Parents are well aware of summer programs specializing in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), but add arts to the mix and a wondrous dynamic occurs.

Founded five years ago, International Ivy Summer Enrichment Program has captured children’s imaginations with its extensive offerings of classes. STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) classes abound for inquisitive children to explore. A dedicated and highly trained staff of 100 provides diverse instruction in subjects ranging from robotics to magic.

International Ivy Summer Enrichment Program, which operates in 12 locations statewide, is opening a new location in the Princeton area at the Chapin School this summer from June 27 to August 19. International Ivy is open to all children between the ages 5 and 14.

According to Lily Wong, founder and program director at International Ivy, “I started International Ivy because I believe all children should have access to intellectually stimulating learning experiences over the summer. Students can explore subjects like robotics, video game creation, computer programming, science, math, engineering, performing arts, visual arts, entrepreneurship and other areas that may not be available during the school year.”

Wong’s own children were her inspiration. “I wanted them to have creative, hands-on experiences during the summer. Summer is a great time to explore, meander, stretch the imagination and lose oneself in doing something fun. Our ultimate goal is to help our students find their passion. Once they find it, they are self-motivated to learn and explore further.

“We offer classes across many disciplines to satisfy the diverse interests and talents of the children we serve. There are more than 60 classes to choose from in technology, science, performing arts, visual arts, math, business, sports, recreation and even construction!”

Exciting new courses have been added for summer, 2016. These include Digital Fashion Design, 3D Art Projects – Graphic Arts and Print-Making, 3D Printing, Stage Combat, Pre-Law, Chemical Engineering in Polymers and Bioplastics, Fantasy Sports Math, and many others.

International Ivy designs classes to be creative. Kids develop video games, devise the winning robots, tinker with the engineering of gadgets, and brainstorm a plot for a film. Wong states, “There are many opportunities for kids to exercise their creative juices at a time in their lives when they are the most creative and open.”

But beyond creativity, International Ivy provides vital training in critical thinking and problem solving. Students are given challenges and adventures to figure out. They analyze information, draw conclusions, and try different solutions. Wong stresses, “We encourage resilience and an optimistic outlook. Optimism is a way of seeing the world where problems are temporary and we can take actions to reduce or resolve problems.”

International Ivy demonstrates that joy is part of learning. Sharing information, collaborating with others, and just having summer fun are reasons enough to go full STEAM ahead.

International Ivy. 908-899-1338.

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