Looking for a Champaign-Urbana area summer camp that challenges your kids? Do you wonder if they can have fun AND learn during the hot summer sun? Of course, they can — you live in a college town! There are plenty of opportunities for your school-aged children to do crafts and get dirty, all while stopping their brains from atrophying from disuse.
Check out our HUGE Champaign-Urbana Area Summer Camp Guide for a fuller list of camps. But if it’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) or STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place.
Here’s a sampling of the STEAM-themed camps found right here in Champaign-Urbana this summer:
Unmask your child’s creativity this summer in the all-new Camp Invention® program, Supercharged, where children transform their wild imaginations into epic creations. Campers in grades K-6 will code robots and use collaboration and creative problem solving during hands-on, STEM activities. Click here or call to register. Use promo code INNOVATE25L to save $25 (March 22) or PLAY15LISTING to save $15 (May 10).
Dates: June 17-21, 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Parent Comment: “From the first day of camp our daughter was so excited about Camp Invention. We picked her up and she couldn’t wait to tell us about her first day. Her exact words were ‘this was the best day of my life.’ She loved getting to create and come up with ideas with her peers.”
Ages Served: K-6
Location: Booker T. Washington STEM Academy, 606 E Grove St., Champaign
Through these weeklong enrichment camps, students will have the opportunity to explore themes in Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math. Students will immerse themselves in units of study that foster creativity and discovery-based learning. The Petta, Zetta, and Yotta camps serve students entering first through third grade. In the mornings, campers will spend the week immersed in hands-on and inquiry based programs in our STEAM activities and Makers Lab. Then, in the afternoon they enjoy swimming trips, outdoor activities, or going on field experiences related to the theme being explored. These camps meet for nine weeks during the summer.
Dates: June 3-7, June 10-14, June 17-21, June 24-28, July 8-12, July 15-19, July 22-26, July 29-Aug. 2, Aug. 5-9
Parent Comment: “I have watched my son grow exponentially since his experience at STEAM began. I admire the creativity that his teachers provide as they inspire our son through various science, cultural, mathematical, and artistic projects. His creativity shines and is evident through his actions at home. His interactions and collaboration with other students allow him to grow socially and emotionally. I attribute a lot of his academic abilities and success to our involvement and his interactions and learning environment at STEAM.”
Ages Served: Students entering grades 1, 2, or 3 in 2019-2020
Location: 2521 Galen Dr., Champaign
Through these weeklong enrichment camps, students have the opportunity to explore themes in Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math. Participants will immerse themselves in units of study that foster creativity and discovery-based learning. Students entering fourth through sixth grade will participate in an advanced STEAM program that will include comprehensive experiments, opportunities to meet and work with experts in the field of study, and the creation of unique products to take home at the end of the week. These Tera camps meet for three weeks in June.
Dates: June 3-7 Treasure Hunters, June 10-14 Beyond Old McDonald, June 17-21 Turbo Tech 2
Parent Comment: “I am the parent of an 11-year-old boy that has a wonderful imagination. We have been so grateful for the STEAM Studio program that embraces this imagination and puts it into action! As we pick up our son after STEAM we always ask how his day was and what was his favorite part of the day and more often than not it was the time he spent in STEAM studio. The teachers keep the kids engaged and having fun while learning skills that will help advance them in many aspects of life. I endorse this program wholeheartedly and we are thankful a terrific and safe learning environment like this exists.”
Ages Served: Students entering grades 4, 5, or 6 in 2019-2020
Location: 2521 Galen Dr., Champaign
Classes are available in various types of dance and art, taught by experienced teachers and professional artists. There are beautiful landscaped grounds for outdoor activities.
Dates: June 10-Aug. 2. No activities on July 4.
Mondays through Fridays, full days: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., half days: 9 a.m. to noon or 1-4 p.m.
Early drop-off: 8 a.m. and late pick-up: 5:30 p.m.
Parent Comment: “My daughter loved UFA’s summer camps! Luciana and her staff provide a nurturing environment for the campers. I also appreciated the flexibility to add late pick-ups when needed.” — Christine des Garennes, Urbana,
Ages Served: 6 to 12
Location: 2860 S. Philo Road, Suites H and I, Urbana
Parkland College offers a number of exciting camps to fill your summer days! The best summer ever awaits kids, ages, 8-13, at College for Kids (CFK). This popular two-week, half day sessions, cover a variety of subjects, including robotics, technology, visual and performing arts, math, and science. Parkland College also offers numerous exciting summer camps for youth, ages 10-18, including Girls QUEST Stem Camp, CSI, First Gig Rock and Roll, Drone Camp, Machining and Welding, Land Surveying, Automotive, Collision Repair, and Motorsport. Students will learn something new and explore interests in hands on, interactive camps. Small classes are designed to challenge while having lots of fun and all camps taught by professional educators. To register, click here and search by category Youth and College for Kids.
July 8-18, Monday – Thursday, 12:45-2:45 p.m. and/or 3-5 p.m.
Girls QUEST Camp, Ages 12-15: July 22-25, Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
First Gig, Ages 10-17: June 10-14, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Parkland CSI Experience, Ages 14-17, June 17-27, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Drone Camp, Ages 15-18, June 24-27, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-noon
Land Surveying and Mapping with Technology, Ages 14-18: June 10-13, Monday – Thursday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Automotive Camp, Ages 13-15: June 10-13, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Automotive Camp, Ages 16-18: June 17-20, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Motorsport Camp, Ages 16-18: June 24-27, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Collision Repair Camp, Ages, 14-18, June 24-27, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-noon
Machining and Welding – Industrial Technology Camp, Ages 13-18: June 10-20, July 8-18 and July 22-Aug. 1, Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Uni High Summer Enrichment Camp offers a wide variety of classes taught by school faculty and students that are engaging to all campers! With courses ranging from creative writing to acting to aerospace engineering and even courses with field trips around campus, there is something for everyone! University Laboratory High School supports diversity and welcomes students from all backgrounds and ethnicities, including those from populations typically underrepresented at the university/college level.
Dates: June 3rd-7th and June 10th-14th, 2019 (9 a.m. to 3 p.m.). Campers can attend one or both weeks.
Parent Comment: Uni Summer Camp is a fantastic way for Central Illinois students and parents to learn if University Laboratory High School is a public high school option for them. The summer camp for students entering grades 5, 6, and 7 offers a great introduction to the warm, creative, diverse, fun and academically rigorous culture of Uni. If your child is bright, self-directed, self-motivated, insatiably curious about everything and enjoys being around other kids who are also, you should seriously consider checking out the summer camp. Our African American family was introduced to Uni when our son attended the camp for rising 5th graders, and he attended camp every summer until he was accepted and began attending as a student in 8th grade. Our son has always flourished in settings of academic rigor, first the Champaign Pubic Schools elementary gifted program, then in the honors curriculum in middle school. The Uni camp offers a mix of curriculum from the creative arts to the scientific, from the mathematical to the literary. Staffed with Uni faculty and upper-class students, you truly get a sense of the character and vibe of school’s academic and social environment. Don’t hesitate to look because you don’t know – check it out! CloLeeta A. Simpson
Ages Served: Rising 5-7th graders
Location: 1212 W Springfield Ave., Urbana