Natural Science Summer Day Camp

Teatown Camp brings kids outside to learn about and explore the natural world in our 1,000-acre preserve. In four two-week sessions, our age-specific activities encourage the spirit of discovery!

Registration

Registration is now closed.

Camp update 6/1/2020

Dear Camp Parents,

I have always considered Teatown Summer Camp to be at the heart of our mission. As former Camp Director for 12 years, the parent of a camper and counselor and grandparent of a young camper, I know firsthand what summer at Teatown means for your children in a normal year and the freedom and solace it represents for this year. The decisions we are faced with at Teatown are not taken lightly.

As NY begins the phased reopening process, we at Teatown continue to wait for guidance from NY State and the Westchester County Department of Health on the fate of the 2020 summer camp season. Internal planning by Teatown is ongoing with different scenarios, including modified camp activities (eliminating large group games, reduced use of shared equipment, outdoor meeting areas), reducing the number of camp groups, even preparing for a virtual camp experience should summer camp not occur. Recreation and education falls under phase 4 of the implementation of reopening and is scheduled for July 7th (which effectually eliminates most of the first session of camp). Teatown’s organizational decision on camp is dependent upon these factors.

We understand and feel the anxiety associated with sending your child to camp and the continued uncertainty with opening at all. Our intention all along has been to proceed with opening camp, but only if we are able to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for campers and staff alike. The American Camp Association recently released a Field Guide to Camps on Implementation of CDC Guidelines that we are reviewing to assess Teatown’s ability to safely run camp this summer. As with all camps in Westchester County, Teatown can only run camp when we are issued a permit from the Department of Health. We cannot guarantee that a permit will be issued, or whether additional unanticipated conditions will be imposed. The final decision rests on both the Department of Health and Teatown’s assessment of its ability to provide a safe camp experience.

Teatown would like to have a clear answer for all of you soon. We are just as anxious as you are. We expect to have a decision on opening by June 17, at the latest. Our current refund policy will be extended to June 20. If you feel that you must make alternate plans for your children, we understand. In the meantime, please be patient.

Phyllis Bock
Director of Education

Camp update 5/20/2020

Teatown’s Natural Science Summer Day Camp is filled with the joy of discovery, the excitement of reuniting with summer friends and making new friends and spending days surrounded by nature.

The Teatown staff is working diligently to make camp a reality for campers this summer. The basic elements of camp – friendship, exploration and connections to the natural world will not change. How we accomplish this may be different than in other years. We are making plans to fill the summer with Teatown adventures provided that we can run camp safely for your children and our staff. Teatown will not open summer camp if we cannot do this safely for all concerned.

While we work remotely and await guidance from NY State and Westchester County Department of Health, please be patient. It may take time for us to answer your questions but be assured that we take all your concerns seriously.

Teatown will refund registration fees for camp if we the make the decision to cancel or if NY State decides that camps may not open. Memberships are not refundable.

· In lieu of a refund, consider moving your camp fees forward to summer camp 2021.

That’s okay! We understand that Teatown camp may not be right for you this summer. We hope to see you next year in better circumstances. For now, our current refund policy remains in effect.

Until we have direct guidance form the Westchester County Department of Health, our plans are guided by the recent Centers for Disease Control document:

Teatown’s preliminary plan includes:

  • Daily temperature checks for staff and campers
  • Staggered drop off and pick-up
  • Health screening of all campers at drop-off
  • Daily sanitation of all indoor spaces
  • Limiting time that campers are inside for restroom use.
  • Small group size. Teatown’s camper:counselor ratio is 8:1.
  • Limiting sharing of group use items and disinfection of camp supplies daily.
  • High touch surfaces in the building will be disinfected at regular intervals.
  • Staff who feel sick must remain home.
  • Camp groups will each have their own “remote” camp site to gather.
  • The Nature Center and all buildings will only be open to campers while camp is in session. Trails will be open to the public.
  • Rainy days are stay home days! If heavy rains or thunderstorms are in the forecast camp will not be in session. Teatown would communicate with parents the day before a possible stay-home day.

Our plans are subject to change as mandated by the Department of Health and other government entities.

Camp Mission

Our mission at Teatown’s Natural Science Summer Day Camp is to provide a safe, non-competitive summer haven where kids can be kids. We spend our days learning by exploring, discovering new things about ourselves, each other and the earth, and developing friendships and respect for all living things.

