Latest ACA Blog Posts

June 1, 2012

According to author and psychologist Michael Thompson, PhD, 97 percent of children experience at least some occasional homesick feelings at camp. Considering that statistic, you’ll probably have at least a few campers who experience some level of homesickness this summer. As their counselor — their first line of communication and comfort — do you know what to say and do?

Selected Tips for Handling Campers’ Homesickness

1. Early on, introduce campers to older campers who were once in their shoes.

May 31, 2012

Guest post by Missy Schenck       

The first time I went away to summer camp I had just finished the third grade. All first-year campers have nagging doubts about their summer away from home and I was no exception. 

May 29, 2012

I love to read, and as such, many people forward things to me they think I might find interesting. It is great — I feel like I have my own set of librarians working just for me. ACA’s Director of Research Deb Bialeschki is one of those librarians.

May 23, 2012

Photo courtesy of Trailside Discovery Camp in Anchorage, Alaska.

Stargazing in the night sky, hiking in an ancient forest, even just feeling the breeze on a warm day — these simple things help kids find peace of mind, wonder, and a greater connection to the world. Camp is one of the best places (and in some cases, the only place) for kids to be nurtured by nature!

May 22, 2012

There is something to be said about the revival of a “way of learning” that supports tacit knowledge, (tacit knowledge will be needed in a constantly changing world — see “Learning for a World of Constant Change,” by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown), and its relationship to the cultivation of both hope and imagination. Tacit knowledge is a result of doing and experiencing — engagement.

May 18, 2012

Sometimes having the right activity at the right moment can make the difference between a good day and a great day at camp! Here are some no-planning, no-equipment-necessary games that you can play with your campers. (Find these and 98 other nature activities in 101 Nature Activities for Kids, by Jane Sanborn and Elizabeth Rundle.)

May 14, 2012

“People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.” — Dale Carnegie

Did you know that when your kids have the chance to engage in free, unstructured play, they’re actually developing skills that are vital to their success?

May 9, 2012

Guest post by Michael Eisen

May 7, 2012

We are rapidly approaching significant opportunity as a community of practice. We must be present, prepared, and practiced for parents, politicians, and professionals alike who are beginning to clamor for what we do and have done for decades for children, youth, and adults.

May 4, 2012

What do young people need most from YOU, their mentor?

Find out the answer to that and more in "Mentoring 101: Building Your Summer Skill Set" — a webinar taking place Thursday, May 10 from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. ET.

Make an impact in the lives of your campers this summer and be the best mentor you can be!

Photo courtesy of Camp John Marc in Bosque County, Texas.