10 Tips to Help Your Child Prepare Confidently for Summer Camp: Sports Camp, Art Camps for Kids & STEM Summer Camps
If your kids have never before attended summer camp – and they aren’t sure what to expect – the unknown might make them a little bit nervous. But you can help prepare and excite them instead for sports camp, art camps for kids or STEM summer camps.
Helpful Hints for Preparing Kids
Parents, don’t send your children off to camp without some preparation! We’ve compiled 10 tips to help equip your kids for an enjoyable experience at summer camp this year.
Since knowledge is power, as the saying goes, get ready to fill those little heads with wisdom as your students look forward to their summer camp experience. And, as you make them a part of the planning, they’ll feel more confident and invested in their upcoming summer adventure!
1. Assist with packing ahead of time
About a month out, start an inventory list of what your youngster should bring to camp each day. You can even begin setting these items aside, or in a backpack that you keep in the corner of your child’s bedroom. Include items like sunglasses, caps, sunscreen and any needed medications.
2. Stock up on supplies
If your students’ camps include a special theme or event, purchase items needed for that and have them on hand early. Also, consider talking to your kids about certain snacks or lunch items they may want nearby during the day. Be sure to label everything with your child’s name so belongings don’t get mixed up at camp.
3. Talk to each other
It’s normal for kids to feel nervous about attending a sports camp, art camps for kids, or STEM summer camps. Encourage them to talk about those feelings. Unless they’re asking for advice, you should mostly listen. Empathy works, too, as well as discussions about your own camp experiences from childhood, as long as they’re relevant.
4. Know the rules
Look at the guidelines for your chosen camp. Understand the policies and procedures so you can talk them over with your kids. Knowing what to expect from adults and camp leaders makes kids feel less anxious. Be sure to call the camp ahead of time with any questions so you get expectations straight before it starts.
5. Visit your pediatrician
If it’s been a few months since your children’s annual physicals, schedule an exam. Make sure their physical health is in order and they are allowed to participate in all summer camp activities.
6. Visit the camp site
Bring your child with you to the actual campsite or school ahead of time. If possible, walk around and introduce yourself to the staff members. This will help your child feel like they’re more than just strangers. If you can’t visit the school, take a look at their website and social media accounts to familiarize yourself and your children with them.
7. Stay calm and carry on
Planting the seeds of homesickness won’t help anyone. Take your cues from your children and simply keep the lines of communication open. Convey a sense of calmness, optimism and trust. You made a good choice for your child, and encourage your children to stick things out, even when they may not feel like it, once sports camp, art camps for kids, or STEM summer camps begin.
8. Encourage independence
Your little ones need to feel a sense of confidence in themselves to make good choices and collaborate with fellow campers. Demonstrate faith in your child, and watch them rise to the occasion. They’re headed for a summer of great exploration and growth. Find the fun in that and your kids will, too!
9. Arrive a little early – and don’t hover
Give yourself plenty of time to get to camp, especially on the first day. This cuts down on extra anxiety and stress. Tell your kids, “See you later!” and try not to block entrances for other families doing the same thing. Bring all your paperwork and any written instructions or medicines. Your camp director will appreciate not having to memorize everything you tell them.
10. Accentuate the positive
Know that your chosen KTP camp staffs professionals who care about kids and will keep you in the loop in case of an emergency. So send your child off with a quick hug, a kiss and a smile. It’s going to be a great time for campers, staff – and you. Summer has begun!
Count Down and Get Excited!
Some families start a countdown clock to add to the excitement. Regardless of how you prepare, meaningful conversations filled with love and optimism will get your child prepared for all the excitement their sports camp, art camps for kids or STEM summer camps have in store for them.
Contact the experts at KidzToPros for more information and ways to prepare for this summer’s fun adventure.