Category Archives: Programming

Adieu To Traditional Overnight Camps

Instead of telling campers about the French culture, Camp Tournesol gives kids an opportunity to experience it. 
Photos Courtesy Of Camp Tournesol

In 2001, I founded CampTournesol as a vehicle to help French-immersion students embrace and develop their verbal skills in the summer. For several years, I worked towards this goal by developing day camps in different cities in the Greater Toronto area. Since the organization doesn’t own any property on which to operate camps, local schools were rented. In 2006, I began to research the possibility of providing overnight camp experiences to offer a more in-depth opportunity for campers. I faced … Continue reading

Posted in Camp Business, Departments, Issues, Nov/Dec 2013, Programming | Leave a comment

Secrets For Success

While it may be easy to
train people in skills
such as archery,
training people to think of others can be difficult.
Photos Courtesy Of YMCA Of Arlington, Texas

All kids need a little camp in their lives! The fellowship and joy of the camp experience  must be made available to as many children as possible. Currently, too many children spend too much time looking at TV or other screens, and not enough time with others. Camp involves playing outside in the fresh air and learning to get along with other children. The experience may include swimming, making crafts from items one might never have thought of using, and … Continue reading

Posted in Camp Business, Departments, Nov/Dec 2013, Programming | 1 Comment

Evaluating Summer Camps

When it comes to program evaluations, simple, direct questions can yield answers that provide critical information on what the agency is doing well.
Courtesy Of Jill Korsok, Mentor Recreation Department

Now that summer is over, most agencies will breathe a collective sigh, and begin to evaluate which camp programs were successful and which were not. Most agencies examine enrollment numbers and revenue, staffing issues, the effectiveness of cost-control measures, and other issues. But how does an agency know if it has hit the mark with campers? How does it identify effective customer service or ways to be successful in future summers? It is fairly simple to measure revenue against previous … Continue reading

Posted in Camp Business, Programming, Sept/Oct 2013 | Leave a comment

No Props—No Problem

Let partners take turns being in the driver's seat during the Trust Drive. 
Photos Courtesy Jim Cain

For those moments when you have plenty of time and space, but absolutely no equipment, here are four activities to help create something wonderful. The Invisible Obstacle Course This warm-up activity is half-creativity and half-physical fitness. Each small group creates an imaginary obstacle course, with group members crawling, jumping, running, and helping each other through the obstacles they encounter. A volunteer in each group begins the activity. After each element, leadership changes, and another member describes an obstacle, and then … Continue reading

Posted in Camp Business, Jul/Aug 2013, Programming | Leave a comment

Outdoor Education Programs

Photos Courtesy Brian Thomas, Plano Texas schools

Sometimes known as outdoor school, school camping, outdoor education, or environmental education, a Residential Outdoor Environmental Education (ROEE) program is not summer camp, and it’s not school; it’s the best of both. In general, ROEE programs are longer field trips for school groups. The majority of the programs serve 5th and 6th graders, but most programs work with any age. Usually, camps and retreat centers contract with schools to provide classes that fit into a basic schedule; the classes are … Continue reading

Posted in Camp Business, Departments, Issues, Jul/Aug 2013, Programming | Leave a comment