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Benefits of Exploration Through Summer Programs

By: Mr. Tyler Faubert, Director of Auxiliary Programs
Oddly enough, Summer Programs share quite a few similarities to lunch and dinner buffets across the world. However, Summer Camp’s most important parallels include ample opportunity to explore new activities without a long-term commitment while providing a twist of fun and excitement to the daily routine.

Understanding Summer Camps 
Before delving into the benefits of student exploration through Summer Programs, one must understand the importance of Summer Camps. The American Camp Association estimates more than 14,000 Summer Camps, both overnight and Day Camps, operate across the United States every year. With more than 11-million students attending camps across the country, families have a wealth of options, offering students the opportunity to maintain a daily routine, make new friends with similar passions, and explore new interests in a fun, no-strings-attached atmosphere. On the other hand, students who do not participate in Summer Camps may experience the “summer slide,” or summer learning loss. Research shows, this phenomenon will likely lead to a student losing the equivalent of up to two months of academic instruction. Students attending Summer Programs are able to not only retain, but also enhance math, reading, and writing skills throughout June, July, and August. As a bonus, attending summer programs allows students to maintain a routine, which brings a whole slew of benefits for children, adolescents, and teens alike. Maintaining a routine helps build confidence and independence, especially with school-aged children. Furthermore, Summer Camps can produce healthy habits, constructive behaviors, and a sense of stability during a time when children might be home instead. For many of the working families around the world, knowing your child is safe and having fun while at work yields a piece of mind.

Endless Opportunity 
Much like your favorite lunch or dinner buffet, Summer Programs come in all shapes, sizes, and offerings. Maybe you want to try a new dish, or indulge in your favorite meal in copious amounts for a discounted price. Summer Programs give families a choice when it comes to trying something new each week, or the option to participate in the same activity for as long as it’s available. Some families focus on a singular subject, while many others focus on wide-ranging selections. Either way, Summer Camps are unique in creating an environment for families to tailor a camp schedule to the exploration of new ideas and activities or the development of a former interest. Typically, programs offer a broad range of selections to choose from encompassing the arts, athletics, and academics. Campers can play basketball in the morning, soccer in the afternoon, and the next week, discover oil painting or develop a brand new app. The possibilities are endless for families to mix and match camp schedules to fit a child’s interest in any given week. The choice may differ from family to family, and camps encourage families to test the waters. Why not try something new in combination with a current interest each week? The benefits of exploring new or old interests and activities are endless, but most importantly, it gives the camper confidence outside of their comfort zone, and, as an added bonus, the nature of many summer programs allows for families to decide, to an extent, how long to participate in the camp.

Decide Your Commitment 
Much like a dinner buffets allow you to select your commitment level, offering by-plate, by-visit, and unlimited options, Summer Camps, many times, have opportunities for the morning, afternoon, and full-day sessions, well as, extended care options. However, at a minimum, most Day Camps will offer as little as three hours a day and as many as six hours a day, with discounts for multiple registrations also available. Aside from the commitment to time, families are no longer bound to the same subject area for weeks on end. Campers can enrich acting skills in the morning with a high-level coach, learn the basics of coding in the afternoon with a local engineer, and attend an Academic Workshop the very next week. With Summer Programs, you are not tied down or married to your choices and are able to plan the summer one week, two weeks, three weeks, or all at once. The choice is up to you!  More importantly, Summer Programs give families the chance to maintain a daily routine without having the school day as a crutch. Let’s face it, the number of working families is rising, and the number of students who require care from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm will benefit significantly from a busy, but fun routine, as compared to playing video games at home with a babysitter. In short, Summer Programs allow students on summer vacation to explore new ideas on a week-to-week basis while maintaining similar hours and timelines as the school day’s routine.

Exhilarating Enjoyment
A routine can be one of the most critical aspects of daily life, and much like a buffet provides a fun twist to eating in front of the dinner table or dining out at the usual establishment, Summer Camps offer a balance of enjoyment and excitement while maintaining a vital part of the daily regimen. Think of the last time you went to a buffet. Did you eat with a group of friends, close relatives, for a celebration? Much like the buffet, Summer Programs provide an environment where campers can do something familiar with close friends, try something new with a sibling or cousin, or celebrate with a favorite theme. The bottom line is Summer Camps are exciting, fun, and, most importantly, rewarding for students. At the same time, Summer Camps help families maintain the routine of the school year, but in a much more free and relaxed environment. Participating in Summer Camps provides the internal clock a healthy balance after spending the last 180 days in a classroom setting. Operating hours often remain similar if not exactly the same as a school day, operating from roughly 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and allowing campers a fun extended day option. With the opportunity to differentiate an area of focus after a few hours, adjust subjects from week-to-week, find new passions, explore old passions, and make new friends, Summer Camps are a rewarding and exhilarating approach to break from the day-to-day routine and keep the internal clock in check.

Look No Further
Cape Henry Collegiate’s Summer at the Cape rests on a 30-acre campus just minutes from the Oceanfront. Campers, ages 3-17, will enjoy every aspect of Cape Henry’s beautiful facilities, including passionate teaching staff, high-tech classrooms, a full-service cafeteria, a state of the art outdoor playground, and other fantastic facilities guaranteed to make your summer one to remember! Cape Henry’s Summer Programs span a wide variety of opportunities to accommodate a broad range of student interest. Whether you are looking for artistic enrichment, athletic instruction, or academic enhancement, our programs allow campers the opportunity to develop talents, explore new interests, and, most importantly, have fun during summer vacation! The fun begins in June and runs through August. Reserve your spot today. Space is limited.
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