If you are planning on sending your child to summer camp, but would prefer that they learn something rather than spend their time running around playing games, then you should pick a summer camp that offers a cultural learning experience. Below are three popular areas to choose from: Science, Art, and Music. Many camps will offer short duration experiences (not the entire summer) so you could even enroll your child in several different camps throughout the summer.
Science And Nature
If your child loves to learn about dinosaurs and fossils, then you can enroll them in a summer camp at one of the city's museums that deal in natural sciences. These programs take kids on a tour of the dinosaur reconstructions, and they examine the fossils with specially trained guides. The tours are all done indoors, so this is a great pick during the especially hot days.
There are also programs that run at the various city zoos. They offer camps for kids of different ages. The zoo has educators that plan programs that introduce particular species of animals. The children will learn about the habitat and behavior of the animals, and will get to see the animals up close and personal. There are classroom talks as well as trips around the zoo exhibits to look at and discuss the different animals.
If your child likes to paint and draw, and wants to be outside rather than in a classroom, then look for one of the programs that are held at the city parks. These camps bring kids to the parks, where they are taught how to draw wildlife (squirrels, ducks) as well as flowers, trees, and rock formations.
There are many camps for children interested in music. They can roughly be broken down into three categories:
These music summer camps are for kids who want to learn more about music. Perhaps you've taken them to the opera or to a jazz concert, and they really loved it. Well, then this is the type of camp you should look for. It will help introduce them to a broad range of a particular musical genre (e.g., in a classical music appreciation camp they might see performances of Haydn, Mozart, Bach, and Schubert and then discuss them with a teacher.)
If your kid loves singing and dancing and acting, then this is a definite must. They will get to put on a show, learn stage projection and lots of other fun stuff.
If they are a budding musician, then a camp is an excellent way let them immerse themselves in a particular instrument.