1.) Daily parent emails included detailed overviews of what students did at camp that day, any last-minute reminders for the next day, topics to talk about with their student, and photos of the day’s activities. We had a lot of very positive feedback from parents indicating that is was very valuable to know what their student was up to all day.2.) Providing explicit directions, instructions and expectations was completed through the pre-camp letter outlining what was going to happen at camp, logistical information, and what to expect from camp. 3.) Requesting feedback. We have always completed formal surveys with students and parents, but it is also valuable to speak directly with families at every opportunity. This was done at our parent afternoon when all projects were tested. Staff made every attempt to speak with and get feedback and impression from families on their impression of camp, how their students liked/didn’t like camp, would they come again, etc. This information in addition to emails sent by parents provided valuable information on the success of certain projects, activities and tours.
1.) RatioZAP EngineeringStudents were assigned a counselor that attended all activities and classes with them. Ratios were one counselor to five students. When participating in activities students also interacted with an instructor further lowering the ratio. This allowed for greater feedback and assistance with projects and interaction with individuals from the engineering field ZAP Chemistry had two instructors for the 24 4th grade participants. 2.) Pre-training & Familiarity with age group All counselors attend a training workshop to ensure that they are prepared to work with the students. Additionally counselors are selected with experience with this age group in mind.
1.) Hands-on: all activities include hands-on components so students can be involved in the building, designing, and testing of projects. This is fundamental to our learning goals!2.) Team-building activities: Utilization of the MSU High Ropes Course and informal classroom teambuilding activities promote cooperation, team work, etc.
1.) Examining solar cells2.) Using a solar furnace
1.) 10 second towers2.) High ropes
1.)High ropes2.) Campus tour
1.) Bridge building2.) Bridge testing
1.) Building solar chimney2.) testing solar chimney
ZAP Chemistry1.) Making silly putty2.) Pop-can engines