Whether you're at an all boys camp or an all girls camp, a camp that lasts a week or a camp that lasts seven weeks, a camp that's a day camp or a camp that's an overnight camp, a camp that has under a hundred kids or a camp that has over a hundred kids, a camp that's dedicated to one sport or a camp that has endless sports; you all have a similar experience when it comes to camp counseling.
Camp counseling is not for everyone; it takes patience, initiative, leadership skills, creativity, adaptability, and confidence. Some counselors acquire these skills during camp and some already have full knowledge of them.
Camp counseling is not for everyone, but it's an experience that can't be beaten by anything else.
1. There's a calm before the storm.
Some things each camp counselor knows to be true is, there's a calm before the storm, and that's during orientation week. Enjoy it because it's the last time that you'll spend all your time with just the other counselors.
2. There's always a camper that will drive you crazy.
They will ask you a million questions just to get your attention, they will kick dirt on you just to annoy you and they will never leave you alone. But it's worth getting pestered by them because, if you can tolerate it, in the end they'll tell you that you're one of their favorite counselors and are going to be very upset on leaving day.
3. There's a time when you'll hit a rut.
This is because you're so exhausted from burning both ends of your string. For those that were counselors at a seven-week camp, that will most likely be around the fifth week, and that's when your intensity level will drop even the slightest bit. Don't worry, the campers will be sure to point out that you don't have a smile on your face and that you look tired.
4. There's a 99 percent chance that you're going to get sick during camp.
It might just be a cold that puts you on the back burner for a few hours or it might be strep that puts you in the infirmary for a week. With all the germy kids and the lack of fruit or vegetables in your diet, you're bound to get sick. Try and stay healthy because missing a few days of camp is like missing a month in real time.
5. There's no privacy on camp grounds.
Well, there are doors on the bathroom stalls, but when it comes to knowing things about what's going on around camp, just be aware that everyone else knows everything as well. So if there's something you don't want anyone knowing, keep it to yourself or else it'll spread like wildfire.
6. There's going to be tears shed when you have to leave at the end.
Saying goodbye to the campers is one thing, but saying goodbye to the other counselors is another thing. They most likely live on opposite sides of the country or maybe even the world. You never know when you are going to see them again, especially all in the same place. And you've created these relationships and memories that will last a lifetime.
The main thing that every camp counselor knows to be true is that explaining your experience to those around you is nearly impossible. And those who thoroughly enjoyed camp will say that it's an entirely different world there and that they would give anything to be back.