With a chance to explore the wonders of nature, meet new friends and learn essential team-building skills (coupled with the first-time independence of being away from home), summer camp is arguably one of the most life-changing events for many new campers. It’s important to ensure that your camper gets an exceptional experience, and with a little pre-planning, they will be ready for the adjustment of a summer filled with outdoor activities and new adventures. Now is the perfect time to start planning and preparing for their summer camp adventures. Here are some great tips to get ready.
Starting something new can be challenging and a little frightening. It’s important to calm any fears by discussing these concerns ahead of time with your camper. Our head staff and councillors at camp Ak-O-Mak are available to address these concerns and it’s encouraged to trust the staff to deal with any issues that may arise. Homesickness is common and can be expected with any new camp goer, however it can also be avoided by involving your child in every step of the camp planning process. This helps to avoid adjustment issues or unexpected surprises and can increase enthusiasm and excitement for the time they spend at camp Ak-O-Mak. While you may not get the chance to visit the camp or sit in at orientation, our website is filled with loads of information to answer any frequently asked questions and set reasonable expectations for the time spent at camp. We suggest going through the daily schedule (found on our website) with your camper as this lists some of the activities that can be expected during their stay here. Another helpful tip is to speak with your child and set meaningful goals that they may want to achieve during their time at camp. This ensures a positive and productive time here at camp Ak-O-Mak and can help boost excitement for this experience. Get them involved in the process of creating a list of things to pack and discuss what they feel is necessary to bring to camp. This leads to the next important question – what do I pack?
We suggest you start by creating an organized and detailed list of all the items your camper will need and shop ahead of time for those items. The common essentials (swimwear, shorts, sleepwear, t-shirts, etc.) should be included however no matter how much planning and preparation you do, you can never predict the weather. Remember to include an extra change of clothing for rainy or cool weather (sweaters, rain coats, and boots) and long pants as temperatures dip at night (also to protect from insects and to withstand long hikes). When choosing clothes to pack, make sure all outfits are loose, comfortable and made with well-worn, breathable fabrics to withstand dirt and outdoor use. Other camping essentials include insect repellant, sunscreen with UV protection (SPF 30 or higher), sunglasses and summer hats (with a wide brim for protection against long sun exposure). Outdoor adventures can be expected, so it’s important to include an extra pair of outdoor shoes that can handle muddy or wet terrains. Don’t forget to include several towels, a refillable water bottle for hydration and a flashlight with extra batteries. Other optional items include a journal or writing supplies, a disposable camera and/or a stuffed animal in case your camper gets a little homesick. If your child takes medication or has any allergies, remember to advise our Medical Doctor on Staff and pack any medication (asthma ventilators/puffers, epi pens, antibiotic ointment, etc.) in its original package along with detailed instructions on dosage. To keep your camper’s belongings even more organized, a helpful tip is to label them with their name.
With a detailed list of what to pack, sometimes it’s easy to forget what to leave at home. The beauty of summer camp is it provides the unique chance to escape the chaos of city life and embrace the serene and rustic outdoors. Avoid packing money, jewelry or anything expensive that is likely to get lost, broken or is not easily replaced. Camp is a great venue to learn more about nature while leaving technology behind. This means avoid bringing cell phones, tablets, mp3 players or other portable music players. Meals are also provided to each camper, so please leave candy or junk food at home!
Camp Ak-O-Mak is dedicated to providing a unique program and safe setting for your camper to learn, grow and make new friends in the process. Most importantly, we want to ensure your camper has as much fun as possible and we’re more than happy to help in every step of the way. To learn more on camp programs, speak with the camp Director, or to get answers to additional inquiries on getting prepared for summer camp, feel free to call us at: 416-427-3171. Read the daily schedule, download brochures, registrations forms and more from our website: http://www.campakomak.com. We look forward to your child having an amazing summer at Camp Ak-O-Mak!
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