YouTube is launching its own summer camp — and says its virtual reimagining of the temporarily-halted season tradition will seek to help parents occupy their homebound, stir-crazy children.
Appropriately titled Camp YouTube, YouTube says it was inspired to create the initiative after Google searches for ‘virtual summer camps’ have spiked in recent weeks. Camp YouTube will live within the Learn@Home hub — an educational landing page that YouTube created in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic amid wide school closures — and will spotlight summer camp-themed videos.
Camp YouTube will last for two weeks and will comprise over 1,200 videos, with new content rolling out every weekday. The hub will also feature a dedicated section for kids under age 13.
Right now, a landing page offers four different ‘camp’ categories for kid-viewers to explore: ‘arts’, ‘adventure’, ‘sports’, and ‘STEM’. In addition to these channels, YouTube is also highlighting several so-called ‘campfire talks’ about race and discrimination, as well as ‘break time’ clips (including snack recipe videos and quick crafting ideas), and VR field trips. The camp is being further gamified via PDF bingo cards that parents can download and fill out to track participation.
Channels who will be featured on Camp YouTube include: Explore.org, which will provide wildlife content; outdoorsy videos from The Brain Scoop; and dinosaur content from the American Museum of Natural History. Arts-related content will hail from art history channel ArtistYear, dance channel Nani Nani Kids, and music-focused Kidz Bop.
For sports-inclined viewers, YouTube has pacted with the Jr. NBA to develop two youth basketball camps that will teach exercises, drills, and more advanced skills. Finally, Camp YouTube will offer a number of STEM-related videos — from science facts and experiments to coding. Participating channels on this front will include National Geographic, ASAPScience, Jabrils, GoldieBlox, and PBS Kids.