How Computer Summer Camps Can Break Down Gender Barriers

technology camps for kids girls camp computer camps Decreasing the Gender Gap in STEM Fields
Reshma Saujani is the founder of the nonprofit organization Girls Who Code, which is inspiring and educating girls in computing skills in order to close the gender disparity in the computer science field. According to Saujani, only 27% of America’s jobs in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and math) are held by women. As this sector of the American economy mushrooms, it is becoming increasingly important to get more students – and girls in particular – interested in math and science, whether through schools, or summer camps, or independent organizations like hers. In her December 2013 article in the New York Times, Saujani highlights a few ways in which this sector can generate stronger engagement from girls. Many of her points reflect the benefits of computer and technology summer camps across the country, which can be found at Camppage.com.

Computer Summer Camps Engage Girls Through Personalized Context
Saujani writes, “Studies have shown that girls want to pick careers that enable them to engage with and change the world; and women learn science better when it is taught in their life context, not in a vacuum.” By integrating all of the fun elements of summer camp with the enriching education of computing skills, kids get the opportunity to explore how this path can relate to their own interests. The best computer summer camps offer hands-on experiential education that provide community and an enriching, unique environment for campers to learn and experiment. Specialized instruction combines specific skill development with project-based curricula to give campers context and an ultimate goal.

Creating Important Role Models for Girls and Boys
Saujani brings up another point about the importance of role models, especially as portrayed by the media. “[With] so few female coders in the ‘real world,’ girls just can’t picture themselves growing up to be a programmer, an engineer or a start-up entrepreneur.” This gap points to what is perhaps the most impactful aspect of computer summer camps, or any kind of summer camp for that matter: camp counselors and instructors fill a special niche of mentorship for kids and teens. As counselors, they fall somewhere in between an authority figure and a friend. As instructors, they serve as influential examples of success and leadership in a particular field. So counselors at computer summer camps can fill both of these roles to become powerful role models to break down stereotypes and relate to their campers on a personal level.

Help expand your daughter’s confidence and her personal vision by encouraging her interests in science and technology. You can explore the myriad opportunities for technology and computer summer camps at Camppage.com.

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Summer Camp is an Important Developmental Step for Kids and Parents

parents kids parenting outdoor adventure camps 2 camps for kids 2 art summer camps adventure camps In an article from the Washington Post, Michael Thompson, the author of Homesick and Happy: How Time Away from Parents can Help a Child Grow, is interviewed about the effects of early childhood independence. He purports that, if approached properly, experiences like sleepovers and summer camps have short- and long-term health benefits for the whole family.

Help Kids Build Resilience
In this article, Thompson explains that independent overnight experiences are one of the first big developmental steps that children take. “At some point, all children are going to have to be independent, and a safe place to practice that is camp.” Summer camp is the first experience in many kids’ lives where their victories are theirs alone, Thompson explains. If kids are scared or uncomfortable, they have a communal network of counselors and new friends; but it is ultimately they who must overcome the challenges. Summer camp is a safe and fun opportunity for kids to start building personal and social resilience.

The Lifelong Benefits of Attending Summer Camp
This first step towards independence offers critical skills and experiences that can have long-lasting positive effects. While summer camp still has a great infrastructure of support, it requires kids to leave behind the comforts and familiarities of home. It generates fresh personal and social dynamics and introduces new realms of responsibility for young kids. Furthermore, the summer camp exposes kids to independence while simultaneously introducing them to the challenges and joys of community living. Thompson asserts that the psychological impact that this sort of experience can persevere into adulthood: “When you are in college, discouraged and overwhelmed, does your mother get you through? No. But the experience of being out in a thunderstorm on a hiking trip and knowing you survived — that just might.”

Tips for Preparing Your Family for Summer Camp
Thompson suggests that before you throw your child into a ten-day backpacking excursion, you might ease into the world of overnight separation with a sleepover at a relative’s or close friend’s house. Be sure to address all medical issues up front – medicines, allergies, etc. Talk openly about the possibility of homesickness, and how you will both deal with it. If you are preparing for summer camp, it might be helpful to have a conversation with the administration about their policies on phone calls and writing letters or sending packages. Finally, as a parent, make sure you are tuning into your own emotions. Sending your child away for summer camp or even a sleepover is a difficult new hurdle; so be sure to take this time to focus on yourself and fulfilling your own needs. More information about addressing homesickness and sending care packages can be found on the Camppage.com resource page.

