Celebrating over ten years of engaging children with summer fun and learning through Penn Museum’s world-renowned collections.
Camp Dates: June 23 – August 22
New this year: offering 9 weeks of camp
Registration opens January 17
New to camp? Please read our Frequently Asked Questions listed below
Campers delight in topics such as mythology, dance, music, art, and customs from both long ago civilizations and modern cultures. Through gallery tours, scavenger hunts, art activities, games, and special guest performances, campers will discover the diversity of humankind, past and present.
|8:00am - 9:00am
||Pre-Camp Supervision (optional, additional fee)
|9:00am – 9:30am||Meet and Greet
Break into age appropriate groups, participate in an icebreaker activity and review camp rules and the day’s activities
|9:30am – 10:30am||Cultural Connections
Explore the weekly theme through interactive talks or gallery tours. On Fridays, campers participate in a museum-wide scavenger hunt
|10:30am – 10:45am||Snack Time (snack provided)
|10:45am – 12:00pm||Creative Connections
Engage in hands-on activities, which may include art-making, theatrics, and more.
|12:00pm – 1:00pm||Lunch and Free-Play
Eat a lunch from home or purchase one from the Museum's Pepper Mill Café. After lunch, children can play with board games or cards (provided).
|1:00pm – 2:00pm||Outdoor Excursions
Enjoy organized, recreational games and free play at a Penn campus field. On some days, come back to the Museum early to finish a project, visit a behind-the-scenes area of the Museum, or meet with a special guest.
|2:00pm - 3:00pm||
Break into age appropriate groups and reflect about the day. Engage in a team-building activity, trivia, and more.
|3:00pm - 5:00pm
||After-Camp Supervision (optional, additional fee)
Week 1: (June 23- 27): Worn and Adorn
People around the world have been piercing, tattooing, painting, and adorning their bodies for centuries. Body modification and what it means is personal and cultural. Explore Penn Museum’s galleries and be on the look-out for necklaces, scarification tools, ear plugs, and body art. Try your hand at a henna design, craft your own jewelry, create your own tattoo, and more.
Week 2 (June 30-July 3): Gift of the Nile
The rhythm of ancient Egyptian life – from building the pyramids to engaging in battle – was defined by the Nile River. Learn how the Nile River played an important role for farmers and gods alike. Engineer a boat, participate in a trade game, and more.
Week 3 (July 7- 11): Digging China
Take a whirl-wind tour of 4,000+ years of Chinese history as you uncover artifacts in a mock dig. Explore themes such as daily life in ancient China, the Silk Road, Chinese calligraphy, and more. Think as archaeologists do as you piece together clues to solve excavation mysteries. Chat with an archaeologist and learn about his/her field work.
Week 4 (July 14-18): When in Rome
From a small town in Italy, Rome grew to become the center of one of the world’s most influential empires. Meet some of Rome’s great rulers, from the cruel to the admirable, and how their great wars were sieged. Learn about home life, gods and goddesses, and commerce as you explore Penn Museum’s collections.
Week 5 (July 21-25): World Mythology
The world’s cultures abound with stories about how humans and creatures, the earth, and the sky all began. Hear how the earth is carried by a turtle or hatched from an egg, how people were once made out of mud or wood, and how the sky emerged from the water. Work with new friends to produce a creation story play.
Week 6 (July 28-August 1): Gift of the Nile
In case you missed it, we are offering this Egypt session again! The rhythm of ancient Egyptian life – from building the pyramids to engaging in battle – was defined by the Nile River. Learn how the Nile River played an important role for farmers and gods alike. Engineer a boat, participate in a trade game, and more.
Week 7 (August 4-8): Heroes, Giants, and Monsters
Heroes, and giants, and monsters – oh my! The old and new worlds alike have recorded myths and true stories about these larger-than-life and fantastic figures. Meet the likes of Polybotes and Paul Bunyan, the chupacabra and the dragon, John Echo Hawk and Mahatma Gandhi. Make a medusa mask, craft a dragon puppet, and more.
Week 8 (August 11-15): Ancient Egyptian Magic
By popular demand, another Egypt week has been added! From attempting to control the weather to ensuring safe passage into the afterlife, ancient Egyptians utilized magic for practical and spiritual purposes. Design a wand with its own special spell. Craft a heart scarab, swabti, and wadjet eye. Discover mummy curses, magical remedies, and more.
