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December 9, 2017
Time: 12:00 AM

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This is it! Youth Curator Camp is an opportunity for children ages 6 to 12 to learn about the museum, meet the museum's scientists and educators, and participate in fun, hands-on activities and programs led by the scientists! In addition, campers will enjoy pizza and a movie in the museum’s Education Center! Drop-off is between 9:45 and 10 a.m. and pick-up is between 3 and 3:15. Early and late drop-off is available for an additional fee.

Registration is only $30 per camper and only $25 per camper for VMNH members. The deadline to register is November 27. To register or for more information, please email krystal.davis@vmnh.virginia.gov or call 276-634-4171.

Activities include:

Tricky Tracks
Presented by Dr. Nancy Moncrief
In this activity campers will investigate animal tracks and make their own field guides they can use to identify tracks of local mammals. They’ll learn that feet can tell us a lot about an animal’s behavior. Each camper will also have the opportunity to make a replica mammal foot to take home.

Art From the Past
Presented by Dr. Elizabeth Moore
Junior curators will explore how people in the past used art to express themselves and communicate with each other and how archaeologists find and learn about art in the past. Students will learn about different types of art such as rock art, decorative patterns on ceramics, tattoos, and jewelry and will make some art of their own art to take home with them.

Copy a Fossil
Presented by Dr. Alex Hastings

Museum scientists often make copies of bones and teeth from fossils and recent animals in order to share them with other museums or make displays. See how it all works with Dr. Alex Hastings, Assistant Curator of Paleontology! Everyone who joins will get to paint and bring home their own fossil cast (an exact copy of the original) to make it look as close the original as they can, or make it any color they want. Perfect for the season, there will be teeth casts of reindeer, plus crocodiles and sharks, perfect to bring home for the holidays!

Zoom in and Freak Out! Using Magnification to Find Gemstones and Crystals in Local River Sands
Presented by Dr. Joe Keiper

Rivers deposit a lot of fine sand grains that come from eroding rocks. In some cases, beautiful micro gemstones and crystals can be found using magnifying lenses, microscopes, and a keen eye for detail. Students will search through locally collected river sand and learn to identify the diversity of rocks and minerals in our sands, and to obtain beautiful crystals and gemstones which they may keep.

The Secret Life of Dirt
Presented by Dr. Kal Ivanov

Soil isn’t just dirt; it is a living world that is home to many organisms. This environment is full of life: it provides food and shelter to a great number of microbes, fungi, and animals – an amazing community of living creatures. The invertebrate leaf litter and soil fauna is so incredibly diverse, and occurs in such enormous numbers, that it is difficult to describe, and should be experienced first-hand. In this activity we will focus on the invisible creatures you walk past unknowingly every time you step into a forest.

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