The Splash Academy is a kid's activities area that offers fun and "free babysitting" of children between the ages of 3 to 10 years-old. The program is very similar on most Norwegian cruise ships, with longer hours of service (earlier opening times and later closing) on port days, and shorter for sea days. Specifically, on port days, the Splash Academy is usually open right before the ship docks/drops anchor, even as earlier as 7 AM at times. Closing time varies, but usually the place shuts down at 10 or 10:30 PM, but if you need child care beyond that time, the charge ranges between $6 and $8 an hour, which we found to be very reasonable. The staff is usually very friend and goes by a "codename" of sorts such as Kazoo or Rocket. They are all certified and trained in interacting and conducting group activities with children.
On port days, you can opt to leave your kid at Splash Academy for lunch or even dinner as they will take them to a restaurant or the buffet to eat. That costs $6, which is again, not bad at all. This is a sample schedule of programs for the Turtles (ages 3 to 5) from aboard the Norwegian Star during our 2015 Transatlantic Cruise.
11:30 AM to 4:30 PM: Splash Academy Open House (time to register the kids and visit the fun-filled room they will be hanging out at)
5:00 PM: Sail-away Celebration at the pool deck which is not Splash Academy related, though some of the staff do get introduced there
5:30 PM to 7:00 PM: Splash Academy Open House second session
8:00 PM to 10:30 PM: Splash Academy's Big Debut! (Parents need to sign in their child and drop off and sign out their child at pick up using the child's and parent's keycards. Come along & make new friends, play new games & more!)
11:30 PM to 1:30 AM: Late Night Fun Zone (Costs extra $ as mentioned above. Nintendo Wii & Story Time: It's a late night of gaming action as Splash Academy introduces the Nintendo Wii U. For our little ones, we have a fun puppet story time.)
Sea Day 1: Fairytale at Sea!
9:00 AM to 10:00 AM: Freestyle Free Play
10:00 AM to 12:00 PM: Dora & Diego's Adventures (Caves, 7 Seas, Bridge, & more clues! Grab your map & backpack as you help Dora & Diego Solve their adventures!)
12:00 PM to 2:00 PM: Splash Academy CLOSED (typical for sea days)
2:00 PM to 3:00 PM: Freestyle Free Play
3:00 PM to 5:00 PM: Rainbow Workshop (come & join the creative youth staff to let go your imagination & create colorful painting arts)
5:00 PM to 7:00 PM: Splash Academy CLOSED (again typical for sea days)
7:00 PM to 10:30 PM: Fairytale Island (Goldilocks, Red Riding Hood, Knights & Princesses.... Welcome to Fairytale Island, where imagination reigns!)
10:30 PM to 1:30 AM: Late Night Fun Zone (costs extra; Ball Games Galore: Gaga Ball dominates in a night of action!)
BTW DO NOT miss the super-fun Pirates Parade that usually happens mid-way through the cruise! The staff and kids will dress up like a group of rowdy raiders looking for the fabled treasure chest! Usually they will go through the buffet first so that is a great opportunity for parents to take photos. You can follow them all the way to the atrium where it is likely the location of the "buried" treasure. Here is a video of the famous Splash Academy Pirate Parade: