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Last weekend of November is full of community-based learning opportunities and  family events for holiday fun + memories.

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity Hosts 2021 Gingerbread Build at Home! Register a team by 12noon on Wednesday, December 1, and pick up your gingerbread kit on Saturday, December 4. Contestants will have six days to construct their dream confectionery dwellings and submit three photos to gingerbread@pvhabitat.org by Thursday, December 9 at midnight. Log in Saturday, December 11 at 3pm for a live virtual award ceremony. A minimum donation of $100 is required per team; additional fundraising is encouraged! For more information and to register, go to www.pvhabitat.org/events/gingerbread-build. Questions? Contact Amy Landry at amy@pvhabitat.org. Thank you for supporting the building of real houses for real families in western Massachusetts.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Buy 4 private music lessons & get 1 free!

Creativity, self-expression, and the joy of music are gifts that last a lifetime, so the Community Music School of Springfield is making music lessons easy & affordable for your loved one this holiday season. All of their packages for private music lessons feature buy-4 get-1-free pricing, the choice of virtual or in-person instruction, and perfect match teachers. Ordering online or over the phone is easy & they can deliver gift certificates via email or mail. You choose the length of the lesson (30, 45, 60 min.), and the recipient selects the instrument & time that works best for their schedule when they redeem their gift package. Start date for lessons is Jan 2022. Learn more or purchase today! communitymusicschool.com/gifts 413-732-8428.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Berkshire Music School
Pittsfield, MA

Give the gift of music this holiday season!

Give the gift of music this holiday season with the Berkshire Music School (BMS) 4-lesson trial package! The package includes four consecutive 30-minute lessons in any orchestral or band instrument as well as voice or theory for $140. One-month instrumental rental included. Take a private lesson in-person at BMS’s historic campus or online from the comfort of your home. Private lessons may be arranged for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes each week to meet the individual student’s needs and may begin at any point throughout the year. BMS’s fun Community Group Classes are offered on a pay-what-you-can basis with a new winter session starting in January. Visit the BMS website for class offerings and check out the new online registration feature!

FEATURED HOLIDAY GIVING
The Odyssey Bookshop
South Hadley, MA

The Gift of Reading is a monthly program that aims to find books that are tailored to fit the age, interests, and reading level of the child in your life.

Are you looking for a unique gift for a child in your life? The Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, MA, invites you to Give the Gift of Reading! For just $25 a month, the child that you enroll will receive a handpicked book based on the age, interests, and reading level that you provide. From newborns to young adults, no child is too young or too old to join! Still have questions? Don’t hesitate to get in touch with their Gift of Reading Coordinator at kids@odysseybks.com for more information. Odyssey Bookshop. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street, South Hadley MA.

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
Pioneer Valley Ballet performs The Nutcracker
Northampton, MA

December 10-12, 2021 in Northampton, MA

Pioneer Valley Ballet returns with the beloved holiday classic, The Nutcracker. Join Clara as she battles the Rat King to save the Nutcracker Prince, then travel through the enchanted Snow Forest and beautiful Kingdom of Sweets. This production is a treasured community event that features dancers from across the Pioneer Valley performing roles ranging from sparkling snowflakes to the tiniest reindeer. A one-hour performance, live on stage December 10-12, 2021 at the Academy of Music in Northampton. Perfect for families of all ages. General admission seating. Reserve your tickets and view the health & safety policy at aomtheatre.com. For more information about the Pioneer Valley Ballet company and school, visit pioneervalleyballet.org.

FEATURED PEDIATRIC
OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY
Sensory SpOT
East Longmeadow, MA

Registering now for 2022!

At Sensory SpOT, children explore ways to foster the growth of their emotional well-being, a strong mind-body connection, & strengthen their foundational skills necessary for learning. They create a positive learning environment that builds on your child’s strengths to allow them to flourish and grow their skills. Located in East Longmeadow, MA, Sensory SpOT offers individualized & group-based occupational therapy services and wellness groups for children provided by a Licensed Occupational Therapist and/or Occupational Therapy staff. Sessions are 45-60 mins. They are registering now for January 2022 SpOT and Wellness groups. Space is limited & registration required for services. Visit sensoryspotma.com for info & registration.

FEATURED SCHOOL
Four Winds School
Gill, MA

Four Winds School in Gill, MA, is now accepting applications from 5th, 6th, and 7th grade students for the current school year and Fall 2022. The Four Winds curriculum provides a balance between focused training in basic academic skills and the freedom for students to explore their interests. Teacher and student work together to design an individualized academic program based on these evaluations and the student’s learning style. Visit Four Winds School at fourwindsschool.info to learn more. 

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

2022 Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

2022 Preschool & Daycare Directory

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

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Over 150 events are featured for the first week of December to support interests, education, and community engagement throughout western MA!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
Playing in the Cold: A Talk on Winter Gear for Infants and Toddlers
Northampton, MA

Friday, Dec 10 @ 4:30pm

Outdoor creative free-play is essential to every child’s health and well-being. However, winter in Western MA can be challenging with keeping kids warm while playing in the snow and exploring their frozen landscape! On Friday, December 10, 2021, at 4:30pmWild Garden of Childhood Nursery in Northampton, MA, is hosting a talk, “Playing in the Cold: A Talk on Winter Gear for Infants and Toddlers.” with Nicole Thurrell. Nicole is from the Institute for Wild Med: Wilderness and Emergency Medicine and will be talking about playing in the cold with infants and toddlers. For more information: 413-231-4454; wildgardenofchildhood.comwildgardenofchildhood@gmail.comAll are welcome! 

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
Pioneer Valley Ballet performs The Nutcracker
Northampton, MA

December 10-12, 2021 in Northampton, MA

Pioneer Valley Ballet returns with the beloved holiday classic, The Nutcracker. Join Clara as she battles the Rat King to save the Nutcracker Prince, then travel through the enchanted Snow Forest and beautiful Kingdom of Sweets. This production is a treasured community event that features dancers from across the Pioneer Valley performing roles ranging from sparkling snowflakes to the tiniest reindeer. A one-hour performance, live on stage December 10-12, 2021 at the Academy of Music in Northampton. Perfect for families of all ages. General admission seating. Reserve your tickets and view the health & safety policy at aomtheatre.com. For more information about the Pioneer Valley Ballet company and school, visit pioneervalleyballet.org.

FEATURED EVENT
Piti Théâtre Company Presents: DinoFest
Greenfield, MA

December 11-12, 2021 in Greenfield, MA

Dinos return to the Valley! Piti Theatre & Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association are bringing DinoFest back to Greenfield (and online) on Saturday & Sunday, December 11 & 12, 2021. Blending science, arts, and community-building, DinoFest features “Dexter and the Dinosaurs,” a historical dramedy for all ages at the Garden Cinemas with special guests (and their fossils) from the Jurassic Roadshow, a Dino Improv session, a child dino expert Zoom session, and more! Dinofest grew out of Piti’s “Your Town” program that leverages local history to help us better understand the present. Schedule: ptco.org/dino. All events are FREE to the public. The Greenfield Garden Cinemas is located at 361 Main St. in Greenfield, MA.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Berkshire Music School
Pittsfield, MA

Give the gift of music this holiday season!

