Online Programs for Summer Camps

Our motto is "Camp No Matter What!" (Meghan Gardner of Guardian Adventures)

Summer Can Still Be Spent Together

The longevity of restrictions on social gatherings is still unknown but the possibility of hosting an amazing, hands-on, physically interactive summer camp is secure!

Guardian Adventures has created online programs for camps for your organization that provides everything you will need to host summer camp completely online or run the same program offline – any time during the year.

We have been hosting story-based STEM Summer Camps, weekly classes, themed birthday parties, and interactive events for 20 years in Massachusetts and now have online versions up and running.

You can even try a free training program for our Online Zombie Escape Room adventure (below) which you can run with your campers to test it out.  Just log into our training center and the learning platform will teach your staff how to run the adventure, step by step, along with all of the graphics, story elements, and training videos.



What Families Are Saying

“Simply put, Guard Up changed my life. From the first moment I stepped into the ‘tavern,’ to my last glimpse of the camp before I left, I was totally engulfed in the story, characters, and experience.” – Saul Rosenthal

“I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to the entire Guard Up staff for making online adventures possible. My son looks forward to both of his classes so much and for those couple of hours he is truly someone and somewhere else…SOMEPLACE MAGICAL where he’s an alchemist and every problem can be solved if you figure out the riddle.” – Elizabeth, mother of a #HomeboundHero


The Tools To Succeed

The world today is uncertain. Nobody was prepared for the changes our communities are facing… but there are solutions! Keeping business alive is imperative for organizations like yours struggling to provide engaging value to those who entrust you with their childrens’ summer experiences.

With our online programs for camps, you can stay committed, alongside camp organizations around the country, in offering your communities a tangible camp adventure. This will allow you to fulfill your objective of providing your campers with exciting programming while also offering more opportunities for new campers.

Your organization may not have the resources they need.

We provide them.

Your staff may not feel properly trained to tackle such an adaptation.

We train them.

We are here for you so you can be there for your community.

Our online training can give you the tools to run your summer camp – online or offline! 

Your training for the adventures utilizes the online learning platform Thinkific.com. This learning management system has everything that you’ll need to train your staff in both online and offline adventures through instructions, videos, quizzes, handouts, and more. There are also optional pre-written curriculum available for purchase if you don’t have time to create your own.



How Does It Work?

We started developing interactive online camp programs for the online environment well before the world came to a stop from the Coronavirus.  Over the past 20 years, we created a powerful game system for creating story-based adventures for campers. These adventures are based on exciting stories where the campers play the role of a hero who battles villains or monsters and solves mysteries using STEM and teamwork.

The system has been refined to such a degree that it can now be applied to any story you wish to explore.  It provides all of the rules of engagement with the campers, the antagonist and allies, 6 different story backdrops (think of these as the “universe” in which you run your adventure), and marketing materials for promoting your adventures.

We call this program the Universal Game System (UGS) and it can be run on  Zoom and/or Google Classroom platforms which allowed you to hold weekly classes and even full-day Summer Camp Adventures in an online environment.

The UGS isn’t just a system that you purchase… it’s an actual online course that teaches your staff how to create adventures and run them as well as providing digital slides, printable instructions, and marketing materials for promoting your adventures.

These are live, interactive adventures that are run by your counselors or instructors with your campers.  They are not pre-recorded videos,  animated environments, or video games.  So your campers and participants get the face-to-face experience and spend more time talking through or physically acting their responses instead of pushing buttons or moving a mouse.

If your camp ends up going offline and in-person, we have your camp covered there as well.
The Universal Game System has 2 versions: Online and Offline, so if you create a 2-week curriculum, run by your own counselors who are trained on our online platform, adaptation can be immediate. If the health department lets the camp go offline and in-person, your purchase also includes training on how to run the adventure in-person with your campers.

What Does The Universal Game System Include?

In short, the UGS includes everything you need to create and run an online or offline story-based program.

WE provide the training and YOU provide the story. (Don’t have the time or energy to create your own story? Check out our Pre-Packaged Story Add-Ons below.)

The Universal Game System package includes:

  • All the instructions needed for creating and performing an online, interactive and educational camp program run by your staff
  • All the instructions needed for creating and performing an in-person, offline version of the same camp program if campers are permitted to return to your facilities before the end of the summer camp season
  • Interactive online training in our Universal Game System and story backgrounds
  • Training videos for even deeper comprehension
  • Quizzes for your staff to confirm their understanding of the material
  • Certificate of Completion for each staff person
  • Online community for trading ideas and requesting support (Coming Soon)
  • Optional live training for your staff hosted by one of our instructors
  • Materials for marketing and promotion
  • A one year license for using the game system to create and use your own programming (license can optionally renew each year) for $495/year per location. You can also run programs in the off-season to help keep your campers engaged and interested.

Prepackaged Story Add-Ons (optional)

Zombies, fantasy characters, superheroes, friends of nature, and deep space explorers, unite!

