The benefits of sending your child to summer camp are well established and numerous. Not only do kids learn to work with others, exercise creativity, and establish long-lasting friendships, but camp also keeps them active, healthy, and engaged. Dr. Michael Ungar, a researcher and writer for Psychology Today who specializes in advising parents as to how to build strong, resilient kids, has noted that attending summer camp gives kids the opportunity to improve physically, emotionally, and intellectually. Summer camp, Ungar says, allows kids to experience the outdoors and enjoy being part of a community and sharing with others. Such benefits, he adds, far outlast the summer.
Ungar is not alone: a 2007 study in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence drew similar conclusions, finding that even just a week at camp showed significant benefits for kids in terms of peer relationships, environmental awareness, and personal independence. Researchers have also found that regularly participating in sports and other physical activities can strengthen brain function and memory. But there’s so much more to camp than all that: camp is also about developing memories that will last a lifetime.
The camp experience can’t just be measured by the number of soccer goals or hot dogs eaten or trophies won; it has to be taken in as a whole. As a parent, you may not be able to fully describe the feeling, but when your child comes home from a day of camp, tired, dirty, and happy and falls asleep that night with a smile on their face, ready for the next day’s adventure, you begin to understand what camp truly means.
This post is written by and brought to you by:
Evan Wofsy, Owner/Director of Camp W Daycamp in Melville, NY
Some additional sources: