/ ExploreHope Academic Outreach

Science Camps

Summer Science Camps began in 1997 with Tod Gugino’s dream of sharing the love for science. Today, ExploreHope provides over 50 fun-filled educational camps for grades K–12.

2021 Schedule

  Morning
(Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–Noon)
Afternoon
(Monday–Thursday, 1–4:30 p.m.)
June 14–18
  • Tykes Lego (K–2)
  • EV3 Lego Mindstorms Basic (3–5)
  • Crazy Chemistry (6–8)
  • Joyous Music (10–12) Full day camp
  • Nursing, Health Professions & Human Performance (9–12) Full day camp
  • Crazy Chemistry (K–2)
  • Exploring Ecosystems (3–6)
  • Movie Making 2.0 (6–9)
  • Joyous Music (10–12) Full day camp
  • Nursing, Health Professions & Human Performance (9–12) Full day camp

June 21–25
  • Super Science Sampler (K–2)
  • Science of Art (3–5)
  • Roller Coaster Science (3–5)
  • Ukulele I (2–8)  
  • Classic Cartooning (2–10)
  • Dive Deeper into Dissection (7–10)
  • Art in Nature (K–2)
  • The Science of Harry Potter (3–5)
  • Websites & Animations (6–9)
  • Neuroscience (8–12) 
  • Comics, Manga & Graphic Novels (4–12)
June 28–July 2
  • Prehistoric Planet (K–2)
  • Crazy Chemistry (3–5)
  • EV3 Lego Mindstorms Intermediate (4–8)
  • Python and Raspberry Pi (8–12)
  • Tinker Engineers (K–2)
  • Science of Star Wars (3–5)
  • Taking Command of Circuits (6–9)
  • Inventing in 3D (6–12)
July 12–16
  • Cool Critters and Crawlies (K–2)
  • Art in Nature (K–2) Virtual camp
  • Science of Star Wars (3–5)
  • Wonders of the Watershed (6–8)
  • EV3 Mindstorms — Challenge (7–12)
  • Tinker Engineers (K–2)
  • Dive into Dissection (3–5)
  • Videogame Making with Scratch (3–5)
  • Inventing in 3D (6–12)
July 19–23
  • Doing Science with Disney (K–2)
  • Art 2D/3D (3–5)
  • Websites & Animation (6-9) Virtual camp
  • Research Experience (10–12) Full day camp
  • Roots of America Order (11-12) Full day camp
  • Hammer Time (K–2)
  • CSI (3–5)
  • Applied Python Programming (9–12)
  • Ukulele 2 (5–8)
  • Research Experience (10–12) Full day camp
  • Roots of America Order (11–12) Full day camp
July 26–30
  • Tykes Lego (K–2)
  • Science of Harry Potter (2–4)
  • Art and Design (4–8)
  • Watershed Restoration (9–12) Full day camp
  • Super Hero Science (K–2)
  • Exploring Energy (3–5)
  • Movie Making (4-8)
  • Watershed Restoration (9–12) Full day camp

Camp Descriptions by Grade Level

Grade levels vary by camp. Please read carefully to make sure your student(s) is appropriately placed. Camps are listed alphabetically by grade band. Register for the grade your student will be entering in fall 2021.

Elementary (Kindergarten–Grade 5)

Art 2D/3D — July 19–23

Grades 3–5
This camp takes old favorites and combines them with new projects while exploring the elements and principles of 2D and 3D art through the mediums of watercolor, graphite, colored pencils, wood, clay and metals.

art and Design — July 26–30

Grades 4–8

Love to create new costumes, art projects and sculptures? Explore basic art principles that can be applied to making your own dynamic and creative designs. Camp will involve a range of 3D media.

ART in NATURE — July 12–16
 (VIRTUAL CAMP)
Grades K–2
Inspired by Nature! Get up close and personal with the life of a plant. We’ll dream up amazing art works using seeds, leaves, and petals as we become scientists studying the natural world. Expect a lot of creative creations with this camp!

CLASSIC CARTOONING: A GOOGENIUS CAMP — June 21–25

Grades 2–10
Learn the basics of cartoon strip and panel development. Create characters, add expressions and learn inking techniques. A treasury will be assembled at the end of the class. Returnees will be challenged.