After purchasing the Universal Game System you may decide you don’t want to take the time to come up with your own storyline and curriculum.  The good news is that purchasing the UGS gives you 50% off all pre-written story modules.

If you don’t have time to create your own curriculum and stories, we offer prewritten modules complete with instructions and STEM exercises available starting at just $30 per 2-3 hour module (not per camper) when purchasing 10 or more modules.

COMING SOON: An offline (in-person) version will be provided for each online version purchased. All pre-written stories are optional.

You can purchase modules for an entire camp, a single day, or even just a few hours to keep your campers socially connected, physically active, and mentally engaged.  Any module that you purchase can be run unlimited times as long as your license is current.

  • Wilderness Protectors
  • Medieval Adventure
  • Zombie Invasion
  • Superhero Universe
  • Spy Missions
  • Space Explorers
Wilderness Protectors

Wildlife Protectors are teaming up to save the animals!

Your team of conservationists are standing between a group of poachers and private collectors and their prey: Rare and endangered species.  You have to assemble and plan your tactics as you try to keep the poachers from devastating the animals you have sworn to protect.  But the clock is ticking!

Teaser for an example module entitled The Tower:

Medieval Adventure

Take up the mantle of knight, warrior princess, or fantasy creatures as we bring stories from the realm of medieval fantasy to life.

Step back in time with your friends and do battle like the noble warriors of times past. A fully costumed instructor will lead your party, dressed as a warrior from either medieval England or a fantasy realm from your favorite book. Kids are encouraged to wear costumes too, as they play fun interactive, and physically engaging games.

Teaser for an example module entitled The Tower:

Zombie Invasion

Braaaiiinnss…

Put together a team of your friends and attempt to survive a zombie apocalypse by stepping into Professor Professerton’s laboratory to meet pets unlike any other. Help the Professor with his mad science experiments, while keeping the Zombie Apocalypse at bay. You may just have to save someone’s life with a zombie antidote.

Teaser for an example module entitled The Tower:

Superhero Universe

Coming soon…

Grab your super suit because it’s time to save the world!

When a distress call is received, a lone defender appears to lead you and your friends through the City of SuperNova. SuperNova, once a superheroes capital, has now fallen victim to the clutches of an evil crime lord. On your journey to save the city, you’ll discover clues that will lead you and your team towards a dangerous discovery! One wrong turn and it could spell the end for your team of heroes or the city itself…

Kids are encouraged to wear their superhero costumes and have their superhero name chosen.

Spy Missions

Coming soon…

Save the world from the stealth of the shadows.

You receive the call. You are given the mission. You join your team of super stealthy sneaky spies. It’s time to prove that you’ve got what it takes to save the world from the forces of evil with nothing but a few gadgets, your wits, and your fellow adventurers at your side. Welcome to your spy mission online!

Space Explorers

Coming soon…

Explore space while trying to create human establishments on other planets.

Your team of spaceship pilots, engineers, crew, and terraformers are searching far away planets to create human habitats.  Create your mission plan and flight path, dodge asteroids and system failures, battle the rugged planet environments, and troubleshoot technology problems that could end your mission.  Not to mention a group of independent space pirates intent on looting your efforts before you accomplish your objective….

What If I’m Able To Have Campers Return To Offline In-Person Camp?

There is still the chance that a live summer camp experience can happen this year which is why our Universal Game System includes an offline, live version for no additional charge. Our fully immersive live story-based summer camps have been running for twenty years and were created using our one of a kind game design system, so we know it works both online and offline.

Note: Even though our offline camps involve the use of foam swords and NERF blasters, we recognize that not every camp wants that type of engagement, so our curriculum provides other components that don’t involve physical sparring.

Our most popular live camps look a little something like this…

Learn more about our Wizards & Warriors STEM Summer Camp

Learn more about our Zombie STEM Summer Camp

Learn more about our Teen Blackwatch STEM Summer Camp 

Learn more about our Little Knights STEM Summer Camp for ages 5-6 


What Do I Tell The Camper’s Parents?

We have assembled an FAQ here for some of the questions we have received from parents and that helps them to understand the importance of Online Summer Camp. If you are purchasing the Universal Game System, feel free to use the below text to help communicate with your parents about their options.

  • FAQ
FAQ
  1. How is Online Summer Camp any different than Online School (which is not fun for my student)?

Online Camp has very little in common with Online School.  Most importantly is that our counselors (many of whom are teachers) and our programs are designed to put fun ahead of education… and engagement ahead of information.  As such, our online adventures are more like a computer game in that the camper has autonomy, a tangible sense of progress, and the companionship of their friends as they navigate the story.  As well, we have breakout rooms for smaller groups and new policies that will allow campers more freedom to communicate with each other, as long as their conduct is appropriate.

  1. How is Online Summer Camp any different than playing computer games all day?

These are just a few of the ways that our Online Summer Camps are better than computer games:

  • Our adventures are live and face-to-face.  What this means is that your camper isn’t playing games with computer generated avatars, but instead, real people in real time.

