If your daughter is in second grade, she’s old enough to go to camp!
How do you feel about that, mom? Are you excited? Nervous?
Either way, I’m pretty sure you’ve asked yourself the question, “Is she ready for a week at sleepaway camp?”
I’m not going to answer that question here. I’ve decided to write a separate blog post about that. When I do, you’ll find a link to it here.
This time, I’d like to back up a step. If your child is young (second, third, fourth grade), why are you even asking yourself if she’s ready? Is it worth it to send her now? Why not just wait till she’s older? Somewhere around fifth grade seems like a perfect time to enjoy sleepaway camp.
I’ve been thinking about this lately and here’s the bold statement I’m going to make:
If you want to get the greatest benefit out of camp for your daughter at every age, start sending her as soon as possible.
I believe that the benefits of camp compound over time. The sooner you make the initial investment, the more time that investment has to grow.
Starting young and spending time there over the years matters because camp is a community, not an event.
At the ripe old ages of 11 and 8, my kids have a home away from home. They have something they look forward to all year and a place where they know they will meet old friends and new. It’s a place with traditions they have already learned to love and people that feel like family. It’s also their own special place, not shared with mom and dad. Each year, their knowledge and connections grow. As a result, they feel a sense of ownership which leads them to take opportunities to be leaders.
Danielle “Olli” Hedgepeth has been a camper, CILT, counselor, Division Director, and Assistant Director at camp. Now, she’s a a Cedarbrook board member and a camp mom – our “Insider Mom!” Outside of camp, she is the Director of Children’s Ministries of Loudonville Community Church in Loudonville, NY.