We have updated our list of Kuwait Moms Guide's favorite parks & playgrounds in Kuwait. There are so many of these hidden gems, perfect for kids to get outdoors and have some fun and explore.
KMG #59 has been sent to inboxes today.
In this issue find interesting articles, special offers, mom & baby coffee mornings, outdoor parks & playgrounds and lots more.
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I was inspired by a list of 30 things that mean a lot to kids published in Parents Magazine. So I’ve adapted it to Kuwait and added a few ideas of my own. Hope you like it.
(Thanks to Lana for sharing the original article).
Back to school can be a stressful time for parents and kids. Children are worried about their new teachers, which friends will be in the same classes and which ones won’t. There are a multitude of issues – uniforms, schedule, transport, bedtime, homework, after school activities, etc that need sorting. Here are a few tips and ideas to help make the transition for you and your children a bit easier.
Faye Sultan is the first female Kuwaiti swimmer. She talks about hard work, discipline and chasing your dreams. - Photos courtesy Faye Sultan
Faye Sultan was the first Kuwaiti female swimmer to compete in the Olympics. She placed first in her heat at the summer games in Rio this year, with a time of 26.86 seconds to finish 54th out of 88 competitors. Kuwait Moms Guide spoke with the young swimmer to learn more about what led up to her Olympic achievements.
Kuwait Moms Guide: Please tell us a bit about how you get involved in swimming?
Faye: My older brother was a competitive tennis player and I witnessed his dedication to his sport on a daily basis. He inspired me to pursue swimming competitively. I swam alone for a few years before joining Elite Swim team in Kuwait. I also trained with the National team before heading to London.
KMG: What other competitions have you swam in?
Faye: I have competed in the Junior World Championships in 2011, and the World Championships in 2013 and 2015. I have also competed at the NESCAC championships and the NCAA Div. IV championships, both for 4 years in a row.
KMG: What led you to decide to try for the Olympics in Rio?
Faye: I've been training and competing internationally for the past 10 years. Before college, I trained in Kuwait on the Elite Swim Team. The past 4 years, however, I competed and trained with the Williams College Swimming team. During this time, I was coached by the Williams college coaching staff.
KMG: Can you tell us a bit about what it takes to qualify for the Olympics and especially the obstacles you faced and how you overcame them?
Faye: In college, I had swim practice every afternoon, and then on alternating days I would have a morning lift and swim. I would work out 2-3 times a day, on average, and I would compete every weekend. There are a lot of ups and downs with any sport. For example, this season I was injured and I had a disappointing college season. I just had to keep my head up and power through. I ended up swimming my fastest time to date at Rio.
KMG: You are among only a handful of elite female Olympians from the Gulf - how does being a woman impact your identity as an athlete? What is your opinion on women athletes in the region, their access to sports, their support among the public, from the govt, etc?
Faye: It is a great honor to be able to represent your country on a platform as high as the Olympics, regardless of gender, but being able to do so while overcoming such obstacles makes it an even greater feat. There is a lot of talent in Kuwait and it needs to be cultivated. One way to do that is by having better facilities available to women.
KMG: How did it feel to be the first female swimmer from Kuwait at the Olympics?
Faye: It's an honor to be the first Kuwaiti female Olympic swimmer. My hope is that I will not be the last, and to see more women participating in the Olympics would be a great next step.
KMG: You won your heat but did not qualify, how has that result affected you? Will you try for the Olympics in 2020? What are your next plans?
Faye: I swam a best time, so I couldn't have been happier. I have been swimming for so long that a small break is long overdue. As for Tokyo 2020, it's too soon to tell.
KMG: What do you have to say to moms and kids - especially little girls - in Kuwait who might have Olympic dreams or are even keen athletes?
Faye: Dream big, and work hard for yourself and for your country. Nothing worthwhile is ever easy!
Lots of folks are spending part or even the whole summer in Kuwait. If you have kids this can be challenging because school is out and the weather is too hot to spend much time outside.
