Books can be a wonderful way to raise awareness of the challenges of the differently-abled and how to develop an inclusive outlook and approach. Here are some excellent books to read and discuss with your children.
Ceramists know something very important. It’s that clay, any way you slice it, is fun. And while for many adults, thinking of pottery making still recalls the famous scene from the movie Ghost (could be worse, right?), there’s an entire world of history, ecology, and craft that goes into making things out of clay. Baltimore Clayworks has been the local hub for Baltimore ceramics enthusiasts for the past 36 years. Through their Mt. Washington campus and community sites in under-resourced neighborhoods across the region, Baltimore Clayworks has brought the joy of clay to adults and children alike through innumerable classes, workshops, events and exhibitions. This summer, Baltimore Clayworks will be offering ten 1-week long summer camps for kids and teens, each with a different theme. They’re open to kids ages 6-15, and believe us, they’re all awesome.
Summer has kind of snuck up on us, so if you haven’t gotten out to pick your own strawberries (or anything else) yet, we understand. But don’t let these short lived harvests pass you by! Few things beat munching happily on berries you just picked yourself– except maybe enjoying the strawberry shortcake you made with them. Or the pie. Or the jam. But that’s what’s great about picking your own. You can go home with enough for snacking, baking, and preserving (just as long as you don’t eat all of them in the car ride on the way home).
Needless to say, Baltimore is having a moment right now. Freddie Gray’s death has shaken this city, and no matter where you personally come down on the protests in response, the impact is undeniable. Our city has a lot to think about, and certainly a lot of cleaning up to do. We also have a whole lot of kids who will surely be asking questions, trying to make sense of things, and seeking some semblance of calm and stability in this climate of uncertainty.
Today we’re focusing on the furthest thing from this weather: summer camp. Early as it may seem, it is in fact time to start thinking about how the kids will spend their days once school is out. One great option to check out is the week-long summer camp offered by the Maryland Zoo. It’s a great way to get the kids outside, and to give them an amazing experience interacting with and learning about the zoo’s amazing animals. The zoo’s camps work for kids from grades 2-8. And with each age group, there’s a slightly different focus– from crafts and zoo exploration for the youngest campers to wildlife conservation for the older campers.
Live Baltimore has long been our go-to source for hot tips on city living. They’ve always got the latest scoop on local real estate, the low down on our neighborhoods, and a veritable encyclopedia of incentives and city programs. We know that, and that’s we we love them. But they wanted to go even further in encouraging all of us to stay right here in the heart of Charm City. Knowing that most people’s priorities shift a bit as they start a family, Live Baltimore has zeroed in on the questions and needs of those bringing up kids (or thinking of doing so) here in the city. And they’ve just launched an unbelievable new section to their website that has more answers than you could possibly even have questions for. It’s called Way to Stay because that’s just what it helps you do: find a way to stay in the city you love and make sure that your kids thrive while you do so.
It’s a good thing February easily lends itself to the awesome pun, “Absolutley Febulous.” Because these days, it’s hard for us to see exactly what else there is to love about this cold, cold month. But luckily, Absolutely Febulous is actually as great of a concept as it is a pun. It basically takes the most winter doldrums month of all and turns it on its head, to fill February with amazing deals on food, entertainment, and of course, all of our favorite museums. Is there an exhibition up that you’ve been meaning to see but just haven’t been able to find the time? Been feeling like it’s too cold for much other than slippers and cocoa? Absolutely Febulous has enough Buy-One-Get-One admission offers to local museums that you may just rethink your stay-in-bed-til-April plans.
So, you’ve got your whole romantic Valentine’s Day weekend plan taken care of. Dinner reservations? Check. Gift? Check. Card? Check. Kids who don’t like the idea of being left out of all the fun? Hmmm. Gotta deal with that one, too. But never fear! The Irvine Nature Center– that place that kids and adults love all year round, is hosting a fabulous “Kids Night Out” this Friday– so the little ones can be magically whisked away for the evening while you get a few hours of your own Adults Night Out. Now there’s a novel idea.
Want to spend Valentine’s Day feeling the love, but without all the pressure and faux-romance and all of that? Maybe it’s time to look to the tiny tots in your life for Valentine inspiration. After all, they’re pure love, giggles, and joyousness (except of course when they’re not). That’s why Heart Love Photography is offering special mini-sessions for baby portraits just in time for Valentine’s Day. The sessions result in absolutely gorgeous (but also super cool, non-Anne Geddes-style) portraits that are pretty much guaranteed to be the best Valentine’s Day gifts you’ve ever received (or given, for that matter).