Thursday, September 13, 2018

Back To School... With 4 Tips from Camp Foley for a Successful School Year!

     By now most all schools have started for the fall which means, sadly, that the freedom of summer is over. The start of a new school years brings much to the table as life transitions back into the routine of early mornings, homework, band practice, sporting events, academic clubs and much more. And by virtue of this transition it means our summer season at Camp Foley is officially done, but that doesn’t mean the lessons, growth, grit, independence and skills gained at camp have to end too.

     Our goal is to help teach and improve upon important life skills your child learns, and specifically, from a summer here at Foley. As we partner with you in the continued growth and development of these skills here are some thoughts on how to help reinforce and continue to grow these skills, both new and old, this school year.

4 Tips for a Successful School Year

  1. Chores. Here at Foley your child learns how to do chores. He/she may have already done them before camp but after their stay at Foley they for sure have been exposed to 2 weeks’ worth of consistent, daily chores. Some of these chores, to name a few, are making their bed every morning, sweeping the cabin, picking up their locker and bunk space, throwing out the trash and cleaning up after meals. Don’t fall prey to old habits and instead continue to challenge your child to grow in these new found skills and routine.
    Tip: Pick 2 chores that your child can do every day. (You pick one and they pick one!) Make a fun chart, keep track and reinforce these new behaviors! If you want to reward you can, otherwise verbal affirmation and accountability is sufficient. 
  2. Tech Free! In case your child forgot, they went 2 weeks without technology this summer… let me say that again, 2 weeks without technology (specifically their phone!) - and they didn’t die! It is possible to unplug and have fun without their phones and devices, and they experienced this. Keep this trend alive and encourage a set amount of screen-less time a day. Use this time to focus on school or help a sibling or play outside… the possibilities are endless.
    Tip: Work with your child to decide on a set time (during the day or a total time) where they will be off devices and come up with a list of things for them to do instead! (Some examples: play outside, learn a new skill, read a book, play a board game, bike ride with friends...)   
  3. Something NEW. Whether it's skills, an activity or friends, your child did something NEW this summer. I guarantee it. Camp brings in people from all over the World and in different stages of life. Your child learned how to interact with others, share and make decisions for themselves. This translates perfectly into walking into a new school year where many might be attending a new school, a new home room or sports teams. Camp has given them experiences to help them thrive in these new found social situations.
    Tip: Remind them of this and give them encouragement to draw from their time at camp. Help that dialogue flow by asking good questions to help them grow as they continue to try and experience new things in life. (sample questions, What's one thing new you did at camp? What did you learn from that situation that can be applied here?)
  4. Goal Setting. A big part of the growth that happened this summer is because of goal setting and follow up. Our counselors are trained to guide campers to set goals, write them down and then follow up with progression on their goals. Successful people practice goal setting and it is an awesome habit to get into, especially at a young age.
    Tip: Sit down with your child and together come up with 2 academic goals and 2 personal goals for the Fall school semester. Make a chart and help track their progress with weekly check-ins and encouragement.   
     Foley’s mission and partnership with families goes beyond the summer. We are here to help and support you all year long! Use these tips above, make your own game plan and stay connected as we aim for continued skill and character development that will lead to a successful school year!


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