They say kids are adaptable. They’d better be, because things are changing again. Elmwood Park Zoo reopened last week with timed tickets. New Jersey amusement and water parks — Diggerland, Morey’s Piers, Playland, and Wonderland in Ocean City — open Thursday. Storybook Land follows on Friday. The city’s Parks & Recs camps start July 6. The Philadelphia Zoo comes back July 9.
So, doing things together outdoors is happening again. And yet … This week’s Welcome America is still entirely virtual: museum days, music, and no fireworks. In more screen time, Crayola is ramping up the crafting, Disney+ is premiering Hamilton, and the Franklin Institute and a pharma giant are giving out chemistry sets for beloved workshops that would have taken place in city libraries.
Through Saturday at welcomeamerica.com (all ages)
One of the coolest — literally — parts of Philly’s run-up to July Fourth is getting to pop in and out of museums free of charge. This year’s virtual version has some standouts for kiddos: Thursday at 10 a.m., the Penn Museum’s Facebook page hosts an interactive tour of its amazing new Egypt Galleries — mummies and all — followed by an in-depth tutorial on Egyptian cartouches at 11 a.m.
Through July 8, enter at scienceinthesummer.fi.edu/phila. Classes: July 29–Aug. 13 (ages 7–13)
Still-locked library doors means no science workshops. So longtime sponsors GlaxoSmithKline and the Franklin Institute are opening a lottery for future scientists to win sets to use during live online classes in medicinal chemistry, materials chemistry, water chemistry, and color chemistry. Each free packet includes an activities guide, lab notebook, ticket to the museum to use, well, one day, and materials, such as effervescent antacid tablets (a.k.a. Alka-Seltzer), glue, cornstarch, coffee filters, plastic spoons, a funnel, pipettes, dried butterfly pea flowers — in other words, lots of things you have at home, some you might not. It’s all free, and non-kit winners can participate in the classes. It’s a national program; details for entering the lottery in the Philadelphia region (by county) are at the Franklin Institute website.
11 a.m. Tuesday–Friday, available at welcomeamerica.com (up to age 10, search for “Play Patrol” to find them on the site)
Frank Coates has spent a decade bringing music class to preschools and elementary schools that lack musical resources. This year, as construction wrapped on his company’s Manayunk production studio, Coates seamlessly pivoted to online lessons. This week’s series of free 10-minute sessions are an introduction to what they do: shaker-making (Tuesday), pots and pans playing (Wednesday), musical storytelling (Thursday), and wind instrument-making (Friday). All free as part of Welcome America.
4–5 p.m. Tuesday–Friday, register online through Michaels at michaelskids.com/kidsclubonline (ages 3 and up)
A.C. Moore may be RIP, but Michaels remains in the big-box craft store game. This week, the national purveyor of Spirographs and unicorn slime ingredients teams up with Easton’s mighty crayon maker to get little customers psyched for in-person retail. (And, honestly, who doesn’t crave a shopping spree for puffy paint and construction paper right about now?) Craft influencer Lynn Lilly leads a full week of free, 1,000-person-capacity Zoom classes, teaching how to make modeling clay pencil toppers (Tuesday), paper plate llamas and aliens (Wednesday), animal bookmarks and paper spinners (Thursday), and patriotic paper bead necklaces (Friday).
Friday and beyond at disneyplus.com (PG-13)