Camp Themes

Welcome to Nature Adventures Camp 2019

From the Director Team

Welcome to the South Shore Natural Science Center’s Nature Adventures Camp, a place where your child will explore and discover the wonders of the outdoors while instilling a sense of respect and appreciation for the natural world.

Summer is a time to enjoy the warm weather, hang out with friends and play outside.  At camp the possibilities are endless. Nature Adventures Camp provides a balance of structured and free play with environmental exploration, the use of scientific tools, and age-appropriate learning activities. These experiences  encourage children’s natural curiosity of the outdoors while building social and life skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, communication, teamwork, and self-confidence.

We seek to foster an appreciation for and love of nature by inviting campers to explore the world around them through hands-on, outdoor, experiential learning. By doing this, we hope to inspire your children to become environmentally responsible and conscientious citizens of tomorrow, to spark a lifelong love of learning, and to develop a deep and enduring connection with the natural world.

As you read this, the camp team is excited to be planning fun, creative and enriching hands-on nature-inspired STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) adventures for our campers and we hope your children join us!

–          Louise Beaudry, Director of Environmental Education & Camping,
–          Chris Lewis, Nature Adventures Camp Site Director,
–          Michelle Marquis, Nature Center Preschool Sr. Lead Teacher & Nature Adventures Camp Assistant Site Director,

2019 Camp Themes

Our exciting nature-based weekly themes emphasize fun, hands-on experiences for campers to discover the natural world around them through age-appropriate activities. Campers at each age level develop skills and knowledge which encourage confidence, cooperation, curiosity, and compassion for the natural world. Each week we feature a different camp wide theme.

Week 1: Nature Detectives(June 24 – June 28)

Hmm, it appears we have a mystery on our hands: animal tracks, scat, holes, bones, dens, tunnels, and feathers are scattered all over the Science Center grounds! Put on your detective hat, venture out on the trails, and study the clues left behind to identify the animals that are active at SSNSC!

Week 2: Muck & Slime Safari (*July 1-3)
*No Camp Thursday, July 4th & Friday, July 5th

Do you love ooey-gooey nature and science?  Explore the wonders of sticky mud, messy nature, and slimy experiments!  From the kitchen to the forest to the pond, we’ll have fun exploring and crafting chemistry concoctions!

Week 3: Digging for Dinosaurs (July 8-12)

We have discoveries to be made!  The world of dinosaurs will come to life through fossil hunts, mock digs, and engaging, hands-on activities.  We will explore the lives of dinosaurs and the evidence that scientists use to learn about these prehistoric creatures!

Week 4: Camo Camp (July 15-19)

Can you see me now?  Camouflage is useful and fun!  Be inspired by how plants and animals use the ability to blend into their surroundings for survival.  Discover the wide variety of camouflage adaptations and then design your own camouflage using natural materials.

Week 4: Adventure Skills (July 15-19) Grades 5-8

Could you survive in the wild?  What skills do you need to spend a night in the outdoors without the conveniences of home?  Join us as we learn about fire building, orienteering, basic first aid, knot tying, water collection techniques, and shelter creation.  Ready yourself for your next adventure 

Week 5:  Shark Week (July 22-26)
Explore the extraordinary world of sharks with hands-on activities and discovery.  Become a marine biologist to uncover the incredible adaptations that make sharks and their relatives unique and help them to survive in their ocean habitat.

Week 5: Vet School Camp – Marine Animals (July 22-26) Grades 5-8
Join educators from SSNSC and special guests to explore the world of veterinary science  with a focus on marine animals.  Highlights of the week will include a fish dissection, a visit from SALT the inflatable humpback whale and a field trip for a behind the scenes tour of a marine animal rehabilitation center!

Week 6: Animal Superpowers (July 29-August 2)

KA-POW!  Animals have amazing superpowers:  falcons fly at incredible speeds, fish breathe underwater,  squirrels “fly”, and owls can hunt even when it’s dark.  Learn about the special adaptations that give animals their superpowers to make them mighty and strong.

Week 6: Vet School Camp – Terrestrial Animals (July 29-August 2) Grades 5-8

Join educators from SSNSC to learn basic animal care skills and explore the world of veterinary science. Campers will interact with the Science Center’s live animals to learn about animal anatomy, gain important observational skills using scientific tools, and work collaboratively to solve veterinary mysteries. A special field trip will include a behind the scenes tour of a wildlife rehabilitation center.

Week 7: It’s Not Easy Being Green (August 6-9)

Join us as we jump into the world of recycling and engineering.  We will explore ways of recycling, reusing, and reducing while using our imaginations to create and build some new and exciting inventions.  During this week, we will also be participating in “Thingamajig”, our own invention convention.  On Thursday, August 8Campers Grades 1 and up will participate in an all-day off-site Thingamajig while younger campers participate in an on-site “Mini -majig”

Week 8: Galactic Blast-off (August 12-16)

Blast off into space! Come explore the solar system with us as we discover the mysteries of space! What causes an eclipse? Why is Pluto no longer a planet? Why is a year on Mercury only 88 days? We will uncover the answers to these and other space curiosities that have mystified humans for years.

Week 9: Things with Wings (August 19-23)

Take flight and explore the many plants (Yes – Plants!) and animals with wings!  Investigate how wings work, make flying crafts, and discover how high and how far your winged creature can go.

Week 10:  Camp Sampler (August 26-29) (New!)

We are excited to provide an additional end-of-summer camp option that offers flexibility for families.  Each day focuses on a different theme and will include hands-on fun and engaging activities.  Pick the days that work for you.

Monday – Rock, Rumble & Roll
Tuesday – A Bug’s Life
Wednesday – Extreme Marine
Thursday – Creatures of the Night

Week 10 Camp Sampler is only available to camper that have previously participated in 2019 Nature Adventures Camp.  Registration is only available in-house by contacting Kim Crespi, (sorry, on-line registration is not available.)

Leader-In-Training (New!)

We are excited to announce the new Leader-In-Training (LIT) program at Nature Adventures Camp for 2019! This is an excellent opportunity for youth ages 12 to 15 to develop leadership skills while becoming role models for young campers in a fun and engaging atmosphere. They will be supervised, coached, and evaluated by the Leadership-in-Training Coordinator.  LITs will build their confidence, independence, and self-esteem through problem solving, taking initiative, and being solutionaries. LITs will use these newly acquired skills to develop and lead camp activities alongside experienced counselors.
2 week sessions:
Session 1:  July 8 – 12, July 15 – 19
Session 2: July 22 – 26, July 29 – August 2
Session 3: August 5 – 9, August 12 – 16


Louise Beaudry, Director of Environmental Education & Camping, lbeaudry@ssymca.orgCWeek 4: Vet School Camp (July 16-20) Grades 5-8

Join educators from SSNSC to learn basic animal care skills and explore the world of veterinary science. Campers will interact with the Science Center’s reptiles and amphibians to learn about animal anatomy, gain important observational skills using tools such as microscopes and stethoscopes, help prepare food for the Science Center animals and work collaboratively to solve veterinary mysteries. Includes an off-site field trip.

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