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Natural History
Students and teacher in Egyptian galleries

Take a trip through time at the natural history museum! Visit the dawn of time, and schedule a side-trip to the Jurassic to study the bite force of awe-inspiring dinosaurs. Fast forward to the kingdom of pharaohs to get a feel for daily life in ancient Egypt. Keep moving forward and unearth the history of the earliest human habitation in North America on an extended day trip to Meadowcroft Rockshelter.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Meadowcroft Rockshelter. Museum pick up on field trip day will be at 5:30 p.m. Late afternoon snack will be provided.

Last day to register is June 7, 2017.

Kids looking at insect specimens through magnifying glass

Spend a week learning about all the amazing creatures living in your backyard! Explore nearby Schenley Park looking for insects, amphibians, and reptiles. Hunt for insects in leaf litter, and go on a mammal scavenger hunt. Conduct plant pigment experiments and fruit and vegetable dissections. Uncover micro mysteries using magnifiers and a video microscope.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is June 7, 2017.

Kids touching fossil replica

This camp is sold out. Sign up for the wait list. You will be contacted if space opens up.

Get an up-close look at Dinosaurs in Their Time, find out where those big bones came from, and learn all about prehistoric animals. Study specimens, make fossil casts, and dig for replica bones like a real paleontologist. Meet the creatures that roamed with the dinosaurs—early mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and insects.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is June 7, 2017.

Students posing with Reindeer diorama

Examine social practices across space and time using the cultural collections of our museum. From ancient Egyptian pharaohs to Tlingit clan leaders, investigate the meaning of living large in different cultures. Delve into experimental archaeology through design challenges such as mixing rock art pigments and using stone tools. Recreate baskets, pottery, henna tattoos, and more. Unearth the history of the earliest human habitation in North America on an extended day trip to Meadowcroft Rockshelter.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Meadowcroft Rockshelter. Museum pick up on field trip day will be at 5:30 p.m. Late afternoon snack will be provided.

Last day to register is June 7, 2017.

Kids touching fossil replica

Get an up-close look at Dinosaurs in Their Time, find out where those big bones came from, and learn all about prehistoric animals. Study specimens, make fossil casts, and dig for replica bones like a real paleontologist. Meet the creatures that roamed with the dinosaurs—early mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and insects.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each afternoon.

Last day to register is June 7, 2017.

Group of kids running outside the Carnegie Library in Oakland

Learn techniques in survival and orienteering that will help you find your way around. Use your navigation skills to geocache and discover treasures in and around the museum. Put your newfound skills to the test as you construct a natural shelter, blaze trails, and build a campfire on an extended day trip to Powdermill Nature Reserve, the museum’s environmental research center.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Powdermill Nature Reserve. Museum pick up on field trip day will be at 6:30 p.m. Late afternoon snack will be provided.

Last day to register will be June 14, 2017.

Kids touching fossil replica

Get an inside look at paleontology from the gigantic Diplodocusto the tiny Archaeopteryx. Cover land, sea, and sky while searching for unusual pterosaurs, ichthyosaurs, birds, and mammals. Peek into PaleoLab where museum scientists work on fossils every day. Go on a dinosaur dig. Make a mask of your favorite prehistoric beast, and move like a dinosaur in a special relay race.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is June 14, 2017.

Kids looking at insect specimens through magnifying glass

Adventure into the Land of Fairytale Science! From dragons to mermaids, explore curiosities from our favorite fairytales, and search for their connections in the natural world. Create your own dragon drool, discover the hidden “magical” properties of gemstones, and bring your own fairytale to life. End the week by dressing up as your favorite fairytale character!

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is June 14, 2017.

Students and teacher in Egyptian galleries

From basic biology to high-tech sportswear, investigate how animals and people adapt to extreme environments. Find out how your own sensory systems and reflexes measure up to animal survival instincts. Improve your outdoor adventuring skills by learning about basic first aid, nutrition, and hydration needs for camping and hiking. Create a water purification system, and concoct the perfect trail mix for a day hike. Compare traditional fishing and hunting techniques across cultures.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Powdermill Nature Reserve. Museum pick up on field trip day will be at 6:30 p.m. Late afternoon snack will be provided.

Last day to register is June 14, 2017.

Kids looking at insect specimens through magnifying glass

Grab a magnifying glass, and explore the world of bugs! Learn how insects move, crawl, walk, and fly. Conduct experiments with real bugs. Investigate how different critters make sounds, and test the strength of bess beetles. Use microscopes to take a closer look at colorful butterfly wings. Hold a miniature “Pitts-bug Marathon” to test the speed of different insects. Venture outside to uncover nearby insect habitats. Build your own insect model and bug house to take home.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Hi Fives camps are recommended for kids who have finished a year of full-day kindergarten or full-day child care.

Last day to register is June 21, 2017.

Students studying insects in lab setting

This camp is sold out. Sign up for the wait list. You will be contacted if space opens up.

