photo by Caitlin Abrams
If you'll be home on MEA, that long weekend when your children are home, even if you don't want them to be, allow JuiceBox to help you with something that normally eludes parents: A plan.
This plan might even include learning.
We’ve taken each day of MEA (and added one for good measure) and picked a school-inspired theme to build outings and activities around.
Here are some ideas to get you started, but feel free to share your own.
Theme 1: Science is super!
Start with a trip to the world-class Science Museum of Minnesota, which has enough permanent exhibits to keep your kids busy for at least a day, if not several. And right now you can test your powers of observation with the brand-new exhibit Sherlock Holmes and the Clocktower Mystery. Back at home, check out various materials under a microscope or create your own science experiments with a kit like Dr. Dessert, where your kids can even make their own treats. That’s clearly a win-win for everyone.
Theme 2: Art is awesome!
Bring your kids to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts or the Walker Art Center for some high-minded aesthetic inspiration, then head to a local studio to create your own masterpieces. There’s Simply Jane and beArtrageous in Minneapolis, Color Me Mine in Eagan and Maple Grove, Paint Your Plate in Edina and St. Paul, KidCreate Studio in Eden Prairie and Maple Grove, Manic Ceramic in Lakeville, and Kiln Kreations in Woodbury. Or just pile a table full of markers, paper, non-life-threatening scissors, glue and, if you’re really daring, glitter. Note: If you choose to put out glitter, we cannot be held responsible for the results.
Theme 3: STEM for the win!
For a math and engineering focus, The Works museum in Bloomington has a design lab where you can play with the laws of physics. To channel Frankenstein and Benjamin Franklin, head to The Bakken Museum in Minneapolis. For little gear-heads, there’s the Twin Cities Model Railroad Museum and the Minnesota Transportation Museum. Or put your fashionista’s math skills to work and head to your local mall: Give her a few dollars, quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies and see how close she can come to broke. Might as well learn something at Justice.
Theme 4: Reading is righteous!
A trip to the library or your local bookstore’s story hour is always reliable fun for little readers. For a dose of book-inspired theater this month, check out Junie B. Jones at the Stages Theatre Company or The Jungle Book at the Children’s Theatre Company. You can also head over to the Minnesota Children’s Museum’s new pop-up site at the Mall of America, where one of the main exhibits is Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites.
Theme 5: Get out of bed for phys ed!
Throw on some cable-knit sweaters and head outside, already! The possibilities are nearly endless: There’s The Minnesota Zoo, Como Zoo, the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, Afton State Park, and the Chain of Lakes, just to start. Or visit one of our Twin Cities orchards/pumpkin patchs and pick some apples and a pumpkin perfect for carving. If the weather isn’t cooperating—and we’ve been around the MEA block enough to know it can be shorts or snowsuits—we’re also fans of our cities’ indoor parks: The Eagles Nest, The Blast, Edinborough, Good Times Park, to name a few great options.