January 2021 | Southwest Ohio Parent | Dayton

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FORMERLY Dayton Parent Magazine




premiere issue {INSIDE}








Simple ways to make a fresh start in the new year.

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// JANUARY 2021




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Why Preschool Matters Six reasons not to skip this first school experience.

Get Schooled on Private School Learn about the multiple benefits of a private school education.

Shed the "Covid 19"

Switch up your family's quarantine routine for a healthier start to the new year.

In Every Issue

Sponsored Content

06 Letter from the Editor 08 News & Notes 10 Local Kids

28 Expanding Parental

Choice in K-12 Education

Resources & Calendars Around Town 11 Hidden Gems:

The Cincinnati Zoo

26 Things to Do in

22 Local Spotlight: The Children's Theatre of Cincinnati

Parenting 12 Poison Safety at Home

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January 31 Fun & Wacky Calendar

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Publisher Mary Wynne Cox mary@ohparent.com Associate Publisher + Creative Director Katie Clark katie@ohparent.com

Editor Nicole Sipe nicolesipe@ohparent.com Advertising + Sales Hannah Mohler hannah@ohparent.com Production Manager Karen Ring karen@ohparent.com

Hello, 2021! We made it to a new year. Whew! That sound you hear is a collective, relieved sigh from everyone that 2020 is finally over. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that the past year has been a doozy in many ways. I’m happy to put 2020 behind us, and welcome 2021 with open arms (and a masked face). The end of one year and the start of another is typically a joyous time. There’s a feeling of renewal and possibility with the start of something new, and I feel like that’s especially true this year. On the topic of starting anew, you’ve probably noticed that we have a new name. We've combined the best of Cincinnati Parent and Dayton Parent to become Southwest Ohio Parent. We’re still the great parenting magazine that you love, but now we’re better than ever, and we will reach communities all over Southwest Ohio. We’re excited to start the new year with a fresh name and a renewed commitment to delivering to our families the best local parenting information.


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As we begin a new year, it’s also time to start thinking about a new school year. Although it might seem far away, the 2021-22 school year will be here before you know it, so now is the time to do your research. Many schools are offering virtual open house tours online, which you can check out at your convenience and in the comfort of your own home. Visit our Virtual Open House Fair at ohparent.com/schools to learn about the many participating schools we have featured. Stay safe and well this year!

Community Outreach + Social Media Sarah McCosham sarah@ohparent.com Haley Paddock haley@ohparent.com

Digital Publisher Wendy Hasser wendy@ohparent.com Event Coordinator Brooke Litherland brooke@ohparent.com Billing billing@ohparent.com Contributing Writers Rachael Dupree, Steffy McCourt Calendar of Events calendar@ohparent.com

SW Ohio Parent is published monthly. Copyright 2021 by Midwest Parenting Publications, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. Distribution of this magazine does not constitute an endorsement of products, commentary or services herein.

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NEWS & Notes

Our monthly roundup of news you can use

Spend Some Time with America’s Favorite Cat Garfield, The Musical with Cattitude is coming to The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati…or to your home, whichever you prefer. There are two ways to watch this musical adaptation of everyone’s favorite sarcastic tubby tabby, Garfield. Limited tickets will be sold for in-person performances, which will require masks, social distancing and no more than four people per seating group. Those who prefer to enjoy from home can stream the performance via Broadway on Demand. Learn more at thechildrenstheatre.com.



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DID YOU KNOW? January is National Soup Month, which is

perfect since January is also typically the coldest month of the year. Looking for a way to celebrate? Why not ask everyone in the family to pick their favorite vegetable, meat, herb or spice and toss them all together to make a soup recipe you can hand down to the next generation!

celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Monday, January 18, is a day dedicated to celebrating the life and civil rights work of Dr. King. Education is the key to continuing Dr. King’s legacy and PBS.org has put together a comprehensive list of books for children that cover the life and work of Dr. King, the lives of ordinary people who stood up for what’s right, and stories about helping others and giving back. Find the complete list at pbs.org/parents/thrive/books-formartin-luther-king-jr-day.

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say cheese!

LOCAL kids

January is National Hobby Month, so we're celebrating by showing off the talents and interests of our local kids! Here are some of our favorite photos we received.

Blake (9) Arielle (3) and Marla (1)

Jack (10) and Caroline (8)

Simon (4) and Robin (6)

Cooper (4) and Stella (3) Wyatt (10)

Want to see your cute kids on this page? 10

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February 20 is Love Your Pet Day, and to celebrate, we want to see pictures of children and their pets! Email your best photos of your child and their pet (with the child's first name and age, and the pet's name) to editor@ohparent.com, and your picture may be selected to appear here!

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Poison Safety At Home As we experience the cold weather of the winter days, that means more time spent indoors. As we spend more time indoors, that means closer proximity to cleaning supplies and medications, which can be a danger for poisoning.

· Medications should be stored, up away and out of sight, even medications taken every day. Check bags, purses, bedside tables and other places young children are able to reach for medications that may have been left out after use.

Do a clean sweep for any poisonous products at least once a day, especially since routines have changed. If an unintentional poisoning does occur, make sure you save the Poison Help number in your phone and post it visibly at home: 800-222-1222. Specialists at poison control centers provide free, confidential and expert medical advice 24 hours a day.

Nationally, poisoning is the third leading cause of unintentional injury death among children ages 1 to 19. Locally, Dayton Children’s saw 279 patients due to unintentional ingestions in 2019. Now is a good time to make sure these items are stored up, away and out of the sight of curious kids. Here are some tips to keep all kids safe from unintentional poisoning: · Store household products safely to prevent poisoning. Young kids are often eye-level with items under the kitchen and bathroom sinks, so make sure household cleaning products and personal care products are stored up and away, out of children’s reach and sight. This includes any cleaning products in everyday use.

· Keep all household cleaning products in their original containers. Also, when buying products, look for child- resistant containers to help prevent unintentional poisonings. · Read and follow product labels. Check for ingredients that can be toxic to kids and make sure you use and store products according to the label.



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· Kids can get into things quickly, so remember not to leave cleaning products or personal care products unattended while you are using them. Remind older kids to put all cleaning products away when they are done with chores.



The Cincinnati Zoo

The holidays are over and we’re in the throes of winter. January in Cincinnati isn’t anyone’s favorite, and the ongoing pandemic has definitely thrown another wrinkle into things. This month, bundle up and keep the holiday magic alive with a trip to the Cincinnati Zoo. The Cincinnati Zoo’s Festival of Lights is happening weekends through Jan. 17, and will provide your family with an extra dose of holiday cheer to start the new year.

The Zoo’s Festival of Lights is nationally acclaimed, taking the coveted “Best Zoo Lights” trophy in 2018 and 2019. (As of this writing, the Zoo was in the running to clinch the title a third year in a row!) During the annual holiday event, four million LED lights illuminate the Zoo, with 27 inf latable animal lanterns and, new to this year, an immersive “Northern Lights” experience.

It’s all outside, and very familyand pandemic- friendly. In addition to requiring online reservations to keep crowd numbers low, the Zoo is following numerous safety precautions, so you can feel good about visiting this area attraction with your family.

Lights aside, going to the Zoo during the winter is delightful. You’ll get to see animals you probably never noticed in warmer months, like the Arctic fox and penguins. You’ll skip the crowds and enjoy a more relaxed experience. And if you go on a weekend before Jan. 17, you’ll also get an extra helping of holiday cheer with the Festival of Lights.

3400 Vine St., Cincinnati cincinnatizoo.org

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PR ESC H O O L matters

S I X R E A S O N S N O T T O S K I P T H I S F I R S T S C H O O L E X P E R I E N C E .


hen thinking about your child’s education, preschool is typically the first step. Not all children attend preschool however, making some parents wonder if it is even necessary. Don’t kids just play, color and sing songs all day? The short answer is an overwhelming “no.” Educators strongly believe that not only is preschool necessary, it helps lay the foundation for a successful school experience later on. Here are six reasons why enrolling your children in a quality preschool is a great investment in their future.

Preschool promotes social and emotional development. An important aspect of going to school is learning how to interact with others. Indeed, many kindergarten teachers feel that developing social and emotional skills is more important to kindergarten success than developing early academic skills. Kara Meador, director of early childhood for The Seven Hills School, says that in preschool, children learn to be positive members of a group. “They learn to take turns, and listen to and value what others have to say,” Meador says. ”When children attend preschool, they also learn to problem-solve appropriately, and how to demonstrate respect for others through sharing, cooperation and collaboration.”


environment new, but children may be asked to learn in a way that is new to them as well. Young learners who have been to preschool before jumping into kindergarten might have an advantage when navigating new territories. “Attending pre-kindergarten provides children with the foundations of learning, while they develop a love for learning,” Meador says.

Preschool encourages independence and trust. Many preschool-aged children are understandably dependent on their parents as the primary trusted adults in their lives. In a quality preschool program however, young children will learn to rely on other adults as well. Rabbi Yosef Y Kalmanson of Chai Tots Early Childhood Center adds that good preschool teachers will also ask students to assist their peers in different tasks to boost self-confidence. In the safety of the preschool environment, children can learn to take chances and trust themselves, their peers and their teachers.

Preschool exposes children to early math and literacy skills. A quality preschool program sets the stage for academic growth and gets kids excited about learning. Good preschools know how to introduce concepts in a developmentally appropriate way that stimulates children’s natural curiosity without overwhelming them.

Preschool makes the transition to kindergarten smoother. The structure, expectations and unfamiliarity of a kindergarten classroom can be a big adjustment for any child. Not only is the


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“There is much research that documents the positive effect that quality preschool programs have on early math and literacy skills,” says Kathy Scott, Montessori director at The Summit Country Day School. “Children who regularly

attend a preschool may gain about a third of a year of additional learning over non-preschool children.”

Preschool develops fine and gross motor skills. Just as children are expanding their cognitive skills at preschool, so are they enhancing their physical skills. From gaining the precise muscle movement to hold a pencil or use scissors to developing the coordination to run and jump in games with other kids, preschool provides multiple opportunities to improve physical skills in an enjoyable way.

Preschool offers experiences not always available at home. The ability to explore and experiment with new objects or materials in a way that may not be practical at home is another benefit to enrolling a child in preschool. Many preschools also offer opportunities for exposure to art, science, history or language in ways that are developmentally appropriate for young learners. “The prepared preschool environment provides an array of alternative learning opportunities and experiences for the young child,” Scott says. So, while playing, coloring and singing may indeed be a big part of a typical preschool day, it’s important to recognize that valuable skills are being encouraged in the process. Take the time to research and visit preschools in your area to find the best fit for your little student – and then watch as they grow and thrive in their first school experience!

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GET SCHOOLED ON PRIVATE SCHOOL Learn about the multiple benefits of a private school education. WORDS BY MAGGIE LOISELLE


rom a large Catholic high school to a small Montessori elementary, a nature- based program on 40 acres or a selective school for gifted students, private education in Southwest Ohio comes in many forms.

Nationally, there are more than 33,000 private schools educating 5 million – or roughly 10 percent– of all U.S. students. So why do families choose private schools? The reasons are as diverse as the educational offerings. If private school education has never been on your radar, here are some reasons to reconsider.

“Our schools have the freedom to be oriented to a very specific mission, to be mission-centric in a way that often isn’t as possible in other schools,” noted Claudia Daggett, executive director of the Independent Schools Association of the Central States. “When we accredit schools, we look at those factors: Do they have a distinct school identity? What are the school’s core values? How effectively do they fulfill their mission?”

Private schools have the freedom to define their own mission, which is often centered on a particular educational philosophy or value system. The school must be intentional in determining why they exist, who they will serve and what they’re going to achieve.


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Education with a Mission

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Different Ways of Teaching

Private schools aren’t bound by the same governmental regulations as public schools, including curriculum and textbook mandates, which often equates to teachers having more freedom in the classroom, supporters say.

“What we hear from parents is that they come here because of the teachers and the curriculum, because we challenge their child and help them develop a true love of learning,” says Kelley Schiess, assistant head of school at The Summit Country Day School, an independent K-12 Catholic school. “It’s not just traditional rows of desks – it’s innovation, amazing experiences and individual attention.” That f lexibility extends to assessing student progress, since private schools aren’t bound by the same standardized testing as public schools. Instead, teachers spend time on other ways of assessing knowledge.

“We don’t overpack students’ schedules. We don’t have homework in the lower grades. We do have assessments, but we don’t have excessive testing,” says Karen Crick, enrollment director at the Cincinnati Waldorf School. “Children are able to be free from stress and consider school to be joyful.”

That partnership between school and parents is especially pronounced at faith-based schools, where families look to the s chool to nurture their child’s faith as well as academic pursuits.

“I think it’s powerful when you can combine academics with religious teachings about social justice, ethical responsibility and developing a strong moral character,” Schiess says. “We can encourage children to think beyond themselves to how they can utilize their God-given talents and be of service.”

Individual Attention

Even at the largest of private schools, it’s difficult for a student to be just an anonymous face in the crowded hallway. Instead, individual attention is a major reason parents choose private school education. “Our schools characteristically offer a higher level of personalized attention. If you enroll there, they will know your child,” Daggett says. “Part of that has to do with the typically smaller schools and classes, but it also has to do with climate and culture focused on educating the whole child.”

There are many different reasons why parents choose private school education, just as there are many different types of private schools. Advocates encourage parents to assess what their family values most about education and then weigh all the options.

Community Values

By definition, private schools are communities of families with shared values, where parents must make a choice – and often some sacrifices – to take part. That often equates to a high rate of parental involvement.


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Local Spotlight: The Children's Theatre of Cincinnati

This Cincy theatrical icon has been entertaining and educating families for more than a century. 2021 is here (hooray!) and everyone is breathing a collective sigh of relief. But despite it being a new year, the problems of 2020 haven’t gone away. The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati (TCT) knows this better than anyone. Last year, the beloved company had to cancel shows, rework classes and completely reimagine the experience of live theatre. But TCT did, and somehow managed to emerge stronger, more creative and more accessible than ever.

SW Ohio Parent spoke to producing artistic director Roderick Justice about TCT’s rich history, how they’ve coped with COVID-related challenges, and what the future holds for this beloved troupe.

TCT is a nonprofit; many people may not know that. Tell us how TCT started. Our mission is to educate, entertain and engage audiences of all ages through professional theatrical productions and arts education programming, and is the core reason TCT has lasted for over a century. Under direction of Helen Schuster Martin in 1919, The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati began educational programming for children and families. In 1924, TCT was placed in the hands of The Junior League


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To accomplish this, we assembled a team of incredible wisdom, creativity and support. Our COVID ad hoc committee consisted of staff, board members and industry professionals from healthcare and human resources to ensure our plan to keep our mission alive through a pandemic was safe. In the theatre, it’s safety first!

of Cincinnati to continue the legacy as the nation’s oldest and one of the largest theatres for young audiences. Today, we are a professional theatre for children, with professional actors, staff and technicians with three divisions: TCT MainStage, TCT on Tour and TCT Academy.

The world has changed so much since you started. But the joy of live theatre is timeless. How does TCT stay true to its roots? TCT has lasted for over a century because of the incredible benefits storytelling can provide to the developmental growth of a child. The theatrical arts – whether a child is experiencing them as a participant or audience member – provide an array of educational and engaging tools.

One of the best things about TCT is the way in which you reimagine the classics and continue to evolve. How do this year's MainStage shows reflect that? TCT takes great pride in the way we build our season and provide something for everyone. Whether you like classic fairytales, book adaptations, originals or stories rooted in history, our seasons – especially our current season – truly have something everyone can enjoy.

2020 may be over, but the challenges continue. What are some of the ways TCT has pivoted during this tumultuous time? We pivoted early on to ensure our mission was in focus by providing digital content as well as limited live performances.

Looking ahead to TCT Academy's spring classes – and after that, summer camps – what sort of things are you doing to ensure kids can enjoy a safe experience? Our COVID ad hoc committee continues to guide us with plans for keeping not only the children we serve safe, but also our staff and their families safe. In addition to following all CDC and government guidelines and increased personal protective equipment (PPE), we are ensuring all children have access to theatre by continuing to make offerings virtual – including private lessons! To learn more about The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati, visit thechildrenstheatre.com.

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Switch up your family's quarantine routine for a healthier start to the new year. WORDS BY RACHAEL DUPREE

ell, you officially made it through 2020, but the “covid 19” — you know, that extra weight you took on during quarantine — is still lingering around your waistline. While pandemic life isn’t quite over, it is possible to start leaning into a healthier you for the new year, even if the approach looks a little different. Here are some tips from parents like you for getting physically and mentally fit for the new year while still in lockdown mode.


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GET DRESSED First things first: Take off your sweatpants, dig out those pre-pandemic jeans from the back of your closet, and get dressed for work. Sure maybe only your dog and your toddler will appreciate your freshened self, but you’ll definitely notice if you’ve gained some extra pounds. There’s nothing like a tight beltline as motivation to keep your hands out of the potato chips.

MAKE A MEAL PLAN When your home office isn’t far from the kitchen (or maybe is the kitchen) your day becomes one big snack fest, tipping the scale a little higher than you’d like. One way to combat the constant urge to snack is by making a meal plan, including healthy snacks, and shopping only for the things you will eat that week. Fill your cart with lots of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and lean meats, and limit processed junk foods. While opportunities to enjoy a meal at a restaurant remain limited be sure to work some of your family’s favorite meals — think a pizza night or taco night — into the plan, and take a cue from Nat Smyth, a Cincinnati-based mom, and let your kids join in the cooking fun. Maybe even let them decorate the dining area like a classy restaurant, complete with cloth napkins, candles and themed music.

TAKE MORE WALKS You miss many normal opportunities to move your body, like walking from the car to the office building or taking the stairs at work, when your commute is from the bed to the couch. To combat the sedentary nature of working from home, Emily Nicholas, a mom in West Chester, found a way to sub in one of her normal morning routines with something new. “I replaced my morning commute and podcast with a morning walk and podcast,” she says. You, too, can find times to squeeze in extra walks. Do a walking Zoom meeting, take the dog around the block at lunch, or walk instead of drive to the store when you run out of milk. Simply enjoy the fresh air by yourself, or do like Nicholas and use it as time to listen to some upbeat music, a favorite book or a podcast.

local park’s frisbee golf course. Build a snowman. Download a BollyX class to do together. Not only will you get your body moving, it’ll give you that extra family bonding time that’s been so important during the pandemic.

If you need an extra motivational boost, check out child-friendly outdoor group classes. Lillian Davis, Cincinnati-based mom and owner of Fit Mom 513, started the mom-focused workout program to help herself stay on top of exercising during the pandemic and to help encourage other moms, as well.

“We do Stroller Bootcamp classes three times a week, focusing on strength training and cardio,” Davis says. Children, typically age 4 months to 2 years, join as stroller passengers, and sometimes older kids join in, as well. “This group has helped me and so many other moms in a positive way during this hard time,” she says.

FIND YOUR INNER PEACE Good health in 2021 can be about much more than diets and exercise — it can also be about shedding sluggish attitudes, too. To ground yourself in a more peaceful year, begin your day with prayer, meditation or a yoga practice. While this might seem nearly impossible amid virtual schooling and Zoom conference calls, centering your body and quieting your mind even if for 15 minutes can make a world of difference in how you approach the rest of your day.

STICK TO YOUR BEDTIME Believe it or not, getting all your zzz’s can help you shed that extra quarantine weight. A 2016 study from the National Institutes of Health found that people who didn’t get a full night’s rest were more likely to reach for snacks and opt for less healthy foods. Find a bedtime that will allow you to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night, and at least 30 minutes before you hit the sheets, switch out your screens for a relaxing activity. Finally, find an analog alarm clock to replace your cell phone’s alarm so you’re not tempted to reach for your phone in the middle of the night.

With a few simple adjustments to your quarantine routine, you’ll be on your way to a healthier, happier you in 2021.

P L AY W I T H YOUR K ID S The gym may be off limits for now, so consider your kids your personal trainers. They definitely exude that high-energy vibe, am I right? To put it simply, play with them. Kick around a soccer ball. Check out your

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FRI 01 Glow Night Friday Nights We're different after dark. Lasers, music and blacklight transform the whole park into a crazy jumping dance club. Remember to wear a light colored shirt that glows under black light such as white or neon colors. Ages 8+. • Time: 8-10 pm,

Location: Sky Zone Trampoline Park, Dayton, skyzone. com

SAT 02-SUN 03 Light in the

Forest Experience Cincinnati Nature Center in a whole new light! Nature Center trails will sparkle with gentle lights reflecting a theme of peace, tranquility and inspiration, featuring the forest as a canvas for an artistic display of light. Registration required. • Time: 5-9 pm, Location: Cincinnati Nature Center, cincynature.org

MON 04 Kids Grab & Go Kits Free

grab and go craft kits available at all Preble County library locations. Contact your favorite branch to reserve this week’s kit: Snow Dough! How-to videos will be posted to Facebook and YouTube. • Location:

All Preble County District Library locations, preblelibrary. org

TUES 05 Fun With Feathered

Friends Preschoolers will learn about birds, make an awesome craft, play games or take a hike with their adult. This program is appropriate for 1


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adult and children ages 3-5 years old. Adults are required to stay for the duration of the program. Registration required. • Time: 10-11am, Location:

Location: Virtual via Greene County Public Library, greenelibrary.info

Caldwell Nature Preserve, cincinnatiparks.com

WED 06 Family Storytime @

Home Join us online for quality family time with books, songs and fun activities for children of all ages and caregivers to enjoy together. Registration required. • Time: 4-4:15 pm, Location: Virtual via Dayton Metro Library, daytonmetrolibrary.org

Virtual Storytime: Movers and Shakers You and your child will shake it together! Sing, dance and enjoy music, movement and fun. Recommended for ages 1-4. Please register to receive an email invitation to this online event. • Time: 9-9:30 am, Location: Virtual via Cincinnati Hamilton Co. Public Library, cincinnatilibrary.org

THURS 07 Art Play Hike: Mt.

Storm Join us this month as we explore Mt. Storm, take part in hands-on art making and try out some kid-friendly yoga poses. Bundle up in the great outdoors with your little one, warm up with some coffee or hot cocoa and take home an art activity bag. For ages 2-6. Registration required. • Time: 10:30-11:30 am, Location: Mt. Storm Park, facebook. com/events/823915225023106

FRI 08 Preschool Storytime with

Ms. Janet We can't get together in person, but we can still have fun with stories, rhymes and songs! Register online to join an interactive story time with Ms. Janet and other kids from Yellow Springs and around Greene County. • Time: 10:30-11:30am,

Library Playdate Play and explore with your kiddo at the Westwood Library. Each month we learn about a new theme and get hands-on with different learning stations. For ages birth-5. Registration required. • Time: 10:30-11:30 am, Location: Westwood Branch, Cincinnati Hamilton Co. Library, cincinnatilibrary.org

SAT 09 Winter Hiking Club Getting

outdoors makes us happy and healthy, especially in the wintertime! Participants will arrive and meet the instructor for a brief talk about the topic of the day before setting off on the self-guided hike. Individuals attending three or more hikes will receive a Winter Hiking Club patch. All ages. Staggered start times. •

Time: 10-11:30 am, Location: Grant Park, Centerville, cwpd.org

SUN 10 Family STEAM Night Explore the wonders of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM) with your family! Enjoy an evening of hands-on learning activities and games, as you become engineers to tackle difficult real-world problems. • Time: 6-7:30 pm, Location: The STEM Lab, Sharonville, cincystemlab.com

TUES 12 Tennis Fitness Fun This

class is designed for the whole family and can be done from your living room, garage, basement or anywhere that works for you. In partnership with the USTA/ OVTA, a tennis kit will be available for the first 100 families to sign up. • Time: 5-5:45 pm, Location: Virtual, cincinnatitennisfoundation.org

THURS 14 Virtual Storytime:

Chapter Books Join our virtual and interactive Zoom storytime where we read aloud 1-2 chapters from a children's chapter book. Contact the Groesbeck Branch for the title of the current book so you can follow along each week! Registration needed, one per family. • Time: 10:30-10:45 am, Location: Virtual

via Cincinnati Hamilton County Library, cincinnatilibrary. org

FRI 22-SUN 24 POPS Presents

JMR’s Greatest Hits Enjoy highlights from JMR’s brilliant Pops tenure, including Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, iconic movie themes, as well as favorites from pop, rock and jazz. • Time: See website, Location: Music Hall, Cincinnati, cincinnatisymphony.org

THURS 28 Baby & Toddler FRI 15 Preschool Storytime with

Ms. Janet We can't get together in person but we can still have fun with stories, rhymes and songs! Register online to join an interactive story time with Ms. Janet and other kids from Yellow Springs and around Greene County. • Time: 10:30-11:30 am, Location: Virtual via Greene County Public Library, greenelibrary.info

SAT 16 Fire and Ice Club We will

combine the elements of fire and ice during a winter hike and campfire. We will search for icicles, icy puddles and snowy patches that we can paint! Afterwards we will warm up around the campfire and make s’mores. Ages 8-12. • Time: 4-5:30 pm, Location: Bill Yeck Park, Centerville, cwpd.org

MON 18 Kids Grab & Go Kits Free

grab and go craft kits available at all Preble County Library locations. Contact your favorite branch to reserve this week’s kit: Moving Polar Bear! How-to videos will be posted to Facebook and YouTube. •

Time: All library open times while supplies last, Location: All Preble County District Library locations, preblelibrary.org

Storytime @ Home It’s never too early to grow a child’s love of learning. Join us online for nursery rhymes, songs, fingerplays and stories that encourage early literacy skills in your child. For babies and toddlers up to 3 years, with a caregiver. Registration required. • Time: 10:30-10:45 am, Location: Virtual via Dayton Metro Library, daytonmetrolibrary.org

FRI 29 Blacklight Night at Wild

Axe Bust out your favorite pair of neons and experience throwing axes in the dark! All our axes and targets are painted in blacklight paint to make the entire place GLOW. Ages 13+. • Time: 6-11 pm, Location: Wild Axe Throwing, Dayton, wildaxethrowing. com

SAT 30 Alfie the Dino Canvas

A special painting class for kiddos ages 7 and up. Follow along step by step to create your own Alfie the Dino canvas painting! Registration required. • Time: 11 am-12:30 pm, Location: Painting With a Twist Dayton, paintingwithatwist.com

TUES 19 Preschool Storytime


Virtual via Dayton Metro Library, daytonmetrolibrary.org

Christmas Nights of Lights Through January 9, 2021. The perfect social-distancing holiday activity! Experience this amazing light show synchronized to holiday music through your car radio. With 2.5 miles of holiday displays, Christmas Nights of Lights welcomes carloads of families and friends to enjoy this Christmas tradition. • Location: Coney Island

@ Home Join us online for stories, songs and other fun learning activities designed to develop the language, literacy and social skills your preschooler needs for school success. For children ages 3-5. Registration required. • Time: 10:30-10:45am, Location:

WEDS 20 Hilarious Hat Days and

Unnatural Adventure Hike Only the most hilarious hats will do. Pull out all of the stops and create a whimsical hat with natural objects or challenge yourself to re-create a fashion gem with recycled objects. Frolic in the garden searching for the unnatural during a self-guided Unnatural Scavenger Hunt. • Time: 10:30am, Location: Glenwood Gardens/ Highfield Discovery Garden, greatparks.org

THURS 21 Wearable Mosaics

Workshop Learn how to create a mini-mosaic bracelet, necklace or keychain. Cut stained glass and tiles to shape into a one of a kind, wearable mosaic. Registration required. Ages 13+. • Time: 6-8 pm,

Location: Filton Center for Creative Arts, fittoncenter.org

Preschool Nature Series Oh, Deer! Can you find two deer hiding along the purple trail? While you are searching, take some time to learn about our local whitetail deer by completing a scavenger hunt. This is a self-guided program. Ages 3-6 with adult companion. • Time: 8 am, Location: Bill Yeck Park, Centerville, cwpd.org

Park, coneyislandpark.com/event/christmas-lightshow

Penguin Days January 18 Through March 12. Enjoy discounted admission and waddle to the Zoo and save money during Penguin Days! Penguin Parades return at 11am on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays in 2021! (Special walks on MLK Day, Monday, January 18 & Presidents’ Day, Monday, February 15). Plus, although it will look a little different than year’s past, daily Penguin Encounters are back every day at 11:00am from January 18 – February 28! • Location: Cincinnati Zoo, cincinnatizoo.


Winter Escape – New Years Savings at EnterTRAINment Junction January 4 Through January 31. Come in from the cold and visit the Junction this January! Save $2 off a full-price Do-It-All ticket, when you purchase online. Note: The Junction is closed Wednesdays in January. • Location: EnterTRAINment Junction, entertrainmentjunction.com

Bumper Cars + Skating at the UC Health Ice Rink Through February 15. The ice rink features two different kinds of sessions: Bumpers + Skating ($15): During this split ice-session, a barrier will divide the rink into two sections, with skaters on one side and cars on the other. As a patron, you can enjoy both sides. OR Skating Only ($10): During this session, the entire ice is available for ice skating. Masks required. Reservations can be made two weeks in advance. Review pricing, rink rules, bumper car requirements, and COVID19 information before purchasing your non-refundable spot. • Location: Downtown Cincinnati, myfountainsquare.com/ ice-rink/

