Skip to Navigation | Skip to Content
  • Location:
    Brookside Nature Center
    Wheaton Regional Park
    1400 Glenallan Ave.
    Wheaton, Maryland 20902
    Directions and Map

  • Hours of Operation:
    Tuesday through Saturday
    9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
    Closed Mondays and major

  • Contacts:
    Phone: 301-962-1480
    Fax: 301-962-8476

Survey: How are Nature Centers doing?

Summer Camps

Brookside Nature Center summer camp 2012Brookside Nature Center's camps are designed to fit a parent's busy schedule and keep a camper excited about being outside all summer long. All camps include Naturalist-lead activities, hikes, crafts, and games designed to inspire and foster a love for nature. Register for up to seven weeks of concurrent camp sessions for children entering grades 1-3 and/or grades 4-6. Camp sessions run Monday through Friday from 9 – 3:30, and extended care in the morning and afternoon is available for an additional fee.

Brookside Nature Center believes in sharing a passion for the natural world with others and modeling that passion through respect for all living things. Our camps are well known for high quality nature education delivered by professional teachers and naturalists.

Summer Camp registration begins January 19th

Here is a list of the 2016 summer's offerings at Brookside Nature Center:

June Bugs Camp

Ages 4-5 yrs #12267

Your preschooler will go bug-eyed with wonder as we explore and investigate nature through outdoor activities, arts and crafts, and games at Brookside Nature Center. Let them spread their wings and traipse the trails while getting to know the plants and animals that call Brookside home. It's a fun first day-camp experience for your little "June Bug"!
June 13-17, 2016 9:00 am-12:00pm, $160 #12268

Trail Buddies Camp

Ages 3-5 yrs

Hand-in-hand, parents and their children will explore, laugh, plan and learn about their natural world! Water play, building with nature and animal antics will keep parents and children busy. Whether it's a "messy moment" or animal movement warm-ups, you'll enjoy a balance of free play, organized games, story time and simple crafts with your best little trail buddy!
June 20-24, 2016 9:00 am-12:00pm, $160 #12268

Survivor: Glenfield Island FULL

Ages 8-11 yrs

No one will be voted off this island, promise! Come work and play together on Glenfield Island to learn basic outdor skills. We'll build a shelter, learn basic camping and emergency preparedness skills, and knot-tying. Leave your GPS at home, because we're going to practice some of the (now) "primitive" ways to navigate. Campers will also learn to make useful things from nature, including eating utensils, bowls, rafts, and more.
June 27- July 1, 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12284
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12283
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80 #12282

Naturally Creative

Ages 6-11yrs

July 5-8, , 9am-3:30pm, $232 #12281
Extended Care: 8-9am; $32 #12280
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $64 #12279

Art in nature is everywhere, whether you're looking at the veining on a dragonfly's wings or scrutinizing the filaments of a bird's feather. In this camp, we'll use all our senses and some helpful tools to explore nature's gallery, searching for inspiration for our own works of art. Using clay, paints, found materials, herbs, wood, sand and bits of fallen sky, campers will let their imagination run wild as they learn about the antural world and express themselves creatively.

Wild About Wildlife Camp FULL

Ages 6-11yrs
July 11-15, 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12287
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12286
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80 #12285

You might be surprised by the variety of animals in Wheaton Regional Park! Learn fascinating facts about the mammals, birds, insects, reptiles and amphibians in our park as we explore the meadow, ponds, stream and woods in search of wildlife. You'll develp new skills, expand your senses with new tools, and enjoy hikes, crafts, and games as you look for your wild neighbors.

Take to the Air Camp

Ages 6-11yrs

The silent wings of the owl, a flapping kite, a whirring helicopter and roaring rocket all have something in common. They take to the air! What have we learned about flight from our animal friends, and how did we apply that knowledge so that we, too, could fly? We'll examine everything from bird feathers to man-made fliers, have fun with physics and investigate the forces and forms of flight. we'll make helicopters and airplanes, launch rockets, try our hand at flight simulators and more. Take the leap and explore how things soar!
July 18-22, 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12290
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12289
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80

Little House in the Big Woods Camp FULL

Ages 6-11yrs
July 25 - 29, 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12278
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12277
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80 #12276

The recollections of Laura Ingalls Wilder so charmingly described in her "Little House" books give us a glimpse of what it was like to grow up at a time when America itself was "growing up." In this camp we'll engage in many of the activities Laura did each day, from ooking over a fire and washing clothes on a washboard to making dolls out of corn husks. We'll also explore America's story during the lat3e 1800s to learn what life was like beyond the big woods.

Nature's Laboratory Camp FULL

Ages 6-11yrs
August 1-5, 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12271
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12269
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80 #12270

Do your kids question everything, love nature and enjoy experiments? Get them into Nature’s Laboratory! Our “lab” will be the meadows, trails and woodlands of Brookside Nature Center, where kid scientists will explore, observe and collect data, and try to solve some of nature’s many mysteries. They’ll dabble in botany, herpetology, ornithology and more, using specialized tools and real scientific equipment.

Things with Wings

Ages 6-11yrs
August 8-12, , 9am-3:30pm, $290 #12274
Extended Care: 8-9am; $40 #12272
Extended Care: 3:30pm-5:30pm; $80 #12273

Look to the skies for birds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees and more! In this camp you'll discover the amazing diversity of creatures with wings; learn how to identify birds and insects; and explore different flight patterns and the adaptations that help things with wings survive. You'll be amazed with facts about our native flyers. We will catch flying insects, try bird migration, make crafts that fly, visit the Wings of Fancy live butterfly show and enjoy many fun nature activities, games and hikes.Take flight with "Things with Wings!"



A typical day at camp!

8:00 – 8:45 a.m. Early Birds: morning early drop off care
8:45 – 9:30 Morning Assembly: Sign – in, free time
9:30 First Activity Period: Craft, Recreation, or Naturalist Program
10:00 Morning Snack Break
10:30 Second Activity Period: Craft, Recreation, or Naturalist Program
12:00 Lunch (Friday is a campfire lunch so pack something to cook over the fire!)
12:45 Hiking out and about in the park
2:00 Third Activity Period: Craft, Recreation, or Naturalist Program
3:00 Meet for snack and story under the great sycamore
3:30 Time to go home!
3:30 – 5:30 p.m. Night Owls: late care
Staff/child Ratio: 1:5

Summer Employment Opportunities have been filled

  • Brookside Nature Center is looking for energetic, naturalist minded teachers to make the nature memorable for visitors. Call 301-962-1482 for more information.

Date of last page update: May 10, 2016 pt