Summer is here and most schools in India are closing in a couple of weeks. My inbox is full of details of multiple summer camps being held with a timeframe of 15 days to 30 days starting end April to end May. This is the time when summer is at its peak in India and most of the camps are usually indoors.

A lot of discussion has been going around about whether it’s good or not to send a child to a summer camp.

  • The need for unstructured play
  • When will the kids enjoy them without having to follow a schedule
  • We never had summer camps, but we enjoyed ourselves so much during the vacations
  • My God the camps charge so much money and do nothing, aren’t these a waste of time
  • Oh! they are just an extension of the school

are some of the arguments I have heard against summer camps.

Photo Credit : mumbai.saintclassified.in

Photo Credit : mumbai.saintclassified.in

I must confess here, I do send the brat to summer camps every year. They are held in her daycare for a period of 15 days, and I have felt she enjoys herself thoroughly. Usually held for 3 hours in the morning, they are given breakfast and made to do different activities like painting, colouring, sticking, cutting, dancing, singing, listening to songs, seeing educational videos and even giving a dance program at the end of the camp to the parents. All in all, it seems to be a fun activity.

Also, there are dedicated summer camps in Bombay where children learn robotics, or arts or film making, or cooking, or acting and stuff. Usually these are a tad bit expensive and I don’t know if they do any good to children, but I know there is a large demand for these camps since they have been increasing by leaps and bounds over the years.

Unstructured play

I know it’s very important for a child’s development, but going to a camp for a couple of hours in a day is not a bad idea at all.

Not following a schedule

Ah! well, for a working parent like me with no support system, R has to anyway get up early in the morning, to go to daycare. Plus I am of the firm opinion that children should follow some discipline even if it’s a holiday. A child who gets up at 11 in the morning one day and then at 7 in the morning the next day, will find it difficult to settle into a routine.

We never had summer camps but enjoyed ourselves so much during vacations

I agree, my summer vacations were spent in Calcutta with a set of 8 cousins who made life so much fun, and even in the hometown, friends were always around to have fun. Unfortunately, in my daughter’s case, the cousins live too far away and with both the spouse and I working, it gets difficult for us to take extended leave. The kid is too young to send her away alone plus even the cousins are working, which means they aren’t there to take care of the children. Also, in and around our vicinity, there aren’t too many kids, which means, no friends except for those in the daycare to play with. So why not send her to a summer camp where there are loads of other kids for her to have fun with.

Expensive camps

Yes the summer camps are expensive, and that’s the only detrimental factor as far as I am concerned about these camps

Aren’t they are waste of time

Nope. R has learnt a lot in the past 3 years she has been going to the camps. Dancing, singing, painting, writing, and stuff…

They are an extension of school

And school isn’t too bad no?

Ah well, these may seem like silly reasons from a parent who doesn’t really have a choice but to send her daughter to the summer camp. But all in all, I think they do have a positive impact on the overall development of a child.

Responses

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  1. SriEA

    Hmmm..even i am thinking of sending my daughter to a summer camp if close to home..haven’t yet decided…the cost factor is high as you mentioned..

    1. R's Mom

      Yep cost is the only thing which dissuades me from sending her..but it gives her so much joy, that I usually do send her every year 🙂