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Archive for the ‘Summer Camps’ Category

Choosing A Summer Camp

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

Summer Camping are perhaps the best way for students to spend their summer holidays. Summer camp programs include ordinary sports and educational camp programs to adventure tripping camps for teens, youth, and youth groups. If you are considering having a summer camp, keep the following things in mind

1. When? – Most camps are not going to be offered every week of the summer. With that in mind, construct your summer calendar with major milestones such a family vacations, house guests, etc. to give you an idea of the weeks that you won’t want to have your child(ren) in summer camps. This gives you a starting point of available summer camp weeks.

2. Where? – How far are you really willing to drive every day? Will you be driving during rush hour? Will the location and schedule fit with your own work/family schedule during the summer? Are their siblings’ schedules to consider? Can you share carpooling with a friend who will also be attending the camp?

3. Format – Half-day, full-day, sleep-away? For a child new to summer camps, start with a half day camp and see if your child can handle the pace. Kids who are used to going to school all-day may think full-day camps are a breeze but younger children may be too tired to enjoy them, no matter the content.

4. Content – The variety of camps is endless. Sports, science, art, music and educational pursuits can all be found. Multidimensional camps that combine different sports or activities are another great option if you or your child can’t decide or if their interests vary. Trying something new may uncover a hidden talent or interest.

5. Cost – If you are on a budget, some camps may not be an option. However, in most cases camps are priced based on staffing credentials, program content, services offered and reputation. One week at a higher-priced well-run camp may be worth two weeks at a lower-priced camp.

6. Reputation – Tip: If you find a camp you REALLY want your child enrolled in, find out when enrollment opens and sign up as soon as you can. Many of the popular camps fill up quickly. Check and see if the camp’s website will send out email notifications about registration dates. If you are too late, take advantage of their waitlists.

7. Services offered – Are the “extras” like extended care before and after camp or on-site lunches important to you?

8. Friend availability – Many times parents will choose a camp based on an invitation by a friend. As a parent, this can be a great thing if you can share carpooling duties. It also ensures that your child knows at least one person in the camp.

Finding the Right Summer Camp for Your Children

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Finding the right Summer Camp for your kid is incredibly important because these things shape the lives of our children and lead to lasting and profound memories that your child will cherish for the rest of their life. There are very good summer camps and there are very bad summer camps and finding the right one is incredibly important and that’s what I would like to talk about in this article today.

The first question you need to ask is how does the camp handle troublesome children. Watch the director after you ask this question because if they hesitate they may not have an official policy in place. Look for the camp that involves the camp director as well as a camp counselor, and also the parents when dealing with troublesome children. Also make sure they have a written policy that spells out exactly what they will do and how well it is enforced.

The next question to ask is this… what percentage of camp counselors were previous campers at this? This is a fantastic question to ask because if more than 50% of the counselors in the past were campers themselves then it’s a very good indication that the camp’s culture is positive. It is not out of line for you to ask for the names and phone numbers of several counselors. Call up the counselors and talk to them and ask about their different backgrounds and aspirations.

Another wonderful question is how does the camp deal with homesickness? Kids, especially younger kids get homesick when they go to camp especially if it’s their first time away from home. Many places have a specific counselor who only deals with homesickness, especially if it’s a larger facility. Many counselors try to make sure that the children fit into groups and become engaged with the group and their activities as a way to stamp out homesickness. However the camp does it, it’s important that they have a plan to address this very thing.

Finally you should always ask how the staff has been trained. This does not have to be extensive training, but it should be several days worth of training at the very least. Many camps don’t train their counselors at all but instead give them a quick intro course that may last a couple of hours and you want to probably stay away from these type of places.