2020 Summer Camp Directory: Adapted & Virtual Summer Camps & Programs

Virtual Summer Programs

Adapted In-Person Programs

Add Your Camp/Program


Hilltown Families Summer Directory is Sponsored by:

100+ Suggested Learning Ideas, Events & Resources for July 11-17, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 10,000 opt-in subscribers and over 2.7 million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover learning ideas and community-based educational opportunities to explore at home and outdoors this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

NOW OPEN!

New England “OPEN” Air Museum reopens indoor & outdoor exhibit spaces! The New England Air Museum is the largest aviation museum in New England with 3 large hangars, outdoor exhibits, and 100+ aircraft ranging from early airships & flying machines to supersonic jets & helicopters. Open every day from 10am-3pm with public programs and activities ongoing in socially distanced style. With 90,000 square feet of aircraft hangars and wide-open hangar doors, there is no better place to go for safe, socially distanced fun. The outdoor space will remain open with 10 aircraft, and visitors can see another 50 aircraft indoors, plus dozens of engines and exhibits on various aspects of aviation history. The entire museum has been cleaned and sanitized with daily cleaning protocols to ensure the health & safety of all. Admission: $16/adults; $10/children 4-14yo; Free for ages 3 & under and Veteran. Located at 36 Perimeter Road in Windsor Locks, CT.

Online

Online Program Jul 27-Aug 14

Berkshire Music School – Rock On(line) & OnStage LIVE! Online/Pittsfield, MA. BMS brings its most popular summer camps online! For youth 11-15, OnStage LIVE helps young singers free their voice through sessions focused on choosing repertoire, building stage presence, and working with a pre-recorded track. It’s the perfect opportunity for singers to prepare for auditions & theatrical performances. (July 27-31). Geared towards high school and college-age musicians, Rock On(line): Solid Gold Solos gives students the chance to tackle that solo they’ve always dreamed of playing with masterclasses, group instrument lessons, and workshops in songwriting and theory/composition. The program culminates in an online performance opportunity. (Session 1: Aug. 3-7 & Session 2: Aug. 10-14.) Private lessons are also available. Dates: Jul 27-Aug 14; Age Range of Participants: 11-21yo. Contact: 413-442-1411. smoderski@berkshiremusicschool.orgwww.BerkshireMusicSchool.org

ADVERTISE HERE: Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of readers in Western MA who are committed to their community and willing to support one another in times of need. In-person and virtual event organizers, local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals are encouraged to reach out to find out about our affordable advertising options and marketing packages. To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED LEARNING IDEAS,
RESOURCES, & EVENTS
July 11-17, 2020

Saturday, July 11Sunday, July 12
Monday, July 13Tuesday, July 14Wednesday, July 15
Thursday, July 16Friday, July 17

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural Itinerariesen Español


Online and in-person events and resources shared below are done so as a courtesy and not as an endorsement. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm information, age appropriateness, registration requirements, safety protocols, and associated costs.

Read the rest of this entry »

July 4-10, 2020: What do you want to learn today?


SUGGESTED LEARNING IDEAS
+ EVENTS & RESOURCES
July 4-10, 2020

4th of JulyHumanitiesU.S. HistoryAmerican RevolutionDeclaration of IndependenceFrederick DouglassFirework HistorySummer FoodsBBQFood SciencePicnicsCultural StudiesCulinary ArtsFood HistorySandwichesPotato ChipsPopsiclesFruitsSTEMCitizen ScienceNeuroscienceChemistryPyrotechnicsMaillard ReactionConvection CurrentsManufacturingMeteorologyThunderstormsCloudsWeatherFolkloreEntomologyBenthic MacroinvertebratesMetamorphosisDragonfliesAntsWomen’s StudiesWomen’s RightsSocial IssuesArt StudiesWatercolor PaintingSketchingOrigamiTheater StudiesMechanical TheaterBehind the ScenesCostume DesignRehearsals


SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peak of our newest podcast!

HFVS 4th of July Episode with Guest DJ, Frank Gallo of Rolie Polie Guacamole (Radio Show/Podcast)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS 4th of July Episode
with Guest DJ, Frank Gallo of Rolie Polie Guacamole (Radio Show/Podcast)

In this episode of the Hilltown Family Variety Show, Rolie Polie Guacamole’s Frank Gallo guest hosts a 4th of July party. The show features songs from Rolie Polie Guacamole album, Avocado, along with a mix of kindie music favorites and classic American folk-rock songs of the 60’s. – RoliePolieGuacamole.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
July 4th & 5th, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

 

Featured Video: “Avocado” by Rolie Polie Guacamole


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Rolie Polie Guacamole – “Basketball Jane” [Avocado]
  • Katie Ha Ha Ha – “We Got the Beat” [single]
  • Dean & Frank – “In the Garage” [single]
  • Dog On Fleas – “Can Do Additude” [I am an Optimist]
  • Okee Dokee Brothers – “Raise A Rukus” [Songs for Singin’]
  • Mil’s Trills – “Make Some Noise” [Ridiculous Nonsense]
  • Rolie Polie Guacamole-“A Very Quiet Song” [Avocado]
  • Brady Rymer -“Your Love Turns the World Around” [Press Play]
  • Lou Gallo – “Struggle Song” [I’m Home]
  • Kate Vereau – “Nightride Home” [Into Midnight]
  • Dog On Fleas – “Peace will Come” [When I Get Little]
  • Okee Dokee Brothers – “Hope Machine” [Songs for Singin’]
  • Rolie Polie Guacamole “This Land is Your Land” [Chips and Salsa]
  • Joni Mitchell “California” [Blue]
  • Rolie Polie Guacamole “Running Through America” [Triathlon]
  • Dog On Fleas – “Sunny Day Song” [I am and Optimist]
  • The Mamas and the Papas “California Dreaming” [Greatest Hits]
  • Joni Mitchell Big Yellow Taxi” [Ladies of the Canyon]

100 Suggested Learning Ideas, Events & Resources for July 4-10, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 10,000 opt-in subscribers and over 2.7 million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover learning ideas and community-based educational opportunities to explore at home and outdoors this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

NOW OPEN!

New England “OPEN” Air Museum reopens indoor & outdoor exhibit spaces! The New England Air Museum is the largest aviation museum in New England with 3 large hangars, outdoor exhibits, and 100+ aircraft ranging from early airships & flying machines to supersonic jets & helicopters. Open every day from 10am-3pm with public programs and activities ongoing in socially distanced style. With 90,000 square feet of aircraft hangars and wide-open hangar doors, there is no better place to go for safe, socially distanced fun. The outdoor space will remain open with 10 aircraft, and visitors can see another 50 aircraft indoors, plus dozens of engines and exhibits on various aspects of aviation history. The entire museum has been cleaned and sanitized with daily cleaning protocols to ensure the health & safety of all. Admission: $16/adults; $10/children 4-14yo; Free for ages 3 & under and Veteran. Located at 36 Perimeter Road in Windsor Locks, CT.

Jul 6 – Aug 21

Online Courses

Summit View Learning Summer Math Courses. Online. Summit View Learning can help individuals or small groups of students learn math well in an online setting. They offer personalized instruction with a focus on conceptual understanding and deep long term learning. Whether helping to prepare for school in the fall or accelerating math learning generally, SVL’s 4-week summer courses are customized to meet the needs of all students. Their summer courses include 8 one-hour virtual (real-time) lessons with their highly qualified and experienced instructors and optional hands-on activities that students can work on independently. Pricing: $350 for 1 student, $300/student for 2, $250/student for 3, $200/student for 4, contact them for groups over 4. Rolling admission accepted through July. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 21; Age Range of Campers: 9-18yo. Contact: 339-927-6191. jagron.svl@gmail.com. www.summitviewlearning.com/summer-math.