COOL Critters and Crawlies — July 12–16

Grades K–2

Hakuna Matata is the theme for this camp as we explore the awesome world of bugs from butterflies to beetles, spiders to wasps and insects in between. (Formerly Creepy Crawlies)

Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels: A GooGenius Camp — June 21–25

Grades 4–12

Hone your graphic story-telling skills and create a collective graphic novel. Comic book, manga and basic graphic novel illustrations highlighted. Returnees welcome for more advanced exercises and a final project.

CRAZY CHEMISTRY — JUNE 14–18 and June 28–july 2

Grades K–2 — June 14–18
Grades 3–5 — June 28–July 2

Solids, liquids and gasses — oh my! Polymers, pH and density — no lie. Come explore chemistry like never before with hands-on, exciting experiments and activities designed to satisfy both blooming and budding scientists. Who doesn’t like liquid nitrogen, dry ice, alka seltzer rockets, flubber and so much more? (Activities appropriate to the age group)

CSI — July 19–23

Grades 3–5 

How do modern-day detectives put the pieces of evidence together to solve crime? Find out the tricks and high-tech gadgets used as you solve an all-new crime. Topics covered include fingerprinting, DNA analysis, blood typing and more!

dive into dissection — July 12–16

Grades 3–6
Have you ever wondered what’s on the inside of animals? Join us to discover animals from the inside out. Apply dissection techniques to a wide variety of organisms and their anatomical parts. (Formerly Disgusting Dissection)

Doing science with disney — July 19–23

Grades K–2

Come explore science in the lands created by Disney. Heroes, villains and sidekicks alike will be our focus as we learn about all the special ways they use gems, energy and structures within their magical kingdoms.

EV3 LEGO MINDSTORMS BASIC — June 14–18

Grades 3–5

Welcome to the exciting world of Lego Robotics, EV3 style. Get an introduction to machines, robot construction, programming and teamwork as your group builds robots and completes challenges.

EV3 LEGO Mindstorms intermediate — june 28–July 2

Grades 4–8

Loved EV3 Basics Camp and want to learn more EV3 Mindstorms programming? Then this camp will give you new programming challenges to face, sensors to explore and robots to build. For those with some Mindstorms programming experience.

Exploring ecosystems — June 14–18

Grades 3–6

Step outside to explore local ecosystems! Whether it’s in the woods or water, there are critters everywhere that interact with their environment. You will get to collect, observe and identify organisms and measure abiotic factors to understand how they all interact to form an ecosystem.

Exploring Energy: A MAKE and Take Camp — July 26–30

Grades 3–5
Students will use common household or hardware items to study and create mini-projects that can be taken home for keeps! Science concepts that may be explored include sound and light waves, colors and optics, electricity and magnets, wind and solar power, heat and temperature.

HAMMER TIME — July 19–23

Grades K–2
Grab your hard hats and strap on your tool belts as we discover the science behind tools, materials and machinery. Let's get excited about the world of construction.

Movie Making — July 26–30

Grades 4–8

Explore the world of digital video communication through the creativity and technology of movie making. You’ll use digital video cameras, editing software and Mac computers to make your own documentary movie.

PRE-HISTORIC PLANET — June 28–July 2

Grades K–2
Discover the world of dinosaurs as we learn the types, where they lived and what they ate. Explore rock formations, volcanoes, bones and fossils.

New! Roller Coaster Science — June 21–25

Grades 3–5
Roller Coaster science will bring out creativity in everyone as campers will explore how to build ramps, runs, and machines as well as how to make small adjustments and problem solve. Each project lets campers explore a specific scientific concept that will impact the coasters they build.

Science of art — June 21–25

Grades 3–5
Explore the awesome world of art as you create your own masterpieces and learn the science of painting, ceramics, printing, photography and sculpture.

Science of Harry Potter — June 21–25 and July 26–30

Grades 2–4 — July 26–30
Grades 3–5 — June 21–25
Upon arrival Monday, you’ll be “sorted” into houses and whisked away to the magical world of science — Harry Potter style. Perform experiments that illuminate the “science” from the Goblet of Fire to the Deathly Hallows.

Science of Star Wars — June 28–July 2 and July 12–16

Grades 3–5
The Force is calling you to travel galaxies a long time ago and far, far away. We will explore force shields, photons, creatures, droids and life forces. Build your own hovercraft and more as you join forces during our weeklong Jedi training.

