8 new activities for kids on Long Island

From the left, 6-year old Brenna Walsh of

From the left, 6-year old Brenna Walsh of Oyster Bay, 6-year old Kyle Danzig of Jericho, 9-year old James Rampi of Woodbury, 6-year old Lucas Rampi of Woodbury and 6-year old Sarah Byne of East Norwich, play with fun foam, a combination of shaving creme and food coloring during Crazy Concoctions at Not Just for Art in Oyster Bay. (Jan. 2, 2013) (Credit: Heather Walsh)

If your child has been in the same gymnastics class for the past three years, it may be time to search out new activities. If you can't think of anything that may appeal, let these ideas -- from dancing Zumba to improv acting -- offer inspiration.

If your child typically loves swimming, try SCUBA DIVING

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT Swimmers can see the world under the sea with a junior open water certification. They'll have 12 hours of practical instruction in the pool, four certification dives in an open water environment and about six hours of out-of-the-water homework.


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AGES 10 and older

PLACE TO TRY Long Island Scuba, 895 Wellwood Ave., Lindenhurst, 631-225-8450, longislandscuba.com

If your child typically loves making a mess, try CRAZY CONCOCTIONS

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT This is a mess for a purpose. Kids get to dig in and make their own paint, clay and even slime in this fun, silly class that lets them get dirty while learning about fun combos that create messy art materials.

AGES 5-7

PLACE TO TRY Not Just Art, 183 South St., Oyster Bay, 516-922-8300, notjustart.com

If your child typically loves math, try COOKING CLASSES

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT Learn how to measure and follow recipes -- both of which teach math skills, including fractions and multiplication. Bonus: Learn a little about history and culture, too, with recipes from all over the world.

AGES 2-15

PLACE TO TRY What's Cooking, 30 E. Main St., Oyster Bay, 516-922-2665, whatscookingny.com

If your child typically loves martial arts, try FIT FUSION

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT It's all about fun fitness challenges using video games, health trivia, competitions and interactive dance stations. They'll even get to play a high-tech game of Red Rover. Instead of colored belts, kids earn colored bands here, so everyone will know their fitness rank.

AGES 5-15

PLACE TO TRY Fit Fusion, 67 W. Main St., Oyster Bay, 516-802-3088, fitfusioninteractive.com

If your child typically loves ballet, try ZUMBA

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT The hot dance craze is a high-energy class that's been re-created specifically for kids. They'll learn fitness dances and get moving to traditional Zumba songs in addition to kiddie versions, such as "Waka Waka" by Shakira.

AGES 4-12

PLACE TO TRY Tropix Dance & Fitnezz Studio, 608 Merrick Rd., Lynbrook, 516-599-3214, tropixdancestudio.com

If your child typically loves piano lessons, try GUITAR

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT Most kids move from piano lessons to violin or trumpet or another orchestral instrument -- but if they listen to rock, grunge or alternative instead of classical music, they may benefit more from guitar lessons. They will learn scales, music theory and songwriting via classic rock, alternative, pop, grunge and blues.

AGES Any age

PLACE TO TRY Long Island School of Guitar, 1521 Ocean Ave., Bohemia, 631-778-8056, longislandschoolofguitar.com

If your child typically loves acting, try IMPROV

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT It's spontaneous acting, and they will learn to be more natural and creative onstage by playing theater games, learning about movement and discovering more about their creative acting style.

AGES 9-16

PLACE TO TRY Merrick Theatre and Center for the Arts, 2222 Hewlett Ave., Merrick, 516-868-6400, merricktheatreandcenterforthearts.com

If your child typically loves puzzles, try CHESS

WHY IT'S A PERFECT FIT Chess is essentially a huge puzzle -- and in fact, classes teach strategy and puzzle solving. They will get to play against peers at similar levels, in addition to learning chess tactics and strategy.

AGES 5 and up

PLACE TO TRY Chess Nuts, multiple locations throughout Long Island, 516-739-3907, chessnuts.org

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