Online Program Now – Aug 14

Montessori School of Northampton Summer 2020 Virtual Programs. Online/Northampton, MA. Group classes w/individual lessons/instruction included. Half & full-day options offered. All virtual programs designed to balance engaging instructional content w/mindfulness for appropriate screen time intervals. For elementary & middle school students they offer online modules like Film & Videography, LEGO Engineering w/Play-Well TEKnologies, Social Justice Workshop, How to Make a Radio Play, Make Your Own Podcast, STEM Engineering, Ukulele instruction, Instrument Building, Dance, Visual Arts, Dungeons & Dragons, Graphic Novel/Comic Book Art, and Digital Animation & Coding workshops with Holyoke Codes. For 40+ years, MSN has offered engaging summer programs for children 18mo-8th grade in the tradition of Italian educator Maria Montessori. Dates: Jun 22-Aug 14; Age Range of Participants: 5-14yo. Contact: 413-563-4645. summer@northamptonmontessori.org. msn.coursestorm.com

Online Camp Now – Aug 28

Virtual Camp

GCC Summer Virtual STEAM Camps. Online. GCC has paired up with Black Rocket, a national leader in tech-education, to bring Virtual Summer STEAM Camps to kids ages 8-14. Taught live by teachers with expertise in STEAM, the online camps will run for 12 weeks. Offering courses on topics such as coding, game design, eSports, virtual reality, and more, Black Rocket’s camps invite students to engage in cutting-edge curriculum designed to encourage their imaginations & bring their ideas to life. Each week-long session is divided into 2 sections: 3-hour session in the morning for 8-11yo & 3-hours in the afternoon for 11-14yo. Virtual Campers will benefit from smaller break-out sessions with Black Rocket coaches and ongoing access to Black Rocket’s Creator Corps. Tuition starts at $149. Dates: Jun 8-Aug 28; Age Range of Campers: 8-14yo. Contact: 413-775-1661. colek@gcc.mass.edu. noncredit.gcc.mass.edu

Now Virtual!

Online Programs Jul 6 – 31

The Bement School Online Summer Programs. The Bement School is excited to offer remote summer enrichment opportunities for middle school-age students in the summer of 2020! Beginning in July, students will engage in academically-focused classes taught by Bement’s renowned faculty. Students will be challenged in small, specialized remote instruction with a focus on individual attention and skill-building that will allow participants to explore their passions or prepare for their upcoming school year. Each class will occur between July 6 and July 31 under a Monday-Friday model with instructor office hours available. Visit online to learn more! Dates: Jul 6-31; Age Range of Campers: 10-15yo. Contact: 413-774-7061 ♦ summer@bement.orgwww.bement.org/summer

Three virtual music programs this summer!

Jul 6 – Aug 16

Virtually Rock the Summer! Institute for the Musical Arts Rock the Summer 2020 to be held on-line. IMA’s on-line music programs offer girls & young women tools to confidently use computers to generate & share music that they create individually & together. Programs will utilize digital tools to enable students to work collaboratively on the development, home recording & virtual presentation of their music. IMA’s faculty is composed of seasoned musicians, producers & engineers, many of whom have been ground-breakers for women in the field of music. July 6-12 Explore Rock ‘n Roll, performance-based program for preteen girls 9–12yo; July 15-26 Rock ’n Roll Performance, designed for teen-aged girls 13-19yo; Aug 6-16 Recording, Engineering & Producing, designed for girls & young women 16-24yo. Programs culminate in virtual concerts/listening party. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 16; Age Range of Participants: Girls/Young Women 9-24yo. Contact: 413-268-3074. info@ima.org. www.ima.org

ADVERTISE HERE: Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of readers in Western MA who are committed to their community and willing to support one another in times of need. In-person and virtual event organizers, local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals are encouraged to reach out to find out about our affordable advertising options and marketing packages. To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED LEARNING IDEAS,
RESOURCES, & EVENTS
July 4-10, 2020

Saturday, July 4Sunday, July 5
Monday, July 6Tuesday, July 7Wednesday, July 8
Thursday, July 9Friday, July 10

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural Itinerariesen Español


Resources and opportunities below are shared as a courtesy. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm age appropriateness, registration requirements, and associated costs.

Read the rest of this entry »

June 27-July 3, 2020: What do you want to learn today?

HFVS Social Justice Songs with Guest DJ, Jesse Goldman of Moozika! (Radio Show/Podcast)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Social Justice Songs with Guest DJ, Jesse Goldman of Moozika! (Radio Show/Podcast)

This show explores songs about social justice. Drawing on his background as a community organizer and his years of experience as a children’s musician and educator, Jesse covers topics of unity, speaking up, protest, unfairness, bullying, racism, self-love, and empowerment. – www.moozika.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 27 & 28, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: Moozika! – Bubbles


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings – “This Land is Your Land” [Naturally]
  • Sweet Honey in the Rock; James Horner – “This Little Light of Mine” [Freedom Song – Television Soundtrack]
  • Moozika! – “Together” [Together]
  • Lucy Kalantari – “Una Gran Familia” [Hold Tight, Shine Bright]
  • Barbatuques – “Galo Cantou” [Ayú]
  • Vered – “Brothers and Sisters” [Songs for Sisters and Brothers]
  • Two Little Girls at March – “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Round”  [Freedom Songs: Selma, Alabama]
  • Sweet Honey in the Rock – “We Shall Not Be Moved” [Still the Same Me]
  • Ella Jenkins – “Wake Up, Little Sparrow” [Rhythms of Childhood]
  • Moozika! – “We are One” [Together]
  • Bobby Mcferrin – “Blackbird” (Live Version) [The Voice]
  • Gregory Porter – “Liquid Spirit” [Liquid Spirit]
  • Bob Marley & The Wailers – “Get Up, Stand Up” [Burnin’]
  • Mil’s Trills & Amelia Robinson – “This is My Body” [Ridiculous Nonsense]
  • Odetta – “Hit or Miss” [Odetta Sings]
  • Aretha Franklin – “Respect” [The Very Best Of]
  • African Cream Freedom Choir – “Shona Malanga” [Freedom Songs]
  • Sonia De Los Santos & Dan Zanes and Friends – “El Martillo” [Mi Viaje: De Nuevo León To The New York Island]
  • Nina Simone – “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free” [Silk & Soul]
  • Lucy Kalantari & the Jazz Cats – “The Peace Song” [All the Sounds]

80+ Suggested Events, Resources & Learning Ideas for June 27-July 3, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 10,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.7 million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational opportunities to explore at home this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

Online Program Jun 22-Aug 14

Montessori School of Northampton Summer 2020 Virtual Programs. Online/Northampton, MA. Group classes w/individual lessons/instruction included. Half & full-day options offered. All virtual programs designed to balance engaging instructional content w/mindfulness for appropriate screen time intervals. For elementary & middle school students they offer online modules like Film & Videography, LEGO Engineering w/Play-Well TEKnologies, Social Justice Workshop, How to Make a Radio Play, Make Your Own Podcast, STEM Engineering, Ukulele instruction, Instrument Building, Dance, Visual Arts, Dungeons & Dragons, Graphic Novel/Comic Book Art, and Digital Animation & Coding workshops with Holyoke Codes. For 40+ years, MSN has offered engaging summer programs for children 18mo-8th grade in the tradition of Italian educator Maria Montessori. Dates: Jun 22-Aug 14; Age Range of Participants: 5-14yo. Contact: 413-563-4645. summer@northamptonmontessori.org. msn.coursestorm.com

