Archive For The “Art, Music & Theater” Category

Beat Bugs Toys & Netflix Show Introduce Youngsters to The Beatles

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Disclosure: We were provided a sample in exchange for an honest review. As always, the opinions and content expressed herein are strictly our own. This post contains affiliate links.

Adorable bug characters, called the Beat Bugs, are introducing a new generation of kids to The Beatles and their iconic music. Beat Bugs is a Netflix original series, starring 5 adventurous bugs friends. As they explore their environment and curiosities, Beatles songs are woven into the storyline, creating a catchy and innovative way to keep The Beatles alive. Just as innovated, are the creative playset for children to make their own adventures with the Beat Bug friends. Playsets play 3 different Beatles songs and have a variety of characters to play with.

Below, check out Victoria’s review of the Yellow Submarine toy, which you will also find in our Holiday Gift Guide for this year. There are several playsets, each playing different songs from the famous band, covered by other famous sings such as Rod Stewart, Pink, Sia and more. The Netflix original series is surely one to check out.

For more holiday gift suggestions, please visit our Holiday Gift Guide by clicking below:

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Creating Really Awesome FREE Things with C.R.A.F.T Book Review

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Thank you Jamie Dorobek for providing us with this review copy of CRAFT. #Sponsored This post may contain affiliate links and as always the opinions expressed herein are strictly my own.

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We’re almost returning to the never-ending school projects, book reports and group assignments that Back to School brings. Yay! NOT. Even for someone who really gets into the differing projects… it can be a lot of work and money pulling them together. Sometimes you just need down to Earth activities that don’t cost an arm and a leg. Free would be nicer yet. Jamie Dorobek’s book C.F.A.F.T. is very helpful when we’re needing inspiration for these school projects. Using everyday items like Q-Tips and shoelaces, she offers 100 craft ideas that can be done on a shoestring budget. C.R.A.F.T. stands for Creating Really Awesome FREE Things. Does it get better than that???

CRAFT book

The fall brings more than returning to school. Any Scout parent knows that. Well, this handy craft idea book, provides plenty of resourceful ideas to be created at the camp site, meeting house or even down by shore for those late summer vacationers. Check out these adorable toilet paper tube critters:

CRAFT Animal crafts

A couple of my favorite crafts include the Peacock from page 60 and the Paper Plate Owl on page 20. Of course the watch is a great craft for parents assisting their kids in telling time. All good stuff. In fact I’ve got the materials ready for our Girl Scout meeting to make the Egg Carton Flowers from page 54 and the fall leaves on page 58.

With badges designed around learning about animals and Science classes focused on environment, habitat and animal classification, the many animal projects in this resource could be beneficial. Fun crafting made really easy with step by step instructions with pictures.

CRAFT Book Review Pic

My favorite part of this resource is the misc trivia that pops up on many pages, providing educational insight while you craft or peruse the book. Any good resource will have a great indexing feature… here you will find the Table Of Contents utilized in a rather unique fashion in that Jamie Dorobek itemized projects by the rooms in which you will find the supplies. For example bathroom for Q-Tips or garage for golf balls. Brilliant.

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Children’s Art Exhibit & Hands-On Program: Art Splash

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While this article is sponsored by the Philadelphia Museum of Art by way of complimentary program admission, the opinions expressed herein are strictly my own. #sponsored

Creative – Engaging – Inspiring: Art Splash

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More colorful than ever, Art Splash returns at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in the Perelman Building. Expect the same hands-on kid-friendly programs, tours and crafts as years past in this spacious and well-lit venue.

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This year’s Art Splash program was inspired by Africa.  Everything from the contemporary photography to bronze sculptures and mask… the artistic African culture is present.  In true Art Splash form, children (and their adults) are welcome to a variety of art projects based on the five exhibit areas:

Look Again – Contemporary Perspectives on African Art “A major exhibition drawn from the collection of the Penn Museum” – Phila Museum of Art, Press Release July 2016

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Vlisco – African Fashion on a Global Stage ” Explores the celebrated company’s most enduring designs, examines the process of creating a new textile, and showcases a selection of contemporary fashions by African and European makers as well as Vlisco’s in-house design team” – Phila Museum of Art, Press Release July 2016

