10 Benefits of Camp Joe's Summer Camp for Your Kids
Are you considering sending your child to summer camp? If so, you may be wondering if Camp Joe’s is the right fit for their personality. Perhaps they’ve never been away from you during the summer outside of school. Perhaps you’ve never sent them to an arts-based camp experience before. You may be worried that your child’s special interests will not be met or that they will feel out of place at camp.
Inspired by the Gateway Region YMCA’s list of “15 BENEFITS OF SUMMER CAMP FOR YOUR KIDS” we at Joe’s decided to come up with our own list of why we believe Camp Joe’s is the right fit for your family. We know at Camp Joe’s, no matter your child’s interest camp will help them develop important social, emotional and cognitive skills.
Before we begin, let's look at what a typical day at Camp Joe’s summer camp day is like.
What Is It Like to Go to Camp Joe’s?
Camp Joe’s is not just a way to pass the summer break, but a vital part of your child’s development. At Camp Joe’s, children grow, explore and learn about themselves and the people and world around them, and most importantly have fun throughout the entire process.
Camp Joe’s runs June 24th– August 30thfrom 9 am – 3 pm. We have free before care starting at 7:30 am and aftercare from 3 – 6 pm for an additional $50 per child. While our camp serves ages 4 – 13, our aftercare program is only available for ages 5 and up. We’ve found over all our years of camp that children under 5 years old do not do well in aftercare after a full day of camp. Camp Joe’s is structured to be enjoyed by all children whether they’re signed up for only one week or the whole summer. Each week offers different art and movement projects to keep your child stimulated and interested whether they’re at Joe’s for one week or multiple.
What does a typical camp day include? We make plenty of time for Creative Play, Storytelling, Spoken Word, Movement and Dance classes included Modern, Hip Hop, African, Afro Peruvian, and many other styles, and visual arts projects. Campers also go to the beautiful Mount Rainier Pool Tuesday and Thursday afternoons which includes a beautiful park and playground. Special guests come throughout the summer including animal friends from the nature center, representatives from embassies, guests artists from various cultural backgrounds and so much more
Although each camp offers a special variety of activities, all camps offer the opportunity to make friends, learn new skills and grow as a person. Why is summer camp important, and what are the benefits of summer camp for your kids? Here is our list of 10 benefits of summer camp for youth.
1. Develops Lifelong Skills
During Camp Joe’s, children participate in a variety of group activities. For example, while participating in a group activity like dodge ball or learning new choreography with a dance teacher, a child learns how to work on a team, communicate with other children and solve problems on their own.
Camp Joe’s brings children together in an environment that encourages a greater sense of community and appreciation for individual differences, whereas school focuses mainly on academic achievement.
2. Promotes Independence
At Camp Joe’s, a child experiences time away from a parent. This independent time is important in helping children develop a sense of identity. Kids learn to become more self-reliant as they explore their interests and discover their strengths and weaknesses. They learn to trust their inner voice instead of depending on a parent or teacher to tell them what to do. Independence is vital to becoming a self-sufficient adult.
Raising an independent child means teaching responsibility, encouraging exploration and providing a safe environment for a child to make decisions independently. Summer camp nurtures all three of these elements.
3. Makes Time for Play
During the school year, children are used to the routine of making it to school on time, doing homework and then going to bed. Some may engage in extracurricular activities. Although still structured, summer camp is more relaxed than the school routine and provides time and freedom for spontaneous play.
Free play is important to a child's development because they learn to develop creative thinking skills and explore their imagination through play. Playtime creates a safe place for children to express their thoughts and emotions, creating stronger and happier kids. They also learn to interact with the world around them, resolve conflicts, build negotiating skills and relieve stress. There are countless benefits to unstructured play, and it's a fun way to make new friends.
4. Teaches Resiliency
Resiliency is an essential life skill because to be resilient means to get up and push forward after an inevitable setback.
Camp provides the opportunity for children to face many challenges and to practice overcoming challenges. For example, they might not learn how to do a cartwheel perfectly the first time, but with practice they can get there. Or, they might not ace a new dance the first time, but the challenge of practicing and the feeling of joy when they get to do the final piece with new friends makes success that much sweeter.
Camp teaches the value of effort and helps kids believe in themselves as they overcome challenges with determination, patience and a drive to succeed. Learning new hobbies also teaches positive outlets to cope with life struggles, and kids will build a strong support system of camping buddies to help them leap over obstacles.
5. Provides Fun Screen-Free Activities
Kids and adults are spending too much time in front of a screen. In total, children spend more than seven and a half hours a day in front of a screen, whether that be on a mobile device, in front of a TV or at a computer playing a video game. Too much media time reduces time spent sleeping and reading, and may have a negative impact on performance in school.
Camp Joe’s helps children connect to the joy of life beyond the screen. Regardless of what your child's interests are, they will learn and socially interact in a healthy real-world setting at Camp Joe’s. Time away from the screen is vital to a child's brain, body, spirit and future, and could benefit us all.
6. Fosters Growth
One of the biggest benefits of Camp Joe’s summer camp is it takes children out of their comfort zone and pushes them to try new things, as well as explore their already established interests. They will grow as they develop their skills doing their favorite activities, and they will develop new skills as they try activities they have never tried before.
In general, they will leave camp with a stronger sense of identity and a better idea of what they love, which may help them choose a career path in the future.
7. Builds Self-Esteem
At summer camp, children have the opportunity to achieve. Achievement is the main ingredient in self-esteem.
Self-esteem is important for children and adults because we make decisions in life based on how we see ourselves. We choose our careers, relationships and make other important decisions heavily influenced by our self-esteem. Children learn self-esteem through taking action and earning results, and by contributing to their community. They learn to value themselves as a result of hard work and achievement.
8. Supports Wellness
At Camp Joe’s, kids have the opportunity to participate in all kinds of fun physical activities at any skill level.
Only one in three children is physically active every day, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Physical activity is crucial for heart health and maintaining a healthy weight, and it boosts confidence and helps manage stress. It is important to teach the necessity of physical activity when children are young so they can carry exercise habits into adulthood.
In general, kids rely on fun, activities, learning and socializing to relieve stress at camp, rather than engaging in less healthy activities.
9. Nurtures Friendships
Kids get to meet other children with similar interests in a relaxed setting at Camp Joe’s summer camp. They also get to meet new friends with different backgrounds. Children bond over their camp experience, the challenges they face together and the fun they have free of pressure and media distraction to build genuine friendships that last.
10. Keeps Kids Intellectually Engaged
Over the summer, kids might become sluggish without the intellectual stimulation of school, but camp provides mental stimulation in fun ways children can enjoy. Kids get the chance to participate in activities that interest them and every camp day includes some free quiet time where kids are encouraged to read. Summer reading is essential for children to continue the academic progress they made over the school year.
What's the Next Step?
The benefits of Camp Joe’s can last a lifetime. Not only will your child return from camp with greater independence and a stronger sense of identity, but they will also have developed new skills, made new friends and created memories they will cherish forever.