Give the gift of music this holiday season with the Berkshire Music School (BMS) 4-lesson trial package! The package includes four consecutive 30-minute lessons in any orchestral or band instrument as well as voice or theory for $140. One-month instrumental rental included. Take a private lesson in-person at BMS’s historic campus or online from the comfort of your home. Private lessons may be arranged for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes each week to meet the individual student’s needs and may begin at any point throughout the year. BMS’s fun Community Group Classes are offered on a pay-what-you-can basis with a new winter session starting in January. Visit the BMS website for class offerings and check out the new online registration feature!

FEATURED HOLIDAY GIVING
The Odyssey Bookshop
South Hadley, MA

The Gift of Reading is a monthly program that aims to find books that are tailored to fit the age, interests, and reading level of the child in your life.

Are you looking for a unique gift for a child in your life? The Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, MA, invites you to Give the Gift of Reading! For just $25 a month, the child that you enroll will receive a handpicked book based on the age, interests, and reading level that you provide. From newborns to young adults, no child is too young or too old to join! Still have questions? Don’t hesitate to get in touch with their Gift of Reading Coordinator at kids@odysseybks.com for more information. Odyssey Bookshop. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street, South Hadley MA.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Buy 4 private music lessons & get 1 free!

Creativity, self-expression, and the joy of music are gifts that last a lifetime, so the Community Music School of Springfield is making music lessons easy & affordable for your loved one this holiday season. All of their packages for private music lessons feature buy-4 get-1-free pricing, the choice of virtual or in-person instruction, and perfect match teachers. Ordering online or over the phone is easy & they can deliver gift certificates via email or mail. You choose the length of the lesson (30, 45, 60 min.), and the recipient selects the instrument & time that works best for their schedule when they redeem their gift package. Start date for lessons is Jan 2022. Learn more or purchase today! communitymusicschool.com/gifts 413-732-8428.

FEATURED SCHOOL
Four Winds School
Gill, MA

Four Winds School in Gill, MA, is now accepting applications from 5th, 6th, and 7th grade students for the current school year and Fall 2022. The Four Winds curriculum provides a balance between focused training in basic academic skills and the freedom for students to explore their interests. Teacher and student work together to design an individualized academic program based on these evaluations and the student’s learning style. Visit Four Winds School at fourwindsschool.info to learn more. 

FEATURED PRESCHOOL
The Common School
Amherst, MA

In-Person/Adaptable

Preschool ♦ Ages 3-12yrs
For more information: 413-256-8989; www.commonschool.org.

Children only get one preschool experience. Experience The Common School. The Common School, serving children ages 3-12 years, has two preschool classrooms for children ages 3-5 years. These classrooms provide strong student/teacher ratios, a diverse and inclusive community, opportunities for experiential learning, a stellar social and emotional curriculum, environmental awareness, play based learning, significant time spent outdoors and many resources, such as an extensive library, music and movement class. Prospective families are invited to meet their teachers and tour their newly renovated facilities, including outdoor learning spaces for extended time outside.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home
HFVS Gratitude Episode features songs that celebrate feeling good about yourself and about life, and being positive and grateful.

Eric Herman gets downright happy in this show featuring songs that celebrate feeling good about yourself and about life, and being positive and grateful.

HFVS Songs of Gratitude Episode
with Guest DJ, Eric Herman
Listen Now
Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Explore your interests through a seasonal lens.
Read More
Home
Join award-winning children's recording artist Lindsay Munroe as she guest DJ's the Hilltown Family Variety Show.

Join award-winning children’s recording artist Lindsay Munroe as she guest DJ’s the Hilltown Family Variety Show. She’ll play her favorite songs from childhood that influenced her songwriting and shaped her love of music. She will also share her favorite kindie performers making music for kids’ families today! It’s sure to be a great show full of kindness, love, and music.

HFVS with Guest DJ, Lindsay Munroe
Listen Now
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Holiday season arrives this week with Thanksgiving + learning opportunities through the lens of food, heritage, and habitat!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity Hosts 2021 Gingerbread Build at Home! Register a team by 12noon on Wednesday, December 1, and pick up your gingerbread kit on Saturday, December 4. Contestants will have six days to construct their dream confectionery dwellings and submit three photos to gingerbread@pvhabitat.org by Thursday, December 9 at midnight. Log in Saturday, December 11 at 3pm for a live virtual award ceremony. A minimum donation of $100 is required per team; additional fundraising is encouraged! For more information and to register, go to www.pvhabitat.org/events/gingerbread-buildQuestions? Contact Amy Landry at amy@pvhabitat.org. Thank you for supporting the building of real houses for real families in western Massachusetts.

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
South Hadley, MA

Saturday, November 20 @ 1pm (FREE)

Join the Odyssey Bookshop for a live, in-person event on Saturday, November 20, 2022, at 1pm with Kristen Nordstrom, author of STEM picture book Mimic Makers: Biomimicry Inventors Inspired by NatureShe will be in conversation with Dr. Al Crosby and Dr. Duncan Irschick from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, two of the ten real-life inventors featured in the book. The event is free and open to the public and will take place in the community meeting room at South Hadley Public Library. Register by clicking here.

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
Pioneer Valley Ballet performs The Nutcracker
Northampton, MA

December 10-12, 2021 in Northampton, MA

Pioneer Valley Ballet returns with the beloved holiday classic, The Nutcracker. Join Clara as she battles the Rat King to save the Nutcracker Prince, then travel through the enchanted Snow Forest and beautiful Kingdom of Sweets. This production is a treasured community event that features dancers from across the Pioneer Valley performing roles ranging from sparkling snowflakes to the tiniest reindeer. A one-hour performance, live on stage December 10-12, 2021 at the Academy of Music in Northampton. Perfect for families of all ages. General admission seating. Reserve your tickets and view the health & safety policy at aomtheatre.com. For more information about the Pioneer Valley Ballet company and school, visit pioneervalleyballet.org.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Buy 4 private music lessons & get 1 free!

Creativity, self-expression, and the joy of music are gifts that last a lifetime, so the Community Music School of Springfield is making music lessons easy & affordable for your loved one this holiday season. All of their packages for private music lessons feature buy-4 get-1-free pricing, the choice of virtual or in-person instruction, and perfect match teachers. Ordering online or over the phone is easy & they can deliver gift certificates via email or mail. You choose the length of the lesson (30, 45, 60 min.), and the recipient selects the instrument & time that works best for their schedule when they redeem their gift package. Start date for lessons is Jan 2022. Learn more or purchase today! communitymusicschool.com/gifts 413-732-8428.

FEATURED PEDIATRIC
OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY
Sensory SpOT
East Longmeadow, MA

Registering now for 2022!

At Sensory SpOT, children explore ways to foster the growth of their emotional well-being, a strong mind-body connection, & strengthen their foundational skills necessary for learning. They create a positive learning environment that builds on your child’s strengths to allow them to flourish and grow their skills. Located in East Longmeadow, MA, Sensory SpOT offers individualized & group-based occupational therapy services and wellness groups for children provided by a Licensed Occupational Therapist and/or Occupational Therapy staff. Sessions are 45-60 mins. They are registering now for January 2022 SpOT and Wellness groups. Space is limited & registration required for services. Visit sensoryspotma.com for info & registration.