SUPER SCIENCE SAMPLER — June 21–25

Grades K–2
Looking for a mix? This camp will have different themes each day from our K–2 camps… Club Vet, Cool Critters and Crawlies, Prehistoric Planet and Pirates Cove.

SUPERHERO SCIENCE — July 26–30

Grades K–2
Come to Superhero Science to discover the facts behind superpowers! We’ll cover everything from Iron Man’s flight skills and the biology of Hulk to Wolverine’s incredible senses and Thor’s knowledge of the universe. Who knows… you might become a superhero yourself!

TINKER ENGINEERs — June 28–July 2 and July 12–16

Grades K–2
Calling all tinkerers! Want to see what you can make from from your imagination? Come learn how to make simple machines and create your own contraptions to make stories come to life.

TYKES LEGO — June 14–16 and July 26–30

Grades K–2
Get ready to build awesome Lego structures as you are introduced to the science of simple machines, the mechanics of motion and the control of forces.

UKE CAN DO IT! SESSION 1 — June 21–25

Grades 2–8
This week long camp will be a first experience in ukulele playing (an instrument for lifelong music-making)​! Students will strum their way through the week learning basic chords, notes and as many songs as they can. The week will end with a short recital to celebrate all we have learned. Bound to be one of your child's favorite weeks of the summer! (No need to purchase a ukulele to participate. Ukuleles will be provided for registered campers to use during camp.)​ Students entering grades 2–8 who attend Uke 1 are then welcome to attend Uke 2!

Uke Can Do It! Session 2 — July 19–23

Grades 5–8
This week long camp will be a continued experience in ukulele playing. Students who are enrolled must have taken Session 1 either this summer or the summer before (2018). Students will strum their way through the week continuing to learn new chords and new songs! The week will end with a short recital to celebrate all we have learned. Bound to be one of your child's favorite weeks of the summer! (No need to purchase a ukulele to participate. Ukuleles will be provided for registered campers to use during camp.) Students entering grades 2–8 who attend Uke 1 are then welcome to attend Uke 2!

Videogame making with scratch — July 12–16

Grades 3–5
Program your own stories, artwork, animation and more with this simple computer program, Scratch. Explore the possibilities of computer science with this web-based platform then continue your creations at home after camp.

Middle School (Grades 6–8)

ART AND DESIGN — July 26–30

Grades 4–8

Love to create new costumes, art projects and sculptures? Explore basic art principles that can be applied to making your own dynamic and creative designs. Camp will involve a range of 3D media.

CLASSIC CARTOONING: A GOOGENIUS CAMP — JUNE 21–25

Grades 2–10
Learn the basics of cartoon strip and panel development. Create characters, add expressions and learn inking techniques. A treasury will be assembled at the end of the class. Returnees will be challenged.

Crazy Chemistry — June 14–18
Grade 6–8
Calling all chemists! Come spend time with us in a college chemistry lab to explore elements, chemical and physical properties, solutions, polymers, states of matter (liquid nitrogen, dry ice and hydrogen balloons!) and more in this week-long immersion in all things chemistry!

Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels: A GooGenius Camp — June 21–25

Grades 4–12

Hone your graphic story-telling skills and create a collective graphic novel. Comic book, manga and basic graphic novel illustrations highlighted. Returnees welcome for more advanced exercises and a final project.

DIVE DEEPER into Dissection — June 21–25
Grades 7–10

Hone your future skills as a surgeon! Explore deeper and advance your dissection skills through comparative anatomy of animals from different classes (think reptile, mammal, etc.) with and without backbones!

Exploring Ecosystems — June 14–18

Grades 3–6
Step outside to explore local ecosystems! Whether it’s in the woods or water, there are critters everywhere that interact with their environment. You will get to collect, observe and identify organisms and measure abiotic factors to understand how they all interact to form an ecosystem.

EV3 Lego Mindstorms – INTERMEDIATE  — JuNE 28–July 2 

Grades 4–8
Loved EV3 Basics Camp? Come get new programming challenges to face, sensors to explore, and new robots to build with our intermediate camp! For those with some Mindstorms programming experience.

EV3 Lego Mindstorms Challenge — July 12–16
Grades 7–12
We know you still love your LEGOs and Mindstorms. Middle and high school students still get to join the fun of Mindstorms program and build challenges based on FIRST Lego League prior competitions. Come show us what you can do.
**Camp intended for students with prior Mindstorms experience.

