Choosing the right summer camp for your child is a task. With ample opportunities it is perhaps even more difficult. Everything seems as important and informative that rejecting any camp is disheartening. Local Camp Associations may help but there are still some questions popping up all the time.
We bring you an exclusive insight to help you decide most optimal summer camp for your ward. Important questions to ask before signing up for summer camp are:
1- Is my child ready? It is very important to understand your child’s needs and aspirations. They must align well with the camps you are looking out. If the child has interest in a particular camp, they sure will be enriched with the activities there. Check your child’s skills and behavior before opting for a camp. For overnight camps the child needs to be prepared for sleepovers away from home.
2- Is my child excited and interested in a particular camp? Before selecting a camp check if it interests your child. You may try and seek help from teachers at school. They can guide you in terms what subject or activity invigorates your child. Also make your child a part of camp selection. Camp must align with your child’s temperament.
[Also Read: Summer camps at interactive science museums]
3- Is it a financially a viable preposition? Registration costs, meals, transportation and logistics at the camp may cost havoc. These budgetary aspects play an important role in selecting a camp. Being expensive doe not necessarily mean optimal.
4- Is the camp accredited? ACA accreditation ensures over a few hundred standards on health, safety and staffing have been met. Ask the camp director for more licensing details and for experiences they may have had in past.
5- What is the camp vision and objective? It is very important to find out how the camp plans to execute. Their philosophy will help in understanding the basic idea and objective they aim to work upon. Also if its a religious conservative organization or they have opted for a more effluent strategy. Their methodologies and policies will help you understand its suitability for your child
6- How well is the staff trained? The experiences and training's given to prepare the staff is very important too. How are the staff recruited and their background checks. The screening process of the staff must be ensured and reported for the safety of your child. Take extra caution about criminal checks and background reports of the camp organizers.
7- CPR training and emergency aids: Check for the CPR training of the staff and how first aid will proceed in case of emergency. Also the proximity of nearest ER is a must.
[Also Read: Summer camp safety tips]
8- What is the ratio of instructor to attendee? There must be adequate staff to focus on all campers at all times. A good 1:5 ratio ensures calibrated learning for our little camper and utmost safety at camp premises.
9- Is Grievance management in place? A proper grievance management process must be followed by the camp organizers. As children may end up confronting and conflicting. There must be good discipline methods to ensure enjoyable and enriching camp environment.
10- What will be the days plan at the camp? Do ask for the daily plan at the camp. This will help in understanding indoor-outdoor activity balance, nap times if any, meal plans and also if this schedule is in harmony with your child’s routine.
11- How will the children reach the camp? The transportation part must be inquired well. The person riding the kids must be competent enough and ensure safety of the children at all times.
12- Is the meal plan healthy and hygienic? Don’t forget to mention allergies your child may have. Also are the arrangements for vegan or gluten free foods intact. Is the meal in line with state and federal food requirements for kids. Is the pantry hygienic and how is the meal prepared
13- Check for references: Keep asking people for references, people who may share more insights about the camp. This will help you get the first hand experience from someone who may have attended the camp before.
Keep safety aspects under control, opt for more value-added camps and help your child have an enriching summer. Keep reading campnavigator for more updates on camps.
By Minu Manisha
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