St Albans

St Albans




“BEST TOY” 2016, 2015


 Do you live in St Albans? Hatfield? London Colney? Harpenden? Luton? Knebworth? Berkhamsted? Radlett? Borehamwood? Potters bar? Welwyn Garden City? Hemel Hempstead?

Looking for things to do with children in Hertfordshire?

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Celebrating 40 years of Gymboree Play & Music

…40 year’s young and we’ve only just begun…

Here at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans, we run award-winning and fun-filled classes for babies and children from 0-5 years, and are based in a gorgeous brand new site in the centre of St Albans. There is something for every child here at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans! We have a full timetable of Classes and Open Gyms (free-play), with varied options so that you and your little one can make us part of your busy schedule.

Gymboree is a fantastic way to have great fun with your child and encourage learning and development through play. Based around our custom designed equipment, our sessions use music, song, dance and imaginative play to create a wonderful learning experience for all your little ones. You’ll also find that we are more than just a toddler group! Our baby play and toddler classes are structured and you’ll find each activity to be specifically tailored to a developmental goal. All classes are led by highly-trained and enthusiastic teachers.

We offer a FREE TRIAL for any of our classes, call or email us NOW!  01727 831551

For regular updates and news of events happening at Gymboree in St Albans you can follow us on social media

 Gymboree St Albans Facebook Page

Gymboree St Albans Twitter Page

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Please download our latest timetable:

Gymboree Play & Music St Albans Timetable 2018

To book a FREE TRIAL, please call us on 01727 831 551 or at


Classes are offered to pre-mobile babies and are suitable from newborn to 6 months.  Each session is theme based and is full of exciting sensory exploration using a variety of props, musical instruments, fibre optic light shows, puppet dances, bubbles, parachute play baby signing and more.Using Gymboree’s specially designed apparatus, physical activities are incorporated to help develop balance, co-ordination, and neck and upper body strength.


Our Gymboree Play & Learn classes are developmentally appropriate classes featuring lots of fun activities, fantastic equipment, songs, bubbles, parachute play and much more.These classes are 45 minutes in length and will help your child build strength, balance, co-ordination,social and early language skills and are suitable for mobile babies to age 5.


Inspire your child’s imagination and self-expression with a world of hands-on art activities. Through painting, printing, sculpture, drawing, collage, dramatic play and more, our art classes encourage confidence and support artistic potential.  Take home two finished art masterpieces each week.


 Enhance your child’s development and love of music through song, dance, movement games and instruments. Our Music classes are high energy and full of life, allowing children to express themselves freely and to move about when the mood strikes! A new musical style is explored every three weeks – from African to Classical, Jazz and Disco, R&B to Asia – introducing children to a variety of new sounds and rhythms from all over the world, from past to present!


 Develop your child’s love of music, dance and drama with our weekly drop-off classes for 3-5 year olds. These classes are seen as a way to develop control, coordination, poise, expression of feelings, expression of moods, expression of ideas and response to music. Our Theatre Arts programme develops all of these important skills and in doing so promotes independence and school readiness…Plus you get to watch your child in regular live performances with sets, costumes and props all made by them!


 Is a FREE session that you can attend as many times as you like to throughout the week.This is offered to active Gymboree members only. Open gym sessions are on various times throughout the week to suit all.

Turn your child’s special day into an unforgettable birthday celebration… Come and join the fun at Gymboree St Albans!

Voted UK’s “Best Children’s Party Entertainment” in 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2009.

Our dedicated teachers will create a unique and fun-filled party for you and your guests. Your magical party will include music and dancing, stories and adventures, bubbles and singing, and parents and children will have a fantastic time playing together at our beautiful site.

Let us help you have a stress-free and wonderful day to remember. You bring the food (finger food & drinks) while we provide everything from invitations, to paper plates, cups and napkins, to balloons and party bags.

We also run parties On-The-Go meaning we can come to your house or hired venue and provide 45-minute age appropriate, themed Art, Music or  Play & Learn for all to enjoy!


                                                                               Parties ON-SITE are held on Saturdays and Sundays

Gymboree Play & Music St Albans Party Brochure

Contact us on 01727 831 551 or for more information!

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Book a birthday party with us and receive HUGE discounts on a cake smash photo shoot for your little one!

Contact Carli today Bailie & Belle Photography


Just a quick note to say thank you so much for Elise's party this afternoon. Everyone had such a lovely time. Thanks for making the day extra special, it was just lovely!!

-           Joubert Family

Thank you so much for helping William have such a great 2nd birthday party! Everyone had a great time and really enjoyed the class as well as the free play. Thank you for making it so special!

-           Roberts Family

A big thank you for my wonderful pirate party which all of my friends and I really enjoyed!