Online Camp Jun 8 – Aug 28

Virtual Camp

GCC Summer Virtual STEAM Camps. Online. GCC has paired up with Black Rocket, a national leader in tech-education, to bring Virtual Summer STEAM Camps to kids ages 8-14. Taught live by teachers with expertise in STEAM, the online camps will run for 12 weeks. Offering courses on topics such as coding, game design, eSports, virtual reality, and more, Black Rocket’s camps invite students to engage in cutting-edge curriculum designed to encourage their imaginations & bring their ideas to life. Each week-long session is divided into 2 sections: 3-hour session in the morning for 8-11yo & 3-hours in the afternoon for 11-14yo. Virtual Campers will benefit from smaller break-out sessions with Black Rocket coaches and ongoing access to Black Rocket’s Creator Corps. Tuition starts at $149. Dates: Jun 8-Aug 28; Age Range of Campers: 8-14yo. Contact: 413-775-1661. colek@gcc.mass.edu. noncredit.gcc.mass.edu

Now Virtual!

Online Programs Jul 6 – 31

The Bement School Online Summer Programs. The Bement School is excited to offer remote summer enrichment opportunities for middle school-age students in the summer of 2020! Beginning in July, students will engage in academically-focused classes taught by Bement’s renowned faculty. Students will be challenged in small, specialized remote instruction with a focus on individual attention and skill-building that will allow participants to explore their passions or prepare for their upcoming school year. Each class will occur between July 6 and July 31 under a Monday-Friday model with instructor office hours available. Visit online to learn more! Dates: Jul 6-31; Age Range of Campers: 10-15yo. Contact: 413-774-7061 ♦ summer@bement.orgwww.bement.org/summer

Three virtual music programs this summer!

Jul 6 – Aug 16

Virtually Rock the Summer! Institute for the Musical Arts Rock the Summer 2020 to be held on-line. IMA’s on-line music programs offer girls & young women tools to confidently use computers to generate & share music that they create individually & together. Programs will utilize digital tools to enable students to work collaboratively on the development, home recording & virtual presentation of their music. IMA’s faculty is composed of seasoned musicians, producers & engineers, many of whom have been ground-breakers for women in the field of music. July 6-12 Explore Rock ‘n Roll, performance-based program for preteen girls 9–12yo; July 15-26 Rock ’n Roll Performance, designed for teen-aged girls 13-19yo; Aug 6-16 Recording, Engineering & Producing, designed for girls & young women 16-24yo. Programs culminate in virtual concerts/listening party. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 16; Age Range of Participants: Girls/Young Women 9-24yo. Contact: 413-268-3074. info@ima.org. www.ima.org

Jul 6 – Aug 21

Online Courses

Summit View Learning Summer Math Courses. Online. Summit View Learning can help individuals or small groups of students learn math well in an online setting. They offer personalized instruction with a focus on conceptual understanding and deep long term learning. Whether helping to prepare for school in the fall or accelerating math learning generally, SVL’s 4-week summer courses are customized to meet the needs of all students. Their summer courses include 8 one-hour virtual (real-time) lessons with their highly qualified and experienced instructors and optional hands-on activities that students can work on independently. Pricing: $350 for 1 student, $300/student for 2, $250/student for 3, $200/student for 4, contact them for groups over 4. Rolling admission accepted through July. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 21; Age Range of Campers: 9-18yo. Contact: 339-927-6191. jagron.svl@gmail.com. www.summitviewlearning.com/summer-math.

ADVERTISE HERE: Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of readers in Western MA who are committed to their community and willing to support one another in times of need. Local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals in need of services are encouraged to reach out to find out about our affordable advertising options. Please send us an email to find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED LEARNING IDEAS,
RESOURCES, & EVENTS
June 27-July 3, 2020

Saturday, June 27Sunday, June 28
Monday, June 29Tuesday, June 30Wednesday, July 1
Thursday, July 2Friday, July 3

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural Itinerariesen Español


Resources and opportunities below are shared as a courtesy. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm age appropriateness, registration requirements, and associated costs.

Read the rest of this entry »

Hilltown Families Presents: The Tom Knight Show, “Wiggle Worm”

The Tom Knight Show: “Wiggle Worm”

Hilltown Families and western Massachusetts musician/artist, Tom Knight, have partnered up to offer a series of singing puppet shows for families at home, featuring puppets, songs, and dancing for all ages. In the season finale, Tom and the puppets try out some new moves while dancing to the Wiggle Worm. Allie and Henry learn to disco, waltz, twist, and many other dances.


ABOUT TOM KNIGHT

Tom Knight is a multimedia artist, based in Haydenville, MA.  He has been delighting children and their grown-ups with his original, interactive, musical puppet show since 1988 with a unique blend of musicianship and puppetry shows. With his release of five CD’s for children and over 900 performances at festivals, museums, and libraries across the country, Tom Knight’s show are always lively and engaging for an intergenerational audience.

ABOUT HILLTOWN FAMILIES PRESENTS

Hilltown Families presents is a program of Hilltown Families, a community-based education network serving all of western Massachusetts, partnering with local artists, performers, individuals, organizations, and small businesses in the delivery of educational and entertaining video content for families at home. Interested in participating? Send your proposal to swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.

June 20-26, 2020: What do you want to learn today?


SUGGESTED LEARNING IDEAS
+ EVENTS & RESOURCES
June 20-26, 2020

Summer SolsticeStrawberry MoonUMass SunwheelStonehengeMidsummerAstronomySwedish CultureFolk DanceFather’s DayGenealogyFamily HistoryWorld CultureIndiaKinshipFamily TreePoetryVista’s & BywaysWild OrchidsWoodland GardenButterfly GardenPYO FarmsStrawberry SeasonKitchen SciencePastry ArtsStrawberry JamNutritional AnthropologyNative American StudiesMythologyNolumbeka ProjectEthnobotanyEntomologyBiomimicryNature-Based LearningButterfliesSwallowtailsMothsLuna MothSummer SunHelioseismologySolar EnergySolar Science ExperimentDistillationSun PrintsNature-Based MathMathematical ReasoningGeometryHexagonsCrystalsMolecular Physics


SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peak of our newest podcast!

HFVS Caring for the Earth with Guest DJs, Ruth and Emilia (Radio Show/Podcast)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Caring for the Earth with Guest DJs, Ruth and Emilia (Radio Show/Podcast)

Award winning mother/daughter children’s duo Ruth and Emilia share their favorite songs about taking care of the environment. Listen in as they play songs about recycling, re-using, reducing, and planting trees and flowers to help mother earth stay healthy!

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 20 & 21, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: Emilia and Ruth celebrate Earth Day with their song, “We’re Goin’ Green” from their  album, Kokowanda Bay.


