10 Reasons Your Child Should Experience Summer Camp
I remember heading to Girl Scout camp when I was a kid. I have great memories of summer camp, including those of nature, making new friends and enjoying new experiences. This past year, my parents found a great elementary age summer camp to send Brian, Dallen and Sam to and they were super excited! It was a great experience for all of them! This summer, 5 of our kids will be able to go to the same camp (Camp Ocean Pines in Cambria, California), but for a few more days (including a trip to Big Sur), and our oldest will go on a teen trip to Santa Cruz.
I must admit that I was a little nervous at first because the boys had never attended this camp before or been away on a trip for that long without one of us parents being there. However, as soon as I entered the campground, I knew they would be safe and in good hands. Not to mention the fact that they were so excited to explore and get settled in. It didn’t take long for them to start making new friends.
When we arrived, we were directed to a parking lot and given directions on where to go to check in. We headed to the main lodge to check in and the boys were given their camp shirts and told what cabin they were in and who their counselor was. They couldn’t wait to head up to the cabins. It was a little bit of a hike up to the cabin, but I think us grownups were the only ones who noticed – ha ha!
As soon as we entered the cabin area, the boys headed to their assigned cabins. I was really impressed by the fact that the counselors were waiting to greet them when they walked through the door of the cabin. Each cabin had children of the same gender and around the same age, so that was cool too.
Being a blogger, I love to share about our family‘s experiences. I loved that Camp Ocean Pines kept us up-to-date on a daily basis and even shared pictures of our kids during their camp experience (updating them every night for us to see and share). I literally felt like I was there with them…and it looked like they were constantly experiencing unforgettable adventures! I think summer camp is great and wanted to share 10 Reasons Your Child Should Experience Summer Camp.
10 Reasons Your Child Should Experience Summer Camp
1 – Make New Friends. Our boys loved summer camp and one of the things they really loved were the friendships they made. In fact, my oldest still texts with a few of the boys from his cabin. The younger ones didn’t really keep in contact via text, but they enjoyed hanging out with the kids at camp. It’s definitely a great way to make lifelong friends!
2 – Learn New Skills. At Camp Ocean Pines, the boys got to do so many different activities! At summer camp, the boys were able to learn and participate in a variety of target sports, including archery, tomahawks and slingshots.
3 – Get Creative. I remember going to Girl Scout Camp when I was younger and all of the activities we did. It involved a lot of fun crafts and creations. I was excited to see that our kids were getting some of those same types of experiences at summer camp! They got to make tie-dye shirts, friendship bracelets, bottle rockets and more. They even learned how to throw their first pizzas!
4 – Enjoy Nature. One of the best things about summer camp is enjoying nature and the good old outdoors! At summer camp, the boys got to go to the beach and learn about sea life. They even got to hold a live snake! Dallen was very excited to talk about his experience holding the snake!
5 – Build Confidence. At Camp Ocean Pines, they had a number of activities that helped kids build their confidence, as well as have fun at the same time! One of those was the giant rope swing. I know I would have been nervous to do it and was so proud to see pictures of the boys doing it!
6 – Be Yourself. In every day life, our kids have so many expectations for them. They have to do well in school, whether they’re attending a a private school, a public school, or catholic school. There are constant expectations (which is much like life for everyone), however, at camp, they get a chance to be themselves. They even get to choose which activities they want to do on each of the days they are at camp!
7 – Develop Team Building Skills. I love that Camp Ocean Pines had a lot of team building activities. They had an obstacle course, complete with a wall in which they helped one another get through. I really enjoyed seeing the pictures of the kids helping one another! I think that even them staying in the cabins with other kids helped them develop team building skills. Their cabin friends and counselor became like family for the week.
8 – Escape Technology. In this day and age, our kids (and us as adults) are constantly surrounded by technology. From our phones to our computers to even our vehicles, there is technology everywhere. At camp, the kids did not bring their cell phones or handheld video games. I was worried they would get bored, but there were so many activities for them to do and they had tons of fun without the use of electronics!!! They loved hanging out in the hammocks and climbing the rock wall!
9 – Learn Independence. I have to admit that I was a little nervous about leaving the boys somewhere other than home for more than an overnight stay. They were away from me and I wanted to make sure they were going to be. While our kids took to being on their own pretty easily, for others, it helped them to learn independence and how to be away from mom and dad. Some of the campers even consoled one another when they were sad and missing their families. I definitely give kudos to all of the camp staff and counselors for helping the kids to feel comfortable and at home while away from home!
10 – Get a Break from Mom and Dad. This one is kind of hard for me to say (only because I’m an adult), but I remember being a kid and this was one of the perks of summer camp! Kids love going and being with other kids their age. It’s even better when it’s camping in a nice cabin, making new friends, eating good food and being kept busy with fun activities that create lifelong memories! Summer Camp is definitely an experience every kid should have – and even better if they can experience it over and over again! I’m really glad my parents discovered Camp Ocean Pines and can’t wait to share this upcoming Summer’s experiences with you!
A big thanks to Camp Ocean Pines for the use of the majority of these pictures from our kids’ camp experiences!
Do your kids go to summer camp?
Did you go to summer camp when you were a kid?