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Girls’ Summer Camps Break Down Barriers

summer camps summer camp 2 girls camp camps for kids 2 Rachel Simmons, cofounder of the Girls Leadership Institute and author of “Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Confidence and Courage,” provides a picture of the dramatic disparity of girls in leadership positions. In an op-ed article for CNN, Simmons explains that the reason that girls are not occupying the top political positions in schools or in civic representation is due to the way we as a society are raising our young ladies. According to Simmons, girls are “socialized to be likeable, to please others, to not tout their own successes and to speak softly like proper girls. As a result, they face powerful psychological barriers to attaining leadership roles.” Simmons is a strong proponent of girls’ summer camps as a means to shifting this problematic trend. At the Girls Leadership Institute and girls’ summer camps around the world, young women are breaking down their barriers to leadership, confidence, and courage.

Some of the Most Powerful Aspects of Girls’ Summer Camps are Between the Camp Activities
Girls summer camps certainly use an impactful curricula and challenging elements to engage their participants, but it’s not just the ropes courses and theatre productions that draw the campers out of their comfort zones. Simmons’s article states that “organizations such as the Girls Leadership Institute teach girls as young as 5 to express their feelings with friends and how to be assertive.” She challenges our educators to demand the same of its female students. Perhaps they could take a page from the book of girls’ summer camps: when there are 8 to 12 girls sleeping in one room and spending all of their waking hours together, there is a strong need for clear communication and introspection in order to ensure that everyone is comfortable. Additionally, reflections on challenge courses or after disputes necessitate that girls assert themselves and communicate their needs and feelings.

Girls’ Summer Camps Have Inspiring Role Models
As Simmons points out in the article, parental encouragement plays a huge role in a child’s confidence and sense of self. She points to statistics that indicate a significantly higher number of boys encouraged by their mothers to run for office than girls. We base our decisions off of the models around us, so it makes sense that this gender disparity continues. But at girls’ summer camp, young women are surrounded by powerful female role models. They see older, inspiring women in authoritative roles; and they build trust with and receive encouragement from these women. A seemingly simple relationship such as this can have profound impact on a young girl, inspiring her to grow up and become like the leaders she has at camp.

Girls Summer Camp Activities Eliminate Gender Norms
When campers are isolated by gender at summer camps, there is a blurring of social norms. Steering the canoe or carrying the hay for the horses is not seen as the “boys’ job,” and girls are free to act with liberal demeanor without worrying about impressing the opposite sex. They are not too cool to get up on the ropes course, and find themselves less likely to fear falling or making a bad impression in front of the boys. This liberating and supportive environment boosts confidence, courage, and self-assertion – all traits that Simmons says are necessary to bring girls up to social equality.

Camppage provides information on all sorts of summer camp programs all over the US and Canada.

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Sports Summer Camps for Girls

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Sports Summer Camps are a Great Way for Parents to Encourage their Young Girls

Article author Laura Sullivan suggested that even if parents don’t play the sport that their daughter is interested in, this gap shouldn’t deter their level of encouragement and enthusiasm. They can help her find the ideal tennis camp or general sports camp that suits their daughter’s skill level and the family’s schedule. This gesture, in conjunction with an affirmative attitude towards her athletic endeavors, will lay an important foundation in her pursuit of a sport she loves.

Girls’ Sports Summer Camps Introduce A Variety of Sports During an Important Window of Time
According to the article, Dr. Snyder explains that girls enter sports later and leave more quickly than their male peers. Therefore, it is all the more important to introduce a variety of options during that window of time. Sports summer camps are ideal such introductions to multiple sports as well as for expanding that window by hooking girls’ interest. A dynamic curriculum in a supportive atmosphere with new friends creates the perfect set of circumstances for engaging girls on a long-term commitment to both sports and the summer camp experience.

Girls’ Sports Summer Camps Emphasize Confidence and Character
Lastly, girls’ summer camps are structured around building many of the important aspects of a young girl’s character that are often trodden on by other social influences – confidence, leadership, self-assertion, and the like. Today’s young women need a safe space where they develop these imperative pieces of their identities. By using sports as a vehicle, these campers are provided the same opportunities and personal challenges as the boys. Sports summer camps help girls not only meet their needs in the areas of physical health, but in their emotional and social health as well.

