2019 Summer STEM Camp Guide: Chicago Edition

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Summer STEM camps in and around Chicago

Is it possible that all those hours playing Minecraft will lead your child to a lucrative career? With the right guidance, all that screen time may pay off! In partnership with our companion site, STEM Kids Chicago, we’re present with Chicagoland’s most comprehensive guide to STEM and STEAM camps. Whether they are in elementary school, middle school, or high school, these camps can ignite your child’s passion for science and technology or fan the flames that are already burning.

Chicagoans can find STEM fun in the summer at STEM Kids Chicago. Sign up for the STEM Kids Chicago newsletter and get an awesome roundup of STEM events delivered to your inbox twice a month. Summer Camps can contact themakermom (at) hotmail.com for information on enhanced listings in our guide.

2019 Summer STEM Camp Guide: Chicago Edition

Presenting STEM Camp Guide Sponsor

Digital Adventures Join THE top-rated (100+ 5 star reviews) coding for kids studio in Chicago for the Ultimate Adventure digital technology camp. Using computer coding and engineering design principles, your child will learn to build video games, robots, animations, Minecraft Mods, 3D models and movies in our state-of-the-art learning studio. Enter promo code (MAKERMOM) during registration to save 10%. Lincoln Park, Wilmette

Lead Sponsor

iD Tech The world leader in summer STEM education, with over 400,000 alumni since 1999. Programs for ages 7-19 held at 150 prestigious campuses including Northwestern, Loyola, Stanford, NYU, and others. Students build in-demand skills in coding, game development, robotics, and design. Northwestern University (Evanston), Loyola University (Chicago- Rogers Park/Edgewater), GEMS World Academy (downtown Chicago), Benedictine University (Lisle) , Lake Forest College, Judson University (Elgin)

Supporting Sponsors

Noggin Builders EXPLORE! BUILD! CREATE! Noggin Builders one-week camps are filled with fun, hands-on STEM! Curious explorers (preK & K-8th) build creative problem solving and STEM skills with different themes each week. Robotics camp (5th-8th) includes design and coding. Use STEMKIDS19 by April 15 for $25 off any camp for K-8. Northbrook (two locations), Vernon Hills

Bit Space Week-long, project-based learning for children entering 1st through 12th grade at Chicago’s premier maker lab for kids. Campers use power tools, laser cutters, 3D printers, electronics, and computers to design and create something new each week. Lincoln Square, Wilmette

Galileo Innovation Camps SUMMER CAMPS KIDS LOVE At Galileo, we mix day camp fun with hands-on projects in science, art, and outdoors. Supported by the best staff around, kids entering pre-K – 5th grades emerge as confident creators ready to turn their ideas into reality. Enroll by February 28 to save $25 per week. Discount applies automatically at checkout. Arlington Heights, La Grange, Naperville, River Forest, Winnetka, Glenview, Evanston, Deerfield, Chicago- Wicker Park, West Loop, Lincoln Park

STEM Camps Around Chicago

(If you’re looking for all-girls camps, check out our girls-only camp guide!)

Adler Planetarium Camps for kids pre-K through 10th grade. Older students have several exciting Full STEAM Ahead options. Internship opportunities are also available at Adler for high school students. Chicago (Museum Campus)

Alexa Café Endorsed by the Society for Women Engineers, these day and overnight camps for girls teach doing, app development and AI skills to young women ages 10-15. These week-long summer programs are held at prestigious campuses nationwide, including Lake Forest College, Bryn Mawr, Sarah Lawrence, and more.

Argonne National Lab Coding Camp is one week only and limited to 30 high school students. Learn to code from some the best and brightest computer scientists in the nation. In this free five-day enrichment experience, students learn Python, connect with Argonne scientists and program a robot via a Raspberry Pi.

Bit Space STEM Summer Camp Chicago and Wilmette

Bit Space Week-long, project-based learning for children entering 1st through 12th grade at Chicago’s premier maker lab for kids. Campers use power tools, laser cutters, 3D printers, electronics, and computers to design and create something new each week. Lincoln Square, Wilmette

Camp Invention National program serving kids in kindergarten-6 with several sites around the Chicago metro area as well as around the country.

Camp Galileo see Galileo Innovation Camps below. 

Center for Gifted Offers a wide range of exciting STEM and STEAM programs with half and full-day programs available. Project 2016 is just for 6-12 graders; other camps serve kids as young as preK.  Not all sites serve all ages. Barrington, Buffalo Grove, Chicago, Crete, Darien, Elmhurst, Glenview, Naperville, Skokie, Wheaton

Center for Talent Development Run through Northwestern University in Evanston. Enrichment and academic programs for students in grades 4-12. Topics include STEM, civics and more. Overnight (residential) options available.