Thankfully there are about a zillion summer camps available this summer with everything from art to soccer, swimming to English lessons. But if you still need ideas to keep the kiddos busy, we’ve come up with some ideas for summer fun.
1. Learn a new skill or sport. Ice skating, bowling, swimming or any indoor sport activity (karate, zumba, ballet, soccer, dance, etc.) Choose just one activity or sport for the kids to focus on learning well this summer. Some of these can be challenging so please make sure to wear appropriate safety gear or to have qualified instructors/coaches/lifeguards available.
2. Hire a tutor or enroll them in a class to learn an instrument or language. Summer is the best time to start as they can practice three or four times a week and get the foundation of the new information before being loaded down again in the fall with school work/activities. Check out the Kuwait Music Academy, LAPALoyac, Art Center in Shuwaikh, InstitutFrancais, TheraSpanishPlay or check our list of After School Activities for more resources.
3. Tour the playplaces. For younger kids, Play at Discovery and Promenade malls, or Future Kids, Magic Planet. For older ones, the new Trampo / Clip & Climb in Murouj. There’s also Sirbb Circuit in the evenings for go-carting.
4. Read books. Take the kids to the book shop (see our full list of bookstores and libraries in Kuwait) and let them choose books for themselves. Sign up for a reading challenge, you will need a US address) or let the kids set up their own reading challenge. Dar Al Athar Al Islamiyya is also offering weekly storytimes on Wednesdays and Saturdays and has a reading library for children.
5. Rearrange / redecorate their bedrooms or even the living room. (This will require help from an adult to move around the furniture.) You don’t have to keep it that way forever, maybe just a week or so but see what ideas they come up with. To make it educational, let them draw the room first with all the pieces of furniture and then let them work from their own drawing, taking note not only of furnishings but also decorations, curtains, windows, doorways, pathways, etc. They can get really creative and use a cardboard box, tissues, paint chips, sticky notes and other items to recreate their room the way they want to rearrange/redecorate it.
6. If possible, take them to work to spend a day with you. Plenty of offices allow a ‘work with mom or dad day’ and you can give them small tasks and things to do. It’s good for children to see what their parents do for a living and you can explain to them the idea of work, the different types of jobs there are and maybe open a discussion (depending on their age) about what they might want to do when they grow up.
7. Learn to code. There are tons of free or low cost resources online for learning to code and even summer camps here that offer it. Introduce them to the concept and see if they want to take a class – online or in a camp: https://code.org/learn
http://lightbot.com/ (Kuwait Moms Guide’s children use this on our smartphone and iPad and its both fun and educational)
8. Let the whole family learn a new skill. Push yourself and the kids out of your comfort zone by taking a class or looking online to learn a new language or skill. You can also take a class in a subject that interests the whole family.
There are heaps of great websites for lifelong learning:
9. Help an elderly neighbor or relative for the day. This could involve helping the neighbor fix stuff around their house or do the grocery shop. Preferably someone you know well and live close to.
10. Create an imaginary land, draw it and then write a story about the place/people in the land. This is a fun collaborative project for older kids. Get large poster boards and let the kids draw several worlds/sections. Don't forget the 'action' what happens in the story?
11. Organize a community game for the neighborhood kids (soccer, water balloons, etc.) This will take some organization and requires that you know a few of the people in the neighborhood or apartment building.
12. Learn to juggle. Yes I know that sounds mundane but trust me, kids can spend hours on this and its great for gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination and serious fun. Once the kids are good, hold juggling competitions and give out small prizes.
Here’s a few places to help:
13. Have a Yes Day. One of Kuwait Moms Guide’s favorite summer activities is to give the kids a ‘Yes’ Day. The rules are simple: From daylight to dusk, anything they ask, the answer is always Yes (within reason and as long as it’s not dangerous). Want chocolate cake for breakfast? Yes! Stay up late and watch cartoons? Yes! Color mom’s hair purple? Well, we can chalk it. My girls love their Yes Day and look forward to it all year long.
