Summer is a time for children to relax and get away from the stress and hectic nature of the school year. As the saying goes “no more pencils, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks.” Homework is sacrificed for time outside and classmates are now friends to hang out with during those lazy summer days. However, summer can be a time that is both fun and productive, with the many summer camps that are offered providing ample entertainment and great learning experiences for a child with any interest.
By the end of the break, your child will be a stronger individual – with increased team-building skills, lifelong friends and unforgettable memories. Choosing the perfect summer camp can be tough. The most important decision to make in choosing the best summer camps are – sleep away vs. day camps. Day camps often take kids from around 9 to 5 pm (the typical workday for the average adult) and involve outings such as trips to pools, museums and the movies.
Sleepaway camps are a bit different. They mostly take place outside on campgrounds set up for the occasion and heavily rely on carefully planned out outdoor activities. They usually last for around a week or two, but some can go almost all summer depending on the program you choose. An important thing to do before making the choice is to sit your child down and have a serious discussion about what both of you want out of the summer camp experience. What is your child looking to gain? What do you want them to gain? If you’ve previously attended a summer camp maybe look into its recent programs, and try to give your child the same life-changing experience you had as a youngster.
If it is a sleepaway camp, make sure your child feels comfortable with being away from home for an extended period of time and assure them that you are merely a phone call away if there is ever any trouble. Also, determine what kind of size you are looking for in a camp – do you want your child to bond with a small group of individuals or thrust them into a larger environment?
Be sure to research the costs of the camps you are considering, because prices vary considerably. Day camps are usually only a few hundred dollars, especially if you choose to place your children in programs held by the local Y or other nonprofit organizations. Sleepaway camps can be a bit more expensive. One week usually costs around $500 and for a full summer season, the cost can be anywhere between $3500 and $11000 depending on the quality of the camp and the activities it provides. Most camps usually put a heavy emphasis on outdoor sporting activities as a way of increasing team-building skills and getting people to feel comfortable around another. These include standard sports such as basketball and baseball, but outdoor camps usually employ activities such as zip lines and relay races to enforce the idea of trusting your other campmates.
Many camps offer performing arts programs where campers engage in rigorous preparation for a performance at the end of the summer, usually crafting the sets and putting together the production all by themselves. Academic camps can help your child get ahead in the competitive academic world and prepare them for the challenges that the next school year might present.
These are just a few of the things you should consider when selecting a summer camp for your child. Regardless, it is sure to be a great experience they won’t soon forget. The memories they make at camp will live in their hearts forever, and they will have you to thank. Select the perfect camp today!