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CAMPING TIPS



Published: Sun, May 6, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



CAMPING TIPS

The choices

Here are some points to consider when selecting a camp:

Philosophy: Should complement child's personality and style of learning.

Director's background: At least a bachelor's degree and camp administration experience.

Staff: Should be trained in safety regulations, emergency procedures, child-abuse prevention, behavior management and other areas.

Age: Counselors must be at least 16; about 80 percent or more of staff should be 18 or older.

Returning counselors: Typically, about 40 percent to 60 percent return from the previous year. If rate is lower, find out why.

Cost: Fees usually are $75 to $350 per week. Amount covers staffing, food, accommodations and insurance.

Discipline problems: Positive reinforcement and role models, as well as a sense of fair play, are highly regarded.

Special needs: Can include special foods for restricted diets and designated places to store insulin and other essential items.

Visit: Consider seeing the place before enrolling a child.

OTHER ISSUES

Tips for dealing with homesickness and other adjustment problems:

Include child in choosing a camp.

Discuss ahead of time what camp will be like.

Pack a personal item.

Avoid temptation to take child home early, except in cases of high anxiety or depression.

Send a positive note or care package ahead.

Talk to the camp's director.

Source: American Camping Association




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