Week 9 (August 18-22): Way of the Warrior
Warriors are known for their skills at combat. Still other warriors uphold ideals, defend values and show great courage through peaceful means. Meet the Amazons and the Huns. Learn the codes of chivalry and bushido. Discover contemporary stories of Native American “warriors” striving for equal rights. Go behind the scenes and see some samurai armor before you fashion a helmet and breastplate to take home.
A limited amount of partial scholarships ($100 off tuition) are available until May 1. Please e-mail to receive a scholarship application form:
|Register by May 1:||$255 Museum members per week|
|$275 non-members per week|
|Register after May 1:||$275 Museum members per week|
|$295 non-members per week|
|Pre-camp (8:00am - 9:00am):||$5 per day/$25 per week|
|After-camp (3:00pm - 5:00pm):||$10 per day/$50 per week|
Frequently Asked Questions
I am a Penn staff/faculty member. Do I receive the Member discount?
Only families who enroll at the Household level and above are eligible for Camp discounts. Penn staff/faculty are not automatically members at this level. This is a separate $95 (fully tax-deductible) fee. Learn more about Penn Museum Household membership.
How many campers can enroll in a session? What are the popular themes? Does the camp sell out?
We cap each week to 65 campers. Most sessions sell out each year, so registering before May 1 is encouraged. Our most popular themes each year include the mock excavation week, the Egypt week, and the Classical week. Every year, we get an increasing number of campers who return.
About how many weeks do children attend? Do most children attend all eight weeks? Do you get new campers?
Most campers attend at least two sessions; they likely attend these back-to-back. Each year, several campers attend all eight sessions. About half of the campers return from the year prior, while half of the campers are new each year.
How are the campers divided, or do all ages interact with each other?
Campers are divided into four separate groups of about 16 campers. These groups are based on age and break down (approximately) as follows: 7-8; 8-9; 9-10; 11-13. The group of 7 to 9-year-olds and the group of 9 to 13-year-olds visit different areas of the Museum and interact with each other from 9:30am – 10:30am. During lunch and outdoor play times, the whole camp is together. The camp breaks into the four separate age groups for Snack Time, hands-on components, behind-the-scenes activities, and Camp Recap.
What is the ratio of campers to counselors? Are the counselors high school students?
All counselors are 21 or older, must have had previous experience working with children, and must pass clearances. Camp volunteers, who are teens, act as assistants to the camp staff. Camp staff include eight counselors, approximately three to five volunteers per week, and two camp directors. Two counselors are assigned to about 16 campers each week; therefore, the ratio is about 1 counselor to 8 campers.
Do you offer a sibling discount?
We do not offer a sibling discount. Please consider becoming a Member to receive discounts. Learn more about Penn Museum membership.
My child is 6 years-old. My child is turning 14. Can I enroll him/her?
If your child has completed first grade, you may enroll him/her for Camp 2014. If your child is turning 14 and entering eighth grade, consider a Camp volunteer position for him/her.
My child can no longer attend the camp. Are any of the fees refundable or transferable?
The $100 deposit, due at time of registration, is non-refundable. If you cancel your child’s registration three or more weeks prior to the start date of the session, all tuition and fees (minus the deposit) will be refunded. Refunds cannot be given if you cancel a session two weeks or less prior to the session start date. If your child wants to enroll in a different session, we will be able to transfer all funds paid to a different session (no penalties) if the space is available and if you decide to transfer three or more weeks prior to the start date of the session.
I just registered online. Will I receive additional paperwork? When do I have to make additional payments?
You will receive a confirmation e-mail upon registration. You will receive additional mandatory paperwork, via e-mail, by June 2. These forms must be completed and returned two weeks prior to the start of your child’s camp session. If you create an online account at time of registration, you may log into your account at any time to make additional payments. Balances are due two weeks prior to the start of each camp session. You will receive reminder e-mails to pay balances due.
I’m not sure if I’ll need pre- and after-camp. Should I enroll anyway?
If you think that you may need pre- or after-camp, enroll at time of registration. No payment is needed at time of registration for pre/after-camp. Payments for pre- and after-camp can be paid ongoing during the week of your child’s session.
For questions e-mail
or call 215.898.4016.