Camp and summer just go naturally together. But you put off finding a camp until now and suddenly realize a lot of the camp spots have been snatched up. Not to worry. We found four great camps your kid will absolutely will love. Best of all, they still have openings if you hurry.
Language learning doesn’t seem like learning when you are having fun. And that’s just how Spanish Horizons’ Spanish immersion summer camps work, with plenty of music, dance, experiments, games and arts and crafts to teach kids 3-6 Spanish in a fun, organic way.
The summer camps are perfect for kids learning Spanish as foreign language as well as those who are bilingual because the kids learn so much from each other, Director Liliana Cortez says.
This summer’s week-long camps, led by Spanish Horizons’ native Spanish speaking, nurturing staff, are 9 a.m.-noon Monday-Friday June 11-Aug. 24, and include both indoor and outdoor activities conducted 100 percent in Spanish. Each week, the camps focus on a different theme and adventure and concludes every Friday with a fun fiesta.
But Cortez says all of the fun is built around the staff’s passion to create a love for the language and lifelong learning as well as building a community.
Spanish Camp is $250 a week with a small staff to student ratio. Find Spanish Horizons in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood at 2836 N. Southport Ave. Call (773) 348-7686 to register. spanishhorizons.com
Not only will kids attending the Deerfield Golf Club & Learning Center junior golf camps this summer learn life skills along with the scoop on making a perfect putt, they’ll have lots of fun doing it.
Trena McDaniel, LPGA, director of Instruction and U.S. Kids Golf certified instructor, says she and her staff use game-based education to help kids grow and get better in the no-stress camp. Think of a huge game of tic-tac-toe on the putting green (to improve distance control and accuracy) and balloon tosses on a hot day (to work on grip).
And with a 4 to 1 camper to staff ratio, there’s plenty of attention paid to every golfer, whether they are just starting out or can already chip and putt.
“It’s just a lot of fun,” McDaniel says. “Plus, our program teaches young kids important life skills; that’s what golf is all about. Integrity, honesty, teamwork and how to communicate with others, those are a big part of the journey.”
Parents are their kids’ best teachers, but sometimes, it’s better to leave things to the experts. That’s the case when it comes teaching kids to ride a bike. Ben Hall, of Pedalheads, says he’s seen the rite of passage cause unnecessary conflict and stress between parents and kids.
Pedalheads’ Learn to Ride Program for kids 3-10 takes away that stress and brings kids together with the same goal: to learn to ride a bike. Not only do they shed their training wheels, they get well on their way to being ready for family bike rides, all while having a blast learning.
“Our focus is building kids’ confidence and their self-belief and getting them out being active,” Hall says.
As kids continue with the program, they’ll learn everything from fundamental skills to rules of the road. The camps successfully take newbies from training wheels to two wheels in an enclosed school yard. Other levels of the camp teach more advanced riders how to be safe on the road.
Full-day camp, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, is $469 or half-day camp is $229. Pedalheads offers four Chicago area locations this summer: Evanston, Lincoln Park, North Center and Norwood. pedalheads.com.
Summer is the perfect time to tap into kids’ excitement for learning and at Center for Talent Development’s summer Leapfrog program, students ages 4 through grade 4, will find plenty of fuel for their passions.
Leapfrog offers 70 different courses for kids to choose from, including math, language arts, science, technology, and engineering, meaning they can really dig into what interests them, says Leslie Morrison, Leapfrog program coordinator. In fact, it is one of only a few programs around that offers coding and robotics for pre-K students.
All of the programs are hands-on and collaborative. “This is a way for students to connect with others who are academically advanced and to take ownership for their own learning,” she says.
The camps draw families from around the country because the experience is unique for academically advanced students, she says. Many families return year after year.
“We hear from families that their students gain an added excitement for learning and new friends in these high-interest courses, whether it’s robotics, cryptography, or 3D Cell Biology,” Morrison says.
Options abound. Many families sign up for courses all four weeks or pick and choose from half-day courses. The Leapfrog program runs June 25-July 27 at locations in Chicago, Skokie, Lake Forest, Palatine and Naperville. Half-day courses are $345 for the first half-day course, and $310 for each additional half-day course, and full-day courses are $670. ctd.northwestern.edu/leapfrog.