Need help making sense of your summer camp options? Here is an overview of the many types of summer camp programs available for kids.
There are currently over 5,500 summer camp sessions listed on Blueprint4Summer, with more sessions being added every day. With so many types of programs and options to choose from, many parents are blown away by the amount of options available to their children. Who knew the St. Louis area had so much to offer for kids in the summertime?
We knew! That’s why we created the Blueprint4Summer to help families see all the options, quickly find the best programs for their child, and make a plan. Our easy summer camp search app helps you quickly sort through thousands of sessions to find what you are looking for. Some of the search options are very simple: cost, gender, age range, location. Others might be less obvious. What is the difference between an academic camp and a STEM camp? How does before and after care usually work? What will my child learn at dance camp this summer?
We understand that all the options can be a bit bewildering, especially for new parents with first-time campers, or families with special needs. Here is an overview of the different types of summer camps and what they mean for your kids and your family.
Summer Camps for Every Schedule
Just for the Day, or Sleep-away? Day Camps vs. Overnight Camps
To figure out the right camp parents first need to determine whether they want their children to live at home during the camp’s duration or stay overnight on camp premises. Sleep-away camps place a special emphasis on the outdoors usually.
Morning, Afternoon & Evening Day Camps for Every Schedule
Day camps take place at varying times of day, usually with multiple sessions to choose from throughout the day. Some camps run all day. Many shorter camps run 2-3 sessions per day with different start/end times in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Camps are usually listed under the time of day that they begin. It all depends on the timetable of the camp in question. Blueprint4Summer’s search app makes finding day camps to fit your schedule easier with simple checkbox selections, custom date range, and more filters to refine your search.
Summer Camps for Every Interest
Academic Camps Help Kids Excel at School
Some camps may aim to bolster your child’s reading, writing, math, science, and critical thinking skills so that they can get a leg up in school. These camps can also help struggling students catch up with their peers as well. Either way your child’s self esteem can get a boost significantly at one of these camps.
Art Camps Help Kids Embrace Creativity & Express Themselves
Art camps help campers sharpen their painting, pottery, carving, illustration, and even their animation skills. Kids learn new techniques as they joyfully create one-of-a-kind objects to show off to the world. Even if your child has no current interest in art they will still get to expand their horizons, and gain new insights into the world form what they learn at art camp.
Cooking Camps Teach Life Skills & Independence
Shave some time out of your daily routine and have your child cook for you. Kids can learn various cooking techniques, and even foods they never knew about before. Even if they have no intention of ever becoming a professional chef, they still will appreciate the skills they learn later on in life when they have to cook for themselves.
Dance Camps Get Kids Moving to the Beat
Dance camps offer an opportunity to get your kid(s) off the couch, and up on their feet. Campers can gain exposure to a wide variety of dance types: contemporary, ballet, jazz, Tap, Hip-hop, and ballroom. Keep in mind that many camps only specialize in one kind of dance so pick the style that your child shows the most interest in.
Drama camps teach kids about storytelling, teamwork, and thinking on their feet. Campers learn the ways of the stage, engage in fun activities like improv and character development, and get comfortable being silly and confident in front of an audience. Many programs conclude with a stage performance for family and friends.
Music Camps Teach Creativity & Collaboration
Music camps can help campers hone their vocal abilities and learn a variety of instruments. Your child might come out of the camp with a lifelong passion. These camps can especially benefit your child if they show any interest in joining a choir or band in high school.
Nature Camps Help Keep Kids Grounded
If you want your child to get away from their electronics and experience the outdoors in a supervised and safe setting, a nature camp might suit your needs perfectly. At these camps your child goes out in nature for a few hours a day or weeks at a time. Campers often get to go kayaking, hiking, and swimming, learn to build fires, and much more.
Sports Camps Help Kids Build Skills & Sportsmanship
Your child can help hone their inner athlete at a sports camp. Some specialize in a particular sport, even many niche sports such as fencing. Others expose your kid(s) to a variety of different sports so that they can figure out which they might want to focus on in the future. There are programs for team sports like youth basketball, baseball, hockey, soccer, football, and volleyball, as well as individual sports like track and field, tennis, swimming, golf, rock climbing and more.
STEM Camps Prepare Kids for the Future
Send your child to a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) camp to help them channel their intellectual abilities. Campers learn often learn the basics of computer programming, and engineering which can lead to exciting career opportunities down the line.
Summer Camps for Your Family’s Needs
Special Needs Summer Camps Nurture Skills & Confidence
Special needs children who require extra accommodations can also enrich themselves at a wide array of camps designed just for them. They gain confidence in the newfound skills they learn while at camp.
Gifted Summer Camps Help High Achievers Soar
Gifted kids can unlock their potential at certain camps that would otherwise go untapped. Campers get to learn more about themselves, and what areas of academia they wish to pursue. These camps might even help campers prep for college through tours of college campuses.
Before/After Care Supports Busy Families & Working Parents
Camps often have expended hours for parents that have to work. These hours are known as before/after care. Camps usually charge a small extra fee for this service. Organizations offer many scholarships for camp. As camps can get quite expensive. Your kid(s) may qualify depending on a variety of factors.
Scholarships Help All Families Benefit from Summer Camps
As much as parents want to give their kids every opportunity and experience available, sometimes the money just isn’t there. Blueprint4Summer and our camp program partners are passionate about making summer camp accessible to all kids regardless of income, race, gender, and ability. Summer fun is for everyone! One way we help more kids go to camp is by providing scholarships and financial assistance for children’s summer programs. There are more than 2,700 sessions that offer scholarships listed in our app right now. Take a look and explore your options. The opportunities within your reach will amaze you!
Stretch Your Boundaries
It’s important to choose the camp that best suits your kid(s), but remember summer camp is about new experiences. Camps are the perfect way to stretch your child’s boundaries (or yours) and try something different. Take your rough-and-tumble athletic kids on a journey of creativity by enrolling them in an art camp. Help your STEM-obsessed child break her screen addiction and reconnect with the earth by signing her up for an overnight nature camp.
Ask for Assistance
Summer camps are our passion at Blueprint4Summer and we are here to support you as you search for programs. Let us know if you need help using our search app to find sessions for your child. Each camp program also has its own support resources and amazing staff members that would be delighted to answer your questions and get you more specific information about their programs. Don’t hesitate to reach out to them for assistance. We are all here for you and your kids.