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  1. Mister G “Mundo Verde- Green World” (Mundo Verde-Green World )
  2. Ruth and Emilia “Little Kid With a Great Big Heart” (Kokowanda Bay)
  3. Mr. Eco “Litterbug”  (Hybrid Hip-Hop)
  4. Ruth and Emilia “We’re Goin’ Green” (Kokowanda Bay)
  5. 123 Andres “La Semilla” (Arriba Abajo)
  6. Young People’s Chorus of NYC “We Can Plant a Forest” (Mike Greenly and Jim Papoulis)
  7. Mr. Steve, the Music Man “Trees are the Hair of the Earth” (Earth Party)
  8. Ricky Kej “One With Earth Song” (The Definitive Collection)
  9. Hullabaloo “ King of the World” (Hey, Everybody! )
  10. Ruth and Emilia “Turn it Into Something New” (Kokowanda Bay)
  11. Tim Kubart “Part of the the Earth” (Tim Kubart and Drue Davis)
  12. Mr. Eco “Food Waste at Home?”  (Amazing Waste)
  13. Dave Kinnoin “Earth is Our Home”  (Daring Dewey )
  14. Sonia de los Santos “Esta Es Tu Tierra (Mi Viaje: De Nuevo León To the New York Island)
  15. Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights  “All the Animals”  (What a Zoo )
  16. Ruth and Emilia “The Food Chain”  (Kokowanda Bay)
  17. DARIA “We’ve Got the Whole World in Our Hands”  (DARIA Sings for Earth Day)

75+ Suggested Events, Resources & Learning Ideas for June 20-26, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 10,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.7 million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational opportunities to explore at home this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

Virtual Programs

Online Program Jun 22-Aug 14

Montessori School of Northampton Summer 2020 Virtual Programs. Online/Northampton, MA. Group classes w/individual lessons/instruction included. Half & full-day options offered. All virtual programs designed to balance engaging instructional content w/mindfulness for appropriate screen time intervals. For elementary & middle school students they offer online modules like Film & Videography, LEGO Engineering w/Play-Well TEKnologies, Social Justice Workshop, How to Make a Radio Play, Make Your Own Podcast, STEM Engineering, Ukulele instruction, Instrument Building, Dance, Visual Arts, Dungeons & Dragons, Graphic Novel/Comic Book Art, and Digital Animation & Coding workshops with Holyoke Codes. For 40+ years, MSN has offered engaging summer programs for children 18mo-8th grade in the tradition of Italian educator Maria Montessori. Dates: Jun 22-Aug 14; Age Range of Participants: 5-14yo. Contact: 413-563-4645. summer@northamptonmontessori.org. msn.coursestorm.com

Online Camp Jun 8 – Aug 28

Virtual Camp

GCC Summer Virtual STEAM Camps. Online. GCC has paired up with Black Rocket, a national leader in tech-education, to bring Virtual Summer STEAM Camps to kids ages 8-14. Taught live by teachers with expertise in STEAM, the online camps will run for 12 weeks. Offering courses on topics such as coding, game design, eSports, virtual reality, and more, Black Rocket’s camps invite students to engage in cutting-edge curriculum designed to encourage their imaginations & bring their ideas to life. Each week-long session is divided into 2 sections: 3-hour session in the morning for 8-11yo & 3-hours in the afternoon for 11-14yo. Virtual Campers will benefit from smaller break-out sessions with Black Rocket coaches and ongoing access to Black Rocket’s Creator Corps. Tuition starts at $149. Dates: Jun 8-Aug 28; Age Range of Campers: 8-14yo. Contact: 413-775-1661. colek@gcc.mass.edu. noncredit.gcc.mass.edu

Now Virtual!

Online Programs Jul 6 – 31

The Bement School Online Summer Programs. The Bement School is excited to offer remote summer enrichment opportunities for middle school-age students in the summer of 2020! Beginning in July, students will engage in academically-focused classes taught by Bement’s renowned faculty. Students will be challenged in small, specialized remote instruction with a focus on individual attention and skill-building that will allow participants to explore their passions or prepare for their upcoming school year. Each class will occur between July 6 and July 31 under a Monday-Friday model with instructor office hours available. Visit online to learn more! Dates: Jul 6-31; Age Range of Campers: 10-15yo. Contact: 413-774-7061 ♦ summer@bement.orgwww.bement.org/summer

Three virtual music programs this summer!

Jul 6 – Aug 16

Virtually Rock the Summer! Institute for the Musical Arts Rock the Summer 2020 to be held on-line. IMA’s on-line music programs offer girls & young women tools to confidently use computers to generate & share music that they create individually & together. Programs will utilize digital tools to enable students to work collaboratively on the development, home recording & virtual presentation of their music. IMA’s faculty is composed of seasoned musicians, producers & engineers, many of whom have been ground-breakers for women in the field of music. July 6-12 Explore Rock ‘n Roll, performance-based program for preteen girls 9–12yo; July 15-26 Rock ’n Roll Performance, designed for teen-aged girls 13-19yo; Aug 6-16 Recording, Engineering & Producing, designed for girls & young women 16-24yo. Programs culminate in virtual concerts/listening party. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 16; Age Range of Participants: Girls/Young Women 9-24yo. Contact: 413-268-3074. info@ima.org. www.ima.org

What would the summer be without a visit to Look Memorial Park, a place where families from all over the region visit to spend time together outdoors and in nature! Open daily 7am-sunset, the park has partially reopened their grounds including their water spray park (11am-4:30pm). Located at the rotary in Florence, the park now has a limited number of picnic sites available for rent (10 ppl. max), and vehicle entry into the park is only $5 on Mondays. Bathrooms & tennis courts are open; however, some attractions are still closed until further notice. Entry to the park is $10/vehicle. Free to walk in. Season passes are $50. Guests are asked to use hand sanitizer before and after play, maintain social distancing, do not wear a mask while in the water, and that children should be supervised at all times. For more info: 413-584-5457.

ADVERTISE HERE: Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of readers in Western MA who are committed to their community and willing to support one another in times of need. Local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals in need of services are encouraged to reach out to find out about our affordable advertising options. Please send us an email to find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED EVENTS,
RESOURCES & LEARNING IDEAS
June 20-26, 2020

Saturday, June 20Sunday, June 21
Monday, June 22Tuesday, June 23Wednesday, June 24
Thursday, June 25Friday, June 26

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural Itinerariesen Español


Resources and opportunities below are shared as a courtesy. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm age appropriateness, registration requirements, and associated costs.

Read the rest of this entry »

HFVS Father’s Day Episode with Guest DJ, Greg Lato (Radio Show/Podcast)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Father’s Day Episode with Guest DJ, Greg Lato (Radio Show/Podcast)

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 13 & 14, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: ‘Imaginary Friend’ (Spoken) and ‘Hi Gene’ written and performed by Greg Lato from the upcoming album, Create My Own World.


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Paul Simon – “Father and Daughter” [Surprise]
  • Tim McGraw – “Humble and Kind” [Damn Country Music]
  • Greg Lato – “What Daddies Do (I Will Be With You)” [Create My Own World]
  • Dan Fogelberg – “Leader of the Band” [The Innocent Age]
  • Greg Lato – “Create My Own World” [Create My Own World]
  • Dave Barnes – “Having Kids” [Who Knew It Would Be So Hard To Be Myself]
  • Zac Brown Band – “I’ll Be Your Man (Song for a Daughter)” [Jekyll and Hyde]
  • Greg Lato feat. Bill Harley – “Two Slow Snails” [Create My Own World]
  • John Mayer – “Daughters” [Heavier Things]
  • Kenny Chesney feat. Mac McAnally – “Down The Road” [Lucky Old Sun]
  • Loggins and Messina – “Danny’s Song” [Sittin’ In]
  • Dennis DeYoung – “Don’t Wait For Heroes” [Desert Moon]
  • Greg Lato – “Try” [Create My Own World]

Nature-Based Learning: Learning through the Lens of the Wild Orchid

“Writing professor Kyhl Lyndgaard finds that 19th-century attitudes about ‘Indian removal’ were echoed by a notable shift in the common names of native orchids.” This is the sentence that begins the article, “Taking Off the Moccasin Flower and Putting On the Lady’s Slipper,” published by Potash Hill, the magazine of Marlboro College. Using the Lady Slipper (sp. Cypripedium acaule), in which we’ve seen a “bumper crop” this year, as a catalyst for learning, let’s begin here, the renaming of native orchids and other plants. Learning about the history and origin of different native plant species names can support a wide variety of subjects, including Native American studies, U.S. history, ethnobotany, poetry, and ecology. In Lyndgaard’s article, these subjects are tied together by weaving a story about Indian Removal through poetry, history, and the renaming of the Moccasin Flower. Read the rest of this entry »

Hilltown Families Presents: “Hawley Street” with The Northampton Center for the Arts

The Northampton Center for the Arts : “Hawley Street”

Hilltown Families and The Northampton Center for the Arts have partnered up to offer a video series called “Hawley Street,” a cross between Sesame Street and an online variety show! Keeping artists and community connected, “Hawley Street” checks out what other creative folks in our neighborhoods are up to these days in this final episode.