-          Aidan, 3 years old

Thomas and all his friends really enjoyed his party last week – Thank you! It was the perfect venue for his 1st birthday celebrations!

-          Thomas Family

 Just a small note to say a big thank you for organising and managing my birthday party. I had a really good day! Mummy and Daddy would also like to say a big thank you!

-          Rishi, 2 years old

Gymboree Play & Music St Albans News!

40 Years Young & Still Having Fun!


  • Get Bedtime Ready at the Groromper Roadshow

    4. October 2018

    Parents listen up! We’ve teamed up with the UK’s most trusted sleep brand The Gro Company, to bring you the Groromper Roadshow!  Come along to one of our events to wind down for bedtime at a FREE fun activity session for toddlers aged 12-36 months at a Gymboree Play & Music near you!

    Dates of Groromper Roadshow at Gymboree Play & Musics across the UK

    Contact your local site to book your place now!

    Surbiton Mon 15th Oct 4pm

    St Albans Tues 16th Oct 4.30pm

    Warwick Tues 30th Oct 4pm

    Tunbridge Wells Thurs 8th Nov 4pm

    Edinburgh Wed 21st Nov 4pm


    It will give parents an exclusive opportunity to meet with the experts at Gro, get some handy bedtime tips and take part in a fun filled activity session to get little one’s ready to hit the hay! Everyone taking part will also get their hands on a Gro and Gymbo goody bag so don’t miss out! The exciting events, which promise to help little ones use up all their excess energy from the day and make bedtime easier, is in each location for one day only!  Families with children aged 12-36 months are invited to sign up to the free event, but don’t waste any time as spaces are limited. Contact the relevant Gymboree Play & Music to book your place now!

  • Why Infant Massage isn’t just for mothers…

    17. August 2018

    By Stephanie Gross, Director of Gymboree Play & Music St Albans.

    Increasingly, today’s fathers want to be emotionally bonded with their babies. However, men often feel dissatisfied with their ability to form this meaningful relationship. Fathers often worry they may be disadvantaged in developing this special relationship because women appear to have more opportunities and to be better equipped through various anatomical, physiological, and psychological adaptations; However, although men generally lack these predisposing parental mechanisms, they are equally capable of potentially developing a successful parental relationship. Fathers need to know that although their relationship with the child develops through different means, it can be equally as valid as the mother’s relationship. One proposed suggestion for helping fathers develop a relationship with their very young child is using the power of touch to help foster infant–father relationships.

    Touch is our most primal sense and is associated with the largest organ in the human body—our skin. Of all the senses to develop, touch is the first and begins before the baby is born. In the first few months of life, touch is used more often than hearing, sight, or smell as a way to learn about the physical world and to develop close, meaningful relationships. Touch is a powerful communicator because it often mirrors our own feelings toward another individual. Ultimately, infants are able to sense how their parents feel about them by the manner in which they are touched.

    In situations where infants are separated from their parents, such as war or famine, the detrimental effects of touch deprivation are evident. Blackwell (2000) states that “at the beginning of the 20th century, in war-torn Germany, infant mortality in residential care was as high as 71.5%. The reported cause of death was termed hospitalism, which is described as a lack of stimulation by an adult caregiver rather than death by poor nutrition or insufficient medical care”. A more modern example where touch deprivation occurs is in the neonatal intensive care unit. Infant massage has been employed in both of these kinds of environments and has successfully mediated the potentially negative consequences (Field, 2001).

    Scholz and Samuels (1992) suggest that providing caregiving education, such as infant massage, for new fathers can greatly impact the quality of the infant–father relationship. In their study, participating fathers appeared to “thrive on the emotional and motivational or attitudinal benefits of the increased opportunity to touch their infants”. Similarly, Cullen, Field, Escalona, and Hartshorn (2000) found fathers who massaged their infants were more “expressive, warm, and accepting in their interactions with their infants”. Considering the potential benefits of infant massage for fathers, measuring perceived paternal stress is an area of research that appears to be under investigated.

    The transition to parenthood is a developmental milestone that many men and women undertake in their lifespan. Although this transition is considered normal, it is also regarded as stressful. This transition may be even more stressful for fathers as they often do not have the same support and confidence in their abilities to parent. Because fathers experience a greater desire and social shift in their involvement in infant care, they may experience even greater stress in the transition to parenthood.

    Teaching infant massage to fathers appears to improve their feelings of efficacy toward being a parent. “Learning to love is a matter of neurobiology. And it begins with meeting babies’ basic needs” Porter, 2009.

    Stephanie holds IAIM infant massage sessions on-site; her next course starts on Saturday 1st September please contact for more information:    01727 831551

    To find out more about IAIM please follow this link : 

    To find out more about Gymboree Play & Music please follow this link : 

  • Local partnership with photographer Bailie & Belle

    20. June 2018


    We have been very lucky to team up with the wonderful Carli at Bailie & Belle to bring you and your little one a birthday celebration like no other!

