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Helpful Websites for Families

The Michigan Department of Education

PBS For Parents

This site contains guides on a variety of topics such as child development, curriculum connections, and technology for kids. It also shares information on hot issues in education. On the lighter side, there are games, stories, and guides to the TV programs offered by PBS.

The guide is also available in Spanish

. Bienvenidos a PBS Padres!

Scholastic for Parents

This site contains age appropriate guides for helping your child learn to love reading. Divided into early childhood and school age children, the site also contains resources for helping your child with math, technology and other subjects. Additionally, there is an array of information about family matters.

Time for Kids Teacher’s Homepage

This site shares diverse resources for parents including virtual tours around the world, kid-appropriate current events stories, homework help, and games.

FunBrain for Parents

Educational games are the highlight of this site. The games cover all interest areas and target specific age levels. There are “parent-kid challenges,” “homework relief,” and “books on the run” links. Also linked to this site, there is a family education newsletter that helps with school, life, entertainment, and special needs issues.


This website shares reviews of “cool new books” and authors. The books are categorized by age and by genre. There is a link for podcasts and another for book clubs. The newsletter highlights the newest and best on the site.

Let's Go Learn Reading Instruction

Let’s Go Learn provides innovative online tools to drive long-term measurable academic success using a central hub of efficient, research-based diagnostic assessment, differentiated instruction, program placement, and historic data storage.

Ann Arbor Area Piano Teachers Guild


Referrals to qualified piano teachers for all levels and ages. Recitals, workshops, award competitions, student achievement testing, financial aid. Summer music camp. Sponsors Mostly Music Camp; scholarships available.,

Ann Arbor Art Center

117 W. Liberty [map]

994-8004 ext. 101

Year-round classes and workshops in all art major media for children, teens, and adults. Art parties, workshops, summer and vacation camps, art parties for birthdays and team building, and more. Studio space available for event rentals.,

Ann Arbor Chinese Center of Michigan

P.O. Box 130733, AA 48113


Traditional Chinese language classes and cultural activities for preschool-high school, including martial arts, sketching, table tennis, Chinese yo-yo, and drama. Sept.-June, Fri. 7-9:50 p.m. at Northside Elementary School, 912 Barton Dr.,

Ann Arbor Community Center

625 N. Main [map]


After-school programs, tutoring, and recreation Oct.-May for grades 1-5. Ten-week summer camp for ages 5-12; programs year round on health, financial, and community awareness for all ages. Call for fees.,

Ann Arbor District Library

343 S. Fifth Ave. [map]

327-4200, Youth Department: 327-8301

Activities for youth and families year round at the Downtown branch and other local branches: Malletts Creek (3090 E. Eisenhower), Pittsfield (2359 Oak Valley), Traverwood (3333 Traverwood), and West (2503 Jackson, Westgate Shopping Center). Playgroups (children under age 2 accompanied by caregivers) and preschool storytimes (children age 2 & over accompanied by caregivers) year round. Summer Family Reading Program for all ages offers games, programs, and prizes. Arts and crafts, magic and puppet shows, video game tournaments, author and storyteller visits, and musical programs. All activities free.

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Ann Arbor District Library

Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

220 E. Ann [map]

995-5439. Recorded information: 995-5437

Nearly 250 interactive science and technology exhibits, including a light and optics gallery, a full-size ambulance, several energy exhibits, and the Measure Up health and fitness station. Special demonstrations 1 weekend most months, and other programs most weekends. New and traveling exhibitions, preschool gallery, birthday parties, camp-ins and outreach and distance learning programs. Memberships available. See website for hours and prices.,

Ann Arbor Music Center & Rock Band School

312 S. Ashley [map]


Private lessons in guitar, bass, drums, voice, piano, harmonica, saxophone, ukulele, and more. Rock, blues, and jazz band classes for ages 8-18. Rock and jazz summer camps. All ages and skill levels. Classes daily year round. Instrument repairs and rentals.,

Rec & Ed (Ann Arbor Public Schools Department of Community Education and Recreation)

Pioneer High School, "E" wing, 1515 S. Seventh


Classes and sports leagues for preschool through high school offered year round after school, evenings, and weekends. Instructional classes include art, dance, languages, gymnastics, LEGO robotics, martial arts, music, chess, and sports (see Youth Sports, below). Summer camps for children preschool-high school. Call to receive youth sports mailings, scholarship information, or quarterly catalogs.

