Summer camp helps children discover who they are. Each camp is a hands-on learning opportunity that gives kids the chance to explore new activities and interests. From summer camp springs new hobbies, knowledge and solid life experiences. Beyond learning about the outdoors, science or animals, camp is also an excellent way for kids to develop top-notch social skills. But with so many out there, how do you know which one will be the best fit for your little one? Here are some things to consider when hunting for the perfect summer camp for your child:
Summer camps can get pricey, but that doesn’t mean that you need to spend a fortune to find a quality camp. Before you even begin looking, determine your summer camp budget. Figure out exactly how much you’re willing to spend and look only within your price range. Many go for a few hundred per week, but some can get into the thousands for just one week of camp. Determine your budget to find a summer camp for your child that you can afford.
Camp is a great opportunity to learn about new topics and get excited about them. That’s why it’s important to choose a camp that aligns with your little one’s passions. If they love running around, playing games, look into a sports camp. If they’re more into painting and coloring, search for art-themed camps. These days, there are camps out there for just about every type of activity so you should be able to find one that aligns well with your child’s interests.
Day camps are a great option for parents who have to work all summer. During the school year, your child may have needed before or after school care, but now that it’s summertime, you’re looking for all-day options. Camp is a great alternative, at least for a week or two. Camps come in all shapes and sizes when it comes to schedules, from overnight to day camps to half-day camps. So you can select one that best fits your scheduling needs.
Before committing to a camp, you may want to visit with the camp staff, or at least give them a call on the phone. You can even read up on online reviews. Since you’re trusting these counselors with your child, you want to make sure they’re both fun and reliable.
To begin the summer camp hunt, visit MomTrusted.com!
-Photo courtesy of Worakit Sirijinda/freedigitalphotos.net
This video with Kathleen Bryan, 4C for Children, includes information on selecting quality before and after school care as well as summer camps for school age children.
Things to consider:
Supplies and Equipment
- variety of age appropriate choices that include games, arts and crafts, sports, and dramatic play
- be aware of outdoor and indoor environment
- should have enough materials so children do not have to wait to use them
The program should be balanced by activities that are lead by adults and activities that are child initiated (i.e. opportunities for children to choose their own toys, have time to read, listen to music, talk with friends, or just hang out by themselves).
- staff should have training on how school age children learn and grow
- understand that activities should be interesting, fun, and challenging
- allow school agers to work together on projects and encourage them to solve problems
- should be role models for your school age child
- energetic while maintaining a safe environment
- should be flexible and fun