Austin Family & Kids' Activities in the Time of Coronavirus

Get creative and cure cabin fever

Spring break is extended, many of us are working from home, and you’re probably looking for ways to keep the kids occupied. Most of the places they could usually go are closed, so here’s a few ideas for family fun and some projects the young'uns can work on at home.

Photo by Getty Images

APL Virtual Library

With social distancing being encouraged and the libraries being closed for now, now's a great time to get familiar with Austin's virtual library. They've got audiobooks, movies, music, ebooks, and magazines; get details and explore the titles on the library's website.
library.austintexas.gov/virtual

Art Garage Pottery To-Go

UPDATE: As of March 24, Art Garage is temporarily closed due to the shelter-in-place notice.
Spark creativity with pottery and craft kits from Art Garage, now offering delivery and pottery to-go. They've got tons of crafting options to keep the whole family entertained, and you can even get a pottery kit to work on at home, then drop off the masterpieces for firing and pick them up when they're done.
Art Garage
11190 Circle Dr.
www.fb.com/theartgarageaustin

Austin Justice Coalition Art & Essay Contest

A contest for young men of color grades 3-12 in Travis, Williamson and Hays counties. Winners from each division will receive a $75 award and an award-winning book of their choice. They’re also looking for community members to participate as volunteer judges; find details and apply online through April 1.
www.austinjustice.org/boys-men-of-color

Photo by Getty Images

Don’t Mess With Texas Art Contest

Keep Texas Beautiful and the Texas Department of Transportation invite Texas students in kindergarten through 12th grade to submit their best litter prevention-inspired artwork to be considered for the Don’t Mess With Texas calendar, with the top 14 designs featured. Each winner will also receive a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 tablet, a Buc-ee's gift basket, their artwork framed and returned, and the opportunity to share the work on websites and social media. Teachers representing student winners will receive a $100 H-E-B/Central Market gift card. Submissions must be postmarked by April 24.
www.ktb.org/artcontest

Lights, Camera, Safety PSA Contest

The city of Austin's Safe Routes to School program invites seventh and eighth grade students to create their very own public service announcement (a short educational video) showing how to walk, bike, and roll to school safely. The winning filmmakers get Alamo Drafthouse gift cards, and their video will be shown in middle schools across Austin. Get all the details and submit your entry online by March 30.
www.austintexas.gov/lightscamerasafety

Keep Texas Beautiful Youth and Educator Awards

Nominations are being accepted for the Keep Texas Beautiful Youth and Educator Awards, which recognize the efforts made by youth and educators working to improve and beautify their communities. Nominate a person or group, such as your favorite scout, student group, educational nonprofit, teacher, school ... the possibilities are wide open. Applications are due April 3.
www.ktb.org/youth-educator-awards

Photo by Todd V. Wolfson

Yoga With Adriene

Local YouTuber and multiple "Best of Austin" winner Adriene Mishler has enough online classes to keep you busy through an extensive quarantine. There are videos specifically for kids and teens, and targeted sessions for any ailment you might be experiencing (anxiety, anyone?).
www.youtube.com/user/yogawithadriene

Studio Satya Online Yoga Classes

Local yoga studio Satya has live and recorded classes available online so you can get the exercise and meditation we all so desperately need right now. Donate any amount to get access, and keep your eyes peeled for short free classes coming soon via Instagram.
www.studiosatya.com/online-classes

Children's Books With Jayda Marie

Local YouTuber Jayda Marie has been uploading videos of herself reading books for children, and so far has read The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Berenstain Bears Get the Gimmies, and more. It's basically a virtual storytime at the library!
YouTube channel
Courtesy Girlstart.org

Girlstart STEM at Home

Nonprofit Girlstart has been empowering girls in science, technology, engineering, and math for decades, and they've made some of their programming available for use at home. Kids can learn about plate tectonics, light refraction, and so much more via fun, hands-on activities with household items. They aim to add new activities daily for livestreaming via their social media channels, so keep an eye out for that.
www.girlstart.org/stem-at-home

Escape to 1800s Texas

Updated 3/26: Pioneer Farms' General Store is still open for limited hours on the weekends to sell handmade soaps and fresh eggs by the dozen, but all other operations are suspended until April 13. In the meantime, follow them on Facebook and Instagram for fun facts, livestreams of the farm, prairie trivia, archive exploration, and more. Their website has a bunch of fun games and crafts to keep the family entertained at home, which, as they point out, is how the pioneers in the 19th century often lived.
www.fb.com/pioneerfarms

VentureLab Entrepreneurial Curriculum

Austin-based nonprofit VentureLab has entrepreneurial skills training available online for kids from elementary to high school age, aimed toward developing STEAM, design, creative, and collaborative skill sets. Their mission is to help create the next generation of innovators and encourage the type of thinking we need to overcome the crisis we face today, so now is a great time to spark your child's interest in problem-solving and build their skills.
www.venturelab.org/curriculum

Bead It Jewelry Kits

Bead It has been providing Austinites with classes, jewelry supplies, and more since 2002. Now they're offering jewelry-making and meditation & crystal kits available to purchase online and work on at home. There's a beginner's box designed for ages 5 and up and several more options, and owner Ashley Schor is also available to create special orders based on your needs, because everyone can benefit from some meditation and a creative outlet right now. See the contact info on the website if one of the kits doesn't suit you.
www.beaditaustin.com


Find more activities on our Community Events page.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Community
Austin Donation and Volunteer Opportunities During Coronavirus Outbreak
COVID-19 Community Opportunities
Ways to help your neighbor during this trying time

Katherine McNevins, March 16, 2020

Shout <i>OUT</i>: Lex Keaton
Shout OUT: Lex Keaton
These are the people in our gayborhood: Social Services Stud

Blake McCoy, March 27, 2015

More by Katherine McNevins
Central Texas Pig Rescue Puts on a Pig Pageant
Central Texas Pig Rescue Puts on a Pig Pageant
Animal rescue groups educate and entertain

March 6, 2020

The Best Recipe for Your Lucky Black-Eyed Peas on New Year’s Day
The Best Recipe for Your Lucky Black-Eyed Peas on New Year’s Day
Pickle the little legumes and never look back

Dec. 27, 2019

KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Community, coronavirus, COVID-19, Art Garage, Austin Public Library, Austin Justice Coalition, Keep Texas Beautiful, Safe Routes to School

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle