Sure, summer camp keeps your kid out of your hair for a few months -- but it also can be a fun, enriching adventure for him. "Day camps foster independence, self-discovery, confidence, resilience and more," says Jill Tipograph, a summer camp expert and the founder and director of EverythingSummer.com. Still, there's more to getting ready than stocking up on sunblock and stamping his name inside his underwear. If everything you know about camp you learned from Hello Muddah Hello Faddah, read on for expert get-ready tips that'll ensure a fun and successful experience.
Familiarize Yourself with the Camp in Advance Many camps offer an orientation or open house, which is a great time for kids to meet the counselors and other campers. If this isn't an option, visiting the camp setting -- even if it's totally vacant -- builds a comforting familiarity, says Tipograph. "Anxiety is often the result of a lack of knowledge," she explains. "Everything you can do to acquaint your child with the space, schedule, people and activities will build confidence and ease apprehension." At the very least, you can comb the camp website and registration materials together for photos of faces or places your child might recognize and to get a feel for the camp environment.