Camp Traditions

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The Hollingworth Center

Camp Traditions

The rhythm of our days during the month of July unfold each year as our campers and teachers participate in cherished camp traditions. These occasions always feature the creative expressions of the children and many o er the opportunity to include parents, family, and friends. The anticipation that the children exude as they look forward to these events lls the air with excitement and wonder.


Each class takes at least two eld trips each summer. The destinations vary from year to year but always enrich the topics of study. Our senior campers also enjoy a “coach bus” trip to a destination outside of the City where they explore concepts relating to structures.

We also present special performances that bring campers together in celebration of science. These events range from musicians to puppet shows to storytelling. We also host our own hands-on events providing campers with an opportunity grow their innovative thinking as they create and build. These events feature both high and low tech engineering design challenges.


On the penultimate morning of camp, families and friends are invited into the group rooms to experience many of the investigations the children engaged in at camp. This event is a special opportunity for campers to share their newly acquired knowledge and ongoing inquiries with their loved ones.

Following the Science Expo, campers invite their families to Columbia University’s College Walk where they present their individual art projects in a celebratory parade. Loved ones gather on the steps of the Alma Mater and cheer their campers on as they celebrate their accomplishments and creations.


On the final day of camp, children and teachers gather for a final camp-wide celebration. To much applause, each group performs a topic-themed song that they have prepared. This is an important event to campers, teachers, and leadership alike, as it is an affirmation of the positive, supportive, and curious Hollingworth community we cultivate. This event culminates with the celebration of our graduating class, where we send our rising fifth graders off into the future to keep learning, creating, and wondering.

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Hollingworth Hallmarks

As leaders in the field of early science education, Hollingworth educators work year round developing enriching methodologies with distinctive features. Many of these pedagogies are seamlessly woven into our ever-dynamic curriculum while others become signature pieces. These Hollingworth Hallmarks o er our campers unique experiences for self-directed and teacher-guided inquiry.


Research underscores that the core development of a science mindset in young children relies, in part, on interaction with an array of unique and thought-provoking materials. Our themed Curiosity Carts each hold carefully curated materials designed to provide open-ended explorations. Carts choices are: Science Fiction and Fantasy Play, Design and Build, Making and Tinkering with Natural Materials, Puzzles and Provocations, and the Art of Science.


Campers at Hollingworth delve into our book collection with joy! The Hollingworth collection has been carefully curated to include an array of genres including information texts, ction, and poetry. The collection spans a wide range of reading levels and books with luminous illustrations, thus each camper can always nd new favorites. Each group room has its own library related to their topic. Throughout camp, related chapter books ranging from mysteries to humor are read aloud during those quiet moments in the day.


Every aspect of science is propelled by a vision of the future, research in the present, and the roots of the past. Our days are filled with explorations in the here and now, and through News ashes campers are introduced to visionary works as well historically significant scientists. Future, Present, Past provides our campers with the inspiration for what is possible, a grounding in the past, and the validation that they are the scientists of today.


Often, our campers put things together—from buildings, to art projects, to maker projects and more. Take Apart encourages campers to nd out what is inside of commonly used objects (such as computers, radios, and clocks) Hollingworth educators collect items throughout the year that have distinct, accessible, and safe parts which they disassemble in small groups during camp.


We believe that understanding leads to action and problem solving. Each year educators and campers participate in an authentic community service project.


Makerspaces, in the spirit of Maker Education, maintain a focal point in each of our group rooms. Camper engage their creative thinking while tinkering with a range of carefully collected materials like recyclables, natural ndings, a variety of fasteners and child-safe handheld tools. Camper’s creations are displayed during our Maker Gallery.