ACA has your staff training resources! From online courses and webinars to books, DVDs, and the special staff training issue of Camping Magazine, we offer the tools your staff needs to succeed. Prepare your entry-level and veteran staff with these resources on health and safety, bullying, programming and activity ideas, behavior management, and more!
American Camp Association
An interactive game designed to identify sticky situations and staff responses, promote discussion about difficult issues, create teachable moments for staff training, illustrate interdependent problem-solving strategies that succeed, affirm each individual’s role in the camp’s risk management plan, and share the camp’s culture.
Designed to help assist camp counselors in working more effectively with their campers. Covers many important topics for new and returning counselors. Chapters include: A Unique Opportunity (responsibility as a role model, camp as a positive force in youth development, arrival, the first day/night), Today's Campers (social trends, parent interaction, age and developmental characteristics), Working with Individual Campers (reinforcing positive behaviors, courtesies of group living, understanding behavior clues, homesickness, bed-wetting, ADD/ADHD), Working with Groups (setting the tone for group development, cycles of group activity planning, group building, inappropriate group behavior, peer pressure, etc.), and How to Measure Your Success. This resource also available as an e-Institute course. Train your entire staff for less than $75!
A clear and powerful overview of the complexities of bullying behavior in boys and how to respond in practical, effective ways. Discusses several of the factors that make bullying behavior so difficult in general and then thoughtfully explains the differences in both the motivation and behavior between boys who bully and girls who are socially aggressive. Includes a step-by-step process for responding to bullying behavior.
Features a clear and powerful discussion of the complexities of relational aggression in girls and an overview of how to respond in practical, effective ways. Reviews factors that make bullying behavior so difficult and then clarifies the differences between girls and boys who intimidate or abuse others. Includes a step-by-step process for responding to bullying behavior in girls.
Provides an overview of an easy-to-implement, step-by-step group process designed for camp supervisory staff (e.g., head counselors, unit directors, division leaders) for meetings with cabins or groups of campers. The “check-in” is specifically devised to develop trust with members of a particular camper group, as well as obtain essential “kid-friendly” information from the campers about their feelings and attitudes towards camp. It is a highly effective meeting format to which kids respond extremely well that also yields invaluable information about what’s going on in the any camper group.
Featured Professional Development Resources
e-Institute Courses — Train Your Entire Staff for Less Than $75!
Gives staff a jumpstart in considering their roles and responsibilities before arriving at camp. The program's four interactive modules address counselor responsibilities as role models, stress reduction while working at camp, and demographics of today's campers and behavior management techniques. The program content draws from the popular booklet, Camp Is for the Camper.
Designed to teach front-line staff how to help children and youth develop a sense of community and connectedness to the camp experience. Staff will learn how “sense of community” is defined and why it’s important. They’ll also learn about barriers that can reduce a camper’s sense of community and specific strategies for enhancing sense of community. The course focuses on specific tips and techniques that all staff can implement and resources that camps can add to their staff training tool-kits.
Designed especially for front-line camp counselors, to bring attention to the counselor's role in providing campers with a safe and healthy camp experience. No matter what role a counselor has at camp, he or she will be working with and around children. And while it may be exciting to teach crafts, swimming, or tiddlywinks, the bottom line for the parents who brought their children to camp and for your camp director is the safety and health of the campers.
Creating Positive Youth Outcomes
The era of accountability is here. Youth program providers are increasingly asked to identify specific programs outcomes and to justify resources, funding, and support. Based on ACA’s Creating Positive Youth Outcomes workbook, this course teaches program staff how to intentionally target positive youth outcomes using a series of simple steps. Exercises, guiding questions, and camp-specific examples will help you think about, identify, and design your program to meet and achieve positive youth outcomes. This resource also available as a
Entry-Level Program Staff Certificate of Added Qualification
ACA is now offering a twenty-five-hour intensive online course for entry-level program staff working in camps or other youth settings. The course addresses the skills and knowledge areas in ACA's thirteen core competencies and contributes to the professional development of seasonal/part-time staff. The course can be purchased by individual staff OR by administrators for multiple staff at a group rate. Learn more about this course.
Camping Magazine May/June Staff Training Issue
Again this year, you can have the foremost camp trainers and consultants available for your staff orientation.
Featuring Bob Ditter, Stephen Wallace, Jon Malinowski, Kim Aycock, Scott Arizala, Chris Thurber, Ethan Schafer, Jeffrey Leiken, and more offering