    Book your little one a party with us at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans (On-Site or On-The-GO) and receive a discount on a cake smash photo shoot!

    Carli states ” I am very fond my of birthday parties in the studio. We have cake, we get messy, we wear our best clothes and then I have a very special miniature roll top bath that your little darling can sit in, we add lots of bubbles and even blow them around and take some absolutely gorgeous images to mark this very special occasion. It is super cute and children love it!”

    Whats included?

    A mini portrait session, a cake smash (cakes can either be provided or sourced by Carli at an additional cost), and finally a splash session!

    Once your party is booked with Gymboree Play & Music St Albans contact Carli to arrange your photo shoot!

    Whats my discount?

    1, Book now and receive £100 off (current price £349) and 10 digital files for being a VIP (5 digital files for regular customers).

    2, Book now and save £250 with all of the above PLUS a canvas print of your favourite image (canvas costs usually £75)

    For more information about Carli’s cake smash’s please follow this link: Bailie & Belle Photography


  • Steph at St Albans makes it to the finals – EWIF 2018

    12. April 2018

    We are so happy to tell you that our St Albans franchisee Steph has made it to the finals of this years Encouraging Women Into Franchising (EWIF) Awards 2018! Steph is up for “young woman in franchising of the year 2018” with two other ladies, Fingers crossed Steph becomes the 2018 winner 

    To celebrate this huge achievement Gymboree Play & Music St Albans is offering 20% off our award winning bubble ooodles all of next week (16th-21st April) and 20% off birthday parties when booked between 16th April and 15th May (£50 deposit required, party can be booked for anytime in 2018).

    To find out more about the awards and the other finalists please follow this link: EWIF Website


    28. February 2018

     sleep time babyKate Cohen is a Certified Children’s Sleep Consultant and a member of the Association of Professional Sleep Consultants. She works with families around Hertfordshire and beyond to advise and help tackle all things sleep.

    Did you know the clocks are changing on 25th March? I obviously keep an eye on it, but I’m always surprised at how quickly it comes around! In many ways changing to British Summer Time is great, brighter mornings, lighter evenings, but for those of us with children it can be a bit of a scary thought! Are they going to wake up even earlier? How am I ever going to get them to go to be at a decent time!

    So to help you out here are my top 5 tips to survive the clocks changing! As with most things I talk about I try to keep it nice and simple and fairly easy to implement:

    • Don’t act to quickly!: Delay changing the clocks in your house until the morning of the clock change, that way you can start the day as per normal and enjoy that satisfaction of knowing that you all slept in a bit later (even though you didn’t!)
    • Get them nice and tired: On the day of the time change get your child out and about to wear them about a bit more than usual, get yourself to a Gymboree session, head to the park or go for a walk to get some fresh air.
    • Push bedtime back: From the 25th put your child to bed 30 mins later than normal so 7:30pm rather than 7pm. Continue this for the next 3 days and then on the 4th night switch back to 7pm as they should by then have switch to the new time.
    • Don’t forget the naps: If your child is napping do the same, just put each nap 30 mins later than normal for 3 days and then revert back.
    • Check your child’s windows!: Remember that it’s now going to be lighter in the morning so have a look at the window coverings in the room and if there is any light getting in consider putting up a black out blind, to avoid early rising creeping in!

    I often find that parents often dread this time of year, but if you follow this plan, your child’s sleep and yours shouldn’t be interrupted too much. Remember that any upsets should be temporary and he change in the clocks should take no longer than a week to settle down, leaving you time to enjoy the lighter mornings and evenings in no time!

    And the good news is that because we are springing forward, this shift in time should be easier for your little ones to adjust to and if you have a really early riser it may actually even help to fix that issue!

    So there you have it, if you follow these tips you should eliminate that dread creeping in and transfer into British Summer Time easily.

    If you have any sleep issues big or small then I’m here to help, I run workshops to help educate mums or mums to be on all things sleep and how to get into great habits whatever the age! (My next workshop is being held at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans on the 10th March – you can find out details here

    I also work with families 1 on 1 to offer bespoke support on sleep issues with children aged between 0 – 6 yrs old. If you would like to know more about the work I do or to book a free 15 min call to discuss anything sleep related then have a look here

  • Baby steps back into exercise

    19. December 2017

    Baby steps back into exercise.

    There are so many photos of celebrity mums on social media who have their tight toned tummies 5 minutes after giving birth, and that’s awesome, but that wasn’t me and even if we do look amazing, there could still be a lot going on inside.

    Take the time to gradually and safely get back into exercise with our 6 top tips!

    Your 6 week check.

