08.13.2014Personal Tech

#SmartSummer: Driveway Science Camp Ignites Summer Learning Bug

This is part of our #SmartSummer series, where we’re sharing stories related to using tech to enhance summer activities and fun with family and friends.

This is a guest post from Andi Ferguson, who helps Verizon Wireless with public relations in Ohio and West Virginia.

Inspired by a year of intermittently observing my child’s kindergarten teacher ignite curiosity in her students, I decided to curate and host a driveway summer science camp series.

Each science camp is hosted on a Sunday evening in our driveway, with topics ranging from chemical reactions to thermodynamics. Inevitably what makes each experiment more interesting to the neighborhood kids (and their parents accompanying them) is involving technology. If an experiment goes well, I can instantly share information online about the experiment from my Verizon Wireless smartphone. If an experiment fails, I share a YouTube video of the same experiment going well in a lab.


This video shows what happens when I used a Lifeproof™ case on my iPhone 5s to capture a chemical reaction during one of my science camps. Without worrying about the device getting wet, I was able to capture a geyser of foam caused by nucleation. The kids loved it, as you can see by the giggles!

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you safely and successfully host a driveway summer science camp:

  1. Create the curriculum in advance and share with kids and their parents.
  2. Provide a list of equipment to bring to your driveway summer science camp. Providing supplies for experiments can get expensive otherwise.
  3. Invite parents to accompany kids to the experiments. This works well for both safety and learning purposes.

For more science learning resources, including instructions about the scientific method, visit Wonderopolis.org, a Thinkfinity project supported by the Verizon Foundation.

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