By Diane Sutton, Director of Summer Programs, Providence Day
My first experience with summer camp left wonderful memories — the smell of a campfire, the sounds of nature, and the rich taste of s’mores (of course!). What would overnight camp be without these? The interesting part is that these memories were made at a traditional DAY camp, and they helped prepare me for my first overnight camp the following year.
A traditional day camp is often overlooked when families are searching for an exciting summer program for the kids. Today’s families are inundated with camps that focus on a single subject such as soccer, theater, or engineering. These themed programs make a traditional day camp seem boring by comparison, right?
Nothing could be further from the truth! Take Camp Spirit, for example. This traditional day camp at Providence Day School is packed with activities that kids love — arts & crafts, sports & games, water play, and more. There’s also guided meditation, personal safety, outdoor adventure, and wildlife and beekeeping demonstrations. The wide variety of activities to which kids are exposed balances the mental with the physical, the indoor with the outdoor, the creative with the structured, and the individual with the group.
If your children aren’t ready for overnight camp yet, Camp Spirit is one of the best ways to prepare them. With a two-week program of activities developed and led by Providence Day faculty, Camp Spirit teaches kids the wonder of nature, the value of community, and the absolute fun that can be found in a camp close to home.
Of course, Providence Day still offers a wealth of specialty and sports camps in week-long sessions, as well as the most extensive offering of for-credit academics for middle and high school students in Charlotte. So what’s new this summer? Glad you asked! We’ve put together an assortment of unique programs worthy of exploration:
Sports Biz Camp. This full-day camp is taught by two Johnson & Wales University Charlotte professors of Sports Management. High schoolers will learn how to pursue a career in the sports business while they ramp up their passion for sports as a fan and athlete. An insider visit to a major sports venue is the highlight of this week.
Adventure Awaits: Dungeons & Dragons. This is NOT your parents’ D&D! New rules make for less fuss and more fun as campers spin a tale of treachery, excitement, and betrayal. D&D is undergoing a renaissance among millennials and Gen Zers, and this is your child’s opportunity to get in on the fun. Middle school kids won’t even realize they’re developing creativity, learning cooperative team building, and practicing their math skills in this camp that celebrates good old-fashioned storytelling. Dungeon Master Katia McCarthy has been playing and leading D&D for more than 12 years.
Unshakable (for girls). Here’s a camp that goes to the heart of Providence Day as girls in rising grades 2-5 learn how to harness the power and energy they have both emotionally and physically. Activities each day are a combined exploration of a character trait and a physical activity (such as running or an obstacle course), led by Extended Day character education teacher Christy McDermott. By designing and creating their own goals, girls achieve new levels of awareness of character and physical strength. No problem will be too tough to solve because girls are UNSHAKABLE!
Middle School Boot Camp. Independently managing a growing and complex everyday life becomes challenging as kids enter the middle school years. It’s all about making good decisions, and the trick is figuring out how to do this! Enter Middle School Boot Camp, where kids will learn how to find and focus their “superpowers” (individual character strengths) with EFS (executive functioning skills) to successfully manage everyday tasks.
CK’s Red White and STEAM. From CreativeKids, celebrating 25 years as a trusted camp partner of Providence Day School, comes this theater camp. Campers’ minds will be blown as they use science, technology, engineering, arts, and math to solve all kinds of theatrical challenges. Theater is the ultimate collaborative art form, but many students think you must love acting to love theater. Not so! Campers will tell exciting stories while exploring the technical elements of theater including set construction, lighting design, digital storytelling, sound design and costuming. This STEAM camp will spark everyone’s imagination and intelligence!
LEGO Camp: Something to Build On. Providence Day 4th grade teacher Louis Davidson has been a camp counselor for more than 20 years, and his love of science and engineering is second to none. This year he brings his LEGO-love to PD with a camp for rising grades 3-5. Campers will test the limits of their imaginations and gain new skills as they design and build a variety of LEGO structures. Daily games and challenges will keep them on their toes as they build LEGO launchers, creative creatures, cranes, catapults, and more!
Keyboarding for Kids. I remember learning to type on an electric typewriter. Now that computers are all around us, “hunt-and-peck” is STILL not accepted as a proper form of typing. Help your camper accelerate his typing speed and improve his accuracy so that he can focus on content rather than keyboarding. This camp will put your student in rising grades 4-8 on the correct path to 90 WPM pronto!
With nearly 200 camps and academic courses this summer, there truly is something for everyone. As the director of Providence Day Summer Programs, I invite your children to join us this summer to make some lasting camp memories!
For more information, please visit www.providenceday.org/summer.
Click here for the Providence Day Summer Programs brochure.