18 Summer Camps and Programs: Find What Works for Your Child

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In the chill of winter, summer weather is on your mind. That’s why it’s the perfect time to plan summer camp for your kids. Whether your child is an aspiring actor, studious scientist, or just looking to have fun and make new friends, there’s a perfect program right here in New England. Check out 18 amazing camps and programs for your family in the following pages.

Acera Summer STEAM Camp

Curiosity, creativity, and innovation come alive at Acera’s Summer Camp in Winchester. Immersed in STEAM-rich experiences, students ages 5 to 17 envision, design, build, experiment, code, problem-solve, make, innovate, film, paint, compose, and perform. Kids work alongside like-minded peers in Acera’s fully equipped Innovation Lab, led by experienced educators with backgrounds in engineering, science, architecture, and the arts. Acera offers both full-day and half-day programs, as well as early drop-off and late pickup. High school internships are available. Visit aceraschool.org/summer-camp or call 781-431-2514.

Boston Leadership Institute

Boston Leadership Institute offers award-winning summer STEM programs for teens led by distinguished professors. Three-week competitive admissions research programs designed for high-achieving students provide an in-depth focus on a hot topic (e.g., biotech, biomedical engineering, biomedical and surgical research, oncology, robotics/electronics, architecture, entrepreneurship, or finance) and provide a highly valuable credential for college applications. One-week options, such as anatomy, introduction to surgery, forensics, marine biology, physics of space, sports medicine, and big data, are perfect for those with more limited time and resources. BLI offers day or residential options in Wellesley, Waltham, and Longwood Medical Area locations. Visit bostonleadershipinstitute.com or call 781-431-2514.

Brooks School

Situated on a picturesque and historic 251-acre campus, Brooks School has earned the reputation as New England’s leader in summer programs. For the past 48 years, Brooks has been a quintessential summer experience and tradition for generations of families. Brooks is the flexible option offering day camps, summer school, and teen leadership development. Experienced counselors lead children through a wide array of activities, including archery, arts and crafts, gymnastics, boating, music, rope adventure course, swimming, performing arts, and more. Summer school teachers foster a safe learning environment focusing on academic enrichment instead of grades, which encourages students to take risks. In addition, the extended day services and convenient transportation throughout the Merrimack Valley and Metro Boston make Brooks the perfect option to accommodate working parents and busy schedules. Summer programs operate from June 24 through August 16, 2019. With a focus on independence, friendship, confidence building, and leadership, Brooks School Summer Programs invites your child to enjoy a summer of memorable experiences. Apply today at summer.brooksschool.org or call 978-725-6253.

Camp Birch Hill

Located in the beautiful Lakes Region of New Hampshire, Camp Birch Hill is a classic New England summer camp for boys and girls ages 6 through 16. Family-owned and operated, Camp Birch Hill welcomes campers each summer to its 100-plus acres of private, lakeside grounds for a genuine camp experience. The elective program allows campers to choose from more than 50 diverse activities to create a personalized schedule during their two-, four-, or six-week stay. Camp Birch Hill is globally recognized, welcoming campers and staff from all over the world. Voted in the top five New Hampshire summer camps by Boston Parents Paper three years in a row, Camp Birch Hill allows campers to enjoy their summer participating in activities they already love and discovering new interests. Visit campbirchhill.com for more information.

Deerfield Academy

The Experimentory at Deerfield Academy is an opportunity for your middle school student to discover new passions, challenge their thinking, and sample a boarding school experience. The interdisciplinary, project-based program inspires students to create their best work, grow personally, and have a ton of fun along the way. They will make new friends from across the country and around the world, grow in confidence, learn collaborative skills, and sample all that Deerfield Academy has to offer. Open to students currently in grades 6 to 8; two- and four-week summer sessions available. For more information, visit deerfield.edu/experimentory or call 413-774-1436.

