Children at Camp Invention create tracks for the Optibot ™ — a small self-driving robot that senses changes in light.

Camp Invention, a nationally recognized, nonprofit summer enrichment camp program, is coming to Arthur Boring Civic Center, 2406 W. Reynolds St. in Plant City and Valrico Lake Advantage Academy, 11306 Boyette Rd. in Riverview Monday to Friday, June 4-8.

It is the only nationally recognized summer program focused on creativity, innovation, real-world problem solving and the spirit of invention.

A program of the National Inventors Hall of Fame (NIHF), in partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, it challenges children in Grades K-6 to find their ‘inner inventor’ by learning the process of innovation. Camp Invention promotes science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning; builds resourcefulness and problem-solving skills; and encourages entrepreneurship in a fun and engaging environment. 

“The Camp Invention experience is that invention is for everyone, and it is pure joy, collaboration and excitement,” said Radia Perlman, inventor of Robust Network Routing and Bridging and 2016 NIHF Inductee. “This is a lesson we should all hold for our entire lives.”

Hands-on activities include: 
* Optibot™: Campers will launch into the future with their own Optibot – a small self-driving robot that senses changes in light. 

* Robotic Pet Vet™: Throughout this module, campers nurse their robotic puppy back to health and design and build dog parks as they hammer out ideas for the best park attraction. 

* Mod My Mini Mansion™: Campers will dream up and design their very own futuristic smart home filled with gadgets, LEDs, technology and innovations.

* Stick To It™: Campers will invent something new every day as they explore what it is like to be a physicist, engineer and entrepreneur. Young innovators will invent, make and craft solutions to real-world challenges by building their own prototypes and discovering that anything is possible. 

At the end of the program, each camper will bring home two personalized robots.

“We learn by experiencing things, not by simply studying things and repeating what we study,” said Federico Faggin, inventor of the microprocessor and 1996 NIHF Inductee. “Providing an environment where children can actually learn about inventing and intellectual property, in a climate of play — that’s an unbelievable thing.”

 Regional program sponsors include DuckTape® brand duct tape.

All local Camp Invention programs are facilitated and taught by certified educators who reside and teach in the community. For more information, visit campinvention.org.