Summer Camp FAQ

What makes the RAFT STEAM Lab unique or different?

Our program will engage students to explore relevant community obstacles and U.N. Global Goals using design thinking to create solutions for our world’s greatest challenges. RAFT’s hands-on STEAM kits, design challenges, and curriculum lay the foundational work for students to rapid-prototype, explore scientific concepts, collect data, and build creatively using environmentally sustainable materials. Students will work in whole and small groups to encourage fun and innovative collaboration. As part of our design thinking and creative reuse model, we engineer social-emotional learning opportunities for all students in an equitable and safe space. Students will work toward a final project and present with a team.

What makes each session different from the others?

We have 6 tracks of fresh material from RAFT taught twice in our 6 week camp sessions. What’s the same is, students will draw, write, photograph, and present their work with a team. What’s different amongst the sessions is the theme, the hands-on materials we use, the RAFT kits we incorporate, and the problem we are trying to solve.

Is this program in person or distance learning online?

We are offering the camp virtually with real-time facilitation from certified teachers. Historically, this is run as an in-person experience, and we hope to return to that in a near future year.

Who is teaching this program? Who are the instructors?

A live certified teacher will be present instructing the students during each class session. This year we have Qi, Tenaya, Eric, Chase, and Mikey from the Education team at RAFT.

What is your student to instructor ratio?

Whole group is usually 10 to 1. In a small group, it will be 4 to 1. Visiting experts in their field, RAFT volunteers, and student interns will support in small group instruction.

Are your staff and teachers background checked?

Yes, they are.

How many years has RAFT offered direct-to-student services?

RAFT’s Education department has worked directly with students as well as workshops and events with schools and teachers. RAFT’s summer STEAM Lab has been running for the last 3 years direct to students.

What does the weekly program cost?

The program works on a sliding scale, RAFT would like to best meet your needs and the needs of the community. We offer a financial aid program and the most competitive cost model in the Bay. On average students may need to pay $250 a week total which includes materials, STEAM project kits, synchronous learning with a certified teacher, and a whole lot of fun.

What types of payment are accepted?

Credit Card, Debit Card, Check, or Money Order.

When are the fees due?

At the time of registration. Students are accepted up until the Wednesday before the week of camp if there are spots available. For offline payments (check or money order), your registration will not be complete until we receive your payment.

How do I enroll in financial aid?

Fill out our google form with some basic information. Contact us at with any questions.

What is the refund policy? How do I withdraw from the program if my plans change?

If RAFT has not mailed you the materials, you may still cancel if necessary.

If RAFT has mailed your summer materials to you, it is no longer possible to cancel your session, nor will we be able to offer you a refund. The materials and kits will have instruction, so they can still be used and enjoyed. Real-time camp is taught only during the daily schedule of 9:00am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:00pm. RAFT STEAM Project Kits have videos online to walk you through if a day of camp is missed and we will work to get you caught up as well.

How often do the students meet? How often are the classes offered?

There is one AM session from 9:00am-12:00pm and one PM session from 1:00pm-4:00pm daily. All students are in the same 3 hour session and in groups as needed.

How do I receive my camp materials?

Materials will be mailed to you after you have successfully registered for your session up until Wednesday the week before your session begins. After that, you must pick up your materials from RAFT.

How do I enroll?

Enrolling in a RAFT STEAM Lab session is easy. Follow this link. Fill in all the required fields for contact information and billing to secure your spot. We look forward to working with you and your child.

What is the deadline to apply?

We suggest you apply at least 2 weeks before a session begins to confirm your registration and allow us enough time to send your materials. However, you may register up until the Wednesday before the session begins to receive mailed materials, or up until that Thursday (you must then pick up your materials from RAFT that Friday).

What should my student have prepared for each virtual session?

Computer or Chromebook to join our class remotely, and the box of materials provided by RAFT. Additional basic tools and materials may be needed, such as scissors, ruler, pencil, pens, and paper. The essential materials will be provided by RAFT in a box matching the session of camp you have registered for.

Can parents be in the virtual lab at any time?

Parents are welcome to be present at any time during the camp session.

Are these sessions recorded?

Yes, RAFT records and stores these sessions in a private digital location for our Education department to review for training purposes and quality assurance.

Is lunch or a snack provided?

As this summer program is currently remote, we will not be providing any food items. The kits provided by RAFT with the week’s materials will not contain any food or refrigerable items.

Who do I contact for questions about enrollment? Who do I contact for questions about the content of the camp?

You can contact us at