Middle-school students unplugged for the week and got in touch with the great outdoors during Nature Inventor’s Workshop, a day camp that combines STEAM — Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math — practices with activities like fishing, canoeing and making s’mores.
Open to sixth, seventh and eighth graders, the camp is held at the Nanjemoy Creek Environmental Center. It includes less traditional camp activities like making kites out of trash bags, building a simple motor craft out of bamboo, rubber bands, pencils and washers, knotting a survival bracelet made of paracord and indulging in molecular gastronomy which resulted in bacon fat snow, fruit caviar and exploding bananas.
“Nature Inventor’s Workshop has students using things in nature to create something,” said Jen Young, an environmental education assistant. During free time, the campers head outside to explore the forest or the ponds, catching frogs and turtles.
“I really like nature,” said Ada Donohue, a seventh grader at Milton M. Somers Middle School. “We all should learn how to help our environment and learn how to have fun … not just playing on a phone. Which is what I would be doing if I wasn’t here.”
This is the second year Eric Ghrist, a Theodore G. Davis Middle School seventh grader, attended summer camp in Nanjemoy. “I liked it and I like STEM, so, ‘Hey, why not?’” Ghrist said canoeing was one of his top activities during the week and he liked the new things he was introduced to. “Like making a kite,” he said. “I wouldn’t do that unless I was here.”
Charles County Public Schools provides 27,108 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.