Making summer plans for your kids?
Summer camp is a definite must for every kid. The amount of skills and learning experiences kids gain from camp make it the number one thing to pencil into your calendar this summer.
The University of Waterloo conducted the Canadian Summer Camp Project to research the effects summer camp can have on children. They conducted the study over 17 resdential and day camps across Canada and ended up observing over 1200 campers. The summer camp staff were told to observe each of the camper’s progress in five areas and rate it at the beginning of the session and again at the end. Overall, the study showed that summer camp is a beneficial part of every child’s development.
Looking at the study and several other summer camp resources, we compiled the seven best reasons to send your child to summer camp.
7. Teaches New Skills
Whether your child has just started a new hobby or has been doing the same activity for years, there are a variety of camp programs that can cater to their skill sets. These new skills will stick with them forever and often can’t be addressed in the classroom. The summer is the perfect time for your kids to be doing what they love while still learning. Programs like photography are not always addressed in schools so summer camps can give them the opportunity to explore and improve their skills.
6. Try New Things
Camp gives children the opportunity to step outside of their comfort zone and try new things. Most camps offer programs that kids can’t experience in every day life so it can be a great chance to expand their horizons. These programs give them the chance to experiment, make mistakes, and try again all in a safe, non-judgemental environment.
Photo by Aili | Kids Camp 1
Photo by Alvin | Teen Camp 1
5. Develop Confidence
Because camp offers the opportunity to try new things, it can be a huge confidence booster. When you try something new for the first time and it goes well or you work at it until you can do it, this makes a camper feel really good and really accomplished. Learning a new thing and succeeding at it is the best feeling. According to the Canadian Summer Camp Research Project, over 67% of the 1200 campers surveyed felt more confident by the end of their summer camp session. In a place where you’re constantly learning new things and receiving feedback from your peers, camp transforms kids into confident people.
4. Creates an Appreciation for the Outdoors
A key component of all summer camps is being outside all of the time. Even more urban summer camps have outdoor field trips and activities. This constant exposure to the outdoors allows for kids to appreciate nature in a new and fresh way. All camps involve some kind of exploring whether it’s a two day canoe portage or a walk through the most popular parks in Toronto. Nature appreciation is important to instill in children of every age.
3. Allows for Creativity
Whether you attend a normal residential summer camp or a camp with specialized programming, every camp allows for kids to express themselves creatively. Being creative and making their own decisions is important to their development as people and can help them later on in the job force. Creativity will be the third most important work skill by 2020 so allowing your children the ability to think creatively now will be a major asset to them in the future.
2. Expands Social Skills
A benefit of summer camp is that your kid can interact with new people that they don’t see on a regular basis. Your kids become familiar with the people they go to school with and aren’t regularly introduced to new people so camp offers the opportunity for them to go outside their usual environment and meet new people. According to the Canadian Summer Camp Research Project, 65% of campers were better at social interaction and had appeared to have made friends by the end of the camp session. Having good social skills is an important life skill so placing your child in an unfamiliar environment can help to improve their ability to socialize.
1. Lets Them Have Fun
Yes, camp teaches new things and can help your kid grow as a person and in their hobby but the most important thing about camp is that it lets them have fun and be kids. Summer is after all their break so they should be allowed to enjoy that. Camp teaches a lot and can be very practical but it also is a time to play games, joke around, and even get soaked with water balloons. Summer camp creates once in a lifetime memories that will stick with your child into adulthood because of all of the fun they had.