We know, we know (sigh).The arrival of Labor Day means the end of splashing in the Frog Pond Spray Pool, visiting area attractions on Free Fun Fridays, and jamming with favorite local bands during free outdoor concerts. But it is not the end of the summer! Technically, we still have almost a month left of summer, and gosh darn it, we're going to milk it for all it's worth. Although we must wait until next year to enjoy many of summer's pleasures, there are plenty of ways to stretch summertime bliss into autumn:
All aboard the STEAM Train. Next stop: The intersection of Arts and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Summer is coming to an end, and your kids want to continue to do the amazing things they were introduced to in a STEM summer camp. They’re in luck, because the STEM/STEAM (the A adds Arts) offerings for kids in Boston extend into the school year. Check out these places offering unique classes that encourage them to use their creativity while learning STEM-related skills. (And take a look at some really cool places for STEM birthday parties, too.)
Even if your kids haven’t seen Night at the Museum or read The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, the appeal of staying overnight in a museum or zoo seems to be universal. These favorite destinations, within an hour’s drive from Boston, make the fantasy a reality. For a night your child will be talking about for a long time, read on and start planning your family or group slumber party among science exhibits, with nocturnal animals, on a battleship, or in a baseball stadium. You might even want to add one of these sleepovers to your list of things to do with the kids before the end of summer.
If you have a young builder-maker, budding scientist, or technology enthusiast in your house, there are birthday party possibilities around Boston that will thrill you both. You could choose 3D printing at Einstein’s Workshop, design challenges at the LEGOLAND Discovery Center, paleontology at the Discovery Museums, nature exploration at the Blue Hills Trailside Museum, or from among many other science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) themes. You’ll not only be celebrating your child, you’ll be celebrating your child’s interests and dreams for the future. Plus, your kid will have a super cool party, which is what it's all about. Here's the lowdown on geektastic parties in and around Boston.
When you're homeschooling and don't have a built-in school community, it's always nice to connect with other homeschooling (or unschooling) families. It’s also nice for your kids to have opportunities for exploration and enrichment beyond the regular curriculum. What’s even better is when organizations like the MFA, Mass Audubon, and The Eliot School offer those extracurricular activities where homeschooled kids can connect, at times that don’t revolve around a traditional bricks and mortar school schedule. Here are some excellent extracurricular classes and programs for homeschoolers in clay work, nature exploration, fine arts, woodworking, and even juggling.
Whether our kids are adventurous eaters or too timid to try anything beyond boxed mac ’n’ cheese, teaching them about food prep, healthy eating and nutrition is one of the more important things we as parents can do for their well being. Cooking together at home is one way to do this, but there are also plenty of opportunities for “instructive” fun through kids’ cooking classes and workshops.
One of the appealing aspects of kids’ cooking instruction is that it quite often takes the form of a single-class workshop or two- to three-session program. So, even if your children have regular sports team commitments or semester-long dance or music classes, they can still satisfy their inner foodie selves without missing a goal or a beat. Plus, many kids’ cooking classes are offered during those long school vacations or summer breaks - just the thing to keep kids engaged and entertained. Cooking workshops also make fun birthday parties - kids learn something, have fun and are well fed. And (maybe best of all!), no mess for the parents. (More cooking party ideas here.)
We’ve rounded up seven places that offer kids’ cooking classes and workshops in and around Boston. Get ready for your kids to cook up something great!
Taking full advantage of Boston’s location - the Charles River to the west and Boston Harbor to the east - community boating programs provide numerous opportunities for kids and families to learn to sail in Boston. Look a little further to the north and south, and options multiply. From annual memberships to five-day passes to one-day rentals, the following sailing centers offer packages that will fit your budget and schedule. Note that many of the lesson and camp programs fill up fast, so be sure to plan ahead.
Local mom and “Outdoors with Kids Boston” guidebook author, Kim Foley MacKinnon, shares her best family outing tips and picks with you as part of our guest blog series with the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Kids Outdoors Boston free online community.
Going on outdoor summer adventures with your kids often means eating on the go, maybe picking something up at a snack bar or bringing a PB&J sandwich and a piece of fruit. It can be fun to switch the focus to making a picnic the main event, and the setting is the key. Here are some outstanding picnic spots that will make your al fresco meal that much more delicious!
We're glad you're here at Mommy Poppins Boston, your free online resource for everything for families and kids in the greater Boston area. We'd love to hear from you with any questions or suggestions! — Tara