Threads of Connection – Make a Quilt Square for the ICA’s Virtual Quilt

At a time when community is more important than ever, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, has found a unique way to foster this connection through their Threads of Connection Virtual Quilt. Originally an installation by Merrill Comeau in ICA’s Art Lab, this community quilt project has now gone virtual!

The ICA is inviting participants to create a quilt square, using materials from home, that represents what makes you, you. They ask: “What makes you special? What do you love about your community? What are you proud of? What do you believe in?” Think about what makes you unique, have fun making your quilt square, and submit your quilt square to the ICA for a chance to be a part of their virtual quilt community. Be sure to also check out their website as well as their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages for inspiration and further instructions. 

After creating your quilt square, take a moment to enjoy these family-friendly titles — available from Overdrive/Libby and hoopla with your library card number — and their stories of community, memory, quilts, and the threads that connect us all: 

Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt by Deborah Hopkinson
The Nesting Quilt by Catherine Falwell
Cloth Lullaby by Amy Novesky
The Quilt by Gary Paulsen
The Quilt Walk by Sandra Dallas

Kids in the Kitchen: A Curated Collection of Cookbooks and Activities to do at Home

Our friends at the Boston Children’s Museum, the Museum of Science, and Institute of Contemporary Art have been hard at work creating fun and educational STEAM content that you can do at home, even in the kitchen. We’ve rounded up the best-of-the-best kitchen science activities for the whole family to try!

Watch Boston Children’s Museum’s Kitchen Science for Kids YouTube series, which includes how-to videos on making butter, composting with kitchen scraps, and fermenting your own veggies. Their Beyond the Chalkboard site is another great resource for food-related activities, from becoming an effective food detective, to designing a healthy dip for fruits and veggies, to making art with food. Be sure to also check out their daily activity archive for more wonderful and engaging content! 

At the Museum of Science, learn about acids and bases using blueberries and other ingredients in your kitchen! Take a peek at their #MOSatHome page for even more fun family STEM activities, virtual exhibits, and presentations (including a snake taking a bath!). 

And over at the Institute of Contemporary Art, check out their guide for eco-dyeing fabric for crafting using fruit and veggie scraps and other kitchen materials. Interested in more great activities? Their Art Lab at home has everything from DIY flip books to virtual quilts (maybe made with all that fabric you just eco-dyed).

After you’ve tried these awesome activities, work on those kitchen and nutrition skills with this curated list of cookbooks for junior chefs:

On hoopla:

Stir Crack Whisk Bake: A Little Book about Little Cakes by America’s Test Kitchen

This interactive board book walks little bakers through making the tiniest of sweet treats — cupcakes!

Plant, Cook, Eat!: A Children’s Cookbook by Joe Archer & Caroline Craig

This cookbook takes you from the garden to the kitchen with handy tips & tricks for starting a kitchen garden and how to turn your harvest into healthy, delicious, kid-friendly meals.

Kitchen Science Lab for Kids by Liz Lee Heinecke 

Using basic kitchen ingredients, everyone from toddlers to big kids can whip up these exciting experiments at home!

On Libby:

Cooking Class by Deanna F. Cook

Designed for 6- to 12-year-olds, this instructive cookbook teaches budding mini chefs basic kitchen techniques and over 50 yummy recipes.

National Geographic Kids Cookbook by Barton Seaver

Part craft and activity book, part how-to and cookbook, master chef Barton Seaver’s National Geographic Kids Cookbook teaches you how to start a kitchen garden, host a family cooking competition, and everything in between.

On hoopla & Libby:

The Complete Cookbook for Young Chefs by America’s Test Kitchen Kids

From the pros at America’s Test Kitchen come over 750 kid-tested and approved recipes for all skill levels with the goal of empowering young chefs to feel confident in the kitchen.

On Overdrive and hoopla

The Forest Feast for Kids by Erin Gleeson 

*a hoopla Bonus Borrow through today

This colorful cookbook includes the most kid-friendly recipes from the vegetarian hit The Forest Feast