Washington Family Magazine : April 2015
28 April 2015 washingtonFAMILY.com www.LCDS.org Loudoun Country Day School 20600 Red Cedar Drive, Leesburg VA 20175 • Small Classes Preschool - 8th Grade • Full-Day Kindergarten • Vibrant Middle School • Hands-On Lab and Technology •4th-8thBYOT • Creative and Critical Thinking • Morning and Afternoon Extended Care • Bus Transportation Available Please call Director of Admissions Susan Hower to RSVP or Schedule a Personal Tour 703.777.3841 Loudoun Country Day School Please ask us about our 3 year old program, beginning Fall 2015 BS: My counselors were always pushing me: Pushing me during unit games, pushing me in the cabin towards new activities, pushing me to be a better sailor, and pushing me towards girls at dances. In their own ways they encouraged me to step outside of my comfort zone and take a risk. I developed a trust with them and in turn with the entire camp community. Whether I was on the water, on a field, or in my cabin, I always knew that my counselors and the camp would ‘have my back.’ Responsibility SW: Beyond the buddies, baseballs and bonfires lies the true value of the summer camp experience — a heightened sense of personal responsibility for the well-being of others. That “other orientation” manifests itself in many ways, including a strong sense of connectedness and a commitment to give of oneself. Indeed, research points out that young people who have attended summer camp are significantly more likely than those who have not to feel good about their relationships and to take positive risks, such as volunteering for community service. BS: I met some of the greatest people in the world at camp. In fact, I made such real friendships that the time I spent at camp each summer was enough to make me feel good the entire year. One of many lifelong things I learned at camp is a conscious responsibility to always be there for my friends and for others. Away from camp, I have volunteered as a peer leader, facilitating discussions about alcohol and drug use with middle and high school students and their parents, and I have joined fellow athletes in performing community service. life lessons The summer camp benefits to young people have long been discussed and more recently evaluated. What are they? Simply put, they are opportunities. Opportunities not exclusive to camps but rather concentrated at camp, where under the direction, supervision and influence of caring counselors, young adults can learn to become more independent, more confident, more self- aware, and more giving toward others. These are just some of the life lessons learned at camp. Stephen Wallace, M.S. Ed., author of the book Reality Gap — Alcohol, Drugs, and Sex: What Parents Don’t Know and Teens Aren’t Telling, has broad experience as a school psychologist and adolescent counselor. For more information about Stephen’s work, visit www.stephengraywallace.com. Ben Seifer graduated from Newton South High School where he was a scholar, athlete and newspaper columnist and editor. He completed the Cape Cod Sea Camps’ Counselor Training Program and received the Service Cup for his integrity and selfless contributions to the welfare of others. Ben went on to attend The George Washington University. © Summit Communications Management Corporation 2009 All Rights Reserved Adapted from and reprinted with permission of the American Camp Association®; © 2009 American Camping Association, Inc. The American Camp Association® (ACA) is a national organization; 10,000 members strong, it is actively working with over 2,700 camps. ACA is committed to collaborating with those who believe in quality camp and outdoor experiences for children, youth, and adults. ACA provides advocacy and evidence-based education and professional development, and is the only national accrediting body for the organized camp experience. For more information, visit www.ACAcamps.org.