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Local Teacher, The Zoo to Debut Literacy-Based Children's Exercise Program

Register now for Kids and Calves, which starts in early December.

Jessie Renaud and Hobson.
Jessie Renaud and Hobson.

When Jessie Renaud shared her idea for a literacy-based children’s fitness program with The Zoo Health Club in Simsbury she received a pleasant surprise.

She had hoped for support and feedback but the club’s owners were immediately eager to implement the program.

So beginning in early December, Renaud, a master teacher a Apple Tree Children’s Center in Avon, will begin instructing "Kids and Calves" at The Zoo. It will take place on Wednesday and Saturday mornings. 

Zoo owner John Evans is excited about the program. It will begin with a children’s story involving animals, followed by a dance and song. The kids will then exercise, mimicking the movements in the story, participate in a group game and cool down with stretches and yoga poses. 

It’s a fun package but children ages 2 to 5 will actually learn life skills such as movement and good nutrition from Miss Jessie, he said.

“They’re basically going to learn about a healthy lifestyle,” Evans said. 

The program is part of Renaud’s application to the Terri Lynne Lokoff/TYLENOL National Child Care Teacher Award, for which her manager encouraged her to apply.

She initially considered a yoga program for toddlers but realized that had been done quite a bit.

"I wanted to make something that was unique and original,” said Renaud, who grew up in Simsbury, where she lives with her husband and daughter. 

The program will run from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. (a change since the flyer shows) on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Maximum size for each class in the 8-week sessions is 10 but more times will be added if needed, Evans said.

Wednesday sessions start Dec. 4 and Saturday on Dec. 7. Parents can sign up kids for both days and the material differs for each session, Evans said. The program will also run subsequent sessions, he added. 

Prices vary depending on membership and non-members can also register their children.

The Zoo will also continue to run its Kids Club Program for kids age 6 to 12 at noon on Saturday and Sundays. 

For more information stop at the Zoo at 530 Bushy Hill Road in Simsbury Commons, call (860) 651-3937 or email john@zoogymsimsbury.com. 

Follow the Zoo at https://www.facebook.com/ZooGymSimsbury

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