It’s common for children to not have their passion figured out yet [heck, many adults are still trying to figure it out]. Maybe your child enjoys a little bit of everything, or maybe they’re still discerning what lights their flame. This is perfectly normal; however, it can make things difficult when it comes time to choose summer activities.
For the undecided child, consider a “potpourri of summer camps.” As the age old saying goes, you’ll never know until you try. And camps are an excellent opportunity to try.
Sign your kid up for a variety of camps with varied interests – sports, acting, painting, horseback riding, science, archery, coding, the list goes on. Choose a few that are different from one another.
Go over the available options with your child, while towing the line between keeping your child’s interests in mind but not letting them stay completely within their comfort zone. Encourage them to go beyond the camp that all their friends may be going to. Rather, note all the pros of being a “trend-setter,” branching out and trying something new. Teach them about the importance of learning STEAM [science, technology, engineering, art and math] skills and try to incorporate those into the selection process. Then, let your child express what sounds most appealing to them.
As a parent who is shopping around for camps, remember that asking questions of the camp directors is not only welcomed, but encouraged. Good camps expect to hear from parents and are happy to answer any questions or concerns.
Here are some things to think about:
• What is the staff’s experience and training? What is the camper-to-staff ratio?
• Is my child supervised in between activities? How much free time do they have?
• Is the price all-inclusive or are there additional charges?
• Is lunch included? What about drinks?
• Is before- and after-care offered? If so, who will be supervising?
• What is the communication plan between camp staff and parents in case of schedule changes or emergencies?
• Will there be an open house where I can see the facilities and meet the staff?
When the summer comes to a close, it’s possible the potpourri of camps will have uncovered a new talent or interest that is just beginning to flourish.