The words "Summer Camp" can mean different things to different people. It's important to note, though, that what kids take away from the camp experience itself is what matters most, not the actual things kids DO at camp or WHERE the camp takes place.
If you went to camp when you were a kid, you probably have specific memories of the program you attended, what it looked like, the friends you made, the counselors you had, and the activities you enjoyed while you were there.
If someone were to ask you today what summer camp means to you, your definition would probably be shaped by the camp experience (or experiences) you had as a child.
Well, guess what? We've been curious lately about other people's thoughts and opinions as to what summer camp means to them, so today we decided to do something about it. We hit the streets (it was rainy today here in L.A.!) and flagged down a few strangers just to ask how they'd describe a typical summer camp setting.
Guess what? The vast majority said when they think of camp, they picture rustic, ranch-type properties with lakes, mess-halls, cabins, canoes, horseback riding, s'mores, and songs around the campfire.
That's pretty classic image of a traditional summer camp program, don't you think?
But there's just one thing we hope you'll remember.
Even though "traditional" camps are fun, fun, fun, there's untold numbers of other kinds camps, and they all provide meaningful experiences for kids. In other words, you don't have to send your child to a "traditional" camp in order for them to have the best summer of their lives!
Here's what I mean.
What if your son really loves music? Why not send him to a music summer camp?
If your daughter loves cooking, a cooking summer camp might be just up her ally.
Or maybe you have another child who loves gymnastics. She'd probably be happy as a calm at a gymnastics camp program.
The main point to keep in mind is that there are many kinds of summer programs here in L.A. beyond just the traditional summer programs you might envision. All you need to do is look around, ask your friends, or do an online search for whatever kind of program your child might be interested in and you will quickly find one that meets your needs.
Blog posts by Cora Carter of L.A. Summer Camps.com