Garfield, The Musical with Cattitude January 21 - February 14 (Streaming begins Jan 28). In this musical adaptation of everyone’s favorite sarcastic tubby tabby, Garfield awakens to find his birthday has fallen on a Monday. The horror! To make matters worse, all his friends have completely forgotten it’s his big day. Feeling rejected, Garfield leaves the comforts of home but soon realizes in the outside there’s no T.V., the food is garbage (literally), and animal control is always just around the corner. In the end, Garfield learns little things like, you know, the value of friendship and that “home is where the heart – and the food – is.” Ages 4+. • Location: The

Children's Theatre of Cincinnati, thechildrenstheatre. com/shows/garfield-the-musical-with-cattitude/

Holiday Train Display at Glenwood Gardens Through January 10. The "Great Circle Line & Points North Rail Road" holiday train display themes the times of the steam engine with whimsical buildings, landscaping and special effects as trains travel through a wintery world. The display will be featured in the Garden Workshop and is open to the public. Viewing is covered in the cost of Highfield Discovery Garden admission ($2.75 per person). • Location: Glenwood Gardens, greatparks.org

Winter Nights, River Lights Through January 15. Enjoy a socially-distanced family activity with a beautifully lit holiday walk across the Purple People Bridge and along the river at Newport on the Levee. One thousand lights, lighted projections and holiday music round out this festive experience. • Location: Purple People Bridge, greatparks.org

A Very Merry Garden Holiday Through January 3. Krohn Conservatory’s annual holiday show is a can’t-miss tradition for Cincinnati families. Open daily. • Location: Krohn Conservatory, cincinnatiparks.com/krohn

SPACE: A Journey to Our Future January 28 Through May 2. This highly interactive exhibition ignites the desire for space exploration and discovery, sparking imaginations, and inspiring new generations of explorers to dream of the possibilities that lie ahead. Highlights include touching actual rocks from the lunar surface and the red planet, exploring a Mars Base Camp while walking through a full-size habitat and work pod, taking a spin on a centrifuge, and looking far into the future of our exploration of the universe. • Location: National Air Force Museum, nationalmuseum.af.mil

January 2021 I ohParent.com



Expanding Parental Choice in K-12 Education The Bishop Leibold School Commitment

Do you feel like K-12 private school options are out of reach for your family due to cost? Actually, in many cases, it is much more affordable than you may think.

· The Reading Lab @ Bishop Leibold provides specialized tutoring during the school day to students who are dyslexic. Cost for students on IEP’s are covered by the JPS and parents pay a discounted rate if their dyslexic child is not on an IEP.

It is important that you are fully aware of the various parent choice strategies in place in Ohio and at Bishop Leibold specifically. It is our commitment to do all that we can so that families can choose our school for your children.

· The total cost of educating every Bishop Leibold student includes support from our parishes; St. Henry Church, Our Lady of Good Hope Catholic Church, and St. Mary of the Assumption.

Parent choice options and education support for children in private schools in Ohio are quite extensive. For decades, Ohio has ranked among the top tier of states for support to families to make private schools affordable. This support includes busing, vouchers/ scholarships and support to students with special needs.

The philosophy (and commitment) at Bishop Leibold is to do everything we can to ensure that the school is affordable to all families who seek our school experience for their children.

To enhance affordability and quality at Bishop Leibold, we choose to participate in programs such as:

· Generous contributors provide support toward the total cost for all Bishop Leibold students through gifts to the Annual Fund and several fund-raising projects. · Ohio’s EdChoice Scholarships are family income based tuition scholarships that cover up to 100% of the tuition for participating private schools. The law just expanded family eligibility to qualify all families with a household income of $65,000 or less for a family of four. · The State’s Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship (JPS) supports students that are on an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) to attend a participating private school of their choice. Scholarships fund services outlined in the IEP, and at



ohParent.com I January 2021

Bishop Leibold PROUDLY commits to making our high quality educational and personal faith development experience affordable.

Bishop Leibold the scholarship covers some of the tuition costs for most of the JPS students.

Hopefully, this information will encourage you to believe that private education is within reach for your family. You deserve to know everything that is available to your children when it comes to their education options! For more information on Bishop Leibold and all that we have to offer your student, please visit bishopleibold.org.



January 2021 I ohParent.com



fun & SUN

WACKY calendar 01.2021






















































SOURCE: daysoftheyear.com

January 2021 I ohParent.com