Athens, Ga. – The State Botanical Garden of Georgia at the University of Georgia will offer summer camps for children ages 3-12 throughout June and July. Younger campers may attend “Sweet Pea Club” with a parent or grandparent. Older campers may attend weeklong day camps with more in-depth discovery and learning opportunities.
Registration for the summer camps is available at www.botgarden.uga.edu. In addition, interested campers may register at the education office in the Visitor Center and Conservatory of the botanical garden, which is located at 2450 South Milledge Avenue in Athens. Pre-registration is required.
The 2012 summer camp schedule is as follows.
Garden Earth Nature Camp: ages 5-8
Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Since Earth is a garden that everyone shares, during the weeklong adventures, children will learn about Earth’s garden while exploring natural and cultivated areas. Daily activities will include outdoor experiments, games and garden walks. Campers may attend one week from Garden Earth I and one week from Garden Earth II.
Garden Earth 1
Week I: June 11-15
Week II: June 18-22
Campers will explore pollinators, soil critters and food chains. Children will meet puppets Suga Magnolia, who is in charge of the flowers; Oli Earthworm, who takes care of the soil; and Madame Squirrel, who runs a woodland restaurant for all the creatures who live in the botanical garden. Indoor gardening projects, solar cooking treats and crafts projects will complement the exciting outdoor adventures.
Garden Earth II
Week I: July 9-13
Week II: July 23-27
Campers will investigate water, insects and trees. Visits to the Middle Oconee River and Orange Trail stream (both on the grounds of the botanical garden) will bring the world of the water critters to life. Children will explore insects in carnivorous pitcher plants and pitfall traps, as well as through fun discovery hunts. To top off the week, children will meet Old Man Spruce, who takes campers on a tour of his air cleaning factory through puppet shows, interactive games and forest investigations. Craft projects will complement each day’s activities.
Garden Explorer’s Camp: rising 4th graders-rising 7th graders
June 25-29, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Participants will engage in the scientific and artistic aspects of nature while exploring the cultivated areas and trails of the botanical garden. Garden explorers will spend mornings as cooperative teams of citizen scientists as they collect data contributing to long-term evaluation of garden ecosystems. Afternoons will be spent observing and experiencing the botanical garden as naturalists, while plant collecting, journaling and exploring natural history and plant lore.
Sweet Pea Club Camp: ages 3-4
July 16-18, 9-11 a.m.
Cost: $60 (includes parent and child), additional child – $30
Developed especially for young nature lovers and their parent or grandparent helpers, the Sweet Pea Club offers an introduction to the natural world. Each day focuses on a different “earthy” topic. Sample daily topics include A Visit with Old Man Spruce Tree, Adventures with Oli Earthworm in the Soil and Who’s Eating at Madame Squirrel’s Restaurant? Programs involve puppet shows, storytelling, indoor and outdoor learning games, nature crafts and garden explorations.
About the State Botanical Garden of Georgia
A Public Service and Outreach unit of the University of Georgia, the State Botanical Garden of Georgia provides the general public, including UGA faculty, staff and students of all ages, opportunities for recreation, events, research and learning using natural areas, display gardens and building spaces. For more information, see http://botgarden.uga.edu/.