    Normally this is the first thing we as post-natal trainers ask – ‘have you had your 6 week check?’ Quickly followed by ‘What did they do/say?’ and it’s not uncommon for us to find out that they missed a lot. Only about 60% of my fitbuggies women has their split diastasis (abdominal separation) checked at their 6 week check. You need to know, what is your separation at? How many fingers? Is that all the way down or is it different for the top/bottom abdominals? Is it really deep? If you had stitches, did they check them? Are they healing ok? Do you have any residual epidural pain? (I did for quite a while). If your midwife/health visitor does not check any of this, you CAN ask them too. They are there to look after you as well as your baby. Also this will help us to ensure that the exercises you are doing are suitable for you.

    Not so fast!

    No pre and post-natal trainer will recommend running 10k’s and going to HIIT classes straight after giving birth. You gotta take it easy! Your body has been through a lot and there should be no pressure to lose your baby weight quickly. Start by walking with your baby in your pram for 20 minutes a day and build it up slowly. This will be a great foundation for when you move onto a planned workout.

    When you do progress your workouts remember that your body is still healing and recovering from pregnancy. I’m all for a getting hot and sweat in a workout and walking away from the gym all pumped, but make sure you do this safely. If you attend yoga and pilates classes, remember that you may still have the hormone ‘relaxin’ in your body which can cause the muscles to lengthen longer than usual and can lead to injuries, so stay in your normal range of motion. If you attend step, HIIT or an aerobic classes, make sure you take the lower impact options so that you don’t put any extra pressure on your pelvic floor until you are ready. Trust me on this…..which leads to my next tip of……

    Don’t pee yourself!!

    I didn’t do any pelvic floor exercises after my oldest was born and boy did I regret it. You can begin these straight away and they need no fancy fitness equipment. A great tip to ensure you practise them often is to set a reminder on your phone or even practice them randomly whilst watching X Factor.

    If you are struggling with incontinence, speak to a womens health physio on how to ensure you are performing the exercises correctly.

    Core blimey!

    Abdominal separation (split-diastasis) is very common post-pregnancy as your abdominals separate during pregnancy to allow your baby to grow. As a general rule, you should avoid any exercise that works your abdominals like planks, sit ups and crunches. As well as core exercises, you should avoid any exercise that makes your stomach ‘dome’ (creates a rise down the middle line of the stomach). There are lots of modifications that can be made to every exercise so take it down a notch until you can perform the exercise safely.

    Find a local post-natal class.

    There are so many benefits of joining a post-natal fitness class. Not only can you workout under the guidance of a post-natal fitness expert, you can also meet and socialise with other like-minded mums. As well as being a cheaper alternative to one-to-one personal training sessions, you can also save on childcare costs by bringing your baby with you.

    Speak to someone.

    I always say that it takes 9 months to create a baby, so it can take 9 months to recover, but if you are concerned that your post-natal recovery is not progressing as you would hope, speak to someone. We are not offered extra post-natal services as standard on the NHS so if you feel something is not right or is uncomfortable, speak to your medical professional and push for more. Post-natal trainers are qualified in training post-natal women however it is not uncommon us refer an individual to a medical professional such as a doctor or women’s health physic.

    Beginning in 2013, Bump2Baby Fitness has grown from strength to strength instructing thousands of women on their pre and post-natal exercise journeys. In 2017 we launched our first activewear collection, taking inspiration from the most popular trends and fit-mums across the globe.

    Check out the website for FREE pre and post-natal exercise guides, tips and advice.

    0330 55 55 828

  • Why should i read to my little one?

    6. December 2017

    Written by Holly Edlin, Head Teacher, Gymboree Play & Music St Albans

    Imagine for a moment you are in a foreign country. You are thirsty and go into a shop to get some water, but no one seems to understand your language, and your attempt at charades isn’t working either. This frustration is how a young child can feel when they are unable to communicate what they need with you. With this in mind, it is vital that we help our children to express themselves in order to fulfil their desires and ensure they grow up happy.

    There are an abundance of ways you can help your baby’s language development (including reading from an early age) varying as they grow and need further challenge. Here at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans, our age specific classes help your little one work on just that!

    Play and Learn Level One (0-6 months): Baby Play

    What is it?

    Baby play is where we sing to our little ones using a few simple signs every week. At Gymboree Play & Music St Albans we use BSL (British sign language) to sing and sign to our babies.

    How does it help my child learn?

    It may seem a little bizarre to sign to your child, especially as they are just learning to use their eyes. This is half the point however, as it will teach baby to learn how to use their eye and neck muscles, by allowing them to visually track your hands. The main aim of signing to babies is to help them develop a system for non-verbal communication. Remember the point about charades I made in the introduction? If the person in the shop had understood your gestures for water- you would have got what you needed. Baby Play lays the foundation for your baby to eventually be able to communicate easily with you before they can speak. It is also much easier to remember a word if you add a sign with it, therefore improving baby’s memory and both their receptive and expressive vocabulary. Your baby has been listening to your voice since before they were born, so singing to them whilst we do this activity is greatly comforting and encourages bonding.

