When I think back to my summer breaks as a kid, the memories that stand out the most have nothing to do with video games or watching tv. Instead, I remember using my imagination to envision coral reefs while snorkeling in a cloudy lake, synchronized cannonballs off of the dock and roasting marshmallows by the campfire with friends and family. Summer breaks are an opportunity for a child to grow, to explore the world around them and to continue building skills towards a successful future.
Here are 8 life-changing benefits that a summer camp could provide to your child:
1. Less Screen Time, More World
Summer vacation- the most coveted time of year for a student. Sunshine, swimming and…video games? A recent study discovered that nearly 50% of parents reported that their kids spent more time playing video games or watching TV during the summer months than during any other time of the year. Even more concerning, the amount of time spent on electronic devices during summer break increases exponentially with students that are in their teenage years. Children ages six to ten were found to spend an average of 2 ½ hours per day on an electronic device during summer break while students eleven to seventeen spent an average of 6 ½ hours!
2. Build resiliency
Camps build resilient adults that are more adaptable to situations. Many of the experiences offered during a camp will be completely foreign to your child. By working through physical and mental challenges, your child will be amazed at their ability to persevere and overcome obstacles. This is an invaluable trait that is a characteristic of some of the most successful humans in history!
3. independence & empowerment
For most of our adolescent years, we are shuttled from one decision to the other without having to give it much thought, but at camp, students are presented with opportunities to make independent choices. Being able to work through a series of options and determining the best available outcome is a wonderful skill to have when navigating a world with endless options such as career choices or relationships.
4. Reinvent yourself
We’ve all been shaped by our environments in one way or another but at camp, students are now exposed to new personalities, stories and experiences. An exert from Parent Guide News explains it perfectly:
"Students often attend school year after year with the same peers, which can lead to labeling and being 'stuck' with a particular perception. A child may become known as studious, quiet, etc., when, really, he or she can be boisterous in another setting. Children who go to camps meet a whole other group of people in a different environment. Often times, a child will break out of his supposed categorization if given the chance."
5. A new perspective
Camps to new places, like the Costa Rica Teen Adventure Camp, provide students with a better understanding of other cultures and the world around them. These new perspectives teach your child to be stronger global citizen of the world.
6. appreciation & gratitude
Those new perspectives are often accompanied by viewing home with “new eyes.” Time spent in a different environment helps kids appreciate home, the simple flip of a light switch, their parents, their belongings, a home cooked meal and everything else they don’t have while at camp.
7. new friendships
Camp brings together students from all over the world. The structure of camps, like the Oregon Teen Rafting Camp, requires teamwork and the ability to build friendships with those around you regardless of your differences. These newly forged friendships often result in lifelong companions with kids that they may have otherwise never interacted with.
8. learn & have fun!
We believe that learning takes many forms and continues all throughout our lives- even outside of the classroom! Camps, like our Florida Adventures in Science Camp, offers endless learning opportunities while in a fun and relaxed environment. Students begin to understand that learning is about more than a test or being accepted into a school, but rather, something that we continue to do in life to better ourselves.
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