Magazine article Work & Family Life

How Your Child Can Grow from a Camp Experience

Magazine article Work & Family Life

How Your Child Can Grow from a Camp Experience

Article excerpt

How your child can grow from a camp experience

Practicing psychologist, author and school consultant Michael Thompson writes, "I believe that children are often capable of taking responsibility that their parents cannot imagine, and that many children do less well when their parents are watching or supervising them."

Dr. Thompson says also that self-esteem doesn't grow from "parental support" but from kids building skills themselves. And much of the growth in character and confidence that children exhibit takes place outside of school and away from their families.

The coauthor of Raising Cain and other important books on parenting, Dr. Thompson sees the summer camp experience as a perfect example of how kids can benefit from their time away from home. (See front page article.)

Drawing on his visits to camps all over the country, he says they're one of the last places on earth that are reasonably free of electronics. And when you think about it, this opens up a huge amount of space for kids to relate to each other.

Family-style dining teaches patience, respect and cooperation. "You can't manipulate your mother into making something else for you if you don't like what is being served,' Dr. …

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