While we practice social distancing and all do our part to stay home and stay healthy, many of our local organizations are working hard to keep in touch with families in our community.
We’ve compiled a list of online resources from LOCAL businesses and community organizations – printables, tutorials, videos, storytimes and more for you to enjoy in the comfort of your own home. We hope this helps you to stay in touch with your favorite organizations, and maybe you’ll even discover a new business or two that you want to follow, join, or support with a purchase. Cheers to the internet and creative minds!
TIP – Even if videos or Facebook live events are scheduled at a specific time, you can always go back and watch them later, simply look under the Video tab on a Facebook page.
Family Fundamentals – Storytime Videos & Enhancement Activities
Family Fundamentals is a parent resource center and a project of Success By 6 under the United Way of Central Florida. They offer weekly classes for children ages birth through 5, along with their parent or caregiver, as well as special events, all designed to promote early childhood education. Family Fundamentals is located in Downtown Lakeland on the 3rd Floor of Explorations V Children’s Museum. Click here to learn more.
♦ Family Fundamentals is posting a daily Facebook Video with a fun, interactive and educational story time. Each post will have guided questions for parents when watching the video and enhancement activities to do after the story. These are designed for ages 3-5 but can be enjoyed by all ages. Find them on their Facebook Page.
♦ There will be an additional video specifically for babies posted to Facebook on Wednesday each week.
Explorations V Children’s Museum – Storytime Videos & Enhancement Activities
Explorations V Children’s Museum provide a hands-on, fun-filled adventure in learning for children and families through cultural exhibits, educational programs and events in the arts & sciences. Located in Downtown Lakeland. Visit their website to learn more.
♦ Follow the Explorations V Children’s Museum Facebook page for live educational programs and fun challenges. Storytime Live is every Wednesday at 2pm. A full list of virtual programs and other local resources can be found on their website.
Lakeland Magic – Swish’s Magic Journey Book Download
The Lakeland Magic are the G-League Affiliate of the Orlando Magic, based right here in Lakeland. Their basketball season runs from November through March. Read our article to learn more.
♦ The Lakeland Magic have a fun kids book called Swish’s Magic Journey that is available as a free download on their website. Click here.
WonderHere – Daily Challenge Activity & Free Printables
WonderHere is a learn & play studio that offers hands-on academic classes, creative extracurriculars, & an open studio for free & structured play.
Right now they are offering:
♦ 6 week Anatomy Mini-unit is FREE for a limited time – Mini-Unit Page
♦ Daily #wewonderhere challenge on their Facebook and Instagram Pages with a new activity each day.
♦ Free printables on their website for educational fun at home – Website
TimberNook West Central Florida – Storytime Videos and Outdoor Play Ideas
TimberNook offers play-based outdoor programs for kids of all ages to inspire creativity, challenge the body, and engage the senses. They have programs for toddlers, homeschoolers, playgroups, Summer Camps, holiday camps, and more. Learn more on their website.
♦ TimberNook West Central Florida is posting storytime videos and resources on their Facebook Page that will inspire outdoor play at home.
Bok Tower Gardens
Bok Tower Gardens is located in Lake Wales, it is one of Polk County’s treasures. Visitors can enjoy a walk through their landscape gardens, unique Singing Tower carillon with daily concerts, magnificent 1930s Mediterranean-style mansion, and Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden. Learn more on their website.
♦ Bok Tower Gardens is posting videos on their Facebook Page that include a virtual garden tour, and concerts from the Singing Tower.
For the week of 3/23/20:
Monday at 1:00p.m. – Take a virtual garden tour.
Monday at 3:00p.m. & Wednesday at 1:00p.m. – Listen to a concert at the Singing Tower.
Friday at 1:00p.m. – Join Geert D’hollander in the tower for another interactive game of “Name That Tune”.
Camp Gilead – Videos
Camp Gilead is a Christian Camp and Retreat Center that has served central Florida since 1938. They run a popular overnight summer camp and day camp right here in Polk County.
♦ Camp Gilead will be live streaming at 3pm daily. See the videos on their Facebook Page.
Winter Haven Library – Puppet Show Videos
♦ The Winter Haven Library will be posting a new puppet show every Tuesday at 10am. Watch on their Facebook Page.
Polk Museum of Art – Art Lectures
Dreams Come True Entertainment – Storytime & Singalong Videos with Characters
Dreams Come True Entertainment is all about creating magic for all ages. They provide high quality fun and unique character entertainment for all ages at your home or other location, as well as special events at their magical location in Downtown Lakeland – Enchanted Fairytale Hollow. Learn more on their website.
♦ DCTE will be doing free Storytime Videos and Singalong Videos each week on their Facebook page.
Bump Galleta – Free Coloring Sheets
Bump Galleta is an artist and illustrator based here in Lakeland. You can see his work on his website, Explorations V, Greenwise Publix, and numerous other businesses around town, and also on his website.
♦ Bump is creating a free downloadable coloring sheet each day. Go to bumpgalletta.com/shop for your free coloring sheets.
Twenty Seven – Free Coloring Sheets
Twenty Seven is a paper goods and lifestyle brand based out of sunny Lakeland, FL that specializes in whimsical, colorful, and retro designs. Visit their website at https://twentysevenlkld.com/ to learn more see their products (seriously, I want to buy everything they make!)
♦ Twenty Seve is offering a fun printable coloring book for kids or adults. Click here to print it.
Florida Dance Theatre – Dance Videos
♦ Florida Dance Theatre is having a Dance Challenge. Learn the choreography of all the teachers/staff and piece it together into a video, post it online, and make sure you tag Florida Dance Theatre so they can see your moves. See the choreography videos on their Facebook Page.
The Doggie Bag Pet Boutique – Storytime Videos
♦ The Doggie Bag is taking their pet themed storytime online! Visit their Facebook page for details.
Theatre Winter Haven – Broadway Song Performances
♦ Theatre Winter Haven has been sharing video performances from current and past performers on the TWH Stage. Most of them are Broadway songs. What we’ve seen so far are some crazy talented people!! See the videos on their Facebook Page.
FIT4MOM Lakeland – Exercise Videos
♦ FIT4Mom will be live streaming workout videos Friday at 9:30am. Kid friendly and no special equipment required. See the videos on their Facebook Page.
Renee Lopez Coaching – Webinars for Parents & Athletes
Renee Lopez is the author of Looking for a FULL RIDE? A book that provides an insider’s perspective on college sports recruiting. Her website has over 40 free articles on the college recruiting process.
♦ Renee has partnered with other athletic and academic experts to offer a series of free webinars for parents, kids, and coaches. Sign up on her website.
Hope Equine Rescue – Educational Horse Videos
Hope Equine Rescue is a local 501(c)(3) devoted to the care and placement of unwanted, abused and neglected horses. Learn more on their website.
Highland School of Dance – Dance Videos
Piano Lessons with Ms. Elesha – Music Lesson Videos for Kids
♦ Ms. Elesha will be posting Facebook videos that are lessons for kids related to music and instruments. Visit her Facebook Page for videos.
Central Florida Resources
Although these aren’t in Polk County, they are places your kids might be familiar with from past visits AND have fun animal videos!
ZooTampa is posting a variety of videos to their Facebook page highlighting their animals. The penguins are my favorite so far.
Busch Gardens has a cheetah playtime video posted with more to come on their Facebook page.
MOSI – Museum of Science & Industry launches Virtual MOSI on 3/23. It will be a daily Facebook Live on their Facebook Page.
If you are a local business or organization in the Lakeland or Polk County area offering online resources for families, contact us to provide details and be added to this list. All listings are at the editor’s discretion.