Summer Camp

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Are you getting ready to plan your summer? We are in the midst of designing our 2018 STEAM camp: 11 weeks of the creative, fun, inspiring, challenging and diverse options that make Acera’s summer program unique. Our summer program will run from June 11 to August 24, 2018. Registration will open at the end of January. (Also check out our February vacation program!)

We will have all your favorites, from wood shop & engineering sessions with Ms. Marie and Mr. Josh to Songwriting & Music Video Making with Mr. Anthony to Outdoor Survival & Metal Casting with Mr. Mark to Robotics, Toy Hacking & Fashion Tech in the SEEDS Studiolab to the Physics of Projectiles & Flying Machines with Mr. Adam — and, of course, Raft Building! After a successful pilot last year, we will also have some favorites — such as Woodworking Jr. — and new offerings for students 5-7 years old.

Cool new programs we will be offering include:

  • Become Your Own Potions Master (7-10): What we can all learn from Severus Snape — a Harry Potter-inspired week of chemistry experimentation and fun.
  • Pirate Adventures (7-10): From money systems & trade routes then and now to sowing your own pirate outfit to designing your own products to ‘sell’ on those trade routes — a week that combines history, adventure, economics, storytelling, making & design.
  • Biomimicry & Shallow Seas (8-12): Where students will mimic unique aspects of nature to invent and design in a way that could fit environments from all over the globe.
  • Make An Origami Chair With Flair (10-15): Where students can build an Origami-inspired chair out of renewable resources, learning 3D design principles with our resident architect Estee Hill.
  • Build Your Own Pinball Machine (8-12): Where students will build a pinball machine in the wood shop with Ms. Marie in the morning, and design and add electronic components, including lights, in the afternoon with Ms. Alisha.
  • Plus Introduction to 3D Design & Printing, Enchanted Electronics, Make A Musical in Scratch, Space Explorations, The Science of Wood, Physical Computing Clubhouse, Studio Photography, Comedy Productions, Dance: Hip Hop & Choreography, Advanced Paper Engineering & many more!


New this summer: Young Investigator Series (ages 12-17)

You asked, so we made it happen: This summer, we are excited to offer a new track of programs for older Middle School and younger High School Students. Our Young Investigator Series for students 12-17 years old provides access to a few select college-level courses we created based on programs we run during the school year, and building on our school’s collaborations with Tufts, MIT and a new research initiative at Brigham & Women’s. These courses feature cutting-edge science and design experiences, such as:

  • Gene Editing. Students learn how to edit genes in the lab using the revolutionary new technique called CRISPR. This is something so unusual in a middle school that NPR and other media reported about it. Check out this story from the science show The Pulse!
  • Designing Wearables to Track Health & Wellbeing. The skin — a complex, multilayered system that holds our body together and our largest organ — is at the center of this product design course. Students will use design thinking to create wearables that use the skin to detect health and inform us about our wellbeing. They will explore the topic of hacking health and get introduced to physical computing, experimenting with health sensors and trackers. They will design, test, refine and present their products, culminating in a final design review.
  • Introduction to Programming in Virtual Reality. Students learn about Virtual Reality, the technology and the principles behind it, such as optics, displays, tracking and major hardware platforms. They will work in teams to program a VR application. Students will be challenged to collaborate, investigate and create in teams, similar to how app developers work in the real world.
  • A two-week Research Internship with our resident neuroscientist. Students will work on a research project, just like graduate students in a scientist’s lab. We piloted this approach last year and as a result, two students — one current and one former Acera student now in High School — not only created a VR intervention that aims at mitigating fear of public speaking, but will be presenting their work at the Learn Launch conference on Boston in February 2018.

Below, you can find information on our philosophy, and what to expect at our 2018 STEAM summer camp. Write us at if you have questions. Or call us at 781-729-3489.

And make sure you watch this PBS Design Squad episode filmed at one of our wood shop summer classes, for an in-depth view at how students can create at Acera!

About the Acera Summer STEAM Camp
The Acera Summer STEAM Camp is a creativity-based arts and sciences day camp where children can nurture their natural desire to inquire, create, and innovate. With emphases on critical thought, creative problem solving, and integration of content areas, our diverse program offerings inspire all types of learners and thinkers. Our staff consists of professionals with significant experience in the classroom and in their own fields of expertise. Among them are award winners, active research scientists, and working artists. We believe in offering high caliber, authentic, engaging instruction, as much during the summer as during our school year program.

