As summer draws nearer and nearer (and your calendar reminders to sign up for summer camps ramp steadily up), we’ve got a cool one — actually a handful of cool ones — for your consideration. The iD Tech Summer Camps, which run at universities all over the region (including Penn, Villanova and Bryn Mawr!), offer some really cool options for kids 7 to 17 who are interested in anything from video game design to robotics to virtual reality to filmmaking … and beyond.
Each camp offers a slightly different experience: At Penn, the week-long day camps are aimed at kids 7 to 17, and offer courses on things like game design, robotics, AI and machine learning, and cool coding projects. Meantime, the day- and overnight options at Villanova include those things, as well as virtual reality, 3D modeling/printing, filmmaking, photography, and more. And at Bryn Mawr, there’s a special all-girls “Alexa Café” camp, wherein the kids can learn coding, design, film, and engineering in small, collaborative clusters. The curriculum emphasizes leadership, entrepreneurship, and philanthropy — and the camp runs week-long day and overnight options for girls ages 10-15. (Really, you should go to the sites and check out the options of courses — the descriptions are incredible!)
All of the camps include hands-on, pressure-free, personalized technology instruction that’s delivered in a fun, kid-friendly way. The whole ethos behind iD Tech revolves around the idea that technology shouldn’t be intimidating or uninspiring for kids — rather, that it’s cool, meaningful, even life-changing. And intermixed between the tech courses are some normal summer camp activities — the kids get a chance play and burn some energy and make friends and build cool STEM skills in areas like coding and robotics. (Don’t you wish you had a summer camp like this?)
If you, like me, get nervous/agitated every time you read one of those PSA suggesting that you have probably put your car seat in wrong (like this one, or this one, or this one), or if you — also like me — drive an older car that doesn’t have the built-in car seat attachers (is there a name for those things?), then you may appreciate a reminder that you can take your car to professionals who know exactly how to secure that thing, and will do it for you (for FREE). They can also just reassure you that you’ve done it correctly, and give you pointers on installing it next time. Depending on where you go, checks are run by the state police or CHOP and its partners. Here’s a listing of upcoming car-seat fitting days from CHOP and crew (you can register for a time online); here’s one from the state troopers (you can call to make an appointment).
I will say that when we couldn’t figure out how to do the install in our (pretty old) Honda and when our mechanic friend wouldn’t touch that project (liability), we took it to the Limerick fire station for one of the CHOP check days, and the experts couldn’t have been nicer or more helpful. (And there is absolutely no way we could have done it properly ourselves.) So: a totally worth-it little chore.
Also, related: Here’s a great little page from CHOP on all things car seat-safety related — videos on installing, the rules for seats by age, a safety checklist, and so forth. It’s helpful!
Hey y’all: Did you know that the Harlem Globetrotters are coming to the Liacouras Center this Friday? (They are! And I’ve seen them! And it is hilarious and magical!) And! If you visit the Wee FB page and leave a comment on our post about the upcoming game, your name will be entered in our random drawing to win four tickets to the game? We’ll pick a winner this afternoon. (Wednesday.)
From KQED: 10 (good!) books to spur on a love of math in kids.
Good Lord. Via WashPo: “Health officials fear an Australian tourist spread measles across New York.” And related, via NYT: Measles cases in Europe quadrupled in 2017.
How fun does this pizza cooking class at the Free Library sound?
From NPR: The American Association of Pediatrics wants every teen screened for depression annually.
Y’all, this story from New York Magazine about the roommate from hell is one of the most insane things I have ever read. So HORRIFIC? (And … local!)
Do you guys know Cat & Nat, of YouTube fame? (Or maybe you saw them on The Today Show?) Well, the duo is hitting The Kimmel Center on March 25 for a show — sort of a comedy act meets variety show — and you can get tix here.
Intuitively, I think we already know this, but this Huffington article makes the case for why homework for young kids is not a great thing.
Guys, we already covered this in last week’s free stuff post, but remember that the Barnes First Sunday Family Day kicks off on March 4!
Also, in terms of upcoming activities: The awesome Tinkergarten classes will be kicking off in Washington Square Park again this spring, and you can catch a free trial class on either March 20 at 4 p.m. or April 3 at 4 p.m. (The paid 8-week spring session will run from April 17 to June 5, Tuesdays from 4 to 5:15 p.m.)
Hey kids! Go exercise your American right! (Via PhillyMag.)
This feels like an apt round-up for moms, via The Strategist: 11 Best Under-Eye Concealers on Amazon.
