There has been a lot of changes in the home as distance learning has become the norm these past seven (and counting!) weeks. In addition to school, traditional in-person classes and after school programs have also pivoted their business models, offering classes via social media and Zoom, such as Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC.
A few weeks ago, my daughter and I took one of their Superhero Zoom class where we had the best time enjoying an interactive and fun movement class. After the movement portion, we made a spider web (in celebration of theme of Spiderweb) using some simple supplies that we had around the house. This class was a part of their new PAENYC Online Academy where you can also find fun offerings like Zumba Kids, Yoga, Acting, Art, Storytime, and more. To learn more about their programming and what makes them different, we had the chance to chat with owners Andrew and April Hovelson, who shared more about the school and what makes Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC special.
Interview with Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC
Weekend Jaunts: How did the idea for Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC come about?
Andrew and April Hovelson: Our owner, April, has been an educator and teacher for over 20 years. Her husband and co-owner, Andrew, is a successful stage and screen actor whose first “survival job” was as a chess instructor for Parker-Anderson Enrichment Los Angeles, the flagship location. As parents of three crazy, energetic, amazing boys, when the opportunity arose to own and operate Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC, Andrew and April jumped at the chance.
Over the past five years we have had the good fortune to impact the lives of over 5,000 students while working with more than 50 public, private, and charter schools across the city. Our motto has always been “Fun Comes First.” We love teaching, we love kids, and we love serving families with the highest quality after-school and online enrichment courses with the widest array of curriculums across New York.
Weekend Jaunts: How have you had to pivot your business during this time?
As we anticipated eventual school closures, we began testing classes we thought would be successful in an online, live, interactive format and could be easily taken in your own living room!
We launched PAENYC Online Academy the last week of March with donation-based classes because it was incredibly important to us for children in all economic situations to be able take classes, while allowing parents to show their support financially through a donation if they could! Response has been overwhelmingly positive, but we would be lying if we didn’t say that it has been a challenge growing a business to consumer client and email list from scratch. The opportunity to digitally teach students all over the New York area is a huge need to be filled right now, and we want to fill that need for every family we can. We sincerely feel we can help out. We love what we do, we love our New York community, and we would love to be able to reach more families. Donations are always a huge help! Every child is welcome and we’d love to see you in class with us!
Weekend Jaunts: What kind of classes do you offer?
Andrew and April Hovelson: We offer STEM, Arts, Sports, and Specialty Classes. Superhero Academy and ASL 4Kidz are huge hits!
img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-15991″ src=”https://theweekendjaunts.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/parker-anderson-enrichment-new-york-scaled.jpeg” alt=”Get to Know About Parker-Anderson Enrichment NYC” width=”2560″ height=”1920″ />
Weekend Jaunts: How are you different from what’s out there?
Andrew and April Hovelson: Our PAENYC Online Academy stands out because we are committed to keeping our classes live, interactive, and fun! There is currently a flood of online instruction, but most of them just don’t cut it.
Kids just tune in to a YouTube video, or turn on a Facebook live event – they don’t feel engaged or part of a classroom. We have solved that! Our courses are live through password protected Zoom calls, and we have worked tirelessly to find ways to “reach through the screen” and interact with each student to keep them engaged and entertained while the parents get a 45 min-1 hour break!
Most importantly, our instructors rock! As parents and educators themselves, April and Andrew have huge hearts, a true passion for kids and take great care to find the most passionate instructors in NYC.
Weekend Jaunts: Anything else to add?
Andrew and April Hovelson: We hope to be back in schools as usual across New York this fall, but we would really love to see more kids in our weekly PAENYC Online Academy! We are quarantine created, kid tested, and parent approved! Try out a class, donate (if you can), and please tell your friends! It keeps our computers charged and energy high until schools are back in session!