  • Computer games cannot adapt to a player’s needs.  Our staff are engaged with your camper and available to address their questions and concerns.

  • A computer game won’t monitor your child’s interactions and keep you in the loop.  When campers are in separate rooms, there will be counselors there with them.  If campers are experiencing conflict with each other, our staff are there to assist.

  • A computer game won’t let your camper meet and make new friends face-to-face.  We have already had a number of our campers make new friends online and their parents connected with each other so that they could continue socializing online after the camp was over.

  • Computer games won’t get your camper involved in activities away from the screen in order to make progress in the adventure.  Our campers are building props, costumes, and doing physical activities to help change the outcome of the story.

  • Our adventures provide a leadership experience for your older teens in our Online CIT program where they play characters and help run the plot for the kids.  This kind of responsibility and performance is a good addition to their job or college application.

  1. What about Screen Fatigue?

Our campers have not reported Screen Fatigue from a full day of online camp.  This is largely because the adventures are inspirational and exciting instead of draining and boring (like some Zoom meetings for work that parents may have experienced).  As well, we have many opportunities to get the campers up and out of their chairs with physical activities that help move the story forward.  Exercise plays a big part of keeping campers mentally sharp and involved.  We also have scheduled breaks to allow campers to socialize with each other and eat meals. If you are still concerned about screen fatigue, please see our new Half-Day version listed in #6.

  1. Why do I need online camp when my child can just go outside and play this summer?

We remember being a child and spending our summer days outside, romping around with our friends, riding a bike to the swimming pond, and going to sleep-overs.  Unfortunately, many of these activities will be severely limited if not impossible this summer.  There will be limits on the size of group gatherings for a while and some of your child’s friends may not be available for in-person socializing.  Swimming facilities are not expected to open this summer and sleep-overs may not be the best option if the CDC is still requiring a level of physical distancing.  The summers we remember fondly will not be the summer of 2020.

  1. How will you keep my camper engaged for the duration of the day?

Our Online Camp mimics our Offline Camp with plenty of opportunities to roleplay, battle monsters, solve mysteries, and meet new characters.  Costuming is still a part of our online camp experience and we do encourage campers to attend dressed as their characters.  There are scheduled breaks throughout the day as well as many activities to get our campers up and out of their chairs and moving around.

  1. What enrollment options do you have?

You can enroll your child in the following program types:

  • Full Day (Mon-Fri 9a-3p)

  • Extended/Quest Day (Mon-Fri 8:30a-6:00p)

  • “Overnight” (Mon-Fri 9a-9p with a dinner break from 6p-7p)

  • NEW: Half Day (Mon-Fri 9a-11:30a)

Try Out An Adventure For Free

NEW: We have released free version of our Online Zombie Adventure for you to test out.

Yes, you can even run it for your own camp and see how you like it. If this looks like something you can use for your online camp, then we have much more where that came from.

This is a free preview course where you will learn how to run an interactive story-based online adventure for your attendees. We have also created an offline version so that you can see how the two relate.

What this adventure provides:

  1. Instructions on how to run your own Online and Offline Zombie Adventure along with step-by-step written instructions and a video that walks you through the adventure.
  2. All of the images and audio for making your adventure immersive and exciting
  3. Marketing materials such as a digital flyer and banners to help you promote your adventure to your campers
  4. How to use Zoom instructional video explaining how use Zoom to run the adventure

What this adventure does NOT provide but what IS provided in our Universal Game System:

  1. MANY more skills for the campers to choose from
  2. Classes such as Scientist, Wizard, Doctor, Warrior, Security, Healer, etc for the campers to help define their character – which improves their sense of autonomy.
  3. Groups (divisions or houses) which help your campers self select into according to their style of play – which improves their feeling of belonging to something bigger than themselves.
  4. Skill advancement options which allow your campers to get more skills and be stronger over time – which improves your retention by giving campers a sense of progress.
  5. MANY more assets, visuals, and instructions which help you to create up to 6 versions of the same adventure: Fantasy, Wilderness Protectors, Zombie, Spy, and Superhero
  6. Offline versions for all of the above which explain how to run these versions at offline, in-person camps.
  7. And of course, the option to purchase pre-written modules which provide step-by-step instructions for running the adventure both online and offline along with all necessary materials for the game and for marketing.

Our objective is to help you see how stories and gamification can be used to create a more immersive and engaging program – both online and offline. If you are able to present this program successfully, we recommend purchasing our Universal Game System.

NOTE: Since our adventures have a game mechanic, if you have a staff person who is a gamer, they would be the best person to take the course and run it. Gamers innately understand how game mechanics and stories interact and they may comprehend how to run an adventure with more ease and efficiency.  However, we do provide step-by-step instructions in case you are not a gamer.

Please visit (or have your gamer visit) our Complimentary Online Zombie Adventure to register and learn how to run your own 2-hour event for your campers.


Be sure to join our mailing list for camp professionals on any updates to our programs and on how to move your camp online as well as offline:

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Webinar: How To Run An Online Camp

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