Drop in at any time during the two hours to meet our staff and learn more about Connecticut’s premier summer camp.
Held in the Watkinson School gymnasium, 180 Bloomfield Avenue, Hartford
Third- and fourth-grade campers select a schedule consisting of two enrichment courses in the morning and three recreational activities in the afternoon. All three-session classes are listed below.
So you want to be a star? Join us onstage! You’ll develop your dramatic imagination and communication skills, and learn how to bring a play to life from script to stage by exploring characters, blocking scenes, and experimenting with acting techniques. You’ll even get to show off what you learned with a performance on the last day, in front of your very own audience of family and friends. Watch out, Broadway, here you come!
Want to write computer code, explore the world, or become a citizen scientist? Want to be a filmmaker and make stop motion animations? If so, join us at All About Apps, where we will use iPads to learn, explore, and create. Along the way, you will earn badges for writing lines of code, using game apps, creating holograms, and "hiking" rainforests, ancient ruins, and glaciers. We will even hold an Angry Birds tournament, projecting the game on screen, and then head outdoors to play a life-size version of the game!
Calling all fashion designers! Have you ever seen a really cool T-shirt and wanted to make one of your own? Great news—now you can! In this class, you’ll actually create a piece of wearable art by taking your own fun photos, importing your pictures into Photoshop, and finally printing your work and transferring your design onto your very own shirt. You’ll leave this class with several one-of-a-kind tees to take home!
Imagine … You’re in a room; a bomb in the center is slowly counting down to detonation. You’re shut in a lab with a zombie, trying to stay out of his decaying reach while looking for a way out. You’re sealed in a bank vault scrambling to exit before you run out of air. You will solve puzzles, search for clues, and break your way through locks to escape the scary situation and find freedom. Escape is the challenge!
There’s dough to be rolled, flour to be sprinkled, and cookies to be cut in this class devoted to all things baked. Learn to prepare bakery delights from around the world, using delectable sweets and fresh summer fruits to create such mouthwatering treats as cookies, crumbles, and crisps, while getting hands-on experience as a real baker in a real kitchen. Everyone will want your recipes!
Have you ever played Candy Land, watched Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, or visited an old-fashioned candy store? If so, you might have found yourself wishing you could make your own delectable treats. This class will take you to a whole new level of sweet temptations, guiding you through the basics of candy making. Learn to mold, marbleize, dip, drizzle, and paint your sweet concoctions. Mix, cook, and stretch some tasty taffy, too!
Do you dream about doing the backstroke in Willy Wonka’s chocolate river? This class will get you pretty close! Dig right in to chocolate of all sorts—milk, dark, white—while we learn how to cook and bake with it to create decadent chocolate treats. We’ll try a new recipe each day, making sure to satisfy every sweet tooth!
You love watching cartoons, but have you ever thought that you could actually make your own? Well, you can—and will—learn how to produce simple and not-so-simple computer animations, ranging from two-dimensional cartoon sequences to more involved three-dimensional masterpieces. Unleash your creative energies as you sample some of the hottest computer applications around!
Become a Summer Place chemist as you discover and experiment with basic science concepts. Explode pop rockets, launch a huge 50-foot solar balloon, get lost in a dry-ice cloud, create gooey slimes, send geysers of soda high into the sky, create “worms” and “snow” by mixing just the right liquids and powders, and even shake and make ice cream. This course is sure to excite the curiosity of all future scientists!
Are you interested in aviation? Does aerodynamics fascinate you? We’ll build and launch complex paper airplanes that loop, glide, and spin! We’ll send a slingshot helicopter into the sky, launch a hot-air balloon, send boomerangs flying, and design and build our own kites. We’ll also experiment with flying discs and even play a round of Frisbee Golf.
Calling all things itty and bitty! Let your imagination run wild as you create your tiny toy or teeny work of art. Try your hand at creating a tiny meal of pasta or pizza … build a mini house with a tiny mouse or a mini tea set with cute little scones. What itty bitty treasures will you build?
What do you want to be when you grow up? Explore different careers each day and discover your true calling in Job Jamboree! Do you want to be a scientist performing experiments, build huge towers, solve crimes, paint beautiful pieces of art, or cook delicious treats? Your future is waiting … Which job will be your favorite?
Climb, tug, roll, and swing your way like Tarzan through the challenges of the University’s ropes course. This is a challenging opportunity for you to test your own limits, gain self-confidence, and learn how to work cooperatively with others—all while having lots of fun! Play and learn through games and low and high-ropes activities. Solve problems blindfolded, work together for new “world records,” test your skill and determination, and cooperate for fun and the satisfaction of making it across, through, under, and over.
The Learning Zone is an enrichment course option offered to Summer Place campers who could benefit from small-group academic instruction in reading, math, written expression, and study skills. The class is offered to students entering grades one through nine. Groups meet in a relaxed, air-conditioned space that is highly conducive to learning.
The Summer Place learning-skills specialist focuses on an individual plan for each student, based on the needs of the child. The Learning Zone teacher will contact each parent prior to the summer to gather the information needed to develop an educational plan. The specialist will then teach, model, and reinforce the concepts and learning strategies necessary to achieve each student’s specific goals. At the end of each two-week session, parents will receive a written report that summarizes progress made and current achievement levels. This report may, in turn, be passed on to the student’s teachers in the fall.
