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Vacation & Summer Programs

Seven weeks of insect-themed camps for 2017!

Discovery Camp: Incredible Insects

June 26-30: Nature's Recyclers 

July 10-14: Incredible Insects (only week of full day camp)

July 17-21: Magnificent Metamorphosis

July 24-28: Community Dwellers

July 31-Aug 4: Pollinators and Pests

Aug 7-11: Masters of Disguise

Aug14-18: Aquatic Insects

Did you know that humans are not the only ones who recycle? Campers will get a close look at a variety of hard working creature recyclers simply by turning over rocks and logs in our play-yard! We will also explore the art ofcomposting, and how it can be beneficial to both people and the earth.
Incredible Insects (full day week):
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be an entomologist? Entomologists are scientists that study the life and behavior of insects. In this full-day week of camp, we will use some of the tools that these scientists use to take a closer look at a wide variety of critters. Decomposition, metamorphosis, and pollination are just a few of the fun topics we will explore!
Butterflies are probably the creatures that come to mind when you hear the word metamorphosis, but there are many other insects that also go through this amazing process. We will touch on a few of these special insects, learning not only about their life cycles, but about their anatomy and behavior too!
City living isn't just for humans! Ants, termites, and bees also belong to their own complex social communities in which they learn to cooperate for the greater good of their colony. Within each colony, there are many jobs to keep these insects busy: building the nest, gathering food, caring for young, and protecting the group, just to name a few!
Some may find insects to be gross or scary, others may see how beneficial they can be to us and other animals. From honey bees and ladybugs, to mosquitoes and spiders, we will explore the different ways humans and insects coexist.
All kinds of creatures in the animal kingdom use camouflage to aid in survival. Whether they're hiding from predators, or sneaking up on prey, animals use this skill for many different reasons. During this camp week, we will learn about some camouflaging insects and discover why they use the art of disguise in so many cool and wacky ways.
Did you know that there is an insect that can walk on water? And another that builds a protective case around itself out of gravel, sand and twigs? Through storytime, crafts, and games, campers will uncover the amazing insects that inhabit the underwater world.

For kids ages 5 - 8, Half-day 9am-12pm, Full-day: 9am-3pm

Sessions are $125 half-day or $250 for full-day for the week. 20% discount for siblings who sign up.  

Please contact Leila Nordmann for registration.

Click here for an application.


Franklin's Guides
***Applications officially closed early***

Begins June 26, Monday. Ends August 11, Friday.
For students ages 11-15.

***Please note: due to the overwhelming interest of student applicants, we have reached beyond our maximum capacity for this summer program. We apologize for any inconvenience, and encourage you to contact Sabra Anne Snyder to be put on a waiting list for 2018.*** 

About the program
Franklin's Guides is a student docent training program where students are ambassadors of the Museum and represent the spirit of Franklin Fairbanks when he dedicated his collections to the people of St. Johnsbury.  Franklin's Guides discover and research exhibits of their choice, then provide short tours or presentations to the public based on those exhibits.

Guides receive mentoring and support from our education team to practice their research, presentations, and public speaking skills. In return, they offer creative perspectives and new ideas that help us keep our interpretations of the collections fresh. This provides both the students and our visitors a closer look at our displays and collections.

This year you can expect...
We have so many exciting exhibits available this year! With the Museum theme of Insects we are proud to introduce live, observation bee and butterfly houses. We also will be hosting a 'living insectarium,' which will have a variety of insects from stick bugs to praying mantisses. There's also the new Capturing Starlight exhibit, which features amazing astrophotographs of stars and stellar formations. And for students who enjoy enlightening our guests about endangered animals, we now have a new hummingbird and woodpecker exhibit which also includes a secondary display of a variety of rare bird eggs. Let's not forget, it's Cassini's last final months of orbiting Saturn, a great opportunity for planetarium presentations.
We'll also continue our "Friday Field Trips," where students are encouraged to join us for fun, summer adventures in exploration and swimming! While last year we focused on STEM activities and space themed art projects, this year we'll direct our attention towards creating insect houses, offer graphic and web design lessons, 3d printer lessons, creating solar and star gazing viewing models, and more!

Taught by serving AmeriCorps Members
Sabra Anne Snyder is currently serving as our AmeriCoprs Member, from the Lyndon Economic AmeriCorps Program, and directed the Franklin's Guides program in 2016, too. She comments, "We made a new record last year with the number of students accepted into the program. With 16 students on board there were so many exciting and relevant tours made available to our Museum guests such as 3D Printer Demonstrations, Ancient Oceans, Birds of Paradise, Bug Art, Endangered & Extinct Animals, Fish Inside and Out, Rocks & Minerals, Swords of History, Vermont's Bird Calls, and so much more!

How to apply to be a Franklin's Guide

The application process was closed early this year due to the overwhelming student applicants already accepted into the program. If you were in the process of completing the application, we encourage you to contact Sabra Anne Snyder to request to be put on a waiting list for 2018. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, and we appreciate your interest in our student docent training program. 

Contact Sabra Anne Snyder with any questions or concerns. 

What to expect as a Franklin's Guide

Our Guides will spend time on the main floor running existing programs, but also producing their own presentations to the public. They will have the Guides Coordinator, Museum Educators, and experts in various fields as a resource throughout the summer. The Franklin's Guides schedule runs between Monday - Friday, from 10am - 2pm, and students will be expected to commit to at least one day a week to perform presentations. We also have our Friday Field Trips, which are optional, but tons of fun for us to get together for summer adventures!

Fun fact: Did you know that it was Franklin's Guides students who helped built the Lyman Spitzer Jr. Planetarium in 1961? What might you contribute and inspire in your community?