Philly is, according to WHYY, in “desperate need of foster families” for children.
This is pretty helpful, via NPR: How to detox from your phone. (Because we all need to, right?)
And this NYT piece about how to break up with your phone is actually even better. The author, Catherine Price, is a Philadelphian — and she just released “How to Break Up With Your Phone: The 30-Day Plan to Take Back Your Life.”
Helpful (although hopefully not) in a totally different, horrible way. The New York Times tells us what to do when there’s an active shooter.
What a cool, uplifting story: The power of positive reinforcement in a Philly elementary school. Via Philly.com.
Okay, admittedly, some of these Parents.com breakfast ideas for kids are patently insane for busy people, but some of them are awesome.
Speaking of, thanks Goop, for dinnertime hacks for people too tired to cook.
Presented without comment.
Related, from Philly.com: “After Florida school shooting, Philly-area teachers and students mobilize.”
Fascinating stuff from Parents.com: What toddlers eat, worldwide.
The Cut rounded up a whole bunch of women’s early pregnancy symptoms. Fun! (Mostly not!)
Wow: The city has already filled more than 17,000 potholes this year. (!!!) Only 1.6 million more to go, right? (Via Philly Mag.)
And speaking of Philly streets: Do I need to add exploding manhole covers as one of my top Philly streets-related fears? (Currently, sinkholes take top place on that list.)
Do y’all remember when we wrote about the new Phield House? They now have OPEN PLAY time for 2- to 5-year-olds, Music Monkey Jungle for 1- to 5-year-olds, and kid yoga classes for 3- to 5-year-olds!
You’re going to want to see this charming little video involving Tiffiany Haddish, Oprah and Ellen. (How could it be anything but wonderful?)
And finally, just for a laugh. (Thanks, Onion.)
You guys may remember that we’ve written before about Goldfish Swim Schools: The popular spot for swim lessons (known for its small class size, super-comfortable warm water, and kid-friendly instruction) has heretofore had locations in Fort Washington and Mount Laurel. But as of this spring, there’s going to be two new Goldfish Schools — one in Oaks opening in early March, and one in Malvern, opening in May.
A bit more about the school: The nationally known chain (with more than 80 locations around the country) teach swimming skills to babies from four months on up through 12-year-old kids in really nice facilities, complete with viewing galleries for parents, warm-water showers for rinsing off, snack bars, hair-drying stations, and more. More importantly, the teaching methods at Goldfish focus on the child’s comfort and competence at each step of the way — the end goals being that they love to swim and that they know how to stay safe in the water. There are loads of courses on offer, so you can schedule a class (or classes, if you have multiple kids) that works with your schedule. Another bonus: Classes are offered on a “perpetual” basis, meaning you don’t need to wait for the next session to start before you can enroll. The place also has family swims (for members and non-members) so everyone can just enjoy the water … and, of course, they do parties, too.
Want to check it out or register for classes? Visit the website (here’s the info for Oaks; here’s the one for Malvern; here’s the main site, where you can read all about the school in general), or follow them on Facebook (Oaks or Malvern). You can also hit up the ribbon-cutting in Oaks on March 15 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. for a free family swim.
The mama: Fairmounter Ceili (pronounced KAY-leigh) Cascarano is a senior manager in external innovation by trade (she works for a consumer healthcare company), and a Southerner by birth (she grew up in Atlanta). She came to Philly a few years back by way of Hoboken, where they lived for five years before “we decided that living in 600 square feet and having a crib in a closet wasn’t sustainable with two kids.” (About those kids: Braeden is 4, and Marion is 2 … and now they’re expecting a third.) Still wanting a city life, she and her husband decamped for Philly — the “best decision we’ve made in the last few years,” she says. “We’ve fallen in love with the energy, passion and endless activities this city offers.”
Your job description: Senior Manager, External Innovation. I LOVE my job (most days!) and find it incredibly fulfilling. I work for a consumer healthcare company and spent my first six years there doing marketing and running businesses for some amazing brands. I’ve spent the last two years working with external companies across the world (mainly entrepreneurs and start-ups in the consumer healthcare and health tech spaces) that my company is actively partnering with/investing in. I’m inspired by entrepreneurs every day — they see a need and have the passion and ability to create a product, or to offer to do something about it. It’s certainly a life lesson that goes well beyond the walls of any business.
Favorite kids’ classes: Soccer Shots and t-ball. Gotta get that energy out somehow! Read more →