Camppage provides information on all sorts of summer camp programs all over the US and Canada.

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Why Music Education Matters and the Benefits of Music Summer Camps

summer camps summer camp 2 performing arts camps music camp Writer and professor Laura Lewis Brown thoroughly details the benefits of music education in an article on the PBS Parents website titled ”The Benefits of Music Education“. Citing a number of studies and industry professionals, she highlights the social and mental advantages of early music integration. Many of these perks are maximized with intensive study like music summer camps.

Music Education at Summer Camps Develops Diverse Capacities within the Brain

According to Brown’s article, playing music integrates large and small muscle groups as well as multi-sensory activity and responses. This makes music a great tool for social and mental development for young children as well as young adults. That is why music summer camps offer targeted programming for different age groups. Young kids ding bells and beat percussion instruments while older kids start to fine-tune their finger placements and reading abilities. Some camps let campers dabble in a variety of orchestra, band, and even electronic instruments, each of which demands attention from different muscle and mental functions.

Intensive Study like at Music Summer Camps can Actually Change the Brain

One study in Brown’s article found that kids who underwent intensive music training actually experienced a change in the areas of their brain associated with fine motor skills and sound discrimination, and even an overall jump in IQ. Another study indicated that music education improves the spatial-temporal skills, which helps with critical reasoning and fields like math, art, and engineering. Intensive study at music summer camps could not only kick-start these cognitive benefits at an early age, but could also ignite a lasting passion that provides these advantages over the span of a lifetime.

Variety Offered by Music Summer Camps Enriches Campers’ Experiences

Music summer camp provides the arena for kids to dive into an immersive musical environment, which is helpful for a number of reasons. Unless kids are in a program to train for Juilliard, their music summer camp will most likely balance music education with a number of other activities. Variety allows kids to switch gears and focus on some of the other skills mentioned in the article that correspond with music education. For example, going out and playing soccer after practice also helps kids develop motor skills and spatial awareness in a different context. Kids who shift their attention to games or artwork will ultimately be applying the skills they were developing in their music sessions through other mediums.

 

 

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Connecting with Kids via Art and Arts Summer Camp

summer camps summer camp 2 arts and crafts camps art summer camps In a recent article on the PBS Parents website titled “Connecting with Kids Through Art” by Grace Hwang Lynch, an art class volunteer, she emphasizes the importance of art in children’s lives and offers ways to encourage creativity and art appreciation. While parental engagement is important, many of the suggestions Lynch makes parallel the benefits of arts summer camps.

Arts Summer Camps Develop Creative Expression and Reflection

Lynch’s first suggestion is to “Talk with kids about their creations,” explaining that dialogue about kids’ artwork helps develop competence and confidence. At arts summer camp, counselors acknowledge that processing kids’ reactions and feelings is just as valuable in the creative process as creating the artwork itself. Kids are encouraged to use their imagination not only to create their own artwork, but also to engage with their peers in group projects or one-on-one reflections.

Arts Summer Camps Encourage Focus

Lynch says, “Painting, drawing or sculpting forces us to stop multitasking and focus on the project at hand, as well as the person we’re doing it with.” With all of the distractions around us, even within traditional summer camps where kids can choose volleyball, hiking, swimming, arts and crafts, language courses, or archery, or, or, or – it sometimes feels impossible to sit down and focus on one task. Counselors at arts summer camp encourage children to fully engage in the creation of their masterpieces; to not get frustrated and give up or get distracted if the outcome isn’t perfect. The opportunity to hone this skill in a fun setting like arts summer camp offers a monumental (and increasingly difficult) life skill.

Arts Summer Camps Encourage Appreciation of Diversity and Culture

Finally, Lynch highlights the arts as an expression of culture. Arts summer camps help kids become acquainted with different traditions, holidays, culinary or musical art forms. Some arts summer camps have field trips to local museums (another suggestion on Lynch’s list); and other camps integrate this value into dynamic programs. Kids can touch, hear, or visualize differences before they can express them; the creative use of different mediums helps kids embrace diversity of expression and existence.

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The Benefits and Concerns Around Kids and Sports

summer sports camps summer camps summer camp 2 sports summer camp girls camp camps for kids 2 boys camp A recent article from the NYU Child Study Center interviews the Center’s sports psychologist and Clinical Assistant Professor, Dr. Marianne Engle, on some of the benefits and concerns around kids and sports. Sports summer camps not only offer many of the benefits mentioned by Dr. Engle, but they also address a number of the concerns in their diverse and health-centric programs.

