Summer is approaching and for many parents it also means planning out your summer activities and getting your children involved in a camp program. Whether it be an all day, half day or stay away camp there are important facts to consider when choosing a camp program for your child.
- How will the commute (drop off and pick up location) affect your daily routine / work schedule? Many parents aren’t ready to allow their child to go to stay away camp programs until the age of 9 years old so this usually means choosing a local camp program. Be sure to choose one that is not too far out of your way commuting back and forth to work.
- Ask your child’s school guidance counselor for camp suggestions. Many times the schools are aware of local programs that would be great for your child.
- The internet is a great resource for searching for camp programs. Be sure to use specific terms when searching. For example; academic camp, dance camp, music camp or sports camps are great starts!
- Target activities – Be sure to consider your child’s interests when choosing a camp program. If your child interests are more in the arts or sciences, they may not enjoy a camp that is sports focused. Your child is more likely to have a great experience if you choose a camp that involved activities he / she will enjoy. Ask them!
- Safety First – Once you select a camp program, be sure to call and inquire about their safety and emergency plans. Is there someone on staff 24 hours a day to handle a medical emergency? Does the camp have emergency or natural disaster plans in place? What kind of safety assurance can they share with you (lifeguards, certified staff, background checks, etc).
- Camp sizes! Look at the camp enrollment size and how many camp counselors they provide per child ratio. Will your child like being in an environment with 200 other kids or would they prefer a smaller program with only 60?
- Visit the camp website to gather information and make a list of questions. Call the camp office and ask your questions. Is the person you are talking to friendly, knowledgeable and able to answer your questions? You can get a great sense of professionalism and organization by calling and speaking with camp personnel.
- Don’t over schedule your child. While camp is intended to be fun and adventurous, you don’t want to exhaust your child to the point they are too tired to participate the next day. Be sure to allow time for them to relax and just play without being on a schedule.