For 30 years, the National Inventors Hall of Fame® (NIHF) has provided STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) enrichment opportunities for students across the country. Using valuable insights from our world-changing Inductees, over the years we’ve prided ourselves on offering educational experiences that help children develop a passion for innovation.
Each year, our flagship summer program, Camp Invention®, offers an all-new curriculum specifically designed to keep children engaged. Because campers explore STEM concepts through hands-on activities and projects they work on throughout the week, often they have so much fun that they don’t realize they’re learning.
Studies have shown that children not only enjoy this active approach to learning, but that it is more effective than traditional passive learning styles. To develop the crucial 21st-century skills campers will need to thrive in the future, they must learn by doing. Our education team understands this, and spends 20 months developing each new Camp Invention curriculum.
The lasting impact of Camp Invention
Their hard work is clearly paying off, as a recent study conducted by Dr. John Falk, founding director of the Center for Research on Lifelong STEM Learning at Oregon State University found that attending just one week of Camp Invention “resulted in statistically significant improvements in creativity, STEM interest and the ability to use and apply problem-solving techniques.” Additionally, Dr. Falk found that students who attended Camp Invention multiple times over four years showed even greater levels of STEM interest, creativity and problem-solving aptitude when compared to students with no (or limited) previous Camp Invention experience.
Dr. Falk’s research shows that the positive effects of Camp Invention endure long after the program is over, and that repeat attendance can produce even greater increases in creativity and problem-solving skills. By using free-choice learning techniques, which give children the freedom to learn about topics they’re naturally interested in, we believe Camp Invention has the power to give children a newfound enthusiasm for STEM learning.
Finding an innovative role model
Another key benefit of attending Camp Invention is that it connects children with our inspirational Inductees. This exposure to innovation has been shown by Opportunity Insights to greatly increase the likelihood that children will become innovators when they grow up. This finding is incredibly important, as it represents an effective way parents and educators alike can begin improving the troubling lack of diversity found in many STEM fields. If children are able to identify with STEM role models from an early age, they can see what they too are able to achieve.
Learn more about Camp Invention
To learn more about Camp Invention’s all-new 2020 program, Elevate, and find a location near you, we invite you to visit our website.