Sports Summer Camps Capitalize on the Benefits of Sports

According to the article, research shows that sports boost self-esteem while reducing anxiety and depression; they also provide a venue for building social skills and individual strengths like critical thinking, respect, leadership and coping. While club teams and leagues offer many of these benefits, sports summer camps are unrivaled in the character development arena. For many kids, sports summer camps are the first experience away from home in which kids can explore full independence and their personalities in a totally foreign environment. They immediately learn to relate to a new social group while building athletic confidence and respect for new teammates.

Diverse Opportunities of Sports Summer Camps

Dr. Engle explains that school-age children should focus on skill development and team building before specializing in one sport. Even if kids have chosen a particular sport, trying different positions is helpful to build mental awareness and fully understand the game. Sports summer camps encourage this sort of diversification – especially traditional summer camps with many sports offered in a long list of activities. Campers can test out individual sports like martial arts or horseback riding in the morning, and then team sports or crafts in the afternoon. Even if they stick with baseball all session long, they have the flexibility to try out different positions.

Sports-based Concerns Addressed by Sports Summer Camps

This article addresses a dramatic decrease in physical education, claiming that fewer than one out of four children attend a school PE class. This alarming statistic makes summertime physical activity all the more important. At the other end of the spectrum, Dr. Engle warns against early competition and specialization – a rising trend in young athletes that can lead to physical injury and burnout. Sports summer camps encourage variety as well as safe and proper mechanics taught by qualified coaches and counselors to avoid both of these issues. The whole point of sports summer camp is to get kids excited about being outside – whether they find a passion, a new friend or a simply an enjoyable experience.

Camppage provides information on all sorts of summer camp programs all over the US and Canada.

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Sports Summer Camps as an Alternative to Competitive Club Teams

summer sports camps summer camps summer camp 2 sports summer camp girls camp camps for kids 2 boys camp Writer Carol Mithers recently wrote a critique of competitive youth sports for Parenting.com. She highlights the booming trend of cleat-wearing tots and 8-year-old soccer players running sprints, and offers insight about the emotional and physical health risks of specializing in sports at a young age. In contrast to this trend, summer camps engage kids in a wide diversity of activities. Many sports summer camps offer introductory sessions for kids test out a variety of sports while focusing on values like team-building, personal accountability, and physical fitness.

Sports Summer Camps Allow kids to go at their own Pace

As sports-medicine specialist Paul Stricker, M.D., explains in the article, many kids are being pushed in physical and mental areas that they simply haven’t developed yet. Unlike a competitive club team that sets a universally high bar, sports summer camps create enriching experiences that correspond with the pace set by each camper. Campers decide what activity to take on and the degree to which they want to pursue it. While some intensive sports summer camps do have a rigorous and competitive agenda, they often offer programs with varying levels of intensity. You can contact the sports summer camp admissions representative for more information.

The Diversity Offered at Sports Summer Camps also Protects Athletes’ Health

One of the trends Mithers notes in the article is young athletes’ injuries from overuse – an issue that used to be treated predominantly in adults. Almost all of the injured athletes had one thing in common: they started playing one sport exclusively starting at age ten or younger. Excluding the occasional prodigy, most kids don’t know what they want at that age or have the focus to pursue it 100%. As Dr. Daniel Gould, Ph.D., director of the Institute for the Study of Youth Sports at Michigan State University explains, “‘Most elite athletes have a history of playing many different sports, and there’s a reason for that…Each teaches something different: Soccer gives you foot skills; baseball teaches you eye-hand coordination.’” By dabbling in multiple games and activities at sports summer camps, kids may learn that they enjoy more than one sport, or want to balance their tennis practice with building robots. This diversity advances their mental development as well as protecting their physical health by strengthening multiple muscle groups. Sports summer camps also offer the opportunities to strive, succeed, fail, and experiment in a stress-free and supportive environment.

Camppage provides information on all sorts of summer camp programs all over the US and Canada.

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Tech-Savvy Kids Who Will Impress You

Computer Classes Have Come a Long Way in the Past 30 Years

The exponential advancements in technology in recent decades has spawned the rise of educational programs geared toward youth. While many kids have mastered programs that allow them to learn such crafts as graphic design, filmmaking, and architecture, some innovative kids have taken their computer knowledge to the next level.

