FIRST TIME CAMPER

There is a wide range of feelings that both parents and first-time campers experience as their first day approaches. While we are all excited, there is sometimes anxiety about facing a new experience. Here are some suggestions for first-time campers to help parent and child make the most of the transition. 

 

A few things you can do to help your camper: 
  • Visit Camp! Join us at one of our Open House Nights to explore our camp offerings and meet with our camp director to address any questions you have about the upcoming season or to help you with any inquries. Our grounds will be open only at Camp Y-Koda to walk the property, purchase camp gear from the camp store, view the cabins, facilities and so much more!
  • Pack for Camp Together! This allows your camper to know where everything is and begin to get a sense of being responsible and capable. Your camper may want to try living out of their backpack for during the day time for a couple of days to practice organizing their own stuff in a new way. Resist packing for your camper. A list of packed items taped to their backpack also can be used to remind campers of what has been packed. We recommend writing your campers first and last name on their belongings. View a packing list here for Day Camp!
  • Use positive messages about camp such as, "You are going to have such a great time!" or "What a great opportunity to meet new friends!"
  • Avoid promises to come pick them up if it doesn't go well. Instead, reaffirm your camper that they will enjoy themselves and make the most of the experience. 
  • Help your child understand what to expect by reviewing the camp website and Parent Handbook which has additional information and tips. 
  • Avoid basing success at camp on the presence of one other person. Often in an effort to encourage campers to go to camp, parents assure a child that a particular friend will make the experience successful. This can become a problem if plans change and the friend is not at camp. This can also make a child feel overly dependent on a friend, which can put strain on the relationship with others & their counselor. Focus on the entire experience and opportunity to meet others. 
  • Separation can (sometimes) be hard on the family and parents, too. Be aware that children read your feelings and may misinterpret what you need from them. Be honest with them and stay positive. Ask questions of the staff prior to or on their first day about things that you are concerned with. Be careful not to undermine your camper's attempts at independence with your own concerns about separation. Seek reassurance, support and counsel from other adults but beware of people who question your choice to send your child to camp. Giving your child an opportunity for independence and an active summer in a beautiful natural setting is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child. Don't let others undermine YOUR confidence. 

Communication During Camp

Parents who have concerns or questions about their camper may call the camp director. If they are not available, a message may be left via voice mail and can be emailed to krautmann@sheboygancountyymca.org. If they are not available, a message may be left and every effort will be made to return the calls within 24 hours. 

 

Since the camp staff members are out on the property working with campers rather than sitting in an office, there is almost always a delay in receiving phone messages and returning calls. If you need to speak to someone immediately, contact the camp director or assistant director, or as the person answering the phone to contact the director by radio. 

Please do not leave messages for counselors since they have difficulty getting to the phone, which may delay the response. The directors will speak with the counselor to get specific information and can set up a phone call from a counselor to a parent where necessary. 

 

Main Phone Line: (920) 467 - 6882

This line is answered by our office staff Monday - Friday - 7:15am - 5:30pm 

 

After 5:30pm and on weekends you will hear a recording to leave a message with one of our team members. We will make every effort to your call within 24 hours on a business day Monday -  Friday.