You’re probably thinking to yourself, “Summer camp?! Hold on there, Tiger, we’re gearing up for winter. I have Christmas presents and snow shoveling to think about!” And that’s a fair reservation. However, we believe so strongly in the power of summer camps that we want to encourage you to start saving up for a camp experience for your child now. Whether it’s a day camp, a beach camp, or some other kind of themed program, camp can benefit your child in the following ways:
1. Socialization. Maybe you have one of those kids who is already the life of the playroom. Or maybe your child takes a little more prodding to join the fun. Wherever they fall on the introvert to extrovert spectrum, the fun activities and group learning often facilitated in a camp environment can do wonders in teaching your child how to get along with others. This is a skill that is important to develop early and practice often.
2. Physical activity. The Center for Disease Control recommends that all children get at lest one hour of physical activity in per a day. It is particularly important for them to strengthen bones and muscles at this stage, and develop good exercise habits early on in life. One way to accomplish this for your child is to enroll them in a summer program that offers fun activities centered around, well, activity. Some popular camp activities to look for include swimming, hiking, archery, and capture the flag. Not only will these sorts of fun activities build up your child’s health and strength, they will teach them how to be more capable in the wilderness.
3. Limiting the screen time. These days the average person spends over seven hours a day in front of a screen, whether that’s their phone, tablet, or the television. Some preliminary studies suggest that this sort of behavior leads to shorter attention spans and negative effects on mood. Enrolling your child in summer camp (many of which don’t have viable internet connection and discourage always being “plugged in,”) could be a great way to make sure they don’t succumb to this digitized obsession and remain connected to the real world.
Don’t wait. Start researching camps now so that you know what your savings goal is come next summer. And please, if anyone has any great camp recommendations, feel free to advertise in the comments section below.