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Summer's Coming: ACE Camp Programs Are Cool Way to Learn

Written by William Schmitt on Friday, 13 April 2012.

Offerings at Several South Bend Area Schools Are Hands-On Fun

Students entering grades 2 through 8 in the South Bend and Elkhart areas will have expanded opportunities this year to extend their learning into the summer months through a partnership of local Catholic schools and the University of Notre Dame's Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE).

The "Catholic Schools Summer Camp Educational Program," co-sponsored by the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend and ACE, will offer day camp-like learning experiences at five schools—two more than last summer. Students are being invited to register at St. Jude Elementary School in South Bend and at St. Vincent de Paul School in Elkhart, in addition to last year's lineup of South Bend schools: St. Adalbert, St. Anthony de Padua, and Our Lady of Hungary.

Each school will offer two sessions, one spanning three weeks in June and the other spanning three weeks in July. Different grades will have different focus areas, generally covering math or language arts. The sessions are mornings only.

Registration for the sessions is open to students from all schools and backgrounds, with one entire session costing $80 and both sessions costing $150. There are discounts for registration by May 7, and financial aid is available. Information about financial assistance comes from the individual school where a student is enrolling.

In addition to these sessions, the partnership is again offering its "Catholic Schools Summer Science Educational Program," which is specifically for students entering 6th, 7th, and 8th grades. This program also offers June and July sessions but is based at Christ the King School in South Bend.

The morning sessions in June will emphasize ecology and life sciences. The sessions in July will feature forensics and early engineering concepts. Lab periods are built in, with lots of hands-on learning. Student experiences will include building a roller coaster, launching your own rocket, and growing your own plants.

Registration costs for the science program are the same as for the broader educational program.
More information and a downloadable registration card for the general camp program are available at You can also contact Caitlin Cameron of ACE at 574-631-9332.

The Alliance for Catholic Education forms college graduates to be teachers serving in Catholic schools around the country. These teachers in formation, studying at Notre Dame during the summer as part of the highly selective ACE Teaching Fellows program, serve alongside current Catholic school teachers to lead the summer camp experiences, yielding an optimal teacher-student ratio and frequent individual instruction.

Over the past three summers, ACE Summer Camp Programs have served more than 1,100 students in the greater South Bend area.

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