Camp is more than just a place to play: Camp Builds Skills for Life!
Camp is Where You Go For It!
According to The 100 Simple Secrets of Successful People, the key predictor of success isn’t intelligence, salary, or even ability. It’s something you already have, and it’s gotten you to where you are today, intrinsic motivation. Our motivation is the powerful force inside each of us that drives us, makes us tick, and pushes us forward. When we’re willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen, we inspire others and change our relationships, circumstances and communities for the better.
But with all the distractions, stress, and anxiety of our day-to-day life, many of us lack motivation, or are in a constant struggle to maintain it. Adults usually rekindle their motivation on retreats, or when spending time with close friends. For children and young people, Camp is often the place where they first feel ready to go for it.
Camp Has the Secret to Success!
Why is going to Camp a key place to help children discover their own motivation?
In a revealing op-ed for Time Magazine, Eric Barker explains the “formula” for a motivation (and it isn’t a chart full of gold stars and demerits). To be motivated, kids need an environment that makes them feel something, unites them with others around a common goal, and gives them a series of small, attainable victories so they are more likely to keep pressing on. This is Camp!
There’s no place like camp when it comes to feeling motivating emotions like joy, happiness, and excitement. During a game of capture the flag or while building a fort, I love seeing our campers’ eyes light up and hearing their laughter as they run through the park together. I wish I could bottle up their energy! Children at play don’t need to be made to keep having fun, so the atmosphere of camp is ideal for fostering the intrinsic motivation needed for later success at school and in the workforce.
The group unity needed to keep people motivated is a big part of our camp activities, too. We do all of our activities in small groups, and stay with those groups for the entire session. Watching friendship blossom from this familiarity is one of the most rewarding things I witness throughout the summer. Group games, competitions, and relays strengthen those bonds (since they encourage collaboration, sharing and partnership). And if there are struggles or upsets during a game or activity, our campers encourage each other to keep going for it and not give up.
While there are challenges, camp is full of lots of successes and victories. Winning a game, catching a tadpole, learning how to shoot an arrow: so much of what we do at camp brings with it a feeling of satisfaction and a desire to do more, learn more, and experience more. The more I see Campers learning little things along the way (crafts, games, and new hobbies), the more confident they feel when taking on bigger obstacles like hiking, exploring the woods, or building a campfire.
Leadership Academy believes that motivation drives persistence, optimism, and overall success. Our innovative programs are designed to show campers they can take charge, explore, and keep moving forward to adventure.