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Kidsburgh: Snapology combines STEM learning with social skills

Kidsburgh: Snapology combines STEM learning with social skills
Kidsburgh: Snapology combines STEM learning with social skills 02:49

BRIDGEVILLE, Pa. (KDKA) — Parents know it can be harder to find extracurricular activities for kids outside of sports. 

That's why one local mom decided to start her own program. Thirteen years later, there are now almost 200 franchises of Snapology.

Kids love building things, and at Snapology, there are so many ways to build. There are LEGOs, of course, but there are also funky-shaped wooden blocks, extra-large soft blocks, spokes and wheels and other shapes and even a glow-in-the-dark room.

Nate Coe, who's 12 years old and has taken many classes at Snapology, says, "You can build your own figures. You can build what you want. I want to try to build a skyscraper with blocks."

It's all about creating, making mistakes, learning from them and starting again. Sammy Smith is 8 and loves to build at Snapology. 

"Sometimes if I'm just playing around, I'll destroy it," he says with a laugh. "Basically, just having fun."

Laura Coe of South Fayette founded Snapology with her sister 13 years ago to offer programs for kids incorporating academic enrichment with social skills, all while having fun.

"It was important that my son not just get those academic skills, which he was kind of naturally good with, but it was important to kind of blend them with having a good time and socializing with his friends and really getting that social interaction," Coe said.

Snapology does that through games and teamwork. The kids are proof it works. Kelen Yohe and Smith became friends through a game of tag at Snapology.

"He tagged me. ... And then we made friends, and now we work together every day," Yohe explained.

One of the goals of Snapology is to allow all kids to play and have fun, regardless of their age or ability.

"We've had mental health therapists and other folks involved in the design of the program to make sure that any child, regardless of what their background is or what their extreme needs may be, even gifted children, can all be in the same classroom and be a success," Coe said.

Coe also wants Snapology to help give parents a break, offering after-school classes, day-long summer camps and evenings when parents can drop off kids and go out.

With almost 200 locations in 13 countries, it's clear kids everywhere love building and creating not only tangible things but friendships.

"You can make lots of new friends. I can say I have many, many friends here," Coe said.

To see more about Snapology's classes and their summer camps that are open for enrollment go here. For Kidsburgh's full guide to summer camps, go here.

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