Sleep-away camps have been a part of summer tradition in the northeastern states for almost 150 years and for good reason too! Parents, teachers and child development experts alike all find immense benefits in exposing young children and adolescents to outdoor camping experiences.
Camping encourages children to leave behind laptops & video game consoles and embrace a spirit of exploration & discovery in the great outdoors. Spending time at a camp has been proven to improve a child’s self-confidence, boost their decision-making skills, establish positive socialization skills and enhance their ability to make new friends.
BOOST IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF SKILLS
Children learn social skills naturally while camping with other children and adults. As a part of a community, children must learn to compromise, respect and work in unison with others to ensure a productive camping experience. All kids at a camping site must learn to pitch in for chores, sort out misunderstandings and assist each other in the spirit of teamwork.
Different types of camping activities provide children an opportunity to fine-tune their athletic and artistic abilities while competing in light-hearted contests. The kids can let their creative sides loose and entertain each other by coming up with tall tales or creating their own songs to sing after supper.
TAKING ON NEW CHALLENGES AND EXPERIENCES
Camping boosts a child’s self-confidence as there is always a chance to succeed at important tasks – like starting a fire from scratch or pitching a tent without any assistance. Other interesting yet challenging outdoorsy experiences include: climbing a rock wall, identifying types of poison ivy, tying various kinds of knots, shooting an arrow and fishing in rapid-moving waters. In a non-competitive environments like the camping ground, young campers experience freedom from the social, academic and athletic competition that adds immense stress and damages their self-esteem.
It is only when children spend time in nature that they can learn to respect the environment. Once children witness the splendor and magic of the undisturbed ecosystem, they will think twice before littering or contributing to existing land or air pollution.
GETTING ADEQUATE SUN EXPOSURE
There are many health benefits to camping, in addition to developing critical life and survival skills while in the wild. Children are able to gain the right amount of sun exposure for the absorption of vitamin D and the development of healthy bones. Camping, whether on the campgrounds or out in the wilderness, allows children to embrace a healthy, active lifestyle compared to spending hours passively tapping away at a mobile phone screen. Both the mind and body is engaged and stimulated while kids find ways to complete chores and compete in fun activities like crafts-making or telling ghost stories around a roaring campfire.
Camping trips and sleep away camps provide children the unique opportunity to explore the world from a fresh perspective, free from the instructions and restrictions of city life. They can put on their thinking hats, go on adventures, learn to cook from scratch and make friends that will last a lifetime- all by choosing to go on a camping trip.