Summer camp is an environment where children can develop their confidence, sense of independence and improve their self esteem. It is important to set your children up for success. This can be done by doing the following prior to camp.
1. Allow your children to pack their own bag. If parents pack their children’s bag the child doesn’t know what’s in it. Children need to go through the camp checklist and check off the needed items after they are put in their bag.
2. Make sure your child has a water bottle. Put your child’s name on their water bottle so it can be returned if lost.
3. If your child is on medication to regulate behaviour at school they should be on it at camp. Camp can be an extremely rewarding experience, however it can also be overwhelming. Children who are medication at school do better if they are on their medication at camp.
4. Don’t take your child off medication prior to a week of camp. Detoxing at camp is not recommended.
5. Don’t start a new diet/detox prior to camp. We buy all our food before to camp. Quite often we find out during camp from the child that they are
dairy-free/gluten-free/vegetarian. This information must be disclosed on the registration form and the option must be paid for. If a child is truly gluten sensitive we want them to be healthy, however if they can eat gluten at home they can eat gluten at camp. Gluten-free food is expensive.
6. PACK APPROPRIATELY – Would you believe that sometimes children get dropped off for resident camp without bathing suits, shampoo, or underwear? When packing for summer camp, take care to follow the camp’s suggested packing list. The professionals that direct your child’s camp consider camp’s terrain, weather, and activities while writing
that list. Everything is on it for a reason!
7. LABEL EVERYTHING – I can guarantee that your child will lose something and completely forget they ever owned it. It makes a Camp Counselor’s life simpler when they can easily find a name on abandoned shorts, flashlights, and toiletries. And those expensive iron-on labels? Kids LOVE to peel them off! Nothing works better than a Sharpie
8. BE OPTIMISTIC – Parents who feel nervous or hesitant about camp unintentionally transfer those feelings to their children. It’s best to remain positive, optimistic and encouraging while preparing your camper for their stay.
9. DROP-OFF AND PICK UP YOUR CAMPER ON TIME – Camp begins the moment drop-off time ends. If your camper arrives late, she may miss out on choosing a bunk or playing community-building games. It’s best for kids to arrive during the designated drop-off time. Often, children feel self-conscious and emotional when they are dropped off too late.
10. GET TO KNOW CHILD’S COUNSELOR – When I hire my summer camp staff, I consider their skill set, references, maturity, and qualifications. I ask myself, “Would I trust this person with my very own children?” Your child’s Camp Counselor is an interesting, energetic, and bright young person. Shake their hand, introduce yourself, and ask a few
11. KEEP DROP-OFF SHORT AND SWEET – Counselors have been well-trained to take it from the point you have said your good-byes. Long, drawn-out goodbyes often make kids feel anxious. Through camp, kids are given the opportunity to reconnect with nature, develop life-long friendships, conquer fears, challenge themselves, and grow confidence. It’s a great experience for the entire family!
We want all our campers to be successful. We find that when we work along side parents and have parental support we are able to help our campers be successful, happy campers.