Summer Place campers may enroll in a Learning Zone course in each session they attend. A nominal fee of $250 per Learning Zone course is charged for this individualized program. For additional information on this special option, please call the Summer Place office.
Calling all LEGO® fans! Come and compete in building challenges as we take an exciting LEGO journey. We’ll build people for our LEGO town and cars for them to drive in. Then we’ll construct an entire city, complete with a fire station, an airport, and even a market. At the end of the two-week adventure, you’ll have your own kit to mix up more LEGO madness at home. LEGO Land is waiting for you!
Music lovers wanted. Ever dream of being in a band or composing your own music? Now is the time to make music digitally in our Summer Place Garageband! Here, we’ll create and compose our own original music and songs using digital music computer programs and iPad apps. More interested in the recording studio? First, we’ll listen to some of our favorite hits to explore the making of music! Then it’s off to the music lab, where we will digitally create and produce songs that include different instruments, sounds, genres, and beats with music challenges along the way. At the end of the session, you will be able to download your songs from the Summer Place playlist.
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or an eager newbie, team up with your friends to create, craft, and explore in the exciting world of Minecraft. You’ll start by learning the basics of building structures, gathering resources, and crafting tools, allowing you to build your very own world. The only limit to your adventure is your imagination! Note: No Minecraft account needed.
Think you have what it takes to master “minute-to-win-it” challenges? You will race the clock to win out-of-the-box challenges and exciting daily prizes! Compete in games like Dizzy Mummy, where you have 60 seconds to wrap your team member in an entire roll of toilet paper—or how about Card Ninja, where you have one minute to get your playing cards to stick in watermelon halves. Join this class if you like to win challenges that test your speed, balance, and brain! Think you can crush these competitions and be the top team? Question is, are you in it to win it?
Grab your pawprint passports (which we’ll make in class) as we depart to visit different areas of the world and learn about the cool animals that live there. You’ll get an up-close and personal look at a bullfrog from Africa, a milksnake from South America, a bearded dragon from Australia, and a gecko from New Caledonia. Before departing for the day, your passports will be stamped with the animal you just learned about and the region you were introduced to. Collect all 10 stamps to share with your friends. A professional animal caretaker from The Children’s Museum will accompany you on your travels. All aboard!
In this “picture-perfect” course, you will be introduced to the basic elements of black-and-white photography. Using a 35mm single-lens camera (provided by Summer Place), you will shoot pictures on campus and then learn how to develop and enlarge them. Your prints will be mounted and matted for a professionally finished product.
Discover the importance of aerodynamics, mass, and friction as you build your very own race cars. You will learn the tricks of the trade and perfect your sawing, sanding, gluing, and precision-balancing skills while building a Pinewood Derby racer during the first week, and a rocket-powered CO2 dragster the second. Compete to find out if your speed racer will cross the finish line first!
We’ll be tie-dying like crazy and we’re not just talkin’ T-shirts! Dip and dye in bright, bold colors using sunbursts and wild patterns as you discover new ways to make your tie-dye project one of a kind. Incorporate your favorite pop song lyrics or inspirational quote into your piece by using fabric paint and markers. Try the accordion knot technique to make a wall hanging, a T-shirt, or a colorful pillowcase that your friends can sign at your next sleepover.
What if you could build, design and play with your very own custom-made house? The sky is the limit in this Tiny House building class, where you’ll be the architect and decide if you want a pool, elevator, basketball court or gardens. Create your own furniture and décor using salvaged objects. This session will spark problem solving, innovation and imagination! Come flex those creative muscles, within the four walls of your new Tiny House!
Calling all creative kids, toy lovers and game players! Play by your own rules in Toy Factory! Have fun competing in toy building challenges, designing your own board game, and sharing your creations with your friends and family. What toy will you take home?
Get ready for launch! Learn how to transform an ordinary two-liter soda bottle into an extraordinary water rocket that really flies. Add fins and a nose cone to create an aerodynamic design. Achieve maximum altitude on launch day and become a Summer Place junior astronaut.
What would you do if you were lost in the woods? This hands-on class will teach you to appreciate the challenge of survival without the comforts of home. Learn to build a weatherproof shelter; build, start, and maintain a fire (without actually starting one!); use a compass to find your way; and tie knots. You’ll also learn how not to get lost—and what to do if you do.
Come and enter the wizarding world of Harry Potter! Experience a Hogwarts education first hand. You will master magical potions, create your own wand for spell duels, compete in an intense Quidditch match, participate in the Tri Wizard Tournament and then sip butterbeer with friends. You’re in for a magical time!
Use your mind, muscle, and creativity as you turn wood into something wonderful! Design and build a variety of projects while learning how to use hammers, saws, sanders, drills, and other hand tools. You’ll gain new skills and confidence and are guaranteed to have lots of fun. Both beginning and experienced woodworkers are welcome!
Want to know a secret about Summer Place? Okay, but you have to keep it to yourself. This place is full of hidden treasures. Behind buildings, around the lake, under the trees—there is amazing stuff to find all over! How do we know? Because we hid it all, of course! And if you want to find all of these treasures, you’ll need to use teamwork and the latest GPS technology each day as you follow clues, answer trivia questions, discover new clues, take and upload pictures, and find the prizes at the end—where X marks the spot!
Sports and recreational activities—along with arrival and dismissal—will take place at Watkinson School, located adjacent to the University. Watkinson offers Summer Place a modern sports center, expansive playing fields, fitness room, dance studio, and state-of-the-art amphitheater.