Roll up your sleeves, and prepare to get messy! Make mystery solutions that fizz, pop, and explode. Discover why objects glow in the dark, and make your own fluorescent crystals. Try sticky experiments by making sweets on a field trip to a culinary classroom. Inquire into mysteries of the mind, and dissect a sheep brain. Learn forensic science techniques, and use them to solve a museum mystery.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Steel Center Vo-Tech Culinary Classroom. Campers will return on field trip day in time for normal pick up at 3 p.m.

Last day to register is June 21, 2017.

Kids closely studying rock

Dig deeper into the earth with an investigation into rockin’ geology. Examine rocks, gems, minerals, and fossils in the lab and throughout the museum. Take a rock walk in Schenley Park, and start a take-home collection of rocks and minerals. Create an experimental gallery modeling the effects of magma on landforms. Observe lava as it flows into the ocean, and demonstrate how continents have shifted in the past.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Kids closely studying rock

This camp is sold out. Sign up for the wait list. You will be contacted if space opens up.

In a galaxy far, far away… is life really that different? Find out by comparing the plants, animals, and biomes of the Star Wars universe with those of our own world! Discover what makes a "tauntaun" so well suited to its habitat, and design your own out of this world creature. Investigate the science of "Cloud City" and even examine real life crystals to determine which ones would give your "lightsaber" your favorite hue. Don your Jedi gear—it’s time to discover the science behind the fantasy!

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is June 21, 2017.

Students posing with Reindeer diorama

This camp is sold out. Sign up for the wait list. You will be contacted if space opens up.

Turn playing with food into serious science. Examine the chemical structures of sugars and starches, and test variations across global cuisines. Mix up tasty solutions and suspensions as you learn about the chemistry of ice cream. Experiment with gases to make bread and root beer. Put cooking to the test on a field trip to a culinary classroom where you’ll make a sweet treat.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Cost includes field trip day to Steel Center Vo-Tech Culinary Classroom. Campers will return on field trip day in time for normal pick up at 3 p.m.

Last day to register is June 21, 2017.

Students posing with Reindeer diorama

This camp is sold out. Sign up for the wait list. You will be contacted if space opens up.

Investigate the intricate balance of the human body. Perform bone and heart dissections, and become a cardiologist as you conduct a mock coronary bypass on a real heart. Discover how medicine and disease have evolved throughout history by exploring surprising medical evidence in fossils and ancient skeletons. Find out what it’s like to be a real medical student on a field trip to the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s training facilities.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Students working on the floor of gems and minerals galleries constructing crystal forms

We’ll take the physical challenge! Combine trivia, science, teamwork, and games in this natural history camp inspired by one of our favorite classic game shows. Visit a different realm of the museum and its collection each day. Conduct experiments, and meet scientists. Grow what you know, and compete against your camp friends in daily challenges. If you love to get messy, dream of running obstacle courses, and don’t mind a little slime, this is the camp for you!

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Camp does not meet on July 4, 2017.

Last day to register is June 28, 2017.

Students working on the floor of gems and minerals galleries constructing crystal forms

Find the hidden treasures throughout our very own Temple of Knowledge! Uncover the truth behind the legends in this camp inspired by the classic 90s game show and recent film. Learn about ancient civilizations as we examine museum artifacts. Try your hand at tooling metal. Create your own legend explaining a scientific phenomenon. Take on challenges that will test your knowledge, reasoning skills, and teamwork.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Camp does not meet on July 4, 2017.

Last day to register is June 28, 2017.

Students posing with Reindeer diorama

Find out how disease outbreaks happen as you take on the role of a CDC investigator. Learn about virus transmission and how to identify “patient zero.” Learn what steps can be taken to prevent the outbreak of real and fictional diseases—from chickenpox to zombie-ism. Study the difference between viral and bacterial outbreaks and how to fight them. See if you have what it takes to survive a pandemic outbreak!

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Camp does not meet on July 4, 2017.

Last day to register is June 28, 2017.

Students browsing touch screen while in front of wildlife diorama

Catwoman, Spider-Man, and Wolverine—it’s no wonder these larger-than-life superheroes are inspired by amazing creatures. Animals and insects, both large and small, have adapted to develop incredible powers. Explore extreme abilities including super speed, super strength, poison gas, and even invisibility. Learn about the most dangerous animals on the planet, and create your own animal superhero to see if you can save the day!

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning. Price includes cost of field trip day to Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium. Campers will return on field trip day in time for normal pick up at 3 p.m.

Last day to register is July 5, 2017.

Students studying insects in lab setting

From cavemen to chemist, explore how science has evolved through the ages. Examine chemistry of the elements: fire, earth, air, and water. Learn and test fire-making techniques, create healing elixirs from honey, and conduct experiments to uncover the key components of successful cleansers. Delve into the science of ancient cave art as you experiment with binding pigments to make paint.

Campers will meet at the Portal Entry near the parking garage each morning.

Last day to register is July 5, 2017.