The National Building Museum’s exhibitions are temporarily closed until March 2020.
The Museum Shop remains open Mon–Sat 10 am–5 pm.

Summer Camp



Programs for Rising 2nd and 3rd Graders

Spend your summer at the National Building Museum! Explore the world we design and build through hands-on activities, projects, and field trips. Each summer camp session enrolls 16-18 campers, with two Museum Teachers per session. Summer Camp programs are one week long – sign up for one week or multiple!

For more information, please read our Summer Camp FAQs.  or visit our camp page.

International Starchitects – July 6–10

Are you an aspiring architect? Spend the week exploring the work of famous architects from around the world, and get inspired to create your own designs! Travel to South America, Asia, Europe, and Africa to explore historic and contemporary architecture. Utilize your new international design knowledge to design a building of your own that incorporates ideas from around the world.

Dream Home Designers – July 13–17, August 10–14

What does your dream home look like? Learn architecture and building basics, use mood boards, hand drawing techniques, and modeling materials. Explore how contemporary architects use green practices to make buildings sustainable and positively impact our health. Then, design and build a model of your own dream home. Decide what exciting, inventive, or unusual elements to include! We are offering two sessions of this popular Summer Camp program.

Urban Explorers – July 20–24

What do you do think a city needs? Get hands-on with the basics of city planning to learn about the urban environment of Washington, Investigate how city planners design transportation systems to get everyone where they need to be. Explore the engineering principles of bridges and skyscrapers by making your own models as a team. Learn about how public art works for and with local communities.

Cardboard Craze – July 27–31

Think like an engineer and designer to make and innovate, while learning about different types of structures and forces. Discover the pros and cons of cardboard as a building material and then put your engineering skills to the test through various building challenges. Design and build a chair completely out of cardboard, then build a dome and have a party with your friends. At the end of the week, work together in groups to build life-size structures.

Brick Bash – August 3–7

Experience the world of architecture through play. Using thousands of LEGO bricks, spend the week learning professional building techniques and participating in design challenges. End the week by creating your own Brickfilm, a stop motion animation using LEGOs. In small teams, write a story for your film, design and build your set, and record your final product, then host a viewing party!