Tears and Rain: Disciplinary Debacles at Summer Camp — Lessons Learned

The sometimes heavy rain on the last and closing days of camp only accentuated the tears of sadness shed in this closest of communities. Some were tears borne of the profound sense of loss that the end of another season brings.

Those were the "good" tears.

Others reflected the disappointment of peers, counselors, and camp directors at the last week's actions of five about-to-graduate, and oldest, members of the camp's teen leadership program.

Those were the "bad" tears.

Evolving Risks — Employment Practices / Sexual Harassment / Unlawful Discrimination

In 2015, there was a sharp increase in the number of calls to the ACA Crisis Hotline about accommodation and inclusion of individuals, both staff and campers, who identify themselves as transgender, gender nonconforming, or gender variant.

Counselor Success Kit

“It is not our abilities that determine who we are, it is our choices.” — Harry Potter

Since 1861 when the first organized camp began, awesome people like you have given their time and talents to make camps throughout the United States a life-changing experience. In the early years, camps were created to provide an alternative environment for children to learn through a new experiential model and to promote an appreciation for being in the outdoors. Staff had to be extremely flexible as they adapted to rustic conditions and crude program ideas.

Twenty Tips for the 20-Something Supervisor

Being in that very first supervisory role is hard for everyone — regardless of age. For younger supervisors there are added challenges in building credibility and gaining the respect of others — it’s only natural to be nervous. Those promoted “from within” to a supervisory position after working at camp for multiple seasons must also be prepared to face possible challenges with the change in roles.

Building Healthy Relationships with Parents: What Every Camp Needs to Know

Today’s parents are supportive and dedicated to their children, but they are also the most anxious and controlling parents in American history. Successful camps have strategies in place for effectively managing parents’ needs and expectations, but what strategies are most effective? This webinar provides evidence-based approaches for managing today’s (over)parents based on what’s working in the camp industry, as well as tips for positive parent interaction.

In this session participants will learn:

The Kids Are All Right

Most kids, most of the time, are totally doing the right thing. They are listening to you, being respectful to each other, playing and having fun in activities (they may not have chosen for themselves), and following directions and instructions without incident. Of course, we would all like to have more of that kind of behavior at camp, but almost all of our discussions about camper behavior revolve around what to do when campers are breaking down, falling apart, or having a hard time.

Staying Out of the Point of Struggle

Scene 1: Tabatha, one of your five-year-old day campers, is going through her fussy-eating routine with you at lunchtime again. What happens is now so familiar to you that you’re certain you can play it out in your sleep. You offer her one food choice after another and she alternates between pretending she doesn’t hear you and screaming, “You know I hate that!” No matter what you try she doesn’t like it. It almost seems as if she enjoys this “dance” with you, even though the stress is taking a toll on both of you and is beginning to annoy the other children.

Pranks or Projects? How to Make the Last Weeks of Camp Your Best

In late July 2014, I sat on my bed, alone for the first time all day, reeking of garbage and motor oil, and listening to rain pummel the tin roof. Satisfied I’d done my duties for the night, I had started to unzip my raincoat when an angry knock sounded on my door.

Top Training Techniques: Fast & Effective Ways to Increase Staff Learning & Performance

Michael Brandwein imageThe number one best-selling author in camp training has packed this session with terrific activities and training methods that are easy to use and can be plugged into your existing training right away. Save many hours of time by using these highly acclaimed, practical techniques. Increase staff attention, participation, and retention.

Webinar participants will learn how to: