Why Adult and Tot programs are valuable for your child

During the summer months, parents often look for a change in routine and new activities for children to enjoy. With young children who are 2-4 years of age, a range of activities must constantly be planned to keep the child engaged. This can be difficult for parents who want to spend time with their children and enjoy activities together, as sometimes the activity prep and clean-up can be a lot of extra work. Thankfully, there are programs available that allow parents and tots to enjoy time together without the parent having to prepare or come up with ideas. Day camps are offered for children in this age range that can include parents and allow the parent and child to enjoy activities together on a daily basis.

Classes Together

Day camp programs have been set up for children ages 2 to 4 that provide access to classes that children of this age range might not normally have. For example, crafts are an activity that can be fun for kids but something that this age range needs help with. At day camp, your child will receive assistance from counselors or even from you when attending. Parents love going to such classes as they provide a way to have fun with the child without all the mess or fuss of preparation. Most parents want to take part in such activities with their child but just do not have the time or the energy to set up craft stations. By attending day camp, your child can have access to such activities and you can join in when time permits to spend quality time with your child.

Self-Confidence

Young children between the ages of 2 to 4 can become clingy to the parent and have little self-confidence. With day camp, a child in this age range will have the ability to learn self-reliance as well as self-confidence. To take part in fun activities such as dance class, swimming, crafts and more, over time, your child will look forward to camp as they begin to experience things on their own.

Making Friends

Even children in this young age group need to make friends. Starting early with interactions with others helps the child to learn how to make friends, how to share and get along with others. Children need this interaction so that they can build quality relationship skills that will carry on to their teenage years as well as into adulthood.

This is also a good opportunity for parents to make new friends and meet other parents with similar aged children. It creates an opportunity to arrange new play dates over the years to come.

At Zodiac Day Camp, we offer quality day camp programming for children in the 2 to 4 year range. We offer age-appropriate indoor and outdoor activities that are taught by our professional staff. Children can enjoy special themed or program days along with snacks when taking part in half day programs. Contact our office today to find out more about our day camp options.

How Day Camps without Screens Improve Preteen Skills

How Day Camps Can Be A Positive Influence in Youth Development

Day camps for kids are an optimal way to provide entertainment as well as a learning opportunity for your children. Day camps offer programming that stimulates the mind and body, keeping children active year round. For preteens, day camps can be an opportunity to put down mobile devices or move away from the computer screen and focus on real interaction. Preteens often want to be online and away from the world, but too much screen time can be detrimental to the child’s development. Learn how day camps without screens can provide a boost to personal skills of preteens.

Listening Skills

To begin, the preteen will boost their listening skills. Have you ever tried to talk to your child while they were on their mobile device or laptop? It’s like talking to a brick wall! The child is so focused on the screen that they do not hear you or only half listen to what you have to say. By taking away the screens and focusing on interaction with others, your preteen will develop better listening skills.

Working Well with Others

During day camp, many activities take place. From team sports to art and music, your child has the ability to learn new skills while working with others. It is important for young people to learn how to work well with others. During day camp for kids, your child will be able to learn how to work with their teammates during sports or complete a project in art class. By not having access to a computer screen, your child can focus on building relationships with others and learning how to build on teamwork skills.

Communication

A preteen is not the best communicator, especially if they are focused on a computer screen. Children need to learn how to communicate with others, such as acknowledging when a question is asked or simply saying hello. By allowing your child to attend day camp, they will be in a group with other kids their age as well as interacting with camp counselors. Communication skills are built upon during activities or events. As your child will not be focused on a computer screen, they will be better able to learn how to communicate with others.

Finding New Interests

It can be difficult to pull your preteen away from the computer screen but attending day camp will help them find new interests. Taking part in quality activities can help your child find a new passion. Perhaps your child shows an interest in art or a particular sport. Take notice of what your child enjoys at camp and consider lessons on the subject or additional classes. Giving your child an alternative to screen time can only boost additional social skills as well as life skills.

Overall, camp can be beneficial to your preteen. At Zodiac Day Camp, we offer a wealth of day camp opportunities, including leadership building, first aid, babysitting courses and more. Your preteen can learn life building skills as well as have the potential for employment once courses are complete. Contact our office today to learn more about our many preteen programs.

Summer Camp: Helping Your Child Keep Routine

Routine is important for children as expectations are in place. Children know what is to come and they can act accordingly. This is why schools have a set schedule in place. Each day, the child knows what subjects will be studied, when lunch and recess will take place as well as when it is time to go home. During the summer months, a routine is not in place and this can lead to issues with behavior as well as boredom. Children often become bored or irritable as there is no set routine in place during the summer months. Thankfully, summer camp for kids can alleviate this problem. With summer programs, kids can stay busy and enjoy a routine, having fun and learning at the same time!

Setting a Summer Routine

When summer arrives, it is important to set a routine. Have a scheduled wake up time as well as bed time in place so that children are able to rest well. Children will be ready for bed each night as well as be ready to rise each day. Create a routine for wakeup such as brushing hair and teeth along with breakfast as well as at nighttime, with bath time and a story. This will be helpful once you integrate a summer camp program as your child will already be up and ready to go.

Summer Camp Routine

To help your child create a summer camp routine, have your child prepare for the day ahead the night before. Depending on the type of camp your child is attending, they will need certain clothing or items. For example, if your child is going to attend a camp with swimming, then they would need clothing, perhaps a change of clothes plus their swimsuit and towel, goggles, etc. Have your child get into the routine of setting out their clothing and accessories the night before to prepare for the day.

Summer camp will run during specific time frames such as early morning to mid-day or all day. When signing up your child for camp, have them visit the facility beforehand to have an idea as to what they can expect. Go over their camp schedule, visiting art rooms or the lunch area, so the child can see how their new routine will be established.

At the end of the day, take time to talk about the day at camp with your child. Ask about their schedule and order of camp activities. Get to know counselors and discuss how your child is adjusting to the camp program. By staying involved and talking about camp with your child, they will continue to be excited about camp and build a new routine schedule during the summer months.

To learn more about quality summer camps for your child, contact Zodiac Day Camp. The programs offered are for children of all ages and include quality activities that motivate and are enjoyable including diverse sports, arts, and discovery activities including specialty and leadership programs. There is truly something for everyone at Zodiac!   

Summer Camp activities for Children ages 7 to 12

Kids ages 7 to 12 are full of energy. Once school has ended and summer has begun, children in this age range need something to do to keep them active and engaged. Summer programs for kids are a great way to keep your children busy, expending their pent up energy. At Zodiac Day Camp, there are many programs offered for this age group so that you can find an activity your child will enjoy. Read on to learn what programs are offered to find the right fit for your child.

Creative Kidz

This program offers a creative outlet for children ages 7 to 12. The team of counselors and professional teachers and coaches provides several outlets for creative expression where children can use their imagination in a number of ways. Hands-on skills and confidence building are just a few of the benefits of this program. Creative Kidz takes place in one-week sessions with a focus on visual arts, dance, music, yoga, drums, karaoke, fashion and culinary arts.

Explore & Discover

This program is an option for children in the 7 to 12 year old range where a world of adventure awaits. Zodiac provides several outlets for discovery and learning including a focus on nature, rocketry, science, computers, magic and more. Children will visit lab/studio areas as well as the outdoors in Cedarvale Park to explore the subjects listed above. Equipment and supplies are provided so kids simply enjoy the experience.

Focus Français

Campers who are currently enrolled in French schools or French immersion classes can benefit from the Focus Francais day camp. This camp option provides recreational activities such as sports and arts with a half day focused on the French language. The non-academic environment helps children to learn the language and integrate speaking French in a fun environment.

Mega Sports

If your child enjoys sports, then the Mega Sports program is a perfect fit. A coaching team of experts, including Jonathan Richmon, a professional coach and TDSB teacher, will be on hand to provide an exciting and stimulating environment involving indoor and outdoor sports including: soccer, handball, baseball, archery, floor hockey and more.

Zodiaction Adventures

For a well-rounded summer camp experience, consider enrolling your child in the Zodiaction Adventures program. This option is available for campers ages 7 to 12 and features aspects of every program available including Creative Kidz, Mega Sports and Explore & Discover. Campers will be given the opportunity to take part in each program which means new activities to enjoy each and every day.

Children really enjoy this option as it incorporates aspects of every camp program. Many times, a child will be enrolled in one program but show an interest in another once seeing the day camp in action. With Zodiaction Adventures, everything is enjoyed creating a well-rounded camp experience.

At Zodiac Day Camp, we provide a wealth of summer camp programs to keep your child busy and excited about learning. Contact our office today to find out more about our many program options and visit our facility to see everything we can provide. We look forward to working with you and your child for a rewarding and fun summer.

Summer Camp activities for Children ages 12 to 15

Teens ages 12 to 15 are at a delicate point in their lives. It is not uncommon for teens in this age group to feel peer pressure from friends or want to do what their friends are doing and not necessarily hanging out with younger children. For parents, it is our job to provide an outlet for entertainment as well as learning for teens so they do not wander down the wrong path or become disengaged.. An ideal option is to enroll your teen in a program that offers summer camp activities and leadership experience. Teens will be able to make new friends and have a focus on something more interesting to them and that provides new opportunities. Below are a few examples of summer camp activities for older children to stay busy and have fun.

Leadership Programs

Leadership programs are ideal for this age group as they allow the child to learn training in specific areas and begin to build skills that will be helpful in adulthood. At Zodiac, we offer Advanced Leadership Programing for teens ages 12.5 to 15.5. These programs are offered in each of our 7 one-week sessions but are best as a 7-week experience. These programs focus on training and workshop sessions where teens are trained in areas such as child development, quality programming, effective discipline and more. Teens will learn from the Leadership Coordinator and senior camp personnel with an opportunity provided to be an apprentice or participate in specialty areas or camper groups. These programs are a great way for teens to have the ability for future employment within the Zodiac summer programs.

L.E.A.D.

The L.E.A.D. Program is for campers ages 12.5 to 14.5. Teens will spend half of their day taking part in group building activities and specialties as well as daily seminars. The other half-day is spent in a placement assisting with campers where the teens can learn from existing camp counselors.

C.I.T. Program

This program is offered to teens ages 13.5 to 15.5 when the L.E.A.D. program is completed. Teens are placed in a cabin or specialty area for a full day with specific training and seminars provided with C.I.T. peers to help the teens be prepared to become staff members during the next summer schedule.

These opportunities are perfect for teens who wish to be involved in counseling positions during summer camp programs or work with kids in the future. Teens will be given the proper skills to become camp counselors and enjoy their role in leadership.

Additional Programs

Teens can also take part in other programs that are geared toward leadership skills. Aquatic leadership classes are available so that young teens can learn first aid, CPR, lifesaving and eventually become certified as a lifeguard. Babysitting courses as well as home alone courses are offered at Zodiac year-round to provide your teenager with the appropriate skills to care for others as well as themselves.

Overall, Zodiac offers several programs for teaching leadership skills to youth and teens. Talk to your teen to see what they might be interested in and enroll in classes today. Many of the Zodiac Day Camp leadership programs lead into employment opportunities, building upon skills needed for adulthood. Check out the programs today to provide your teen with a learning experience as well as a fun opportunity this summer.

8 Fun Summer Sports for Children

Outdoor Education for your Outgoing Teenager

When the summer months arrive, children are ready for a break from sitting in school and want to run around. There are many activities children can enjoy in the summer months including a multitude of sports. Sports for kids provide an outlet for energy as well as fun with friends and family. Summer camp programs offer sporting options such as archery, swimming, basketball and more to keep kids active and having fun. Check out the top eight sports that kids love during the summer months listed below.

Archery

A fun sport offered at summer camp is archery. Children will learn how to hold a bow and arrow properly, aiming to hit the center of the target. Camps offer archery to improve hand eye coordination as well as provide an alternative to standard sports games.

Soccer

Another fun sport kid’s love in the summer is soccer. This sport promotes team building skills as well as helps kids stay in shape with vigorous running. Soccer is relatively easy to pick up and summer camps offer games or tournaments on a regular basis to keep kids active.

Tennis

Tennis is a great sport to enjoy during the summer months as it keeps kids moving and competitive. Children will learn the basics of tennis at summer camp and can use the skills they learn to join a school team or continue the sport throughout the years for fun.

Baseball

The summer months signify the beginning of baseball season so naturally, summer camp will offer baseball as a sport to enjoy. Children will learn how to hit, field the ball and run the bases as they enjoy this quality game with new friends.

Basketball

Played indoors or outdoors, basketball is a quality sport that keeps kids in shape and having fun. Even young children can learn how to shoot and dribble, playing against each other in a little friendly competition on the courts once the skills are acquired.

