With the last days of school upon us, there is no better time than the present to start a summer day camp. Small kids and teens spend most of the year cooped up in classrooms, and they need some time, and room, to spread their wings for the summer months. Help them make memories that will last for many summers to come by playing an active part in summer day camp with other kids and teens of like interests.
For that matter, start one yourself. Here are some great ways to get the ball rolling.
Choose Your Summer Day Camp Location Wisely
The last thing most kids and teens want is to be unwillingly confined after nine months of the same from most educational institutions. You will need a place that they can enjoy the freedom and the fun of the hot summer sun. Give them a place to be active and play games. Of course, you will need to take the weather into consideration. It is a good idea to choose a place that has the option for both indoor and outdoor activities.
Check with city leaders to see if any public facilities are available at affordable prices. Churches are also good possibilities, as many invest in off-site real estate for just this sort of thing. If you go to church, there may even be someone willing and able to facilitate your day camp needs.
What to Consider When Hiring Your Summer Day Camp Workers
Again, churches are usually filled with people ready, willing, and able, to help make your summer day camp a success. If you choose to go another direction, perhaps you should look into low cost advertisements. These may include posting on grocery store bulletin boards, in classified sections of area newspapers, and at the local Boys and Girls Club.
People who are already actively working with children may be chomping at the bit to help with your day camp. Just make sure you have determined how much you are going to pay, and what their duties will be before meeting with them. Most importantly, always make sure you perform background checks on people that will be working closely with children.
Planning for the Actual Summer Day Camp Activities
Naturally, your kids and teens will need time to be themselves and engage in their own activities. Still, there must be structure and it is your job to provide it. Make sure you have a plan of action before day one of day camp even begins. Have your rules, policies, and discipline procedures in place. It is also important to actively seek parents’ approval before the first morning’s activities.
Holding a meeting with all parents is a good idea, and a great time to make them aware of your plan. Be positive and encourage their input. This way, everyone knows what to expect going in. You may even hold a burger-and-hot dog cookout to add to the festive atmosphere a good summer day camp usually provides.
Fun. Discipline. Responsibility. Your summer day camp should teach kids and teens all of these qualities. Most importantly, it should teach that these things can go hand-in-hand with the right levels of expectation, commitment, and attitude.