Summer vacations are one thing most kids look forward to. School is out, which means a lot of free time for playing and other activities. To help your kids make the most of their vacation, you may want to consider an excellent childcare option for the summer months – a summer camp program. Summer camps provide campers not just enjoyment but also fond memories and valuable skills. Camps also provide opportunities for kids to reconnect with other kids and build friendships and character. Since there is an abundance of summer programs available, choosing the right one for your little one may be challenging. If you are thinking about sending your child to a summer camp, here are some helpful tips to follow to make the selection process easier and manageable.
Define your goals
Before picking the right summer camp, it’s important that you define the goals that you want to achieve by sending your child to a summer camp program. Identify the things you want your child to gain from the experience. Do they need to learn new skills? Do they need to develop social skills and independence? Do you want them to meet and establish connections with kids who share the same interests? Also, it is essential that you consider your kids’ interests to make sure you are sending them to a summer camp they will love.
Find the right program
Once you know what you want your kids to gain from the summer program, it’s time to look for the programs that will meet those needs. There are summer camps that have traditional activities – building tents, campfires, learning archery and so on. There are also the academic camps that are focused on skill building and academic learning even outside of school. They offer course areas that provide a perfect balance between fun and hands-on education. Academic camps are an excellent option for children who have a hard time with traditional instruction. They provide the campers the chance to focus on one specific activity that will develop a skill over the duration of the camp. There are also summer programs focused on arts, sports, adventure and a lot more. Explore the different areas of focus for each summer camp program and find the one that will serve your child’s needs best.
Consider the experience
When choosing a summer program, some of the things parents look into are the camp setting, facilities and location. While these things are important, make sure to look beneath the surface. Consider the experiences your child will gain from the activity. A good summer program provides opportunities for children to discover new things by trying unfamiliar activities. Consider how the program is going to contribute to your child’s future endeavors. Will it help in their personal development? Will it develop certain skills they will be able to use in their future studies or career?
Do your research
A research will help you dig up more information about summer camp programs. Do some online research and check for reviews. Or better yet, talk to your peers and other parents and ask for feedback and recommendations. Interview those who have also sent their children to summer camps. Ask them about the experiences their kids gained from the activities, as well as the skills they have learned.
Talk to camp directors
The information you can get online may be limited, so talk to camp directors themselves. You can ask the camp directors about anything and everything about their summer programs. Create a list of important questions you want to ask and include the following:
- What are the goals and philosophies of your program?
- What unique features does your program offer?
- How do your counselors get the campers engaged and motivated?
- How are these new skills being taught and fostered?
- Does your program recognize and award success? How?
Summer camps provide an excellent opportunity for kids to not just have fun, but also develop valuable skills and a sense of independence. If you are interested in sending your child to a summer camp, these tips may help you select the best summer camp program for them. And if you’re looking for a childcare provider that nurtures a child’s holistic growth and development, please consider our Langhorne preschool.