ABOUT THE NORTHAMPTON CENTER FOR THE ARTS

“Hawley Street,” created by The Northampton Center for the Arts (NCFA) Program Director Kelly Silliman, is a production of the NCFA at 33 Hawley. NCFA provides affordable space for artists, performers, and educators while developing programming dedicated to arts education, multidisciplinary collaborations, and community connections. 33 Hawley is a project of the Northampton Community Arts Trust.

ABOUT HILLTOWN FAMILIES PRESENTS

Hilltown Families presents is a program of Hilltown Families, a community-based education network serving all of western Massachusetts, partnering with local artists, performers, individuals, organizations, and small businesses in the delivery of educational and entertaining video content for families at home. Interested in participating? Send your proposal to swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.

June 6-19, 2020: What do you want to learn today?

HFVS Día del Niño Episode with Guest DJ, Twinkle (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

Día del Niño Episode with Guest DJ, Twinkle

“It’s All about the Kids -Los Ninos” with Award-winning Peruvian-American bilingual kindie music phenomenon Twinkle. — http://www.twinkleandfriends.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 6 & 7, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: Mexico celebrates Children’s Day in the midst of the quarantine caused by COVID-19.


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Twinkle feat. Mista Cookie Jar – “Kidz Rock-Remix” [Just Dance]
  • Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band – “Los Ninos” [Made in LA]
  • The Not -Its! – “Kid of the Week” [Are You Listening?]
  • Recess Monkey -“Bravest Kid In the World” [Flying!]
  • Jazzy Ash- “Big Kid Now” [Ready!]
  • Genevieve Goings -“All Grown Up” [Do You Know ?]
  • Kim Wilde – “Kids In America” [Kim Wilde]
  • Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights – “Kids Place” [Good Egg]
  • Twinkle Time – “Dream Big” [Twinkle Time]
  • Mister G – “Luckiest Kid in the World” [Pizza for Breakfast]
  • The Laurie Berkner Band – “My Family -Dance Remix” [Laurie Berkner: The Dance Remixes]
  • The Not -It’s! -“Great To Be a Kid” [Tag, You’re It!]
  • Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band feat. Mista Cookie Jar – “Magic Believers” [Made in LA]
  • Secret Agent 23 Skidoo – “Make the Future” [Make Believers]
  • Andrew and Polly – “Forever Young” [Odds and Ends]
  • Alphabet Rockers – ” I’m Proud” [Rise Shine #Woke]
  • Mista Cookie Jar & the Chocolate Chips – “Inner Child Rock ” [Ultramagnetic Universal Love Revolution]
  • Twinkle Time – “It’s OK 2 Be Me” [Twinkle Time]

[Original broadcast: April 28 & 29, 2018]

100+ Ideas, Resources, & Virtual Events for Learning at Home in Western MA: June 6-19, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With nearly 10,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.6+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational opportunities to explore at home this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

Virtual Music Lessons

Michael Nix, NixWorks Music Lessons and Classes. Greenfield, MA. High-quality music lessons! Welcoming students in the Pioneer Valley and beyond. Michael Nix offers private instruction, classes, coaching for performers, and prep for college and performance auditions – serving the private instruction and home-school community since 1980. Friendly, fun, supportive lessons tailored to the interests and needs of the student. Guitar (Classical, Steel String, Electric), Banjo (5-String, Tenor), Mandolin, Uke, Composition, Theory. Group Classes offered when practical. Zoom, Skype, and other online platforms. References available. 413-772-0328. mnix@nixworks.com. www.NixWorks.com.

Virtual Classes & Summer Program

Drama Studio Summer Programs. Springfield, MA. The Drama Studio is a unique community where young people come to grow as artists, leaders, and individuals. Now offering a variety of virtual acting classes and theatre programs in a safe environment for ages 6-18, including: Stories on Stage, where students will gain character, voice and performance skills, and build expressive communication skills in a fun, exciting peer group. In Comedy Improv Jam, students will learn to think on their feet and activate imaginations. For teens: TeenScene Audio Plays – improvise, write and produce original one-act podcasts. Other classes: Songwriting, The Art of the Audition, Stage Management/Tech, and Yoga for Actors. No prior acting experience required. Summer enrollment now open! Space is limited. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 28; Age Range of Campers: 8-18yo. Contact: 413-739-1983. info@dramastudio.org. dramastudio.org/summer-programs

Each year, approximately 2 billion popsicles are sold worldwide. But where did the idea for this tasty treat come from? Find out in this TED-Ed lesson: How the popsicle was invented by Jessica Oreck. Support your learning about the history of the popsicle with a few tasting pops from Crooked Stick Pops! This local small businesses based out of Easthampton offers free home delivery while their shop is closed. Choose your pops here, or call, text, or email in your order. Cost: $3.50/pop (minimum order 10). FREE same day home delivery if ordered by 12noon. They have partnered with Holyoke Hummus Company to offer Dinner and Dessert Delivered! So be sure to inquire! Not ready for pops? No worries. They have online gift certificates available too.

Wishing you could visit the baby animals on the farm? The Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield has announced a controlled & limited opening starting Thurs, June 4, as part of the MA Phase 1 initiative. The Village will open its outdoor spaces to the public, including its beloved baby animals in fenced-in outdoor areas, Thursdays-Sundays, 10am–3pm in June. New measures are in place to ensure the safety of visitors and staff. In addition to seeing baby animals, guests can walk the outdoor paths through the 20-acre historic Village, and hike the one-mile Farm & Forest Trail. Maps & info about the historic buildings and heirloom gardens will also be available. Learn more about their Phase 1 opening and ongoing plans at hancockshakervillage.org.

Playing music is a physical as well as a mental process, encouraging careful listening and focus. One way to get our children interested in exploring sound, musical instruments, and creating music is by watching others perform. Students and alumni of Community Music School of Springfield will host a virtual Perform-A-Thon on their website and Facebook page on the afternoon & evening of Thurs, June 11. This is an excellent opportunity to invite your family to tune in and witness the beauty of musical expression that occurs every day at CMSS. This event will be streamed and hosted live with the support of Focus Springfield. It will help raise funds for CMSS’s financial aid & scholarship program, making music education accessible for all.


Historic Deerfield, a museum of early American life situated in an authentic 18th-century New England village in Deerfield, is a community-based educational resource that supports learning all year round. Subscribe to their eNewsletter, Dispatches from Historic Deerfield, where you can “Get Your Deerfield Fix” each week! Support interests in New England history & architecture, 1800’s cooking & baking, fashion & textile history, natural history, agriculture, and much more. Check-out their weekly blog posts, Maker Mondays, where their educators share learning activities you can do at home, including baking, journaling, and berry ink. Follow them on Facebook and check out their YouTube channel, too, for weekly virtual learning opportunities!

