We’ve all seen it: the parent who stands on the sidelines criticizing the decisions made by coaches and officials; the one who yells at their own child when they make a mistake; the fan that hurls rude remarks to the opposing team; and the parent who always places blame. Some of us have even had the misfortune of witnessing brawls.
Sleep-away camp was just what Ally needed in order to gain independence and confidence, marvels her mom, Sharon. “She found a whole new group of girls, and had a ball. She’s had a hard time with girls beginning in Grade 4,” says Sharon, “so it was great for her to bond with girls in a different setting.” Starting at age nine, Ally went away to camp for a week. The following summer, she begged to go back for four weeks. Her parents were delighted.
At 10, Ravit Pearlman is a veteran camper. She started going to overnight camp just before her seventh birthday, and she comes from what her mom, Sacha Reich, enthusiastically describes as a ‘camp family.’ Her dad, Aaron Pearlman, went to the same camp as a boy and later became a counselor there. Asked what she looks forward to at summer camp, Ravit doesn’t hesitate, “Seeing my friends again!” Her eyes sparkle as she eagerly outlines the scene: canoeing, the ropes course, bonding with the counselors, whispering to her cabin mates after dark.
If your kids are going to sleep-away camp this summer, you may be wrestling with worries and what-ifs. What if they wet the bed? What if the other kids are cliquish or mean? Will the camp director call me if they’re miserable?
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