Design + Build Camps for Kids and Teens
Summer camp at Bit Space is week-long, project-based learning for children entering 1st through 12th grade. Each week, we introduce a set of tools, techniques, and materials to each of three age groups. Using the week’s theme as a starting point, campers work individually, in small groups, or as a team to create something that explores, expresses, and expands upon their skill and creativity.
About Bit Space
Bit Space is Chicagoland’s premier maker lab for kids and teens–a place where they can learn to use real tools to build real things. Students work with our guides to learn how to use hand tools, power tools, electronics, robotics, 3d printers, laser cutters, CNC milling machines, computer modeling and design software, computer game development software, virtual reality, and new media to design and build just about anything. We try to live up to our goal of inspiring and guiding the next generation of inventors, entrepreneurs, and problem solvers by teaching kids and teens to be producers rather than consumers of technology. Our guides are experts from the fields of architecture, design, engineering, and computer programming.
Step 1: Register or Log in
Tap on the My Account link at the top of the page to log in or register.
Step 2: Fill out the Waiver
Once you’ve logged in, you can check out your My Account page to look at Orders, Bookings, Addresses, and more!
Before you can sign your child(ren) up for any Bit Space events, you must sign the waiver and provide information on students and contact persons.
Step 3: Choose a Location and Age Range
Registration for Summer Camp 2019 is not yet open. Please sign up for our newsletter below for all the latest updates, including any announcements about Summer Camp 2019!
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
Summer camp at Bit Space is week-long, project-based learning for children ages 6-18. Each week, we introduce a set of tools, techniques, software, and materials to three different age groups. Using the week’s theme as a starting point, campers work individually, in small groups, or as a team to create something that explores, expresses, and expands upon their skill and creativity.
- Full-day, one-week camps (Monday-Friday)
- 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
- Monday – Friday
- Before care available: 8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
- After care available: 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
- No lunch provided; bring a nut-free lunch and snack
- Focus on fun and skill building
- Unique theme each week
- Free construction time each day in addition to themed projects
- Campers get to bring home what they make
- Parents are invited to end-of-week presentations
- Divided into three age groups: 6-9, 9-12, and 12+
- Camps offered at two locations: Lincoln Square and Wilmette
Safety is the number one priority at Bit Space. To that end, we make sure to have a better than 10:1 ratio of campers to guides, even smaller ratios in the woodshop. No campers are ever left unattended when using certain tools, such as jigsaws. Campers are given safety and usage training on all of our tools, and we have procedures in place to ensure safety throughout the shop (see our Code of Conduct form for more information). When using tools, campers will always be required to wear eye protection, and we have ear protection available as well.
By dividing our campers into age groups, we are able to equip our campers with tools, technologies, and techniques in a structured environment appropriate to their developmental level. Each week provides a theme that unites the imaginations of all of our campers, yet each age division will engage with that theme in different ways. All levels emphasize learning-through-doing in a social environment. Campers work on projects that bridge the physical and digital world and end with an exhibit of their work each Friday!
Our youngest campers learn to safely and effectively use basic hand tools and power tools in our woodshop, become familiar with 2D design software and laser cutting, and integrate basic circuitry and motors into their projects. Campers create individual projects in a group setting.
Our intermediate campers take the next step in their “making” journey by being introduced to programmable electronics (Arduino), 3D modeling software (Blender), 3D printing, video game development (Unity 3D), and video & sound editing software. Campers work in small groups and collaborate to re-imagine The Cube every week.
Our campers entering their junior high and high school years will determine how they will engage with the week’s theme and choose where and how they will make their contribution to Friday’s exhibition. There are very few restrictions as to which tools and technologies they can use. Higher level craftsmanship in physical construction, virtual reality technology, new media, and real coding skills are all on the table. These campers are paired with our most experienced maker-educators to maximize their potential.
The morning of the first day of camp will include activities to help the guides and campers get to know one another. The campers will go through our “stations” where they will learn how to safely and effectively use the tools in our shop. We will discuss Bit Space rules and expectations and brainstorm ideas for the week’s theme.
On the final day of camp each week, parents and friends are invited to come to our end-of-week presentations at 3:00, so our campers can show off their fantastic creations.
Registration, Payment, and Cancellation
Registration for all camps can be found on our website. Up through April 30th, a 50% deposit is required to register for camps. Full payment is due by April 30th. Bit Space will offer refunds if we receive a written cancellation notice prior to April 30th, but a cancellation fee of $100 will be incurred. After April 30th, full payment is required for registration. No refunds will be given after April 30th. We do not issue full or partial refunds during the summer for campers who miss a day or more due to illness or other factors.
Drop Off and Pick Up
Campers should be dropped off between 8:50 and 9:00 each morning, and picked between 4:00 and 4:10. Parents will automatically be charged regular before care or after care prices for early drop off or late pick up. For campers who are not picked up by 6:00 p.m., a $50 convenience fee will be charged to parents, and we will get in touch with emergency contacts unless otherwise notified.
Before Care and After Care
If you need before care or after care you can add that on at the time of registration or call us at any time if you’d like to add on those services. Before care starts as early as 8:00 a.m. and is $10 per day, and aftercare lasts until as late as 6:00 p.m. and is $20 per day.
Lunch + Snacks
Lunchtime at Bit Space will generally fall between noon and 1:00 depending on the number of classes and the morning activities. Eating a good breakfast is vital to the attention and energy needed for great making. Please send your child full and ready to make. Bit Space is nut-free. Please pack lunches and snacks for your children that are free of peanuts and tree nuts. Bit Space allows time for snacks during the day.
If your child is showing signs of illness or has a fever, we ask that you strongly consider keeping the child home for that day of camp. We will notify the listed caregivers and request an early pickup for any camper who has a fever or is clearly ill during the camp session. Please be sure to let our staff know if your child has any medical issues of which we should be aware.