Q: What are “Juniors” and “Seniors”?
A: Juniors are elementary school age kids, rising 2nd through 5th graders Seniors are secondary age kids, rising 6th graders and up. For campers “on the cusp,” between junior and senior, we will change their groups to keep friends together.
The group designation is more important in sports than in technology. Because of our individualized instruction, campers will learn what they are ready for and proceed at their own pace in either Junior or Senior technology. In sports, it is important to play with other kids the same age and size.
Q: Why can’t my child have their own computer during technology? Why does my child share a computer with another camper during technology?
A: TIC believes not only in advancing technical skills on the computer, but also taking advantage of the time in Technology to continue to foster peer relationships. By sharing the computer, in applicable Technology options, campers get to practice teamwork and collaboration, while also having the opportunity to bounce off their original ideas with another camper. The nature of the Technology industry requires the ability to effectively communicate and work efficiently with others, and we feel our model will help prepare our campers to succeed in that environment.
Q: Does my camper have to take programming first?
A: Programming is only a prerequisite for robotics. All other technology options are available without programming knowledge. Please consider your child when registering for technology options. Kids as young as 7 years old can definitely benefit and thrive in programming but if your child has a hard time sitting for long periods of time, then we would suggest beginning with a session of graphic design or animation first. It is also important to note that Programming requires basic typing skills.
Q: Why can’t my preschooler or kindergartner come to camp?
A: Our program is appropriate only if campers know how to read, at least on a minimal level. Also, having been to first grade gives them the added socialization skills that are necessary for collaboration in the computer lab and teamwork on the field.
Q: What if my child requires special accommodations?
A: Because of our 1:4 teaching ratio and the supportive nature of our staff, TIC has had success with children who have mild learning disabilities (dyslexia, ADD, ADHD). We have also served children with physical disabilities (e.g. deafness or spina bifida). However, our staff is not trained in special education. Therefore, parents of children with behavioral conditions which require very close supervision must, before submitting an application, discuss with us whether TIC is appropriate for their child. If your child requires any special accommodations or receives services in school (such as an IEP), it is hugely helpful to us if parents note that on their registration and communicate with their Site Director prior to their child starting at TIC. The more we know ahead of time, the better prepared we can be to ensure your camper has the best possible experience with us!
Q: What is TIC’s tax ID#?
A: TIC’s new tax ID# is 46-0767005. It is printed on every statement we send you.
Q: Is it possible to go half days or for only one week in a session?
A: We do not recommend this because your camper will only experience our real “product” by attending the full two weeks due to our technology schedule and the fact that they work with a partner or in a small group. We also do not pro-rate sessions for partial attendance.
Q: Can I get a refund if my child decides not to come?
A: Yes, until May 1, except for the nonrefundable deposit of $200 per camper per session. There are no tuition refunds after that date.
Q: Why can’t my child play only basketball in the athletic half of the day?
A: TIC is not a specialty sports camp. Our athletic program has always offered a variety of active sports, to exercise the body as well as the mind, and the wide choice of activities has always been very popular. For senior campers, basketball (or another favorite sport) can be requested as a daily one-hour “focus.”
Q: Can I choose more than one tech option per session?
A: At TIC, campers don’t just get a “taste” of each technology. They learn to master one skill at a time by following through on a project of their own design in just one chosen tech option. Campers may, however, choose to do a different option in each TIC session they attend, or deepen their skills if they repeat a tech option in another session. Since the instruction is individualized, there is never any repetition— they learn only what they want or need at any point. Many skills from different tech options can also be used to enhance projects in new tech options.
Q: Why should my child take programming?
A: We believe that programming is an essential part of learning to do anything really powerful and creative on the computer. The benefits are explained here. Many kids come to camp wanting to design “video games.” That’s what programming teaches! (Of course, game design is not the only thing one can do in programming.)
Q: Why must my child take programming before taking robotics?
A: In robotics, campers need some programming background to succeed, even though robotics also uses spatial reasoning and kinesthetic skills. Seniors who have knowledge of C++ are able to do the most advanced projects.
Q: What if my child isn’t into or doesn’t like sports?
A: Don’t be intimidated by the word “sports.” We just want to get the kids moving and expose them to a wide array of activities, including traditional and non-traditional sports. There is something for everyone, and we make sure both experienced and reluctant athletes are happy. Most kids who have had a negative team experience thrive at TIC because we make it FUN! We also offer plenty of indoor games, which can include dance, yoga, four square, gymnastics, Zumba, and lots of crazy games. In addition, we encourage our Athletics staff to learn which activities their group enjoys the most so that we can include those on our flexible schedule.
Q. Do campers usually register for 1, 2 or more sessions?
A. About 40% of our campers attend for only one session, but come back summer after summer. Approximately 30% attend for two sessions since the instruction is individualized and there is no repetition. Campers either choose to dive deeper into their favorite tech option or take another program to add to their learnings. 30% attending three or more sessions. In VA, campers may not attend more than three sessions per state licensing limitations.
Q: What is Color War?
A: Color War is an end of the session event where campers are placed on one of two teams and compete in fun spirited activities/games in both Technology and Athletics. Campers are highly encouraged to wear their team’s color the last two days of the session. They receive a TIC T Shirt in the color of their Color War Team during the session. During Closing Ceremonies the winning team of Color War is revealed and both teams celebrate the event with juice and cookies for all!
Q: Why—unlike other activities during sports—do tennis and drama cost extra?
A: There are extra rentals involved in providing these options, and our capacities are limited.
Q: Why can’t my child take more than one extra cost option in the same session?
A: Drama and tennis may conflict with each other in the athletics portion of the schedule.
Q: How does TIC deal with bullying?
A: Bullying is not tolerated at TIC. Our staff is trained to be alert to any evidence of bullying. A camper who bullies other campers is sent to the office and parents are called. Depending on the severity of the incident, the camper may be asked to leave camp, with no refund of tuition.