Like many of you (at least I HOPE I’m not the only one) our summer has been a bit…. trying. Not only are San Antonio summers hotter than Hades (and I’ve lived in Arizona!) the current pandemic makes for fewer safe, easygoing options for summertime fun. Most playgrounds are closed, community pools are either closed, or operating at a reduced capacity, amusement parks are closed (for good reason, of course), and it seems like the commplace summertime boredom is even more pronounced in 2020.
That’s why I’m SO glad I read through a newsletter I recently got in my inbox for Hulafrog– a website/blog all about fun things to do in San Antonio (or whatever town you live in!) I somehow came across Hulafrog last year when we moved here to San Antonio last year, and it’s seriously chock full of stuff to do with your kids- many of which are free or inexpensive, fun, educational, outdoorsy, artistic… and everything in between. They’ll tell you everything that’s going on during any given day, have a calendar of local events, and great little blog articles. They also have directories of local professionals serving families! Take a look at their photographers directory- SLP is now listed! 🙂
Anyway, though I don’t love having an email inbox overrun with messages and newsletters, the one from Hulafrog is one I actually read! (No, I don’t get anything from them for recommending them- I just think they always have SUCH great info for families! Plus it’s something fun to share here on my blog.) 🙂 Which is why I wanted to tell you about coolest thing I just learned from their most recent newsletter….. an online learning platform called Outschool.
Where. has. this. been. all. my. life ? ! ?
From what I gathered by (ironically) spending an hour neglecting my children to browse through their classes in search of things to enrich my children 😆, Outschool is an online learning website that offers online “classes” or workshops for kids- created and taught by background-checked adults- many of whom are teachers, and many others who are simply parents, professionals, or experts in their field. I’ve seen workshops teaching kids how to make healthy snacks taught by moms, a class all about sharks taught by a young man working in the zoo/aquarium industry, a into to veterinary medicine taught by a certified Vet Tech, a cooking class taught by a young women who loves Asian cuisine- the choices are limitless. (Seriously- I started browsing and never got to the end of the page!)
Most workshops seems to be about an hour long- some longer, some shorter. Some are a one-time class, others are 6 weeks long- “meeting” once a week. The workshops are held on Zoom (I believe) and you can even find a class as soon as this afternoon. And the best part (I think) is the cost. SO MANY of the classes I looked into for my kiddos were around $10! A lot in the $12-$15 range, some even $7. Of course, there were classes offering far more in-depth subject matter or ran for several sessions that had a much higher cost, but so many options are affordable enough you could sign up and your kiddos could learn a new fun skill TODAY.
And No, I don’t get anything from Outschool by writing this post, either! (Though if they’re reading this- I I’d have no problem with that!) 😉 I just know that missing almost four months of school leading into a stay-at-home summer has made our kids really eager for a change of pace. And it’s made me worn out from trying to find things for them to pass the time and keep their brains relatively sharp for the upcoming school year. So, I’m so excited that I found a 2-session class for only $16 called “Sharks- Misunderstood Apex Predators” for my shark-loving 6th grade daughter, and a $10 class called “Minecraft Mania! Intro to Fractions with Minecraft Characters!” for our 3rd grader (who is straight-up obsessed with Minecraft.) Another one I plan to sign them both up for?
“Engineering Design Challenge- Solar Oven S’mores!” Kids learn how to create a solar oven and test it out to cook a s’more! Perfect for San Antonio sunny days!
Though normally I’d be reluctant to spend $15 for one 30-60 minute online activity for our kids, during a pandemic and after missing 4 months of school? I’ll do it in a heartbeat. I think it’s a great way for them to interact with an adult other than myself, a fun thing to anticipate and get excited about, and a sneaky way to keep their minds sharp over the summer. Plus, I’ll feel like I’m doing something good for them… getting rid of that mom guilt is essential to our well-being!
I just can’t get over how cool all these little classes are! Take a look at some others:
- Bake and Beatbox: Make Delicious Banana Bread and Learn to Beatbox!
- Lego Architecture: Bridges
- Pablo Picasso and How to draw a cubist picture
- American History: The Civil rights Movement for Tweens
- ASL and Music Club
- Minecraft: Finding Area and Perimeter
- Conversational Cantonese Club
- Around the World in 21 Days: Cook-Along Camp: Latin Session
- Financial Literacy for Kids
- Crochet Camp
Aren’t these the greatest?? I especially love the Make-Banana-Bread-and-Learn-to-Beatbox one! 😆 Most of these are for kids 8-11 (the age of my kiddos). Yet there are even more for tweens and high-schoolers! Take a look!
I hope this will be a huge lifesaver for parents at their wits’ end this summer. Share in the comments if you find any classes that your kids love!