• 73°

Camp stokes excitement in students

This summer, 4-H is having a STEM camp for kids ages nine through eighteen, highlighting the benefits of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. While learning about these during the school year may be cause for snores and groans to escape the mouths of young students, the ones who voluntarily come to these summer camps have an obvious affinity and excitement for the topics.

The point of the summer camps is to show how STEM can be fun through application and hands-on interaction. Sure, numbers and concepts may be boring on paper, but when shown through the lens of a robotics competition or rocket launch, with a little effort they can be a lot of fun.

That is what these camp-going students realize. Whether they have a natural affinity for understanding a certain aspect of STEM or an urge to learn more about it, they want to do as much as they can. Camps like these are great because it allows them to flex their mental muscles in a fun way, stoking the fire of wonder and interest that can one day turn into a lifelong career.

It is great what 4-H is doing with these camps, and everyone in the Greater Valley Area should take note. Encouraging a child to pursue and explore an area of study that interests them is one of the greatest things one can do for their future.

This isn’t specific to STEM, either. If a younger student is excited about something, whether it’s school related or otherwise, it is important for the adults in their life to nourish that excitement, introduce them to related topics and send them down avenues that highlight their interests and can lead to a career or lifestyle.

The 4-H STEM camp could be a student’s first step on the road to creating or doing something great. The overall lesson the camp teaches is that exploring one’s interests in a fun way can be extremely beneficial. Extending that mantra into the rest of a student’s life can be even more so.