You have a school-aged child and you are thinking about kids summer camp because school is out. You want a good kids summer camp program for your child. You are not alone. There are nearly 31,000 private schools in the United States, which serve 5.3 million students ranging in age from preschool to 12th grade. And according to the American Camping Association, over 8 million kids attend summer camp in the U.S. each year.
A good kids summer camp provides your child with continued socialization, fun in the sun, and learning outside of the school classroom. In fact, part of what your child will learn at a kids summer camp is life skills. Let’s take a look at some life skills your child will learn at summer camp.
Five Life Skills That Can Be Learned at Summer Camp
This list is not exhaustive. Depending on your child, the camp staff, counselors and length of the program, your child will learn these skills as well as others.
- How to live with others outside of family. This is not insignificant as your child does not get this opportunity as many other times during the school year. Children actually live with each other at camp and must learn how to navigate social situations not normally encountered outside his or her own family.
- Conflict resolution. Part of what your child will encounter at camp is conflict. Conflict is a reality of life and your child will learn to respectfully address concerns with their camp mates with the help of good counselors who will create a safe environment in which to learn this important life skill.
- Listening skills. Listening to others is a part of conflict resolution; it is also helpful to know how to listen in any situation. Listening to others is perhaps one of the most important skills any child (or adult) can develop.
- Accountability. At camp, a prevailing atmosphere of mutual trust seems to permeate the air. Trust is an easy thing to break and a difficult thing to repair or regain. Therefore, accountability plays an extraordinary role in the camp experience. If you tell your camp mates that you’re going to wake them up early so they can look for bear tracks, you can’t let them down.
- Selflessness. In an environment defined by interpersonal interaction and relationship building, selfishness does not breed a healthy campsite. The power of selflessness to overcome selflessness is powerful and highly valued among peers, counselors, and others. It’s also contagious.
Life skills learned and strengthened at summer camp are an important part of your child’s development. They’re also an aspect of camp that will not leave them, no matter how many years will have passed.