7 Reasons Every Kid Should Go to Summer Camp


Categories: JCC

78by Camp JCC staff

With the “unofficial” start of the summer, Memorial Day, now behind us, kids are getting more and more excited (and parents more and more anxious) about the school year coming to a close.

We at Camp JCC are here to help both parents and kids! Here are our top seven reasons to send your kid(s) to camp, whether for one week or the whole summer:

1. Camp mitigates “summer learning loss. We’ve already written about the importance of summer camp as an antidote to summer learning loss and summer weight gain.

2. Camp provides community. Even more so than school, camp provides kids opportunities to lead, follow, negotiate and build connections. Whereas most kids’ school days are built around the model of the teacher talking with kids listening, the camp day is built around doing, moving, creating, and most importantly, collaborating. Significantly, all of those things are done with peers they may or may not be interacting with in their school classrooms.

3. Camp teaches resilience. Because it is based more on moving and doing than the typical school environment, campers learn to get back up when they fall. Activities at Camp JCC, like the Gaga pit (Israeli dodgeball) or swim instruction, are challenging. They teach teamwork. They require kids to stretch and grow, and as they grow, campers build self-esteem and resilience as they begin to accomplish things they couldn’t before.

4. Camp forces kids to try new things. Whether it’s drama or nature or pickle ball, the camp day takes kids through a variety of activities—none of which involve a video game controller! This sampling of activities is a great opportunity for kids to discover and explore their talents and values. We regularly see kids blossom as they discover they love pursuits they didn’t even know existed. This is especially true for kids who may feel pigeon-holed into a specific label during the school year.

5. Camp develops social intelligence. Camp provides kids opportunities to develop both social awareness (i.e. empathy and the ability to read social cues from others) AND social facility (i.e. the ability to use social awareness to interact with others). Campers practice socializing with new people and new environments.

6. Camp helps kids be more independent. Stephen Fine, a researcher who studies summer camp (and a camp owner himself) notes, “whereas schools applaud good marks, camp acknowledges and rewards a broader range of accomplishments.” At Camp JCC, our day is designed to help foster independence in a safe environment. From art projects to “camper choice” periods in Upper Camp to the daily free swim session, Camp JCC helps kids learn to express themselves, make and trust their own decisions, and become aware of their own physical abilities.

7. Camp gives parents peace-of-mind. In the storybook version of the world, parents also have summers off, and summer days are spent together as a family, swimming, talking, reading, making craft projects, and generally enjoying each others’ company. In the real world, parents and kids need time away from each other—so Mom and Dad can go to work, or just get some work done around the house. Camp provides a fun, nurturing, safe place for kids to learn and grow.

The first day of Camp JCC is right around the corner. Come check us out for yourself. We’re hosting Camp JCC Dive-In Open House on Sunday, May 31st, from 1 – 4 PM. Come to the Simon Family JCC pool and fields for an afternoon of fun and frolicking. Enjoy some wacky water games and a slip ’n’ slide!

Dive into Camp JCC, where the fun never stops, including a GAGA tournament with prizes! Play as a team or as an individual. Games start at 2pm.

Enjoy a special discount when you sign up for one or all 8 weeks of Camp JCC on this date.

Email campjcc@simonfamilyjcc.org or call 321-2306 for more information