20+ STEM Summer Camps for New Jersey Kids
When you think "summer camp," you might picture canoeing on a lake, playing capture the flag, and eating s'mores by a campfire. But camp can also be about coding, constructing robots, and building with Lego. We've rounded up more than 20 New Jersey STEM camps that promise a summer of fun for budding scientists, engineers, and computer programmers. Find more New Jersey summer camps in our Camp Guide and Full Directory of Listings.
Note that summer camp information for the 2020 season is changing daily. Please click the links to the individual camps below to see which ones are offering programs this year.
STEM Summer Camps with Multiple NJ Locations
Bricks 4 Kidz
Lego lovers ages 5 and up can explore engineering, architecture, and movie-making through building with colorful plastic bricks at Bricks 4 Kidz. Themes include robotics, amusement parks, and space adventures.
Camp Invention encourages creative problem-solving and teamwork.
This week-long program is geared toward kids entering grades K–6. It includes projects such as "Deep Sea Mission," where kids rebuild ships and design underwater equipment, and "DIY Orbot," where campers learn about circuit boards, motors, and gears as they make a bot that tackles fun obstacles. For more information, read our review of Camp Invention.
Challenge Island offers a variety of themes, including Slime Squad, STEAM Girls and Dolls Camp, and Emoji Camp. The 2020 lineup will be available soon; check the website for info.
Code Ninjas Camp
Open to kids ages 7-14, Code Ninjas has several locations across NJ, including Norwood and Westfield. Campers can explore concerts ranging from drones and Minecraft to Robolox and app building through fun games and activities that include coding, game-building, and robotics.
RELATED: Top Summer Camps for NJ Kids
ID Tech camps are held on college campuses throughout New Jersey.
Kids ages 7–17 can learn to code, design video games, engineer robots, print 3D models, and more at iD Tech. The camps are held on college campuses throughout the state, including Seton Hall University, Princeton University, and Montclair State University.
International Ivy offers hands-on experience in robotics, engineering, video game design, and more.
Kids ages 5–15 can choose from more than 60 classes in robotics, science, engineering, digital design, video game creation, math, programming, and more. Classes include Crazy Chemworks, Computing Programming, Civil Engineering, and more. Camps take place in 13 locations throughout New Jersey, including Paramus, Jersey City, and Short Hills.
Lavner Camps – Montclair, Princeton, Cherry Hill
Lavner's specialty camps include computer programming with Python and Java; hands-on robotics with Lego Mindstorms; video game design with GameMaker; and 3D printing and modeling. Kids ages 6–14 can attend camp at one of three locations: Katz JCC in Cherry Hill, Stuart Country Day School in Princeton, and Montclair State University in Montclair.
Kids can get an inside look at security systems, forensics, spy gadgets, and more at multiple locations throughout New Jersey. Other topics include rocketry, robotics, electricity, chemistry, space, nature, and inventing. The camp offers full or half days for campers in Pre-K through grade 6.
This camp brings out the natural engineer in kids. Lego-inspired programs for students in grades K–8 include Adventures in STEM, Minecraft Engineering, and Animal Architects. The classes touch on the basics of engineering, architecture, and physics in a fun, hands-on way and develop problem-solving and critical-thinking skills.
Sylvan STEM Camp
This hot STEM spot offers year-round learning in robotics, coding, Legos, engineering, and math. Special summer camps include coding, engineering, robotics, and algebra topics for kids in grades 1–9. There are 10 Sylvan Learning Centers in New Jersey. Camp offerings vary by location, so check out what's on tap at the one closest to you.
STEM Summer Camps in North Jersey
Buehler Challenger & Science Center – Paramus
Kids from preschool through high school can attend a variety of week-long programs that delve into topics such as rocketry, robotics, and the search for life beyond our solar system.
Big Blue Summer with Zatna – Short Hills
Held on Pingry's campuses, this program prides itself on being at the cutting edge of computer science education. Kids entering grades K–12 can take courses in programming, robotics, app development, electrical engineering, game development, and drones. (Also see location in Basking Ridge in Central Jersey.)
Club Scientific Northern Jersey – Franklin Lakes and Waldwick
Every child is a scientist at Club Scientific, where kids ages 5–12 can choose from 26 different camp themes such as Robotics, Junior Veterinarian, Meteorology, Deep Space, and Edible Science.
