The GET SMArT (“Get Engineering, Technology, Summer Music, Arts and Theatre”) program in Northport-East Northport kicked off the week of July 5 with students in grades 3 through 7 immersing themselves in various art, music and STEM offerings. The newly expanded district summer camp provides students with opportunities to explore all of their passions in one setting, from orchestra and musical theatre to robotics computer aided design, amongst others.
Located at Northport High School, GET SMArT Campers are able to participate in the four week program which includes half and full day options along with an a la carte STEM menu. During the initial week, orchestra students could be found learning new songs and challenging their musical skills, while young engineers engage with CAD software, build solar powered model race cars, and construct and program VEX robots.
With over 370 students enrolled, students are taking more than a combined 1,200 courses while discovering the artist or musician within, finding their voice on stage, and diving into the world of coding, robotics, game design, and woodworking! In addition to the educational benefits of the program, students have an opportunity to meet students from other Northport-East Northport schools, providing some much welcome social interaction after a challenging school year.
Program coordinator and music teacher Michael Sussino said “The overarching goal is to reignite that spark and show students this is a place where they can be together, where they can think, they can learn, they can problem solve constructively, and they can have fun while they’re doing it.”
David Storch, chairperson for science, technology & engineering added “We also want to ignite interest for the first time. We have current grades 3, 4, and 5 experiencing computer science, coding, programming and robotics and engineering for the first time, and my hope is they will discover a passion that they didn’t even know existed.”
“It doenst matter if you’re an academic learner, an artist or an athlete, every student can achieve success in any one or more of these programs. Young GET SMArT campers will develop self confidence, resilience, and grit to persevere all aspects of school within and beyond the classroom; that’s transformational and can light a spark which will last throughout their entire education,” he added.
“When you consider how excited the staff are, how excited the parents are and how excited the kids are, it’s been a great first week,” said Mr. Susinno.