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art presents ART in PLACE: Social Distancing in the Studio, an online exhibition featuring artworks created by more than 20 leading picture-book artists during the global pandemic. Illustrator/author Mo Willems co-organized the exhibition with Ellen Keiter, The Carle’s chief curator. The curators hope the exhibition will provide solace to everyone counting on picture books during this challenging time. If you’ve been making art at home, they invite you to share it on social media, too: #CarleArtInPlace. Whether you’re making art or learning about art from home, The Carle is a treasured community-based resource in Western MA that support learning and creativity! Make a donation: www.carlemuseum.org/give.

Are you looking for a community-based educational resource to support music studies at home? Each week, the Springfield Symphony Orchestra (SSO) Homegrown Series delivers a new video to support virtual learning! Music students can hear from Maestro Rhodes, SSO musicians, youth orchestra musicians, SSO staff, and others. Their Homegrown Series includes videos that explore and demonstrate different genres of music, composers, and pieces. You can even learn about the different instruments with their virtual Musical Petting Zoo episode! Explore their series online and consider donating to their Musician’s Relief Fund to support SSO musicians whose livelihoods have been adversely affected by the current Covid-19 global pandemic.

PARTNER WITH HILLTOWN FAMILIES: Are you offering virtual classes or lessons? Are you facilitating online social, learning, or entertainment opportunities? Is your local business offering new ways for customer engagement? Partner with Hilltown Families in your online outreach, delivering your message to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers. Hilltown Families is committed to our community and supporting one another in times of need. Our sponsors and advertising partners allow us to keep delivering this community-based educational resource to our readers for free (since 2005!). Local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals are encouraged to reach out to find out about our new and exciting opportunities! Contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED RESOURCES &
LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
June 6-19, 2020

Saturday, June 6Sunday, June 7
Monday, June 8Tuesday, June 9Wednesday, June 10
Thursday, June 11Friday, June 12

Saturday, June 13Sunday, June 14
Monday, June 15Tuesday, June 16Wednesday, June 17
Thursday, June 18Friday, June 19

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural Itinerariesen Español


Resources and opportunities below are shared as a courtesy. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm age appropriateness, registration requirements, and associated costs.

Read the rest of this entry »

Nature-Based Learning: Learning through the Lens of Lilac

This week with Lilac as our point of entry, we’re getting curious and learning through the lens of food, cultural heritage, and habitat.

Now that we have turned the corner from May to June, notice the changes through your senses. Your senses can tell you what time of the year it is without even looking at a calendar. Just the sound the trees make as their young green leaves tussle together in the treetops when it’s breezy before a rainstorm is enough to signal the time of year. The next time there’s a wind, notice the sound of the trees. How does the sound differ from the winter months when the leaves are on the ground, or in the autumn when they are crisp and turning colors? Layer upon this dance between wind and leaves the changing soundscape of the birds, insects, and frogs, and you can observe what time of the year it is merely through sound. Invite your sense of smell to the table and the conversation deepens, accessing memories through the scent of blossoms, dirt, and summer rains.

LEARNING THROUGH THE LENS OF FOOD

Lilacs are in bloom right now, and unlike the intoxicating smell of Lily-of-the-Valley, which were in full bloom last week, the equally intoxicating scent of lilacs can be captured through taste. If you have access to Lilac blossoms growing safely away from the road and toxic chemicals, give these recipes a try while they are in bloom: Lilac honeyLilac cocktailsLilac waterLilac pavlovasLilac scones, and Lilac syrup. These recipes capture the essence of this flower and are delicious ways to compare and contrast the smell and flavor of other flowers, like lavender and violets. How does our sense of smell and taste combine? What biochemistry is involved with smell, and how does our brain receive information and translate it into memories and emotions? Check out these TED-Ed videos, “How do we smell?” to learn about the biochemistry, and “How to master your sense of smell” to discover the art of smelling. Between the two, learn how smell, taste, and memory are connected through the olfactory nerves.

LEARNING THROUGH THE LENS OF HABITAT 

Learning the scientific name of plants can lead us to learn about the historical context of a flower, it’s place within cultural heritage, and taxonomy. For instance, the scientific name for Lilac is Syringa vulgaris. Vulgaris is Latin for “common” (common Lilac), and the scientific name for Syringa is derived from the Greek word “syrinx” which means pipe. According to Wikipedia, “In classical Greek mythology, Syrinx was a nymph and a follower of Artemis, known for her chastity. Pursued by the amorous god Pan, she ran to a river’s edge and asked for assistance from the river nymphs. In answer, she was transformed into hollow water reeds that made a haunting sound when the god’s frustrated breath blew across them. Pan cut the reeds to fashion the first set of pan pipes, which were thenceforth known as syrinx.” Those reeds were the hollow branches of Lilac.

Word origin is one path to take when looking through the lens of habitat during the season of lilac blooms. Another path is towards the cultivation, propagation, and care for Lilac in your home garden. They’re pretty sturdy perennials that can live up to 100 years. If you ever see a large lilac bush oddly growing in the middle of a field, the chance is there was a farmhouse that once stood nearby. In this video, “The Dirt: Lilacs,” home gardeners can learn about caring for lilacs. It also can help strengthen your appreciation for lilac shrubs in the home gardens of others and within community accessible botanical gardens.

LEARNING THROUGH THE LENS OF CULTURAL HERITAGE

Lilac has a strong presence in our cultural heritage. You can see evidence in annual events that celebrate this fragrant shrub. While they are not taking place this year, festivals like the Lilac Festival in Rochester, NY, and Lilac Sunday at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University have marked the season with cultural celebrations.

Attendance to these festivals, close observation in your garden or nearby botanical garden, and review of lilac renditions by famous and contemporary artists can support multidisciplinary learning while strengthening a sense of place. Paintings to compare and contrast include, Lilacs in a Window by American artist Mary Cassatt and Lilac in the Sun by Claude Monet.

Photo credit: Lilac Infused Honey (c) Sienna Wildfield.


Nature-Based Learning with Curly Willow on the Westfield River. Nestled in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains on the east branch of the Westfield River, Curly Willow on the Westfield is an emerging space for the passionately curious. A convergence of mindfulness and community-based education. Member, Community-Based Education Network™.

Wildflowers & Honeybees in Art & Literature

Art and Reason

Jack-in-the-Pulpit. Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield

While exploring spring ephemerals, think about how these fleeting flowers have influenced artists across the centuries. Take, for instance, Jack-in-the-Pulpit, a common spring wildflower that can be seen in the deciduous woods of Western Massachusetts. It is native to the Northeastern United States and flowers from April to June. In 1930, artist Georgia O’ Keeffe created a series of 6 paintings of this flowering plant while on Lake George in New York. The National Gallery of Art owns five of these six paintings. Looking at the painting, how does the artist choose to represent the flower? Remember, this flowering plant is quite small; how does the artist create a sense of drama and intensity that may often be overlooked when coming across the plant on a woodland walk?