    Play and Learn Level Two (6- 10 months): Baby Boogies

    What is it?

    As a warm up for our Level Two Play & Learn class, we combine popular nursery rhymes and Gymboree Play & Music songs with some simple actions to help with body awareness and memory as well as language.

    How does it help my child learn?

    Singing to your child is vital for language development. Not only are you showing them example of language by using it towards them, but you are doing it in a way that is varied and interesting for them to listen to. Children learn a lot through absorbing things in the world around them (unlike adults who need to be a bit more active when learning), and just by listening to the rhythm and pitch of a song, they learn how to structure a sentence. The dance moves develop their body awareness as well as socialising them as they look at other babies whilst they dance!

    Play and Learn Level Three (10-16 months): Airlog Push

    What is it?

    Practising their walking skills alongside each other, this activity works on a multitude of things, including language development.

    How does it help my child learn?

    Children of this age can communicate well with their favourite adults, but need a bit more encouragement to play with and gesture to other children. Partaking in the same activities next to each other (parallel play)- a vital step before they start to play co-operatively, and is vital to help them grow socially. We also sing a specific song as the children do the Airlog Push, which they begin to learn and associate with this activity.

    Play and Learn Level 4 (16-22 months): Bilateral Themes

    What is it?

    We take opposites, and repeat them throughout class whilst doing activities: teaching them the meaning of abstract concepts- but also teaching them how to say the word. For example ‘Fast and Slow’ might be used for several activities such as rolling a ball (fast and slow), walking (fast or slow), and tapping (fast and slow).

    How does it help my child learn?

    It is very easy to show your child a ball and tell them that it is a ball. But how do you teach them the meaning of and abstract word such as ‘under’? By pairing it with ‘over’ and showing them what both words mean, you make both words clearer to understand by using the obvious contrast. Repetition is key at this age, which is why we do it so much in this level. The more you repeat, the more they will begin to understand and then eventually repeat it back to you. Children need a lot of examples before they are even ready to begin to master anything themselves. We also change our words every two weeks, so they get plenty of time to begin to learn the words.

    Play and Learn Level 5 (22-28 months): Rainbow Rope

    What is it?

    Our Gymboree Play & Music opening ritual each week that takes the children through our movement core, followed by a colour recognition game.

    How does it help my child learn?

    Colours are very difficult for children to learn! They need lots of practise to tell the difference between shades and remember the words. Every week they will also be forced to recognise and say a different colour (unless of course, they have a favourite!) They are at the age now where they are pretty good at communicating, but they may not be confident in speaking outside of the home. This activity gets the children actively listening to others answers (another important skill) and speaking in front of a group of their peers.

    Play and Learn Level 6 (28- 55months): Open Ended Questions

    What is it?

    What did you do today? What did you eat for lunch? How did you get here? Then you have follow up questions too, all based around their lives and within recent memory so children are able to answer confidently – or make up a hilarious and imaginative answer!

    How does it help my child learn?

    It makes them think. It makes them use and strengthen their memory. They are now at the point where they can say all of these things and use proper sentences, but they still need loads of practise. This simple activity gives them that, whether they need a little prompting and correcting or not.

  • Gymboree Play & Music St Albans teams up with local clothing brand Tommy & Lottie

    10. November 2017

    Tommy and Lottie, owned by local mum Katie is an online, UK based baby boutique and lifestyle brand, specialising in modern, unisex baby clothing.

    From hareem pants to top knot hats; Katie has your little ones clothing needs sorted for a Gymboree Play & Music class with her movable, breathable clothing range.

    Katie also offers prints for all around the house with designs that appeal to both children and adults.

    Get 10% off and FREE UK delivery with the code fun when ordering online.


  • Receptive Vs Expressive learning in Music

    10. November 2017

    By Stephanie Gross, Director Gymboree Play & Music St Albans

    The first time you see your little one react to sound is mesmerising. Then the questions start: will they like rock music like daddy or pure 80’s like mummy? Where better to find out than a Gymboree Play & Music, music class!

    People often ask “how do you teach music to a baby when they can’t even talk yet?” Well, here’s your answermusic is the foundation of cognitive learning in babies. Singing regularly helps build your little one’s vocabulary, listening and concentration skills long before they actually understand it’s relevance.

    Receptive, meaning the ability to learn is compulsory for little ones to then become expressive; meaning the ability to communicate. If we think of our little ones as a sponge, they soak up all our love, attention and information and when they’re full it comes flowing out for you to see.

