Our annual event is just called “Science Camp” and aims to rise the youngsters’ interest in Science / STEM. We want to show the participants that “the boring” school topics like physics or math are quiet interesting when you have a real research question, motivated staff and an engaging environment.
These are the topics from this year: Renewable Energy, Human Body, Invasive Plants and Water as elixir. Every year within the online-registration we suggest different topics and the students can choose between them.
When the camp starts there are usually four groups with different topics and 15 students investigating on it.
An example of a program
A participant of our one week Science Camps usually take the following steps for example:
During the morning of the first day the student arrives at the venue. We are staying in a hostel and do the main research and have the accommodation in that building and around it. In Halle(Saale) the hostel was usually the Villa Jühling which is a former factory owner house with a big property and much nature around it. After the registration we have all together lunch and welcome all the participants together. After the lunchbreak and after the participants have completed our survey they start with the four different workshop groups. For example if a participant chose the topic “Human Body” then this group will start with a brain storming about the human Body (bones, diseases, bodies....), an overview about the activities for the week and maybe some “get to know each other” game. Afterwards they start with their first experiment or have their first field trip or lecture by an extern expert. In the evening there will be dinner time for all together and afterwards some leisure time activity like camp fire, volleyball or a walk through the woods.
The next days go the same as the afternoon just described. The students have experiments, fieldtrips and lectures but all very open and with free choices of having a break. They can work together in groups as they want and are encouraged to rise up with own research questions or ideas for experiments.
The later the week goes the more work will done for the final presentation. On the last day all groups will prepare the things they did in the week. They can present it via talks, active experimenting, narrations, videos, games or anything else. The way of presenting is again open but everybody has to present something. They usually are very creative and proud of the things they want to share.
Afterwards we make a big group picture, having the post-surveys, a fairwell-lunch and say “bye bye and until the next year!”
We are targeting students in the age 14 – 18 and want to have a balances gender mix. Usually the gender mix goes itself without any adjustment from us. We more have to adjust the age groups since many parents want to have their 12 or 13 year old child within our camp. The students come from everywhere in Germany but with a dominance of students from Halle(Saale) and the surrounded area. 2015 we did an international Science Camp in English with 15 students from Turkey, three Macedonian students and 27 German students. This year we are doing an Special international Science Camp with 20 german students, 20 turkish students and 14 students from families who had fled. It will be multikulti!
This blog allows our pariticpants to share their activities, experiences and anything else.
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Your Science Camp Team