Available Now
MetroKids
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Feed Feed Edit Module

Camp to Home Communication

Camp rules dictate how you stay in touch with your camper over the summer

(page 1 of 2)

Parents today are accustomed to the instant access cell phones, texting and email gives them to their kids. But camp communication policies that disallow or restrict camper phone and/or email access can cut that immediate connection — potentially raising anxiety levels in parents used to reaching their kids 24/7.

Camps aren’t snipping the proverbial phone cord to be cruel. On the contrary, stringent communication guidelines, say camp experts, are set because constant parental monitoring of whereabouts and well being has been known to work against a child’s successful summer camp experience.

Camp phone and email rules

Over the past decade, day and overnight camps have considered how to balance the ease of new technology within traditional camp parameters — one in which letters home remains the preferred camper/parent communication route.

Although camp directors generally welcome parent inquiries, they know that campers who are able to text mom whenever they have a problem will not build the life skills — independence and conflict-resolution among them — camp helps to develop. “When a parent says, ‘Call me if you need anything’ or ‘I’ll come get you if you don’t like camp,’ it signals that the child isn’t capable of working things out on his own,” says Michael Chauveau, executive director of the American Camp Association (ACA) Keystone Field Office.“Learning to be self-reliant in a safe camp environment prepares children to cope when they eventually leave home.”

Lines of communication

Some camps have “no electronics” policies; others allow two-way, parent-camper email. Some camps funnel all parent communications through the director; others instruct parents to contact counselors or group leaders. Knowing, understanding and abiding by your camp’s policies ensures a better experience for everyone.

“We know that if kids have phones and text home about a problem, parents may get worried about something” camp staff can resolve, says Tom O’Neill, director of Golden Slipper Camp, a 60-plus-year-old overnight camp in Stroudsburg, PA. “That’s why we tell parents to call us first.”

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Advertisement
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More on this topic »Camps

Adventure Camps Give Kids the World

Adventure Camps Give Kids the World

Adventure camps that let kids travel to learn or perform community service broaden horizons.

Camp: A Day in the Life

Camp: A Day in the Life

A day in the life of a summer camp

What Does a Camp Director Do?

What Does a Camp Director Do?

Behind the scenes with the people who set the tone for summer camp

Edit ModuleShow Tags

MK Memo

MK Memo: Moms Know
Save the Date: Main Line Talent Show

Save the Date: Main Line Talent Show

All about the 2nd annual Main Line Talent Show, featuring 36 young singers, dancers and musicians from 20 Greater Philadelphia schools

Comments

April 2015 Preview

April 2015 Preview

Standardized tests, Autism Awareness Month articles and nature spots for kids mark our April 2015 issue.

Comments

Spring Break Water Safety

Spring Break Water Safety

3 tips on building kids' swim skills and water safety on your spring break vacation.

Comments

Snow Day Snowmen

Snow Day Snowmen

MK readers share pics of their snow-day snowman masterpieces!

Comments

Tax Credits for Summer Camp

Tax Credits for Summer Camp

Learn which camp expenses are tax-deductible.

Comments

Edit ModuleShow Tags

MomSpeak

The voices of local moms
9 Fun Things to Do With Kids' Art Projects

9 Fun Things to Do With Kids' Art Projects

9 ways to decide which kid art projects to keep, display or throw away

Comments

MomSpeak

The voices of local moms
3 Tips for Mom Accountability

3 Tips for Mom Accountability

3 easy ways a busy single mom holds herself personally accountable for her life choices.

Comments

MomSpeak

The voices of local moms
Moms' Review: The Philadelphia Zoo

Moms' Review: The Philadelphia Zoo

A mom reviews 5 great things to do with kids at the Philadelphia Zoo.

Comments

{/if}