I know this pandemic has hit you like a ton of bricks - with having to finish the school year out in quarantine, then the loooong summer (which we are still in!), and now the worries about how this coming academic year will look. I am the mom of two sons who are now out of the house - because of them I began helping families starting in 2004. It’s been a ton of fun for so many reasons, one of which is that by helping other parents, I helped myself figure out family fun and day camps during school holidays. I also am an “info-preneur” and love to research and then share what I know. So in situations like we are in now, I strap on my running shoes and jump into action!

That’s why I created a new blog for these uncertain times we are in to help ya’ll during the school year. Welcome to EXPLORE PICKS! I will, of course, continue producing my CAMP PICKS round-ups of offerings when school is out of session (you can see past editions here). And now I will give you some great ideas for enriching your child’s online or even in person schooling - once each month in August/September/October/November. Many after school or extra-curricular programs aren’t happening - or have changed their structure so it might not work for you. Or perhaps you want a place for your child just to do something new and/or different (after all, this is a great time to go for it!). Just because we are in a global crisis, it doesn’t mean we can’t make life better or more interesting for our kiddos. We will get back to a non-virus world (hopefully soon!) - in the meantime, let your kids have fun in between the school obligations!

Below are some wonderful organizations that I want you to please check out. They are offering a mix of virtual and in person programs - all of them are interesting. Please note that ALL in person programs are following strict safety guidelines.

Speaking of fun - SUMMER IS STILL HERE. I hope that you can take these last few weeks and enjoy some quality family time together. I’ve been doing “Monday Night Live” videos on my GISH PICKS KIDS Facebook page at 9pm where I talk about how to be a “tourist in your own town.” My most recent video is below and you can see the others here, here, and here. Enjoy!

And - if you aren’t a GISH PICKS: CURATED CULTURE FOR KIDS & ADULTS subscriber, please go to and sign up. Be sure to pick the KIDS list so you’ll get all my family PICKS.

P.S. If ya'll don't know about the Holderness family and their HILARIOUS videos, you should. They have kept me in stitches for months, and they really understand the struggles of being a human and being a parent in this pandemic (in life really!). You can see their videos here.

"Monday Night Live" August 17



Adventure Learning Program

Whole Health Fitness
Adventure Learning Program
PHONE: 346.404.8856
DATES: ongoing and every day
TIMES: vary and are flexible
AGES: 13-18 years old
COST: varies -- $60/session and subscriptions start at $200 (plus there are group rates!)

Adventure Learning Program aims to be the meeting place for mental, emotional, physical, and social health. It is their belief that health is comprehensive and that these components cannot be achieved and sustained unless they are all maintained. Their core values are connection, freedom, fun, community, and exploration. ALP is here to help individuals and organizations co-create these values through adventure!

Camp Invention

Innovation Exploration Kits
Camp Invention
PHONE: 800.968.4332
DATES: ongoing
TIMES: ongoing
AGES: 5-12 years old
COST: start at $45

Your kids can enjoy hands-on fun at home from the makers of Camp Invention®! Their “I Can Invent®” series of Innovation Exploration Kits™ deliver some of their best hands-on camp activities for at-home fun and learning. The full set includes Bot ANN-E™, Innovation Force®, Optibot™, Robotic Pet Vet™, and DIY Orbot™ kits, a Camp Invention T-shirt, an Inventor Log, and access to exclusive digital content including step-by-step instructional videos.

Longevity Total Fitness

LGV’s Youth Training Camp
Longevity Total Fitness
PHONE: 713.291.8924
DATES: ongoing on week days
TIMES: varies (see description)
AGES: varies
COST: $30/class

LGV is a state of the art fitness center in Bellaire that delivers a wide range of innovative and functional ways to help clients get into shape while having fun. Their Youth Camps are designed to help increase aerobic and muscular endurance, improve balance and coordination, and help young ones stay active. Currently, the Boy’s Camp is Mondays at 4:30pm, Tuesdays at 4pm, Wednesdays at 4:30pm, and Fridays at 4pm. The Girl’s Camp is Tuesdays at 3pm, Thursdays at 4pm, and Fridays at 3pm. More camps will be added and personalized, one-on-one training is available.

Main Street Theater

Classes at the Theater
Main Street Theater
PHONE: 713.524.7998
DATES: starts September 11 (dates vary by program)
TIMES: vary
AGES: 4-18 years old
COST: varies

In response to the needs of our community due to COVID-19, Main Street Theater is offering additional education programs this fall that provide children with a safe, fun, and creative learning environment. In addition to their regular Core Skills Classes, they are introducing: *a new on-site learning lab where children can receive support with online schooling and have breaks to play theater games and more; *Drama Day Fridays: special after-school fun; *Pod Classes: their teachers come to your neighborhood for your children and their close friends to have theater/dance/stagecraft mini-camps; and *Rehearsal & Performance Classes: they are bringing back their R&P's where children get to do a full play!

Gish Creative

Meditation with Ms. Sarah
Gish Creative
PHONE: 713.492.1173
DATES: September 14 through October 30 (days vary depending on age)
TIMES: 10-10:30am
AGES: 5-18 years old
COST: $30/series

Sarah Gish is the publisher of GISH PICKS: CURATED CULTURE FOR KIDS & ADULTS and is also a longtime meditator. She will meet with kids via Zoom for 30 minutes to help them focus and center their days in these uncertain times. Lessons learned will be about types of meditation, how meditation can calm you down in any situation, the benefits of meditation for memory and concentration, and how meditation leads to love of self. Children 10 and under will be taught on Mondays, children in middle school will be taught on Wednesdays, and children in high school will be taught on Fridays. Please call or email Sarah to register (you can reply to this email!).

Woodlands Children's Museum

2020 Fall and Winter Workshops
Woodlands Children’s Museum
PHONE: 281.465.0955
DATES: starts September 8
TIMES: varies
AGES: 2-10 years old
COST: varies

The Museum’s dynamic small group Fall and Winter Workshops offer age appropriate activities that are especially designed to foster creativity, promote self-expression, and develop a young child’s imagination. The curriculum is designed to support the cognitive development of early learners through hands-on engagement. Critical thinking skills are nurtured through cause and effect interactive discovery learning techniques using the arts, dramatic play, squishing, sorting, mixing, swirling, collecting, and building.

Young Audiences of Houston

Arts for Learning Creativity Pops!
Young Audiences of Houston
PHONE: 713.520.9264
DATES: ongoing
TIMES: ongoing
AGES: all!
COST: free

Your children can enjoy Young Audiences of Houston's new online series, Arts for Learning Creativity Pops!, created by Young Audiences of Houston's Teaching Artists. Each online video is created to inspire learning at home. Young Audiences of Houston Teaching Artists are invaluable contributors to Houston's arts ecosystem and each commissioned creativity pops video provides financial support to our teaching artists. Stay tuned as they post new videos each week, and enjoy a pop of creativity each day.

For more about my personal, family, and business enrichment company, Gish Creative, and the services we offer, please click here.
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Sarah Gish
1940-A Fountainview, PMB 116
Houston, Texas 77057
phone: 713.492.1173

© 2020 Sarah Gish

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