What you believe in drives every decision you make at camp. From the first moments your campers enroll to the last activity and the final goodbyes, what you believe in should be felt throughout your program.
Here’s just a few things we believe are important at the camps we help create with KidSpot.
1) We believe that Play Has Power.
First and foremost, everything we do at camp has to pass one test: is it fun? Can campers and staff take the activity and make it fun. If an activity is fun, it’s going to engage more than just the physical body.
When a camper is enjoying something, their brain fires up the memory making, giving that moment a better chance to stick with the camper. When we tie that fun to content that matters, from values to academic skills, campers are more likely to make deep connections to the content that produces lasting results.
We know that not every activity works for every group. Staff and campers have to buy in, to make it fun. Creating a culture where fun is emphasized fosters an environment where everyone is more likely to give the activities a try, and have a great time learning essential content.
2) We believe in God.
The Bible has so many important values that campers need to be taught. Values like honesty, trustworthiness, respect, perseverance, and faith. This life can be amazing when we give it all we’ve got by trusting in Jesus and the plan he has for our lives.
Campers encounter these values in daily life, but how often are they taught specifically that this is the way they should live?
In our camp programs, these values permeate not only devotions and spiritual content, but also our activities. Throughout the day, campers are given opportunities in activities to decide whether they will be selfish or giving, friendly or reserved, kind or angry. We believe that each of these decisions is a learning opportunity, so we cultivate them and use those moments to shape campers for years to come.
3) We believe in keeping it varied.
At camp, time is limited. We have to use every opportunity to the best of its ability. Each moment should be as special and memorable as it can be.
Because putting camp programs together can be very challenging, it’s easy to fall into the trap of doing the same thing every week. Certainly, this works when you have big pieces of your campus that campers love (like a pool). But for other activities, doing the same things over and over just gets repetitive—and boring.
We want to use our activities as chances to introduce campers to something new. You never know what you or your campers will enjoy until they try it. Every group is different. Some activities work amazingly with groups, others fall flat. But if you stay with the same ‘safe’ activities, you never challenge yourself or your program to grow. We give campers many chances to learn new things. We want campers to expand and experiment. This kind of learning gives campers a better chance to be successful, not only in school but also in life.
For more tips on having a successful summer program or for help with starting a summer program at your location, visit us at www.thespot4kids.com.