Summer Camp: How To Pack

Written by julienewman76
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More than just a place to spend summer vacations, summer camp is a fun place where a child can learn to be more independent, create new friendships and develop new skills. Summer camps are also credited for fostering a sense of teamwork in children and teaching children how to appreciate nature and outdoor sports — especially in a generation where fun usually means playing computer games or surfing the internet.

Summer camps usually last for two to four weeks, depending on the camp activities. From choosing the perfect camp to packing your child’s gear for camp, parents have a major role in ensuring a successful and memorable camp experience for their children. And as in most things in life, preparation is key — especially in packing your child’s gear. Here are some useful tips and pointers to remember before sending your kids to camp.

First step would be to create a packing list. Summer camps usually send a recommended list of packing essentials. Make sure that you include all the things on this official list in your kids’ gear. They are there for a reason.

Pack early. Start shopping for camp essentials as soon as you get the recommended list of things to bring from the camp. Procrastination won’t do you any good. Packing several days (or even weeks, if possible) will help you avoid stressful last minute shopping trips. It will also save you the trouble of scrambling to find his/her favorite shirt and jammies at the last minute.

Don’t forget to pack appropriate medications. While most camps have clinics and first aid stations, it is still very important to pack your child’s prescribed medications. It is also best practice to include the phone/contact number of the physician in case the prescription is lost and needs to be refilled by the camp staff.

Pack an extra pillow case. Despite reminders from camp staff that the facility has sufficient pillow cases, it might be best to pack an extra pillow case. Most camp kids complain that pillows and cases provided by the camp are notoriously grungy. Also, it is more hygienic for your kids to use their own pillow cases, at the very least.

Pack an appropriate number of clothes, keeping in mind the duration of the camp. In general, laundry is done once a week in camps. Make sure that your child will have enough shirts, jeans, underwear, pajamas and other clothing essentials even if laundry is done only once every week. There is no hard and fast rule for number of clothes to pack as the need and quantity would largely depend on the camp’s location but to be on the safe side, this list might be helpful in planning your kids’ wardrobe:

8-10 t-shirts
5-6 pairs of shorts
3-4 sweatshirts
2-3 pairs of sweat pants
2 pairs of jeans
1 warm jacket
1 raincoat
3-5 swimsuits
12 pairs of underpants
12 pairs of socks
2-3 pairs of pajamas
1 sunhat
1 bathrobe
A list of miscellaneous stuff can include:
Flashlight and batteries
Bug repellent
Laundry Bag
Rain gear
Baseball hat
Shower Pail
Stationary and postage stamps

Other quick reminders when packing:
o Mark everything — each piece of clothing, books, toys — with your child’s name
o Include a list of emergency phone numbers and email addresses
o Disposable flashlights will always come in handy, regardless of camp location
o Pack several pre-addressed postcards with postage so as to encourage your child to write

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