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Schools plan summer camps

This is not the average summer camp.

Suffolk Public Schools Career and Technical Education staff members have planned seven enrichment camps for this year that include everything from building a personal rocket to creating a new video game from scratch.

“What we have tried to do is plan camp sessions that are going to be fun learning activities and something that will expose them to careers as well as personal enrichment,” said Gail Bess, the CTE coordinator for the schools. “We hope the kids are going to enjoy them.”

The camps are open only to middle-school students, which Bess said was due to both senior high school students’ busier schedules and to a desire to help develop middle schoolers’ career interests.

“We want to target the audience of students that parents are looking for some activities for them that are meaningful, enriching and educational,” Bess said. “We really wanted to focus on the middle schoolers. We want to give them some insight in what industries will offer.”

The following camps will be offered from July 6 to July 30 at King’s Fork Middle School:

Me and My Future (Morning Session 1) Students will participate in hands-on activities and computer research to learn about the variety of career choices available. They will identify the skills and educational requirements needed to succeed in the 21st century. It will be held July 6 through 9 from 8 a.m. to noon.

4Model Rocketry (Afternoon Session 2) Students will explore space by designing, building, and launching custom model rockets. Students will learn about aerodynamics and enhance math skills as they discover the “World of Model Rocketry.” It will be held July 6 through 9 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Woodworking (Morning Session 3) Students will use math skills to construct woodworking projects such as shelves, birdhouses and step stools. It will take place July 13 through 16 from 8 a.m. to noon.

Arts ‘n’ Crafts (Afternoon Session 4) Students will learn how to use arts and crafts to improve math skills, planning and organizational skills, as well as temperament. Each student will choose particular projects and at the end of the week will take home finished projects and new skills. It will take place July 13 through16 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Basic Cooking for Pre-Teens (Morning Session 5) Students will enjoy fun, hands-on, and tasty activities while learning basic cooking techniques to include basic measuring, following a recipe and kitchen sanitation. Preparing healthy snacks also will be included. It will take place July 20 through 23 from 8 a.m. to noon.

Basic Etiquette (Afternoon Session 6) Students will learn how to make lasting impressions through poise, body language, and personal grooming. They also will learn the art of making conversation, tips on handling introductions, and the proper way to shake hands. Formal and informal dining manners also will be included. Additionally, they will learn important electronic courtesies and the application of etiquette and manners as they relate to cell phones and email. It will take place July 20 through 23 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Gaming and Simulation (Session 7) Students will learn to create animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or sharing a video on the Web. They will explore gaming and simulation using Alice, an innovative 3D programming environment. Additionally, they will learn to drag and drop 3D objects (people, animals, and vehicles) to populate a virtual world. It will take place July 27 through 30 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. This session (Gaming and Simulation only) will be held at the Tidewater Community College Tri-Cities Center located in Northern Suffolk. Transportation will be provided to and from The Center from Nansemond River High School.

The registration fees are as follows:

$130 per student for 1 session (excluding session 7)

$175 per student for 1 week (or any two sessions)

$375 per student for 2 weeks (or any four sessions)

$575 per student for 3 weeks (or any six sessions)

$725 per student for 4 weeks

The registration form and fee payable to Suffolk Public Schools must be returned by Friday to Keesha Hicks, Suffolk Public Schools, P.O. Box 1549, Suffolk, VA 23439-1549. Call 925-6759 for additional information.

“We have camp without the bugs, the tents or the fire,” Bess said. “We’ll have a good time.”