Saturday, July 28, 2012
This past week, I had the pleasure of running a space camp for 18 8-11 year-old kids. It is the first time we're offering such a program, and I really wasn't sure how it would go, but it sounds like they had a lot of fun!
We partnered with the university recreation program, who offer a huge range of summer camps throughout July and August. I approached them last fall about developing a space camp program for them, and they jumped on the chance. They have loads of sports camps, but are always looking to add non-sports camps too.
So, the kids went on a solar system walk, made their own solar ovens and refracting telescopes, held meteorites, mined cookies, designed and built space landers, and completed a rover mission.
One thing I learned was that my expectations for what could be done in our time was too high. Usually, when I go to classrooms, I'm supposed to fill up the entire time with activities, slide shows, demos, etc.. In this case, there was a lot of time dedicated to snacks, bathroom breaks, and games to break up the day. Once I realized that, the rest of the days went much better.
I'll be doing it all over again in a few weeks, and I'm looking forward to it!