Summer camps offer a multitude of benefits for kids, ranging from building solid friendships to developing valuable life skills. Below we have put together benefits on kids both mental and physical health when attending such programs.
- Boosts Self-Confidence
Children need confidence for them to survive – and thrive. For a child to achieve confidence levels they need to be exposed to the outside world and real-life scenarios. Summer camps are full of activities that encourage kids to step out of their comfort zone and feel confident about themselves. These activities such as wilderness camping, obstacle courses, group activities and dramatic performances – allow for confidence to be reinforced by success and peer appraisal. In the process of boosting self-confidence, kids also build their all-around resilience as they take on risks and challenges in a supportive environment.
- Building Friendships
Summer camps are among the handful of youth programs that disconnect kids temporarily from the distracting digital world, creating numerous opportunities for children to establish new friendships. Summer camps provide the ideal environment for kids to take social risks that they wouldn’t even think about taking in any other setting. Plus, it’s a well-documented fact that most camp alumni make their most solid friendships while attending summer camps.
- Develop Independence
Getting ready for camp is the first step to developing a child’s independence, helping with packing such as adding the name labels and iron-on clothing labels help children appreciate the importance of keeping track of belongings. Being away from the comforts of home a child gains a new sense of responsibility and independence, practising making decisions for themselves without parents and teachers guiding every move. When a child themselves navigates through different group dynamics they quickly also learn how to also be mindful of another person’s feelings.
- Encourages Healthy Living
While summer camps are primarily known for their buffet of physically engaging activities, they also provide healthier food choices for the attendees. This combination of physical stimulation and wholesome foods while at the camp helps encourage the campers to lead a healthy life beyond the camp. In fact, a 2014 study in the American Journal of Health Behavior says that camps with healthier food offerings are likelier to produce campers who prefer to eat their fruits and veggies more. In addition to everything, most summer camps offer cooking activities where kids learn how to prepare nutritious meals.
- Reintroduction to Nature
Thanks to modern technological advances, we live in a world that is mostly digital. While these brilliant advancements help make life easier for us adults, they cause kids to be more reliant on the fun and entertainment provided by technology, making them spend less time outdoors. Summer camps give kids the perfect opportunity to experience the natural world in a way that is fun and exciting, which may even encourage them to engage in more outdoor activities in the future.