Welcome to CAC Summer Camps!
CAC Summer Camps give children age 8-14 unique opportunities to explore the built environment and learn firsthand why design matters.
All Summer Camps will take place virtually. Campers will meet with their Camp Leader and other campers daily, via Zoom, to get to know one another, share their work, and receive instruction and motivation to complete at-home projects. Parents/Guardians will receive step-by-step instructions in order to best support their camper.
All camps require teamwork, creative problem-solving and visual thinking. Campers will share and present their ideas throughout the program, all while developing self-confidence and communication skills. They will see Chicago’s buildings in a new light and discover how architects' dreams become reality. Join us!
See upcoming camps
Important Information & Forms
Registration is a two-step process. Please complete both steps to ensure your child's spot in the camp.
STEP ONE: Use our website to select the preferred camp and purchase a ticket for your child. Full payment is required at the time of purchase. After the purchase, you will receive a confirmation and receipt via email. Your child's spot in the camp is now reserved.
STEP TWO: After the ticket purchase is complete, you will need to fill out all
Required Forms & Agreements. These forms are due no later than two weeks before the camp start date.
You will also receive an email before the start of camp including:
Welcome letter from your camp leader
Reminder to complete Required Forms & Agreements
Required Forms & Agreements
To complete your registration, review and sign all required forms, agreements, waivers,and releases prior to the start of camp including:
Emergency Contact Information
Code of Conduct & Discipline Policy
Consent for Participation & Media Release Student Acceptable Use Policy
Indemnification and Hold Harmless Agreement
Waiver and release
Digitally sign all the required forms, agreements, waiver and release:
SIGN FORMS AND AGREEMENTS
SIGN WAIVER AND RELEASE
All required forms, agreements, waivers and releases are due no later than two weeks before the camp start date.
Getting Ready for Camp
Camp Leaders and Facilitators
Camps are led by no fewer than two full-time CAC education staff members at all times. Camp leaders are college graduates with education experience. They will be assisted by one or more full or part-time facilitators/program assistants. We will also host guest professionals to speak or assist with a project.
A Day at Camp
Each day campers will have a morning check-in with their group and camp leaders (via Zoom). We’ll share some inspiration, a warm-up activity, and kick-off the day. We want to make camp week exciting and special! Specific camp curriculum varies. Activities range from hands-on art projects, to outdoor scavenger hunts, to virtual chats with special guests. In general, each day in camp includes a morning Zoom check-in, 1-2 hours of activities, occasional online components, and a daily journal prompt.
Parents/Guardians will receive step-by-step instructions in order to best support their camper. All materials and resources will be shipped to campers.
First Day of Camp
Parents and guardians are asked to help their camper logon to Zoom to check-in their camper and meet camp staff. Campers should be prepared to introduce themselves to the group on the first day.
Parents/guardians are encouraged to support their campers during virtual camp check-ins and with at-home camp activities. However, to ensure the best group experience, parents/guardians are asked to let the camper be the lead on the video.
Each day camp begins with a virtual group check-in. Campers’ parents/guardians will receive an email invitation with a private link and password to Zoom. Any text chats or video conferencing will be monitored by CAC staff at all times.
During virtual group check-ins, campers are asked to be present by turning on their camera and microphone. Muting their microphone may be necessary if there is excess background noise, or when instructed. Of course, as necessary for your at-home learning environment, please feel comfortable muting the camera and/or microphone.
CAC Camp Staff provides daily live office hours for any camper that may need further assistance working on activities or would like feedback on their progress. If your camper cannot participate, or needs to leave early, in any group online activities contact your Camp Leader to let them know.
The remainder of the camp day can generally be completed off-line. We encourage students to take screen breaks to make, build, play and move their bodies during the day!
Campers will be expected to follow the Student Acceptable Use Agreement and Code of Conduct guidelines when using devices and computers during camp.
Each day campers are learning new things, completing small projects and working toward their final project. Campers who miss one or more days of camp will be behind or missing parts of their projects. We will provide a fun, camp-like environment to encourage continued participation. No refunds will be given for partial or nonattendance in camp.
