Preparing Children for Adulthood – 21st Century Skills

   Camp News

Camp is a particularly effective way to teach critical skills; these include character skills (grit, self control and optimism) and “21st Century Skills” (communication, collaboration, creativity, critical thinking and leadership). Regardless if a child attends private or public school the institution’s challenge is to become a leader in innovation. Are these schools fostering innovation? Some education systems put too much focus on testing thus creating a group of children who become disciplined manufacturers, but not entrepreneurs or innovators.

At the inaugural China Camp Education Conference on the 10th of April, 2015, it was revealed that some of the Chinese leadership is looking at new ways to create long term advantage for their population. The Chinese government has reduced homework until the 4th grade and mandated non-academic afterschool programs. The following is important to know …

  • The economy is global.
  • Market competition is fierce.
  • Businesses innovate.
  • Technology advances.
  • Workplaces adapt.
  • Individuals operate and participate.
  • Jobs and lives change.

What does the aforementioned list have to do with residential summer camp? Well, this is the way of the world we live in the 21st century. And successful adults need more than just 21st century skills. Our world requires successful people to be peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers of all kind. Sleep-away camp offers all of these powerful lessons by teaching the very skills needed to flourish in the future.

Parents that truly understand and value summer camp and send their precious cargo to sleep-away camp have always appreciated camp’s educational potential. Yet the parent who never went to sleep-away camp thinks summer camp as only recreational or skill development. The parents that sent or send their children to my summer camp have always appreciated camp’s educational potential.

According to Wendy Mogel, Ph.D., who wrote the best-selling. The Blessing of a Skinned Knee, says “Parents today find it harder than ever to uphold their own values within their families, when they seem so at odds with those of our current culture. We seek security in a society that seems more and more dangerous, grace that thrives on competition, and gratitude in an age of ever-increasing materialism. How can this generation of parents raise self-reliant, compassionate, and ethical children?” The answer is summer camp, where kids go outside and play.