Chicago Architecture Center (CAC) Details coming soon. Watch their site for more information.

Chicago Botanic Garden Options from pre-K through grade 7, with leadership opportunities for 8-10th graders. Week-long camps for middle school students include chemistry, botany, cooking, and ecology. Glencoe

Codeverse Week-long coding and Maker for kids in grades 1-8 in their unique, interactive studios. Topics include space robots, electronics and circuitry and more. Chicago (Lincoln Park), Naperville, North Shore

College of Lake County (CLC) Program options for elementary schoolers through high school seniors. Topics: rocket science, math, sound design, digital film making, fire science, lasers and more. They also offer fast-paced summer classes for gifted students. Camps are half-day, Monday-Thursday. Grayslake and Southlake

Cook County Forest Preserves From gardening to outdoor survival skills, the Forest Preserves of Cook County offer a range of weeklong summer camps. Age groups and locations vary, so click for details.Chicago Summer STEM Camp Digital Adventures

Digital Adventures In the Ultimate Adventure camp, our digital guides explore their favorite projects. Campers will use the newest and coolest technologies in an interactive and exciting environment. Kids can do it all, from learning how to construct robots, modeling structures in 3D, building mobile applications and websites, creating virtual reality worlds, designing video games, hacking Minecraft, and making movies. Enter promo code (MAKERMOM) during registration to save 10%. North Shore and Chicago (Lincoln Park)

Digital Media Academy  Programs for kids ages 7-17 in game design, Fortnite game mechanics, streaming on Twitch or YouTube, photography, 3D modeling, music production, and more. Loyola University, University of Chicago

Dominican University The Summer Gifted and Talented Program provides a range of STEM programs for kids in grades 2-8. River Forest

Field Museum Tween Camp invites young learners ages 11–13 for hands-on exploration while partnering with scientists and educators in this week-long camp. Internships and volunteer positions are available to high school students. Chicago (Museum Campus)

Chicago STEM Camp Discount

Galileo Innovation Camps SUMMER CAMPS KIDS LOVE At Galileo, we mix day camp fun with hands-on projects in science, art, and outdoors. Supported by the best staff around, kids entering pre-K – 5th grades emerge as confident creators ready to turn their ideas into reality. Enroll by February 28 to save $25 per week. Discount applies automatically at checkout. Arlington Heights, La Grange, Naperville, River Forest, Winnetka, Glenview, Evanston, Deerfield, Chicago- Wicker Park, West Loop, Lincoln Park

Gen-Cyber Camps  Cybersecurity camps for students in K-12 as well as teachers.

Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana Click to read more about their girls-only day camps, like Eco-Engineers, Roller Coaster Excitement, Get Ready to Experiment and Explore Nature (GREEN Girls), and residential camps, like Outdoor STEM Lab and the Engineering Design Challenge.

GreenApple Campus 2019 Chicago camps are TBD

Harper College Click on the “InZone” e-catalog to find an impressive range of tech classes, including many with a manufacturing angle. Stay tuned for 2019 program options. See more like this in the Nuts and Bolts Foundation Guide. Palatine

Heph Ed STEAM Camps where the A stands for Adventure. Camps for kids ages 8-13. Oak Park

iD Tech Camp The world leader in summer STEM education, with over 400,000 alumni since 1999. Programs for ages 7-19 held at 150 prestigious campuses including Northwestern, Loyola, Stanford, NYU, and others. Students build in-demand skills in coding, game development, robotics, and design. Northwestern University (Evanston), Loyola University (Chicago- Rogers Park/Edgewater), GEMS World Academy (downtown Chicago), Benedictine University (Lisle), Lake Forest College, Judson University (Elgin)

Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT, Illinois Tech) Several programs for middle and high school students who are interested in technology, business, architecture, science, engineering, or computers. Some programs can lead to college credit while others are just for fun. Commuters only.

IMSA, Illinois Math and Science Academy Summer@IMSA offers week-long summer science and technology programs for rising 3rd-9th graders in Aurora (at IMSA), Chicago, Belleville and Springfield. They offer additional residential programs in Aurora for 8th and 9th graders. Note that some programs have competitive entry.