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Ann Arbor School for the Performing Arts

637 S. Main [map]


Classes for all ages. Early childhood arts classes include Music Play (infants, toddlers, and preschoolers), Dalcroze Eurhythmics (ages 3-6), Musical Theater (ages 5-10), Keyboard Club (ages 4.5-8), and Kinderstrings Violin and Cello (ages 4-6). Jazz studies program for players of all levels. Orchestral ensembles include the Junior String Orchestra, Sterling String Orchestra, Youth Symphony Orchestras (grades 1-11), and the New Horizon Senior Strings Orchestra. Group classes include flute (ages 6-8), recorder (ages 6-8), children's choir (grades 2-6), and the teen choir (grades 7-10). 15-week semesters for classes and ensembles begin in Sept. & Jan. Private instruction for all ages in piano, voice, woodwinds, strings, brass, percussion, organ, and guitar. Summer sessions and camp.,

Ann Arbor Suzuki Institute of Music

Mary Lou Roberts, coordinator, 995-2099

Organization of Suzuki teachers and parents provides individual and group instruction for preschoolers to high schoolers in violin, viola, cello, guitar, flute, piano, and string bass.,

Ann Arbor Young Actors Guild

P.O. Box 79, Whitmore Lake 48189


Theater opportunities for beginning to experienced actors age 8 through college with professional directors and teachers. 5 full productions per year; workshop-style auditions for inclusive casting. 2-week summer camp at the U-M Student Theatre Arts Complex.,

Ann Arbor Youth Chorale

1100 N. Main, suite 201B [map]


Two auditioned choirs for boys (with unchanged voices) and girls, ages 9-16. Both choirs perform annual winter & spring concerts locally. Concert choir tours nationally and internationally. Sept.-May.,

Ann Hua Chinese School

P.O. Box 130212, AA 48113


Offers Chinese language and cultural classes for K-12 and adults. Courses are designed for heritage and non-heritage students. Meets Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at U-M Dow Bldg., first floor (2300 Hayward, North Campus). Follows AAPS calendar. Chinese New Year celebration and summer activities, including summer camp for ages 7-12. Call for rates.

Boy Scouts of America Great Sauk Trail Council

1979 Huron Pkwy. [map]


Indoor and outdoor activities for Cub Scouts (grades 1-5) and leadership activities for Boy Scouts (grades 6-12). Call or email for referral to a troop in your area.,

Boychoir of Ann Arbor

1100 N. Main [map]


Choral performance, vocal training, and music education for boys ages 8-18. Two choirs perform classical, sacred, and secular music in local concerts and at area community events, weddings, and private functions. Auditions by appointment year round. Camp in June.,

Bryant Community Center (Community Action Network)

3 W. Eden Ct. [map]


Supervised after-school educational and recreational programs for grades K-12. Six-week summer day camp for grades K-5 features swimming, reading, activities with dogs, art, games, and field trips. Free toy library for all ages. Call for fee, schedule, and eligibility requirement information. Scholarships available.

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Buhr Park Children's Wet Meadow Project

Jeannine Palms, 971-5870; Andy Brush, 973-9161

Children helped create and continue to care for this educational site and ecosystem, which acts as a filter for storm-water runoff and supports a diverse habitat of plants and animals. Projects open to all ages.,


Suzanne Smith, 662-2325

Cello program for students ranging from beginners to advanced players. Holistic teaching philosophy helps students relax and become grounded at the cello for greater confidence, mastery, and ease of playing.,

Dance studios

Many private studios offer dance instruction. Search online or see the Yellow Pages for listings.

