Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sign Kids Up For Summertime Fun With Custom Camps

One childhood memory which will forever stand out for me was a week-long adventure at 'Lone Star' ranch, a sprawling ranch near the area where I lived. This week out in the bush was my version of today's summer camp. I grew up in Africa, so when I say 'the bush', I mean the kind with lions, elephants, crocodile-infested rivers, unfriendly snakes (actually many unfriendly slithering things) - it was an adventure!

We camped in tents along the banks of a river, we 'showered' behind a makeshift curtain, with buckets of ice-cold water from the river, we would huddle together and "shine fangs" (brush teeth) by flashlight each night, we ate around a blazing campfire, and we drank warm tea sweetened with condensed milk . Breakfasts were always epic: there is nothing like the smell of bacon and eggs sizzling over a campfire at dawn to bring sleepy-eyed teenage girls out of their tents! During the day we went on all kinds of adventures in the bush, we learned to track animals; we studied indigenous plants; we climbed rocks and we swam in croc-free waterfalls (at least that's what they told us . . .) At night we talked around the campfire until our camp counselors hustled us off to bed, and then we'd lie sprawled on the tops of our sleeping bags whispering, giggling and listening to the sounds of the night: distant grunts, calls, splashes, and the not-so-distant rustles, slithers, scuffles.

I shudder now at how rudimentary things were, but I also envy that teenage girl who so gamely entered into this adventure and learned not only about animals and plants but also about herself. Most of all though, I remember the camaraderie of a group of teen girls on this rite of passage together.

My daughter is still too young for camp, but the time will come when she'll be ready and I'm determined that she will have the chance to experience her version of what I had. KinderCare is going to help me achieve this goal: here is an organization that recognizes how important it is to help fulfill our childhood need for adventure and fun!

To fiure out how our children would like to spend their summers, KinderCare surveyed nearly 3,000 kids! They found out that what kids want is adventures, arts, crafts, and trips. They responded by partnering with teachers to design a nationwide summer camp program to provide kids with activities pertaining to their interests. They developed 12 unique week-long day camps with themes including Wild, Wild West, Wilderness 101, Dig Ancient Egypt, You've Got Talent!, Puppeteer Road Show, Gross & Gooey Science, Spectacular Sports, Animal Antics, Science Adventures, Art Expo, Kids' Kitchen, Splish Splash, Surfs Up!, and Everyday Heroes.

With such a diverse range of camp options, you'll be able to find something cool within KinderCare's Summer Camps to keep your child happily occupied, No matter what their interests are. The weeklong timeframe of the camps also gives parents the flexibility to sign their kids up for as few or many sessions as they'd like.

With approximately 1,700 centers located in 39 states and the District of Columbia, KinderCare Learning Centers, an accredited early childhood provider, offer a range of educational programs and after-school care for infants as young as six weeks old to school-aged children through age 12. Run by specially trained, passionate teachers who fully embrace a balanced approach to learning, KinderCare Learning Centers aim to educate and entertain children within nurturing environment, and encourage strong communication between families and teachers.

For more on the KinderCare Summer Camp Program, visit KinderCare’s website: http://www.kindercare.com/summercamp.

“I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of KinderCare and received a gift certificate to thank me for taking the time to participate.”