This summer is like no other summer. Our country's long history of racism and police brutality has come to a head in the midst of a global pandemic. So many go-tos for the summer, like city pools and town parks as well as camps — things that working parents depend on — are officially on hold, closed or canceled. And as important as it's always been to make sure our kids are consuming media and playing with toys that stimulate them and bring them joy, we're being mindful as ever about also making sure those things teach them to be kind, inclusive humans. You as a parent are trying to make the best of things for your kids, and that's why the Romper team is committed to helping you do that with Camp Romper this summer.
We invite your kids to join us (and some of our friends!) for a fun, completely free, virtual summer experience starting this month. With crafts, science experiments, cooking, storytime, and more, our goal is for Camp Romper is to allow all kids to explore their passions, get messy, and explore the realms of possibility — while keeping to our belief that the materials and experiences to which we expose our kids should help them learn to be aware and openhearted.
Each week will feature a new “camp,” so you’ll always know what’s coming and can get your kids excited and prepped. We know you and your kids are so over Zoom, but these activities require actual hands-on interaction. It’s not about videoconferencing with an empty toddler chair and plate of mac and cheese — it’s about creative expression, having lots of fun, and the chance to connect with your kids as they have the summer none of us were expecting.
We’re partnering with some of our favorite organizations to bring you summer Saturday programming.
On Saturday, June 13, we’re kicking off the festivities by making T-shirt pom poms with The Neon Tea Party, whose mission is to empower kids to celebrate their creativity through colorful, playful, universally beloved crafts.
The next week, on June 20, we’re making nut-free energy bites and easy guac with Sprouts Cooking School, a dedicated kids-only cooking school. The Sprouts team is passionate about nurturing adventurous palates, building a strong foundation for a lifelong love of cooking, and encouraging all families to cook together.
On June 27, join us for Drag Queen Story Hour with Harmonica Sunbeam. During this storytelling program designed for kids ages 3-8, Harmonica Sunbeam will read picture books, sing songs, and introduce children to the concept of drag as a form of dress-up and self-expression. Through storytelling and creativity, DQSH teaches children about gender diversity and all forms of difference to build empathy and give kids the confidence to express themselves however they feel comfortable.
We'll continue to update this page with more programming throughout the summer. We’ve also partnered with more of our favorite organizations to bring you additional options through the week, from Smart Buddies coding camp to acclaimed children’s singer and puppeteer Flor Bromley, who is offering a free Spanish musical adventure program.
For more details and how to register, head over to the Camp Romper sign-up page here!
We also invite you to visit our Camp Romper summer content hub, to which we'll continue to add new lists and ideas for keeping kids busy and happy this summer. Start with our proverbial summer reading list, which contains picks for both young readers and adult readers (yes, we are all still learning). The books tackle topics like race relations, environmental justice, and white privilege — or are simply a beautiful look into another human’s life. We’ve also got two incredible toy lists for inspo, whether you’ve got a backyard to turn into a summertime oasis or a small indoor space.
So grab your tube socks, your friendship bracelet supplies, and your favorite neon shorts. Camp Romper may be virtual, but our hope is that it'll help deliver to you and your kids the best of a quintessential childhood summer: connection, fun, and creativity. This doesn’t have to be the summer that wasn’t. Camp Romper can help make it the summer that totally was.