Tips for Homesickness

 

The foundations of a successful camp experience are often laid months before opening day. Here are some things you can do as a parent to help set your child up for success at camp:


Involve your child in the decision about camp. While a camp experience is a wonderful                           

        experience for most kids, it is not for everyone. If, after your best efforts, your 

        child says  “I don’t want to go to camp”, you might want to look at an alternative

        for the upcoming summer.  Maybe when friends report back on their camp

        experience he will be ready for the next summer.


Familiarize you son or daughter with camp. Visit the camp if possible, look at the camp DVD, and visit the camp website.


Never tell a child he/she can leave early if he doesn’t like camp-it sets them up for failure and they will focus on the “deal” instead of the experience.


Have your child attend camp with a friend if you suspect it might help the transition.


Send encouraging letters telling him/her how proud you are of their accomplishments. Keep the letters focused on camp and not on things that are happening at home. Especially avoid writing about an event he/she would have liked to attend or saying how much your camper is missed or the “dog misses you”.


Give information to your child’s leader beforehand about what works for them.


Don’t linger at camp too long on opening day. Staying too long just delays the transition to new surroundings and can add to your camper’s anxiety level.


Most camps have a policy regarding phone calls. Help your child understand the policy prior to camp so they will not be expecting to hear from you.

 
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