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Getting ready for summer: considering summer camps

by Traci Schumacher on Tue, 03/26/2013 - 12:12pm

Though it may feel like winter out there this week, it is time to start planning for summer... camps, vacation, activities, etc. Summer will be upon us before we know it!

With that in mind, my family and I went to the Summer Camp Expo this weekend at the Oglethorpe Mall, and I was quite impressed by the large variety of summer camp options in our area. Initially it was easy to narrow our choices based on our children's interests and camp location. And yet I am still left with too many good programs from which to choose. Such a problem to have!

There are many factors to consider. Do we focus more on the fun or the educational value? Do we tailor the camps for each individual child's interests or try to find one that accommodates them all at one time for my own convenience? Could we do more than one camp... maybe something very math/science to please Mom and Dad and then another that's more artsy for my daughter or more physical for my son? Should we just scrap summer camp altogether and have more money to put toward our vacation?

Sometimes I think that I can simply pull together activities during the summer that would give my kids the same benefits as attending summer camp. And I do make a good effort to keep things interesting and engaging. But some of these camps offer really unique opportunities for kids either to work on some skills or to explore new interests in a way that I can't. I can't compete with spending a week with the animals at Oatland Island or advancing my kids' math skills in a fun way at Mathnasium.

So, while there is no reason my kids absolutely have to go to summer camp, it is a cool opportunity. The trick is to choose a program wisely so that parents and kids can all be happy with the selection.

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