What To Expect
Our STEAM Summer Camp is designed to challenge students of all ages and learning styles. Participants should expect to tackle difficult, enticing problems, individually and in groups. They should anticipate taking the time to incorporate new techniques as they create unique works of art or design experimental protocols or novel engineering solutions.

Who Is Eligible?

  • Children ages 5 through 15 who have never applied to Acera’s school year program.
  • Current Acera day school and after school students, of all ages.
  • Children who have been accepted for the 2017-2018 school year, or waitlisted.

There is no testing or formal application process for our summer program. Participants must be able to work successfully both independently and in group settings.

Discounts will be announced with the schedule and program offerings in late January 2018.

Our summer program will run for 11 weeks, from June 11 through August 24, 2018.

While we have a few full day offerings, most programs run as either morning or afternoon sessions. Morning sessions run from 9 a.m to 1 p.m (including lunch and outdoor recess.) Afternoon sessions run from 12 p.m./noon to 4 p.m.  (including lunch and outdoor recess.)

Students are welcome to mix and match their sessions as fits their interests and schedules, for as many weeks as they like. Enrollment may be for a morning or an afternoon session, or both, in any given week.

Lunch & Snack
Acera STEAM Camp does NOT provide lunch and snacks. Please send your child with a bag lunch, snacks, & water bottle.

A Typical Day

8 am- 9 am Early Drop Off (extra fee)
9 am- 10:30 am Morning Session
10:30 am- 11 am Outdoor Play
11 am- 12 pm Morning Session Continued
12 pm Afternoon-only students arrive
12 pm- 1 pm Lunch and Outdoor Games
1 pm Morning-only students depart
1 pm- 2:30 pm Afternoon Session
2:30 pm- 3 pm Outdoor Play
3 pm- 4 pm Afternoon Session Continued
4 pm- 6 pm Extended Day (extra fee)

Early Drop Off/Late Pick Up
Early drop off (8 to 9 am) and Late pick up (4 to 6 pm) will be available.



Our 2018 summer program will be posted in late January 2018. For a peak at the types of programs we offer, you can browse the 2017 schedule.

(Ages in parenthesis)

Week 7 July 24-28

Morning 9:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

  • Science for Curious Kids: Chemistry (7-9) $375
  • Yoga, Mindfulness & The Arts (7-10) $275
  • Woodshop: Intermediate Woodworking I  (11-15) $325
  • Hamilton & Hip Hop (10-15) $275
  • SEEDS: Designing for Play (7-10) $350
  • Minecraft Build Challenges (5-7) $275
  • Woodshop: Keep it Secret (9+) $325

Afternoon 12:00p.m. to 4:00p.m.

  • Styles, Profiles, Power: Leadership Workshop (12-17) $275
  • Woodshop: Treasure Chest (7-10) $325
  • Drum Camp (7+) $275
  • SEEDS: Food Hacks (11-15) $350
  • Molecular Biology Discoveries (10-15) $375
  • Robotics Explorers (5-7) $300
  • Metal Casting (10+) $350

Full Day

  • Architecture Series: Kinetic Sculptures (11-15) $600


Week 8 July 31-August 4

Morning 9:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

  • Outdoor Explorations: The Science of Rocks (10+) $300 –
  • Music Video Workshop (8+) $275
  • Woodshop: Intermediate Woodworking II (11-15) $325
  • Woodshop: Build a Teepee (7-10) $325
  • Robotics Explorers (8-12) $300
  • SEEDS: Design Your Own Robots (11-15) $300

Afternoon 12:00p.m. to 4:00p.m.

  • Woodshop: Build Your Own Skateboard (10-14) $325
  • Woodshop: Build a Bird House (7-10) $325
  • Chess Camp (7+) $275
  • 360 Video Storytelling (10-15) $350
  • Animal Architecture (7-10) $325


Week 9 August 7 – 11

Morning 9:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

  • MakerArt: Watercolor Challenges (7+) $275
  • Woodshop: Make Your Own Kitchenware (11-15) $325
  • SEEDS: Interactive Storybooks & Electronic Quilting (7-10) $350
  • Architecture Series: Hidden Cities (7-10) $325

Afternoon 12:00p.m. to 4:00p.m.