14. Create a comic book. This is a great one for middle school kids and they can take several days to finish it. Help them develop a basic story line and the main characters and then leave them to figure out the rest. Read a few graphic novels or comic books to them beforehand to help them understand the concept. You can download free printable comic book templates here: http://kidsactivitiesblog.com/59444/comic-book-template
15. Take a yoga class as a family. A great way to introduce the kids to a lifelong healthy practice while also helping yourself get in shape.
16. Learn to craft. Knit, crochet, weave or sew and teach the kids. All three of the most common textile arts/crafts are foundationally simple techniques that children as young as six or seven can learn easily. The only supplies required are yarn, hooks and needles and (if you are weaving, a frame). There are several places in Kuwait to learn textile arts (Sadu House, Khayt Group, Fakhri Arts, Craft Center, Barakat, Needles & Yarn etc.) and literally thousands of beginning videos on YouTube for knitting, crochet and weaving including instructions for kids and lefties.
Check out these:
17. Bridge activities. It’s a good idea to keep the kids reading, writing and doing maths over the summer and you can find ‘summer bridge’ books that help kids transition up from their previous grade to one they will enter in the fall. Set aside an hour each morning (when they are fresh and less likely to be tired or cranky) and have them do some bridge work to keep their academic juices flowing.
18. Set up simple science experiments or better yet let older kids set up science experiments. Check out HooplaKidzLab or WhizKidScienceor http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/article/40-cool-science-experiments-webto get started. Be sure to have them print out and read through the Scientific Method (simple kids version) first and use a notebook to keep track of their experiments.
19. Take a round robin tour of the local museums. The classic car museum in Shuwaikh is a sure fire hit and its air conditioned. The local maritime museum in Kuwait City and the modern museum of art are both worth a visit (check timings during Ramadan and summer). There is also the Arab Fund building in Shuwaikh which has an incredibly beautiful interior and will amaze even younger kids. The Mirror House is a kid favorite and well worth the visit.
20. The malls of Kuwait can be a bit claustrophobic during the summer months, especially if you visit them often. Instead of going at the normal times, mix it up with an early morning marathon walk with the kids. Lace up your sneakers and walk from one end to the other. (There are lots of people who walk the malls for exercise as well as shopping and dining.)
Let them entertain themselves
Kids don’t need to be entertained the entire summer. In fact it is important to leave them to their own devices and give them a chance to combat boredom with creativity. The more they are on their own, the more likely they will come up with games and ideas and things to do that you haven’t even thought of.
Give them control over their own summer plans. Ask what they want to learn or do over the summer. Tell them to make a plan or search online for solutions of how they can achieve these goals. For younger kids that require closer supervision, ask them to choose among a selection of ideas (learning how to make pancakes, to build a fort, to learn an instrument, etc.). Help them be responsible for their own summer.
Summer Camps in Kuwait 2016
Summer camps are a great way to get the kids out of the house and having fun during the summer holidays. There are a growing variety of camps nowadays – with all different types of activities, timings and days.
Bright Minds Summer Camp
Dates: Aug 7-Sept 1
Ages: 2.5 years old to 6 years old
Timings: Sunday-Thursday, 8:30am-12:30pm
Activities: Cooking, phonics and story time, music & dance, arts & crafts, sports & games.
Fees: KD 45 per week, KD 160 per month.
Contact: email@example.com or telephone: 5058-8833
Al Corniche Club Summer Camp
Dates: June 5 to Sept 1
Ages: 5 to 16 years and 3 to 5 years
Timings: Regular timings 9am-2:30pm; Ramadan timings 10:30am-3:30pm
Fees: Daily and weekly rates available
Engineering for Kids Summer Camp
Dates: August 17-28 & August 11-31
Timings: Various timings dependig on dates of camp
Ages: 3-14 years old
Location: The View Mall, next to the Missoni Hotel
Activities: Different camps offer various educational and fun STEM-based programs including Minecraft edu, summer camp, robotics, engineering activities and more.
