Kids' Guide 2011
A fun-for-all helping of the area’s best activities, learning tools, gathering places and more for little Main Liners.
(page 8 of 8)
Rainy Days Rule!
Move aside, videogames. You’re not the only kind of indoor fun.
When your kids get stir-crazy and the weather is too messy to visit Color Me Mine’s Glen Mills or Wayne workshops, give its Online Bisque Painter a whirl. Your teeny and teen artists will be peacefully creative as they digitally design various “ceramic” objects with a palette of 19 colors and several brush sizes. Save, print and add to the fridge. Visit colormemine.com.
While you’ve got the computer on, check out Ben’s Guide to U.S. Government for Kids. It’s the U.S. Government Printing Office’s interactive educational tool for grades K-12, offering both online games like Liberty Bell connect-the-dots and printable mind-benders like the Constitution Crossword. Get everyone costumed in makeshift 1800s garb, and take turns reciting lines from the Gettysburg Address—all before breaking into a tickle war, of course. Visit bensguide.gpo.gov.
Take things to the big screen at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute and Phoenixville’s Colonial Theatre. The former holds Saturday kids’ matinees at 11 a.m. This month’s features include Annie (March 5), Mary Poppins (March 19) and The Wizard of Oz (March 12). Parents interested in new releases—but afraid their tot will disrupt the audience—will enjoy Wednesday’s “Going Gaga” matinees, with baby-conscious elements like lower volume and dim lighting.
At the Colonial, the March film theme is “The Many Lives of Batman,” featuring all of the classic pictures. On April 9, ages 4 and up can enjoy the Cat’s Pajamas, a comedic rock-music-and-dance act. Visit brynmawrfilm.org and thecolonialtheatre.com.
If you haven’t already discovered it, 88.5 WXPN-FM’s Kids Corner is an award-winning radio show just for children. Listen live 7-8 p.m. Monday-Thursday for wholesome songs and interactive learning segments. Every second Thursday of the month spotlights former Bryn Mawr College professor Lisa Chirlian and her “Kitchen Chemistry” for kids ages 5-13. You can find her home experiments on the program’s website, making it easy for you and your family to spontaneously create slime, make eggshells disappear, or perform magic tricks with ice. Visit kidscorner.org.
Brandywine River Museum embodies artistry and history—and it makes both kid-accessible through its hourlong Read-Aloud Tours on Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. Ages 3-6 gather in a gallery for storytime, featuring books like The Tallest Leprechaun: A Tall Tale of Terrible Teasing by child author Emily Grace Koenig (March 17), and then create a work of art—say, a St. Patrick’s Day collage. The museum also offers free admission on Sunday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to noon through Nov. 20 (except May 29). To register for the tours, call (610) 388-8382 or e-mail email@example.com. Visit brandywinemuseum.org.
If it’s payday and you haven’t spoiled your kiddies in a while, stop by Nicholas Smith Toys in Broomall. Hours vanish in this toy mecca as soon as kids (of any age) lay their eyes on the “do touch” racetrack, Madame Alexander dolls, puzzles, dinosaurs, stuffed animals, model rockets, and unbelievable train set and collection. A different toy occupies nearly every square inch. Talk about incentive to be good girls and boys! 2343 West Chester Pike, (610) 356-2180, nstoys.com.