Looking for some summer stimulation? Summer Spark offers weekly hands-on, problem-solving camps from June 8 through August 14, 2015 for rising 1st – 6th graders at O. Henry Middle School in central Austin. Visit www.summerspark.com to find out more and to register.
Each week at Summer Spark features a different challenge which provides the opportunity to boost the 3 Cs – creative problem solving, collaboration, and confidence. Whether designing a rollercoaster for a marble or building a zipline from recycled materials, campers apply creativity as they innovate, collaborate with peers in search of solutions, and gain confidence as they learn from set-backs. Summer Spark days are a careful balance between individual and group activity, and time for relaxation, reflection, and play.
With packed schedules, powerful media everywhere, and performance pressure on schools, we believe that a fundamental component of a strong foundation is missing in the lives of many children today. The ability to tackle a problem with no set solution – to think creatively and flexibly, to struggle, fail, and try again, to test, revise, and reiterate. At Summer Spark, we strive to fill this gap. We are all about physical experiments, purposeful tinkering, messy construction. Creativity Unplugged.
We understand that coordinating summer schedules can be overwhelming. We hope to make your life just a little easier by offering flexible registration and worry-free booking. You can sign up for one week and switch to another if your plans change – or cancel entirely – at no cost up until June 1st, the week before camp starts.
2015 challenges include:
- Stop the Plop: How do you protect a raw egg from cracking when dropped from various heights? What materials do you need? How does your design change if the egg has to be visible inside its container? This week, campers will design, build, and test containers to try and avoid the plop, or rather splatter, of a raw egg hitting a hard surface.
- Structural Integrity: How high can your tower go? If you could only use two materials to build it, what would they be? How about for a bridge? How much weight can it hold? This week, campers will take on a series of building challenges with limited resources and unlimited creativity.
- Invention Convention: Can you design and build a machine that will pop a balloon? Set off an alarm? Knock over a cup? How many steps can you build into your design? This week, campers will be presented with a series of invention challenges – or maybe come up with their own – that inspire them to persevere as they design, test, and tinker.
- Marble Rollercoasters: Using a variety of household materials, campers will transform trash into treasure this week as they design, build, and refine marble runs. As they master the basics, the challenge will increase. How long can you make it? Can the marble do a loop? Two? The challenges and solutions are as endless, as is the creative output.
Visit www.summerspark.com/2015-challenges to see complete list of challenges and dates.
Have a creative problem solver at home who would enjoy a week of confidence-building collaboration? We have free registration for a week at Summer Spark to give away! This prize has a value of $300. For your chance to win one week at Summer Spark for a child entering 1st through 6th grade, simply fill out the form below. One winner will be selected at random on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at noon and notified by email. Sweepstakes Official Rules. If you cannot see the entry form, please visit the original post to enter.
O. Henry Middle School
Corner of 10th Street and Exposition Boulevard