FEATURED MIDDLE SCHOOL
Four Winds School
Gill, MA

Four Winds School in Gill, MA, is now accepting applications from 5th, 6th, and 7th grade students for the current school year and Fall 2022. The Four Winds curriculum provides a balance between focused training in basic academic skills and the freedom for students to explore their interests. Teacher and student work together to design an individualized academic program based on these evaluations and the student’s learning style. Visit Four Winds School at fourwindsschool.info to learn more. 

FEATURED PRESCHOOL
Giving Tree School
Gill, MA

Outdoor Program.

Preschool ♦ Ages 2.9-5
For more information: givingtreeschool.org, admin@givingtreeschool.org, or call 413-863-9218.

Celebrate the whole child! The Giving Tree preschool program is thoughtfully designed to support young children’s social-emotional growth, problem-solving, and conflict resolution skills. Students enjoy ample outdoor exploration and playtime each day in their rambling and rugged Outdoor Classroom. Only 15 minutes from downtown Greenfield, set among the woods and pastures of Gill. Giving Tree is committed to fostering active, hands-on early learning experiences that are playful and purposeful, laying the foundation for a lifelong love of learning. Licensed by EEC and accredited by NAEYC & HighScope. Sliding scale tuition.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Explore your interests through a seasonal lens.
Read More
Home
Discover 150 smart events in western Massachusetts that are both fun & engaging while supporting interests through community engagement!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity Hosts 2021 Gingerbread Build at Home! Register a team by 12noon on Wednesday, December 1, and pick up your gingerbread kit on Saturday, December 4. Contestants will have six days to construct their dream confectionery dwellings and submit three photos to gingerbread@pvhabitat.org by Thursday, December 9 at midnight. Log in Saturday, December 11 at 3pm for a live virtual award ceremony. A minimum donation of $100 is required per team; additional fundraising is encouraged! For more information and to register, go to www.pvhabitat.org/events/gingerbread-buildQuestions? Contact Amy Landry at amy@pvhabitat.org. Thank you for supporting the building of real houses for real families in western Massachusetts.

In June of 2021, the Center School moved to a beautiful brand new building, situated on 30 acres of land to explore. Admissions season is underway, and the school is booking more tours than ever. Valley families are drawn to the Center School’s approach– weaving justice, joy, collaboration, innovation, and love into a unique educational experience. If you’re looking for a school where kids are immersed in 21st Century curriculum and in the timeless world of nature and play that is so essential to childhood, visit www.centerschool.net to learn more and to book an in-person tour today! Please email Lauren Obregón, Director of Admissions and Outreach, at l.obregon@centerschool.net with any questions.

FEATURED IN-PERSON EVENT
South Hadley, MA

Saturday, November 20 @ 1pm (FREE)

Join the Odyssey Bookshop for a live, in-person event on Saturday, November 20, 2021, at 1pm with Kristen Nordstrom, author of STEM picture book Mimic Makers: Biomimicry Inventors Inspired by NatureShe will be in conversation with Dr. Al Crosby and Dr. Duncan Irschick from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, two of the ten real-life inventors featured in the book. The event is free and open to the public and will take place in the community meeting room at South Hadley Public Library. Register by clicking here.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Berkshire Music School
Pittsfield, MA

Virtual, In-Person/Outdoors, In-Person/Indoors, Private Tutoring or Coaching

Berkshire Music School is enrolling for the fall 2021 semester! Take a private lesson or Community Group Class in-person at BMS’s historic campus or online. Private lessons are offered in any orchestral or band instrument as well as voice & theory. Lessons may be arranged for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes each week to meet the needs of the individual student and may begin at any point during the year. Online lessons are conducted via Zoom, FaceTime, or Skype, and students should have access to a computer or iPad with internet connection. BMS’s fun Community Group Classes are offered on a pay-what-you-can basis, with suggested tuition listed for each course. For more information: cpearson@berkshiremusicschool.org; 413-442-1411; www.berkshiremusicschool.org

The Berkshires’ Academy for Advanced Musical Studies (BAAMS), is an innovative nonprofit music-education organization offering online, after-school lessons for students ages 12-18, taught by a world-class faculty of musician-composers, recording artists, performers, and educators. BAAMS’s unique learning system encourages students of any level of experience to learn to compose music and improvise. Their students will express their own life experiences and individual perspectives through their instrument(s). Students are taught trumpet/brass instruments, drums, piano/keyboards, saxophone/woodwinds, guitar, and electric bass (a brief, private audition takes place before admission). Join BAAMS today! For more information: info@berkshiresacademyams.org; 718-483-5911; www.berkshiresacademyams.org

FEATURED SCHOOL
Four Winds School
Gill, MA

Four Winds School in Gill, MA, is now accepting applications from 5th, 6th, and 7th grade students for the current school year and Fall 2022. The Four Winds curriculum provides a balance between focused training in basic academic skills and the freedom for students to explore their interests. Teacher and student work together to design an individualized academic program based on these evaluations and the student’s learning style. Visit Four Winds School at fourwindsschool.info to learn more. 

FEATURED PRESCHOOL
Giving Tree School
Gill, MA

Outdoor Program.

Preschool ♦ Ages 2.9-5
For more information: givingtreeschool.org, admin@givingtreeschool.org, or call 413-863-9218.

Celebrate the whole child! The Giving Tree preschool program is thoughtfully designed to support young children’s social-emotional growth, problem-solving, and conflict resolution skills. Students enjoy ample outdoor exploration and playtime each day in their rambling and rugged Outdoor Classroom. Only 15 minutes from downtown Greenfield, set among the woods and pastures of Gill. Giving Tree is committed to fostering active, hands-on early learning experiences that are playful and purposeful, laying the foundation for a lifelong love of learning. Licensed by EEC and accredited by NAEYC & HighScope. Sliding scale tuition.

FEATURED PRESCHOOL
Nonotuck Community School
Florence, MA

Daycare. Preschool. Early Childhood Education Program

Preschool ♦ Ages 15mo-5yrs
For more information: info@nonotuck.org; 413-586-5996; www.nonotuck.org.

Nonotuck Community School is accepting applications for 2022-23. Nonotuck has served the greater Northampton area for 40+ years. Their school includes five classrooms, art studio, large & sunny indoor play space, and two large & natural outdoor play spaces, including climbing equipment & garden areas. Their curriculum is play-based & inspired by progressive early childhood education theory. Children have ample time for free-play, exercise, & outdoor time. Teachers create small group activities that emphasize arts, science & creativity. They have daily large-group circle time for stories, discussion & music. Nonotuck is a parent cooperative, licensed child care center. Teachers meet & surpass state requirements for early childhood educators.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Explore your interests through a seasonal lens.
Read More
Home
Award winning children’s musician Flor Bromley takes us on a journey around the world to dance and learn about traditional dances from different lands. From the bottom of Latinoamerica to the top of the Irish mountains, we will discover plenty of wonderful and varied music.

Award winning children’s musician Flor Bromley takes us on a journey around the world to dance and learn about traditional dances from different lands. From the bottom of Latinoamerica to the top of the Irish mountains, we will discover plenty of wonderful and varied music.

HFVS Traditional Dances from the World Episode
with Guest DJ, Flor Bromley
Listen Now
Read More
Home
New England heritage is celebrated this weekend in Western MA with events connected to the season that support learning and a sense of place.

