Your Staff Are Hired: Now What?

You have hired your staff, but training does not begin for another few months. For our camp staff to be prepared to work with children on Day 1, their training must begin well before the buses pull into the campsite. Your training will undoubtedly consist of team-building exercises, discussion on all the policies and procedures, creating schedules, and, most importantly, prioritizing the campers. You will instill “campers first” in the staff mentality. Camps have focused on these topics in their staff training for decades.

In the Care of Other People's Children, Part 2: Training Frontline Staff to Make Good Decisions

While many risks can be managed through decisions regarding such things as facilities, equipment, requirements for participation, and policies, it is primarily through the day-to-day decision-making by staff that a camp has the most capacity in establishing control over risk. In large part this is because most accidents involving campers occur in program, living, and common areas — typically when campers are (or were supposed to be) under the supervision of frontline camp staff such as cabin counselors, program staff, and activity area supervisors.

Five Ways You Can Use Research on Habit Formation to Develop Staff

You've probably read those statistics about the number of people who buy gym memberships in January and then never work out. Maybe that's totally you. The stakes for physical fitness are high — we all want to live longer, healthier lives — but the motivation to act, more often than not, simply falls flat.

Create Your Own Online Staff Training Packages

Well-established and ever growing, ACA’s virtual learning portfolio includes online courses, live webinars, recorded webinars, and staff certificates of added qualifications (in-depth online competency-based courses). 

Meet Staff Where They Are Not Where You Wish They Would Be

Unanswered emails. Requests (demands) for time-off. Over-involved parents. What’s the matter with young people today? Most likely nothing! We have more in common with this cohort of staff than one might think; their needs are just expressed differently. We have an opportunity to communicate that we are in touch with the times and yet have a handle on timeless wisdom. Recruit staff for next summer (and beyond) by demonstrating that we understand the perspectives of those we hope to hire without compromising important vision, values, and views.

No Generation Left Behind

Without a doubt, the most popular comment I get from clients in my public speaking work is (some variation of) “’Kids today have absolutely no initiative or basic work ethic! I ask them, ‘Well, how would you accomplish this task if it was all up to you?’ . . . and they just stare at me.” And eight times out of 10, that comment is followed with a grumbled “Millennials …”

The Art and Science of Youth Development: The Role of the Camp Counselor

What do campers need from the counselors who work with them? They need caring relationships with adults they can trust. They need clear limits, high expectations, and healthy challenges. Campers need to be accepted for who they are. They need counselors to support them in taking positive risks and avoiding negative ones. In short, they need you to be the very best you can be.

Calming Camper Conflicts

Conflicts between kids at summer camp can arise for a wide variety of reasons. Here are some steps to help guide you through conflict resolution.

Four Secrets for Effective Human Interaction at Camp

When you agreed to work at camp, you immediately made the decision to have fun, challenge yourself, and change lives. While the format to accomplish this will be provided for you by your camp, the implementation will not. This will come from you in the form of dedication and effort. How much commitment you choose to give is important because campers don’t always come to camp knowing how to succeed.

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