This year, HWS will host the annual Kids College Summer Camp from Monday, June 28 through Friday, Aug. 6. This series allows children to have fun and stay sharp on their skills over the summer. Each themed week is loaded with fun activities, with academics interwoven throughout to achieve the camp’s main goal of maintaining or improving children’s reading and other academic skills during the summer months.
“Kids Camp is designed to make summer a fun, exciting time that kids will remember forever, while also providing them valuable knowledge and skills,” says Paula Foote ’07, one of the Kids College coordinators. “They’ll have the opportunity to do things at camp they can’t possibly do at home and they’ll travel to places that reinforce what’s being taught at camp and in the classrooms.” Foote graduated from William Smith with a B.A. in psychology and an education minor. She now teaches fourth grade at North Street School.
The curriculum and activities throughout the five weeks are presented by guest artists and presenters as well as a number of visiting faculty from Hobart and William Smith Colleges, including Christine deDenus, associate professor of chemistry and chair of the department Kristy Kenyon, assistant professor of biology; and John Vaughn professor of mathematics and computer science. Also presenting programming this year are Colleges’ staff Heidi Beach, writing colleagues coordinator and Sheila Myers, educational outreach coordinator, Finger Lakes Institute.
During the first week (and again the third), Science and Me, students will explore the wonders of science with deDenus and Kristen Kush ’12. Each day will have a different theme and will involve active engagement to relate scientific concepts to the real world. Students will experiment with a variety of sciences, including food, sports, detective and polymer. The final day will include fun activities from all areas of science.
The following week, Art Week, sees the exciting return of Jon George, a teacher at Geneva Middle School and artist with clever and inspirational ideas. Students will take a deeper look into the impressionist painters, such as VanGogh, Picasso and Monet. They will work on using color to express themselves in paintings and will spend some time on sculpture. Caroline Wenzel ’05, one of the founders of Kids College, will return to help George with Art Week and will run History Week. Wenzel graduated from William Smith with a B.A. in history and minor in education. She spent four years teaching at Canandaigua Academy and now teaches seventh grade social studies at Canandaigua Middle School.
Those who love animals won’t want to miss Zoology Week, from July 12 through 16. Working with HWS professors, veterinarians and farmers, children will become acquainted with all aspects of the animal kingdom. A number of hands-on experiences will fill the week, including studying a frog colony with Kenyon and seeing wildlife in its natural habitat with trips to the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge and to the Seneca Park Zoo.
On July 22, co-founder (at the age of 15) and now CEO of Silicon Solar Adam Farrell will come to camp as part of Science and Technology Week. Having designed a miniature solar home as a ninth-grade science project, Farrell’s interaction with campers will be an exciting look both at the technology of the future and where it can take one. Throughout the week, students will learn about black holes, constellations, computer games and more. They will visit an observatory and planetarium, shoot off rockets, build robots and spend an afternoon inventing something to be shown off at the invention convention. Campers will also have the opportunity to stay late one night to enjoy a swim, a pizza and a movie.
During local history week, campers will learn what New York State was like centuries ago. Wenzel will lead second to fourth-graders in learning about Native Americans – including their dances and games and how to build longhouses. Those in fifth to seventh grade will spend the week studying local history, as well as that of N.Y. Campers will learn about local figures and have the opportunity to visit the Rose Hill Mansion and Ganondagan New York State Native American Historic Site.
Camp will close August 2 through 6 with CSI/Crime Investigation week with a crime scene investigator who will lead students on a police station walk-through and help them solve a “crime” on campus. Focus will be on fingerprinting, tampering with evidence, sketching suspects, and the importance of remembering details. Younger campers will practice new skills while playing Clue, while older students will participate in a creative writing exercise to plan their own mystery.
Kids College and Kindercamp will join together to celebrate all they’ve learned and done on August 6. This will include the invention convention and display of art work, science experiments and journals, among other children’s work. Kinder campers will share desserts they make alongside Executive Chef of Dining Services Ben Gallinaro.
The camp runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. For more details and registration information, please contact the Office of Conferences and Events at (315) 781-3103 or visit the Kids College Web site.
The photo above was taken during the 2009 Kids College graduation.