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Threads of Tradition “Focuses on traditional patterns in West and Central African textiles and the techniques used to create them, including strip weaving, resist dyeing, piecing, applique and embroidery” – Phila Museum of Art, Press Release July 2016

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Three Photographers/Six Cities “Presents an in-depth look at three photographers who create powerful pictures of six African Cities: Cairo, Egypt; Nairobi, Kenya; Lagos, Nigeria; Johannesburg, South Africa; and Bamako and Tombouctou (Timbuktu), Mali.” “The images offer unique perspectives on contemporary African experience” – Phila Museum of Art, Press Release July 2016

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Architecture of Francis Kere – Building For Community “Features a site-specifi, immersive environment designed by this world=renowned Burkina-Faso-born architect” – Phila Museum of Art, Press Release July 2016

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The studio space is certainly accommodating with vaulted ceilings and plenty of sunlight. Sunlight casts a vibrant glow on the most colorful exhibit, “Colorscape” (See above picture) and of course, no art studio would be complete without workshop space for crafting.

African inspired Crafts

The Art Splash program runs through September 5, 2015 and offers many components: art studio projects, interactive exploration, book signings and festivals. There is so much to consider that I suggest bookmarking the Museum’s Art Splash page to get all the details. Here is the general schedule:

 

July 1 – 10 Travel
July 11 – 24 Design
July 25 – August 7 Build
August 8 – 21 Print
August 22 – Sept 5 Sculpt

 

Family Festivals & Art Workshops. The Sight & Sound festival is being held on August 7 (10 AM to 5 PM) with award singers, musicians and dancers, as well as, the Liberian Women’s chorus. Pay what you wish and perfect for all ages. Their music inspires and promotes change and social justice. Family Art Workshops are being offered July 16 & 23 for Design & Sew; July 30 & August 6 Sound Structures, and August 13 & 20 for Light Prints. Registration is required and classes are in addition to museum admission prices.

And there’s more… Family Art Cart, Splash Studio and Family Tours, all enhance your visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Highly suggested, entertaining and educational Early Bird or Art Explorers family tours are available for the youngest explorers. These tours take you on a path through the exhibits to introduce children to pieces of art through discussion, music, drawing, story and more. Having been on a many of their  tours, I must say these are definitely a highlight to our summer visits to Art Splash.

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The Philadelphia Museum of Art is located at 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA. 215-684-7840

“Evolving year over year but always true to being educational, creative and engaging for families, not just children.” H@H 2015

Be sure to add this to your summer plans.

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Matilda the Musical – Academy of Music

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Thank you Kimmel Center for supporting Homeroom At Home and our mission. This is a sponsored article whereby we were provided tickets to the show and attended a promotional party.

Matilda flyerNothing like a little rebellion to get some kids’ attention. And so be it… along with the perfect children’s Broadway performance: Matilda The Musical. If it takes a little sass to get children interested in the theater arts… well, I’m all for it. This fun musical comes with some super catchy (parents be warned) sassy songs.

20151118_113502Matilda The Musical is based off of Roald Dahl’s children’s book, Matilda. As summarized by The Guardian the story is “about a smart, easily infuriated little girl who is misunderstood by her parents and loathed by the school’s headmistress. On the other hand her kind and generous teacher, Miss Honey, thinks she is a brilliant academic genius. Matilda has a number of excellent schemes in her head to teach her nasty parents and headmistress a lesson.” Roald Dahl is known for his quirky, imaginative humor that keeps children engaged. I was excited to find this story on our book shelf for a later read (recommended for ages 7-11). By the way, love the review on Kids’ Book Reviews for this title… so be sure to check it out too. And speaking of checking things out, click below for a quick recap of Matilda the Musical.

My daughter and I are looking forward to the Broadway performance of Matilda The Musical, singing all the way there. The performance is held at the Academy of Music from Nov 17th through the 29th. Tickets are discounted 35% using QUIET as the promo code.

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Art Splash – Interactive Family-Friendly Children’s Art Program at Philadelphia Museum of Art

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While this article is sponsored by the Philadelphia Museum of Art by way of complimentary program admission, the opinions expressed herein are strictly my own. #sponsored

Creative – Engaging – Inspiring:  Art Splash

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Art Splash is back for a third year… bigger and better than ever. We’ve had the privilege of attending this amazingly organized family art program each year. Evolving year over year but always true to being educational, creative and engaging for families, not just children.

