2018 JA STEM Camp Highlights

This year’s JA STEM Camp attracted a wonderful group of inquisitive, energetic, and inspirational young people. Check out the exciting science experiments and cool activities they did at camp:

  • The 3M Wizards were camper favorites, once again. They did a cryogenic presentation, allowing the kids to “play” with liquid nitrogen. It was an edge-of-your seat performance.
  • Medtronic gave kids a hands-on opportunity to hold a real pacemaker! Campers learned about the innovation behind changing a pacemaker from a bulky box into a tiny capsule-sized medical device. Campers were challenged to use innovation to engineer the tallest tower they could using only one marshmallow, uncooked spaghetti noodles, and a few pieces of tape.
  • The University of St. Thomas Chemistry Club brought the fun again this year! They allowed the kids to make (and eat) real ice cream by teaching them colligative properties. Campers also created an edible molecules using gumdrops. And, if that wasn’t enough, campers learned about chromatography through a cool M&M experiment and capillary action through a fun flower project.
  • STEM Bunnies were back by popular demand. Campers got to climb into pens to interact with the bunnies. STEM Bunnies Founder, 14-year-old Caleb Smith, then taught his fellow young adults about basic genetics and the steps he takes to run a successful non-profit.
  • XCEL Energy taught campers about the science and technology behind solar power, and even let the Campers race solar powered cars!
  • Olson Advertising gave an amazing presentation about marketing and advertising. They taught campers how to film stop-action video commercials to promote their JA BizTown business.
  • CenterPoint Energy brought a team of volunteers that gave a lively and entertaining presentation about working as engineers in the field of natural gas. Campers even got to tour their multi-million dollar CenterPoint natural gas tracking JEEP.
  • Campers learned about the engineering behind bridge building and competed in a Bridge Building Challenge. They also learned about non-Newtonian fluids and the chemistry behind making slime. They built catapults and optical illusion spinners.
  • Finally, campers got to work in a real job in JA BizTown while learning about different STEM careers, how to run a successful business, and manage a personal checking account.

Maya and Ben were “first timers” at camp, and they absolutely loved it! You may see kids that stick out in your mind as outstanding, but as parents, we see our kiddos grow in ways that others can’t. This camp was a stretch for both of our kids in so many ways – a stretch that I was hoping wasn’t going to be too big of an ask. It wasn’t. It gave them such a boost, and I am so grateful we took the leap and tried it. They are going for the next camp session and are so excited!” – Bridget Vanyo (parent)

Check out our camp photos

Check out the commercials campers created to promote their JA BizTown businesses.

Check out the stop-motion commercials campers created to promote their JA BizTown businesses.