Getting Arty at Gymboree Art in Bristol

In today’s post, my family and I venture outside of Bishopston and into nearby Westbury on Trym, where we get arty at a Gymboree Art class. 

Bristol Gymboree – held at Northcote Hall – offers a variety of classes for babies and children 0-4 years of age. Other classes include ‘Play and Learn’ which involves music, singing and dancing and ‘Baby Sensory’ which includes music, lights and parachutes. 

Gymboree opens before each class for ‘Free Play’ where kids can get active in it’s soft play area and generally work off surplus energy before the class begins. My kids loved getting their teeth into everything…

Gymboree’s soft play facilities are more interesting than some soft play venues as there are apparatus such as beams which makes it a little more challenging and exciting for kids. Northcote Hall itself is a nice environment: spacious, clean and light.


When it was time for the Art class to begin, we all sat in a circle. Today’s Gymboree Art class was organised by Cath and Anita who were friendly and enthusiastic and knew everyone’s name.

Today’s task was to make a picture frame. This was a structured task and was broken down into a step-by-step approach. Both Cath and Anita made sure everyone was involved and engaged.


The class was appropriate for the range of ages there, since within each step of creating the picture frame, each child could do as much as they were able to. For example, one of the tasks was to draw round their hands and each child required a varying amount of help depending on their age and ability. 

Kids were able to get down and dirty with the many paints and materials and they fully relished the opportunity to get stuck in and explore colours and textures. My daughter loved the Gymboree art class and followed all the instructions. She was in her arty crafty element.


Unfortunately, my son was the only child who didn’t want to join in with today’s art class, despite Cath and Anita’s best efforts. He is not interested in art at the best of times and would much rather be moving and climbing something. This lack of interest, coupled with the lure of the soft play facilities meant he didn’t really want to engage, which was a little embarrassing. Luckily Cath and Anita didn’t seem to mind, they were patient and easy-going throughout.


By the end of the class, my daughter had produced a fabulous looking picture frame. My son also produced an impressive looking picture frame (though I must say I deserve some of the credit there!).

The Saturday class had more dads than you would normally get on a weekday which was nice for my husband who came along to today’s session.

Gymboree offer free trials so you can go along and have a taste of what each class involves. Bristol Gymboree also offers a ‘Saturday Play Pass’ where you have a pass for six Saturday classes to use within a three-month period, thus allowing flexibility for busy families.

If your child likes arts and crafts, then a Gymboree Art class is for them. Today’s picture frame task was interesting, there were a wide range of materials and much patience and enthusiasm from Cath and Anita. 

This class wasn’t really my son’s ‘thing’ but this had nothing to do with the teachers or class itself; he would probably far better enjoy one of Gymboree’s Play and Learn classes. 

Where my daughter was concerned, however, Gymboree Art was right up her arty-crafty street 🙂

If you would like to book a free trial with Gymboree, email bristol@gymboree-uk.com / phone 07865 420 692. For more information about Gymboree classes, visit Gymboree’s website.

Disclosure: My children enjoyed today’s session at Gymboree free of charge.

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