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EXPLO

For more than 40 years, EXPLO is where bright and curious students from 90 countries have come to practice living with daring and courage. EXPLO is a community where students feel truly known—where they experience being part of a group of individuals who value their differences and cheer every attempt at authenticity. That’s why students at EXPLO are willing to put themselves out there and gather the courage to be the truest version of themselves. EXPLO summer programs offer more experiential courses and workshops than any other summer program. Students explore subjects from business management and surgical interventions to off-road vehicle design, criminal investigations, and fashion design as part of a vibrant global community. With no tests or grades, students feel comfortable taking risks that they might typically shy away from in a high-stakes environment. The result is a sense of freedom to choose meaningful experiences that will serve them well past the summer. Exploration extends far beyond the classrooms on EXPLO’s outstanding campuses. Each day is intentionally planned to include activities and events that range from the arts to athletics to community engagement and more. Weekends take students off campus to discover destinations throughout New England and New York, with more than 20 different trips offered per campus on Saturdays and Sundays. EXPLO offers one-, two-, and three-week programs, with residential and day options on three campuses: Yale University for grades 10 through 12; Wellesley College for grades 8 and 9; and Wheaton College for grades 2 through 7. Bus transportation is available for day students from locations throughout Greater Boston and Providence. To learn more about how EXPLO can help make summer meaningful, visit explo.org. You may also email summer@explo.org or call 781-762-7400.

Hale Reservation

Hale features 1,137 acres of adventure in Westwood and Dover with miles of trails, two ropes courses, four ponds, and multiple beaches. A leader in outdoor education since 1918, Hale has stood the test of time. Hale Day Camp offers classic camp activities (and free bus transportation) for campers ages 4 and up. Counselors teach swimming, boating, archery, arts and crafts, field games, hiking, mountain biking, and outdoor skills at its secluded campus. Hale Summer Club offers similar activities for children, plus services and classes for adults such as childcare, yoga, and aqua aerobics. Members enjoy access to its gated beach and special events. Visit halereservation.org or call 781-326-1770.

Hidden Valley

Since 1948, Hidden Valley has hosted the finest in arts and outdoor programs for children ages 8 to 14, fostering friendship, skill development, and personal growth. Professional staff, directors who have lived on site for almost 30 years, delicious meals, a private lake and pool, and 350 acres of fields and forest all inspire parents to express their gratitude. “Peter and Meg have developed a nurturing and creative environment that fosters independence and interdependence at the same time,” says one parent. Learn more at hiddenvalleycamp.com.

Hill House, Inc.

On June 17, the Hill House summer camp team celebrates the 20th anniversary of summer in the city for children ages 3 to 12. Weekly themes, a balance between structure and play, field trips, and age-appropriate activities promise a well-rounded experience. The goal is simple—to provide families with a high-quality, safety-conscious camp in Downtown Boston. The summer programming allows for campers to build friendships, gain confidence, explore an urban environment, and have fun. Visit hillhouseboston.org or call 617-227-838 to see what they’re all about.

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JCC Greater Boston Summer Camp

When school’s out, the fun begins. At JCC Greater Boston Summer and Vacation Camps, children can experience the magic and wonder of camp with an amazing day or overnight camp. Attend one of the day camps: Grossman is a traditional camp experience, Kaleidoscope is an arts and science camp, and other specialty camps offer one-week programs centered around tennis, swim, technology, and theater. Or explore Kingswood, a traditional overnight camp in southern Maine. Summer preschool and school vacation programing are also available. Find the camp that’s perfect for your child and family today at bostonjcc.org/camp.

Kabeyun

Kabeyun offers a unique environment for boys ages 7 and up to learn new skills, accept new challenges, and develop deep friendships. The camp’s combination of structure and independence help boys develop self-awareness, responsibility, and the self-confidence that comes from taking risks within a supportive community. Boys choose their own activities each day and set their own goals with caring, experienced counselors. Activities include camp staples such as archery, arts, music, and drama. On the waterfront, boys learn to swim, sail, canoe, windsurf, and wakeboard. In addition to tennis, soccer, and other traditional sports, Kabeyun offers up to 25 trips per week for boys who want to experience the adventures of rock climbing, whitewater kayaking, canoeing, hiking, and fishing in the White Mountains. Founded in 1924, Kabeyun sits on 85 wooded acres on Lake Winnipesaukee’s Alton Bay, about 90 minutes from Boston. The camp enrolls up to 120 boys per session, for four- and eight-week sessions. There is a two-week option for the youngest boys. Visit kabeyun.org or call 603-875-3060.

