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Best STEM Summer Camps In San Jose (2024)

STEM camps have become a staple for children who want to learn outside of school. There has never been a more comprehensive selection of programs, with many in-person day summer camps and online camps available year-round.

Kids around San Jose are spoiled for choice with a world-class list of camps that combine classroom fun with the occasional outdoor activities. These San Jose STEM camps can help your kids build up their knowledge in fields with excellent career prospects. 

STEM Camps San Jose

iCode School

With STEM camps for spring, summer, and all other school holidays, iCode School has something for all kids ages 6-18. 

The camps hosted by iCode School cover a range of STEM topics including Roblox coding, VEX bots, Python coding, YouTube creator content, Minecraft, and many more. The focus is primarily on the technology side of the STEM fields, emphasizing coding to encourage creative thinking, increase problem-solving, and foster collaboration. Kids learn applicable, real-world skills here while connecting with peers with similar passions.

iCode School is conveniently located on the southeast side of San Jose. They provide their classes, after-school programs, and camps as modules that can be used independently. 

iD Tech San Jose State

iD Tech hosts STEM camps across the country, including classes on the campus of San Jose State. Children between the ages of 7-17 are welcome to attend these camps which are one week in duration with daytime and overnight options.

Courses include some of the most in-demand technologies on the market with coding in Javascript and Python, artificial intelligence, Roblox, Battlebots, and YouTube creation. The experienced instruction staff is hand-selected to provide the best possible education for the week of camp, making learning fun and exciting.

Children who visit an iD Tech camp can get a glimpse into college life to be prepared for the real thing in the coming years. This experience can prove invaluable when it is time to pursue higher education.

Youth Science Institute

Youth Science Institute offers summer camps focused on the sciences while allowing children to enjoy the great outdoors with hiking and wildlife encounters. You can find them in the beautiful Vasona Lake County Park, nestled in between the neighborhoods of southern San Jose.

The summer programs through the Youth Science Institute were introduced in 1953 and have taught kids about science ever since. Depending on what kind of scientist your child is, they can enroll in camps to investigate natural forces, discover facts about natural wonders, explore sound and motion, or quest through nature.

Camps run for a week at a time and children can enjoy five full days of activities from 9:00 AM to 1:30 PM with an option to stay until 5:30 for even more learning fun. 

Rock-It Science

Rock-It Science camps are hosted at the St. Jude Episcopal Church in Cupertino which includes indoor classroom activities, shaded outdoor areas, and a playground for recess periods. These camps are for future scientists between the ages of 6-12 interested in fun themes including the science behind natural disasters, the magic of food, and building whimsical inventions.

Camps are five-day sessions from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM and include plenty of time outdoors conducting experiments in a blocked-off section of parking. Kids can be themselves and learn about fundamental scientific concepts while making a complete mess as they experiment.

Experiments they can perform include simulating an earthquake, creating and cleaning up an oil spill, simulating a landslide, and attempting to melt a penny with the energy from the sun. It is part fun, part play, and all educational. 

Camp Captivate

Camp Captivate prides itself on being one of the finest STEAM camps in the South Bay Area. The camps provide a social learning experience through the careful instruction of passionate teachers, keen on sharing the breakthroughs of STEAM with the next generation.

Combining science labs, fine arts, and physical education, Camp Captivate offers a classroom experience for ages 5-13 with excellent student-to-teacher ratios. They’re available at three locations around San Jose: St. Justin’s School, St. Leo the Great School, and Holy Family School.

The sessions group kids by their age. They cover the importance of combining science and art to create a well-rounded life. Students enjoy hands-on learning and social-emotional learning and get daily exercise.

Young Engineers South Bay

Young Engineers was established in 2008 and provides lessons to youth from all over the world from its San Jose location. These programs can be adapted to any school’s curriculum as an add-on or standalone class.

STEM camp themes from Young Engineers include big builders, Algo Buddy screen-free coding language, bricks challenge, Galileo Technic, robo bricks, and robotics. Lessons are in easy-to-follow, 45 to 90-minute sessions that keep your kids involved.

Young Engineers has programming for young students between pre-school and the 9th grade, setting them up throughout primary school to achieve great things in high school. Young Engineers is the definition of Edutainment, providing education while being incredibly fun for kids. 

Destination Science

Destination Science believes in offering children a balanced educational experience beyond simple information and experimentation. Kids who attend a program at Destination Science can enjoy improved communication through collaboration with peers and an openness to trying new things.

Camps are daily for one to four weeks and the days are structured to mimic a typical school day, complete with outdoor activities and breaks. This makes it easy for youth of all stripes to find familiarity and settle in for days of exciting learning opportunities. 

Destination Science has 8 locations across Santa Clara County, including other places like Los Altos, Los Gatos, Milpitas, Santa Clara, and more. These spots offer the same fun and educational experience to children ages 5-11, preparing them for a future that science can help shape.

STEM for Kids

STEM for Kids brings engineering, programming, and robotics to all students from pre-kindergarten to middle school south of the city. They provide children with what they call the 4C Skills: communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity. Young students can develop real-world skills at an early age that they can easily use later in their academic careers.

Starting with the basics, kids get to learn about computers, robotics, coding, and game-making. STEM for Kids has gamified lessons to keep things engaging and their students eager to learn more and grow. They’ll enjoy fun missions and receive rewards for their progress as they absorb powerful lessons.

The Four-Dimensional Learning model implemented combines educational concepts with career connections and real-world practices.