Getting your kids ready for their first day of school is hard enough without having to worry about what they will be doing after school lets out. Finding a safe, fun and affordable option for after school care can be a huge hurdle. Rather than wasting your time looking for potentially costly after-school classes and lessons, here’s a list of free after-school programs in Queens NY. We recommend planning ahead for these programs as they usually fill up fast.
Free Afterschool Programs at the Queens Library
Most Queens libraries offer a free afterschool program called BOOST (Best-Out-of-School Time). There’s no need to register just locate your local library and send your kid (with a snack). Best thing about this program is it’s probably right in your community, and your child will more than likely be around adults and other children they already know.
In addition, children are helped with homework, mentored and able to utilize the computers and reading materials. The program is geared toward kids 6 to 14 years old and operates from 3pm to 6 pm. However, if you are not comfortable, or feel your kid is just not ready, to get from their school to the library and then home, you may want to think twice before using this option.
Free Afterschool Programs at the Queens YMCA
The Queens YMCA offers its Y Afterschool program at its Cross Island, Ridgewood, Jamaica, Flushing and Long Island City locations. It’s free, they provide snacks and activities, and they usually have trained staff who’ve been with the program for awhile. The program runs from 3pm to 6pm, and some of the sites do offer transportation.
The only cons I see to this free program are that it is often overcrowded because it is free and usually they run a decent program. The sites can have as many as 500 kids, so make sure your little one doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. Click here for more info.
Free Afterschool Programs at the Action Center for Education and Community Development
If you live in Far Rockaway you may want to check out the Action Center for Education and Community Development’s Out-of-School Time program. It’s located on Beach Street in the area. This program offers a lot of activities including dance, fencing and comic book making, as well as the usual snack and homework help. Con; it’s only located in Far Rockaway and doesn’t offer transportation from other communities. You can register for the program online, and there are two locations in Far Rockaway that offer transportation from local schools. You can also call 718.337.5040 for more info.
Free Afterschool Classes at the SASF
Woodside-based Sports & Arts in Schools Foundation (SASF) Champions Club Afterschool Program is another program that has lots of locations in Queens NY, Whitestone, Jackson Heights, Astoria and Corona to name a few. The program encourages students to get involved in either a sports or art instructions lesson, and also provides snacks and occasional field trips. The programs are extremely diverse, and your kid will probably meet children from other schools and backgrounds. The only con to this program is that it is city-funded so recent budget cuts have really affected what the program can offer, but it is still FREE. To learn more visit their site, or call 718.786.7110
Free Afterschool Programs in Queens NYC Parks
I really had no idea before writing this that there are this many free afterschool programs in NYC. Parks After School is NYC’s recreational afterschool program. It’s offered in local community centers, specifically ones in close proximity to parks. Locations include Astoria, Rego Park, Flushing and Jamaica.
The programs usually operate from 3 to 6, some provide transportation from local schools and some do not. The best thing about this program is the access to other activities your kid may get from being involved. Some of the programs are designed with the “Turn 2” program which teaches drug and substance abuse awareness courses. The centers offer everything from Saturday drop-off services, to Family Game Nights and Quilting classes. Registration begins August 16th, and it’s free so hurry.
Free Afterschool Tennis in Queens NY
Lastly, if you have a Lil Venus or Serena in the making you may want to consider the New York Junior Tennis Leagues free Aces Afterschool Program. The program offers the usual programming, but also gives free tennis lessons. If you’re already enrolled, it probably gives you a better chance of getting into the free summer program which is extremely limited. This program has several locations in NYC; one of the Queens locations is Woodside.
For more information and to find more Queens locations, contact Sebastian Rodriguez at 347-417-8135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More Afterschool Links at Queens Mamas:
Queens Mamas Directory