Plan several sleep overs. Resist the urge to pack their bags for them or to check on them while there. If they have a phone, have them leave it at home. This is a good way to practice not having direct or constant contact.
Have them write a good ol’ letter to someone. You will thank me when you receive a letter from camp!
Gear up physically. If you have purchased hiking boots, break them in with a long walk. Especially for teenagers, have them take a mini-vacation from their devices. A couple of hours or a weekend.
Have them write a statement for their social media pages. “Peace out Facebook, I won’t be sharing my day-by-days with you, I will be at camp.” Your teenager may not post that, but maybe something like it. Have them write down their goals.
Make a homesick plan:
Homesickness isn’t entirely bad. It’s great to love your home. It’s sometimes part of the process, and it’s a confidence booster when a camper gets through it.
Make a happy place plan and write it down. This is an amazing opportunity to learn a life skill. Today’s youth go to technology to escape, and studies show this increases their stress. Some ideas might be: taking 10 deep breaths, traveling to a happy place in your mind, packing a certain stuffed animal, shooting hoops, or tossing a football. They are capable of this independence.
Your plan should NOT be, “Give it a couple of days and if you don’t like it, we will come get you.” This will set them up to give it a couple of days and knock the confidence right out of them. Let your camper know what to expect with correspondence. You don’t need to write everyday, but let them know what to expect.
你自己 | Yourself
You are giving your child an incredible gift. I cannot promise you that they won’t lose some socks, that they will love every meal or activity, and that they will adore every counselor. But you are preparing them for college and beyond; you are giving them the freedom to gain confidence, independence, and leadership skills; and you are instilling in them that they can do it.
送孩子去参加夏令营是一个很棒的礼物。虽然我没办法保证在夏令营TA不会丢东拉西，或者报告说他喜欢夏令营的食物、活动，他们也许会说夏令营的老师领队不好。但是你们是在给TA上大学做准备，让他们现在有机会获得自信，独立和团队精神；你在逐渐向他们灌输 – 他们能作好。
Pack self-addressed envelopes in their luggage.
Whether they are flying or driving, refrain from bawling until they can’t see you. Take a deep breath, trust, and remind yourself that you are giving them an awesome gift.