Sticking our hands in mud; wading through streams and swamps; taking machines apart and designing our own; making musical instruments out of junk; wandering into the woods with a compass to get lost and find our way out again; making fires; programming robots; doing experiments; discussing big ideas; looking at the stars and trying things to see what happens. We will solve practical problems that we come across;. We’ll work in teams and figure out how to use the different skills that we have among us. We will combine science with art and music. We’ll have silly competitions to create the best zucchini hurling devices or water transport systems. We’ll walk down the road, banging on an old pot to measure the speed of sound. We’ll create our own model communities while learning about building design and surveying techniques. We will get wet and gooey and exhausted and we will fully experience the world around us. We’ll learn about the human body by pushing ourselves physically, measuring our own heart rates and making our own nutritious meals. And, in all of this, we won’t forget that we really do need to learn the significance of the second law of thermodynamics, properties of waves; units of energy; principles of evolution; atomic theory or why latent heat is such a big deal.
Our summer program is not intended to take the place of classroom science instruction - our mission is to engage, inspire and foster a lifelong interest in science learning and investigation. Learning basic ideas that cut across the sciences, and through other disciplines, is important to more focused study in particular fields. We give context to science and connect it to other parts of life. At the same time, we are committed to good, sound practices that are based in reason, in experience, and in data. Building a strong foundation is a critical part of any structure, and when it comes to learning about the workings of the natural world, it is critical to have basic knowledge and understanding to hold up the many layers that will be built on-top.