Best Summer Camp

When looking at summer camps for your child, there are many things to keep in mind. Not all camps are right for all kids. Some children would do well in a large camp with hundreds of campers, while others need a small summer camp that can give more personal attention.

Size is not the only factor, you should also look at the leadership. A Director who the children are not comfortable with could make it difficult for the children to talk to the Director if they had a problem with other staff. What are the requirements for counselors? Is the head counselor of sufficient age and experience?

Summer camps focus on different things. Is the program all about fun, or is there another goal? Perhaps character, scholastic, or athletic development? Which is most important for your child?

Price really shouldn't be your first concern, but unfortunately reality and budget may dictate otherwise. Look to see what additional fees may not be included in their advertised costs. Some camps charge extra for certain activities or for activity supplies. Does the camp charge for trips? Visits to the canteen? Will the children be allowed to have and spend money while they are at camp? On what? There are camps that do not allow children to have money and provide no opportunity or need to spend it. How will your child feel if he or she doesn't have as much money as other campers? What if your child has more? What if your child loses the money?

Phones and cellphones nowadays are a double edged sword. On one hand many parents like that their child can contact them at any time. However cellphones can act as a crutch, slowing children's acceptance of and adaptation to camp life. With a cellphone children often don't feel as if they are really on their own and thus can be much slower to devlop the self confidence in their ability to handle real independence. Cellphones can also undermine a counselors authority with the, not always intentional, threat of children calling their parents and "telling" on a counselor for disciplining them. Even when a counselor is totally correct knowledge that campers have cellphones can cause counsleors to second guess themselves and hesitate to discipline when they should. Many summer camps ban cellphones for campers, or simply are located in areas that get poor to non-existent reception.

Is the camp willing to send home (kick out) campers or even staff who cause problems? While it intially sounds bad, a camp that consistently shows it is willing to send home campers that misbehave means that it will not allow one person to ruin things for your child. A camp that nevers kicks out a child, lets those children stay in camp, and most likely ruins things and sets a bad example for others. Even worse is a camp that will not kick out problem staff.

Camp Dixie