What to Bring
In order for a camper to be successful during the program, they need:
Access to wifi
Access to a device (phone, tablet, computer) for at least 90 minutes per day
A safe work space for making art projects
Camp Supply Kits
Primary camp materials will be provided in a Camp Supply Kit including supplies such as:
CAC Camp T-shirt
Pencils, crayons, or other drawing tools
Tape or glue
Specialty items specific to the camp
Notebook for journaling
Campers will also need access to the following common household materials, not supplied by CAC
Tape or glue
Magazines, newspapers, or other recycled paper goods
Supply Kits will be available for contactless pick-up at the Chicago Architecture Center (111 E. Wacker Dr.). A valid ID will be required.
Please fill out this form to pick up your camp supply kit on June 20 th. If you would like for you kit to be mailed for an additional charge, please fill out this form. For more information regarding the secure camp supply pick up, please view this form.
In order to receive a kit on time, participants must register before the following dates:
Architecture Camp 1.0 & 2.0 (June 29-July 3)
Wednesday, June 17 @ 5pm Architecture Camp 1.0 (July 6-10)
Wednesday, June 24 @ 5pm Parks/Playgrounds (July 6-10)
Wednesday, June 24 @ 5pm Design Your Neighborhood 1.0 & 2.0 (July 20-24)
Wednesday, July 8 @ 5pm
For those who register after these dates, they can either pay for express shipping, or participate using their own at-home materials. CAC cannot guarantee that kits will arrive by the start of camp.
Each camp will culminate with a final showcase for family and friends beginning at 2pm on the last day of camp. Campers will display their work from the week, present their final project and receive a camp certificate.
Cancellations & Refund Policy
Cancellations made six or more days in advance of the first day of camp are eligible for a full refund. Cancellations made five or less days in advance of the first day are eligible for a 50% refund. No refunds will be given after the start of camp or for repeated nonattendance.
Cancel and request a refund by contacting CAC Groups Sales at 312.922.1130 or
Wait List Policy
If a summer camp fills up, that summer camp will be considered "sold out" and a wait list will be posted on the camp's registration page.
If a spot becomes available in the requested camp, CAC will send a notification via email. Any available tickets will be distributed first come, first serve.
Eligibility, Skill Level & Students with Disabilities
Does my camper need any experience or skills to enjoy this camp? Previous experience or technical skills in architecture are not required. The academic skill set is less important to consider than the kinds of experiences staff have designed for campers. We expect campers will be able to—and want to—do collaborative, team-based activities as well as independent work. The camper should
want to work in teams and with small groups, positively contribute to online group discussions, do hands-on projects and be eager to participate. If those things are unpleasant for a student, CAC Camp likely will not be a good experience.
My camper has a learning/behavioral/emotional disability; can they participate in your program?
CAC Camp staff members are enthusiastic, skilled educators, but do not have specific training to support campers with ADHD or other special learning needs at this time. If your child has an aide with them at school this may be a difficult camp for them.
Consider the information below and speak with our education team if you have any questions. We will do our very best to ensure it is a positive experience for all campers! Contact the Education department at 312.561.2158 or
Virtual programs are small (30 students) and will be staffed by two adults. Our staff members are all college graduates with education experience.
Programs are highly interactive, but include independent, self-paced activities. There are academic components and we expect campers to want and be able to take notes, observe, sketch and listen to presentations for 30-45 minutes. Activities completed at home include step-by-step instructions, yet final project outcomes are open ended and student-informed.
Camps require students to be able to transition multiple times each day. Campers should be comfortable meeting many new people in various settings, transitioning from quiet to active time and alternating between individual and group work. In a virtual camp setting, campers will have additional flexibility to transition between activities at their own pace.
Campers should be capable of self-regulating and have well-developed personal, social and emotional coping mechanisms. If they are unable to self-regulate, if they're not sure how to signal to the program leader that they need a break or they don't currently have a way to manage distractions on their own, parts of the program may be challenging for them and quite possibly for other members of the group.