    For example: Our little ones may place a maraca in their mouth to begin with, realise it doesn’t fit or taste too nice before starting to explore the instrument in other ways. What a lovely feeling it is when they finally become expressive by clapping for the first time, banging on a drum, making a high-pitched sound or even starting to dance!

    Gymboree Play & Music’s receptive vs expressive concepts of music allow each child to Sing, Move, Listen, Play and Create freely throughout the class. These 5 key experiences outlined by M.E.N.C (Music Educator’s National Conference) are the hallmark of high quality, early childhood music programming. Gymboree Play & Music’s purpose is to nurture expressive musical skills by immersing little ones in the language of music.

    Let’s all try singing row your boat together- will your little one anticipate the ending and let out a scream? What about Twinkle Twinkle – is your little one in admiration listening to your voice or trying to get their fingers moving like yours?

    It may take time for your little ones to be expressive but it’s definitely worth the wait!


    Did you know most nursery rhymes start on a C note? That’s no coincidence! Not only does it help your little one indirectly understand pitch, rhythm and beat- it also offers them the opportunity to learn language and mathematical skills too.

    Did you know music is linked to memories and some children can recognise songs that were played to them while in the womb for up to the first year of their lives!

  • How to do Art in the Early Years, without Getting Messy!

    10. November 2017

    By Holly Edlin, Head Teacher at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans.

    As a child, as you were once too, I loved playing in mud, jumping in streams, drawing on walls and potato printing. Now that I am older I have fallen in love with the awe experienced by children as they create using new materials and medium they may have never experienced before. Art classes at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans are different because you get to experience that fun by their side, and not only are they learning but we as adults learn to understand how children use art to process, explore and experiment.

    Art is a great way to work on language development, and not just through the pre-writing skills of holding a crayon and scribbling. Asking open ended questions can lead to further perceptive and expressive thought whilst your child is thinking about their answers. Next time your child picks up a yellow pencil, change your question from ‘Are you going to draw a banana?’ to ‘What are you going to draw?’

    Gymboree Play & Music Art classes are primarily based on ‘The Habits of Mind’ Theory first described by Arthur Costa and Bena Kallick. Our Art philosophy is about focusing on the process of making visual art, through perception, reflection, expression and conception: where a child will be encouraged to be free and visit each process as and when they need. Our Art classes are all about each child having their own vision and creativity to explore, and every outcome being celebrated!

    A great way to show how you value their vision is by displaying it: no matter what it looks like! Praise is a hugely beneficial way to build confidence, not only in their art work but in real life too. Throughout a Gymboree Play & Music Art class I’m always congratulating each child and pointing out each other’s efforts too. As each child’s perception and conception will vary, each of their efforts must be valued and in showing how we as adults are embracing differences they are also learning an even bigger lesson.

    I understand the worry of doing art at home – no matter how much newspaper you put down, somehow sticky hand prints are going to end up on the cream upholstery. A Gymboree Play & Music Art class is a safe place for your child to get covered in shaving foam and green poster paint: we’ve got wipe-able floors and chairs, a bucket of water for emergencies and plenty of wet wipes to go around!

    Here are my top tips for attending for first Gymboree Play & Music Art class:

    • Don’t wear your new white jeans!
    • Dress your child in something old
    • Encourage and praise
    • Ask open ended questions about their work
    • Point out great things in other children’s art work to your child
    • Display your child’s art
    • Take a step back and see what they can do








Gymboree St Albans staff member

Steph always knew she wanted to work with children so became a qualified Montessori Teacher specialising in child development from birth – seven years. She also has a degree in Theatre Direction.

Steph started working at Gymboree Play & Music St Albans part-time in 2012 when it opened and can’t believe how far she has come in just a short few years! In 2013 Steph was voted Semi-Finalist for “What’s on 4 little ones” prestigious award ‘Most Outstanding Activity Leader for the under 5’s (South)’. Steph took over the Franchise in December 2016 and In 2018 Steph made it to the final three of EWIF (encouraging women into franchising) for “Young woman in franchising of the year“.

Steph is also a certified Infant Massage instructor under the IAIM (International association of infant massage) and offers 5-week courses on-site.

If you would like to contact steph directly please email her on



Play & Music Teacher/ Administrator


India studied and trained at Tring Park School for the Performing Arts and is pursuing a singing career, gigging frequently across London building a following to show off her original material.

India knew she loved working with children, applying her favourite joys in the world, singing, acting and dancing into her everyday life – Gymboree Play & Music St Albans was the perfect place!





Play & Music Teacher/ Administrator
Rachel is a classically trained musician (having learnt the flute from a young age and later on piano). She went on to study Musical Theatre at Edge Hill University, later realising she could combine her love of music with working with children and adults to help them discover the joys of music too.

From the age of 14 Rachel volunteered with local Rainbow and Brownie units so she could experience what it was like to run sessions for children, and is working on expanding her knowledge to include even younger years too.




