STEM Stuff to Stave off Summer Brain Drain

STEM Stuff to Stave off Summer Brain Drain

Most of us are familiar with the concept of summer brain drain. It’s the phenomenon, also known as “summer slide,” where kids on summer break get mentally lazy and actually lose skills and knowledge.

According to, “Kids can lose as many as two to three months of math and reading skills over the summer. Not only do students forget important concepts, but summer slide also means that teachers have to spend the first few weeks of a new school year re-teaching the previous year’s ideas and principles—to rusty brains, at that. And while certain students are more likely to suffer from the dreaded drain than others, all kids are susceptible to the phenomenon, unfortunately.”

Since year-round school doesn’t seem to be heading to the U.S. anytime soon, parents have to take it upon themselves to slow the slide. Summer reading programs are well-known antidotes, but what about adding some STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) activities? It may be too late for most camps (check for availability), but here are some other local and online options, most of which can also carry over into the school year, via afterschool and weekend programs, plus holiday camps and next year’s summer camps.



Children’s Museum of St. Tammany (Northshore)

Participants in their STEAM Sundays can expect to experience the power of play with a hands on activity that parents can enjoy as well!  Beneficial for children of all ages.


Core Element (New Orleans)

In addition to its efforts to improve science and math programs in our schools, this non-profit offers summer and holiday camps, robotics competitions, LEGO leagues, and more.


Infinity Science Center (Mississippi)

The visitor’s center for Stennis Space Center houses tons of interactive exhibits related to space, the Earth, and the ocean. It hosts Science Saturdays, special events, and Astro Camps every summer.


Louisiana Children’s Museum (New Orleans)

The weekly STEM Lab explores music as both art and science. Kids can learn about vibrations and pitch, and listen to rhythms that come from different cultures and their instruments in honor of World Music Day.


Mad Science (New Orleans)

Family-owned and helmed by LSU and Tulane-educated scientists and engineers, this company hosts STEM programs, camps, parties, and their after-school science club..


Microsoft Store  (New Orleans)

In addition to STEM Saturdays, the store at Lakeside Shopping Center offers various ongoing robotics, design, coding, and other computer and video game themed camps and classes.


Technology & Learning Center (Northshore)

At this Mandeville facility, STEM offerings include STEM Friday and camps/workshops that teach design, programming, and video-game based challenges and activities.