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Are you planning to utilize an online summer camp this year? These tips will help you to make sure you get the most out of summer camp on the computer (and so will your kids).
This post is sponsored by iD Tech.
Well, here we are. What may be the weirdest summer of all time. In most parts of the country (definitely) here in California……there are few traditional summer camps. Online summer camp is what we've got. It may not be exactly what we expected, but virtual summer camp can be a ton of fun and is a great way for our kids to have some socialization from the safety of our homes.
Last week Lydia participated in a REALLY cool online summer camp with ID Tech. Her coding camp was led by a female instructor, and it ended up being an all girls group (you guys know I'm all about that girl power especially when it comes to STEM so I was extra excited on the first day when we found that out). Lydia was really excited to find out that her teacher for the week was a computer science major and loved learning to code (after the FIRST day she even showed Robbie and I how to create a simple game using basically coding).
So, you're thinking about trying out a virtual camp. These tips? Will help the week run smoothly and be the most fun for your child (plus, the truth is that a great online camp experience will help YOU get your work done while your kids are occupied).
Snacks and Water: This one may be obvious, but be sure you figure out a plan for snacks and water. Lydia's computer coding camp is two hours per day, but they do a break halfway through for about 10-15 minutes. So I always have a snack and fresh drink ready for that time.
Use the Bathroom Before Camp: Yet another may seem obvious but, sometimes kids don't want to “miss” anything during camp. So be sure to remind your camper to use the restroom before a session, and to let them know that they can always leave to take care of their needs and return during camp!
Set Up a Clean Workspace with All Materials Ready: Whatever workplace you choose (Lydia has even done camp days out by our pool) try to be sure it's free of distractions and that any materials needed are available. For the coding camp she's doing? She just needs a comfortable spot to sit and a fully charged computer.
Consider Using Headphones: Sitting in a communal space? Consider having your child use headphones. I actually like listening in on Lydia's classes, so she doesn't use them. But I do use Airpods myself (turned down fairly low). So I can listen to music or a podcast and still hear if she needs anything.
Practice Using the Platform (ie Zoom): Make sure that your child is familiar with whatever platform is being used to deliver the online summer camp. For Lydia, it's Zoom and she's VERY familiar with it. But be sure your child knows how to mute or unmute themselves, to communicate with their teacher or camp leader, and to log out at the end.
How to Ask for Help or Support: As silly as it may sound, sometimes kids are nervous to ask a new adult for help. So be sure that you review that is it OK to ask for help and support, especially when learning a new skill.
Pick a High Interest Activity: Picking a high interest activity is KEY. Lydia? Was really excited to try iD Tech's coding camp (she did the Scratch Game Design camp for ages 7-9) and absolutely loved it.
A bit more about iD Tech: This amazing option for online summer camp has classes for ages 7-19 and multiple levels available. From Minecraft designing to Roblox programs to weeklong camps on starting a Youtube Channel, animation classes, and even 3d Game development for older kids……they truly have something to fit every interest. They maintain a ratio of 5 kids to an instructor so it's super personalized and I was really impressed by the amount of time Lydia's instructor took to be sure the girls understood how to use the program.
If you're staying at home this summer, iD Tech is an amazing option for online summer camp!