What can children learn at summer camp that they can’t learn at school?
School is great for learning so many skills, but it cannot teach everything. When school ends is when parents feel the pressure to help their children acquire a different set of skill.
Tennis summer camp is something many parents do not prioritize, but it can offer its own set of coping life skills. In fact, many children that have difficulties learning in school frequently excel in tennis camp by improving on both their physical and emotional skills.
And those acquired skills from camp could eventually help them when they go back to school. Let’s examine some of those!
Freedom of choice
Going to school is often not something children choose because they do not control where they live (their parents do). School curriculum is also something that they cannot choose, apart from maybe certain group projects and homework assignments (their teachers do).
Making decisions on your own, however, is a crucial life lesson. At tennis camp children get to choose and experiment all the time while being supported by their coaches. During every match, every game, and every point you get to make choices and then deal with the consequences of those choices.
In most schools, teachers prioritize book learning. Kids learn valuable life lessons in many areas (e.g. math, language, science), that could potentially help them get into higher level educational institutions.
Tennis summer camps, on the other hand, offer more of an interactive learning. Children end up in situations where they meet new people all the time or try things they haven’t done before, test themselves, solve problems, analyze results … and they have to figure out how to do this all by themselves! With this increase independence, children grow in many different ways, so camp ends up providing them with skills the schools want them to have but are unable to teach.
Emotional intelligence and social interactions
It is tough learning these two in school as the priority normally lies on homework and academics. And yet, those are really crucial for both school and professional success.
Engaging in social interaction with kids from diverse backgrounds and making friends (networking), working as a team, acquiring a sense of confidence, leadership, ability to follow directions, having self-awareness – those are all skills that children learn by that increased independence, by learning to reply on other adults than their parents, receiving peer feedback, as well as by developing competency and sense of “industry” connection.
Last but not least – physical activity is crucial to healthy life and lifestyle. At school, you mostly sit on a desk, play is seen as a distraction, and staying indoors is the norm (with the exception of gym time maybe).
Tennis summer camp, however, offers children ability to learn how to improve their physical strength and skills through their favorite sport. Being outdoors is the norm, lots of movement and play is expected and encouraged. With play, joy of learning naturally emerge.
Unlike school, camp is learning for pleasure and through play, which is really the best way to acquire skills and knowledge, don’t you think? How do you feel about importance of summer camp?