Hanging out at home in PJs with your kids has its merits, but it’s the mommy-and-me classes that let you spend QT time with your kids (and new BFFs), while growing their imaginations and nurturing their skill sets. And D.C. has no shortage of grown-up plus kiddo meet-ups. There are a ton of great classes; many that may not even be on your radar. Here are some of the coolest to sign up for as a duo.

Metomorphosis-art-centerPhoto: Hilary Riedemann

Metamorphosis Art Enrichment Center
No longer are art classes just for kids. At Metamorphosis Art Enrichment Center, parents and their kids benefit from swirling colors around a palette, squishing papier mache between their fingers and dirtying their hands with charcoal. If you feel the need to always color in the lines while your little one is pushing you out of the way to make wide messy strokes then head to Metamorphosis where you and the kiddos can get your art on. Separate classes for kids and parents let their inner Jackson Pollock shine while you channel Cezanne.

Online: metamorphosisaec.com

Tiny Chefs Baking Bootcamp
For little ones who just can’t help but drag a chair to the counter every time you enter the kitchen, surprise them with some mommy and me cooking lessons. Tiny Chefs run their own bootcamps and classes that will teach kiddos (and parents!) how to measure, combine, sift, calculate and follow recipes so that one day you can have your very own, pint-sized and adorable sous chef. We particularly love their Baking Bootcamps and Tables of Tapas classes where kids ages 3-6 learn the fine of art of cookie making and tapas prep.

Online: tinychefs.com

baby-sign-langusagePhoto: Lars Plougmann via Flickr

Tiny Fingers
Don’t you wish that your baby could tell you exactly what he wanted and when he wanted it? Luckily, there’s a class that can help expedite your wishes! Tiny Fingers’ baby sign language classes are perfect for helping your growing mini-me let you know when she’s tired, hungry, or upset. It’s not magic, but you might think it is when your 9 month old signs “more milk”. Cue the hallelujah chorus and get the video cam ready to capture your uber smart and super cute “talking” baby.

Online: tinyfingers.com

Reading Rangers
Not all Mommy and Me classes have to revolve around tumbling, singing, working, or racing. Sometimes it’s nice to sit back with a great book and learn more about our wide, wondrous world. And, if that lesson also happens to have a fun craft tacked onto the end, even better. The National Park Service’s Reading Rangers combines a love of reading with a love of learning and crafting. Little ones will love reading new and amazing stories that transport them to faraway lands, blazing deserts, and rambling woods.

Online: nps.gov

D.C. Self Defense Karate for the Whole Family
Families who kick butt together stay together. At least they do at D.C. Self Defense Karate where the whole family learns the ancient Japanese art of Karate which emphasizes skill, discipline, fitness, virtue and leadership. Kids and their grownups can build muscle, sharpen mental awareness and gain self-confidence. Stronger bodies, disciplined kids, and a sharper mind? Where do we sign?!

Online: dcselfdefensekarate.com

imagination-stagePhoto: Imagination Stage via Facebook

Imagination Stage-Sunday Funday
Sunday Funday is no longer about sitting back and drinking a cold one with your buddies at the neighborhood watering hole. Now it’s filled with miniature antics from pint sized princesses, pirates, dinosaurs and probably a lion or two. So pile your herd in the car and head to Imagination Stage’s Sunday Funday where parents and their kiddos can bring stories to life through dance, art, movement and reading a favorite book. You even get a take home “Parent Pack” to keep your little stage monster entertained long after the curtain call.

Online: imaginationstage.org

Photoworks at Glen Echo Park
If your selfie-loving kiddo needs a little help broadening their picturing taking horizons, and you want to be seen as the expert on family photos then pick up a class at Photoworks where everyone can learn how to take awesome, Instagram and, dare we say it? Frame worthy pictures. The littles and the young at heart will learn new techniques for creativity, how darkrooms work, and how to take fantastic pictures that are a step up from the usual blurry, head cut off, or dark pictures you have a knack for.

Online: glenechopark.org

Are there any mommy-and-me classes that you and your little can’t get enough of? Tell us about itin the Comments section below. 

—Hilary Riedemann