6 cool things to do (at home) with kids in Pittsburgh this week

Looking for some fun and challenging activities? How about a dinosaur dinner party, a barnyard ballet and a leopard cub cuteness cure? They’re all part of things to do with kids in Pittsburgh this week.

1. Supervise Zoo veterinary care

Getting behind-the-scenes at places like the Pittsburgh Zoo is very cool, even if it’s a virtual tour. Kids can watch the clouded leopard cubs receive their 16-week checkup at the zoo clinic. The brothers, Lynn and Gale, receive regular checkups just like human kids and are on a regular vaccination schedule. Other creatures in the vet series include Danny the Rabbit receiving dental care and a pair of Australian Black Swans undergoing a foot exam.

2. Dance the Story: “Barnyard Dance”

The interactive Dance the Story series from Pittsburgh Ballet has been offered at its studio classes and area libraries. Now, Dance the Story is presented in your home! This class focuses on the children’s book, “Barnyard Dance.” Kids learn basic ballet movement concepts and terms, like first position and plie. Related printables include a “Barnyard Dance” coloring page and Farm Animal Stick Puppets. New Dance the Story classes hit Facebook Live every Tuesday and Thursday, but the recorded classes are available anytime.

3. Make your own watercolor paint

Ugh! We hate when we forget to put caps on markers and they dry out. Don’t throw them away! Upcycle those babies to make watercolor paint. MuseumLab has a handy video to show you how.

4. Invite Dippy to dinner

Get to know our favorite dinosaur at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History a little better by inviting Dippy as a Dinner Guest. Kids will be prompted to consider what that invitation might entail. What would Dippy like to eat? (Definitely not chicken nuggets or mac ‘n cheese!) How much food should you plan to have on the table? A graph will help determine just how tall your dining room ceiling should be. And a printable placemat worksheet will test kids’ dino knowledge.

5. Design a troll with a ‘Hidden Life’

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Garden launched a contest for kids that’s tied into the Summer Flower Show: The Hidden Life of Trolls. Kids 12 and younger are invited to create a troll that might take its place among the massive mythological creatures that will be part of the show. The immersive, interactive exhibit is said to be unlike anything Phipps has presented before. Follow these rules to make your troll, give it a name and describe its magical powers. Troll designs that make the cut will be displayed throughout the exhibition.

6. Get the ‘Scoop on Poop’

Plan to catch this science lesson from Fern Hollow Nature Center on Facebook Live at 4 p.m. Friday, April 3.  Kids will learn about the world of waste and how we deal with it. The family-friendly session includes a discussion of the Species of Feces and a view of the Ground Water Simulator. There are likely to be a few giggles along the way (just say “Scoop on Poop” and see how your kids react), but the science is legit.