Seattle offers a wealth of opportunities for children who are searching for enjoyable, exciting (and even educational) after-school activities. These camps, classes and studios feature some of the best options to inspire and encourage children’s active minds. Learn about music and dance at Illumination Learning Studio; gain art skills and confidence at Thrive Art Studio; learn the joys of dancing at American Dance Institute; swim like a fish at Safe N Sound Swimming; and learn the basics of horsemanship at Deerfield Farm. Whether your child is a budding artist, musician or athlete, there’s an after-school activity that’s sure to delight them.

Illumination Learning Studio
7720 Greenwood Ave. N., Suite. 101
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 466-1931

If you’re looking for an after-school venue that fosters creativity, independence and interactive learning, Illumination Learning Studio is the place for you. Conveniently located in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood, Illumination Learning Studio supports the musical and artistic development of children ages 5-11. The studio’s after-school classes are Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. The cost to attend is $310 per month with an additional fee of $20 for materials. Illumination also offers classes in dance, private voice and acting lessons and private piano lessons, as well as summer camps and a half-day preschool. 

Thrive Art Studio 
6329 Ravenna Ave. N.E. 
Seattle, WA 98115
(206) 522-1659

Do you have a budding Picasso, Monet or Van Gogh in your home? The aptly-named Thrive Art Studio nurtures young artists in a supportive, creative environment that instills a sense of confidence and accomplishment in young artists. Thrive offers classes for artists of all ages and abilities and skilled teachers work to help students build their artistic skills. The art school, which provides two convenient locations in the Ravenna and Madison neighborhoods of Seattle, features classes such as “I’m an artist,” discover art, art confidence and mastering art. Times, class offerings and prices vary; please consult Thrive’s online schedule for more information. 

American Dance Institute 
8001 Greenwood Ave. N. 
Seattle, WA 98103 
(206) 783-0755

If your child is a budding Ginger Rogers or Fred Astaire, the American Dance Institute is the perfect place to spend those after-school hours. The American Dance Institute has been helping aspiring dancers for more than a quarter of a century. The school offers classes in tap, ballet, hip hop, break dancing, contemporary dance, Irish dance, flamenco and Irish step dancing. American Dance Institute offers classes for children, teenagers and adults; to see which classes are available, visit the school’s classes page here

Safe N Sound Swimming 
2040 Westlake Ave. N. 
Seattle, WA 98109 
(206) 285-9279

Safe N Sound Swimming has provided educational, enjoyable swimming instruction for swimmers of all ages and experience levels since 1986. The center’s after-school program partners with local schools and includes van transportation, supervised free swim, arts and crafts, a light snack, homework assistance and games. Private swim lessons are also offered for an additional fee. The camp runs from school dismissal time until 6 p.m. and costs $99 per month for one day a week or $198 a month for two days per week. Membership is required to participate at the center, and costs $50 per child or $100 per family. 

Deerfield Farm
11432 Upper Preston Road S.E.
Issaquah, WA 98027
(425) 222-7639

Located just east of Seattle in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, Deerfield pairs country atmosphere with a convenient location. Deerfield has provided horseback lessons for riders of all ages for more than four decades and specializes in Western, equitation, hunt seat and dressage. Space is limited, but lessons are available Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Lessons are $65 for a 45-minute private lesson and $65 for a one-hour semi-private lesson. Deerfield also offers Seattle Young Riders Academy Overnights (YRAO), which are enjoyable educational events to ride, learn and explore basic horsemanship. 

Tracy Campion is a freelance writer covering all things Seattle. Her work can be found on