Field Trips can be a great way for kids to learn and have new experiences. Get permission from your host parents before any outings and be sure to take all social distancing precautions. Some museums are requiring advanced tickets or have reduced hours due to the pandemic.
Paint Your Own Pottery Studio
Clay and Ceramics Studio
Online Art Fun – Here is a great website with lots of art activities including ones for older kids.
Webcams – You can do a google search for art websites with webcams. Here are a few to get you started:
Crafts, recipes, activities, and games related to all kinds of bugs, insects, butterflies, and spiders can be found here on the Camp Au Pair – Bugs & Butterfliespinboard.
Outdoors – Kids today do not spend enough time outdoors. Take the kids in the backyard or another nature area (approved by your host parents) and do some activities related to this theme:
Allow them to search for bugs and butterflies.
Observe lightning bugs (also known as fireflies) in the evening. Here is a map showing what people call these little guys in different parts of the country.
After it rains, look for earthworms. Not bugs or butterflies, but very interesting creatures you can find in your own backyard.
NOTE: If you are outdoors with the children, be sure to check for ticks when you come back inside. Here is a blog post explaining the health risk ticks can pose and how to find and remove them safely.
Videos – You can find many great videos of butterflies and insects on YouTube. Check out these videos for kids about bees and ants. All about Insects covers lots of tiny creatures who crawl and fly. Here are a few videos to get you started.
Movies – A Bugs Life, The Bee Movie, Maya the Bee, and The Ant Bully all fit this theme.
Webcams – You can do a Google search for websites with webcams that allow you to observe bugs.
When kids are out of school for the summer, it doesn’t take long for them to become bored and sometimes that leads to sibling squabbles and mischief. Even though they don’t realize it, they are usually missing routine and predictability in their daily schedule. One solution is to make fun plans to keep them busy!
Each week this summer we will share a different Camp Au Pair theme. These weekly themes are designed to give you ideas to keep your host kids occupied and engaged all summer long. They will also be learning. (But shhhh, don’t tell them that part.) Check back each Friday, for the next week’s theme. This gives you a chance to make plans and gather materials for the next week. For each theme there will be crafts, games, snacks and activities. You can just use these ideas or add your own and customize the themes to fit the ages and interests of your host children.
Play dough is the perfect modeling material for children. Their small hands can pat, poke, pinch, roll and knead it into many shapes. Keep it in an airtight container to use another day, or let it air dry into favorite shapes.
Measure 2 cups of flour, one cup of salt and 4 teaspoons of cream of tartar into a bowl. Add 1/4 cup of oil to one cup of water in a separate bowl then add the mixture to the dry ingredients. For colored play dough, squeeze 10-20 drops of food coloring into the water before you add it to the mixture. Cook the dough at low heat in a wide pan, stirring constantly until it becomes rubbery. Remove the dough from the heat and knead it for a few minutes. When it cools the kids can play too!
Here is a fun Halloween treat of the season. Who knew eating spider webs could be so yummy?! These are easy, inexpensive, and cute!
– pretzel sticks
– white chocolate/bark candy coating
– chocolate (baker’s, candy coating, or chips would probably all work)
– baggie or pastry bag
– wax paper
Lay out your pretzels on the wax paper in “starburst” arrangements of 6 or 8 pretzels (it’s a good idea to put it on a cookie sheet for transport stability).
After melting your white chocolate/bark coating, place in a baggie and cut the corner off (or use a pastry bag). Start piping your chocolate in the middle of the pretzel arrangement, making sure to coat all the pretzels.
Continue piping outward around the pretzels, until you have a web. Then, place two raisins in the middle for the body of the spider.
Melt your regular chocolate and pipe over the raisins. I found that the spiders turned out better when I piped the legs of the spider first and then did the body. Place in the fridge for a few minutes until the chocolate is hard. Then, gently peel back the wax paper.…and eat!
The 241st St. Patrick’s Day Parade takes place March 13. (Photo courtesy Irish Philadelphia)
Philadelphia’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is actually the city’s largest parade, with 20,000 participants representing more than 150 groups including marching bands, dance groups, youth groups, Irish associations and floats.
Thousands of festively green-bedecked spectators line the Ben Franklin Parkway to enjoy the parade each year, a religious and cultural celebration of St. Patrick, on the Sunday prior to St. Patrick’s Day (this year’s parade: March 13, beginning at 11 a.m.). The first documented St. Patrick’s Day Celebration Parade in Philadelphia was held in 1771, marking this year’s the 241st year.
The parade begins at 16th and JFK Boulevard before making its way down the Ben Franklin Parkway. Click here for the full parade route. Some best bets for vantage points include Logan Circle and the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where a dance floor will be set up at Eakins Oval.
A series of awards are given to parade performers, ranging from Outstanding Float to the group that best exemplifies the spirit of the parade, so you can weigh your own opinions against the judges’ decisions, revealed Wednesday, April 13, 6-9 p.m. at a ceremony at Finnigan’s Wake.
The St. Patrick’s Day Parade, a Philadelphia tradition, is a celebration not to be missed. If the weather is less than exemplary, you can watch it live on CW Philly 57 from noon to 3 p.m.; it will also stream live on the station’s website. And also check out Hear Philly’s look at St. Patrick’s Day bar tours in Philadelphia for an added layer of holiday fun.
Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade
When: Sunday, March 13, beginning at 11 a.m.
Where: Begins at 16th and JFK Boulevard
More info: www.philadelphiastpatsparade.com