Horseback riding, canoe wars, Frisbee golf, anxiety, loneliness, and stomachaches - summer camp can be a bittersweet mix of fun activities and homesick moments. Separation from parents and home is an important developmental milestone for children, but homesickness can put a real damper on a kid’s experience.
Ask anyone who has ever been to overnight camp about their experience, and you will hear endless tales of comradery, cabin mates, and campfires. Many times, campers will say overnight camp was the first time they rode a horse or shot a bow and arrow or flew down a zip line. It’s where they learned to make their beds and keep their belongings tidy in cramped quarters. With the perfect blend of adventure and responsibility, camp life teaches kids valuable lessons they can use for the rest of their lives.
I’ve been teaching private flute lessons for almost 20 years and the number one question parents ask me remains, “How much should my child be practicing?” Parents are investing a lot of time and money on private music lessons for their child and it absolutely makes sense to ask how to make the most out of such an investment. Should you be pushing and enforcing a regular practice routine on your child? Is it something worth fighting over? Should you (or threaten to) quit paying for music lessons if your child won’t practice?
Whether you live with a young, strategic chess player, a budding hockey player, or an aspiring actor, you’ve probably pondered the best way to encourage your child’s natural gifts and abilities. When is the right time for your child to begin lessons? How can parents encourage persistence, without pushing? And is it even possible to balance the interests and pursuits of all the kids in your care?
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