Registration is filling up fast for Summer Camp+, which this year will feature a fun circus theme called “Under the Big Top.” The popular K-6 camp will include a wide variety of circus-related activities, guests and special events.
Held on the lower school campus, Summer Camp+ provides morning learning experiences followed by age-appropriate afternoon electives. Students in grades 1-6 will have the option of enrolling in two different academic morning programs called Core Focus and Learning Opportunities in Literature (LOL). Core Focus is a more traditional learning environment with language arts, math and academic electives for each grade level. LOL features academic courses designed around a literary theme.
This year LOL will focus on the work of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss. Both programs feature the same afternoon options, including arts and crafts, circus arts, dance, water play, wall climbing, archery and array of other field sports. The Summer Camp+ program traditionally kicks off with Color Clash, a fun event held in the Bucknall gymnasium.
Groups of campers on yellow, red, green and blue teams participate in an array of silly games cheered on by captains (aka camp counselors) wearing color-coordinated outfits that run the gamut from superheroes to hula skirts and silly hats. The kickoff is just the start of a session full of friendly competition around the color groups.
“It’s a great way to build team spirit and the kids just love it,” said longtime camp counselor Troy Townzen, ’08. “Color Clash costumes and activities create some of the best camp memories!”
The program offers something for everyone, according to Joe Chung, program director of Summer Camp+ and elementary computer science teacher. On-site happenings often include a patriotic games bash, a water carnival, a sleepover for older campers, a presentation for parents and a birthday celebration for camp mascot “Ray.”
Campers also partake in numerous field trips, including bowling, miniature golf, the Oakland Zoo and Coyote Point. Last year enrollment for camps and other summer programs skyrocketed to a record-breaking 2,740 participants across all campuses, according to Harker’s summer programs office.
“We were thrilled and delighted at the incredible turnout for Harker summer last year … and are already seeing a jump in enrollment for this year!” enthused Kelly Espinosa, longtime director of summer programs. The Harker School has offered extensive summer programs for more than 50 years. The Summer Camp+ program is accredited nationally by the American Camping Association.