sleepaway camp

Top 10 Tips for the Best Sleepaway Camp Experience

Camp Cody Team 08/03/2020

Sleep away camp is a memorable experience for kids of all ages, especially first timers. With ice breakers to help get kids settled in and camp counselors guiding kids with activities and social skills, summer camp offers a warm and inviting atmosphere. Our staff has pulled together a handy list of tips for your child so he or she can make the most out of sleepaway camp.

three boys in front of a computer

Tip #1 Get to Know the Camp Counselors: It’s easy to shy away from the camp counselors but they’re here to help and make camp your home away from home. Encourage your child to ask plenty of questions and set aside some time to talk with the counselors. If your child is planning to return to camp year after year, you’ll want him or her to feel comfortable with the counselors. Not to mention, counselors have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to certain activities and programs.

Tip #2 Take Advantage of the Outdoors: One of the biggest benefits of sleepaway camp in New Hampshire is the outdoors. There’s nothing quite like the Granite State, from Lake Ossipee to the White Mountains, gorgeous scenery is everywhere. Families from the city absolutely love sending their child to sleepaway camp as this allows them plenty of opportunity to have a blast in nature. Kids who don’t live near the water can try kayaking, paddleboarding, canoeing, sailing and so much more.

Tip #3 Stay in Touch with Summer Camp Friends: Once settled into sleepaway camp, it can be difficult to say goodbye to close friends. Talk to your child about ways to stay in touch throughout the year so he or she can still feel the connection next summer.

Tip #4 Try New Things: This is an important tip when it comes to getting the most out of sleepaway camp. Even if activities make your child uncomfortable, just know they are completely safe. Camp counselors have been thoroughly trained and the other kids will be there to cheer your child on. It can be easy to stay in one’s comfort zone but nothing feels as good as facing your fears.

Tip #5 Ask People Questions: Getting to know other people requires listening. It can be easy to talk about yourself but let your child know to slow things down and ask other campers open ended questions. There are kids from all over the country, with all different backgrounds attending summer camp. Your child can learn so much from other campers and build lifelong friendships just by starting with some simple ‘get to know you’ questions.

Tip #6 Follow the Rules: Rules are set in place for a reason and although kids can get tempted to break the rules, it’s important to abide by them. Remember, rules are there to keep campers safe. If your child breaks the rules, they’re breaking trust with camp counselors and the other summer campers. You don’t want your child jeopardizing their time at sleepaway camp.

Tip #7 Focus on the Present: Nervous campers can let their anxiety spiral. Creating false scenarios, worrying about not making friends and wanting to go home and can make sleepaway camp a miserable experience. Stress the importance of stay in the present moment. If they’re having fun ziplining or stand up paddleboarding, they should enjoy it. Sleepaway camp is about living in the moment and letting worries float away.

Tip #8 Pack Appropriately: Before arriving at camp, go through a packing list to be sure your child is fully prepared for camp. Your child can have a difficult time at sleepaway camp if unprepared. Make sure sunblock, bathing suites, sneakers, flip flops, towels, personal hygiene products, t-shirts, rain gear, hoodies, jeans, and shorts are packed. Always pack extra!

Tip #9 Set Goals: Talk about a few goals your child can hit while at summer camp, whether it’s trying a new sport or making two new friends. Small goals can lead to a big boost of confidence.

Tip #10 Have Fun: Sleepaway camp is a stress-free environment. All your child needs to know going into it is to have fun. Kids are away from home, out of school and out of their daily routines. This is a time to unwind and enjoy themselves.

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