Take, for example, UK teens Aaron Sonson, Satwant Singh, and Gregory Paczkowski, who after experiencing stop-and-search tactics by police several times, created Stop & Search, an app that allows people to rate their experiences after being detained by police. Using the app, people can learn about their rights and map their experiences.

Another example of innovative kids using technology Team 2-the-Res-Q, a group of four 14-year-old girls, developed CyberMentors, an anti-bullying Android app for young people, that focuses on building self-esteem and increasing safety. The app includes a messaging feature through which users can talk to a CyberMentors directly about experiences with bullying.

Both teams had gone through the Apps for Good course, a program that facilitates students’ access to hands-on experience of all the steps in new software product development focused on HTML5.

summer camps summer camp 2 digital media camps for kids computer camps camps for kids 2 Zora Ball is another trailblazer. At only seven years old, she’s the youngest person to develop a mobile game app. Zora participated in the University of Pennsylvania’s FATE Bootstrap Expo in 2012 (which is usually only for ages 12 to 16). According to the Philadelphia Tribune, the first-grade programmer was able to reconfigure her app immediately after being asked, proving that she did all of the work herself.

More Girls Are Getting Into the Once-Male-Dominated Tech World

The world of geeks has traditionally been a mostly male one, but leaders in the electronics and programming industries have begun to encourage girls and young women to smash those barriers. As seen above, the next generation of computer innovators includes more girls than ever before.

Technology Summer Camps Help Kids Take Us Into the Future

Technology, engineering, and computer summer camp programs are becoming increasingly popular. Kids are, most assuredly, leading us into the future. Not only on the technological front, this next generation is also reimagining gender roles. Regardless of gender, girls and boys can learn, not just to use, but to create new innovative technologies.

Camppage provides information on all sorts of summer camp programs all over the US and Canada.

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Encouraging News Regarding Childhood Obesity

Preschoolers’ Obesity Rates Falling

While one in eight American preschoolers is obese, that number is only one in seven amongst low-income children. That number has fallen in 19 US states and territories and has only risen in three states.

Sports Summer Camps Offer Ample Opportunities for Physical Activity

Parents concerned about their children’s health might want to consider the advantages of summer camp. As awareness builds around the dangers of high-sugar processed foods, the other culprit in children’s obesity is a lack of exercise. While 15 percent of US kids are obese, 30 percent of American youth overall are overweight.

At sports summer camps, kids participate in activities that are not only fun, but are healthy too. PE is no longer offered in an increasing number of schools, and if they do, most students find the repetitive nature of calisthenics boring. Summer camps offer myriad opportunities for participants to have a good time without even thinking they’re getting exercise.

Some camps offer programs specifically designed to help overweight kids. Instead of focusing purely on physical activity, these programs engage campers on another level, one that helps young people build self-esteem and confidence. There are plenty of opportunities to develop meaningful connections with peers who have faced some of the challenges that come with being overweight, including  social ostracization and being victims of bullying.

Kids Learn Healthier Habits at Summer Camp

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Kids at camp also have the chance to do fun things, like hike, swim, and play cooperative games. Sports activities center around building teamwork and learning how to effectively communicate with others. Those who haven’t participated in sports like baseball, football, basketball, and soccer, before are allowed and encouraged to try new things in a supportive atmosphere.

As they gain new skills, campers will likely acquire the self-assurance to engage in such activities back home. In addition to increased athletic skills, according to several studies, physically fit children do better academically than out-of-shape kids.

To help parents choose which sports summer camp is right for their family, Camppage offers a listing of programs in all regions of the US and Canada. From baseball camp, soccer camp, basketball camp to those geared toward hiking, orienteering, swimming, and horseback riding, you’re sure to find a program that’s just right for your child.

Posted in Adventure Camps, Asthma Summer Camps, Basketball Camps, Camps for Kids, Diabetes Summer Camps, Field Hockey Summer Camp, Football Camps, Golf Summer Camps, Horse Camps, Horseback Riding Summer Camps, Lacrosse Camps, Outdoor Adventure Camps, Running Camp, Soccer Camps, Sports Summer Camp, Summer camp, Summer Camps, Summer Sports Camps, Swim Summer Camp, Swimming & Diving Summer Camps, Tennis Camps, Track & Field Summer Camps, Volleyball Summer Camps | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment