Sometimes I think parenting a tween is harder than a toddler. Yes, there were temper tantrums, toilet training, and picky eating issues that kept me hopping during the toddler years, but generally, it was pretty easy to get my daughter to do what I wanted her to do when she was small, especially if a tiny bit amount of trickery was involved.
Case in point, When she was little I was able to get her to eat just about any vegetable just by pureeing the bejeebers out of it and hiding it in apple sauce or brownies. Sadly, she caught on to me at around five and since then her vegetable consumption has dropped considerably.
Another thing that was easier when my child was small was summer. She was in daycare until kindergarten so everything was easy-peasy lemon squeezy. Once she started school it was a whole different ballgame. Now, like thousands of parents across the nation, I’m faced with the seasonal dilemma of what to do with the kids during summer break.
Lucky for you (and me) there’s a whole slew of summer camps on the Art&Seek calendar right now — so many in fact, we decided to create a special summer camp theme for easy access. Here are just a few highlights.
Got a kid age 6 to 15 who’s been bitten by the acting bug? Teatro Dallas is offering a 5-week Children’s Theater Camp (that’s right, 5 weeks!) that covers a wide range of artistic activities designed to stimulate creativity and imagination. Kids will learn everything from building props and applying make-up to acting and music. The program runs from June 5 to July 7.
A lot of kids don’t realize that before the iPhone people took pictures with a boxy looking thing called a camera and that film, paper, chemicals, and darkrooms were required to make a photo. Dallas Center for Photography’s Summer Photo Camps will teach your little shutterbugs how to create photos hands-on, the old school way using materials and techniques that have been used to make photographs for over 150 years. The 5-day camps are offered in two sessions for kids going into grades 4-7 and 8-12.
You want Junior to learn the piano, but sadly he’s not as enthusiastic as you like. Get your kiddo jazzed about the piano this summer at Piano Explorer Camp at Parker Piano Studios. The 5-day camp is designed for kids ages 5-7 with no prior piano experience. Campers will learn key names, notes values, fun chants, beginning pieces and will actually be excited as they learn the piano in a fun, energetic group environment. The camp starts Monday, June 5 and is from 9 to 11 a.m.
Make this a rock n’ roll summer with Oil and Cotton’s Songwriting Camp. Kids 7-12 get to form their own bands and then write, rehearse and perform. They’ll get the opportunity to learn about songwriting by working with professionals in the industry, make merch for the band, and at the camps conclusion jam for family and friends with their rock show.
For little campers who love the great outdoors, Camp Cedar Hill at the Dogwood Canyon Audubon Center at Cedar Hill could be just the ticket for fun in the sun this summer. Kids 6-11 can spend 8 weeks exploring the canyon through art, technology, animal encounters and more. Other experiences may include special guests and off-site trips to the local pool. You can sign up for just one week or all 8. Best of all, these are all-day camps (8:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.) and before and after care is available.
Your STEM kid can scratch that programming itch at Mess Labs’ Code Camp: Scratch on the Web. Campers will learn to code and make their own games in the popular Scratch language. Each day will also feature analog deductive reasoning exercises and even some experiences in either robotics, VR, art or electronics. This camp is best for beginners ages 6 to 12, but more experienced campers are welcome to attend and act as helpers, or get support in more advanced projects.
Looking to take your STEM kid to new heights? Check out the Flight Adventure Camp at American Airlines C.R. Smith Flight Museum. Kids in 3rd and 4th grade will meet aviation professionals, tour facilities, perform experiments and activities, and learn what it takes to be an aviator. Highlights include everything from designing satellites and parachutes to beginner flight simulations.