This week’s Camp Au Pair theme is Backyard Safari.
Looking for a change of scenery?
Want to get out DC’s concrete jungle for the day?
Or maybe you just want to try a fried Oreo?
All of these dreams can come true over the next few weeks at one of the many area county and state fairs.
What is a Fair?
Usually held in late summer or early fall, county and state fairs often include agricultural exhibits or competitors, carnival amusement rides, and games, displays of industrial products, automobile racing, and entertainment such as musical concerts (adapted from Wikipedia).
Maryland and Virginia Fairs
The Montgomery County Agricultural Fair and the Arlington County Fair are held in August; The Prince George’s County Fair takes place in September. KidFriendly DC and NBCWashington have details about some of the most popular county fairs throughout Maryland and Virginia.
Most au pairs have mixed feeling about returning home. As the end of the program nears, there is both excitement and nerves about adjusting to life at home.
Adapting to life back home will include some of the same emotions experienced with adjusting to life in the United States, such as:
- Homesickness (only this time for your American family and friends)
- Rejecting things that are cultural norms in your home country
- Adapting to a new environment and routine
- Accepting your new situation
How do you prepare for going home? While you have been away, things at home may have changed. You have certainly changed, and after adapting to the American culture, you must adapt again to your own culture. Here are some tips to consider as you prepare for the journey home:
- Be flexible as you think about life back home, give yourself time to adjust, and don’t expect it to be easy every day.
- Let yourself be sad and feel the loss of friends and family.
- Reflect on your experience and acknowledge what you have gained and learned during your au pair year.
- Focus on positive ways you have grown.
- Make a list of the skills you have acquired or strengthened as an au pair.
- Make your new resume!
- You made it! Celebrate and be proud of your au pair achievements.
- Going home is not the end of something….it’s the beginning of something new.
(From Christine Connally’s blog post Going Home and New Beginnings)
This week’s Camp Au Pair theme is Cars & Trucks.
Crafts, recipes, activities, and games related to all kinds of vehicles can all be found here on the Camp Au Pair – Cars & Trucks pinboard.
Field Trips can be a great way for kids to learn and have new experiences. Here are a few places that fit this theme:
- Smithsonian Museum of American History has an exhibit with cars and trucks from a variety of different time periods.
- Port Discovery in Baltimore has a fun gas station exhibit where kids can pretend they are driving a car and filling it up at the gas station.
- Look for construction areas where the kids can observe big machines in action. Kids should observe from the car or a safe area.
- Keep an eye out for the trash truck and let them watch the truck in action.
- Playseum in Bethesda has fun interactive activities for kids to try.
- Go to a drive-through car wash or let the kids make their own car wash at home.
- Touch a Truck is a free, family-friendly event taking place at the Bowie Baysox stadium on August 3.
Videos – Amazing Big Trucks is a kid-friendly video showing big trucks in action. Look for fun videos on YouTube about cars and trucks.
Movies – Cars, Turbo, The Love Bug, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and Bob the Builder Mega Machines movies all fit this theme. Common Sense Media’s list of Best Car Movies for Kids and Teens has more suggestions. (Always check with your host parents first, as some of these movies are rated PG or PG-13.)
Books – Common Sense Media’s list of books about Cars, Trucks, and Trains has lots of great suggestions, including Let’s Go for a Drive! An Elephant and Piggie Book, Bulldozer’s Big Day, and Go, Dog, Go! Stop by your local library for these and other books about cars and trucks.
The 4th of July celebrates the date American colonists declared independence from Great Britain in 1776. Also called Independence Day, the 4th of July is commemorated throughout the USA with fireworks, parades, concerts, family gatherings, and cookouts.
As the nation’s capital, Washington, DC, is the perfect place to celebrate this truly American holiday. Here are just a few of the many celebrations in DC: