Tips from the Trenches

. April 1, 2014.
Trenches-header

Margaret Teall, mom of Graham Beaver, 5, and Lila Beaver, 2, of Pittsfield Township

What are your favorite memories of camp? 

I love watching my kids through the window. Seeing my little toddler enjoying camp activities is so sweet. My Urban Toddler camps always end with a family activity, and I love how excited my kids are to teach me the songs and dances they've learned!

What do your kids enjoy the most about summer camp?

My daughter likes the dances and crafts. My son likes the stories, snacks, and games. I enjoy sitting with a cup of coffee and some much needed downtime!

How do you know that they are ready to leave you and go off for camp?

My kids are little adventurers, eager for "big kid" experiences.

How do you choose which summer camp to send your kids to?

My Urban Toddler camps are for children ages 2-5, so my toddlers were able to attend before they were eligible for other camps.
 

 

Graham Beaver (left) enjoying a snack while Lila Beaver (right) poses pretty at My Urban Toddler camp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Molly Nakpairat matches in orange with her clay  instructor (right)

Sharon Nakpairat, mom of Emma,11, and Molly, 10, of Ann Arbor

What do your kids enjoy the most about summer camp?

My kids enjoy the friendly counselors, the inspiring atmosphere and amazing art projects at the Art Center.  At other camps, they enjoy the hands-on learning opportunities that aren’t as structured as school and let their imagination take over.

What do you make sure to pack with your kids when they leave for camp?

We always pack a lunch, sunscreen, bugspray, something to read (some camps have quiet time after lunch and a book is great thing to have along) and a water bottle full of Gatorade. Gatorade is important if the kids are in a warm environment.  Water is helpful but always available at camps. Gatorade gives them electrolytes to help them get through the day.

How do you choose which summer camp to send your kids to?

I have always tried to find camps with topics I know my kids are interested in.  My kids love art, robots, science and animals. In Ann Arbor, there are many quality options for camps that are geared around these areas. Once we have gotten to know the staff at some of the camps, my kids often want to go back to the same camp because they know the counselors and look forward to seeing them the next summer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Emma Nakpairat molding clay at art camp ( left)

Abbey Woodman, mom of Elizabeth, 8, of Ann Arbor 

How do you know that your child is ready to leave you and go off for camp? 

She’s been ready since age 3. She has always been independent. She never had a problem with separation for school.

What do you make sure to pack with your daughter when she leaves for camp?

For day camp, I always send a water bottle and change of clothing. Fun can often equal messy and that’s okay! For overnight camp, we sent her special stuffed animal.

How do you choose which summer camp to send your daughter to?

My child loves reading the descriptions. We choose ones that interest her. We also try to have one friend attending (we like carpooling). Price is also a factor.  She loves camps that involve theater, nature, including water and animals, and anything with other Girl Scouts!

Jennifer Selby, mom of Ava, 9, of Ann Arbor

What do your kids enjoy the most about summer camp?
My daughter loves the opportunity to explore her very creative side, which was definitely possible to do attending the Talking Colors camp. Ava thrived in the environment of the camp, which included excellent hands on instruction and encouragement to explore new techniques and ideas in art.

How do you choose which summer camp to send your kids to?

I do a tremendous amount of research for summer camps, which thankfully includes a lot excellent word of mouth and feedback from other Ann Arbor families. My daughter is also instrumental in choosing which camps sound like the right fit for her. She has been talking about attending “Talking Colors” art camp again since it ended last summer.

What summer camps have you sent your child to, and which ones were her favorite? 

A few top and favorite summer camps have included Talking Colors Art Studio, Ann Arbor Art Center, Leslie Science                      Nature Center and Michigan Academy of Gymnastics.
 

 

 

 

Ava Shelby is excited to attend Talking Colors camp this summer (right)