Summer camps can be a great learning experience

by Erin Gray [G+] | on 05th August 2013 |

Now that your kids are out of school for the summer you have probably heard “Mom,I’m bored” at least once. So what can you do to combat summer boredom without having to drag your kids all over town for a million different activities or finding a caregiver to watch them while you go to work? How about a summer camp?

Summer camps can be a great learning experience

Attending summer camp for a week or two can be a great learning and growing experience for your children. Summer camp can offer a lot of benefits for both you and your children notthe least of which is a break away from each other. If there is been some strain between yourself and your children a week apart from each other can be just what the doctor
ordered. A little space gives both you and your children a chance to put things in perspective. Many parents notice a change in their relationship with their children forthe better after a little time apart.

Of course time away from each other is not the ONLY benefit of sending your children to summer camp. Sending your child to summer camp also gives them the opportunity to make new friends and to develop some independence. Chances are your child may attend summer camp with one or two children that they already know, after all you may have heard about this great camp from one of your own friends. While attending camp they will meet new friends.

How can you not form lasting friendships with your fellow campers when you are living in such close proximity with them? Many children find that it is easier to make friends when they are away from school and the social expectations that they find there. At camp you don’t have the “popular” kids or the “nerdy” kids because for the most part no one knows anyone
else. Going to camp helps to encourage independence in your children. At camp children are encouraged to take care of their own needs with guidance from camp counselors. Even though there are set times for lights out and meals campers are responsible for getting themselves up and to the right place at the right time.

Particularly for children who are very attached to and dependent on their parent’s camp can offer an opportunity to rely on themselves and trust their own judgment. Attending a summer camp also gives children an opportunity to unplug from technology and get back to nature. In today’s busy modern world many children have what is commonly referred to as a “nature deficit”. Between school, homework, music lessons, and sports there just isn’t a lot of time to play outdoors and experience nature. Add to that the lure of video games, television, computers, and cell phones and many kids rarely ever set foot outdoors if they aren’t going from one activity to the next.

The camp experience allows time for children to both disconnect from their wired world and to re-connect with nature. Going to camp gives kids the opportunity to see wildlife in its natural habitat, take a walk in the woods, or take a boat out on the lake.When kids take a break from technology they are given the opportunity to rediscover the “real” world. They remember, or in some cases learn for the first time, about the art of face to face conversation.

Without electronic distractions children rediscover their creativity and realize that there is always something to do! Children who attend camp are also exposed to adventures they may not be exposed to anywhere else and they are encouraged to be physically active all day long. Where besides camp can you learn to shoot a bow and arrow, ride on horseback, learn to

canoe, and create your own ceramic pottery in one place?

All of these activities are supervised so you know that you your children will be safe, but camp exposes them to new opportunities and adventures. The activities mentioned above are only a few of the experiences your child might be given at camp. Going to camp also encourages children to be active. Instead of sitting in front of a computer or television all day
they are encouraged to run, play, swim, and hike. They might even discover they would rather be active at least some of the time even when they come back home.

The summer camp experience can also teach your child resiliency, help them experience success, and give them confidence. Because of the encouragement kids receive at summer camp it is a great place to try new things and realize that even if you don’t succeed the first time you can try again. They are encouraged to give things a try that they may be unsure of or even find a little frightening at first. Summer camp can also boost self-confidence because of its non-competitive atmosphere, unlike in school where there can be a push to be the “best” at sports or academics.

There are tons of summer camps that you and your children can choose from, and chances are there are several that are fairly close in proximity to your home. If your child has a particular interest in say dance, arts and crafts, or horseback riding you can often find camps that focus on those specific interests. Attending summer camp is a big deal and you should let your children be a part of the decision making process to find the right camp for them.

Most camps will allow you to take a tour and meet the counselors so that both parents and children can get a feel for the place. You want your children’s camp experience to be wonderful and exciting so letting your children visit first is a good idea. Start looking into camps now so that you can make arrangements for a fun filled summer before your children start telling you how bored they are! Some kids love the summer camp experience so much it is the highlight of their summer every year!

Video Source: Youtube

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