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THAT CONCLUDES SESSION 1! 

The first two weeks of camp have truly been a special time, as campers and staff reunite for the first of many summers. We’re overjoyed to be back, and the fun is only getting started!

Before we move on to Session 2, we deserve to look back at the memories we’ve made at camp so far!

Welcome to our first end-of-session newsletter of the summer, where we’ll walk you through all the fun our campers had in the last two weeks! We’ll be covering the STEAM camps at all locations, and showing you what’s been happening under the ropes!

And who better to take you through the events of Session 1 than the people who curated and experienced camp themselves? Read on below to hear from our assistant directors, CIT’s, and campers as Session 1 unfolded!

Click the links below to find the recap for your camp location:
Richmond Hill Curling Club
Fletcher’s Fields
Richland Academy

Curling Club

Hey, I’m Norbert and I’m the program director here at the Curling Club! This my third year working at The STEAM Project, my first time as a program director. I was a volunteer in 2019, and a counsellor in 2020 and 2021! Before that, I was a camper here, so I know all about The STEAM Project and what it’s like to be here as a camper.

For Session 1 our theme was “Out of This World”, which contained an introduction to electricity and circuitry for our campers. 

With this theme, we tackled projects based around space and the sea– from exploring different planets, building helmets, rovers and rockets, learning about other cool vehicles, and more!

It was a crazy fun session and the campers got to learn a bunch of different skills throughout their time here. Every kid learned and was able to 3D print structures by the end of the session, and they were able to learn how to use different robots like the MBots and drones as well. For circuitry they learned how to make basic circuits with breadboards and used that to implement coding with an Arduino system. 

Campers also got to do a bunch of very fun simple projects like the fishing rod project, where they got to go deep sea fishing in a huge pool. The older kids specifically got to do more soldering and programming as well so that was fun. 

I think one of the favourite projects were the solar cars. Campers were able to build their own car, customize it, and watch it run solely on solar energy!

Camper – Aaryan (13 years old): 

“I love soldering! It’s really fun and it’s just a skill that I feel like will be very important to me later on.

We got to solder a fan and work with a circuit board to learn about circuits. We also learned how to use an electric saw in woodworking and how to design and 3D print stuff in Tinkercad (a 3d printing software) which was really cool.”

 

Camper – Matvey (12 years old):

“I’m in the Enrichment Program, and it’s really fun because we get to build robots here. The enrichment program is probably my favourite part of camp so far. 

Basically, we’ve been building these RC cars and tanks ourselves with pre-made parts. We soldered, assembled and we might also possibly build attachments for them– maybe even use sensors and things to make our robot better!”

I think the best part of camp was really seeing how kids make something fun out of everything. A great example is when the younger kids used their creativity to put all their circuits together to create one large one which was awesome!

Any project that allows them to be really creative makes the campers go crazy. The solar cars for example weren’t originally supposed to be customizable, but we found scraps and other things so the kids ended up decorating their cars anyway!

We had a professional scuba diver, Tyler, come into the Curling Club to talk to all campers. Tyler’s really great, he’s one of the co-owners of a company called Aqua Sub, based right here in Richmond Hill. 

Aqua Sub has a really cool scuba diving program that teaches people how to get into scuba diving and getting trained on using equipment. 

He also came in to talk about all the cool features of scuba diving and all his adventures—like how he’s swam with sharks. He’s done a lot of shark conservation programs, so he also brought real shark teeth to pass around!

From the CIT Program

CIT – Jayden (15 years old): 

I was a camper here in 2019, but this year it’s my first time as a CIT!

I learned a lot of leadership skills in the CIT Program, especially about how to talk to people and handle different age groups in different ways.

We did a lot of theory work our first week. Our CIT director Molly showed us a lot of videos, including TED Talks, and then she gave us some examples and put us in situations where we could apply them.

[On their Personal Project]:

I have ideas, so I started working on it a little bit. I’m thinking about building an RC plane

At the end of camp a few years ago I asked Jay [STEAM Project co-founder] if I could borrow some motors and parts to make a boat. Then, during my CIT interview Lorne asked me if I had thought about what my project would be, so that’s when I started thinking about making an amphibious boat (a boat that could travel on land and water). 

Finally, a few days into the program when we were designing things I pivoted to a plane because I thought that was more difficult to make and I wanted to challenge myself. I’m planning to build it from scratch and use an Arduino and Bluetooth to control it!

To future CIT’s: if you’re nervous about becoming a leader for younger campers, don’t be! Our instructors coach you through it and they give you a lot of guidance while making it interesting and fun. 

CIT – Tayma (14 years old)

This is my first year both being at camp and being a CIT! This program is really helpful when it comes to dealing with kids because we also learn about what to do in different scenarios and how to be a leader.

We learned a lot about different leadership styles and how to deal and interact with each kid. We have kids in all age groups, so we learned more psychological aspects and how to prepare activities that are suitable for each age and adjust them accordingly.

I really enjoyed planning the camp wide challenges and how we all get to plan our own mini activities throughout camp! I even created my own mini superhero scavenger hunt for Spirit Day!

 

[On their Personal Project]:

I’m really into psychology, so I’m going to be building a 3D Brain, and inside will be a circuit with LED’s that are going to light up certain aspects of the brain!

I’m doing this because I want to explain how different colours cause different psychological reactions, so I’m going to label different parts of the brain with different colours that activate them and explain that. 

To future CIT’s: Definitely pay attention to lessons. Not only are they really interesting, but they’re also really helpful when it comes to planning any kind of camp wide event or activity. 

