Five Ways To Keep In Touch While Your Kid’s At Camp
Do you have kids who go away to camp? Tell me what it’s like…to have kids who go away in the summer. And don’t need your constant attention or need you to keep them busy or want you to take them to the pool or feed them 3 or 4 times a day(!).
I have children I don’t think will ever make the leap to sleep away camp. I could be wrong, but I’ve come to accept that summer will be my time to remember why I had two kids even though it’s so much easier now than it was when they were under 3.
For now sleep away camp will remain a glorious dream.
When I went to camp, I loved hearing from home because I was constantly inexplicably homesick. Even though I was having fun at camp and even though I would be having no fun at home. A lot of kids need a little love from home to feel comfortable out of their normal routine. Also some lovely models of children simply like getting cool things from home to share with friends at camp.
Here are five ways to keep in touch with your camper while they’re having fun and occasionally feeling homesick.
Send Mail Ahead, Make Replying Easy
A friend’s mother would always send her daughter off to camp with mail waiting at camp for her to open on arrival. She also sent her off with stationary, addressed envelopes, and to encourage more writing than “Camp Is Fun” she included prompts to open her up, like “Tell us the funniest thing that’s happened at camp so far.”
Indulge Their Desire To Be “Cool”
Do the kids at camp love trading cards? Candy? Find out what the kids at camp like trading or consider especially valuable and send it along with them. This is one of those times it’s okay to indulge your kid in a little peer pressure.
Start a Craft Trend
Do you remember making friendship bracelets from embroidery floss? I spent many hours making specially ordered bracelets for my best pals at camp. What about beaded friendship pins to stick on your shoelaces? Help your kid be a trend setter at camp and send along everything they need (and enough extra to share) to make these fun little crafts. Here’s a great tutorial and supply list for friendship bracelets and another for the friendship pins.
Send “Fun” Mail
Don’t just send letters off to camp. Try sending along pictures of pets, siblings and friends from home, maybe in a cute picture frame. Hung up in their cabins and they let their new pals know who they are at home. Mad Libs are a great cabin activity kids can do together and I know if I sent a teen celebrity magazine to any cabin my daughter was a part of, she would never even consider missing her family again.
Camping With Technology
If your kid has access to a computer or even a cellphone (though don’t get me started on why eight-year-olds think cellphones are must haves) try sending emails and pictures over the net. This is undeniably the quickest way to keep in touch and have back and forth conversations about what’s going on at camp. Other clever ways to use technology to keep in touch: sign your kid up for a private Twitter account and send and get updates throughout their big adventures. If your kid has a camera, have them email digital files they’ve got of friends at camp and send back prints for them to share with friends.
If you’ve got a kid at camp, what creative ways do you keep in touch?