Play & Learn Teacher/ Party Leader
Aniqa is currently training and is looking forward to teaching your little ones soon!


Our 5-week Sensory Art course will introduce your little one to all of the senses through a mixture homemade, edible, non-toxic and hypoallergenic products.


Our Sensory Art course is stress free for you and there’s NO clean up – plus, you even get to take home a pressed painting of your little ones creation’s each week.


Please contact us today to register your interest for the next course!
01727 831551


We offer a chance for 3 to 6 year old’s to develop confidence, self expression and concentration by using Drama, Singing, Dancing and Art.  Plus, you get to enjoy watching your child in regular live performances!











In both Key Stages 1 and 2 of the UK Schools’ National Curriculum, music, dance and drama are seen as a way to develop control, coordination, poise, expression of feelings, expression of moods, expression of ideas and response to music. Our Theatre Arts programme develops all of these important skills and in doing so promotes independence and school readiness.



01727 831551


Baby Massage in St Albans (IAIM)


We are passionate about the importance of touch and bonding with your baby and massage is a great way to introduce this to you both! Research shows that the first 1000 days of a child’s life are highly influential on their life-long mental health, and we want to help you along that crucial journey. Our Baby Massage course consists of 5 sessions each lasting 1 hour in our beautiful studio.

We invite babies (under 1 year) and their parents along to learn all about the importance of touch and hope you will use this course as an opportunity to bond with your baby whilst learning and practicing the different massage strokes with our fully qualified IAIM instructor Steph.



Thursday 3rd – 31st January 2019

2pm – 3pm


(Oils and handbook and refreshments included)


Please contact to reserve your space!

To learn more about Infant massage please follow this link!


St Albans baby massage

As the global leader in classes for children under 5, Gymboree has a wealth of expertise that we can bring to your nursery or pre-school. Choose from the classes listed below, or contact us to create a bespoke programme to suit your needs.

Play & Learn Sessions

Fun and high energy sessions featuring movement and physical activities and the use of music, props and select pieces of apparatus.

Level 1: Babies
Level 2:  Toddlers
Level 3:  Pre-schoolers

Music & Dance Sessions

Musical expression made fun with exciting sessions filled with song, dance and hands-on instrument exploration.

Level 1: Toddlers
Level 2: Pre-schoolers

Art Sessions

Theme-based, mixed-media art sessions featuring collage, sculpture, painting, drawing and much more.  Children take home two masterpieces from each Art session!

Level 1:  18 months to 2½  years
Level 2:  2 ½ -4 years

St Albans On The Go Brochure

For more information or to book a demonstration at your setting please call us on 01727 831551 or email

Here are just a few of the wonderful things people say about Gymboree St Albans!

“Lots of energy and very good at engaging with each child”.

“My son has enjoyed his 3 years at Gymboree and it has been lovely to see him develop into an active child with a vivid imagination. He shares what he has been doing at Gymboree with his Dad at home and often role plays based upon the activities in the classes. Now he is ready to move on as he begins school in September”.

“The staff are amazing – Holly is so enthusiastic and a real credit to the team”.

“We held our daughter’s birthday party there and it was an absolute pleasure. The staff were amazing, great fun, and the children really enjoyed themselves. Our daughter was made to feel very special and she loved every minute especially because she was a member of Gymboree St Albans since she was a baby. Steph and her team of Kelsey and Niamh are fantastic!”

“The classes are really well led and I can see my child developing through them. I would want to give particular mention to the energy and enthusiasm provided by Steph and Holly who led most of the classes we attend. They have been excellent and my daughter responds to them both as they are so engaging”. 

Review us here


Come along to Gymboree Play & Music St Albans this year and join us in celebrating 40 years of Gymboree Play & Music!

Gymboree: 40 Years Young & Still Having Fun!

December 2018


Christmas is FAST approaching and Gymbo the clown is VERY excited!

Date for your diaries, Christmas party Friday 14th December 4:15-5:30pm!

Tickets go on sale Monday 19th November.

Ticket’s are £5/7 (twin/sibling) each child will receive a present from father Christmas :)

November 2018

On Thursday 8th November Steph and Gymbo have been invited to the time capsule burial at the old museum site next door to us! We even have Gymbo the clown going down, down, down into the capsule for some lucky little ones to find in years to come! Keep an eye on our social media pages from 2pm to watch the whole thing!

St Albans Time Capsule


October 2018


Thank you to all who attended our Halloween Party, we had a fantastic time and raised £255.85 for the Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity. If you would like to donate more, or didnt have the chance to please click here: Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity

If you are looking for photos from the party, please follow this link to view and purchase, password protected “Gymboree”  CC Photography

If you are looking to purchase a book from Little Hand’s Turning Pages please follow this link to do so

See you all again next year :)

May 2018


We were very lucky to be supporting our partners Piccolo on their roadshow at Tesco Hatfield!