Final Message From Norbert:

It’s been a great experience, it’s crazy how everything really coming together and the atmosphere’s great from start to finish! It’s always cheery and loud so it’s been so much fun and really great to see.

 

SESSION 1 HIGHLIGHTS – RHCC

Fletchers Fields

My name is Darya, and I’m the STEAM Camp Program Director at Fletchers Fields. It’s my first year working at The STEAM Project, and I’ve been working since May with all the other directors and instructors to plan the best summer ever!

The first week of our “Out of This World” session had a really big focus on space and under the sea! We had kids making astronaut helmets, circuits that mimicked the launching of rocket ship, 3D prints, coding and just a lot of fun stuff related to those themes.

In general, I think all the projects went amazing. The younger campers especially loved the astronaut helmets, it was a super big hit. I think they also really enjoyed learning how to code, which we were able to do through Scratch Jr. We also had a lot of kids soldering and circuit building for the first time. Our older kids actually got to solder themselves, which was a huge success. 

We focused on our final project in the last week. We worked a few activity blocks to create a solar system representing everyone at Fletchers, so each camper made their own planet! 

We’re also focused on the “Under the Sea” portion our second week. We had some deep-sea fishing where we have these tiny pools that the kids get to fish out of, and they also get to make these plastic bottle and duct tape boats as well.

Camper – Olivia (5 years old): 

“The bioluminescence [project] is always my favourite time because it’s just fun! I feel pretty happy and they’re [instructors and counsellors] always nice to me. I always have fun and play games with them.”

Camper – Kelly (5 years old): 

“The spider project was my favourite. We made a fake spider, we used pipe cleaners to bend and tie to make the legs and then we put a pompom in and attached a string to it so we could play with it.”

We love Spirit Days and they are lots of fun here. Our first spirit day last week may have been a bit daunting for some kids because they weren’t sure if they were supposed to dress up, but I think a lot of them who did dress up found it super rewarding! 

I think they really enjoyed the idea of being able to show their spirit through wearing and making costumes and matching with their counsellors and instructors. 

I actually witnessed a lot of kids make costumes throughout the day with whatever materials they could find. With “Alien Invasion Day” some kids put on some googly eyes, some kids were wearing green, space outfits, etc. so it was a lot of fun!

Then we had “Superhero Day” and you can tell the kids got a lot more comfortable with the idea of dressing up, and they’re not embarrassed or nervous to be the only one. There are some new superheroes so it’s interesting to see who kids consider to be a superhero. 

It was a lot of fun to see the kids come with their capes and masks– it was adorable!

We had professional athlete and motivational speaker, the Unstoppable Tracy Schmitt, come to Fletchers to speak to our campers! Tracy was amazing, she was born without limbs and defied expectations by exceeding in cycling, mountain climbing and more! Campers learned her story, the importance of inclusivity, and got to ask her questions about her life and the amazing experiences she’s had. 

Tracy really showed campers how to believe in themselves and that they can be unstoppable too.

Final Words From Darya:

Seeing kids every day at work is so rewarding. I don’t think people understand how lucky we are here to have little comedians around us all day long! Kids are so unapologetically themselves, and we have so much to learn from them. 

I think I’m just really grateful to be working around kids and Fletchers itself is such a good location and a great time overall. We take advantage of every ounce of space we have here to play sports outside and hangout inside after. 

SESSION 1 HIGHLIGHTS – FLETCHERS FIELDS

Richland Academy

Hi, I’m Anna. I’m the program director at Richland and it’s my first year working at The STEAM Project!

In Session 1, campers learned some woodworking and electrical skills. Both Sprockets and FreshKids had woodworking projects where they got to build wood rockets, and they practiced building simple circuits through “magic wands” and anglerfish circuits! 

Since this session is “Out of This World”, they also learnt about space and our planets—and used that knowledge to build a rotating solar system model!

Both groups also got an introduction to coding with Scratch Jr. which was awesome. 

It was really fun seeing all the projects that we planned in action and see that investment pay off through the kids’ learning. It was also really great seeing how much the kids know. A lot of the kids were really into space, for example, so it was really exciting to see how they went away learning about the different planets and the life cycle of a star. 

I think woodworking was a favourite activity for the kids, they got a lot of satisfaction from using the “big” tools and glue guns with some help and learn how to be safe while using them to create. 

The little kids also especially loved the galaxy art where they used chalk pastels to make pretty galaxy pictures and micro-jewels to trace together a constellation.

A lot of the kids dressed up as aliens on Spirit Day! Some people painted their face green, and some people came in wearing alien suits– so the kids were really hyped up about the aliens walking around! The flagpole was especially fun that day because our instructors had astro-helmets and were posing as astronauts in space countering space aliens who just wanted to be friends. 

Final Words From Anna:

Make sure your kids get enough sleep so your kids have enough energy throughout the day. Seeing their excitement from everything like flagpole, skits/projects and just the general energy they bring at camp is huge and we love it.

SESSION 1 HIGHLIGHTS – Richland Academy

***

*Responses have been edited for length, clarity and/or brevity*

This session has truly been out of this world! We’re sad it’s over, but that just means it’s also an opportunity for a new beginning!

We’ll be back soon with Session 2, “How Stuff Works”! 

The STEAM Project Family

Want to keep up with us in real-time? Make sure to follow us on social media for daily camp photos, reels, and more!

If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact us at 289-819-0178 or office@thesteamproject.ca.

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