Camden's Charter Network Partnership

The Center has a special and long-standing relationship with Camden’s Charter School Network (CCSN). Over the years, we have provided CCSN with in-class experiences, afterschool programs, field trips, and internship opportunities for students in grades K – 12. The Center team also co-teaches the Advanced Placement (AP) Environmental Science and Engineering classes at Camden’s Academy Charter High School on a weekly basis. In all, the Center creates and delivers well over 500 custom programs to CCSN students with new developments each year. This close-knit relationship that we have with CCSN is one for which we are very proud as we look forward to future successes.

In-Class Experiences
Our partnership with CCSN has fostered a close-knit relationship between Center’s professional education staff, CCSN teachers, and the entire student body. Working together, Center professionals and CCSN teachers develop interactive science lessons that are in line with the current curriculum and NJ science standards. Throughout the school year, Center professionals deliver those interactive lessons to students during their daily science classes. Addressing subjects such as physics and engineering, biology and life sciences, every lesson encourages students to discover nature with the hopes that they become responsible citizens and environmental stewards.

Afterschool Programs
The Center provides several afterschool Programs for CCSN’s middle and high schools. Weekly meetings with Center professional education staff give afterschool students the opportunity to extend their learning outside the classroom, applying it to projects which enable them to explore the environment and participate in conservation actions. During these programs a unique camaraderie forms where students are encouraged to share their ideas, try new things, and create change.

Additionally, the Center leads elementary and middle school afterschool programs with an environmental "maker" feel.  Students participate in activities that promote green living and respect for natural spaces by creating "maker" projects from scratch.  Some of the activities created are fun, carnival style games with an environmental focus displayed at CCN's Green Maker Fair.  Other bigger projects created by the afterschool students include the creation of floating wetlands, currently located in the Wiggins Park Marina on the Camden Waterfront, and a functioning aquaponics system which grows fresh fruits and vegetables inside their school.

Green Makerspace Club Gardening Club
  • Believing that anyone can influence change, Green Makerspace Club empowers students to take environmental problems into their own hands. With the help of Center educators, students research local issues, find solutions, and implement their projects in their school and the greater Camden community. By the end of the school year, students’ work often culminates in a presentation not only to their peers, but also to new audiences outside of Camden. In previous years, students have worked on several projects. Click below to learn about:
    -Floating Wetlands
The relationship between plants and water may seem obvious, but there is much more going on under the surface. The goal of the Gardening afterschool program is to enhance students’ understanding of this relationship and show them how they can have a positive impact on their environment by maintaining a garden. Starting from the ground up, Center educators and students have installed raised beds, pulled weeds, and sowed seeds. Planting a mix of vegetables and native plants, the students have created a resource that both wildlife and the community can enjoy!

 For more information about the afterschool projects and activities, contact Jack Carr at