LEGO camp builds computer, science, math skills for area children


Amanda Wilkinson

Aydin Tariq and Cheyenne McFarland play with LEGOs during the free playtime at the Beginning Engineering LEGO Camp on June 24, 2014 in Room 2231 of Old Main. The beginner’s camp allows children ages six to eight to design and build LEGO creations such as cars, catapults and wheelbarrows.

Amanda Wilkinson

Amanda Wilkinson | The Daily Eastern News

LEGO camp inspires kids to use their imagination and go into a field or a career of science, mathematics or engineering.

Each LEGO camp lasts four days long over the course of a week.

Rick Anderson, an associate professor of mathematics and computer science, has been in charge of the LEGO camp for the past five years, three of those years being a part of the general education school at Eastern.

“This year we have nearly 90 students over a course of six different camps,” Anderson said.

Students learn various things depending on the camp they are signed up for but in general they are learning about the science ideas and computer programming.

“One of the important things about the LEGO camp is that it’s fun with activities that the students are familiar with,” Anderson said. “Students regardless of their background are able to start the projects and grow from their experiences.”

They also had partnered with Golden Apple Scholars, a group of students from colleges around the United States who aspire to be future teachers. Golden Apple Scholars benefit from having experience ad from working with the kids and help out with managing the classroom.

Beginning Engineering LEGO camp began June 23 and is going on until June 26.

This camp is to introduce scientific concepts and is for ages 6-8.

“For younger kids the camps help them use their creativity and energy for focusing on scientific concepts,” Anderson said.

LEGO WeDo Robotics camp is an advanced engineering concept like energy and how it’s used along with wind power. It started June 23 and will end June 26 and is for kids 8-10. Intermediate Engineering Lego camp will start June 30 and will end July 3.

Children ages 8-10 can use the Lego materials to invent new things and learn to solve problems.

Young Inventor’s Workshop is for kid’s ages 11-14 June 30 through July 3.

LEGO Robotics Boot camp is preparing students age’s 9-14 for Lego League.

The camp is July 7 through the 10. LEGO League is a competition where students compete against each other to build a useful invention out of Legos. “Students don’t have to participate but if they do they can take what they have learned through LEGO camp,” Anderson said.

Introduction to Computer Programming with Python is the last LEGO camp. It’s for kid’s ages 13-19 and is July 14 through the 17. Technically it’s not a LEGO camp but it builds off the same ideas, Anderson said. This program focuses on science, technology, engineering and mathematics he added.

Danielle Tadlock can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].