Going to summer camp is one of childhood’s rites of passage. Camp gives kids a chance to have new experiences, gain outdoor survival skills, make new friends and delve deep into an interest that they may not have time for during the regular school year.
Summer camps may offer half-day programs for young children, and full-day or residential programs for primary school-aged kids. Some camps also offer family programs for parents and kids who want to share the camp experience together.
Whether your child wants to spend all day playing chess or can’t wait to learn how to windsurf, there’s a camp for every kid. Over the next four weeks, we’ll be highlighting 20 of our favourite summer camps for you to check out.
1. Urban Academy
Summer camps at Urban Academy are all about having fun and focusing on skills in art, puppetry, French and musical theatre. Professional instructors from around the world bring their skills and expertise in their chosen art as well as qualifications in education.
5-16 years, New Westminster. urbanacademy.ca/summercamps
2. Arts Umbrella Summer Programs
Kids can delve deep into their passion for arts and fun during Arts Umbrella’s summer programs. Whether your kids want to spend their summer days people watching in the city or perfecting their skills in sculpture, there are a wide variety of excellent programs to choose from, including classes in clay, drama, photography, media, cartooning and more.
3-19 years, Granville Island. artsumbrella.com/summer
3. North Shore Soccer Development Centre
Kids who love, love, love soccer will have a blast at soccer camp. This year-round soccer school also offers summer day camps and development programs for boys and girls. All programs strive to reinforce the fundamentals of soccer while making sure everyone has a great time.
5-14 years, North Vancouver. nssdc.net/summer_camp2011.shtml
4. Dojang Kids Camps
Kids who love doing martial arts will be right at home at the Dojang day camps. These camps combine physical activity, martial arts exercises and techniques with exciting and engaging outings and excursions which are physical, cultural and West Coast in nature.
6-14 years, 4458 West 10th Avenue Vancouver. dojang.ca/summer-kids-camp/
5. FUN Camps (Friends Uniting for Nature)
Environmentally-minded kids will have a blast at FUN Camps, an exciting hands-on and interactive award-winning summer day camp for kids and youth. Through mixed-age group activities such as scavenger hunts, fort-building in the woods and building solar powered cars, kids gain an awareness of sustainability and build leadership skills.
6-16 years, Graduate Student Centre, UBC campus. funcamps.ca
Michelle Carchrae is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom to two girls. With a serious love for Vancouver and an equally serious need to get out of the house with two young kids, Michelle searches out the best kid and parent friendly places to go. Michelle also writes about parenting at her blog, The Parent Vortex.
Be sure to download our 2011 All About Mom Guide for great tips, resources, and articles.
Michelle Carchrae is often asking those important life questions: "who moved the scissors?", "how would you do that differently next time?" and "are you finished with the glitter glue?" Homeschooling two girls, ages 6 and 3, is her full time job. The rest of the time Michelle can be found blogging at The Parent Vortex, hiking in the forest or knitting and reading simultaneously. She recently published her first ebook, The Parenting Primer: A guide to positive parenting in the first six years, and moved to Bowen Island.