Education reform has become a widely debated topic in communities and homes nationwide. Today’s children are tomorrow’s leaders, and current debate suggests the current education system may not be providing the 21st century skills needed to become successful, productive adults in tomorrow’s world. Often, this discussion is missing one critical component: Camp.
The American Camp Association (ACA) reminds families that camp fosters year-round education through:
Developmental Growth — Developmental growth – such as independence, self-sufficiency, and learning to overcome adversity – is the foundation for academic achievement. Research shows that participation in intentional programs, like camp, can help stem summer learning loss – providing experiences that challenge children, develop talents, and expand horizons.
Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic — Camp was founded by educators. Today camps continue the practice of using things like environmental studies, map reading, and habitat restoration to teach problem-solving, math, and biology. Camps also promote reading and writing, whether through quiet time in a bunk, or scheduled time for journal and letter writing.
Partner with Schools — Camps and schools often partner together to create exceptional learning opportunities, even when school is not in session. According to ACA’s recent survey on Camp-School partnerships:
• Fifty-eight percent of responding camps said they partner with schools either directly or indirectly.
• Approximately 43 percent of responding camps said that they partnered with schools primarily to keep children engaged throughout the year.
• Targeted programs include teamwork, social skills, and problem solving.
For more information about preparing for the summer camp experience, or to Find A Camp, parents can visit www.CampParents.org . This online resource for families includes expert advice, information on health and safety, and ACA’s searchable database of over 2,400 ACA-Accredited® camps. In addition, families can follow ACA on Facebook and Twitter for helpful hints and camp information.
Contact Public Relations at 765.349.3317 or pr@ACAcamps.org  to interview an ACA spokesperson for more information about the essential camp experience. For customizable public service announcements or article reprints, visit our Media Center at www.ACAcamps.org/media .
The American Camp Association® (ACA) works to preserve, promote, and enhance the camp experience for children and adults. ACA-Accredited® camp programs ensure that children are provided with a diversity of educational and developmentally challenging learning opportunities. There are over 2,400 ACA-accredited camps that meet up to 300 health and safety standards. For more information, visit www.ACAcamps.org .
©2011 American Camp Association, Inc.