Local Enrichment Opportunities

Local Enrichment Opportunities

Appalachian Institute for Creative Learning (AICL) Summer Enrichment Camp

“AICL creates an environment in which it’s safe to laugh and learn, to risk and fail, to experiment with something outside of one’s competence. We celebrate the life of the mind, but we’ve seen too many bright, interesting campers who don’t necessarily fit well in a traditional school model to limit ourselves to those who’ve been classified as “gifted.” Instead, we call our campers motivated learners, figuring anyone who shows up to take biology, math, or art in July is motivated. Campers make lifelong friends at AICL. They experience breakthroughs in their thinking and understanding. They experience acceptance and new confidence in their social skills. But most of all, they receive a lesson that we hope will stay with them their whole lives, and that, through all of our changes, we’ve known all along: Learning is fun.”

Each summer, AICL hosts its Summer Enrichment Camp at Warren Wilson College. They offer both residential and day camp programs, and serve campers ages 8 to 17 (or rising 3rd graders to rising 12th graders). The day camp program accepts children ages 8 to 12. Overnight campers stay in a college dormitory, generally sharing a room with a roommate; a counselor stays in another room on the same hall. AICL typically has a staff-to-camper ratio of 1:5.


Tarheel Junior Historians at the Smith-McDowell House

Beginning August 14, junior history buffs meet on the second Thursday of the month at 3:30. There is a small fee involved, but the activities sound like a lot of fun!


Colburn Earth Science Museum

Colburn Earth Science Museum offers after-school science clubs for K-6 students. Each club is designed for different levels and covers unique areas of earth science with exciting lessons, games, crafts, activities, and just plain fun! Clubs are designed to be fun and entertaining, but also educational using a hands-on approach to understanding science concepts.

To sign-up, you can call and register over the phone at 254-7162.

Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI)

PARI (pronounced “perry”) is a non-profit astronomical observatory located in the Pisgah National Forest near Balsam Grove, North Carolina. PARI operates multiple radio telescopes and optical telescopes for research and teaching purposes. The observatory is affiliated with the University of North Carolina system through the Pisgah Astronomical Research and Science Educational Center (PARSEC).

Throughout the year, PARI hosts workshops and tours for students, including “Space Day” each May. Check the schedule to see when you might want to visit for a talk and tour.


Duke TIP

The Duke University Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving academically gifted and talented youth. As a world leader in gifted and talented education, Duke TIP works with students, their families, and educators to identify, recognize, challenge, engage, and help students reach their highest potential.

Children with advanced intellectual and academic abilities continually perplex and challenge educators and parents. Duke TIP is committed to serving this unique group of students by providing services and programs beyond what is offered in the classroom to meet the individual needs of gifted children.

Click here for information on Duke TIP opportunities for 4th-6th graders.

Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education

Located in the Pisgah National Forest near Brevard, the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education offers Eco-Explorers programs throughout the year for students ages 8 to 13 to engage with the natural world through hands-on investigations. Online reservations are required. Past programs have included animal tracking, primitive survival skills, stream investigation, and fly-fishing, just to name a few.