Is Your Child Ready For Sleep Away Camp?
Summer camp is a right of passage for many kids. Not only is it fun, they also begin to learn independence and other important skills, while making friends that can last a lifetime. The main concern is making sure your child is ready for summer camp. This age is different for every child, but the following guide can help you make a decision.
Are there any night time issues or concerns?
Children that wet the bed regularly or that have issues with sleep walking or night terrors may not be quite ready for summer camp. In some instances it is because embarrassment or even bullying could result, while in other instances it could be a safety issue. If you can find a camp that has experience in working with these issues to maintain a child's safety and dignity, you may be able to still send your child to camp.
Is your child relatively laid back?
Laid back kids that tend to adapt to changes readily are often ready for camp at a younger age than their higher strung peers. This is because they are not upset too greatly by a change in routine. These kids tend to be outgoing or at least not too shy around strangers. If your child is easily nervous, suffers separation anxiety, or doesn't warm to new people easily, you may need to hold off on summer camp until they are older.
Does your child have overnight experience?
Kids that have been on sleepovers at friends' homes are more likely to adapt quickly to summer camp. If you aren't sure if your child is ready, plan with friends to have a few sleepovers in the months leading up to camp. If your child is miserable or still horribly homesick by the second or third sleepover, they may not be quite ready to spend a week or two away at summer camp.
Have you tried other camp experiences?
Building up to sleep away camp works well for some children and families. This normally begins with attending day camp the first year. This helps a nervous child become accustomed to the normal camp day experience. A day camp that has an overnight event at the finale can be an excellent choice for preparing a child for summer camp. If a child has fond day camp memories, chances are they will quickly adapt to and enjoy a sleep away camp.
Contact camps like Camp Walt Whitman you are interested in to find one that is the perfect fit for your child.