INVENTING IN 3D — June 28–July 2; July 12–16
Grades 6–12
Bring your creations to life with online drafting and 3D printing. Come explore this cutting edge technology along with developing skills in mechanical drawing, material testing, and engineering design.

MOVIE MAKING — JULY 26–30
Grades 4–8 
Explore the world of digital video communication through the creativity and technology of movie making. You’ll use digital video cameras, editing software and Mac computers to make your own documentary movie.

Movie Making 2.0 — June 14–18
Grades 6–9
Get ready for cinema cameras, boom mics and real experience of a serious film production. This camp will upgrade your creativity and skills, and help you produce a documentary movie at a higher level.

NEUROSCIENCEJune 21–25
Grades 8–12
Explore the power of the brain! Have you ever wanted to record your own brain activity or dissect a real brain? Have you ever been curious about how our brain controls our movements or how our senses work? If so, this is the camp for you! Come explore these topics and many more as we unpack the power of our minds!

TAKING COMMAND OF CIRCUITS — June 28–July 2
Grades 6–9
Electronics are all around us – be part of creating them! Practice the logic of programming, explore how your favorite technologies use information, and build your own electronic circuits.

UKE CAN DO IT! SESSION 1 — JUNE 21–25

Grades 2–8
This week long camp will be a first experience in ukulele playing (an instrument for lifelong music-making)​! Students will strum their way through the week learning basic chords, notes and as many songs as they can. The week will end with a short recital to celebrate all we have learned. Bound to be one of your child's favorite weeks of the summer! (No need to purchase a ukulele to participate. Ukuleles will be provided for registered campers to use during camp.)​ Students entering grades 2–8 who attend Uke 1 are then welcome to attend Uke 2!

UKE CAN DO IT! SESSION 2 — JULY 19–23

Grades 5–8
This week long camp will be a continued experience in ukulele playing. Students who are enrolled must have taken Session 1 either this summer or the summer before (2018). Students will strum their way through the week continuing to learn new chords and new songs! The week will end with a short recital to celebrate all we have learned. Bound to be one of your child's favorite weeks of the summer! (No need to purchase a ukulele to participate. Ukuleles will be provided for registered campers to use during camp.) Students entering grades 2-8 who attend Uke 1 are then welcome to attend Uke 2!

WEBSITES AND ANIMATION — June 21–25; July 19–23  (Virtual Camp)
Grades 6–9 
What’s behind those websites and games you love? Pull back the curtain on technology and learn to program your own websites and animations. Camp uses free software that can be continued to be used at home after camp! No experience necessary.
**The June 21–25 session will be in person; the July 19–23 session will be virtual.

Wonders of the Watershed — July 12–16
Grades 6–8
Water is vital to all life! That life depends on the quality of that water. In this camp, you will get to work beside Hope College students to sample water from a local river, run chemical and biological tests and use the results to determine its quality and ability to support life. 

High School (Grades 9–12)

APPLIED PYTHON PROGRAMMING — July 19–23
Grades 9–12
Explore the fun ways programming is used in electronics controls, application development, and machine learning. For those with prior programming experience, apply your knowledge and build your skills to apply programming in ways we use every day.

CLASSIC CARTOONING: A GOOGENIUS CAMP — JUNE 21–25
Grades 2–10
Learn the basics of cartoon strip and panel development. Create characters, add expressions and learn inking techniques. A treasury will be assembled at the end of the class. Returnees will be challenged.

Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels: A GooGenius Camp — June 21–25

Grades 4–12

Hone your graphic story-telling skills and create a collective graphic novel. Comic book, manga and basic graphic novel illustrations highlighted. Returnees welcome for more advanced exercises and a final project.

DIVE DEEPER into Dissestion — June 21–25
Grades 7–10

Hone your future skills as a surgeon! Explore deeper and advance your dissection skills through comparative anatomy of animals from different classes (think reptile, mammal, etc.) with and without backbones!

EV3 Lego Mindstorms Challenge — July 12–16
Grades 7–12
We know you still love your LEGOs and Mindstorms. Middle and high school students still get to join the fun of Mindstorms program and build challenges based on FIRST Lego League prior competitions. Come show us what you can do.
**Camp intended for students with prior Mindstorms experience.

INVENTING IN 3D — June 28–July 2; July 12–16
Grades 6–12 
Bring your creations to life with online drafting and 3D printing. Come explore this cutting edge technology along with developing skills in mechanical drawing, material testing, and engineering design.

