BNC Summer Camp | BNC Program Descriptions & Hours

Counselor leading 5yo campers

Whether hiking in the woods or bird watching in the meadow, campers ages 5–15 have fun while learning about nature! We offer weekly sessions at our Boston Nature Center (BNC) site in Mattapan, which features acres of a beautiful wildlife sanctuary that provides a unique nature experience for the urban explorer.

Campers can discover the dance of the honey bees in the observation hive, observe tree swallows in the meadow, or pick kale in the one of the largest community gardens in Boston. The sanctuary has trails, meadows, forests, gardens, and beautiful indoor space at the George Robert White Environmental Conservation Center.


Camp Hours

  • Full Day: 8:30 am–5:30 pm
  • Before Camp Option: 7:30–8:30 am
  • After Camp Option: 5:30–6:30 pm

Younger Campers (ages 5–9)  |  Older Campers (ages 10–13)  
Teen Campers (ages 14–15)


Younger Campers (ages 5-9)

Campers are placed by age into small, counselor-led groups. Each group has its own weekly curriculum based on a nature theme and age-appropriate framework. Weekly themes are explored through a combination of nature observation and investigation, trail explorations, outdoor play, and more.

Owls (age 5)
Counselor-to-Camper Ratio: 1 to 5
Owls explore the wonders of nature using their five senses. Each day is filled with art activities, learning games, outdoor/nature exploration, and camp songs. This full-day program includes a rest time followed by more play and outdoor exploration. Campers must be 5 years old prior to the start of their session.

Hawks (ages 6–7)
Counselor-to-Camper Ratio: 1 to 6
Hawks investigate the outdoors through science experiments and creative play. Each day is a blend of outdoor play and structured activities, providing different avenues for campers to connect with nature and each other.

Falcons (ages 8–9)
Counselor-to-Camper Ratio: 1 to 10
Falcons learn how to develop and test their own ideas to gain a better understanding of nature through discovery and hands on-activities. Whether practicing science or art or team building, campers are encouraged to follow new interests and learn new skills.


Older Campers (ages 10-13)

Campers are placed by age into small, counselor-led groups. Each group has its own weekly curriculum based on a nature theme and age-appropriate framework. Weekly themes are explored through a combination of nature observation and investigation, trail explorations, outdoor play, and more.

Ravens (ages 10–11)
Counselor-to-Camper Ratio: 1 to 10
Ravens learn through focused outdoor exploration and guided experiments to understand the natural world in greater depth. Through inquiry-based activities, they are encouraged to follow and build on their own interests.

Adventurers (ages 12–13)
Counselor-to-Camper Ratio: 1 to 10
Adventurers engage in a variety of hands-on activities that encourage self-direction, leadership skill building, and teamwork. Through multifaceted projects, adventurers learn about complex science concepts and environmental issues such as Farm to Table, Renewable Energy, and Climate Change.


Teen Campers (ages 14-15)

Leaders-in-Training (ages 14-15)
This is a specialized camp program designed to develop important leadership skills and prepare older campers to help lead camp. LITs practice skills such as public speaking, group management, and caring for younger children. 

As LITs grow into their new role as camp leaders, they will take part in fun activities that make camp special, such as team-building activities, science learning, and field trips. After successfully completing one LIT session, LITs 15 years or older are eligible to help lead camp on a volunteer basis for up to two weeks. 


Extended Day Options

Before Camp (7:30-8:30 am) • After Camp (5:30-6:30 pm)

Need an earlier drop-off or a later pick-up? Our trained camp staff will supervise campers enrolled in our optional Before and After Camp programs. Campers may choose from a variety of activities, including active games, restful games, coloring, crafts, and reading. The group may also choose to play in the field just outside the Nature Center.

Select desired dates for this optional program during checkout when enrolling online. After Camp is not available for Roxbury Latin sessions.


Overnight Camp at Wildwood

Wildwood camp logo

Is your child ready to try an overnight camp experience? Check out Mass Audubon’s Wildwood Camp, located in Rindge, NH! With outdoor exploration programs for boys and girls ages 9–17, Wildwood is the perfect next step for your day camp-lover.


What Others Are Saying

“I can't say enough about how much my child and I love BNC. It's the most supportive, accepting, educational, and FUN camp experience ever! Highly, highly recommend.” 

“Seriously, this camp just was the best. It way exceeded any expectations we had and our son already said he wants to go back every year until he can be a counselor.”