After Isis Parenting: baby classes & more in Boston
It’s been a bit over two years since Isis Parenting suddenly closed their doors, leaving parents and businesses in Boston, Georgia, and Texas scrambling to fill in the gap. Isis was a legendary support system for pregnant moms and new parents: as Dawn Murray of Hingham told the Boston Globe, “I took a childbirth class there. I took a breast-feeding class. I took infant CPR, toddler CPR. When I was pregnant my doctor was like, go to Isis to take delivery classes. When I was at the hospital, they said if you have any breast-feeding issues, call the lactation consultants at Isis.”
Even though we were direct competitors on the retail level, there was no getting around referring customers to Isis for baby classes: they provided priceless support and info about birth, baby care, breastfeeding, sleep, and more, in person and online. Plus, classes at Isis provided new moms with ready-made groups of mommy friends, who are essential for your sanity and quality of life, but not always easy to find!
The team behind Isis is still around and still offering terrific help for families in Boston and around the US. So today, I did some research to find out: where are they now? These are only a few of the incredibly talented folks who taught there, and only a few of their great current projects.
Cecilia Matson, M.A.
After the untimely end of Isis, Cecilia bounced back fast, and we’re delighted to be working quite closely with her: her Galoop child developmental classes are held on Fridays at Magic Beans Brookline! (Galoop classes on other weekdays are at the United Parish in Brookline, right down the street.) Galoop classes are for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, with a great balance of exploration, structure, and bonding. There’s always time built into the class session for you to ask questions – with over 20 years of experience working with young children and families, Cecilia has tons of great advice. Plus, she’s written some great columns for us right here at Spilling the Beans!
Sign up now for upcoming Galoop sessions!
Nancy Holtzman RN IBCLC
Even before she co-founded Isis, Nancy was a legend among Boston-area parents: Magic Beans co-founder Sheri Gurock brought her first child to Nancy’s Great Beginnings classes held in someone’s home in West Roxbury. Sheri writes:
“Nancy Holtzman wasn’t just anyone though. She was a lifeline. Her Great Beginnings group was life changing. I learned how to swaddle, I learned how to wear my baby in a sling, I learned how to massage my baby, and I learned that I was doing just fine. All the confidence I had in myself as a mother those first few months came from Nancy. It was no small thing.”
Although Nancy doesn’t appear to be running baby classes at the moment, you can still tap into that wonderful confidence boost with her lactation and parenting consults, available for families in Boston or San Francisco. I love how reassuring and understanding she is even on her business webpage: she makes sure to let you know that you really, really don’t need to clean up the house or get dressed up for her visit. Because with a new baby to care for, who has time to think about these things?
Jennifer T. Gillette
After almost a decade leading developmental play and parenting groups at Isis, Jennifer launched The Loved Child: Expert Support and Programming for Families with Young Children. Located in Belmont, TLC offers Developmental Play & Parenting classes, New Parenting & Infant Development classes, and Music & Movement classes, some of which are taught by other former Isis instructors.
Along with baby classes at The Loved Child, Nancy is running early parenting groups and childbirth education classes, well… pretty much everywhere! You can see a list at her website here. She also released a CD, “Circle Time Songs With Nancy G.”
Norwell families, come see Ms. Bethany at the South Shore Learning Lab and Marshfield Recreation! Her classes include a Child Development session, an art class for toddlers, and a Music Makers class for ages 6 months – 4 years. See more here.
Rachel is a Facilitator and Instructor at Mama and Me, and is a dedicated postpartum doula. She specializes in support for LGBTQ parents.
In addition to her expertise as a child development instructor, Claire is an accomplished (and very funny) writer, with contributions at Babble and Rants from Mommyland, among many other sites. She’s currently directing her attention to the Pregnant Chicken blog, dedicated to “Keeping pregnancy sunny side up.”
After wearing many hats at Isis (as Program Manager for Sleep Support, Fitness, and Safety), Teresa is still providing a wide range of help for families – you can hire her for sleep consultations, and she also runs sleep workshops, safety workshops, and trainings for healthcare providers.
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