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

FEATURED EVENT: CiderDays: November 6-7, 2021

The 27th Annual CiderDays will celebrate all things cider, apples, and orchards with the 2021 CiderDays Cider Trail, featuring local orchards and cideries in Western Massachusetts that you can drive to in the safety of your car. With over 20 venues on the trail, some will have special offerings, including cooking demos at Clarkdale Fruit Farms, apple and cider tastings at various orchards, special cider blend sale for hard cider making at Pine Hill Orchards, spectacular views, tastings and picnicking at West County Cider and New Salem Preserves and Cider, campfire and warm mulled cider at Cameron’s Winery and so much more. CiderDays takes place November 6-7, 2021. Check CiderDays.org often for new activities being offered.

The Hartsbrook School in Hadley, MA. Imagine a school that values and encourages the unique qualities of your child: The Hartsbrook School provides just that, with warmth and attentiveness. Beautiful outdoor classrooms, storytelling, music, and creative problem-solving lay the foundations for future learning and deep social connection. Children’s imagination and empathy are awakened through the rich curriculum. Walks in the woods, visits to the school’s farm animals, and tending the gardens develop an awareness of, and care for, the natural world. PreK thru high school. Begin your exploration with an individual Zoom meeting. Call 413-586-1908 x116 to schedule your appointment and imagine the potential for your child. Preschool ♦ Ages 2.9-6yrs. For more information: admissions@hartsbrook.org; 413-586-1908; www.hartsbrook.org.

In June of 2021, the Center School moved to a beautiful brand new building, situated on 30 acres of land to explore. Admissions season is underway, and the school is booking more tours than ever. Valley families are drawn to the Center School’s approach– weaving justice, joy, collaboration, innovation, and love into a unique educational experience. If you’re looking for a school where kids are immersed in 21st Century curriculum and in the timeless world of nature and play that is so essential to childhood, visit www.centerschool.net to learn more and to book an in-person tour today! Please email Lauren Obregón, Director of Admissions and Outreach, at l.obregon@centerschool.net with any questions.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Berkshire Music School
Pittsfield, MA

Virtual, In-Person/Outdoors, In-Person/Indoors, Private Tutoring or Coaching

Berkshire Music School is enrolling for the fall 2021 semester! Take a private lesson or Community Group Class in-person at BMS’s historic campus or online. Private lessons are offered in any orchestral or band instrument as well as voice & theory. Lessons may be arranged for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes each week to meet the needs of the individual student and may begin at any point during the year. Online lessons are conducted via Zoom, FaceTime, or Skype, and students should have access to a computer or iPad with internet connection. BMS’s fun Community Group Classes are offered on a pay-what-you-can basis, with suggested tuition listed for each course. For more information: cpearson@berkshiremusicschool.org; 413-442-1411; www.berkshiremusicschool.org

FEATURED PRESCHOOL
Nonotuck Community School
Florence, MA

Daycare. Preschool. Early Childhood Education Program

Preschool ♦ Ages 15mo-5yrs
For more information: info@nonotuck.org; 413-586-5996; www.nonotuck.org.

Nonotuck Community School is accepting applications for 2022-23. Nonotuck has served the greater Northampton area for 40+ years. Their school includes five classrooms, art studio, large & sunny indoor play space, and two large & natural outdoor play spaces, including climbing equipment & garden areas. Their curriculum is play-based & inspired by progressive early childhood education theory. Children have ample time for free-play, exercise, & outdoor time. Teachers create small group activities that emphasize arts, science & creativity. They have daily large-group circle time for stories, discussion & music. Nonotuck is a parent cooperative, licensed child care center. Teachers meet & surpass state requirements for early childhood educators.

The Berkshires’ Academy for Advanced Musical Studies (BAAMS), is an innovative nonprofit music-education organization offering online, after-school lessons for students ages 12-18, taught by a world-class faculty of musician-composers, recording artists, performers, and educators. BAAMS’s unique learning system encourages students of any level of experience to learn to compose music and improvise. Their students will express their own life experiences and individual perspectives through their instrument(s). Students are taught trumpet/brass instruments, drums, piano/keyboards, saxophone/woodwinds, guitar, and electric bass (a brief, private audition takes place before admission). Join BAAMS today! For more information: info@berkshiresacademyams.org; 718-483-5911; www.berkshiresacademyams.org

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Wool Yarn
Home

In the 19th century, Western Massachusetts saw a huge merino sheep boom when many farms purchased Australian sheep for their incredibly soft fleece to produce wool for textiles. The Hilltowns’ landscape provided an ideal pasture for livestock grazing. Although this craze for merino wool did not last long, and some of the farms no longer exist, there is still a rich and long tradition of fiber farms in our region that continue to produce fiber and yarn for hand knitters and textile artists.

The benefit of purchasing local yarn is that you are more involved in and aware of the entire process of producing your wool product. Unlike commercially produced yarn, which is often processed and shipped from overseas, local yarn speaks to the land and farmers that cared for the sheep and cultivated the land. Often, the wool is processed locally and requires many hands to create it: from the farmer that cares for the animals to the sheep shearer, spinners and hand-dyers, locally grown yarn offer the hand knitter a deeper connection to our community’s agricultural roots. It also supports the local economy and helps foster collaboration and sustainable consumption.

Get your hands on a skein of local wool and learn about the history of merino sheep and the nature of their wool!


What It’s Like to Be a Bird
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Explore your interests through a seasonal lens.
Read More
Home
HFVS Happy Haunted Halloween Episode with guest hosts Mr. Singer and his 10-year-old nephew, Connor Thomas Martin, is an hour of fun. These silly, spooky songs celebrate a favorite holiday, HALLOWEEN! Mr. Singer plays original spooky tunes and reads a story about Mary Shelley, the teenaged author of Frankenstein. Connor tells personal stories and gives a little tutorial on the eery-sounding musical saw. It’s a rock-n-roll Halloween radio fun show that will get the whole clan psyched about HALLOWEEN!

HFVS Haunted Halloween Episode with guest hosts Mr. Singer and his 10-year-old nephew, Connor Thomas Martin, is an hour of fun. These silly, spooky songs celebrate a favorite holiday, HALLOWEEN! Mr. Singer plays original spooky tunes and reads a story about Mary Shelley, the teenaged author of Frankenstein. Connor tells personal stories and gives a little tutorial on the eery-sounding musical saw. It’s a rock-n-roll Halloween radio fun show that will get the whole clan psyched about HAAALLLLLOOOOWWWEEEEENNNN!!!

HFVS Haunted Halloween Episode
with Guest DJ, Mr. Singer of the Sharp Cookies
Listen Now
Read More
Home

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

Hilltown Families is a proud sponsor of Mister G’s Halloween Fiesta!

Calling all ghosts, goblins, vampires, and witches! Latin GRAMMY award-winning artist and children’s book author, MISTER G, will be hosting his annual Halloween Fiesta concert outdoors at The Common School in Amherst (521 S. Pleasant Street). Showtime is 11am on Sunday, October 31, 2021. (Moved from: October 30). Special guest stars include percussionist Marcos Carreras and his students from the Springfield Conservatory of the Arts. Come ready to dance and sing along to MISTER G’s spooky, original, bilingual songs. The concert is made possible by the generosity of local businesses and major sponsors, River Valley Co-op and the Community Foundation of Western MA. Admission is FREE and costumes (for kids and adults!) are encouraged. 

