As I am sure many parents can relate, social media and cell phones are making me crazy. Have you noticed how all the kids (and adults) are constantly scrolling, texting and watching things on their devices? Not only is this bad for their mental development, we are raising the next group of hunchback adults.
As I was strolling thru camps earlier this summer, I started to notice how happy all the campers looked. They were so happy talking to their friends, playing games and just being outside. Imagine that – all of these smiles and no Snapchat or Instagram to capture it. How amazing!! You know what else was amazing? They all made eye contact because their heads weren’t hunched down starting at a screen. Call me old-fashioned, but I truly believe that kids are happier at camp because it is now the only place where they can disconnect from the world, but more importantly, they are making real life connections. Laughing with their friends, making memories and feeling good about themselves.
My love for camp is stronger than ever. Can anything really replace face to face fun? How about a time for your child to feel good about themselves and doing things they can truly enjoy, not because they want to post it. Let’s take this a step further. Now I know I may get a lot of backlash from my nearest and dearest but maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if camp directors eased up on the camp pictures. I can hear the loud protests. Hear me out – I recently visited a camp that did not post pictures. When I asked the director why not, he said, “kids act differently when they don’t have to be on”. Hmm – that’s true. He then continued, “This is their journey, not their parents”. Even I had to sheepishly admit he was right.
This camp also had the highest percentage of former campers coming back multiple years as counselors. A coincidence? Maybe, but it is something to think about.