Is your tween or teen ready to make the transition from Summer Camp to a Teen Program? That depends on the individual child. Many traditional camps can certainly offer summer programs through the teenage years and some have added Leadership programs and Community Service to keep older children challenged. As a camp advisor with Tips on Trips and Camps, I have explored hundreds of traditional summer camps and teen programs by meeting directors, visiting programs, and reading camp reports written by my fellow advisors. Being able to go beyond the websites and web searches and knowing as much as I do about all the wonderful options available, I am still challenged to come up with the best option for my own three boys. Each have distinct personalities and needs and I have found that what works for one child may not work for another. While my oldest loved learning to sail and scuba dive, I have ruled it out for my middle child who would never make it past his sea sickness issues.
Even among the traditional camps, there are subtle differences that make them unique and a better fit for one child over another. That is why, as an advisor, speaking with a parent is critical in helping me to determine good fits for my clients. You know your child better than anyone and if you can communicate to me their strengths and interests, I can give you several options that will work. With so many summer choices, I can save you time and protect your summer camp investment by narrowing down your choices. Anyone with distracted or lethargic teenagers knows that too many choices will not help them make a decision. Often they need to be pushed to step outside their comfort zones (leave their cell phones and friends behind) and explore places and interests that will allow them to grow as individuals. Whether it’s learning more about an interest they might want to pursue in college by taking an academic/enrichment class or seeing how people live in different parts of the world and the challenges other cultures face, they will come away with a greater sense of self. My goal for your family is that you will be pleased with the happy child you greet at the end of their summer experience.