Posts Tagged ‘summer camp play’

Kids Don’t Remember the Best Day of Television…They Will Remember Their Favorite Day of Camp

Posted Monday, November 14th, 2016 by

 

weeq1Sitting on fences is not safe. If your kid was sitting on a fence, you’d tell them to get off before they fell backward and hurt themselves. But there you are, sitting on the metaphorical fence, hemming-and-hawing about whether or not to give your kid the best summer on the planet.

 

If your kids don’t go to camp this year, they’ll survive. They’ll watch some a lot of TV, sleep in, eat whatever they can find in the pantry, hang out with their friends (probably in your living room, with their smelly, teenage socks all over your couch) maybe visit grandma, do some swimming, and complain on day 5 of vacation that they are bored. You know it’s true because it has happened every single summer since they started kindergarten.  And now, for one reason or another, they have been begging and begging to go to summer camp and you keep telling them you need time to think about it.  At the end of summer, is it going to warm your heart to listen to them brag about how they binge-watched Netflix all summer, or would you rather hear them gush about the new friend they made, the sports they tried and experiences they will never forget?  It’s time to get off the fence.

 

Instead of watching TV all summer, your child could spend weeks in the mountain, hanging around campfires, making new friends, sailing and fishing and swimming and creating memories of a lifetime.  Instead of you having to yell at them to clean their room or find something to do, you would be reading letters about how they faced their fears and tried something new  at camp.  Instead of struggling to find something for them to do every day of the summer, you could have a little R&R yourself, knowing your kid is having a blast.  Instead of eating junk all day and sleeping in until noon, they could be filling their bellies with nutritious lunches, and waking up early to start their day of fun.  Instead of having a plain old boring summer, they could go back to school with story after story about hiking adventures, zip lines, smores under the stars and inside jokes with all of their new friends.

 

They spend the entire school year sitting down. They sit in their classes, they sit at lunchtime, and they come home and sit and do homework, and they sit and eat dinner and then they sit and watch TV and then they go to bed. And they wake up and do it all again the next day and the next day and the next day. So when summer comes along, why not reward them by giving them a chance to run, play, stretch and really be kids? Summer camp is the best place to do that.  Another great benefit of camp is all of the growing and learning that is done, most of the time without them even knowing it. They learn to compromise and communicate and learn self-discipline and self-confidence, things they definitely don’t learn sitting home in front of the TV all day.

 

If you’re really still on the fence about sending and your kid to camp, think about this: they won’t remember their favorite day of watching TV all day, but they will remember the lifetime memories made every day at camp.

Lights, Cameras, Weequahic in Action!

Posted Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015 by

Our Theater department has done a fantastic job making both Tribal and Olympic session’s productions memorable for each and every camper.jungle book

Tribal session’s performance of Jungle Book was an absolute hit! The movie is a classic and always a crown favorite. The costumes were really well done, the singing was great and you could tell that all our campers had a lot of fun putting the show together. Click here to view a short clip of a group of campers singing and dancing to one of the Jungle Book songs during canteen.

After seeing Jungle Book everyone was anticipating what our Olympic session’s production would be! As soon as our campers learned that this session’s choice would be Shrek, everyone was ecstatic and jumped at the opportunity to participate; whether it be a role in the play or designing the set. Our theater counselors were very impressed at tryouts and are thrilled to be working with such talented actors/actresses! The cast list went up yesterday and every camper was pleased with their role.

Sonya, our Theater Program Head, said she chose Shrek because “it is one of [her] favorite shows and has a great storyline. It has a ton of roles and is always a good laugh.” What are some of our campers excited about with this play? “Dragons, knights and castles, of course! And don’t forget the fact that Shrek is a fantastic movie!” one camper said. “It’s a lot of fun being able to a different person while still being yourself at the same time. You can be as dramatic or silly as you want. That’s what I’m looking forward to with this play!” said another.

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It is wonderful to see campers using their creativity and imagination not  only in their acting skills, but also in designing set pieces or sewing  costumes. Everyone is really excited to see the production of Shrek and all  the cast members and crew are working hard to make sure it’s a great  show.

Play

Posted Saturday, January 19th, 2013 by

We recently listened to a man who has spent many, many years studying the effects of play on humans. While it sounds a lot like our job as camp directors, he’s got the Ph.D. so we thought to give him our attention. We are glad we did.

Dr. Stuart Brown said several fascinating things about Play:

  • It overrides what is sometimes fixed in our natures – it brings individuals together in ways which allow them to expand their knowledge of others and the world around them.
  • If the purpose is more important than the act of doing it, it’s probably not play.
  • People who have not played with their hands (fixing and building) do not solve problems as well.
  • The basis of human trust is established through play signals. We begin to lose those signals as we age.

When you look at camp through the prism of these statements on play, you ecounter a big ‘duh!’ moment. Watching our campers play together shows you how the common act of laughing together, or playing gaga, or chase, or different table games allows the kids to spread their wings and learn.

While we have a good bit of unstructured play at Weequahic (which we feel important), there is also a great deal of play within teams such as soccer, basketball, baseball, dance teams, and more.  Campers build trust with their teammates, learn from mistakes, and are taught to keep a great attitude throughout their time at camp.

In woodshop, robotics, and ceramics, we give kids a great opportunity to explore with their hands and make, fix, and tear apart things they don’t normally at home. These experiences lead to wonderful outcomes both over the short and the long term.

Thankfully, Dr. Brown reminds us that we, as humans, are designed to play throughout our lifetimes. We couldn’t agree more. And, since play signals help build trust, we hire camp counselors who show the right mix of maturity and experience while keeping playfulness close to the surface.

We are excited to remain a place where play leads to several much needed outcomes: relationship formation, the development of confidence and independence, and a community in which campers know they are accepted. Whether through our traditions, choice based program, evening activities or during free time, our campers laugh and learn while playing!