Startups that are keeping kids busy this summer

13th Apr 2016
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Rising mercury is not the only concern for many working parents. Engaging our cute little bundle of a hyperactive toddler (who will turn the house upside down when bored) in somethingwhen the schools are closed, is priority number one. ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ and ‘Jungle book’ will keep them busy just for a couple of days. That expensive summer camp may provide relief for another week or so. Of course, grandparents visit will probably add another week. And yet, after few tickets booking, last minute calling and few thousand rupees later, we are still looking, at least, a month to fill up. If only our offices were closed along with schools.

Well, worry not, the startup (justice) league to rescue. A number of startups are offering engaging and fun ways to keep your kids busy this summer. Here is a quick snapshot of it and mind it – it's just a representative list.

Busy Kid

Mom bloggers aggregators

As we all know from Bollywood, nothing in the world can beat mom-power. Startups are learning to harness this power by means of community content sharing. MyCity4Kids and Parentree are two such portals full of engaging content, tips and tricks, DIY activities, and more. Many parents are benefitting immensely from the guidance and tips they are getting on these portals. Thanks to active moms you can now find a wide range of activities to do at home or visit in your area through these forums. My favourite is kids activities blog on MyCity4Kids, which has everything from recipes to hobbies after school and is a frequent rescuer when I am clueless about what next.

Engagement kits

Though you cannot take time off from office, for whatever time you are at home, you can spend it with your kids doing a number of activities. There are many startups that will ship engagement kits to your doorstep. Flinto Box and Magic Crate are at the forefront of this. They have subscription-based model. Once subscribed you get an activity kit delivered to your house every month. These kits are made for kids agedtwo to eight years. They keep kids busy for hours with well-thought educational activities. If you are not a regular subscriber, some offer a facility to try single box, which can be tried during summer vacation month.

Event listings

Summer camps definitely are fun and educational at the same time and keep the kids engaged for good part of the day. Apart from summer camps, there are also many activities, specifically for kids, available for a couple of hours to weeks. For example, hobby workshops, story reading, nature watching, etc.. Established startups such as BookMyShow and few newcomers such as EventsHigh are great sources to scout such activities around your areas.

Toys rentals

The toy rental market in India is growing. A number of sharing economy startups are coming up with various ways to provide toys and accessories to the kids at a fraction of a cost. There are a number of offline and even online toy libraries such as ToysOnRent that work on subscription-based model. Just like a book library, you rent toys for a monthly charge. There is another more flexible model pioneered by startups such as RentSher, where you can rent toys, costumes, accessories, and even medical equipment for any time period. Depending on your requirement you can rent a single toy, or complete birthday party play area, or even set up entire carnivals, including bouncy castles, candy and popcorn stalls, balloon and tattoo artists, and more.

So if one does their research, plan ahead, and set aside some time, thanks to all these startups, summer vacation won’t be a daunting task but rather a source of great memories for you and your kids for years to come.

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)

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Authors
Abhijit Shaha
Abhijit Shaha, is the founder and President of Product and Technology of RentSher – a seed funded online rental marketplace. He's also a member of global collaborative consumption forum and like to talk about sharing economy, product management and design. He has more than a decade of experience in technology, strategy and product management gained in his tenures at Capgemini, John Deere and Philips.  

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