Joyous Music! Choir and Jazz Expressions — June 14–18 (Full Day)
Grades 10–12
Join Music Department artists for an in-depth exposure to choir and jazz performance. Through group rehearsals, theory classes, private lessons and professional concerts, campers will expand their technique and performance skills. Choir and instrumental jazz musicians are invited to apply.

Movie Making 2.0 — June 14–18
Grades 6–9
Get ready for cinema cameras, boom mics and real experience of a serious film production. This camp will upgrade your creativity and skills, and help you produce a documentary movie at a higher level.

NEUROSCIENCEJune 21–25
Grades 8–12
Explore the power of the brain! Have you ever wanted to record your own brain activity or dissect a real brain? Have you ever been curious about how our brain controls our movements or how our senses work? If so, this is the camp for you! Come explore these topics and many more as we unpack the power of our minds!

Nursing Health Professions and Human Performance — June 14–18 (Full Day)
Grades 9–12
Explore the exciting range of careers in health care and participate in many of the skills required to be successful in nursing, health care and the development/improvement of human performance. Hands-on daily experiences will be split between nursing and kinesiology department labs. Focusing on human anatomy, nursing skills, athletic training, strength and conditioning, performance psychology and exercise physiology.

Pillars: Exploring the Roots of American Order — July 19–23 (Full Day)
Grades 10–12
A partnership with the The Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal
At a time when American history is contested on many fronts it is important to understand the essential beliefs and institutions that hold America together. As such, the new “Pillars” conference for high school students and select teachers traces the origins of the American tradition of order, justice and freedom through Hebraic and Christian belief, classical philosophy and law, British political experience, and the ideas and institutions of colonial and early-republican America. Over the course of the conference, speakers will explore these themes through the significance of five cities: Jerusalem, Athens, Rome, London and Philadelphia.

PYTHON AND RASPBERRY PI PROGRAMMING — June 28–July 2
Grades 8–12
Get started on your own Raspberry Pi projects. Learn Python programming and the basic logic of the Raspberry Pi microcontroller to control a range of devices. Cost includes your own Raspberry Pi and circuitry components.

Research Experience – Environmental Chemical Analysis — July 19–23
Grades 10–12 
Come explore the chemistry behind environmental science. High school students participate in experimental research design and chemical analysis using monitors and in lab experiments. Campers select and design their own research questions, collect their own data, perform analysis and report their results. Campers gain research skills for upper level high school classes along with future college classes.
**Campers must have completed a year of high school to apply.

TAKING COMMAND OF CIRCUITS — June 28–July 2
Grades 6–9
Electronics are all around us – be part of creating them! Practice the logic of programming, explore how your favorite technologies use information, and build your own electronic circuits.

WATERSHED RESTORATION — July 26–30 (Full Day)
Grades 9–12
Here in Michigan, we are fortunate to be surrounded by water. Let’s fight to protect that water! The focus of this camp is on water restoration. Campers will work alongside Hope College students to collect and analyze water from a local river to determine the water quality and produce a remediation plan to be reviewed by the Macatawa Area Coordinating Council.

WEBSITES AND ANIMATION — June 21–25; July 19–23  (Virtual Camp)
Grades 6–9 
What’s behind those websites and games you love? Pull back the curtain on technology and learn to program your own websites and animations. Camp uses free software that can be continued to be used at home after camp! No experience necessary.
**The June 21–25 session will be in person; the July 19–23 session will be virtual.

Additional Information

LUNCHTIME SUPERVISION
Lunchtime supervision is available for campers enrolled in a morning and afternoon camp during the same week. Available Monday through Thursday, $40/week. Sign up when you register. All campers, regardless of age, staying on campus during lunchtime must register for safety concerns.
FINANCIAL AID
A limited number of 50% scholarships are available for campers. Determination usually made based on free and reduced school lunch. Indicate on your registration or contact sciencecamp@hope.edu for more information.
MEDICAL AND SPECIAL NEEDS
Please inform us of all medical and special needs for your child. We aim to create a welcome environment for all. However, we are not staffed for one-on-one assistance for students. Please indicate on your registration and we will contact you for further information.
SUPPORT US!

Science camps are self-funded through tuition and grants. Support us with a donation to our scholarship fund. 100% of donations go to campers in need.

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