Stu­dents ex­plore chem­i­cal re­ac­tions, science of bak­ing at Col­lege of South­ern Md.

Teens and Kids Col­lege of­fers more than typ­i­cal camp ex­pe­ri­ence for par­tic­i­pants

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By JAMIE ANFENSON-COMEAU jan­fen­son-comeau@somd­

Now in its 31st year, the Teens and Kids Col­lege at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land is not your typ­i­cal sum­mer camp.

Lau­ren Sut­ten, lead co­or­di­na­tor for the Teens and Kids Col­lege, said ap­prox­i­mately 3,000 stu­dents have en­rolled in the sum­mer camps on the La Plata, Prince Frederick and Leonard­town cam­puses.

The sum­mer en­rich­ment pro­grams, for chil­dren ages 5 to 14, are of­fered on all three cam­puses from June 19 to Aug. 11.

The week-long morn­ing and af­ter­noon camps have top­ics rang­ing from mad science spy camp to “Star Wars” stop an­i­ma­tion,

from choco­late to dig­i­tal pho­tog­ra­phy.

Some of the top­ics are the same as in pre­vi­ous years, but oth­ers are new.

“We try to change them up ev­ery few years so the kids have more of a se­lec­tion,” Sut­ten said.

In “Desserts and Pas­tries,” aspir­ing chefs and bak­ers learned how to make tasty con­fec­tions, learn­ing about dough prepa­ra­tion, bak­ing and mix­ing.

Chris­tine Jones, a pre-kinder­garten teacher at South­ern Mary­land Chris­tian Academy, is in her sec­ond year tak­ing part in the camps. She said her campers were work­ing on dirt cake, rice crispy sushi treats, dough­nuts and s’mores in­side a pie crust.

She said she hoped the stu­dents in her camp would learn to have fun with cook­ing, and also some sci­en­tific prin­ci­ples as­so­ci­ated with cook­ing and bak­ing.

Ava Wey­brecht said her fa­vorite part of the camp was, “mak­ing new friends and learn­ing new recipes.”

Jay Acevedo, 16, a camp coun­selor in train­ing, took part in the camps when he was younger, from 2006 to 2010. He fondly re­mem­bered tak­ing part in a ro­bot­ics camp.

“It was fun; we made ro­bots from scratch,” Acevedo said. “I loved do­ing things with my hands, and the camp gave me the chance to do so.”

Acevedo said he was glad to come back to the pro­gram as a CIT.

“I love this camp,” Acevedo said. “I thought I might come here for col­lege, so I thought I might like to come back and help with some camps.”

In “Mixin It Up,” stu­dents learned about prin­ci­ples of chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing through a num­ber of hands-on ex­per­i­ments.

Je­nee Green­wood, a Charles County Pub­lic Schools teacher who leads the chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing camp, said the camp is de­signed to in­tro­duce chil­dren to the world of chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing in a fun, en­gag­ing way.

“First, I want to let the kids know what a chem­i­cal engi­neer does. Then we start mak­ing things,” Green­wood said. “We’re try­ing to solve prob­lems with science, ba­si­cally.”

On Wed­nes­day, the campers mixed oil and wa­ter and food col­or­ing to make their own lava lamps. Ja­son Shane, 9, said the best part of the camp was watch­ing how dif­fer­ent sub­stances re­acted and changed.

Sut­ten said that while there is an aca­demic com­po­nent, she hopes stu­dents will get more out of the ex­pe­ri­ence.

I hope that the kids learn life­long lessons and en­gage in the cur­ricu­lum, but it’s not just about aca­demics,” Sut­ten said. “We hope they’ll get that ex­po­sure to a col­lege cam­pus that will stay with them. Be­cause they’re ex­posed to a col­lege cam­pus from a young age, they’ll see col­lege as some­thing that might be in their fu­ture.”


Camp coun­selor Eva Fialkowski, left, looks in as Wil­liam Drake­ford, 10, and Jared Agenor, 9, watch their ex­per­i­ment in the “Mixin It Up” chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing camp at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land Wed­nes­day.

Camp coun­selor Je­nee Green­wood dis­cusses the prin­ci­ples of buoy­ancy dur­ing the “Mixin chem­i­cal engi­neer­ing camp Wed­nes­day. It Up”


Olivia Shar­row, 8, mixes a dessert while Olivia Har­al­son, 8, watches dur­ing the “Desserts and Pas­tries” camp at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

Brooke Barnes, 9, spoons in­gre­di­ents for dirt cake into her cup in “Desserts and Pas­tries” camp at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

Chris­tine Jones as­sists Vi­cente Chavar­ria, 8, in us­ing a hand mixer to make whipped cream dur­ing the “Desserts and Pas­tries” camp at the Col­lege of South­ern Mary­land Wed­nes­day morn­ing.

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