Westchester

These Kids at the Women's March Will Melt Your Heart

When I was in first grade a child was killed crossing Seventh Avenue on his way to school by a speeding truck. So, I remember my first protest well. Just a handful of us, moms and kids, walking in a tight circle with signs and chanting to demand a crossing guard. We got that crossing guard and a lesson was learned: Even as kids, we could have a voice and make a difference.

America has been on tenterhooks this election season. It has caused much "unfriending" and, perhaps, drawn even more stark lines between groups. On Saturday, however, I saw Facebook friends from all backgrounds coming together at the Women's Marches across the country and the world. I even saw some who voted for Trump, but wanted to stand for women's rights and also listen to the other side! But of everyone out there, the thing that struck me the most was seeing all the children.

We may never agree on any of the political issues facing this nation, but one thing I hope we can all agree on is that these children are amazing and are learning that you're never too young to enjoy this country's most important freedoms of speech and peaceful protest. Whatever "sides" they may choose to take, I hope this is just the beginning for our daughters (and our sons) to feel powerful, valuable, and able to take constructive action to raise their voices, not to yell and name call, but to try to improve the world for all of us together.

 

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Popovich Pet Theater, Join the Circus

What a motley assortment of fun and enriching activities is in store this week for Westchester families! Fortunately, there are five days to take it in; our top picks are below.

Develop a life skill that may come in handy on the job market at Web Design Workshop. Immerse your family in Asian culture at the Chinese New Year Celebration (one of several we’ve identified for the season in our roundup). And just try to stay seated at the dazzling and amusing The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater.

So don’t sit home when you can get out and enjoy all this great stuff! There’s even more to choose from on our Event Calendar.

Chinese New Year: Celebrate Lunar New Year with Westchester Kids

Mid-winter holidays are few and far between and often focus on Valentine’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and Presidents’ Day. Less celebrated is the Chinese New Year (also known as Lunar New Year). This year, local festivities marking the year of the rooster give families a chance for fun cultural immersion.

The events we’ve culled together vary in scope and offer something for all ages—including food, music, dance and crafts. Read on to learn about Chinese New Year activities happening this year in January and February, and then visit our Event Calendar for other great happenings in and around Westchester this month.

Weekend Fun for Westchester Kids: STEAM, Concerts, Camp Fair

It’s all about STEAM this January weekend in Westchester and the Hudson Valley, with an emphasis on science and arts programs for families. The arts come in two forms—both ticketed performances and hands-on experiences.

The Maccabeats combine Jewish humor with a cappella singing, while the exhilarating compositions of John Philip Sousa and others is sure to provide a mid-winter punch in the arm at West Point on the March. For more hands-on pursuits, take a spin at the African Dance Class or pull up a Petri dish for a germ of an idea at High Touch - High Tech. Learn about the technology of freezing foods in the era of your great-great grandmother at The Importance of Ice.

Be sure to sign up for our FREE newsletters so you can receive not only our weekly top picks but all our latest news, roundups and in-depth reviews in your inbox—and tell a friend! Read on to learn more about this weekend; then head to our Event Calendar to see even more options, this weekend and beyond.

Beat Winter Boredom with 8 Awesome STEM Activities

Winter days can leave families in need of fun indoor activities. We worked with Sylvan Learning, a leader in STEM education for kids, to develop ideas for a “boredom buster” jar full of STEM activities. Each fun project is super simple and includes concrete STEM educational tips to bring the learning home. That’s what we love about Sylvan EDGE programs; the educators at Sylvan Learning always make sure that the kids go home understanding important STEM concepts while having fun doing it.

To make your STEM activities boredom busters jar just print out the downloadable sheets, cut out the activity cards, fold and place in a jar or bowl. Any time the kids get restless or need a screen time break, just pull an activity out for some at-home fun. Note: Some of these activities do take some preparation, so make sure to gather your materials—including freezing your colored ice sculpture shapes—in advance so you are ready to go when boredom calls...or whines, as the case may be.

Free Technology and Coding Summer Camp for Teen Girls

Although I’m a proponent of STEM education, I’ll admit I was reluctant to jump on the “kids must learn to code” bandwagon. Then my kids started learning to code, and I realized it was about a lot more than becoming the creator of the next Angry Birds or Candy Crush.

Learning basic computer programming encourages creative problem solving and logical thinking, and can be a key that opens doors of opportunity for kids. However, there’s a big gender gap, with girls shying away from computer science. Girls Who Code, a national nonprofit organization, is working to change that with its free Summer Immersion Program for girls. Keep reading to find out when and where the program is happening this summer, who is eligible, and how to apply - starting this week.

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Fake News, Popcorn Party

If you’re under the (wrong) impression that all the great family programs in Westchester happen on the weekends, think again! Creative programming abounds Monday through Friday.

In addition to celebrating the holiday weekend, our top picks include Truth, “Truthiness” & “Post-Truth": How to Read the News in the Information Age to help teens become savvy skeptics. Have fun (and eat well) while learning a life skill at One-Pot Cooking. And celebrate National Popcorn Day with one of America’s most pop-ular snacks and related activities at Popcorn Party.

These are just a few of our highlights, so keep reading on. Our Event Calendar has many more activities to choose from for all ages, and our January GoList can help you plan the rest of the month!

Bounce and Jump: Indoor Trampoline Parks in and around Westchester

Where do you go when the kids are bouncing off the walls on a cold or rainy day? Somewhere they’re allowed to bounce off the walls, of course! 

We’ve rounded up the indoor trampoline parks in and around Westchester and Rockland where kids can jump, hop, leap and bounce to their heart’s content. Take note that these these spots also offer birthday parties, making them an option for those winter (or even extra-hot summer) birthdays. 

MLK Day Weekend with Westchester Kids: Brady Rymer, Snowshoe Hike

The coming three-day weekend is a great time to be in Westchester and the Hudson Valley! Our weekend picks include both indoor and outdoor activities ranging from celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr., to communing with nature or catching a show. 

Reinforce the meaning of MLK Day by investing time at conscience-raising event. The whole family can volunteer at Martin Luther King Day of Service. Promising performances include Brady Rymer and the Little Band That Could, but for FREE admission, Bubblemania is a pop-ular choice. Embrace the winter at Awosting Falls Snowshoe Outing or think warm thoughts (and get a jumpstart on summer planning) at Westchester Family’s Camp Fair.

There's more! Be sure to check our January GoList and our Event Calendar to plan your entire weekend—and beyond! (Need a drop-off activity on MLK Day? Check out our list of drop-off camps.) 

20 Things to Do with Westchester Preschoolers this Winter

Cold temperatures and snow on the ground doesn’t mean you have to spend the next few months stuck at home (and, let's face it, who would want to?). We’ve rounded up some of our favorite events and things to do with preschoolers in Westchester and the Hudson Valley this winter.  

Looking for more ideas? Check out our always-populated Event Calendar and sign up for our newsletters!

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