Physics and astronomy summer camp

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J. Lamminpaa , J. Tuura
University of Turku, Finland
Forum 2014 Helsinki
WG1 : Inspiring the young

Department of physics and astronomy at university of Turku has arranged summer camp for children aged 10 to 12 for several years. Last three camps were offered via Chil- dren’s University (Lasten yliopisto) of university of Turku. Camp is a day camp, so that children spend the evening and night at home. Annual camp is organized at the very beginning of June and the pressure to increase the amount of more organized camps is increasing. Day camp for physics and astronomy has ascended to the most popular camp organized by Children’s university.

The aim of the camp is to build your own rocket which is launched at the last day during a visit to University’s observatory at Tuorla. The rocket will be powered with steam, pressure or electromagnetic induction. Before children start to build their rockets, they are introduced to use these ideas when they build steam boat and air pressure car of their own. While aim is to build rocket the idea behind is to let children’s imagination free when they plan their vehicles or solve problems experienced during construction.

Though camp has a strong background in physics, almost half of the camps program includes outdoor activities, so that campers have chance to get to know each other and to make new friends. This has developed positive image of the camp and the physics and astronomy department as well and hopefully for physics as an enjoyable subject.