The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


June 7, 2014

In session | Summer camps offer variety of themed lessons

Day camps featuring outdoor activities, science, art, theater, music and more will enable children to learn while having fun this summer.

For those students seeking a more traditional classroom setting, Pitt-Johnstown has partnered with The Learning Lamp to offer its 2014 Learning, Enrichment and Recreation Network (LEARN) Camp.

The program will be offered from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 14-18.

Necessary partnership

Brittni McKolosky, Learning Lamp’s coordinator for the LEARN program, said the partnership was necessary to keep the summer sessions viable.

Formerly operated by Pitt-Johnstown, The Learning Lamp has stepped up to offer the popular summer camp activities at the university.

The program is available for students entering grades 3 through 8, and features a full week of classes.

Campers will take part in five different themed lessons each day with a break for lunch.

Students will use select art materials, collect samples of microscopic pond life, examine how special effects and film techniques transform the written word, use technology to craft a commercial with enhanced sound and video and enjoy the outdoors as a piece on a life-size board game.

College environment

Students also will get the chance to experience a college environment.

“Each student will enjoy five rotating classes each day taught by a certified staff,” said Mc- Kolosky.

“Each class has its own theme and offers a nice variety of summer fun.”

The classes cover art, biology, English, computer science and a physical component.

Attendees will spend each day engaged in a variety of classes that challenge their creativity, put their scientific prowess to the test, improve their use of technology and exercise their bodies and imaginations.

The classes will feature Art in Motion, which will have students use motion as inspiration to create art projects.

Wild, Wonderful Western Pennsylvania will demonstrate how interesting discoveries can be made in backyards.

From Page to Screen will have students begin with a popular book and end with a movie. They will examine film techniques and learn how they can enhance the written word.

Getting fit

On a more physical side, Ready, Set, Go will help participants get fit with a variety of outdoor games and activities that are fun and challenging.

Ad Age will allow the campers to use the latest technology to craft a commercial of their own.

All registrations and payments will also be processed by The Learning Lamp.

“This program is open to any and all students,” McKolosky said.

“We have a limited amount of space and we are looking for about 100 participants.”

McKolosky said depending on the reservations, organizers will try to bunch age groups together.

She said one of the advantages of such a program is offering youngsters the opportunity to experience a university environment.

‘Sharp minds’

“It also keeps the mind sharp during the summer months,” McKolosky said.

“To cap things off, the students will participate in a graduation ceremony in the university’s Whalley Chapel.”

Registration cost is $149 on or before Friday. After that day, the cost is $179. The fee includes daily lunch, all activities, supplies, a souvenir T-shirt and the graduation ceremony.

Seating is limited and registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Information: The Learning Lamp, 262-0732, or visit

St. Francis University

Only a limited number of summer sessions will be conducted at St. Francis University in Loretto.

Personnel changes made it difficult to provide a full schedule for the 2014 summer session, but organizers anticipate resumption of an expanded program next year.

The university has partnered with the Girl Scouts of Western Pennsylvania to offer two STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) camps for area girls.

The sessions will be staffed by representatives from the Girl Scouts and university undergraduate students, said Melissa Greiner, St. Francis’ program coordinator.

The first session, STEM Fun, is for girls in grades kindergarten through grade 3.

The program will be held from 9 a.m. to noon June 16-20.

Activities will include a Neat Numbers math program, Girl Scout Science, where the girls will work on badge-related science experiments, and a nature day, where they will take a campus hike and participate in a scavenger hunt.

For girls currently in grades 4 through 6, STEM Exploration will be offered from 9 a.m. to noon June 23-27.

Activities will include the Marvels of Math program, a STEM Sampler program, and a nature day with a campus hike and scavenger hunt.

“The program is open to anyone and girls do not have to be Girl Scouts to participate,” Greiner     said.

Registered Girl Scouts will be eligible to receive the patches for their activities (fee included in camp registration).

The cost is $50 for current registered Girl Scouts and $60 for nonregistered Girl Scouts.

“All classes will be held in the new outreach classroom located in the university’s science center,” Greiner said.

Space is limited and early registration is recommended.

“We are limited to about 25 girls for each session, but space is available,” Greiner said.

Information: 472-3878.

Tom Lavis covers Features for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on LavisTD.

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