Summer Camps Continue to Provide Children with Social and Academic Enrichment at CSUN

CSUN's summer camps aim to provide children with social, athletic and academic opportunities.

CSUN’s summer camps aim to provide children with social, athletic and academic opportunities.

California State University, Northridge’s youth summer camps will return this June for social enrichment activities that can guide children in critical thinking, athletics, problem solving and innovation, leaving them with a memorable summer experience.

Registration is now open for all summer programs throughout the CSUN campus.

Summer Academic Program for Elementary School Students (SAPESS) will be offered from June 17 through July 19. This program is for incoming grades 1 through 5 and has been in operation for 37 years. SAPESS stresses critical thinking, self-reliance, problem solving and innovation while having fun.

“These programs are great for children because they also expose them to being on a college campus. It is a great way for them to have a positive experience at a university and to get them thinking about their future,” said Jill Frieze, one of the program’s coordinators.

The daily enrichment includes science, math, language arts and art classes taught by certified teachers. All students are under the full-time direct supervision of teacher assistants, who are either certified teachers, education graduates or teacher assistants in LAUSD schools. Using weekly themes, the SAPESS curriculum is aligned with the California State Standards and is taught using hands-on, activity-based lessons. If parents wish to add an elective class, SAPESS offers the following extended classes:

  • Robotics, which teaches students in grades 4 and 5 to build operational robots.
  • Computer Coding and Simple Machines for grades 2 and 3 helps children learn how to build simple machines and create their own computer games from scratch.
  • Science class teaches science concepts through hands-on experimentation.
  • Art instructs children how to create projects using a variety of media and incorporates concepts such as design, color, etc.

To register for SAPESS, visit SAPESS offers a limited number of scholarships for qualifying families, which reduce the tax-deductible fees by 50 percent. To find the information for financial aid, go to the website and click on the “FAQs” link under the Parent link. The Summer Academic Enrichment Program (SAEP) for middle and high hchool kids is also operated by the Michael D. Eisner College of Education.

For children age 4 to 11, CSUN Sunny Days Camp is offering activities such as traditional swim lessons, rock climbing and dance classes for full- and half-day program offerings.

“Sunny Days Camp is a fun day-camping experience with a good ratio of staff to campers,” said Jeremy Hamlett, manager of operations and facilities planning. “All of our staff are present or former CSUN students, or child development majors who plan to work with kids.”

The full-day camp will be offered for nine weeks and the half-day program for five weeks, to coincide with the SAPESS camp — an option for children who want to stay after 12:30 p.m. (by concurrently enrolling in SAPESS and Sunny Days). Parents and youth can attend an open house on June 5, where registered campers can visit the camp and meet the staff. For 12- to 14-year-old teens, a program called Skills of Leadership will be offered, where campers will work as junior counselors and hone their personal developmental skills throughout the summer. They also will have separate field trips on Thursdays. During the last week of camp, there will be a talent show, a week-long competition and a carnival Aug. 9.

“This is a great program for on-campus parents, and pick-up and drop-off is easy,” Hamlett said. “We’re an open camp, so parents can see their kids participate in activities and have lunch with them.”

For information and to register, call (818) 677-3617 or visit the Sunny Days website.

For youth looking to begin or expand their athletic experience, CSUN Athletics is offering baseball, tennis and basketball camps this summer that will include professional instruction by the Matador coaching staff and current Matador student-athletes. Athletics camp will be offered for three sessions, from June 24-27, July 8-11 and July 22-25.

“CSUN Baseball camps are designed with fun and learning in mind,” said Riley Goulding, assistant baseball coach and camp coordinator. “We strive to provide a great environment for both beginner and advanced youth baseball players in the Valley.”

For students interested in Athletics camps this summer, register online for tennissoccer or baseball programs.

CSUN’s Teenage Drama Workshop (TADW) offers an unforgettable summer experience for teenagers interested in theater arts. This 62-year-old program operates as a conservatory-style experience for youth looking to enhance their theater arts skills. Teens will appear in one of two productions, in “Disney’s Freaky Friday Jr., A New Musical” or “Jason and the Argonauts.”

To apply for the Teenage Drama Workshop, visit

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