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You Visit Tour. Webb Lion Fountain. June 1 2017. Photo David B. Hollingsworth

Big Blue and VMASC Camps Offer Diverse List of Summer Activities

By Noell Saunders

Old Dominion University's Department of Recreation and Wellness is accepting registrations for week-long Big Blue Summer Camps through August 8.

The camps are accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA). All ACA camps are designed to help boys and girls (ages 6-14) develop friendship skills, independence, teamwork, family citizenship, competence, interest exploration, responsibility, affinity for nature and confidence in problem solving outside a classroom setting.

ODU's camps are designed around eight weekly themes. In addition to each week's theme, campers participate in arts and crafts, sports, rock climbing, and field trips.

The Big Blue Summer Camp prides itself on providing children with highly motivated and enthusiastic staff who mentor child campers. Candidates must have qualifications that meet and often exceed licensing guidelines. Staff also must adhere to ACA's camper-to-counselor ratios to ensure appropriate supervision is maintained throughout the duration of the program.

ODU's Big Blue Camp is divided into four categories: Day, teen, girl power and young writers. This year's theme weeks include:

Day Camps:

  • Chesapeake Bay, Beaches & Critters, June 18-22
    This camp will feature programs and activities from ODU's Center for Coastal Physical Oceanography. Campers will explore the ecology of the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed. They will engage in hands-on activities that show how the organisms help the Bay and how they contribute to conservation in Hampton Roads' local marine environment. Older campers (ages 10-12) will participate in a cruise on the Old Dominion University research vessel, the R/VFay Slover. Younger campers (ages 6-9) will visit the Learning Barge to learn about the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Planets & Stars, July 9-13
    Look to the sky - what can you see? Even without a telescope, you can see a lot more than you might think. In this camp, campers will learn about planets, stars and moons at the ODU Pretlow Planetarium. They will also participate in a Moon dance and learn about gravity while creating their own model of planets moving in the solar system.
  • Lego Camp, Aug. 13-17
    Campers (ages 6-9) will use STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) principles to build engineer-designed projects or create their own unique designs.
  • Engineering Camp, Aug. 13-17
    Engineers are creative problem solvers, helping to build a better world. Campers (ages 10-12) will explore civil, electrical, mechanical, and modeling and simulation engineering. They will engage in hands-on activities related to the engineering disciplines led by faculty and students from ODU's Batten College of Engineering and Technology.

Teen Camps:

  • Outdoor Adventure Trip Camp, June 25-26 or June 28-29 (please select only one date)
    This camp is designed specifically for teens who want to get out and explore the world around them. Campers will learn how to set up a camp, build a campfire, paddle a kayak or stand up paddleboard, and rock climb at the ODU rock climbing wall at the Student Recreation Center.
  • Teen Space Camp, July 9-13
    CubeSats are a class of pico-satellites that have emerged over the past decade as a cost-effective alternative to traditional large satellites. They provide space experimentation capabilities to universities and other types of enterprises. Campers will work with faculty and staff from ODU's CubeSat team to build a CubeSat model.
  • Leadership Camp, July 23-27
    Campers will work with two nationally certified facilitators on the Student Leadership Challenge. They will learn how to mobilize in order to be productive in organizations.

Girl Power Camps:

  • Believe In Yourself Week, June 25-29
    Campers will focus on developing a lifestyle aimed at success through mind, body and soul.
  • I'm Worth It Week, July 16-20
    Campers will focus on issues that girls face growing up and identify lifelong resources that will assist in overcoming obstacles.
  • I Can Do Anything Week, Aug. 6-10
    Young girl campers will focus on empowerment and building positive self-esteem.

Young Writer's Camps:

  • Space Camp, July 9-13
    Campers will use technology to create comics out of photos and images, and then write an exciting narrative to complete a science fiction adventure.
  • Disney/Pixar Camp, July 16-20
    Campers will use digital tools to design, write and produce an animated short film. The young filmmakers will become the critics and peer evaluate the films during an end of week film festival.
  • Pirate Camp, July 23-27
    A group of campers will create a Pecha Kucha-styled PowerPoint presentation, in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each. Black Beard, Long John Silver and other infamous scoundrels of the high seas will be the stars of this presentation. Campers' projects may be presented at a community Pecha Kucha event in Hampton Roads.
  • Steam Punk Camp, July 30-Aug. 3
    Campers will return to the days of Tesla, clockworks, airships and steam locomotives. They will combine scientific fiction and fantasy, imaging Victorian era characters and setting to create narratives.
  • STEM/Lego Camp, Aug.13-17
    Young writers will wrap their hands around Lego characters and transform projects into narratives. Finished projects will be showcased at the end of camp celebratory event.

For other camp selections and registration information, visit the Big Blue Camp website or call 757-683-3384.

Old Dominion University's Virginia Modeling, Analysis and Simulation Center (VMASC) Summer Camps

Old Dominion University's Virginia Modeling, Analysis and Simulation Center offers camps ranging from robotics to game development to 3D modeling in an effort to enhance learning and a life-long interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields.

Each of the summer camp opportunities is facilitated by University faculty members and researchers, are geared towards fostering engineering and design talents, providing hands-on demonstrations and leading innovative projects within an environment that promotes teamwork.

This year's VMASC Camp options include:

  • Introduction to Robotics, June 25-29;
  • 3D Modeling, June 25-29;
  • 3D Modeling for 3D Printing, July 9-13;
  • Unity Game Development, July 23-27;
  • Advanced Robotics, Aug. 6-10 and;
  • 3D Sculpting, Aug. 6-10

For more information or to register, visit the VMASC Summer Camp website.

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