Kids look forward to summertime for a variety of reasons–not the least of which is the opportunity for many wonderful outdoor activities and time with friends. Many parents believe that summertime is highly beneficial for kids because they get a break from school and a chance to do other things. It’s true that kids who can try new experiences during the summer benefit immensely, but it’s also true that kids who aren’t participating in very specific educational activities are missing out on the long-term social and emotional benefits that are available to them through an organized summer camp.
Educational Summer Activities
Summer learning for kids does not mean long, boring hours in a classroom. There are actually many fun summer learning activities available through summer camps–activities that can feed a child’s interests and even help to strengthen their weaknesses so they are better prepared for the coming school year. Furthermore, these summer learning activities can actually provide many long-term social and emotional benefits to kids.
Here are just five ways summer camp can benefit kids socially and emotionally:
1. It provides a different environment. During the normal school year, kids can enjoy interacting with a close circle of friends and experiencing a fairly invariable routine on a daily basis. Of course, there is nothing wrong with this, but the fact is that their comfort in this close circle of friends and regular routine can prevent them from expanding their social skills. During summer camp, kids are introduced to new friends and exposed to new routines and activities. This can help them to grow their social skills and become more confident in their ability to make new friends and try new things–skills that will aid them wonderfully in the future.
2. It allows one to work through social challenges. During summer camp, kids are encouraged to interact with other individuals and with groups, which can help them to experience and overcome social challenges. For example, they can learn how to present themselves well to others, how to influence others and how to show empathy and concern for others instead of just focusing on self and one’s personal thoughts and feelings. This skill is essential for any individual who will be working and interacting with others in the future.
3. It presents opportunities for one to experience emotional challenges. Perhaps one of the most difficult things for kids to learn is that a failure is an opportunity to learn and improve. It can be emotionally difficult for kids to experience failures, as they strive to always do their best. Summer camp can present safe opportunities for kids to experience emotional challenges and build resilience, such as when their team loses a game, or when they feel nervous, excited and sad, without requiring adults to step in and make things better or okay.
4. It is the perfect chance to discover what one really likes. Summer camps tend to have a vast array of interesting activities that allow an individual to try many new things. They can discover what they are passionate about, and build their self-confidence in their ability and willingness to pursue these interests.
5. It keeps one engaged and busy with others. There are numerous benefits in leaving kids alone to use their imaginations and entertain themselves, but if this is a constant state that they deal with for many weeks or even several months at a time, they may become focused more exclusively on self, and it can be difficult for them to transition back into a social group where they must consider others as well. Summer camp is a fun way to help smooth this area, providing plenty of opportunities for the individual to use their imagination and focus on self while also providing plenty of opportunities for them to be social with others.
For more information about Delphi Florida’s unique summer camp program, contact us today!