D-E 360º Summer Connections – Englewood
Visions of Greatness is the theme of this summer's Discoveries (ages 3–6) and Adventures (grades 1–4) programs at Dwight-Englewood School. Kids will experience and explore different worlds like fantasy, natural, outer space, and more. Middle schoolers (grades 5-9) can choose from fun "a la carte" opportunities to build a schedule that fits their personal interests. Topics include athletics, cooking, debate, and engineering. For older middle and high school students, Academic Enrichment and Scholars programs include academic advancement and college test prep.
Game Camp Nation – Mahwah and Morristown
Kids ages 9–16 can learn to design video games at Game Camp Nation, which offers both day and overnight options in a hotel. Programs range from game creation (ages 9–12) to 3D art and programming (ages 12–16).
Build a magnetic tile city at a Genius Gems camp.
Genius Gems – Millburn
Kids ages 4-12 can participate in morning or afternoon STEM-based projects (or both) with magnetic-tile building projects, robotics, coding, and science activities centered around weekly themes. Campes ages 9-12 will have design time in the new 3D Design Lab. Explore weekly themes like Harry Potter, LEGO Robotics, Pokemon STEM, Slime Lab, YouTube Camp, and more.
The Gifted Child Society – Allendale
Summer Super Stars Camp STEAM day camp is geared toward gifted children in preschool, elementary school, and middle school. Held on the Northern Highlands Regional High School campus, this camp focuses on academics in the morning and recreation in the afternoon. Half-day options are available for pre-K and Kindergarten campers. Children must test into programs before registration.
Little Ivy Academy – Ridgewood, Montvale, Wayne
Campers can build and code robots, video games, apps, and websites; invent electronic gadgets; create special-effects videos; and more. The camp is divided into two sections: Summer Explorers (for kids entering grades 1–2) and RealScience/Express Yourself (for kids entering grades 3–5 and 6–8).
Montclair Learning Center – Montclair
MLC's STEM+ camp is geared toward children entering grades 1–8 and includes four different programs: Code Academy, Maker Lab, STEAM/Engineering, and Chess. There's also a girls-only STEM+ camp for girls entering grades 1–8. Kids ages 3–5 can attend Little Engineers Summer Camp, whose weekly sessions have AM/PM themes such as Dino Fun, Blast Off, Bob the Builder, Doctor's Academy, and CSI.
My Tech Learning – Livingston
Geared toward kids in grades 1-7 with an interest in science and technology, My Tech Learning camp offers activities and lab time in science, technology, recreation, engineering, art, math, and medicine. Campers will be grouped by age (grades 1-3 and 4-7) and can pick from a wide range of activities each day. The 2020 schedule will be available soon; check their website for more details.
NextGen Bootcamp – Hackensack
This computer science education company offers hands-on immersive summer camps for children in middle and high school. Offerings include web development, graphic design, java programming, app development, game design, and more.
Westfield Area Y – Westfield
The Y offers a variety of STEAM-themed specialty camps for kids from age 4 to those entering grade 7. Programs include Roller Coaster Engineering, 3D Video Game Maker, Magic, Python Coding and CSI. Full- and half-day options are available.
STEM Summer Camps in Central Jersey
Big Blue Summer with Zatna – Basking Ridge
Held on Pingry's campuses, this program prides itself on being at the cutting edge of computer science education. Kids entering grades K–12 can take courses in programming, robotics, app development, electrical engineering, game development, and drones. (Also see location in Short Hills in North Jersey.)
Mercer County Community College Camp College – West Windsor Township
Kids can sign up for four-week sessions that include a range of subjects or sample a one-week specialty camp. In the four-week Campus Kids program (ages 7–13), campers can choose six different age-appropriate courses, with options including Jedi Academy; Lost in Space; and Build It, Move It. One-week specialty camps include Science Camp (ages 6–14) and Digital Arts Camp (ages 6–14).
Storming Robots – Branchburg
Open to kids from grades 4-11, Storming Robots is a year-round program with a summer camp component. Elect either a Robotics or Computer Science track, with an advanced Electronic with Robotics option for high schoolers.
Looking for half-day options? Snapology has them!
Snapology Discovery Center – Tinton Falls
LEGO, Robotics, and STEAM/STEM camps are offered in full and half-day sessions for kids ages 5–14. Weekly themes include Pokemon, Snap Robotics, Ocean Exploration, and Video Game Design. Camps are held at various locations across Monmouth County.
Photos courtesy of the camps
Originally published in 2017 and updated since.