Art SplashThis year’s program design is no disappointment with a new space in the former library, featuring a super cozy art lounge – perfect for reading, cuddling and building with blocks. drawing on blackboardThe Art Splash studio also features a huge wall chalkboard, allowing children to express their creativity and build off each others’ designs. And of course, no art studio would be complete with out workshop space for creating artistic projects.

Professionally executed, this Art Splash program has it all… a little something for everyone. This year’s theme was inspired by the children’s book A is for Art Museum, showcasing the alphabet through various famous pieces of art. This book has proven to be a successful concept in engaging children in art and has become the perfect backdrop for the newly created exhibition A is for Art Museum located adjacent to the Art Splash Studio.

 

The Art Splash program runs through September 7, 2015 and offers many components: art studio projects, interactive exploration, book signings and festivals. There is so much to consider that I suggest bookmarking the Museum’s Art Splash page to get all the details. Here are the highlight:

tablet pose with viaA is for Art Museum App. Guests can borrow a tablet from the Art Splash Studio equipped with an interactive and highly engaging self-tour tool. This app features art for each letter of the alphabet using way-finding technology to enable families to further explore the museum. art splash tabletThe tablets are protected in a sturdy hand-held case, designed for little one to carry. As you use the interactive map to find your way through the alphabet (not recommended to go ABC order, btw) the app will automatically sense when guests arrive in the room, offering a picture of the featured art piece for that letter. Families will then have clues, stories, history, activities, audio, etc elements to accompany the art. It’s all part of the adventure of discovering and “unlocking” the masterpiece art on display and participating as a family.  Brilliant.

art splash t is for treeA is for Art Museum Exhibition. Again inspired by children’s book by the same name, co-authored by Marla Shoemaker and Katy Friedland. The exhibit has three main sections: A for Animals, R is for Rivers and T is for Trees. Hands-on activities encourage children to get up close, pay closer attention to the details and offer their own creativity within the exhibit. a is for artMagnetic fabric leaves on a giant tree correspond with several pieces of artwork featuring nature and trees. Children are asked to select a leaf and match the color/pattern in the artwork adjacent to the mural tree. Hands-on activities such as these really embrace children’s tactical needs. No longer are all art museums consider “no touch”.

Splash Studio. “Let you creativity soar at the Splash Studio with new art projects throughout the summer.” (Press Release, Philadelphia Museum of Art)

June 30 – July12 R is for River
July 14 – 26 U is for Up Close
July 28 – August 9  T is for Trees
August 11 – 23  S is for Shadows
August 25 – Sept 7  A is for Animals

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Family Festivals & Art Workshops. The Great Outdoors festival is being held on August 2 (10 AM to 5 PM) with the Okee Dokee Brother’s playing at 11:30 AM and 1:30 PM. Seating is limited so get there early. There music inspires children and parents to go outside and be creative. Family Art Workshops are being offered July 18 & 25 for Painting Up Close; August 1 & 8 Clay Creatures and August 15 & 22 for Nature Prints. Registration is required and classes are in addition to museum admission prices.

Art Splash Author & Illustrator Series. “Your favorite children’s books come to life in this interactive series. Mingle with the authors and illustrators, and enjoy inspiring readings.” (Press Release, Philadelphia Museum of Art)

July 15 – Flotsam by David Wiesner
August 26 – Wolfie the Bunny by Anne Dyckman & Zachariah Ohora

Family Tours. Highly suggested, entertaining and educational Early Bird or Art Explorers family tours. These tours take you on a path through the museum to introduce children to pieces of art through discuss, music, drawing, story and more. Having been on a couple of tours, I must say these are definitely a highlight to our summer visits to Art Splash.

Art Splash 2015The Philadelphia Museum of Art is located at 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA. 215-684-7840

 

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Cake Art by Amy is Combining Cupcakes with Creativity and Characters

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Wow just WOW – I had the best cupcake of my life.

Seriously.The.Best

Peachy KeenPeachy Keen by Cake Art by Amy… check out all of her amazing flavors this month but, for me, this one takes the cake. HA.  Photo courtesy of Cake Art by Amy.

