Nicknamed "The Garden City," Newton, Massachusetts is home to about 85,000 people, according to the 2010 U.S Census. Whether you are looking to enjoy the great outdoors during the summer or seeking fun times indoors during the winter, you can find plenty of ways to keep toddlers busy throughout the year in and around Newton. Your only problem might be trying to convince your little one that it's time to go home at the end of the day.
Get a Little Exercise
Whether your little ones are still learning to walk or mastering sports, a little exercise can go a long way to building a healthy body and having some fun. My Gym of Newton offers programs for children as young as 6-weeks-old, where kids up to age 2 get to participate in interactive songs, dance and puppet shows. There are also classes for older toddlers in which they learn how to balance, tumble and perform other gymnastics. Exxcel Gymnastics in Newton also offers gymnastics classes that incorporate music and dance. Here, toddlers can begin taking classes at age 18 months.
See the Museums
The Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, about 7 miles northeast of Newton, is free to children younger than age 3. Toddlers can see dinosaur fossils in the Vertebrate Paleontology and Dinosaurs exhibit or view a collection of birds and whales in the Great Mammal Hall. On the weekends, toddlers can also attend Nature Storytime to hear stories related to the museum's exhibits. The Boston Children's Museum in Boston, located about 10 miles east of Newton, is also home to several exhibits. Toddlers can create in the art studio, learn to use hand tools at Johnny's Workbench, watch short plays on the KidStage, and do some moves on a lighted dance floor in the Kid Power exhibit.
Boston's New England Aquarium, about 10 miles from Newton, is home to several aquatic species. In addition to checking out the aquarium, toddlers can watch live animal presentations daily or catch a show at the IMAX theater -- most of which focus on aquarium-related subjects, like penguins or reefs. At the Boston Nature Center, located about 10 miles southeast of Newton in Mattapan, you and your toddler can explore the trails and wetlands and view the many migratory bird species. You can also go for a relaxing walk through the park before ending it with a picnic.
Visit the Zoo
If the weather cooperates, pack up the toddlers for an afternoon at Franklin Park Zoo, about 10 miles southeast of Newton in Dorchester. In addition to seeing the animals, you can sign up your toddler for one of the zoo's many programs, including Wild Adventures, which includes both classroom interactions and behind-the-scenes tours of the zoo. The Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary in Lincoln, located about 11 miles northwest of Newton, is home to a real farm. Your tyke can practice his gardening skills in the learning garden, get a ride on a hay wagon and visit with the farm animals.
- Newton City Hall: About Newton
- Exxcel Gymnastics: Open Gym
- My Gym of Newton: Contact My Gym Newton
- My Gym of Newton: Class Schedule
- Boston Children's Museum: Exhibits
- Harvard Museum of Natural History: Plan your Visit
- Harvard Museum of Natural History: On Exhibit
- New England Aquarium: Maps, Directions and Parking
- New England Aquarium: Animals and Exhibits at New England Aquarium
- Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary: Home
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