Contact: 9924-4404 / 2205-3220 or register online at www.gotapnow.com/kidsengineering
Fastrack Summer Camp
Dates: From June 5-Aug 25 (with six different camps within those dates)
Timings: Ramadan: 9am-1pm & 1:30-5:30pm and after Ramadan 10am-2pm
Fees: KD 150 per camp
Hoop Mountain Ramadan Camp
Dates: Aug 14-25
Activities: Basketball skills and development
Contact: 2245-0668 or 9600-2601/2
Kidzania Summer Camp
Dates: July 10 to September 1
Activities: Drama workshops, art workshops, explorer and other activities
Little Genius Nursery Summer Camp
Dates: August 11-18
Ages: 1.5 years to 7 years old
Little Scientist Summer Camp
Dates: July 10 – August 31
Ages: 4 to 10 years old
Timings: 4pm-8pm, Monday – Thursday
Activities: STEM-based projects, hands on experiements, model making, arts & crafts
Location: Scientific Center, RasSalmiya
Fees: KD 200 per month; (KD 185 per month for members)
Contact: 6099-9847 or 6099-9732 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
My Gym Summer Camp
Dates: June 5 to Sept 1
Ages: 4 to 10 years old
Timings: 10am-4pm & 4pm-7pm; Ramadan Camp 10am-1pm & 2:30pm to 5:30pm
Location: Discovery mall, Kuwait City
Fees: KD 14 per day or KD 62 for six days for members; KD 19 per day or KD 67 for six days for non members
Soor Center Summer Activities For Children With Special Needs
Dates: August & September
Ages: 4-12 years old
Timings: 9 - 11:30am for 4-7 years old, 11:30am – 2pm for 8 – 12 years old
Fees: KD 750 per month
Location: Kuwait City, Soor Street, next to Ministry of Information, Munther Tower, 10 Floor
Activities: Sensory integration, social skills and play based activities
Contact: 22901677 or 6705-3366
UCMAS Summer Camp
Dates: June 1 to August 18
Ages: 3.5-5 years & 6-11 years
Activities: Sports, cooking, arts & crafts, reading, writing, etc.
Location: Salmiya Blk 10 and Blk 12, Transport available
Wiggle Kids Club
Location: Hawally, Promenade Mall, 1st Floor
Summer Camp activities
Contact: 2239-2757 or 6962-8855
World Fit Summer Camp
Dates: May 8 to Sept 1
Ages: 3-5 year olds & 5 to 11 year olds
Timings: 4-7pm (Sunday through Wednesday) and 2-5pm during Ramadan
Fees: KD 140 monthly
Location: Jabriya, Blk 11
Activities: pottery, sports, zumba, etiqutte, show and tell, baking and more.
Enjoy the last of Kuwait's social season with some fun activities this weekend.
THURSDAY, 31 March
31 – Mark the closing of @baytlothan with the last #shakshookmarket of the season from 5-9pm at Bayt Lothan. Food, music and more.
FRIDAY, April 1
1-2 – Bloom Expo at Dahiyat Abdullah Al-Salem, Blk 3 park Friday & Saturday. Call 9401-9877 / 9091-3342 for more info. Outdoor booths, flowers and greenery, children’s activities, food, music and more. @lamahkw
1 – Help break the Guinness World Record for the longest chain of mothers and kids in the world at @mall360 from 7pm in the main atrium.
1 – Decathlon Sports Day at Marina Crescent from 4-8pm. Starts at 4pm with Zumba class, 5pm Boot camp and 6;15pm 5k. Registration in advance required. Free
1 – Watch Rapunzel with your kids for free with @Wednesday.studio.kw at 6:30pm at the Al-Qibla School in Mubarakiya.
SATURDAY, April 2
2 – Free yoga in @alshaheedpark. At 9am, women only for all levels vinyasa flows. At 10am with Yoga and the 3. Bring water and mat.
