Freelance writer, mum and lover of all things Melbourne :)
One-day learning experiences for kids around Melbourne
While the weathers cool, keeping the kids entertained over the school holidays can be difficult. You could provide them with entertainment in the form of movies or games, but while their minds are still so capable of absorbing new skills and information and there is a wonderful world of new experiences they have yet to investigate, I have a different suggestion.
There are a number of one day learning experiences around Melbourne, that can provide them with a unique and memorable day and a chance to learn something the may not have the opportunity to do at school. Whether they are a budding artist, cook or film-maker or if they want to be anything from a vet to a circus performer when they grow up, there are loads of choices when it comes to things kids can learn for a day this school holidays.
The Australian Centre for the Moving Image at Federation Square (ACMI) has a number of moving-making workshops providing kids the opportunity for hands-on experiences with their own film to take home.
Kids in the Studio: How to Be a Superhero allows kids (age 6-12) to be a superhero and create their own adventure in the green screen studio. Sessions run for two hours, starting at 10am and 1pm, the cost is $15 or $12 for ACMI members, with an additional $10 to take the film home on a USB drive. Workshops are available Monday 8th July – Friday 12th July and bookings are essential.
Kids and the Greenscreen (photo courtesy of Bob Bekian Flickr)
Kids in the Studio: Citizen Clay is a one-day workshop (10am -4pm) held on Thursday 4th and Friday 5th July, for kids aged 9-12. During this workshop they will mould, shoot, edit and premiere their very own claymation film. Kids will get a chance to be involved in all aspects of this film-making technique and use specially designed sets and studio lighting, just like a professional animator and take away their finished film. Bookings are essential and cost $90 or $75 for ACMI members.
Work at the Zoo for a Day
High School students can explore some future career options at Melbourne's Zoos over the holidays. Healesville Sanctuary cares for thousands of injured and orphaned wildlife every year. The Vet for a day program allows kids to work alongside the vets in the Australian Wildlife Health Centre. Alternatively if they were interested in being a Zoo Keeper, they could try Keeper for a Day at Healesville Sanctuary or Werribee Open Range Zoo.
Learn to be a zookeeper or vet (photo courtesy of johnsy web- flickr)
If Masterchef or otherwise has inspired them to cook up a storm there's a number of cooking classes available over the school holidays to gain some useful skills. They can create kids favourites such as; pizzas,sausage rolls, pasta, pies and desserts at Anna's Kitchen in Croydon. Classes begin at 10am and run Monday-Wednesday each school holiday week as well as Friday 5th and Saturday 13th of July. Kids classes cost $50 for each session.
Kids Cooking Pizza (photo courtesy of Heraldpost Flickr)
Closer to the City in Malvern, Gourmet Kids runs a range of classes from 1hr (all ages) to 3hr masterclasses for age 8 and over. Classes are run from 10am every weekday over the school holidays. The menu includes lots of sweet goodies including; yummy oaty cookies, rainbow or choc suprise cupcakes, nutella brownies as well some savoury muffins and pasties. The masterclass focuses on Italian specialities. One hour classes cost $30, 1.5hr $40 or $65 for the 3hr Masterclass. Bookings can be made online.
For the sporty kids, there are a number of options available to learn a new sport/activity or perfect one the already know.
Fitnessworx in Mitcham runs Circus, Movement and Fun Fitness Workshops during the school holidays. Kids can learn anything from trapeze and juggling skills, to cheerleading and aerobics. Clases are run for Prep to Grade 6 kids from 10am-3pm most days of the holidays and cost $50 per class.
Kids Learning Circus Skills (photo courtesy of Sharyn Morrow- flickr)
The Melbourne Sports and Aquaric Centre conducts the
Planet Sport Holiday Camp every weekday for Primary School age children. Here they can spend the day learning everything from Soccer and AFL to Basketball and Cricket, depending on the day you choose to go. Head to the website for more information.
Box Hill Community Art Centre is running 'All day Art Days' for creative kids that would love to spend a whole day creating works of art. Suitable for 6-12 year olds, each day costs $52 and bookings need to be made 1 week in advance.
Each day has a theme, for example 'On the Fly' on the 5th July includes a day of building wooden helicopters, wind catchers and rockets and solar systems. Other themes include; 'let it snow', 'possum magic' and 'superheros'. They can learn how to create art with a range of materials and techniques, including clay, wood and mixed media.
Singing Class (photo courtesy of NR Acampamentos- flickr)
For the performance artists, there are also acting, singing and dancing classes available with Boptillyoudrop. Their holiday program runs for 2 days each as the kids need the second day to perform a concert demonstrating their new found talents. Each day is run during school hours and the cost is $120 for the two days. The program is run on different dates in a range of locations (Yarraville, Langwarrin, Glen Iris and Ringwood).