Are there any other wildflowers you can think of that have influenced artists? Take a moment to consider why flowers are so appealing to humans. Is our attraction to flowers emotional or practical? For the honeybee, flowers are a source of food. What do they signal for humans? Could it be for the same reason? Other reasons? Read the rest of this entry »

Hilltown Families on Mass Appeal: Home Schooling vs Remote Learning

Hilltown Families on Mass Appeal:
Home Schooling vs Remote Learning

Hilltown Families and Mass Appeal (a weekday, hour-long lifestyle program on NBC) have teamed up to offer a live monthly segment on WWLP 22News!  Each month, community-based education specialist and Hilltown Families’ Founder, Sienna Wildfield, joins Mass Appeal hosts to talk about ways to engage in your community while supporting the interests and education of your children (and yourselves!).

This monthly segment continued on Friday, May 29, 2020 with Sienna and Patrick discussing the differences between these past couple of months of remote learning and full time home schooling.

Click on the video below to view.


During this past couple of months of distant learning at home, families with children in public school have experienced virtual facilitated learning at home, where their education has been physically isolated from their school community, teachers, and peers on assigned subjects in which the student may or may not be interested, and within prescribed timeframes and school deadline that may or may not work for their family.

Home-based learning can look a lot different than remote learning from home. It can be facilitated by the parent (homeschooling) or self-directed by the student (unschooling), and based on the interests and needs of the student and their family. And it will look different from family to family, depending on several factors:

  • Family Values & Dynamics.
  • Lifestyle.
  • Where they live (rural, urban, suburban).
  • Community-based educational & personal resources in which they have access.
  • Time of year.
  • Interests of the child/family.
  • Learning styles.

Things to consider when supporting your child’s learning from home: Read the rest of this entry »

May 30-June 12, 2020: What do you want to learn today?

HFVS Food Episode with Guest DJ, Gunnar Madsen (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Food Episode with Guest DJ, Gunnar Madsen

From Beans to Pancakes to Egg Salad, all tastes are considered in week’s episode. Learn about how corn is in your car, your home, your clothes, and your medicines. Songs about sharing food, renting food, and even calling food will keep your toes tapping and your mouth watering. — www.GunnarMadsen.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
May 30 & 31, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: “From fairy gardens to garden towers, Walter Bracken STEAM Academy transformed its school grounds into a student-centered, garden-learning wonderland.”


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Cab Calloway – “Everybody Eats When They Come To My House” [Hi De Ho Man]
  • The Bobs – “Food To Rent” [Songs For Tomorrow Morning]
  • Chops – “I Like Cereal” [Ping Pong Playa Soundtrack]
  • They Might Be Giants – “John Lee Supertaster” [No!]
  • Gunnar Madsen – “I Am Your Food” [I Am Your Food]
  • Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention – “Call Any Vegetable” [Absolutely Free]
  • Dave Van Ronk – “One Meatball” [No Dirty Names]
  • Gunnar Madsen – “In My Soup” [I Am Your Food]
  • Lambert, Hendricks & Ross – “Farmer’s Market” [The Hottest New Group In Jazz]
  • Gunnar Madsen – “Egg Salad In The Sun” [I Am Your Food]
  • Harry Nilsson – “Coconut” [Personal Best: The Harry Nilsson Anthology]
  • The Presidents Of The United States Of America – “Peaches” [The Presidents Of The United States Of America: Ten Year Super Bonus]
  • Gunnar Madsen – “10,000 Pancakes” [I Am Your Food]
  • Monty Python – “Spam” [Monty Python Sings]

[Original broadcast: July 21 & 22, 2018]

Save

Save

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100+ Ideas, Resources, & Virtual Events for Learning at Home in Western MA: May 30-June 12, 2020

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With nearly 10,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.6+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational opportunities to explore at home this weekend and next week.

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!
Sneak peaks of our newest podcast.


Bulletin Board

New start date. Jun 29-Aug 21

Zoo Camp at The Zoo in Forest Park. Springfield, MA. Explore Nature. Discover Wildlife. Meet Exotic Creatures. Join the Zoo Camp at The Zoo in Forest Park 9am-4pm daily during the summer and school breaks. Children ages 6-13 will enjoy animal circle (meeting a new animal every day), diet preparation demonstrations (see what goes into preparing diets for over 200 animals), animal enrichment activities, scavenger hunts, arts & crafts, and much more. Pricing starts at $250 for nonmembers per weekly sessions with daily rates of $60. Sign up for a wild time! Dates: Jun 29-Aug 21; Age Range of Campers: 6-13yo. Contact: 413-733-2251. education@forestparkzoo.com. www.forestparkzoo.org.

New start date. Jul 6-Aug 14

Berkshire Nature Camp at Mass Audubon. Lenox, MA. At Berkshire Nature Camp, campers ages 3-16 have fun and make friends as they discover nature! Trail explorations, wildlife observation, outdoor play, hands-on activities, games, and crafts keep campers engaged throughout the summer. Camp takes place at Pleasant Valley, Mass Audubon’s 1,400-acre wildlife sanctuary with diverse forests, meadows, mountains, brooks, and beaver ponds. For over 70 years, Berkshire Nature Camp at Pleasant Valley has inspired children’s love for the unique nature of western Massachusetts. Campers learn by playing, exploring, and having free choices and guided activities in a safe space with caring instructors. Dates: Jul 6-Aug 14; Age Range of Participants: 3-16yo. Contact: 413-637-0320. berkshirecamp@massaudubon.org. www.massaudubon.org/berkshirecamp.

Online. Aug 10-14

Being Self. Greenfield, MA. Being Self is a unique online camp experience for LGBTQ+ kids. Each day will be a 2-3 hour session involving theatre, self-discovery and artistic activities. The goal of the camp is to help young people discover who they are in this moment and who they would like to become. All activities lead to a final video project where campers will record a documentary of who they are. These videos will be edited together into a short film which will be shown on Eggtooth Productions website. Dates: Aug 10-14; Age Range of Participants: 15-18yo. Contact: 413-522-1445. joe@joedulude2.com. eggtooth.org.

Online. Aug 10-14

The Putney School Summer Arts. Putney, VT. The Putney School Summer Arts hosts summer arts workshops in July for high school students. Create and connect through art. Dive deep into workshops and join a wildly creative community. About a hundred students attend the three-week session, and workshops are capped at 12 students, fostering a close-knit community of young artists. Students come to discover a form, others to hone their practice, and all connect with the faculty. Dates: Jul 12-31; Age Range of Campers: 14+yo. Contact: 802-387-6297. dfolgar@putneyschool.org. summer.putneyschool.org.

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art presents ART in PLACE: Social Distancing in the Studio, an online exhibition featuring artworks created by more than 20 leading picture-book artists during the global pandemic. Illustrator/author Mo Willems co-organized the exhibition with Ellen Keiter, The Carle’s chief curator. The curators hope the exhibition will provide solace to everyone counting on picture books during this challenging time. If you’ve been making art at home, they invite you to share it on social media, too: #CarleArtInPlace. Whether you’re making art or learning about art from home, The Carle is a treasured community-based resource in Western MA that support learning and creativity! Make a donation: www.carlemuseum.org/give.

Are you looking for a community-based educational resource to support music studies at home? Each week, the Springfield Symphony Orchestra (SSO) Homegrown Series delivers a new video to support virtual learning! Music students can hear from Maestro Rhodes, SSO musicians, youth orchestra musicians, SSO staff, and others. Their Homegrown Series includes videos that explore and demonstrate different genres of music, composers, and pieces. You can even learn about the different instruments with their virtual Musical Petting Zoo episode! Explore their series online and consider donating to their Musician’s Relief Fund to support SSO musicians whose livelihoods have been adversely affected by the current Covid-19 global pandemic.