JCC Apachi 3rd-7th graders explore life science through hands-on activities and experiments in this full-day camp. Chicago (North Side) , #BigIdea Camp blends technology workshops with traditional camp fun in the spirit of Israel’s high-tech industry. Lincoln Park and Northbrook

Kids Science Labs Science camps serving kids ages 4-12. Half and full-day options. Chicago (Lincoln Park, South Loop), Northbrook, Wheaton

Kids STEM Studio Week-long full-day STEM camps with a nut-free lunch included. Chicago (downtown Lincoln Park), Skokie

KSI STEM Camps TBD Skokie

Moraine Valley Community College The Valley Learning Center in Palos Hills provides a variety of STEM offerings, some for kids up to age 18.

Morton Arboretum Science-themed camps for pre-K-8th graders.

Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) Summer camp in the Fab(rication) Lab: 3D printing, laser cutting, vinyl cutting, computer-controlled milling, digital embroidery and more for students in 5th-9th grade.

National Society for Black Engineers, SEEK Engineering Explorer Summer Camp Week-long program introduces campers to various disciplines of engineering through hands-on projects and meeting with professionals. Runs from 9 am-3:30 pm each day. Lunch is provided. Chicago (click link for exact location)

Next Wave STEM K-8 camp focusing on robotics, airplanes, and drones.

Noggin Builders EXPLORE! BUILD! CREATE! Noggin Builders one-week camps are filled with fun, hands-on STEM! Curious explorers (preK & K-8th) build creative problem solving and STEM skills with different themes each week. Robotics camp (5th-8th) includes design and coding. Use STEMKIDS19 by April 15 for $25 off any camp for K-8. Northbrook (two locations), Vernon Hills

Northern Illinois University STEM Summer Camps An exciting variety of day and residential (overnight) STEM camps at Northern’s DeKalb campus, including options just for girls.

Nuts and Bolts and Thingamajings  National manufacturing camp for students ages 12-16 that may be offered at a community college in your area. The camp gives kids a taste of modern manufacturing. Program may include tours of manufacturing facilities, Computer Aided Design (CAD) experience, entrepreneurship, and more.
Create products with Computer Aided Design (CAD).

Oak Park Educational Foundation BASE Camp kids in elementary school through 8th grade. Topics include textile engineering, origami, architecture, robotics, aeronautics, and more. Oak Park

Oakton Community College 2019 programs TBD, but most likely offered to kids 8-12 including, making 3D video games, Roblox, drone adventures, Arduino, nanotech, Minecraft camps, 3D printing, robotics and more. Des Plaines

Power Up Tech Academy Kids entering grades 1-9 code their own video games, Minecraft mods, animations, websites, and more. Beginner to advanced coders welcome. Daily outdoor recreation. Chicago (Roscoe Village)

Project SYNCERE Stay tuned for 2019 updates. Supporting Youth’s Needs with Core Engineering Research Experiments seeks to prepare the minds and create pathways for underrepresented and disadvantaged students to pursue STEM. They offer a free High School STEM Summer Camp at King College Prep and six, one-week, full-day paid Middle School Summer Camp (financial assistance is available) at Olive Harvey College.

Science and Arts Academy This K-8 private school for gifted children offers a variety of camps with extended day options.

Shedd Aquarium Summer Road Trip Camp for middle school students (grades 6-8) is typically offered only twice during the summer. The week-long program designed to investigate natural environments and culminates with an overnight stay at the aquarium.

Steve and Kate’s Camp This national camp, more STEAM than STEM, now has five Chicagoland locations. Pre-K – 7th graders. Chicago (Andersenville, Lakeview, Lincoln Park, West Loop), Oak Park-River Forest

The Laboratory Check out creatively-themed science and tech (robotics) camps. Serves kindergarten up to about 7th grade, age 12. Chicago (Bucktown)

TinkRworks Week-long, full-day (9-4:30, with extension option) camps for 7-15 year-olds. Themes include Bionic Bicycle, Game of Drones, Remote-controlled Water Wars, and more. Western suburbs

Triton College Summer camps for ages 7-12 with a few options for kids up to 15. Options include model rocketry, programming with Scratch, automotive technology, robotics, and the girls-only GADgET program. River Grove

UIC Engineering Camps One- and two-week sessions for middle and high school students. Details TBD. UIC Campus

Wishcraft Workshop Kids 8-12 build design, engineering and maker skills in the week-long Spoolhouse Rock program where they design and construct a garment from scratch. Programs for younger kids, too. Chicago (Lincoln Park)

2019 STEM Camps for Girls in and near ChicagoLooking for camps just for girls? We got your back! Check out our All-Girls Chicago STEM Camp Guide.

Summer STEM camps in and around Chicago

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