FEATURED SKI & WINTER GEAR SALE: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 30. 9AM-2PM.

The Ski and Winter Gear Sale, held annually by the Amherst Historical Society & Museum, returns on October 30, 2021, from 9am-2pm, under the big tent at 67 Amity Street, in downtown Amherst, with deals and choices so big – it is scary! Proceeds benefit the museum. Shoppers can choose from a vast selection of new and used downhill, cross-country skis, ski poles, helmets, snowshoes, boots, skates, snowboards, outdoor clothing (including jackets, gloves, mittens, and hats), all in adult and youth sizes. This event will observe strict safety guidelines with periodic cleaning of surfaces and social distancing measures in place. Masks are required. Costumes are appreciated! For information visit, their website: amhersthistory.org.

FEATURED EVENT: CiderDays: November 6-7, 2021

The 27th Annual CiderDays will celebrate all things cider, apples, and orchards with the 2021 CiderDays Cider Trail, featuring local orchards and cideries in Western Massachusetts that you can drive to in the safety of your car. With over 20 venues on the trail, some will have special offerings, including cooking demos at Clarkdale Fruit Farms, apple and cider tastings at various orchards, special cider blend sale for hard cider making at Pine Hill Orchards, spectacular views, tastings and picnicking at West County Cider and New Salem Preserves and Cider, campfire and warm mulled cider at Cameron’s Winery and so much more. CiderDays takes place November 6-7, 2021. Check CiderDays.org often for new activities being offered.

The Hartsbrook School in Hadley, MA. Imagine a school that values and encourages the unique qualities of your child: The Hartsbrook School provides just that, with warmth and attentiveness. Beautiful outdoor classrooms, storytelling, music, and creative problem-solving lay the foundations for future learning and deep social connection. Children’s imagination and empathy are awakened through the rich curriculum. Walks in the woods, visits to the school’s farm animals, and tending the gardens develop an awareness of, and care for, the natural world. PreK thru high school. Begin your exploration with an individual Zoom meeting. Call 413-586-1908 x116 to schedule your appointment and imagine the potential for your child. Preschool ♦ Ages 2.9-6yrs. For more information: admissions@hartsbrook.org; 413-586-1908; www.hartsbrook.org.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Explore your interests through a seasonal lens: STEM, Haunted History, Masks, Jack O’Lanterns, Autumn Foliage, Ghost Stories, & Cats!
Read More
Home
This week’s guest DJ, Heidi Swedberg, shares songs about noises, monsters and the Boogie Man, performs Halloween songs live with her ukulele, and shares the Flamenco spiced “Story of the Cat and the Chicken” (with ukulele flamenco by her partner Daniel Ward). A little spooky and a lotta silly!

Heidi Swedberg, shares songs about noises, monsters and the Boogie Man, performs Halloween songs live with her ukulele, and shares the Flamenco spiced “Story of the Cat and the Chicken” (with ukulele flamenco by her partner Daniel Ward). A little spooky and a lotta silly!

HFVS Halloween Episode
with Guest DJ, Heidi Swedberg
Listen Now
Read More
Home
With Halloween around the corner, our list of events is full of spooktacular opportunities to learn, celebrate, and connect with community!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

COMMUNITY-BASED EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES

THEATER STUDIES: Berkshire Theatre Group. 413-997-4444. 111 South St, Pittsfield, MA.

ECOLOGY. Chester-Blandford State Forest. 413-354-6347. 800 US-20, Chester, MA.

TRANSPORTATION HISTORY. Chester Railway Station. 413-354-7878. 10 Prospect St, Chester, MA.

ART STUDIES. Cottage Street Studios. 413-527-2711. 1 Cottage St. Easthampton, MA.

GARDENING. Grow Food Northampton Organic Community Garden. 413-320-4799. 140 Meadow Street. Florence, MA.

Hilltown Families is a proud sponsor of Mister G’s Halloween Fiesta!

Calling all ghosts, goblins, vampires, and witches! Latin GRAMMY award-winning artist and children’s book author, MISTER G, will be hosting his annual Halloween Fiesta concert outdoors at The Common School in Amherst (521 S. Pleasant Street). Showtime is 11am on Saturday, October 30, 2021. (Rain date: October 31). Special guest stars include percussionist Marcos Carreras and his students from the Springfield Conservatory of the Arts. Come ready to dance and sing along to MISTER G’s spooky, original, bilingual songs. The concert is made possible by the generosity of local businesses and major sponsors, River Valley Co-op and the Community Foundation of Western MA. Admission is FREE and costumes (for kids and adults!) are encouraged. 

FEATURE SCHOOL: THE HARTSBROOK SCHOOL IN HADLEY, MA.

Beautiful outdoor classrooms, deep academic inquiry, music and art in everyday learning, active land stewardship, and a culture of compassion: that is the Hartsbrook School. During this time of uncertainty, Hartsbrook has provided students with a grounding and nurturing foundation every day. Discover how meaningful a school experience can be and enjoy a vibrant, active parent community. PreK thru high school. Begin your exploration with an individual Zoom meeting. Call 413-586-1908 x116 to schedule your appointment and imagine the potential for your child.  The Hartsbrook School is located at 193 Bay Road in Hadley, MA. For more information, visit online at www.hartsbrook.org.

FEATURED SKI & WINTER GEAR SALE: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 30. 9AM-2PM.

The Ski and Winter Gear Sale, held annually by the Amherst Historical Society & Museum, returns on October 30, 2021, from 9am-2pm, under the big tent at 67 Amity Street, in downtown Amherst, with deals and choices so big – it is scary! Proceeds benefit the museum. Shoppers can choose from a vast selection of new and used downhill, cross-country skis, ski poles, helmets, snowshoes, boots, skates, snowboards, outdoor clothing (including jackets, gloves, mittens, and hats), all in adult and youth sizes. This event will observe strict safety guidelines with periodic cleaning of surfaces and social distancing measures in place. Masks are required. Costumes are appreciated! For information visit, their website: amhersthistory.org.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Take a trial music lesson!

Community Music School of Springfield invites you to take a trial music lesson this fall! Discover how music lessons encourage students of all ages to harness their creativity, grow as learners & connect with a music-loving community. Lessons at CMSS are offered virtually & in-person by professional teaching artists who help each student meet their unique goals. Their registration team can also walk you through renting or purchasing your instrument. Prelude Preschool of the Arts, also located at CMSS’ historic downtown Springfield location, has a few slots in their arts-integrated early learning program. Visit online or give them a call to learn more: 413-732-8428. Enrolling is easy, and payment plans are available.

FEATURED HOMESCHOOL PROGRAM
Art Adventure Camp
Easthampton, MA

November 2-23, 2021
10% Discount – Code: “HILLTOWN”

You’re invited to Art Adventure Camp! Join for a 4-week homeschool program for 6-11-year-olds in Sharona Color’s beautiful Easthampton art studio. This class is great for kids who like to try a little bit of everything. Each week students will explore different mediums and techniques, including painting, drawing, fiber art, and collage. Children are sure to come home with a renewed sense of confidence, special artworks, and new friends. Camp runs November 2-23, 2021 from 10am-12pm. Space is limited to 10 students. Sign-ups are now openReceive a 10% discount by using the code: “HILLTOWN” at checkout now through 10/22/21.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Academy at Charlemont
Charlemont, MA

The Academy at Charlemont is a community-oriented independent day school for grades 6-12. For 40 years, Academy students have become engaged learners and articulate leaders through small classes, rigorous coursework, diverse electives in the arts and beyond, inclusive athletics, personalized advising, and a variety of student leadership opportunities. Visit The Academy’s campus along the Deerfield River and meet faculty, students, and admissions staff at an Open House on Sunday, October 24th from 1-3pm. Generous financial aid and daily round-trip bus service from Amherst, Northampton, and the Hilltowns are available. Ready to learn more about The Academy family for your family? Find details and Open House registration here.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Bement School
Deerfield, MA

The Bement School, founded in 1925 and located in Deerfield, is a co-educational day and boarding school serving 200 students in kindergarten through grade 9. While Bement is scheduling individual campus tours in person, a series of virtual open houses are offered. To learn more about the upper school (grades 6 through 9) join the October 26 event or October 28 to learn about the lower school (kindergarten through grade 5). A member of the admission office and faculty will share what makes Bement an incredible education. Registration is required. Zoom invitations will be sent upon registration. Applications for fall 2022 are being accepted now. Contact the admission office at admit@bement.org with questions or to register for an open house.

FEATURED TEEN THEATRE PROGRAM
Valley Playwright Mentoring
Virtual

Valley Playwright Mentoring: A theatre program for teens with stories to tell & things to say! 

Valley Playwright Mentoring (VPM), Piti Théâtre Company’s program for teens, presents “Podcasts 2.0” on Sunday, October 24, 2021, at 6pm!   Now rehearsing online, VPM gives young actor-playwrights the chance to craft scenes based on stories from their lives. Listen to the teens give each scene/podcast context, and then hear the premiere over Zoom. VPM is an afterschool theatre program for teens ages 13 and up and is accepting registrations for teens interested in participating in this year’s group, which begins in November 2021. No previous theatre experience is required! Learn more about the program and sign-up for the Podcast 2.0 Premiere at ptco.org/vpm.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Support interests through the lens of food, habitat, and heritage with our list of learning ideas.
Read More
Home
New England heritage is celebrated this week with events that support learning through the lens of autumn foliage, fall festivals, Halloween, and more!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

[CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER]

[CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER]

Art in the Field Family Program, October 16, 2021, 1–3pm. [CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER] Location: Smith College Museum of Art and tent on Seelye Lawn in Northampton, MA (between Neilson Library and SCMA). Free, drop-in, no registration required. Masks welcomed and encouraged. Enjoy an afternoon of outdoor artmaking, scavenger hunts, and special guests from Lifting Spirits Miniature Therapy Horses. Art featuring horses can be found on every floor of the museum. How did each artist bring the animals to life through movement, creative use of color, and even interesting textures? Create an artful interpretation of horses using cardboard and patterned papers and then go on a scavenger hunt for equine art in the museum. Happy trails! In case of rain, organizers will cancel this event.

Hilltown Families is a proud sponsor of Mister G’s Halloween Fiesta!

Calling all ghosts, goblins, vampires, and witches! Latin GRAMMY award-winning artist and children’s book author, MISTER G, will be hosting his annual Halloween Fiesta concert outdoors at The Common School in Amherst (521 S. Pleasant Street). Showtime is 11am on Saturday, October 30, 2021. (Rain date: October 31). Special guest stars include percussionist Marcos Carreras and his students from the Springfield Conservatory of the Arts. Come ready to dance and sing along to MISTER G’s spooky, original, bilingual songs. The concert is made possible by the generosity of local businesses and major sponsors, River Valley Co-op and the Community Foundation of Western MA. Admission is FREE and costumes (for kids and adults!) are encouraged. 

FEATURE SCHOOL: THE HARTSBROOK SCHOOL IN HADLEY, MA.

Beautiful outdoor classrooms, deep academic inquiry, music and art in everyday learning, active land stewardship, and a culture of compassion: that is the Hartsbrook School. During this time of uncertainty, Hartsbrook has provided students with a grounding and nurturing foundation every day. Discover how meaningful a school experience can be and enjoy a vibrant, active parent community. PreK thru high school. Begin your exploration with an individual Zoom meeting. Call 413-586-1908 x116 to schedule your appointment and imagine the potential for your child.  The Hartsbrook School is located at 193 Bay Road in Hadley, MA. For more information, visit online at www.hartsbrook.org.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Take a trial music lesson!

Community Music School of Springfield invites you to take a trial music lesson this fall! Discover how music lessons encourage students of all ages to harness their creativity, grow as learners & connect with a music-loving community. Lessons at CMSS are offered virtually & in-person by professional teaching artists who help each student meet their unique goals. Their registration team can also walk you through renting or purchasing your instrument. Prelude Preschool of the Arts, also located at CMSS’ historic downtown Springfield location, has a few slots in their arts-integrated early learning program. Visit online or give them a call to learn more: 413-732-8428. Enrolling is easy, and payment plans are available.

FEATURED HOMESCHOOL PROGRAM
Art Adventure Camp
Easthampton, MA

November 2-23, 2021
10% Discount – Code: “HILLTOWN”

You’re invited to Art Adventure Camp! Join for a 4-week homeschool program for 6-11-year-olds in Sharona Color’s beautiful Easthampton art studio. This class is great for kids who like to try a little bit of everything. Each week students will explore different mediums and techniques, including painting, drawing, fiber art, and collage. Children are sure to come home with a renewed sense of confidence, special artworks, and new friends. Camp runs November 2-23, 2021 from 10am-12pm. Space is limited to 10 students. Sign-ups are now openReceive a 10% discount by using the code: “HILLTOWN” at checkout now through 10/22/21.

FEATURED PROGRAM
Hilltown Sleddogs
West Chesterfield, MA

In-Person/Outdoors, In-Person/Indoors

Kids & Canines! Balto & Togo! Topaz & Trixie! Serum Run & Iditarod! What do these all have in common? Sled Dogs & Working Dogs. Siberian Huskies & Alaskan Huskies Life Saving Run by Dog Team to Nome & Thrilling Race by Dog Team to Nome. Dogs who love kids & kids who love dogs! All can be found at Hilltown Sleddogs with Musher, Marla BB & her 16 huskies. They spent the last 2 winters in Alaska, mushing 750 miles from Nenana to Nome on the Serum Run Trail. Then racing 300 & 200 miles on the Yukon Quest Trail in preparation for Iditarod. Slide show, video, & children’s book presentation is available for classrooms, assembly programs, educational demonstrations & fairs indoors or outdoors. Homeschool programs are offered too. Always with these dogs! For more information: hilltownsleddogs@gmail.com; 413-296-0187; www.hilltownsleddogs.com.

FEATURED TEEN THEATRE PROGRAM
Valley Playwright Mentoring
Virtual

Valley Playwright Mentoring: A theatre program for teens with stories to tell & things to say! 

