Maker’s Camp will focus on STEM to fight ‘summer slide’

Oil City Library will fight the “summer slide” with a week-long Maker’s Camp starting Monday.

The summer slide is the tendency for students to lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous school year.

The camp will not only combat the slide, but also hopes to pique the interest of students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) subjects.

The camp will feature a different daily activity in science and engineering fields, and is a part of the Google Maker’s Program.

Many of the week’s activities will be run by Laura Jones, founder and director of Girls Excelling in Math and Science Club.

“We want to teach kids how things work,” said Jones. “We want to provide more exposure for kids to these types of projects.”

The week will include activities that will teach kids basics in program coding, circuit connections and motorized devices. Campers will have the opportunity to build circuits and create.

Wednesday’s activity, called Makey-Makey, will allow students to learn how to make circuits that can control various items.

“The earlier kids start with science and technology the better adapted they are,” said Dan Flaherty, director of the library.

The accepted age groups will vary slightly day to day based on the planned activity. This is to make sure the prime age group is utilizing the projects best for them, said Flaherty.

It will be a great week full of exciting projects, said Jones.

“We want kids to learn in a comfortable environment,” said Flaherty.

Sign-ups are still available for the free camp. Space is limited to the first 15 children that sign up for each activity.

“Kids can sign up for one day, or the whole week of activities,” said Jones.

More information and sign-ups can be found by calling (814) 678-3072.

Here is the schedule for the week:

Monday, Aug. 8 -Little Bits (ages 8-16) – circuit connection

Tuesday, Aug. 9 – Paper Engineering (ages 10-16) – DIY paper construction

Wednesday, Aug. 10 – Makey-Makey (ages 10-16) – USB Connected controlled machines

Thursday, Aug. 11 – LEGO Engineering (ages 8-12) – Lego construction

Friday, Aug. 12 – Computer Programming w/ BitsBox (ages 10-16) – software programming.