Classes – Fall 2023

Community Education @ DMPS provides a variety of extracurricular learning opportunities for students in Des Moines. Learn more about our current offerings.

NOTE: to register for any of the classes listed below, please click here.

Spanish Club (K-5th grade)
Thursday afternoons 4:30-5:30PM @ Garton ES
September 28 – November 2
This class will introduce students to listening, speaking, and reading Spanish. The instructor is a former DMPS staff member with 10 years of language learning and teaching experience in the U.S. and Latin America. Through games and interactive activities, the curriculum is designed to enhance learning through play and cultural awareness. Meets Thursday afternoons from 4:30-5:30 pm at Garton ES.

Do the Math (K-5th grade)
Wednesday afternoons 3:00-4:00PM @ Perkins ES
September 20 – October 25
Do the Math 247 is a club with a positive message on respect, unity, and equality. The program will cover the following topics: Respect, responsibility, leadership, peer pressure, teamwork, and anti-bullying. Students will understand the importance of having a good character as a foundation to build on. Do the Math is for elementary students and will meet on the following Wednesdays: 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, and 10/25.
Instructor Information: Kenny Lilly ( 949-929-2893

DSM Breakers Breakdancing Class (2-8th grade)
Monday afternoons @Perkins ES 2:45-3:45PM (2-5th grade), 4:00-5:00 (6-8th grade)
September 11 – October 30 (there will be no classes held September 25th and October 16th)
Dynamic breakdancing class that teaches the following elements of top rock, go fiend, footwork, freezes, transitions, power moves, and tricks & flips.
Important: Please sign up for the correct age group. ES students will not be allowed in the MS class and vice-versa. The Breakerz requires all student participants to wear regular tennis shoes and bring long pants for class each week.
Elementary –
Middle School –

The Soaring Hawks After School Program (ES – Grade levels vary) takes place at Hanawalt Elementary School. Please see all the club offerings below. Please limit enrollment to one club. Registration opens August 22nd at 9AM.

Zoo Academy (1st – 3rd grade)
Sunday afternoons 2:00-3:00PM @ Blank Park Zoo
October 15 – November 19
Connect with nature and the zoo through authentic STEM experiences and career explorations. The Blank Park Zoo is open until 4:00 pm, program participant are allowed and encouraged to explore the zoo after each program.

Hy-Vee’s Kids Fit in the Kitchen Cooking Class (Grades K – 5)
Wednesday afternoons 3:00-4:00PM @ King ES
September 20th – October 25
Kids Fit in the Kitchen (w/Hy-Vee Dieticians) presentation/cooking class style focusing on teaching students how to make simple, healthy, and fun after school snacks with little equipment and low-cost groceries. Parents are encouraged to attend with their child(ren).

Dodgeball! (3rd-5th grade)
Tuesday afternoons 3:00-4:00PM @Garton ES
September 26 – October 31
Dodge, duck, and dip AFTER THE BELL! Come get some exercise and play several different variations of dodgeball. We use Rhino skin balls, so they are safe and don’t hurt! Invite your friends.

Dodgeball will be held on Tuesdays in the Garton ES gym from 3-4PM. Starting September 26th and ending October 31st. Specific dates: September – 26; October – 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

CultureAll After School (6-8th grade)
Monday afternoons @Perkins ES 4:30-5:30PM
September 18 – November 13 (there will be no classes held September 25th, October 16th, and November 6th)

Ambassador workshops provide hands-on experiences that make the unfamiliar fun to explore. Students will be introduced to a world of ideas, perspectives, and traditions as they develop the skill to interact with differences and create spaces where everyone feels they belong. The fall program may include Kenyan beading, Peruvian pan flutes, Japanese culture, and traditional toys, “A World in a Hat”, Avram and his Accordion, West African drumming, and Scottish games and recreation.


Figure Drawing the Art of People (9-12th grade)
Thursday afternoons 5:00-6:00PM @Central Academy
September 28 – November 9

Learn the classic art of figure drawing! With this class, we will practice drawing shapes and forms, the building blocks for drawing people. Study body proportion and explore various techniques to add color, details such as faces, and so much more. Students are encouraged to bring their own supplies, but we will have some available to use.
Taught by Carissa Dannen who has 2 years of experience teaching at the Des Moines Art Center and 1 year at Hoyt Sherman.


Creating Comics (6-8th grade)
Friday afternoons 5:00-6:00PM @Harding MS
September 29 – November 3

Learn how to make comic books! In this class, we will explore the visual storytelling of comics and how to create our own stories. We will discuss different forms of art and techniques that are part of visual storytelling. Learn how to compose storyboards and scenes for the characters you design. Students are encouraged to bring their own supplies, but we will have some available to use.
Taught by Carissa Dannen who has 2 years of experience teaching at the Des Moines Art Center and 1 year at Hoyt Sherman.


Here are some important information about our Community Education classes for students:

  • Free access to Community Education Classes: Offered to students completely free of charge.
  • Inclusive Access Across Buildings: The location of the class does not limit students from other buildings. Even though a class might be held at one particular building, students from other buildings are more than welcome to attend. However, because we do not provide transportation to sites after school, students from other areas may not be able to attend those sessions (see item #3).
  • Transportation Information: While we would love to provide transportation for students, at this time, we do not offer transportation services for students attending Community Ed classes. We recommend that parents arrange for transportation to and from the classes as needed.