Summer science and engineering camps in Cobb County

March 23, 2015 Leave a comment

Wheeler Magnet School in Marietta will host three summer camps for elementary- and middle-school students interested in science and technology.

Science Spectrum Camp will be held June 1-5, 2015. The camp is open to rising 7th-, 8th- and 9th-grade students, and will allow exploration in such areas as robotics, chemistry, electronics and drafting.

Camp GAMES, June 22-26, is for girls entering 4th, 5th and 6th grades. It, too, will include a range of science and engineering topics.

This year, Wheeler has added a third camp, STEM Explorers, also June 22-26, for rising 4th, 5th and 6th grade boys. This is the boys’ counterpart to Camp GAMES.

Wheeler Magnet is a science, technology and math magnet program housed at Wheeler High School.

Categories: Summer programs

Urge our senators to support gifted research

March 20, 2015 Leave a comment

Would you give ten minutes to support gifted education?

Here’s how: E-mail our U.S. senators in support of continued funding for the Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Act.

Javits Act funding supports research into how gifted students learn, and how we can improve teaching methods.

Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania) have written a letter to the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor-HHS-Education, asking that the 2016 budget continue to fund the Javits Act.

Showing support for Javits funding is crucial, because previous budgets have cut or eliminated it. Although Javits funding was as high as $11 million a year in the early 2000s, it dropped to $7.5 million per year later that decade, and was cut out entirely for the years 2010-2013. In 2014, Congress allocated $5 million to Javits, and in the 2015 budget, thanks to the leadership of Senator Barbara Mikulski of Maryland, gifted research was funded at $10 million.

Don’t let Javits funding get slashed or eliminated again in the next budget.

Your letter to our senators can be short and simple. My suggestion:

  1. Open with the call to action: to sign the Grassley-Casey letter in support of Javits funding.
  2. State your connection to gifted education. For example, that you have a gifted child, or you teach gifted children.
  3. Voice your support for research to ensure that gifted children are well served by our schools.
  4. Restate the call to action.

Send an e-mail to U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson

Send an e-mail to U.S. Senator David Perdue

We need to take action on this by March 26, 2015.

Gifted kids are a minority. They need our advocacy.

Categories: Advocacy and policy

Digital art classes in northeast Atlanta

March 20, 2015 Leave a comment

startcodeSTART:CODE is adding digital art and design classes for kids and teens, beginning in April.

Students will learn about composition, layout and color theory, working on tablet-based digital design software. Classes will be taught by a graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).

START:CODE also is accepting registration for its spring classes in coding and game design, as well as for summer camps.

Public speaking practice for kids and teens

March 19, 2015 Leave a comment

Dogwood Toastmasters is offering a public speaking program this spring to help kids ages 10 to 17 get comfortable presenting their ideas in front of an audience.

The Youth Leadership Program will be held on Saturday mornings from April 18 to June 20, 2015, in northeast Atlanta. The registration deadline for this free class is April 4.


Categories: Enrichment

Atlanta Science Festival starts Saturday

March 18, 2015 Leave a comment

PrintThings are about to get real science-y around this town.

The second annual Atlanta Science Festival kicks off this Saturday, March 21, offering a solid week of science-related activities on lots of science topics.

You’ll find the usual suspects of STEM: model rocketry, robotics and forensics, just to name a few. But when’s the last time you had the chance to learn the science of table tennis, or squishy physics (food science)?

The week culminates in the Exploration Expo, a massive free event on Saturday, March 28, at Centennial Olympic Park. Dozens of companies and schools will host hands-on activities geared toward kids and families.

Categories: Enrichment

MODA offers summer camps on the science of design

March 9, 2015 Leave a comment

campMODAThe Museum of Design Atlanta celebrates good design as a marriage of artistry and functionality. Kids in the museum’s campMODA summer camps will experiment with their own design to see how well they can combine ingenuity and engineering.

Topics this summer include LEGO robotics, Minecraft-based design, gadgets and devices, and electronic circuitry. Most camps are for children ages 8 to 12, although children as young as 6 may attend the LEGO robotics camp. MODA offers a separate Design Academy camp for middle-schoolers.

All camps last one week. Some are full-day, others only half-days. Camps are held at the MODA Midtown campus, Georgia Tech, or the Lovett School.

Categories: Summer programs

AICL: An exceptional camp for exceptional kids

February 25, 2015 Leave a comment

Appalachian InstituteJust about everything I post on is local to the Atlanta area.

The one exception I make is the Appalachian Institute for Creative Learning, held for two weeks each summer on the campus of Warren Wilson College, just outside Asheville, North Carolina.

For years, I had been intrigued by AICL with its wide range of courses. Where many programs billing themselves as gifted camps are science and technology heavy, AICL offers classes in music, magic, philosophy, and Dungeons & Dragons, just to name a few of the dozens of courses for 2015.

Last summer, my kids went to AICL and loved it. And I loved it, too, because I’ve never been anywhere where children’s creativity and individuality were so honored.

Let’s face it: Gifted kids can be unusual and quirky. Too often in life, they are embarrassed by their differences. At AICL, their quirks aren’t ridiculed. They’re celebrated. AICL is a safe place where exceptional children can meet other kids like them — kids who think it’s cool to learn about medieval warfare, form a marching band, create a documentary, or build a house out of cardboard.

AICL is open to children ages 8 to 17, with day camp or residential options. Children need not be gifted identified by their school to attend. As the camp’s web site puts it, “[W]e call our campers motivated learners, figuring anyone who shows up to take biology, math, or art in July is motivated.”


Categories: Summer programs

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