2 – Storytime for children at @dai_kuwait at 3:30pm (Pls arrive a few minutes before). Free.
2 – World Autism Awareness Day Walkathon organized by @apk.center from the Scientific Center in Ras Salmiya to Marina Crescent. 8am to noon. Event is free.
2 – Celebrate World Autism Awareness Day with @taqabal with lectures on ASD at @elevationkw in Al-Bidaa from 2-8pm.
Lots of activities to celebrate Mother's Day this weekend. There will be live shows and entertainment at most of the major shopping malls.
FRIDAY, 18 March
17-19 – Q8 Food Festival at Marina Crescent. Tickets are required.
18-19 – Sit Alhabayib Pop Up Lounge at Salhiya Plaza with shopping, kids activity center, food and more. Friday 5-10pm & Saturday 12pm-10pm @popuploungekw with Kidz Nursery and Wynns.
18-19 – Reborn Kids Academy 'Kids Read' carnival with games, storytime, books, activities, food and more. Will be in Al-Siddiq, RKEA campus, Blk 5, St 507.
SATURDAY, 19 March
19 – Art & a Burger with Elevation Burger Al Bidaa from 2pm-8pm. Explore your children’s creativity.@elevationkw
19 – PAWS fundraiser at Ties Center & Second Chance @secondchanceq7. Shopping, arts & crafts, face painting & activities for kids. From 4-8pm at the Ties Center in Shuhada, Blk 4, St 413, House 67. Telephone: 2523-1015
19 - Celebrate #theSecretGardenProject & support Bayt Lothan with a walk starting from the Secret Garden at 5pm. Salmiya, Blk 9, Baghdad Street, Lane 11.
19 – Motorbash at Sirbbcircuit from 10am-10pm with food, music, booths, shopping, kids activities & more.
19 – Outdoor yoga at Al Shaheed Park with @yogeras from 10am. All levels. Pls bring your mat & water bottle. Event is free.
19 – Qout Market at the Pearl Marzouq from 9am to 5pm.
19 – Concours d’Elegance car show at Murouj from 5pm.
#kuwaitmomsguide #kuwaitmoms #kuwaitkids #kidsinkuwait #q8moms #q8kids #kuwaitevents #weekendq8
March 3-5, 2016
With only a few weeks left of great outdoor weather, now is the perfect time to spend the day at the park or beach or take the kids for a bike ride.
Be sure to pass by Q8 Books at Bayt Lothan before it moves to its new location.
Here are some other fun things to do this weekend with the family:
1. Kuwait’s Fire Service Directorate public exhibition including children’s activities, games and competitions. Opens 10am Thursday, with kids activities from 5pm each day through Saturday.
FRIDAY, 4 March
2. ToyStory free screening with @wednesday.studio.kw at 7:30pm at Alqibla school, Mubarakiya. Free with children's activities afterwards.
3. Meet & Bead with @Yadawi collective from 6-10pm for all beaders, crafters and creatives. In Jabriya, at @lbojzazz beading zone, Blk 9, St 6, House 13 (use the side entrance).
4. Hatha yoga at Al Shaheed park Free, no registration required. Will be on the green lawn in front of Core A Parking, next to the constitution monument. 9am-10am
SATURDAY, 5 March
5. Massive fireworks display near the Kuwait Towers, roads will be closed from noon, fireworks to begin 8pm.
6. Qout Market at the Pearl Marzouq in Ras Salmiya from 9am to 5pm with food, shopping, children’s activities and more.
7. The Cause Children’s Carnival at the Scientific Center in Ras Salmiya from 1-6pm. Fun, food and games for the whole family.
8. Storytime for children at Dar Al Athar Al Islamiyyah Amricani Cultural Center. No registration required. Starts at 3:30pm.
9. Taste of Boubyan to suppose @apk.center from 12-7pm at @mall360 rooftop of 360.