October 5, 2021
When you think of great leadership, what attributes come to mind? Communication, teamwork, problem solving, and conflict resolution are some of the first that come to mind for many, and happen to be skills that summer camp is distinctly able to build in children.
At summer camp children interact with people of all different places, of all different backgrounds. They can learn to communicate with everyone around them.
By the end of the summer a bunk is a kind of family. They live together, go to activities together, eat together, and learn to operate as one big group. They work like a team. Teamwork is at the heart of the camp experience. And for the same reason, problem solving is a valuable skill that can be learned at camp. Living together for weeks, arguments and disagreements are bound to happen. And while it is the bunk counselors’ job to help smooth them over, it’s often the campers that end up doing the job. Campers develop a kind of problem-solving skill, wrapped up in conflict resolution and all of the rest of these skills, that is unique to camp.
One of the best attributes of camp is that, for the personal side of life, it is a small microcosm of the real world. It allows campers to try new things, to build relationships with people they will remember for the rest of their lives, and to develop important skills that will benefit them in the rest of their lives in a fun environment – an environment that they won’t necessarily feel like they are learning in, but they can nonetheless.