It’s that time of year! We’ve survived that last trip to the carpool lane and now it’s time to find something productive for our children to do during summer break. That something is typically camp! If you’ve chosen to send your child to sleepaway camp this year, you’re providing a great opportunity to encourage the growth of their social skills. Support them in making goals to do the following while they’re away:
Make new friends – Even if you’ve scheduled them to attend camp with a friend, urge your children to make new ones while away at camp. They should also exchange contact information so that they might keep in touch beyond camp. Mastering introductions and finding common interests in others as a child will make those interactions easier as young adults and beyond.
Leave things better than you found them – No one wants a messy roommate. Before heading to overnight camps, make sure that your child is adept at cleaning up after themselves and making their beds so that they’re not viewed in an unfavorable manner. They’ll use these skills again when they go away to college, so this is great practice!
You’ve got mail – Your child will be more inclined to write home if all of the items necessary to do so are readily available. Local stationers like Paper Source and Paper Affair have great camp inspired stationery for children – let them pick some out. Include fun writing utensils and stamped envelopes, and mention that you can’t wait to read about their adventures. Be certain to prepare letters and care packages for them, as well, so that they’ll receive them periodically during mail call.
Camp is a social event, and with social events come rules of etiquette. Even if your child will be attending a variety of day camps this summer, ensure that they’re being considerate of other campers and their counselors. After all, the Golden Rule is the most important one. I wish you and your family a safe and happy summer break!
Erika Preval is a certified etiquette consultant and founder of both simply put, a blog that simplifies the intricacies of manners for adults as well as Charm Etiquette, the premiere source for boutique etiquette events created for modern youth in Atlanta. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.