Now in fairness, I didn’t just stumble upon Amy and her super cute bakery/studio… I was invite to a media Girls’ Night Out cupcake decorating class. This is a sponsored post with Cake Art by Amy. All opinions are strictly my own! #CupcakeswithAmy”

Amy of Cake Art by Amy

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

So what does Peachy Keen, the most amazing cupcake have to do with this blog and children’s education… not much really, but I couldn’t mention Cake Art by Amy and NOT mention this cupcake. That said, there is definite value in baking and decorating to include sequencing, balance and geometry. It goes without saying that Cake Art by Amy is not your typical bakery. Sure you can phone in a cake order, stop by to fix a craving or order two dozen cupcakes for a classroom party, but

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

Amy’s vision for her shoppe is to be a place of gathering… and learning. She offers a host of social gatherings and classes, including the cupcake decorating one I attended. Although Amy is amazingly talented (check out her gallery) her strength lies in her ability to effortlessly instruct others in decorating techniques. And while she has her designs prepared in advance and takes the guests step-by-step, she also encourages individual creativity and variances on the designs. #LoveIt

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

There is so much value in offering children a creative outlet. Cake Art by Amy is just another artistic venue for such. Consider the educational value when learning both baking and decorating techniques. But if I’m being honest, it was the Storytime & Sweets program that attracted me to Cake Art by Amy.  Children can enjoy a

story, game, craft and cupcake decorating as part of this program. The cost is only $15 per event and more information can be obtained by visiting Cake Art by Amy.

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

Photo courtesy of A Grande Life

Again, while this event and post were sponsored by Cake Art by Amy, I truly enjoyed the decorating class, the cupcake samples (especially Peachy Keen) and very much look forward to bringing my daughter to a July Storytime & Sweets event. I wished we lived a bit closer to consider Cake Art by Amy for birthday parties… this truly would be a treat for all party guests. Thank you Stephanie of A Grande Life for organizing this event and providing images.

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Annie on Broadway Philadelphia

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A BARGAIN for Broadway… 50% off coupon code for Annie at the Philadelphia Broadway Show March 17th, 18th and 19th at the Academy of Music, Philadelphia.

Broadway Philadelphia present Annie

There is just nothing like live theater!!  Check out Annie, an American classic at the Academy of Music. 

Save 50% on select tickets to ANNIE with promo code SANDY*.

 https://tickets.kimmelcenter.org/APO/apo.aspx?apo_no=SANDY

 * Discount available on select Family Circle and Amphitheatre seats for the Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evening performances of ANNIE. Offer not valid on previously purchased tickets and may not be combined with any other offer. ALL SALES FINAL. No exchanges or refunds. Offer may be revoked without notice. Limit 8 tickets per person. Additional fees will apply.

 

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Avoiding the Summer Brain Drain with Art & Van Gogh

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Continue with us as we explore fine art and famous artists this summer as part of the Summer Family Fun Series. This week, let’s have a closer look at Vincent Van Gogh. Here’s one of many of his self portraits… you’ll note that he doesn’t smile in portraits.

Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van Gogh

His biography details a lonely and short lived life but his legacy shall live on forever.  Click on the image for additional facts about Vincent Van Gogh and continue below for more ways to bring this master artists to life today.

Do you remember Make Van Gogh’s Bed from last week’s Summer Family Fun article?  This fun story features textures for children to touch in the artwork and features two of Van Gogh’s famous artworks: “Van Gogh’s Bedroom at Aries” and “The Starry Night”.  And while speaking of touching art, here’s a free interactive “Touch Van Gogh” app to get behind the scenes in the featured painting. Below, check out the video tribute to Van Gogh – it is beautiful and showcases the lyrics for “Starry Starry Night” to honor “The Starry Night” painting and his amazing talent.

A very clever resource is Who Can Save Vincent’s Hidden Treasure? featuring a unique way for children to explore Van Gogh’s art. The book comes with a decoder, letters to his brother, Theo and map for an adventure back in time to explore Van Gogh’s world and studio.

Click here for an interactive kid-friendly informative tool.  Learn about his drawings and technique. For a little nonsense fun, check out this little game.  And for something a bit more engaging… try this online puzzle of “The Starry Night”.

This post was not sponsored. The ideas and opinions expressed herein are strictly mine own.

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