Washington, DC has a wide variety of museums displaying extensive collections of artifacts of history, science, art, space and more. Many of these world-class museums have special programs for children. The following museums take this a step further and offer summer camp programs to educate and entertain kids during the summer months. Apply early because these camps can fill up fast.
International Spy Museum
2014 Dates: July 28-August 8, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. No Grownups Allowed! Aspiring KidSpies will hone their tradecraft, learn from real "spies", and hit the streets to run training missions at the International Spy Museum. Develop a disguise for cover, make and break codes, discover escape and evasion techniques, create and use spy gadgets, and uncover the science behind spying. (202) 654-0930.
Smithsonian Summer Camp
K-Grade 8. June 23-August 15, 2014. Kids explore Smithsonian museums, the National Mall, and other regional sites at camps focused on a specific theme such as computer technology, video arts, music & dance, exploration of other lands & outer space, theater, photography, and art. (202) 357-3030.
National Zoo Camps
Summer Safari Day Camps. Grades K-5. 2014 Dates: June 23-August 15. To Be Announced. At the National Zoo, kids will enjoy exciting hands-on activities, craft projects, science experiments, walks through the Zoo, and more.
FONZ Nature Camps. Grades 5-10. 2014 Dates: June 23-August 15. To Be Announced. One- and two-week Nature Camp sessions offer an overnight nature exploration at the Zoo's Conservation and Research Center in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley.
National Building Museum
Artful Architecture Summer Camp. Ages 8-11. Two week sessions. Campers can enjoy design challenges, crafts, field trips, and more while experiencing architecture and design. 2014 Dates: Engineering Challenge, July 7–18, Designing Spaces, July 21–August 1 and City Builders, August 4–15. (202) 272-2448.
History Summer Camp. One week session. 2014 Dates: July 28-August 1. Ages 9-12, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Ages 6-8, 9 a.m. to noon, Children will experience life as it was in Georgetown households about 200 years ago, when our nation's capital was founded. Campers will sample and help cook historic snacks and drinks, perform early American and African American dances, experiment with making music, paint watercolor portraits and sketch from nature, try on period clothing, explore a historic garden, practice Federal manners, play with historic games and more! (202) 337-2288 x222.
Junior Historian Camp. Ages: 9-13. July 14-18, 2014. This is a joint effort with the National Park Service/President's Park and the DAR Museum. Become a part of an elite team of historians and explore objects at the DAR Museum and in the Presidents Park/White House area including hands-on activities, tours and projects. Registration opens in February. (202) 879-3240.
Georgetown Summer History Weeks. 2014 Dates: August 4-8. Ages 4-10, 9 a.m.-noon. Children experience a wide variety of indoor and outdoor activities that bring to life 175 years of American history and teach about the natural environment. Children help cook and sample snacks and drinks of times past, try on period clothing, explore the historic garden, plant their own garden, play historic games, paint watercolor landscapes, go on an archaeological expedition, and much more. (202) 965-0400 x110.
Corcoran Gallery of Art
Camp Creativity. 2014 Dates: June 23-August 15. The program features hands-on art classes for ages 5-13, plus Studio D for ages 14-16. In this series of weeklong workshops, campers explore traditional subjects such as painting, drawing, and sculpture, as well as non-traditional processes such as cartooning, mixed media, and web design. 202-639-1770.
Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) Camps. 2014 Dates: July 14-18, July 28-August 1. Campers will learn to process a crime scene by working hands-on to gather evidence in the fictitious murder of Fred Lawe. Working together as a Crime Scene Unit, they'll take crime scene photographs and search for evidence. They'll also start a case file to keep track of the evidence throughout the week as well as a mock trial on the final day. Programs range from one to five days in length. Campers must be at least 12 years of age or older to participate. See registration details.