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Summer is Right Around the Corner… & So is Summer Camp

Summer is Right Around the Corner… & So is Summer Camp

Punxsutawney Phil the gopher†saw his shadow this weekend,†so we have six more weeks of skiing, sledding and snow days. And as if on cue, our local new station began describing in detail the foot of snow thatís headed our way.

But amidst all this winter fun, something else is top of mind in February: summer camp. Last week, our mail carrier dropped a camp catalog (complete with images of smiling kids with sun hats) through the door, where landed on top of gloves and boots still clumped with snow.

There are so many kinds of camps for kids: art, theater, sports, music, technology and more. And each one is beneficial and promotes development.†But as you plan your childís summer, consider setting aside some weeks for camps that are based in nature.


In addition to the outdoors being just plain†fun, nature-based camps are a great way for kids to spend hours of lightly-structured time outside Ė something that todayís kids just donít do anymore. And they should.†Studies repeatedly show that time spent outside in nature leads to better health and improvement in cognitive skills, from improved ability to maintain a healthy weight to reduction in ADHD symptoms to a boost in creativity.

If youíre not sure where to begin,†here are three places to get started:

1. Your state or municipal parks and recreation department: My son Benís favorite week of the summer is junior ranger camp at Walden Pond (yes,†that Walden Pond!). Each day includes light hikes, swimming and a series of nature-themed activities, like ponding and plant identification.

2. Your local Audubon Chapter: These camps immerse kids in the plant and wildlife of the habitat around them, be it a beach, forest or pond. When my son and daughter spent two weeks at an Audubon-run day camp on the ocean,†they were teaching†me about marine life.

3. Your local YMCA: Donít live close to a preserve or other natural area? Try a YMCA camp; many include a daily visit to a local park for some outdoor play time.

Weíd love to know: what are your kids doing this summer?

Read more: Children, Environment, Family, Nature, Outdoor Activities, Teens, Uncategorized, ,

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10:27PM PDT on Mar 29, 2014

Thanks for the post.

7:29PM PDT on Mar 29, 2014

Thank you!

11:43AM PST on Mar 1, 2014

good tips

1:24PM PST on Feb 28, 2014

Thank you The Nature Conservancy, for Sharing this!

4:32PM PST on Feb 22, 2014

Thank you

5:01PM PST on Feb 20, 2014


4:37AM PST on Feb 20, 2014

Summer seems wonderful right now. But soon the to hot, sweating, long dry times will be here and some of us will have more breathing problems and allergies, I'd opt for Spring and Fall mostly.
Cost of some camps are to much for most people, plus you take your own lunch when you go with the Y, and with more than one child, camps are only a dream of many kids.

1:14AM PST on Feb 20, 2014

Thanks for sharing!

2:20PM PST on Feb 19, 2014


10:08PM PST on Feb 18, 2014

Nature and summer are a winning combination!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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