Handball

A popular sport in Canada, handball is also a game that is commonly played during summer camp. Kids learn how to play on a team and practice passing the ball with their hands to try and throw the ball into the goal of the other team. The game takes practice and skill and is a fun way to enjoy the hot summer months.

Swimming

Because summer is so hot, swimming is often a popular sport enjoyed by children. Summer camps often provide options for swimming so kids can kick around in the water and cool off when the temperatures become too hot to bare. Swimming can be enjoyed in a relaxing manner or lessons are often offered.

Kickball

A mix between soccer of sorts and baseball, kickball is a fun game that kids like to play in the summer months. Instead of a baseball, a large soft ball is used and the batter kicks the ball as it is rolled to the plate. Run the bases just like baseball and hope you do not get tagged out as you would in dodgeball!

Overall, there are many sports for kids to enjoy during the summer months. At Zodiac Day Camp, we offer quality summer camp programs that feature sports to keep your kids busy and active this summer. Contact our office today to learn more about what we have available.

10 Fun Summer Activities for 3 Year Olds

Summer activities for kids are necessary. When you have a three-year-old, you know they need to stay active or they quickly become bored and whiny. Day camps and summer camp programs are a great way to keep your small children busy and having fun. There are many summer activities that are fun for three-year old’s that are offered at summer camps. Today’s camps are well-rounded and offer quality programs for children to stay busy and exert their pent-up energy. Check out a list of fun activities your child can enjoy below!

Culinary

What kid doesn’t love to cook? Day camp programs offer fun and interactive age-appropriate cooking classes for today’s kids so they can enjoy learning how to make their favourite foods. Enroll in a camp today that offers culinary cooking classes so your child can get to know the kitchen.

Jr. Sports

Many times, it is hard to enroll a three-year-old in a sports program. Sports teams take the game very seriously and often times, the smaller kids do not get the chance to take part in actual game play. At day camp, younger kids can take part in Jr. sports, learning how the games function and taking part in team play.

Dance

Dancing is a fun and energetic way that three-year old’s love to spend time on. Dance classes are offered at summer camp that teach various techniques as well as help the kids learn how to move to the music at their own accord.

Karaoke

Singing is a favourite pastime of small children. Parents often hear their kiddos singing out loud in their room or in the bathtub. At summer camp, kids can take part in karaoke, singing along with friends and counselors to their favourite tunes!

Outdoor Adventure

The summer months are about enjoying the great outdoors. With outdoor adventure programs, kids get to know nature and enjoy activities that take place outside. This option is a favourite among children who cannot get enough of being in nature.

Yoga

Yoga is a fun exercise that kids really enjoy taking part in and helps them to build their coordination and flexibility. Let your little one enroll in day camp today to learn the fun moves of yoga exercise.

Crafts

Kids love getting their hands dirty and the best way to do so during day camp is with craft activities. Paints, crayons, paper, pencil, and other mediums are all provided so your child can let their imagination run wild!

Swimming

Children of all ages love to swim. During the summer months, swimming is an ideal activity for your child to exercise and stay cool and not to mention, learn an important life skill.

Imagination

Sometimes kids just need a little downtime. Give them the opportunity to express themselves with pretend play. Having fun with friends and costumes can be quite enjoyable when pretending to do something exciting!

Water Fun

Besides swimming, kids also enjoy playing in the water in other ways. Running through a splashpad or using squirt guns or water balloons and creative games that your kids are sure to love!

Zodiac Day Camp offers many quality day camp and summer camp programs to keep your kids busy and active. Contact our office today to learn more about programs available to your child.

5 Life Skills Learned in a Day Camp

Summer camp for kids is a fun way to get your children involved in activities when school is not in session. Every parent knows that once summer arrives, children can easily become restless at home, claiming they have nothing to do. Summer camps in Ontario and surrounding areas help to break up the monotony of being at home and provide an outlet for fun and friendship.

Day camp is an option provided for children to give them activities to enjoy to break up the day of being at home. Day camp can take place for a few hours a few days a week or all day. Camps will offer various activities but promise to keep your child interested and involved. Not only will children be more stimulated with day camp but they will also learn life skills that are valuable as an adult. Below is a short list of life skills your child can learn while participating in camp.

Cooperation

Being cooperative is a highly valued life skill. Your child needs to learn how to cooperate with others to build successful relationships in the workplace as well as socially as an adult. With day camp, your child will take part in group activities where cooperation is needed. Children learn how to work well with others at a young age and carry on this trait as they get older.