Our camp program has three goals:

  • To instill appreciation and understanding of nature
  • To develop a sense of place and belonging
  • To foster a sense of personal and civic environmental responsibility

Session I

Jun 29-Jul 10

Theme: Animal Antics, Forces of Nature

Session II

Jul 13-24

Theme: Strive to Survive, No Place Like Home

Session III

Jul 27-Aug 7

Theme: Planet Patrol, Eat or Be Eaten

Session IV

Aug 10-21

Theme: Come to Your Senses, Rhythms of Life

Support a child in need

With your donation and the help of other generous families, Teatown will be able to offer camp scholarships to under-resourced families whose children would not otherwise be able to attend our summer camp.

100% of your contribution will go towards providing underserved children with the invaluable experience of connecting with nature through our natural science day camp.

Age Groups

Half Day: For children age 4 or those entering Kindergarten; Full Day: For children entering Kindergarten only

Campers sprout in nature through hikes, hands-on discoveries, and storytelling. Sensory activities include muddy hands and wet feet as we investigate what lives beneath the soil and in the water. Campers also experience their first encounters with Teatown’s animal ambassadors.

Half Day: 9:00 am—12:00 pm; Full Day: 9:00 am- 3:00 pm

For children entering 1st & 2nd grade  Daily exploration of forests, fields, and streams lead campers farther out on Teatown trails. Engage in up-close interactions with the natural community, like frogs, salamanders, and insects. Curiosity is nurtured through mini-experiments, inquiry, and nature play. Half Day: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm; Full Day: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

For children entering 3rd & 4th grade  The spirit of discovery kicks into high gear for 8 and 9 year olds. Campers learn about the delicate balance in the great web of life by exploring, playing games, and participating in mini-projects on sustainability, habitats, food webs, and wildlife stewardship. 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

For children entering 3rd-7th grade, Sessions II and III Take the Teatown camp experience and knowledge and apply it to exciting hands-on projects. Contribute to international and regional citizen science research, and learn fun and easy field research techniques. Campers are bused from the Lakeside Parking Lot to Cliffdale. 9:00 am- 3:00 pm

For girls entering 3rd – 7th grade, Sessions I and IV Engage in activities designed to inspire leadership, teamwork and self-discovery. Explore ways Nature Girls of the past have paved the way for Nature Girls of the present and future. Children are bused from the Lakeside Parking Lot to Cliffdale each day. 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

For children entering 5th, 6th & 7th grade Embark on investigations to learn about our region’s biodiversity. Trek and explore new destinations along managed trails to adjacent county parks. Use technology to navigate and to practice conservation methods. 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

For children entering 8th & 9th grade Build confidence on challenging and vigorous terrain beyond Teatown’s boundaries. Learn about current environmental issues while exploring local ecosystems including rocky mountaintops, salt and freshwater marshes, and the Hudson River. Engage in stewardship projects at Teatown. 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

Registration

NOTE:  To register for the February 5, 2020 New Members with First Time Campers Registration, memberships must be purchased before February 1.

For 2020 camp fees, click here.

The Parent Orientation scheduled for May 27 is postponed while we await further direction regarding the opening of summer camps by the Governor.

To make your experience a pleasant one, we have provided you with a handy checklist, parking letter and orientation letter, which explains camp details such as pick-up/drop-off procedures, meeting areas, staffing, camp attire, lunch and snack, health and safety policies, etc.

Parent Orientation Letter (PDF)

Cliffdale Nature Girls Letter and Earth Stewards Letter (PDF)

Children’s Camps in New York State

Weekly Fee:  7:45 am – 8:45 am  $50/child

Weekly Fee:  3:00 pm – 5:30 pm  $100/child

This is a flat fee per week, per child whether you use all or part of the time.  Children will be supervised by camp staff.  Snacks, board games, craft materials and outdoor play will be available.

Withdrawal from camp prior to June 15, 2020 refunded total fee less 25% administrative costs.  No refund for any reason after June 15, 2020.

Teatown offers a limited number of scholarships to children who could not otherwise attend summer camp. Fill out the Scholarship Form and mail to:

Teatown Lake Reservation
Camp Scholarships
1600 Spring Valley Rd.
Ossining, NY 10562Scholarship Form

Contact Millie at 914-762-2912 x 111 or mdellaquila@teatown.org.

Counselors & CITs

To apply, send the applications below to mpichura@teatown.org or mail to:

Teatown Lake Reservation
ATTN: Maggie Pichura
1600 Spring Valley Rd
Ossining, NY 10562

SENIOR COUNSELORS

Must be 18 years or older, be comfortable with the outdoors and have experience working with children. Applications will be accepted starting January 2020.

Senior Counselor Application

JUNIOR COUNSELORS

Must be 16 years or older and have an interest in children and the outdoors. Applications will be accepted starting January 2020.

Junior Counselor Application

COUNSELORS-IN-TRAINING

Must be at least 15 years old by June 1, 2020. Applications will be accepted starting March 2020.

CIT application