Alyson Schafer, psychotherapist, author, and parenting expert, wrote for Mabel’s Labels on sending your kid to summer camp, and the things they can learn there (if you let them).
“Camp itself allows kids to build their psychological muscle,” she says… and helps them face “social” challenges without looking to Mom or Dad to intervene.
“For example, they’ll be served food they don’t like without the ability to whine for mom to make them their preferred meal. You don’t always get your way at camp. That is the “iron clad logic of social living” as personality theorist, Alfred Adler would say.”
How your children respond to uncertainty & unfamiliarity reveals their internal attitudes and expectations that may not be helpful in the long run… Do they call you on the cell phone you had them smuggle in? Do they shut-down and avoid interacting with their peers? Or do they look for ways to bring comfort and fun to their new environment?
Help your child learn this important lesson from Dr. Adler: “In life, you can’t always change your situation, but you can always change your attitude about your situation.” Share this quote with your kids. Talk about it…
“And do you know what camp miracle happens then? Your child will discover that they CAN change their attitude and look for ways to make the situation better, and that it works!”
Are you sending your kids to camp this summer? Have you thought about how to equip them with the social tools they need to thrive? For parenting advice and insight into how children think, check out Alyson Schafer’s books and seminars today!