PARTNER WITH HILLTOWN FAMILIES: Are you offering virtual classes or lessons? Are you facilitating online social, learning, or entertainment opportunities? Is your local business offering new ways for customer engagement? Partner with Hilltown Families in your online outreach, delivering your message to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers. Hilltown Families is committed to our community and supporting one another in times of need. Our sponsors and advertising partners allow us to keep delivering this community-based educational resource to our readers for free (since 2005!). Local and online businesses, virtual and local service providers, non-profit organizations, and individuals are encouraged to reach out to find out about our new and exciting opportunities! Contact Sienna at swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.


SUGGESTED RESOURCES &
LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
May 30-June 12, 2020

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Resources and opportunities below are shared as a courtesy. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm age appropriateness, registration requirements, and associated costs.

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Nature-Based Learning: Spring Chorus of Frogs & Toads

On the heels of a New England winter, spring in Western MA can be very engaging to the senses. This week, take inventory through your senses and notice what’s “speaking” to you.

As you move through the final month of spring, notice what you observe through your senses and how your observations might change and evolve. Our sense of place is interwoven with the seasons and our five senses, deepening our connection to place through seasonal changes. Embedded within this awareness are self-directed learning opportunities that are sparked by curiosity and supported by community-based resources.

WHAT DO YOU HEAR? Native species are a community-based resource that can deliver lessons through our senses. Take, for instance, deep listening to the frogs and toads native to Western MA. Have you ever noticed how their chorus changes through the season? How they are quiet on some evenings and very noisy on others? Pay attention to their chorus (or lack of) and let it guide your learning! It’s a great way to support interests and education in herpetology, biology, and ecology. Start by learning the calls of different native frogs in your region. This video demonstrates how their chorus blends and changes over five months (in just 22 seconds!).

GET CURIOUS: Once you are able to identify the different calls of the frogs and toads in your area, see if you can single out their contribution to an evening spring/summer soundscape. If you find yourself wondering why you hear them one evening, and not the next, get curious and look for the answers. Maybe their mating season has ended? Is the weather a factor? Are they loud or quiet before or after rain? What’s the high and low temperature for that day? These questions and the search for the answers guide learning while putting into practice the process of self-directed education, encouraging curiosity, and delivering the rewards of following your interests.

ONLINE LEARNING:

  • Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Macaulay Library has audio recordings of different species to support your learning of different calls.
  • AmphibiaWeb provides information on amphibian declines, natural history, conservation, and taxonomy.

Photo credit: (c) Sienna Wildfield. Video credit: Cable Natural History Museum


Nature-Based Learning with Curly Willow on the Westfield River. Nestled in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountains on the east branch of the Westfield River, Curly Willow on the Westfield is an emerging space for the passionately curious. A convergence of mindfulness and community-based education. Member, Community-Based Education Network™.

Red Poppies: The Flower of Memorial Day

Hilltown Families Presents: The Tom Knight Show, “The Solar System”

The Tom Knight Show: “The Solar System”

Hilltown Families and western Massachusetts musician/artist, Tom Knight, have partnered up to offer a series of singing puppet shows for families at home, featuring puppets, songs, and dancing for all ages.  In episode five, Tom sings a rockin’ song about the solar system while planets spin around his head. (Really.) Allie learns what’s included in the system and why Pluto is not a planet any more.


ABOUT TOM KNIGHT

Tom Knight is a multimedia artist, based in Haydenville, MA.  He has been delighting children and their grown-ups with his original, interactive, musical puppet show since 1988 with a unique blend of musicianship and puppetry shows. With his release of five CD’s for children and over 900 performances at festivals, museums, and libraries across the country, Tom Knight’s show are always lively and engaging for an intergenerational audience.

ABOUT HILLTOWN FAMILIES PRESENTS

Hilltown Families presents is a program of Hilltown Families, a community-based education network serving all of western Massachusetts, partnering with local artists, performers, individuals, organizations, and small businesses in the delivery of educational and entertaining video content for families at home. Interested in participating? Send your proposal to swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org.

Online and Self-Directed Learning During Memorial Day

ONLINE LEARNING: Learning about the individuals who served in wartime can have a significant impact on our sense of appreciation as we remember their acts of service. Introduce yourself to the American Vietnam War Veterans who were born on this day/month and those who died on this day/month. How does learning of their age, race, hometown, religion, marital status, length of service, how and where they perished, and reading comments from friends and family, impact your emotional connection to the people who served our country?

SELF-DIRECTED LEARNING: Another way to learn about veterans who served our country is by visiting historic graveyards. In Agawam at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, nearly 10,000 veterans and their dependents have been interred. Filled with stone markers that chronicle a community’s history, local cemeteries can provide visitors with a look deep into the past and even into the lives of those who have served our country. Families wishing to engage in self-guided tours of a historic cemetery can visit Longmeadow’s Olde Burying Yard section of the Longmeadow Cemetery, where a collection of headstones serve as a museum chronicling the town’s history. Some gravestones can be explored via virtual tour, while others must be located in person. Historic Northampton offers virtual tours of the city’s Bridge Street Cemetery, a 300-year-old graveyard that is the final resting place of many notable Northamptonites. As true to any community space during COVID-19, please practice safe social distancing and be respectful of other visitors while visiting loved ones.

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” – William Arthur Ward

VOLUNTEERING: In addition to remembering those who died while serving our country, Memorial Day can also be a day to pause and express appreciation towards those who survived and are currently serving our country. Operation Gratitude’s response to COVID-19 is a call to action for #VirtualVolunteerism. They are providing ways for families to give back from your own home.

Photo credits: (c) Sienna Wildfield

May 23-June 5, 2020: What do you want to learn today?

HFVS Great Outdoors Episode with Guest DJ, Andy Z (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Great Outdoors Episode with Guest DJ, Andy Z

Join Guest DJ, Andy Z for a musical journey to “the great outdoors,” and experience songs that teach, inspire, and remind all to look for miracles in nature, big and small. Selections include pop and rock classics, children’s music standouts, and contemporary kindie hits. – www.andyz.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
May 23 & 24, 2020
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: “From spirals to spots to fractals, nature is full of interesting patterns. Many of these patterns even resemble geometric shapes. One of the most common? Hexagons. Why do we see this six-sided shape occur so many times in nature? This week we explore why hexagons are so common in the natural world, from honeycomb to bubbles to rocks, and what their mathematics, physics, and biology may have in common.” – via It’s Okay To Be Smart


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Frances England – “Explorer Of The World” [Explorer Of The World]
  • Justin Roberts – “Rolling Down The Hill” [Lemonade]
  • John Denver – “Rocky Mountain High” [John Denver’s Greatest Hits]
  • Nick Drake – “From The Morning” [Way To Blue (An Introduction To Nick Drake)] The Okee Dokee Brothers — “Saddle Up” [Saddle Up]
  • Andy Z – “Camping Song” [Camp Andyland]
  • Grin Brigade – “It’s Spring” [Crazy With Happiness]
  • Tom Petty – “Wildflowers” [Wildflowers]
  • Marla Lewis – “I Love To Talk To Plants” [I Love To Talk To Plants]
  • Andy Z – “Bizzy Bee” [Camp Andyland]
  • Chicago – “Saturday In The Park” [Chicago IX – Chicago’s Greatest Hits]
  • Andy Z – “Drink More Water” [Camp Andyland]
  • The Singing Lizard – “I’m A Little Cloud” [AlphaBeat]
  • Electric Light Orchestra – “Mr. Blue Sky” [All Over The World: The Very Best Of Electric Light Orchestra]
  • Andy Z – “Galaxy Song” [Camp Andyland] America – “A Horse With No Name” [America]

Original broadcast: May 4, 2018

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