A big congratulations to our franchisee Steph for making it into the final three of the EWIF awards 2018 “young franchisee of 2018”


2017 Fundraising total

Thank you to everyone who helped us raise money for some fantastic charities in 2017.

Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity £1,089.11

Save the children £323.88

GOSH £271.89

If you would like Gymboree Play & Music St Albans to help you raise money for your chosen charity please get in touch!


All your questions answered here!

What is ‘Play and Learn’?

Play and Learn is Gymboree’s signature, equipment-focused, physical and cognitive, child development programme; offering a wide range of classes for little ones aged 0 – 5 years. Each class is structured and teacher-led, with themes designed to support the growth of children throughout those early developmental stages.

Each theme is developmentally appropriate according to that age group, with each class an exciting fun-filled adventure, and all of this with the help of our amazing purpose-built equipment and props. Fun to be had by all!

How does membership work?

Everyone is entitled to one free trial, to see how you get on in the session and whether its right for you and your little one – There is absolutely no obligation to then join a class after.

Should you wish to join us after your free trial, you will be asked to sign our Gymboree agreement which states that we ask you to sign up for a minimum of 2 months, with a 1 month cancellation policy; notifying us of your request to cancel your membership in writing.

How do I pay for classes?

Gymboree Play & Music St Albans works on a monthly direct debit as we are open all year round!

Membership is on a rolling contract of either £35.50 for Sensory Baby Play class or £41.50 for Play and Learn – Levels 2 to 6, Art and Music. This allows you one teacher-led class per week and unlimited access to Open Gym sessions, which are completely free of charge. We offer lots of discounts for siblings, multiple classes and weekend memberships so please do get in touch if you have any further questions regarding pricing.

Do you offer Pay As You Go?

Unfortunately not, access to classes and our free play, Open Gym sessions is by membership only, which is on a monthly rolling contract, by direct debit.

What is a ‘Freeze’ of membership?

A freeze of membership allows you to take a break from Gymboree for any amount of time. With one month’s notice a freeze of membership suspends your payments and classes until you are ready to come back.

What is a ‘Makeup’ Class’?

When your little one has missed a class you are entitled to book a makeup class; this class can be booked into any class (age appropriate) with space. You have four weeks to book in this makeup class or it becomes void.

Do you offer any discounts?

Yes, we offer a number of discounts for twins/siblings and second or third classes – please check our timetable or call us on 01727 831551 for more information.

What is Open Gym?

As members, you will have unlimited access to Open Gym sessions at various times throughout each week; allowing you free play with the use of our specialised props and patented apparatus. There is no obligation to attend these sessions nor is there any extra charge, should you attend. Its an added bonus to being a member with us – You can do as many or as little as you wish, every week.

Do you have parking?

Unfortunately not however, if travelling by car there are a few parking spaces on Upper Marlborough Road which are free for 1 hour between 10am and 4pm. Alternatively there is also pay & display parking on Bricket Road, Clifton Street and Essex Street. All of these are round the corner from Gymboree and no more than a one minute walk away.

Why do i need socks but my child is bare foot?

We kindly ask that adults are in socks during classes for hygiene reasons, we then ask that children have bare feet due to health and safety.

What do I do with my buggy?

We have lots of space inside for buggies and an over flow buggy park just outside our front door, although If you can collapse your buggy or leave it at home/ in the car that would be greatly appreciated!

What do I need to do if I want to book a free trial?

There lots of ways to get in touch with us!

You can fill out a form at the top of this page, you can call us on 01727 831551 or drop us an email you can even pop in and say hello!


If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to contact us



All By Mama

all by mama

Gymboree Play & Music UK are now partnered with the fantastic All By Mama! Get 10% off your order at the checkout with the code: Gymboree

Happy Shopping!



Sleep Time Baby

sleep time babyKate, proud Mum to Lyla and Sam had big problems with both of their sleeping! As a certified sleep consultant Kate is here to help families with sleep issues for children of all ages.

If you feel like you need any help or just want to chat through it, give Kate a call for a FREE 15-minute telephone consultation.

Call on 07748677908 or e-mail



Carli, a local St Albans mum is a qualified “master of photographers” the first in Hertfordshire and third in the UK which means shes the perfect person to ensure your babies are in safe hands!

Book a birthday party with us and receive a discount on a 1st Birthday session with Carli at her incredible studio!

Contact Carli today Bailie & Belle Photography



Tommy & Lottie

tommy & lottie

Tommy and Lottie, owned by local mum Katie is an online, UK based baby boutique and lifestyle brand, specialising in modern, unisex baby clothing.

Get 10% off and FREE UK delivery with the code fun when ordering online.