As an advisor with Tips on Trips and Camps, I pride myself on knowing more than the average parent about summer opportunities for children. Yet, I still struggle with which direction to go for my middle school boy. He thinks he has out grown the traditional overnight camp, and frankly would rather sit in front of the xbox all summer playing with his remote friends. One thing I do know– that is not going to happen! I don’t want a couch potato who occasionally whines about being bored two weeks into summer. As children reach 7th and 8th grade, their options really open up: domestic or international travel with some wilderness adventure or culture thrown in; academic enrichment or study skills to prepare them for the rigors of high school; language immersion if they have completed some language in middle school and want to really learn outside of a classroom environment; community service to open their eyes to the world around them. Even I struggle with which direction to go. My older son did sailing in the caribbean while learning to SCUBA dive. He loved that! However, each child is different, and sea sickness rules it out this time around. The possibilities are endless and the time is now to decide… I must get busy and apply my knowledge and expertise in order to help my own child find the right summer program.