Wondering what to do with the kids this summer?
Baltimore County officials hope you'll take advantage of local educational resources and activities—many of which were showcased during the 2011 Summer Learning Expo.
"We do this to familiarize parents with the services," said Merry Macer, supervisor of Parent Support Services of Baltimore County Public Schools. "The resources are plentiful and helpful."
While many of the activities are tailored for younger children, teens and adults are also encouraged to get involved, Macer said. Adult literacy classes, information on gaining a General Educational Development certificate and language support for Spanish-speakers are available to all county residents.
The expo also featured a paper-cutting demonstration by Anna Ogara, a leader at the Resource Centers for Families and Schools at Middlesex Elementary School. Letter and shape cutters, poster makers, a button maker, a 25-inch laminator and more are available to Baltimore County residents at the center for a small fee, Ogara said.
"If you can think it, we can help you create it," she said.
Justine Schaeffer, a naturalist at Cromwell Valley Park, helped to promote county parks at the expo.
"It's an inexpensive family outing," Schaeffer said. "Parents need to know that it's not something scary to let the kids play outside and explore."
Sneaks the Cat, the state library system's mascot, also attended the event, with the help of Jake Jones, an eighth-grade student at .
More than 40 children—many receiving a congratulatory high five from Sneaks— signed up to participate in the library's annual summer reading program during the expo, said Roxane Gnau, library program manager.
Additional information on these programs and more can be found on the Parent Support Services of Baltimore County Public Schools website.