Thinkers, Teachers, and Tinkerers abound at Somerville’s Parts and Crafts
Posted by Tara, Ziptivity’s Metro Boston Community Ambassador
If your kids had as much fun as mine did at Beam Camp’s Inventgenuity Festival last weekend – or if they couldn’t go, but you think they would’ve had a great time – check out Parts & Crafts in Somerville. For the best introduction to the magic happening in the basement of the Clarendon Hill Presbyterian Church, go to the Parts & Crafts Open Shop. Every Friday night from 5-8pm, Katie and Will, the organization’s brilliant masterminds, open up the space to families who want to explore and create. We visited a couple of weeks ago. After offering us dinner, Katie showed us around the space, a wonderland of games, LEDs, motors, building materials – everything you could possibly need to make cool stuff.
Parts & Crafts also has a great schedule of workshops, and some of them run concurrently with Open Shop. The Friday night we were there, my son and I spent most of the evening taking apart printers and VCRs while my daughter built a drawing robot in the Girls Invention Night workshop, which is offered the first Friday of each month. Every other Friday, they offer a hands-on history of science workshop, which is aptly named “Eureka!”and sounds truly inspiring and edutaining. To get all the latest info on workshops and other happenings at Parts & Crafts, you can check out their calendar, but I also recommend subscribing to their mailing list.
Parts & Crafts makes school vacations easy for parents. They offer camps all summer and during the school vacation weeks for ages 7-12. The hours are 9-3, but early and late care options are available. The suggested cost is $300 for the week of inventing, making, learning, creating, and building. And they make a sliding scale available to those who can’t afford the full amount. If February vacation week snuck up on you, not to worry – you can still register your child for their camp now.
One more cool thing: You know what a CSA is, right? Well, Parts & Crafts is starting a CSE – Community Supported Education, a monthly box filled with projects and ideas. This is especially nice if getting to Somerville is difficult (or just a pain). Find out more about the CSE here.
Whether they experience Parts& Crafts in a workshop, a camp or a box, your kids will almost certainly have fun, get inspired, and amaze you with their talent and creativity.
About Parts & Crafts
The Parts and Crafts Collective is a group of thinkers, teachers, and tinkerers in the Boston area who are interested in helping people build, think, create, succeed, fail, and learn. We run hands-on creative arts, science, and engineering programs for kids and adults to help people learn and do and make things.