As you know, Camp Highlands is not based in any religion, (even though we have a strong thread of values woven into just about everything we do at camp). That’s why it might surprise you that I say to my 11-year-old camper when he’s acting especially, well, eleven: “Judah, WWJD?!” And I’m not talking about Jesus. While I appreciate that fellow, he doesn’t seem to carry as much weight with Judah as his counselor from this summer, Jordan Taylor. Am I comparing Jordan and Jesus? No. It’s just a short way to say to Judah, “how would Jordan behave in this situation? How would Jordan handle this?”
I know I’ve cited this NYT article Why Camp Counselors can Out-parent Parents before, but it bears repeating. Our favorite camp expert Michael Thompson hits the nail on the head when he says,
“Children love to learn, but they get tired of being taught by adults. Children want to learn from older children, and, at a camp that means older campers, C.I.T.’s (counselors in training) and camp counselors. They want to live with them, emulate them, absorb them. In our age-segregated society, camp is the only place in America where an 11-year-old can get the sustained attention of a 19-year-old. In return for the attention of these “older children,” campers will make sacrifices. They will follow all kinds of rules and adhere to all kinds of rituals that they would likely fight at home.”
Hopefully you’ve seen changes in your boys since they’ve been home from camp. Have they been more confident and willing upon entering a new school? I had one parent email me and say her son had been incredibly helpful during their recent move. She said she thanks camp for that, and reports he’s “turning into a Highlands man.” Music to our ears!
If you haven’t enrolled for next summer, the October 1st deadline for the free store account is quickly approaching. Remember we have a 100% refund policy, should your plans change. Just log in to your account and follow the link to the Camper Application (it’s the green square with the tree in it). We hope everyone has had a good start to the year. We are already counting down to our 111th camping season! We hope to see you there!