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Cool After-School Enrichment Programs in Indianapolis

As families get back into the structure of a new school year, many seek out ways to extend the school day, for a variety of reasons.

After-school programs provide enriching experiences for families who need that extra support during after-school hours, and for parents who are looking to add even more fun and learning to a child’s day.  

Indianapolis offers every type of after-school program imaginable, from all-encompassing programs to specific classes that focus on music, art, dance, STEM and more. If you’re looking for enrichment opportunities for your child this year, check out these locations that can be found all around town. 

Traditional Programs 

YMCA of Greater Indianapolis

Multiple locations

The YMCA offers a comprehensive after-school program at over 100 school locations throughout the city, making it the largest provider of school-aged childcare in Indianapolis. “Our curriculum components include arts, STEM projects, physical activity and nutrition, global learning and inclusion,” says Amy Panetta, executive director for before and after school programs. “We also have a focus on character development, which is based on our four core values of being caring, honest, respectful and responsible.” The YMCA after-school programs offer countless ways for learning and fun beyond the school day. 

The Goddard School 

4560 E. 62nd St., Indianapolis

The Goddard School’s kids club picks up where school leaves off. From the moment school-aged children step through the door, they get help with their homework and chances to play with their friends. They also offer fun, hands-on activities that help reinforce what children learn in school to enhance their educational experiences. This all-encompassing program is ideal for families who need traditional after-school care and a safe, loving and enriching environment for their school-aged children. 

Dance & Music Programs 

Dance Creations Academy 

9257 Castlegate Dr., Indianapolis

If you have an aspiring dancer at home, Dance Creations Academy offers classes for toddlers through teenagers that are held after school. Families can choose from a variety of classes and times, and children can learn through movement at this favorite enrichment opportunity.  

Indianapolis Music Academy

5703 South East St., Indianapolis

Indianapolis Music Academy is an award-winning music school that offers enriching opportunities for students ages 5 through adults. Their unique Musical Ladder system is a favorite feature, and students can benefit from one-on-one learning after a full day in a classroom with other students. 

Art 

Indianapolis Arts Center

820 East 67th St., Indianapolis

For the young artist in your home, consider an after-school class with the Indianapolis Arts Center. There are options for all school-aged children, and they can choose from lessons in painting, drawing, ceramics and more. This enrichment opportunity is ideal for students who need a creative outlet after a day of school. 

Herron School of Art + Design 

735 W. New York St., Indianapolis

Aspiring artists will also love the after-school programs offered by the Herron School of Art + Design. These classes are designed for grades 1-12 and inspire young artists to learn and grow. Both individual classes and camps are offered and include lessons on drawing, illustrating, ceramics and more.

Physical Activity

The Rec Room 

5220 E. 65th St., Indianapolis

The Rec Room offers gymnastics classes for students of all ages and all levels. Whether a seasoned gymnast, or a child just eager to move after a day behind a desk, all students will enjoy this active and enriching after school option. Classes are offered in eight-week sessions with multiple times and levels from which to choose.

Ninja Zone Academy

Multiple locations 

Perhaps the most unique option on this list is Ninja Zone Academy. If you have an active child at home who is up for a challenge, sign them up for after-school classes that are as fun as they are exciting. With a monthly fee, students receive one class per week, as well as unlimited “challenge sessions” to work on those new ninja skills. Children through age 11 can participate and these classes offer a great opportunity for physical activity after a day of school.

The bottom line is: Quality after-school programs provide children with a safe, enriching environment to spend their time after school, and they provide peace of mind for working caregivers, Panetta says. Many after school programs in Indianapolis share this point of view with the variety of enrichment opportunities they for school-aged children all over the city.

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