Valley Playwright Mentoring (VPM), Piti Théâtre Company’s program for teens, presents “Podcasts 2.0” on Sunday, October 24, 2021, at 6pm!   Now rehearsing online, VPM gives young actor-playwrights the chance to craft scenes based on stories from their lives. Listen to the teens give each scene/podcast context, and then hear the premiere over Zoom. VPM is an afterschool theatre program for teens ages 13 and up and is accepting registrations for teens interested in participating in this year’s group, which begins in November 2021. No previous theatre experience is required! Learn more about the program and sign-up for the Podcast 2.0 Premiere at ptco.org/vpm.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Academy at Charlemont
Charlemont, MA

Open House: Sunday, Oct 24, 1-3pm

The Academy at Charlemont is a community-oriented independent day school for grades 6-12. For 40 years, Academy students have become engaged learners and articulate leaders through small classes, rigorous coursework, diverse electives in the arts and beyond, inclusive athletics, personalized advising, and a variety of student leadership opportunities. Visit The Academy’s campus along the Deerfield River and meet faculty, students, and admissions staff at an Open House on Sunday, October 24th from 1-3pm. Generous financial aid and daily round-trip bus service from Amherst, Northampton, and the Hilltowns are available. Ready to learn more about The Academy family for your family? Find details and Open House registration here.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Bement School
Deerfield, MA

Virtual Open Houses: Oct 26 & 28 @ 6:30pm

The Bement School, founded in 1925 and located in Deerfield, is a co-educational day and boarding school serving 200 students in kindergarten through grade 9. While Bement is scheduling individual campus tours in person, a series of virtual open houses are offered. To learn more about the upper school (grades 6 through 9) join the October 26 event or October 28 to learn about the lower school (kindergarten through grade 5). A member of the admission office and faculty will share what makes Bement an incredible education. Registration is required. Zoom invitations will be sent upon registration. Applications for fall 2022 are being accepted now. Contact the admission office at admit@bement.org with questions or to register for an open house.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Self-directed learning through the seasons! Support interests through the lens of food, habitat, and heritage with our list of learning ideas.
Read More
Home
Explore autumn w/guest DJ, Lucy Kalantari. With music spanning decades from the 1930s to the present, everyone has something to say about autumn.

Explore the joys of autumn with two time GRAMMY winner, guest DJ Lucy Kalantari. With music spanning decades from the 1930s to the present she includes the voices of Ella Fitzgerald, Earth, Wind & Fire, The White Stripes, Joanie Leeds, Mister G, and many more. Everyone has something to say about autumn.

HFVS Autumn Episode
with Guest DJ, Lucy Kalantari
Listen Now
Read More
Home
Fall festivals, autumn icons, and outdoor adventures await you during October in Western Massachusetts. Select from our list of events across the region!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

[CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER]

Art in the Field Family Program, October 16, 2021, 1–3pm. [CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER] Location: Smith College Museum of Art and tent on Seelye Lawn in Northampton, MA (between Neilson Library and SCMA). Free, drop-in, no registration required. Masks welcomed and encouraged. Enjoy an afternoon of outdoor artmaking, scavenger hunts, and special guests from Lifting Spirits Miniature Therapy Horses. Art featuring horses can be found on every floor of the museum. How did each artist bring the animals to life through movement, creative use of color, and even interesting textures? Create an artful interpretation of horses using cardboard and patterned papers and then go on a scavenger hunt for equine art in the museum. Happy trails! In case of rain, organizers will cancel this event.

For homeschoolers and schoolers with five museums to mine for information and activities, the Springfield Museums does what few others can—combine art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss into fun-filled, engaging experiences that reinforce critical thinking and observation skills through inquiry-based learning. The Springfield Museums offer a broad range of educational programs for all ages and interest levels, and they are happy to custom-build an experience for your small group. For more information: fieldtrips@springfieldmuseums.org; 413-263-6800 x322; springfieldmuseums.org/groups/school.

FEATURED SCHOOL
Stoneleigh-Burnham School

Greenfield, MA

Founded in 1869, Stoneleigh-Burnham School (SBS), an independent boarding & day school for girls in grades 7-12, has been a part of the Pioneer Valley for more than 150 years. SBS attracts dynamic students from more than 12 states and over 12 countries and is known for its powerful academics, debate & public speaking, performing & visual arts, and equestrian programs. SBS was the first girls’ school in New England to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program and is the only secondary school in the U.S. to offer the British Horse Society Certification program. SBS’s boarding tuition is now 10% less than the national average while their day tuition is 17% less than the national average. For more information: 413-774-2711; sbschool.org.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Bement School
Deerfield, MA

The Bement School, founded in 1925 and located in Deerfield, is a co-educational day and boarding school serving 200 students in kindergarten through grade 9. While Bement is scheduling individual campus tours in person, a series of virtual open houses are offered. To learn more about the upper school (grades 6 through 9) join the October 26 event or October 28 to learn about the lower school (kindergarten through grade 5). A member of the admission office and faculty will share what makes Bement an incredible education. Registration is required. Zoom invitations will be sent upon registration. Applications for fall 2022 are being accepted now. Contact the admission office at admit@bement.org with questions or to register for an open house.

FEATURED PROGRAM
Hilltown Sleddogs
West Chesterfield, MA

In-Person/Outdoors, In-Person/Indoors

Kids & Canines! Balto & Togo! Topaz & Trixie! Serum Run & Iditarod! What do these all have in common? Sled Dogs & Working Dogs. Siberian Huskies & Alaskan Huskies Life Saving Run by Dog Team to Nome & Thrilling Race by Dog Team to Nome. Dogs who love kids & kids who love dogs! All can be found at Hilltown Sleddogs with Musher, Marla BB & her 16 huskies. They spent the last 2 winters in Alaska, mushing 750 miles from Nenana to Nome on the Serum Run Trail. Then racing 300 & 200 miles on the Yukon Quest Trail in preparation for Iditarod. Slide show, video, & children’s book presentation is available for classrooms, assembly programs, educational demonstrations & fairs indoors or outdoors. Homeschool programs are offered too. Always with these dogs! For more information: hilltownsleddogs@gmail.com; 413-296-0187; www.hilltownsleddogs.com.

FEATURED MUSICAL THEATER CLASSES
The Academy of Music Theatre
Florence & Holyoke, MA

Register now! Youth Fall Classes at the Academy of Music Theatre are open for enrollment. Come sing and dance in musical theater classes for ages 6-8, 9-11, and 13-18.

Classes will be held at Pine Box Studios in Florence and at El Mercado in Holyoke on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings starting October 19th.

For more information, visit www.aomtheatre.com.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

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Follow Your Interests!

Support a sense of place with these seasonal self-directed learning ideas for the first week of October in Western Massachusetts.
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The season of fall is the topic of the day. Two happy Dads from the Minneapolis-based group The Jolly Pops are our Guest DJs for an hour of family music this week. They chat up their favorite things about this time of year and spin a set of songs that will make you want to jump into a leaf pile.

The season of fall is the topic of the day. Two happy Dads from the Minneapolis-based group The Jolly Pops are our Guest DJs for an hour of family music this week. They chat up their favorite things about this time of year and spin a set of songs that will make you want to jump into a leaf pile.

HFVS Fall Family Fun Episode with Guest DJ, The Jolly Pops
Listen Now
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Learning through the lens of the seasons! October is rich in learning opportunities and family fun throughout Western MA.

