Frequently Asked questions
Where is Master Builder Camp (MBC) located?
Our program is located at 3536 NW 8th Ave Gainesville, FL 32605. This property is owned by a private school and we rent the space from them for our program times. We do not have an office there, so dropping by during non-program hours is not an option. Please call us if you want to schedule a time to meet outside of camp program hours.
Do you offer extended care services?
Yes! Master Builder Camp provides early drop off from 7:30a-9a at a rate of $25/week and late pick up options from 3pm-5:30pm at a rate of $55/week for our campers. This extended care program is run by MBC staff on MBC property. We also offer some after camp add-on classes that run between 3p and 5pm that can be a part of your campers extended day with MBC. These are our LEGO Animation classes, our MBC News Crew Class, Comic Book Making, and our Youtube 101 class. See Summer Camp Page for more details.
Is Master Builder Camp religiously affiliated?
No. The space that we rent is owned by a religiously affiliated school, however our camp has no affiliation with them nor any other religious entity.
Can a parent stay with a child if needed?
Absolutely, we know that (especially for some of our younger campers) starting a new program can be stressful, and mom or dad may want to stick around for a bit to help settle their kiddo in. No problem! We encourage parents to stay as long as they feel they need until their child is ready for them to go. Just let us know if you feel this may be the case for your child, and we will do all that we can to help them feel comfortable.
What are the age groups and staff ratios at MBC?
We offer 3 different age appropriate programs at MBC and they are staffed accordingly.
Mini Builders for ages 4-5, is staffed at a 1 staff/5 campers or less ratio and follows our regular program with their own separate camp room and early education specialist counselors that work with them to create a fun and dynamic day of building and fun at their own skill level.
Master Builders for ages 6-9, is staffed at a 1 staff/8 campers or less ratio and the ages are further broken down into crews of kids (6-7) (8-9). Our oldest campers (ages 10-13) are staffed at 1/10 or less ratio.
What is the experience of your staff?
Our staff is comprised of college students and professionals in the fields of teaching, art, engineering, woodworking, humanities, and social sciences; and are chosen based on their skills both as educators and craftsmen in our maker space. All staff are at least 20 years old, level 2 background checked, and have received extensive (over 80 hours pre-camp, including First-Aid and CPR) and ongoing (at least 20 more hours through the summer) training with Master Builder Camp.
How do I sign up?
You can register online by choosing the weeks/classes you want from our summer camps page. You will add them to your cart and when you go to checkout, our registration program "CONNECT" will walk you through our forms and create an account for you. You will choose your extended care options in that checkout process, unless you want one of the After Camp Classes (which have to be added to your cart separately). If you already have a CONNECT account, you can log back in at any time to add new sessions or edit your child's information.
Do you offer discounts for sibling registrations or for signing up for multiple weeks?
Yes, we do! We offer a $15/week discount for 2-3 weeks and $30/week discount for 4+ weeks. There is also a $15 Sibling Discount . These discounts are automatically applied, no code needed. (No discounts apply during early registration pricing.)
Do you have Half Day options?
Yes, for certain ages. Half day (9am-12p) is available for our 4-5 year old campers, but not for the older ages as they are working on a team project all that would make it difficult for them to come in and out of if they missed the afternoon schedule.
Do you have Daily Drop In Options?
Daily Drop In is now a new option this year! $65/day and they will get paired up with a camper buddy to help them integrate in and given options of working on a personal project or joining the team build. The only weeks we do not offer daily drop in is our two 4 day camps starting June 4th and July 1st. You can register for this on our summer camp page.
Do you offer scholarships or income-based discounts?
Not at this time.
Do you accept payments?
Yes. At checkout, you will be given the option to pay in full or pay with a deposit and monthly payments. You can manage this or make extra payments in between, if desired, by logging into your account.
What is your refund policy?
We understand that sometimes plans change. We are happy to refund your registration cost (minus a $15 processing fee for each session canceled) up to 2 weeks prior to the start of your child's scheduled program. We offer a 50% refund after that. Less than 1 week prior to camp there is no discount guarantee. Session switches are fine at no cost as long as there is space available.
School Break Camps / SUMMER CAMP Questions
What is a typical daily schedule?
7:30a- Early Drop Off begins with Free Play Options
9a- Campers arrive & settle in & have lots of free play options available
9:15a- Morning Warm Ups / group game / crew team building fun
10:00a- Big Project of the Week
11:15a - Camper Kindness Shout Outs (otherwise known as Awesome Possum Time)
11:30a- Lunch & Outside Play
12:30p - (back to ) Big Project of the Week
1:30 - Free Play Options Open
2:30p - Wrap up of day in crews & Dance Party
3:00p - Camper Pick up
Extended Day Options:
3p-5:30p Extended Day: Independent Projects, Free Build, and Games
3:00p-5:00p: After Camp Classes
How early can I drop my camper off in the morning?
Campers who have not paid for Early Drop Off service can be dropped off in the Main MBC Camp Room between 8:45am-9:15am, but no earlier. If you need to drop off earlier than 8:45a, you can add our early drop of option for $25/week.
How are the camper groups broken up?
During the structured activity time, campers will be divided into teams ranging from 12-20 kids based on their ages/skill level/experience with MBC. This allows us to tailor the challenges and instruction to their developmental abilities, and helps them meet and bond with other kids their age. Sometimes, campers are often further grouped into Builder Teams of 2-4 (depending on the project) to collaborate and work together on the more complex projects and challenges. Campers do have times throughout the day where they get to build on their own as well as free play as a whole group together.
If my child is attending camp with a friend, can they request to be grouped together?
You are welcome to send us requests, and we try our best to match up kids in the best groups for them to be successful at camp, sometimes that includes friends they came with and sometimes it does not.
Are lunch/snacks provided?
No. Campers will need to bring lunch with them each day, and they also need to bring a few extra snack items. We eat lunch at 11:30am, so if your child will be starving by that point, they will need to bring a snack for the morning, and the same goes for the afternoon (esp for our extended care campers). We don't have a specific snack break time but do allow campers to take snack breaks on their own as needed. We do sometimes provide a special treat at the end of the week for campers or give out popsicles on water day, and so ask that parents include all dietary restrictions on their child's registration/consent form.
Can campers bring home what they built?
Not typically. We try our best to use at least 50% reusable materials, so that MBC can support the efforts to reduce waste and emissions for the good of our planet. We also do many of our build projects as team builds which couldn't be taken home by just one camper. The way we celebrate their accomplishments and let them bring those memories home is with our End-Of-Week Slideshow. Our staff/(and campers too!) take lots of pictures with our camp cameras and we create a fun slideshow of memories to watch and enjoy at home. All campers get a link to download the slideshow to keep.
Do campers stay indoors or are parts of the day done outside?
We use multiple large air-conditioned rooms for parts of our camp day, and, weather permitting, head outdoors to our beautiful tree covered playground for lunch and free time each day from 11:30-12:30p. Certain activities will also be done outdoors under the covered walkways. We also have an outdoor water day event on Wednesday afternoons during our summer camp program.
Are there unstructured activity times?
Yes, we have found that putting unstructured time at different points in the day and week help our campers get the most out of the structured activities and projects we have plans. They always get at least 1 hour of free play outside each day, as well as free play times with our building materials at the beginning and end of the scheduled day.
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