Friends of Rye Nature Center’s summer day camp provides adventure and ecological exploration for preschool through seventh grade. Set on 47 acres of forest and trails, our camp creates an ideal opportunity to explore the outdoors. Our hands-on approach to scientific inquiry and connect everyone to nature by making environmental stewardship fun!
SESSION ONE: JUNE 25-29
TAKE THE CHALLENGE!
Join us this week as we explore the various elements on our Con Edison STEM Challenge Course. Test yourself and work with other campers to complete team-building exercises on our Whale Watch and create earthquake-proof structures on our one-of-a-kind Quakes n’ Shakes structure. Campers will problem solve, participate in fun, group activities, and use their knowledge of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in a unique, outdoor setting.
SESSION TWO: JULY 2-6 (no camp on July 4)
LEGENDS THAT LIVE ON
Nature has inspired the mythical creatures in popular legends and folklore time and time again. We will explore the reasoning and unlock the mystery behind fictional characters like unicorns, fairies, and werewolves. Join us as we take a look at the amazing adaptations and unique features that have influenced some of the most popular legends.
SESSION THREE: JULY 9-13
Grab your goggles and lab coats as we experiment and observe the chemical reactions that result in the greenest scientific and engineering achievements. Challenge your knowledge of electricity, gravitational forces, and energy while you build simple robots, rockets, and solar ovens.
SESSION FOUR: JULY 16-20
THE GREAT FOREST ESCAPE
Tick tock! The clock is running and on Monday morning, the entire camp will be faced with a riddle. Each day, campers will participate in a series of interactive, eco-based challenges to receive the clues to solve the puzzle. Every challenge that is successfully completed, from tracking animals to examining evidence under a microscope, will bring us one step closer to completing this camp-wide forest escape experience.
SESSION FIVE: JULY 23-27
READY, SET, SURVIVE
Get ready, get set, and join us in the forest as we learn survival strategies! Mimic animal instincts and learn how to outsmart predators. Each group will tackle survival challenges by building natural shelters, using simple tools to create fire, and relaying messages through coded communication.
SESSION SIX: JULY 30-AUGUST 3
MY ARCHITECT IS A REAL ANIMAL
Want to learn how biology meets engineering? Animals’ homes tell us an incredible amount about the life and behavior of a species. We will discover why location is key to the survival of termite mounds; observe how beaver dams impact their local environment; and uncover the effects of rising water temperatures on coral reefs. Each day campers will test their skills as both structural and hydraulic engineers of the natural world!
SESSION SEVEN: AUGUST 6-10
POWERFUL PLANTS AND SUPERFOODS
Plants have incredible powers! From medicinal uses to culinary creations, vegetation is the key for our planet’s and our own health. Discover how to soothe injuries using a succulent, taste the flavor-changing power of herbs, and relax with the sensory effect of smell. Join us as we create tried and true concoctions and taste our way through the week.
Entering Preschool or Kindergarten
9:00 am – 1:00pm
Designed for our youngest campers’ growing minds and bodies, our Explorers program is grounded in early childhood educational values and promotes nature exploration and inquiry. Each day is structured to create confidence and comfort as children discover the Nature Center’s forests, wildlife, resident animals, ponds, and garden. Group size is limited to 16 children. Children must be at least 3 ½ years old by the start of camp. The campers should be sent with a morning snack and healthy lunch.
Entering K – 5th grade in the fall*
9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Discoverers enjoy a variety of nature and science activities taught by our camp’s naturalists and specialists. Gardening, hiking, natural history, and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) projects fill these campers’ days. During free time, campers can cool off in our sprinklers and play games such as “Deer and Wolf”, FRNC’s version of hide-and-seek.
*Children are grouped by their age and/or the grade they are entering in the fall. FRNC strives to ful ll friend requests. Children will be grouped within one grade level or 1.5 years of their age.
NATURALISTS IN TRAINING (NITS)
(includes late night and weekly field trips)
Entering 6th or 7th grade in the fall
Monday – Wednesday, Friday 9:00 am – 3:00 Thursday 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
Our NITs enjoy the freedom and responsibilities of being the oldest campers on our 47 acres. A typical day includes activities with our specialists and naturalists as well as time to pursue the group’s own interests and develop outdoor skills. Each Thursday, the NIT’s stay late for a cookout dinner, campfire, and twilight exploration of the camp grounds. Field trips change weekly. In the past, groups have visited the Queens Botanical Garden, Liberty Science Center, and the Discovery Musem.
Membership at the Environmentalist level ($100) or higher valid through program date is required to register.