Lifestyle

Brain Drain: We rounded up some local resources to keep little minds occupied all season long

Hordes of Rhode Island children about to be sprung from the classroom (or the kitchen table for distance learners) and back into the sun. Since summer is a prime time for students to lose some of what they’ve learned, we’ve rounded up some fun and educational resources for the season.

Classes and Camps

Both Trinity Rep and the Gamm Theatre are offering drama classes and camps for kids this summer, but these spots tend to go the quickest. So if you’re considering it, stop reading this and go register. Additionally, Artists’ Exchange in Cranston offers theater classes, but also engages with other arts, such as drawing and ceramics. Festival Ballet in Providence is offering their dance camp as well, and always check out local dance studios in your area because they typically offer camps. 

And in things that you wish you could have done as a kid but didn’t: Casey’s Farm in Aquidneck and Pat’s Pastured in East Greenwich are offering summer farm camps and days so children can learn more about farming and agriculture. These also are filling up fast, so reach out immediately. 

The great thing about Rhode Island is that there’s a camp or class for nearly everything. If you’re still deciding on camps, I highly recommend RISummerCampGuide.com

Museums

There are a number of museums that are opening their doors this summer, and at the time of this printing, most are remaining as distanced as possible. Be sure to check out the Rhode Island Museum of Art and Science, which is open with appointments and offers take-home kits for kids to do activities. Plus, you can book programming through them if you have a large enough group. The Providence Museum and Planetarium is also open from 10am – 3pm Friday through Monday. And if you’re up for a drive from the city, Newport has the Newport Art Museum, as well as the Mansions, with the Green Animals Topiary Garden welcoming visitors. 

Also, please note that your summer trip to the Providence Children’s Museum might have to be delayed a while longer. They are going to be closed through July 8. 

Virtual or Socially Distanced 

For those of you who don’t foresee sending your kids to camp this summer, there are still a number of resources out there. Try GoProvidence, the website of the Providence & Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau, who has an entire page dedicated to free online resources, including Rhode Island Coloring Sheets and educational resources from Providence landmarks like the RISD museum and the Providence Athenaeum. 

Speaking of the RISD Museum and the Providence Athenaeum, the museum is offering virtual drawing for families, and the Athenaeum is doing take-home craft kids for members. 

Libraries

With so many libraries in Rhode Island, they are the biggest asset to parents of the newly out-of-school. Summer reading clubs abound with prizes and raffle drawings for kids (and sometimes adults) with many libraries doing outdoor and virtual storytimes. You can find out more at your local library’s website or by going to www.oslri.org

There are so many resources out there to slow the information lapse kids get every summer. Keep your eyes out for additional activities, and get out there safely this summer. 

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