Our mission: create a world of
fearless innovators

Something powerful happens at Galileo that doesn’t happen at other camps. Sure, kids have fun. They have a lot of fun. They come home glowing, grimy and wiped out.

But amidst the frenzy, they also learn something with the potential to change them—and the world—profoundly. They learn how to fail. Not in a humiliating or dispiriting way. But in a self-assured way, that helps turn them into hardy, risk-taking creators and problem-solvers.

Multiply that inversion times thousands of kids every summer and you have Galileo’s audacious mission—to nurture and inspire a daring new generation of fearless innovators.

Armed with an innovation process inspired by the Stanford d.school, Galileo instructors facilitate campers’ hands-on exploration of science, art and outdoor activities. Behind every activity, an idea. And a mindset—visionary, courageous, collaborative, determined, reflective.

In pre-K, campers may build a crude xylophone or design a lion mask. By 8th grade, they may program their own video game, design their own fashion line, or breathe life into some creation entirely of their own invention.

The products are cool. But the by-products—supreme confidence and a boldness of vision worthy of our camp’s patron saint—are what will eventually rock our world.


Our secret sauce: the Galileo Innovation approach

We’re on a mission to develop innovators who envision and create a better world. We do it by teaching campers to understand and apply the Galileo Innovation Approach—or the “G.I.A.,” as we sometimes like to call it.

The GIA is inspired by the innovation process developed at the Stanford d.school. We took some of their fundamental ideas, added our own, then adapted it for kids from pre-K through 8th grade, when they’re especially open to absorbing new ways to think, explore and create.

These are the three components of the Galileo Innovation Approach:


1. The Innovator's mindset: how Galileo innovators approach the world

I am Visionary

  • I envision a better world
  • I imagine things that don’t exist yet
  • I believe it’s my place to turn ideas into reality

I am Courageous

  • I freely share my creative thoughts
  • I stretch myself to try new things
  • I embrace challenges

I am Collaborative

  • I value the unique perspectives of others
  • I build on the ideas of others
  • I use my strengths to support the work of others

I am Determined

  • I persevere until I achieve my goal
  • I recognize setbacks as opportunities to learn
  • I know that innovation and mastery require effort

I am Reflective

  • I take time to think about what is and isn’t working in my design
  • I think about how my work impacts other people and the world
  • I seek feedback to improve myself and my work

2. The Innovator’s Knowledge:
What Galileo innovators need to understand

Concepts and Facts:

  • The big ideas, principles and facts relevant to their work

Historical Context:

  • The contributions of relevant movements, artists, scientists, designers and other experts who came before them

Skills and Techniques:

  • How to use materials, tools and technology that allow them to effectively create, test and share their ideas

Audience and Environment:

  • The needs and circumstances of their users and the physical context in which their work will be received

3. The Innovator’s Process:
How Galileo innovators innovate