When you begin to make decisions about camp, the best advice is to include your son in the process right from the start. At the same time as you are choosing a camp that matches your values, it is important that the activities and the program match your son’s interests. Check out the website together; look at the photos on Facebook and the videos on Youtube. Read stories about camp experiences in the archived newsletters. The more information that you share, the better informed and more confident you will both be. If it is helpful to you to speak with a family that sends their son to Nominingue, this can be arranged. In the same way, it might be helpful for your son to meet someone who has been to Camp Nominingue as a camper.
As spring arrives, we hold parent-son information evenings. These evenings are a great way to learn about the program, to meet some of the people who will be working with you son and to ask lots of questions. Don’t shy away from speaking about homesickness with your son. It is perfectly normal for him to miss home at some point during his camp experience. He needs to be given some helpful actions that he can take when he begins to miss home, and feel empowered that he will be able to deal with the situation when it occurs. If he has little experience being away from home, give your son some practice with family or friends or school, so that camp is not the first away-from-home experience.
As camp approaches, track the last few weeks leading up to departure; get your son involved in the packing process; have him help label his belongings; pre-address and pre-stamp envelopes to make it easy for him to write to you. As well, make sure that you have given as much information as possible in the medical and confidential forms to provide the staff with the guidance it may need to provide your son with the best camp experience possible.
Studies over the last few years have demonstrated that camp does achieve what camp professionals have said for many years: camp improves self-esteem, physical, social and thinking skills; it develops a child’s independence and his sense of adventure; and it is fun! If you do prepare your son for camp, you improve the likelihood that he will have an incredible experience.
In the same way that it is important that your son be prepared for camp, it is essential that you be prepared for the separation from your child. The less stress that you feel about camp, the better it will be for your child. And whatever you do, avoid giving your son an out at the last minute by promising that you will pick him up if he is homesick. Such a promise will put you in a no-win position, if he calls on you to fulfill this promise. Camp is and should be a learning experience for both of you.
Whether your son is already enrolled or you are still considering summer alternatives, we invite you to come out to one of our parent-son information evenings. Each evening begins at 7:15 PM and we aim to finish by 8:30 PM.
Montreal– Lower Canada College (dining room), 4090 Royal Ave., NDG
Wednesday February 22, 2017
Tuesday March 28, 2017
Thursday April 20, 2017
Tuesday May 16, 2017
Ottawa – Holiday Inn Ottawa East, 1199 Joseph Cyr Street, Ottawa, ON
Tuesday February 21, 2017
Thursday March 30, 2017
Wednesday April 19, 2017
Wednesday May 17, 2017
We are also open to scheduling home visits if anyone is interested in organizing a presentation in their home for a small group of parents and their sons. This can be arranged with the office.