It is nearly summer vacation and for many kids that means heading off to summer camp. But for many, like mine, it means hanging out around the house all day. It can get to be quite monotonous and boring for kids.
My kids are addicted to technology but they also love the outdoors. At least, my girls do. Our son would be happy hanging in out in his room playing video games all day. So it’s up to Clay and me to toss him outside every now and then for some fresh air. Ok, we don’t actually toss him out but it does take some force to get him out of his room. Otherwise, we never see him.
Our girls? No problem. They love riding their bikes, playing basketball, running around the house, etc. Our oldest daughter has been begging year after year to go to 4H camp. There are so many fun things that take place. She would get to go swimming, horse back riding, learn archery, rope climbing, etc. She’d be with her friends and she’d be enjoying her summer. I think it’s a week long. So she’d really love it. In the past we weren’t able to send her but this year Clay and I hope to have enough money saved up to send her.
I have some tips and advice for you, that are being shared with permission, about just why summer camp is important for kids. Check ’em out!
It is no secret that many children spend too much time in front of the computer or television screen today and have little outdoors activity or interest in the natural world around them. According to research done by Psychology Today, camp makes kids resilient to daily life stresses and helps develop positive character traits in children. To encourage parents to take a more active role in getting their kids interested in and active in the outdoors, The Camping and Education Foundation created a list of reasons why it is beneficial for children to go to camp during the summer.
To try new things –
Unplug from technology –
Grow more independent –
Reconnect with nature –
To build character –
To learn to live in Community –
To slow down –
To fail and be okay with that –
Camp pushes children out of their comfort zone and exposes them to new activities and experiences that they may not be familiar with. Campers get the opportunity to try out different things and discover new hobbies or passions. By exploring various types of activities, children have a greater chance of finding something that they excel at or that makes them happy.
When kids take a break from TV, cell phones, and the Internet, they rediscover their creative powers and engage the real world— real people, real activities, and real emotions.
Camp is the perfect place for kids to practice making decisions for themselves. Managing their daily choices in the caring environment of camp, children welcome this freedom to blossom in new directions.
Camp is a wonderful antidote to “nature deficit disorder,” and to the narrow experience of modern indoor life. Outdoor experience enriches kid’s perception of the world and supports healthy childhood development.
On top of making new friends, campers also develop an appreciation for the qualities required to cultivate and strengthen these relationships. Camp provides children with the core values of a strong, moral individual by teaching them about ethics, honesty, caring, respect and responsibility. Parents frequently report that after camp, their children are more kind, understand the importance of giving, are more equipped to stand up for what they know is right, and are willing to be more responsible.
Camp lets children learn to live in community and do their share of the work. They experience that 80 people contributing a ½ hour towards tribe duties means one person doesn’t have to spend 40 hours doing what together they can so easily do each and every day.
Camp gives children the chance to slow down and enjoy day after day as part of the natural world. They walk the trails to the Great Lodge, to their cabins, to their activities, up and down the ridges, by the waterfront, through the beautiful woods, making the outside their home.
Without grades or tryouts, the pressure of succeeding is removed and children can play for play’s sake. They can try something and not worry about the consequences of not doing it perfectly or being the best. Having fun is good enough and trying things is better than standing on the sidelines afraid of failure.
About The Camping and Education Foundation
The Camping and Education Foundation’s mission is to develop young men and women in body and spirit through wilderness experiences that celebrate a love of the outdoors. This mission is as strong today as it was ninety years ago when Camp Kooch-i-ching first opened its doors on Deer Island. The Camping and Education Foundation owns and operates both Camp Kooch-i-ching and Ogichi Daa Kwe, two of the premier summer wilderness camps in North America. For more information, visit: www.campingedu.org.
Do you send your kids to summer camp each year?
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Crystal is a stay-at-home- mom, living in KY with her husband and children. She is a travel and lifestyle blogger encouraging folks to live their life one adventure at a time while also focusing on beauty, health and lifestyle. From time to time she also likes to showcase her adorable pets along with her family. Along with Cinnamon Hollow she can be found at The Martin Family Adventure … read more
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