GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade.

What if someone gives you a piece of cardboard?

4-H, a youth development organization, believes learning should be fun. The organization is holding cardboard-themed summer camps focusing on helping students with STEM, which stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. June’s cardboard camp, which is held at the Brown County STEM Innovation Center at UW-Green Bay, is giving students an opportunity to build a city from cardboard.

“When I heard about the camp I was like, “Yes, I get to build my own house!,” says incoming senior Alyssa Ostrenga. Ostrenga’s been coming to 4-H’s summer camps since she was 10 years old.

“I wanted to do just a single-story house,” says Ostrenga. “And so I started with the base and the outline of it and at first I had one piece and then I was like that’s a little too small, I’m going to try to make it a little bigger.”

Students were handed a flat piece of cardboard at the beginning of camp and it is up to their imagination to handle the rest. It took students 3 days to build their own structures, and once they are all assembled, students will put their buildings together to create a cardboard city. They will work together to create a name for the city.

  • 4-H summer camp

“STEM is part of most jobs no matter what job you get into you have to use some form of science, technology, engineering, or math,” says Melinda Pollen, 4-H’s Youth Development Educator. “Getting young people the opportunity to learn those skills at a young age is really the core of what we try to do here at the 4-H program.”

In August, 4-H will host an arcade cardboard camp. Brown County 4-H’s mission is to provide opportunities for personal growth and to encourage the positive development of youth, their families, and their communities. For more information about Brown County 4-H, click here.