Children explore history with Wetaskiwin museum day camps

School may have to end when summer begins, but who says education has to stop too?

School may have to end when summer begins, but who says education has to stop too?

The Wetaskiwin Heritage Museum is hosting a series of afternoon summer camps to keep children interested in learning and peak their interest in the history that surrounds them.

The museum recently held Dinomania and Megan Patterson, museum assistant and programs coordinator, says it was a huge hit with the youths who attended.

On July 30 the camp theme is trains, followed by multiculturalism in the city, archaeology and Wetaskiwin oddities on Aug. 6, 13 and 20, respectively. “And that’s the end of it for the summer,” said Patterson.

“We try to choose themes that have a buzz to them,” she added.

This is the first year the museum has held the summer camps and Patterson says the youths who attend are really enjoying themselves.

During camp days they get to learn about the history of items involved in each theme as well as handle artifacts like a real curator would and learn about preservation procedures. “There’s also activities. Each group gets to participate in a craft that relates to that theme,” said Patterson.

The camps were an idea born of museum manager Karen Aberle, the board and Patterson. “We thought it was a good opportunity for children to continue their education in the summer, while still having fun,” said Patterson.

The Wetaskiwin Heritage Museum is a county museum and it is able to focus on many eras throughout history while still providing local context. “That’s what makes us flexible,” Patterson explained.

Children need to be pre-registered for camp days, which run 1 to 4 p.m. and the program is geared toward youths three to 12. Patterson says those younger than five must be accompanied by an adult. It is $15 per child and free for adults.