Kingsley Montessori School

Uniquely nestled in the heart of Back Bay, Kingsley Montessori School offers student-driven, experiential programming year-round. Summer in the city at Kingsley provides students with an opportunity to pursue their interests throughout the summer while exploring and utilizing all of the opportunities Boston has to offer. Join Kingsley Montessori School for a summer focused on nature, sports, arts, music, engineering, and adventure in the city for ages 3 to 12. Reserve your spot at kingsley.org. Call 617-226-4903 with any questions about the program.

Kingsley Pines Camp

Kingsley Pines Camp in southern Maine puts a premium on keeping kids happy and parents at ease. Kingsley Pines is full of discovery and adventure; campers are swept up in the enthusiasm and fun activities from the moment they arrive. They quickly form lifelong friendships and gain independence in an “unplugged” environment with staff serving as the kind of role models parents expect. Discover more about the two- and three-week coed programs for ages 8 to 16 at kingsleypines.com or call 207-894-9030.

Maine Camp Experience

There’s nothing like summers with Maine Camp Experience. These 30-plus premier overnight camps located throughout Maine provide natural beauty, strong traditions and values, and top-notch activities, instruction, and trips. Campers ages 7 to 17 unplug, make lifelong friends, learn new skills, and gain confidence and independence, while enjoying lake and land sports, arts, nature, outdoor adventures, and fun camp traditions. Sessions are from one to eight weeks. Contact Laurie the Campcierge for free, personalized guidance to help families select the best camp at laurie@mainecampexperience.com. Call 877-92-MAINE or visit mainecampexperience.com for more information.

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Russian School of Mathematics

RSM is an after-school, kindergarten through grade 12 math enrichment program with locations in 11 states and a virtual classroom. Recently featured in NPR and the Atlantic magazine as one of the key players in the “Math Revolution,” and ranked one of the best schools in the world by the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth, RSM helps children of all levels build a solid math foundation and develop their critical thinking and problem-solving skills. For more information, visit russianschool.com or call 855-MATH-855.

Summer Blazers Tutoring

Summer Blazers Tutoring is a seasonal agency that connects families with independent school teachers during the months of June, July, and August. Teachers focus their knowledge and skills to construct individualized learning experiences built upon mutually agreed expectations. Families are free to select a tutor from a diverse inventory of experienced independent school teachers from the Boston area. Therefore, the goal is twofold: provide students with a customized and enjoyable learning experience that prepares them for the unique challenges of the upcoming school year, and provide independent school teachers with a fulfilling summer work environment. Learn more at summerblazers.com or by calling 508-380-5720.

Torit Montessori

Torit Montessori’s summer program is a fun and educational mix of science, creativity, and sports for children ages 6 to 12. In partnership with Empow Studios and Torit’s fabulous staff, each three-week session offers robotics, coding, game design, art, drama, swimming, tennis, and soccer, with weekly field trips to some of Boston’s favorite places. Extended day options are available. Come see the Torit difference at the Boston Elementary Campus on Beacon Hill for kindergarten through grade 6, or the early childhood campus for infant, toddler, and preschool at 45 Province Street in Boston. Call 617-523-4000 to book a tour or visit toritschool.org for more information.

Wellesley College

Wellesley Pre-College Summer Programs are empowering young women beyond the classroom. This summer, Wellesley invites high school girls to experience what Wellesley is all about. Students will gain valuable insights about college life, engage with a diverse group of students, build confidence, and enhance their leadership skills. Students can earn credit in the four-week Immersive Program or a delve deep into a specific subject in the one-week Exploratory Workshops. This is an amazing opportunity for teens to join a dynamic group of young women investing in themselves, their futures, and who they want to be. Learn more about Wellesley Pre-College Summer Programs at wellesley.edu/summer/precollege.

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ACA New England: Why go with an American Camp Association-accredited camp in New England? An ACA accreditation assures parents that a camp has undergone a thorough peer review of its operation—from staff qualifications and training, to emergency management. The American Camp Association collaborates with experts from youth-serving agencies to assure that current camp practices reflect the most up-to-date, research-based standards. Camps and ACA form partnerships that promote growth and fun in environments committed to safety. Look for the ACA accredited logo when registering for camp and visit acanewengland.org for more information.

Pick up your copy of the January 2019 issue for the print edition of this special section.

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