  • MakerArt: Printmaking (7-10) $275
  • Improv Theatre: Teamwork Meets Imagination (7-10) $275
  • SEEDS: Fashion Tech (7-10) $350
  • Architecture Series: Hidden Cities (11-15) $325

Full Day

  • Live Action Role Play (LARP) (10+) $535
  • Raft Challenge: Design, Build, Race! (10+) $775


Week 10 August 14 – 18

Morning 9:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

  • Hands on Robotics (7-9) $300
  • Theater: Writing a Short Play (11-15) $275
  • Woodshop: Wooden Desk Lamp (7-10) $325
  • Woodshop: Make Your Skateboard (10-14) $325
  • Artwork with Photoshop (8+) $275
  • SSAT Workshop (12-14) $400

Afternoon 12:00p.m. to 4:00p.m.

  • Woodshop: Model Boats (7-10) $325
  • Woodshop: Make Your Own Tools (11-15) $325
  • Adventure Club (7-10) $275
  • Drawing in Virtual Reality (11-15) $350
  • Toy Engineering (6-8) $300

Full Day

  • Live Action Role Play (LARP) (10+) $535
  • Architecture Series: Kinetic Sculptures (7-10) $600
Week 11 August 21-25

Morning 9:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

  • Biology through Play: Systems of the Human Body (7-9) $300
  • Awareness, Agency, Self-Advocacy: The Power of Identity (11-15) $275
  • Woodshop: Treasure Chest (7-9) $325
  • Intro to Podcasting (8+) $275
  • Illuminated Architecture (10-15) $325

Afternoon 12:00p.m. to 4:00p.m.

  • Icky, Sticky, Ewy, Gooey: Messy Science (6-8) $300
  • Woodshop: Marshmallow Crossbows (11-15) $325
  • Lego Robotics (8-12) $300
  • Astronomy (11-15) $300
  • Illuminated Architecture (7-10) $325

Full Day

  • Video Game Design (10-15) $550


Registration for our summer 2018 STEAM camp will open in late January 2018.  

Questions? E-mail us at or call at 781-729-3489.


  • Prices include all materials and lab fees.
  • Discounts will be announced with the launch of the 2018 program.
  • Early Drop-Off is available, beginning at 8 a.m. The cost is $10 per day per child.
  • Late Pick-Up is available between 4 and 6 p.m. The cost is $10 per day per child.


  • We require a deposit of $100 per program a student is registering for. For example, for a morning and an afternoon session, even if in the same week, the deposit is $200. Deposits are due at time of enrollment.
  • Full tuition total is due by May 1, 2018. (After May 1, full tuition is due upon enrollment.)
  • Please note that enrollment is not complete until paid for and approved by Acera Staff.
  • You can pay your deposit or tuition by check, or via our website. If you are uncertain about the deposit/tuition amount you owe, just send us your registration form and we will confirm your deposit due, and total tuition.

Policies & Procedures

  • Once a session is fully enrolled, students can choose to be waitlisted. You can pick another session at the same time and switch should a slot become available; or just be waitlisted.
  • In the unlikely case a session does not fill, we reserve the right to cancel a specific offering. We will inform you at least four weeks ahead of the week the program is scheduled to run. Students will be able to switch into another session or receive a reimbursement.
  • Required paperwork: In addition to the registration form and payment each child will need to submit the following forms before the start their STEAM camp session.
  • Lunch & Snack: Acera STEAM Camp does NOT provide lunch and snacks. Please send your child with a bag lunch, snacks, & water bottle.
  • Removal from camp: Decisions about participation in STEAM camp are made at the discretion of the instructor and the Summer program Coordinator. If a student is not able to participate in a safe and productive way, or if the teach feels that the student is not engaging at a level appropriate for the program, the instructor may ask that s/he switch into a different session, or not return to the program. Refunds will not be provided for students removed from the program due to behavioral issues.
  • Late Fees: A late fee of $10 will be charged for parents who arrive late (after 1pm for AM sessions, after 4pm for afternoon sessions, or after 6pm for late pick up students) to pick up children.