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Girls First

Registration is now open!

At Madeira, we believe leadership and learning are active and experiential, joyful and personal. Girls First mixes the magic of Madeira sisterhood with leadership, community service, and immersive impactful learning on a subject your girl is passionate about. We use our sprawling campus as well as the Nation's Capital as both playground and classroom. Designed for Middle Schoolers (rising 6-9th grade), Girls First is part summer camp, part leadership institute, and part learning laboratory; combined to foster the intellectual, artistic, and practical growth of your girl in an integrated and holistic manner. 

Summer camp in 2021 will look a little different as Girls First will be offered as a Day Camp experience only. While we know this is disappointing for many families, we look forward to hosting your resident camper in 2022!

Safety is a cornerstone of Summer at Madeira. We are taking precautions to keep our campers and staff healthy, including increased cleaning measures, reduced capacities, adjusted program and operational procedures, and extended training for our seasonal and year-round staff. These updates will be in alignment with any requirements or recommendations established by the Center for Disease Control, the Virginia Department of Public Health, the American Camp Association, and The Madeira School.

Adherence to all safety procedures ensures that all campers get the summer camp experience they hope for. Thank you in advance for helping us keep camp healthy and fun.


Everything You Need to Know About Girls First

Rising 6th - 9th Grade

Above all – Girls First is serious, good, fun. Campers steward their experience from day one by choosing one of three camp program tracks at registration. These unique subjects are not typically something you will find within your school walls yet are all experience and vocations that young women are increasingly interested in pursuing as a hobby or even a career! Over the course of 10 days, campers will spend about one-third of their time focusing on this track, going deeper into the subject every day through field exploration, guest speakers, and real-life applications and hands-on learning. The rest of your time will be spent exploring campus with friends, trying the pool and the pond, challenging oneself on the ropes course and archery range, and getting involved in our girl-leadership experience. Above all, campers will have an invaluable chance for young women to experience a new place, develop close friendships, and learn from committed mentors.

Drop off for Girls First is from 8:30-9:00 am. Pick up for all programs is from 5:00-5:30 pm. Lunch and an optional late-night experience is included in the cost of camp. Late Night will be hosted for registered girls on the first Friday of their program and will include a dinner, bonfire, and other camp activities with pickup at 9:00 pm. Due to COVID-19, breakfast and dinner services are not included in Girls First programming for 2021; bus services are also not available at this time.

Dates Session


Program Price 
July 12- 16 and July 19-23 GF 1 9:00 am-5:00 pm Architecture & Design $1,800
July 12- 16 and July 19-23 GF 1 9:00 am-5:00 pm Global Culinary WAITLIST
July 12- 16 and July 19-23 GF 1 9:00 am-5:00 pm Vet Science WAITLIST

Program Descriptions

Architecture & Design

  • Do you dream of designing? Have you ever thought about what it would be like to be an architect? Spend two weeks exploring architecture and desing - from landscape to residential, and everything in between. Practice different architectural drawing skills like plan, elevation, and section drawings, design a room using SketchUp, and conduct a client interview for a re-design of a space on campus. Take the cardboard chair challenge to see if you and your team can design and build a functional chair entirely of cardboard, create and design accessories for your space at home (maybe a hand-dyed pillow, woven wall hanging, a lamp), and create a mood board where you’ll explore materials. Campers will end the week designing a scale model of a space of their dreams. Trips into the field will be scheduled as permitted.

Global Culinary

  • Are you the foodie of the group? Can you see yourself on Top Chef? Spend two weeks getting creative in the kitchen as you learn cooking basics and best practices such as kitchen safety, preparation techniques, workspace organization, nutrition, menu planning, and culinary vocabulary essential to any cook. You might learn to properly cut, slice, chop, sauté, roast, and caramelize an onion, try your hand at a blind taste test, and even develop your own recipe. You'll learn to cook for a variety of diets like vegan or gluten free as we explore culture and tradition through cuisine. At the end of the week, work together as a team to plan and execute a delicious lunch soiree – all cooked by you! Trips into the field will be scheduled as permitted.

Vet Science

  • Are you wild about animals or envision a career in veterinary medicine or animal science in your future? In Vet Techs you’ll learn about the fascinating, dynamic field of animal care as you explore biology and life science principles through the lens of dogs, cats, horses, and exotics like lizards or snakes. Your day will be packed with hands-on labs and activities as you learn what a veterinarian’s job entails. You will learn to assess animal vital signs, practice bandaging techniques, debate veterinary ethics, restrain animals, give injections, and analyze x-rays. You’ll have the chance to dissect and observe a variety of specimens such as frogs, nurse sharks, and worms to observe the skin, muscle, bones, and organs within. Campers end the week working through a real veterinary case from start to finish. Trips into the field will be scheduled as permitted.


Camper Checklist

Coming Soon!

Meet the Staff

Coming Soon!

Camp Questions?

Want more information about Summer at Madeira? Contact us at 703-556-8234 or email us.