Here’s a tip for how to plan for summer camp. A great local website — www.campsloop.com, now on its second year — is free to use and offers advanced search capability to help you navigate more than 2,000 area camps.
Camp Sloop lets you search by multiple criteria like themes, exact dates, gender, age, location and price. But best of all, unlike other sites and camp guides, you can download information for side-by-side comparisons, map your camps, “pin” camps to save them for future reference, and see which Facebook friends also are interested in your selections. Blog posts and profiles also give you a more in-depth look at many of the camps.
Camp Sloop co-founders, Rebecca Cole and Rebecca D’Amico, have offered some helpful tips for finding a perfect summer camp match for your child:
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- Determine your budget – The cost of camps can add up quickly with many camps at $250/week or more. Make sure you set a budget before promising your child they can attend a certain camp.
- Make sure the basics work – Make sure you understand the dates, location, costs and times. Is that the week when you have family coming into town? Do you need a morning camp? These are all things you need to make sure you are checking.
- Consider your child’s personality, temperament and interests – Some children are fine attending camp on their own while others need have at least one friend attend with them. Is summer the time for child to experience a new activity or stretch those brain muscles? Think about what your individual child needs to make the most out of summer.
- Call the camp and talk with them about their program – Do the camp directors call you back in a timely manner? Are they interested in your needs and matching your child to their camp? Are they patient when answering all of your questions? These things matter and give you a sense of how the directors view their campers and parents.
- Ask for a daily schedule of activities – Make sure that you understand what types of activities they will be doing throughout the day, when they will be inside versus outside, who is providing food/snacks, etc.
- Ask about camp counselors’ qualifications – Do they have experience with children and/or the camp theme. Are they background-checked and certified in CPR/1st Aid?
- Ask about staff to camper ratios – This can be important to control the chaos and ensure you child has a great experience.
You can read more tips from Camp Sloop for camp planning here.
Parents can register for Camp Sloop for free at www.campsloop.com! They can also check out special camp notices, discounts and activities on Facebook or on Twitter @campsloop.