Domino's Petting Farm

24 Frank Lloyd Wright [map]


Ponies, llamas, goats, pigs, sheep, chickens, donkeys, and cows. Mon.-Fri. 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Adults $5, children ages 2-12 & senior citizens, $4.50, children under age 2 free. Hayrides included. Open year round. Pony rides on weekends. Birthday parties and picnics: call for group rates.,

4-H youth programs (MSU Extension Washtenaw County)

705 N. Zeeb [map]


Programs for ages 5-18 include animal care, arts, crafts, gardening, horses, nutrition, natural resources, community service, and leadership. 4-H Youth Show, last week in July, offers animal and still project judging contests, prizes, and many other activities. Also, outreach programs for at-risk youth. $10 yearly participation fee; some costs for activities., (click on 4-H)

Gallup Park River Kids

3000 Fuller Rd [




Exploratory program for ages 2-4 (with caregiver) using kayaks, paddleboats, and canoes, plus fishing and storytelling. River Kindergartners for ages 5 & 6 offers same activities. Call for dates and times; $52-$64/per child per month.,

Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan

Ann Arbor Regional Center, 1900 Manchester [map]

(800) 497-2688

Six age divisions for girls ages 5-18. Activities include camping, leadership and career exploration, and community service. Call to volunteer, join, or start a troop.,

Jewish Community Center

2935 Birch Hollow [map]


After-school child care and enrichment classes in art, sports, and more for grades K-5 during the school year (transportation from local schools) and monthly Kids' Night Out on Saturdays for grades K-5. <1>For K-8: Day programs during school breaks and days off school for grades K-8 (Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-6p.m.). Summer camp at Independence Lake Park. Programs for middle and high schoolers.,

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Jump City

2825 Boardwalk [map]


Age 1 & over can bounce on giant inflatables during birthday parties (call for rates and schedule) or drop-in playtimes ($7) June 21-Sept. 3: Tues. 9:30-11:30 a.m., Thurs. 1-3 p.m., Fri. 6-8 p.m., Sun. 4:30-6:30 p.m. Call for extended hours during school holidays and weekends.,

Korean School of Ann Arbor

P.O. 8435, AA 48107


Sept.-June, Sat. 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Tappan Middle School, 2251 E. Stadium. Korean language and culture taught in English and Korean. Open to all, ages 4-adult.,

Leslie Science & Nature Center

1831 Traver [map]


Natural science and environmental education for youth and families. Indoor and outdoor activities on 50 acres of fields, woods, prairies, and ponds. Programs for groups, birthday parties, weekend and special events, nature day camps during the summer and school breaks. Hikes encouraged. Building can be rented. Call for fees and program schedules.,

MPulse Summer Performing Arts Camp

1100 Baits (1281 Moore Bldg) [map]


U-M faculty teach this summer performing arts program for students entering grades 10-12 and graduated seniors. Two-week in music performance (clarinet, double reeds, flute, harp, horn, percussion, saxophone, trombone, voice), performing arts technology, theater, and dance. Three-week musical theater workshop open to those entering grades 11 & 12. Check website for fees and program details; scholarships available.,

Neutral Zone

310 E. Washington [map]


Youth-driven teen center for grades 9-12. Programs in arts and culture, music and technology, literary and performance arts, and community leadership. Drop-in activities include tutoring, pool, Ping-Pong, computer lab, DVD graphics lab, recording studio, video games. Events (sometimes a cover charge) include live music performances, DJ parties, and poetry slams Membership free; program fees vary (scholarships available). Mon.-Thurs. 2:30-8 p.m., Fri. 2:30-6 p.m. Special events on Sat. & Sun.,

Peace Neighborhood Center

1111 N. Maple [map]


After-school tutoring and clubs for elementary and middle school students. Also, a year-round college and career exploration program, homework help, counseling, health seminars, teen recreation, and drug prevention and rehabilitation programs. Six-week summer day camp on site for children entering grades K-8. All activities free, except $50/family for summer camp.,

Pittsfield Township Parks & Recreation

701 W. Ellsworth [map]


Offers horseback riding lessons (ages 5-17), cooking classes (grades 1-5), and bowling leagues (ages 3-8). See website for catalog.,

Scrap Box

581 State Cir.[map]

994-0012; 994-4420 (recorded information)

Parents and children of all ages can browse through a warehouse of materials for arts and crafts projects ($4/small bag, $6.50/large). Birthday parties and workshops by appointment. Tues.-Fri. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Call for summer or holiday hours.,

Talking Colors Art Studio


Art classes for children of all ages at Rudolf Steiner High School, 2230 Pontiac Tr. Summer, homeschool, after-school, school break, and vacation programs, plus portfolio preparation for art schools. Call for prices.,

U-M Exhibit Museum of Natural History

1109 Geddes [map]


Guided and unguided tours for school groups. Outreach programs, planetarium shows, birthday parties for children, and educational programs for families and adults. Free admission; donations welcome. See also listing in the Libraries, Museums, & Galleries section. Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. noon-5 p.m.,

U-M Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum


Matthaei (1800 N. Dixboro) offers self-guided or docent-led tours and daytime and evening classes for adults and children of all ages. The Arb (1610 Washington Hts.) Thurs. evening scout programs and Sat. morning youth programs. See Also listing in the Recreation

U-M Youth Ensembles

U-M School of Music, Theatre & Dance, 1100 Baits


Michigan high school students in grades 9-12 (string players in grades 7-12) may audition for the Michigan Youth Symphony Orchestra, Michigan Youth Band, Michigan Youth Jazz Improvisation Ensemble, Michigan Youth Women�s Chorale, and Michigan Youth Chamber Singers. All ensembles conducted by department faculty. Auditions Apr. & Sept. Weekly rehearsals Sun. afternoons Oct.-Mar. Concerts in Nov. & Mar. For fees, call, email, or visit website.,

Wild Swan Theater

410 S. Maple [map]


After-school theater classes, summer drama camps, and participatory workshops for students in grades K-12, including activities designed for participants with disabilities.,


400 W. Washington [map]


Preschool programs (ages 2 1/2-5) include dance, swimming, martial arts, and gymnastics. Programs for youth (ages 6-11) include after-school care, summer camps, dance, swimming, gymnastics, indoor soccer, basketball, flag football, netball, volleyball, floor hockey, and martial arts. Teen programs (ages 12-17) include after-school, Youth Volunteer Corps, Youth in Government, summer camps, dance, swimming, martial arts, and fencing. Financial assistance available. Program details, rates, and registration online.

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Young People's Theater

359 Metty Dr. Mailing address: 401 W. Morgan, AA 48108 [map]


Theater, voice, and dance workshops and classes for ages 4-high school, theater productions for ages 4-high school, and summer theater camps for ages 5-high school.,

Yourist Studio Gallery

1133 Broadway [map]


Working studio offers after school clay classes for students ages 8-11 at all levels.,

Youth in Harmony


Vocal music education and introductory singing for grades K-8. Four-part "barbershop" chorus for middle and high school students offers performance opportunities at clinics and festivals. More information for high schoolers at

Zap Zone

2809 Boardwalk [map]


Laser tag and arcade. Birthday and group parties. Mon.-Thurs. 4-10 p.m., Fri. 3 p.m.-midnight (June-Aug.: Mon.-Thurs. noon-11 p.m., Fri. noon-midnight), Sat. 10 a.m.-midnight, Sun. noon-9 p.m.


115 E. Liberty (inside Liberty St. Robot Supply & Repair) [map]


Writing center offers students ages 8-18 drop-in tutoring Mon.-Thurs. 3:30-5:30 p.m., in-school tutoring, field trips, workshops, writing labs, help with student publications, and one-on-one help for English language learners. All programs free.,

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