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

COMMUNITY-BASED EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES

MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Amelia Park Children’s Museum. 413-572-4014. 29 S Broad St, Westfield, MA.

AGRICULTURE: Apex Orchards. 413-625-2744. 225 Peckville Rd. Shelburne, MA.

HERBALISM: Blazing Star Herbal School. Conway, MA.

LIVING HISTORY: Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

HIKING: Mt. Tom State Reservation Stone House Visitor Center. 413-527-4805. 125 Reservation Rd, Holyoke, MA.

FEATURED HIGH SCHOOL: Buxton School in Williamstown, MA

Buxton School is a small, progressive, and diverse boarding and day college preparatory school nestled in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts. Since 1928, their faculty and staff have delighted in welcoming students in grades 9-12 to their egalitarian community to inspire and nurture their academic, artistic, and social growth. Buxton is an all-gender college preparatory school in Williamstown, MA, and is hosting an Admissions Open House on Monday, October 11 at 10am for prospective families to learn more. RSVP: admissions@buxtonschool.org or call 413-458-3919. For more information about Buxton School, visit them online at buxtonschool.org.

For homeschoolers and schoolers with five museums to mine for information and activities, the Springfield Museums does what few others can—combine art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss into fun-filled, engaging experiences that reinforce critical thinking and observation skills through inquiry-based learning. The Springfield Museums offer a broad range of educational programs for all ages and interest levels, and they are happy to custom-build an experience for your small group. For more information: fieldtrips@springfieldmuseums.org; 413-263-6800 x322; springfieldmuseums.org/groups/school.

FEATURED MUSICAL THEATER CLASSES
The Academy of Music Theatre
Florence & Holyoke, MA

Register now! Youth Fall Classes at the Academy of Music Theatre are open for enrollment. Come sing and dance in musical theater classes for ages 6-8, 9-11, and 13-18.

Classes will be held at Pine Box Studios in Florence and at El Mercado in Holyoke on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings starting October 19th.

For more information, visit www.aomtheatre.com.

FEATURED SCHOOL
Stoneleigh-Burnham School

Greenfield, MA

Founded in 1869, Stoneleigh-Burnham School (SBS), an independent boarding & day school for girls in grades 7-12, has been a part of the Pioneer Valley for more than 150 years. SBS attracts dynamic students from more than 12 states and over 12 countries and is known for its powerful academics, debate & public speaking, performing & visual arts, and equestrian programs. SBS was the first girls’ school in New England to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program and is the only secondary school in the U.S. to offer the British Horse Society Certification program. SBS’s boarding tuition is now 10% less than the national average while their day tuition is 17% less than the national average. For more information: 413-774-2711; sbschool.org.

FEATURED BEGINNER MUSIC CLASSES
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Community Music School of Springfield offers safe, weekly, in-person music classes for your youngest musician! Babies & toddlers and their parents/caregivers will love Little Notes, a class designed for bonding, brain development, fun, and musical connection with others. For your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten music lover, CMSS offers beginner classes in guitar, piano, Suzuki violin, and bucket drumming. No instruments or experience is required as your child is introduced to the instrument while collaborating and having fun with the others in their small group. Each class is taught by expert musicians committed to helping your little one develop a lifelong love for music and creativity. Enrolling is easy, and payment plans are available.

FEATURED MUSIC SCHOOL
Berkshire Music School
Pittsfield, MA

Virtual, In-Person/Outdoors, In-Person/Indoors, Private Tutoring or Coaching

Berkshire Music School is enrolling for the fall 2021 semester! Take a private lesson or Community Group Class in-person at BMS’s historic campus or online. Private lessons are offered in any orchestral or band instrument as well as voice & theory. Lessons may be arranged for 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes each week to meet the needs of the individual student and may begin at any point during the year. Online lessons are conducted via Zoom, FaceTime, or Skype, and students should have access to a computer or iPad with internet connection. BMS’s fun Community Group Classes are offered on a pay-what-you-can basis, with suggested tuition listed for each course. For more information: cpearson@berkshiremusicschool.org; 413-442-1411; www.berkshiremusicschool.org

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Read More
Home
Ari and Ezra from The Oot n’ Oots play songs and tell stories to highlight the evolution of rock music from the 1950s to the 1970s, covering major trends and introducing listeners of all ages to a distinctly American musical tradition.

Ari and Ezra from The Oot n’ Oots play songs and tell stories to highlight the evolution of rock music from the 1950s to the 1970s, covering major trends and introducing listeners of all ages to a distinctly American musical tradition.

HFVS Intro to the History of Rock Episode
with Guest DJs, Ari and Ezra from The Oot n’ Oots
Listen Now
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Home
Hawks are migrating and apples are ready for picking! This week find events to support learning in Western Massachusetts.

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

Discover classes and in-person programming happening through out western Massachusetts!
FEATURED HIGH SCHOOL: Buxton School in Williamstown, MA

Buxton School is a small, progressive, and diverse boarding and day college preparatory school nestled in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts. Since 1928, their faculty and staff have delighted in welcoming students in grades 9-12 to their egalitarian community to inspire and nurture their academic, artistic, and social growth. Buxton is an all-gender college preparatory school in Williamstown, MA, and is hosting an Admissions Open House on Monday, October 11 at 10am for prospective families to learn more. RSVP: admissions@buxtonschool.org or call 413-458-3919. For more information about Buxton School, visit them online at buxtonschool.org.

FEATURED BEGINNER MUSIC CLASSES
Community Music School of Springfield
Springfield, MA

Community Music School of Springfield offers safe, weekly, in-person music classes for your youngest musician! Babies & toddlers and their parents/caregivers will love Little Notes, a class designed for bonding, brain development, fun, and musical connection with others. For your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten music lover, CMSS offers beginner classes in guitar, piano, Suzuki violin, and bucket drumming. No instruments or experience is required as your child is introduced to the instrument while collaborating and having fun with the others in their small group. Each class is taught by expert musicians committed to helping your little one develop a lifelong love for music and creativity. Enrolling is easy, and payment plans are available.

FEATURED MUSICAL THEATER CLASSES
The Academy of Music Theatre
Florence & Holyoke, MA

Register now! Youth Fall Classes at the Academy of Music Theatre are open for enrollment. Come sing and dance in musical theater classes for ages 6-8, 9-11, and 13-18.

Classes will be held at Pine Box Studios in Florence and at El Mercado in Holyoke on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings starting October 19th.

For more information, visit www.aomtheatre.com.

FEATURED SCHOOL
Stoneleigh-Burnham School

Greenfield, MA

Founded in 1869, Stoneleigh-Burnham School (SBS), an independent boarding & day school for girls in grades 7-12, has been a part of the Pioneer Valley for more than 150 years. SBS attracts dynamic students from more than 12 states and over 12 countries and is known for its powerful academics, debate & public speaking, performing & visual arts, and equestrian programs. SBS was the first girls’ school in New England to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program and is the only secondary school in the U.S. to offer the British Horse Society Certification program. SBS’s boarding tuition is now 10% less than the national average while their day tuition is 17% less than the national average. For more information: 413-774-2711; sbschool.org.

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 25,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

Preschool and Daycare Directory for Western Massachusetts

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

Read More
Home

Follow Your Interests!

Read More
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