenting community. Teaching wise, after I left the classroom, I bopped around the DOE a bit, most notably working on opening brand new schools. Another highlight is when I had the opportunity to teach education leadership at Teachers College at Columbia University. I have also done some coaching principals and counseling parents on where to send their kids to schools.
MB: What do you love about living here?
Leah: There are so many things I love about living here, but let's start with the food. Any random slice of pizza is better than something you'd get in any other part of the county. And, yes, I'm biased because we own Williamsburg Pizza, the best of the best. Aside from the food, there's the non-stop energy, and how you can meet up with friends on a whim. What I love most about living here - and this was solidified when I had my second child - is the community. Sometimes I sit downstairs with my kids in our pizzeria and just chat with the different people who come from all walks of life. Most importantly, my community is made up of friends that are like family. I meet up with my mom friends and their kids every Friday after school and work. They are the people I call to pick up my son from school if I can't, and the people who bring us food when we're sick. We watch our children grow up together, and that's the best ever.
MB: What are some of your favorite spots that you feel kids learn from here in Greenpoint/Williamsburg?
Leah: It sounds cliche, but New York City is really our playground. The kids learn so much from being outside -- in parks, on the ferry, or even on walks around the neighborhood. My older son loves going anyplace with a reference to trains, including East River State Park. My daughter loves Aqua Bebe swimming class, Puppetsburg and Rockin Lolo's Spanish Music. Sammy has also learned so much from his preschool, Gan Chabad, who has also become an important part of our community. And I can't wait to send him to Brooklyn Arbor next year. In a full circle moment, it's one of the schools I helped open back in 2012.
MB: Tell us about Classes At?
Leah: I created Classes At based on both what I did gain the most value from as well as what I would have loved to have as a new parent. That is, curated classes and workshops for parents with a You Do You parenting vibe. Our classes are held AT a variety of remote, family-friendly locations. Our starting locations are a yoga studio on the southside and a baby store on the Williamsburg/Greenpoint border. In this way, a brand new mom who wants to go to a group can walk five blocks instead of a mile. Classes are also often taught by moms themselves, thus supporting moms who want to develop their own teaching passion.
MB: The classes sound amazing, how does one sign up?
Leah: I hope everyone will ask that question too! First, you can go directly to the website and see the whole schedule here. I will also be posting on the Hui and on social media. (@classes_at on ig; @classesat on twitter and Classes At on facebook) You can also join the newsletter to get all the latest. his summer, we're offering with two new parent groups, lactation support, Kindergarten Prep Camp, and a Birth Education Intensive. In the fall, I am looking forward to the Sleep training Sleepover, blow outs with babies, and a Special Education Circle. I hope to see a lot of you there!
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