Summer’s here, and what better way to celebrate than participating in something new and exciting? There are so many different summer camp opportunities for children, from music camp to sports camp to cowboy camp, and even camps for children with certain disabilities. With any of these options, they can learn about themselves, grow as individuals, and make lifelong memories and friends.
Summer camp can be a fun and exciting time, but it can also present some challenges. Your child may be anxious to leave the house for a while, or they may be nervous about learning something new and stepping out of their comfort zone. It’s an important job for you as a parent to prepare your child as best you can, so they can feel comfortable and succeed at summer camp.
Explain That Missing Home is Okay
After the excitement of the first two or three days of camp wears off, your child may start to miss home a little bit. It’s important to let them know it’s okay to miss the normalcy and routine of home life and family. Try packing a little surprise in their suitcase so they find it at the most random time and smile. Send along family photos so they don’t feel alone. Before they leave, make something fun they can take with them to remind them of their excitement for camp, as well as the good memories created while preparing for this special time in their lives. Reassuring your child that they’re going to have a great time will hopefully make them feel more at ease with the whole process.
Talk About Your Own Summer Camp Experiences
If you or your significant other went to summer camp, talk about those experiences – the good and the bad. Explain what you did during camp time and how you felt in some of those situations. This allows your child to feel excitement and anticipation before they head off to their own summer camp experience. It also shows them they’re allowed to feel those feelings because mom and dad felt them, too.
Summer camp is a fun, rewarding adventure any child would be lucky to experience at any point in their lives. Hype it up by showing them things they might encounter, and tell them you can’t wait to hear all about it when they return home.
And this is for you, Mom and Dad: remember that they’re fine and having the time of their lives – and they’ll be home soon.
Amanda Daily is a freelance writer