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In and near Brookline you can find a wealth of opportunities for learning that range from forums on independent living, to exercise classes, to arts and crafts, to honing one’s skill on a computer or flute, and much more.

Arboretum artists - photo by Mimi Katz

An important objective of BrooklineCAN is to encourage and promote successful independent living. Toward that end we offer a variety of lectures and panel discussions along with our partners – the Brookline Senior Center, Goddard House, Jewish Family & Children’s Services and Brookline Adult and Community Education.

Recent forums have tackled such questions as whether and how to adapt your home environment, which housing option is right for you, what is the right time for downsizing, which legal documents should be saved, and how to get rid of stuff while preserving memories.

Note: Click on the title to go to the web site for each listing.

Brookline Adult and Community Education Program
Courses are offered in computers, dance and exercise, arts and crafts, music, writing and dozens of other topics. Costs vary, but some courses may be discounted as much as 30 percent for seniors. Also, many courses are co-sponsored by the Brookline Council on Aging and are offered at the Brookline Senior Center. Course selections can be viewed online or you can call to request a catalog.

Brookline Arts Center
Offers courses in drawing, painting, portraits, pottery and wheelthrowing, enamels, jewelry and metalsmithing, decoupage, beading and more. Classes are appropriate for all levels of experience and run for 9 weeks. Cost is approximately $28 to $35 per class, including materials.

Brookline Senior Center
Brookline Senior Center - Photo by John Seay The Senior Center offers a variety of courses, many at a modest cost or even free, in poetry, Zumba, modern dance, painting, languages and computers. 617-730-2777.

Click for large flyer

Brookline Public Libraries
All three of the Brookline Public Libraries offer book discussion groups, free computer access, museum passes, movies, and home delivery of books to homebound seniors.
Main Library 617-730-2370
Coolidge Corner branch 617-730-2380
Putterham branch 617-730-2385

Thanks to the Library Connection, homebound Brookline residents can receive library materials delivered to their home by volunteers. This is a partnership between the Council on Aging and Public Library of Brookline. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer or receiving this service, contact Volunteer Coordinator Patricia Burns at the Council on Aging 617-730-2743.

Boston University Evergreen Program
A walk or short T ride down Commonwealth Avenue takes you to BU, where noncredit participation in most courses is available at approximately $75 per course to those at least 58 years old. The Evergreen program also offers one-time lectures, field trips, and social events. No educational credentials or professional affiliations are required.

Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement
HILR is a noncredit, nondegree program with no minimum age requirement. There is no initiation or annual membership fee, but individuals must pay a tuition fee that is currently in the range of $400 per semester.

UMass Boston, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
Courses in a wide variety of topics are offered usually once a week (during the day) and can last anywhere from 4-12 weeks. Participants must be at least 50 years old; membership fees range from $50 to $175.

UMass Boston, Manning Certificate Program
A leadership program for people of all ages. Seniors may be eligible for reduced fees or scholarships based on income. Areas of study include training in direct services, social policy, and economic issues of aging, as well as research on aging issues. Participants receive the Frank J. Manning Certificate in Gerontology upon completion of coursework.

Brandeis Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (BOLLI )
Offers a broad range of noncredit educational activities for retired, semi-retired, and other adult participants. Program emphasizes peer leadership, individual and group participation, and research. BOLLI offers 10-week semesters in the fall and spring. Classes meet for one hour and 25 minutes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Lunch & Learn lecture series is held between classes on both days.
For more information, contact Sharon Sokoloff.

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Elder Care (But Were Afraid to Ask). On Thursday, May 15, 2014 BrooklineCAN presented the subject panel discussion moderated by Ann L. Hartstein, Secretary, Mass. Executive Office of Elder Affairs.

Support Disclaimer: Inclusion of services on this website does not represent a recommendation from the Brookline Council on Aging, the Brookline Senior Center, or the Brookline Community Aging Network.

Disclaimer: Inclusion of services through this program does not represent a recommendation or guarantee of work performance from the Brookline Council on Aging, the Brookline Senior Center, or the Brookline Community Aging Network. The user of this program therefore agrees to release the above named from any and all liability. The user should make whatever investigation or other resources that they deem necessary or appropriate before hiring or engaging Service Providers.