Teamwork

Along with cooperation, teamwork is a valuable life skill learned at camp. Children learn how to work well with others to reach a common goal. Counselors stress group activities so children learn how to get along and work together to have fun as well as complete the activity successfully. Being a team player is beneficial throughout childhood and especially once one enters the workforce.

Sharing

Children may sometimes have difficulty sharing if they are not always required to share their things. By attending day camp, the children can learn how to effectively share with others. Children will see other kids sharing toys or equipment and feel the need to follow suit or may need to borrow and share materials from others. Day camp can be a great way to teach a child how to share in a natural setting.

Confidence

Building confidence within your child is key to their success as an adult. A confident child becomes a confident adult who is successful in relationships as well as their career. Children are able to build confidence in themselves at a young age while attending day camp due to goals being created and met. Counselors are encouraging and teach the child how to set a goal and achieve it. Once the goal is obtained, the child begins to build self-confidence as they have been able to reach an accomplishment.

Resiliency

Being resilient means having the ability to bounce back after a difficult situation. Children can learn resiliency by facing difficult situations such as dealing with mean children or trying to learn a new skill. Kids can learn how to be more resilient by attending summer camp and facing challenges with friends or activities.
As you can see, a child has a great deal to learn from summer camp, including life skills. Contact Zodiac Day Camp today to learn more about our options for the summer and enroll your child for the next available program.

5 Reasons why Swimming is a Great Sport for Kids ages 5 and Up

Swimming is a perfect way to cool off and relax during the summer months. Many parents enjoy watching their kids swim and have fun. But what most parents forget is that swimming is actually a sport. Swimming has long been a way for individuals to stay in shape and exercise. Kids love swimming because it is fun but the sport can also be a great way to make friends as well as remain safe in the water. Learn more about why swimming is a great sport for kid’s ages five and up below.

Safety

The main benefit of a child learning how to swim is safety. Kids who know how to swim have the ability to stay safe while in the water. Research has shown that drowning is the second leading cause of death for individuals ages 5 to 24. Your child needs to know how to swim to be able to be a strong swimmer and have experience in the water.

Physical Fitness

Swimming is a great way to get in a cardio workout while still having fun. Kids do not realize that while they are in the water, they are actually exercising. By taking time to swim on a regular basis, your child will be able to improve their flexibility and strength as well as have an increased stamina and improved posture. Childhood obesity is prevented as your child will be burning calories and staying in shape while they exercise in the water.

Less Risk of Injury

With swimming programs for kids, children will be at less risk for injury as they would be with another sport. Other sports can lead to muscle strain and bodily injury, which swimming helps to avoid. Kids who swim are able to get the exercise they need, even play with friends, while lowering the risk to injuring themselves.

Perfect for Kids with Disabilities or Medical Conditions

Children who are subject to a physical disability or medical condition may not be able to take part in sports such as baseball or basketball. With swimming, children with such conditions can enjoy the sport and the water which has lower impact on joints and can be a safe place for children to have fun.

Life-Long Learning

Once an individual learns how to swim, they have that life skill to carry on with them. Swimming skills can be used as part of team sports or simply for exercise as your child goes from teenage years to young adulthood.

At Zodiac Swim School, we offer quality summer camp programs that include swimming lessons for the benefit of your child. Help your child learn the basics of swimming by signing up for summer camp as well as providing a fun outlet for exercise during the summer months. Contact our office today to find out more about our swimming programs and how your child can become involved today!

How Summer Camp makes Children Resilient

Resiliency is a quality trait to have an adult as it can be beneficial in the workplace as well as with relationships. Being resilient means having the ability to overcome a difficult situation. As a child, young people have the ability to learn resiliency and become productive adults. One way to do this is by attending summer camp. By attending summer camp, your child will be able to learn how to handle difficult situations should they arise with other campers as well as by taking part in summer camp activities.

During summer camp, children will take part in various activities as well as meet new people. It is these activities and new relationships that will help to create resiliency within your child. By trying new things, your child will learn how to never give up and how good it feels to accomplish a goal. When meeting new people, your child may come across individuals who are difficult to get along with but help to mold their personality as well as teach them how to deal with those who are hard to handle.

Camp Activities

Let’s start with camp activities. Depending on the type of summer camp your child is attending, the activities offered will vary. Take for example a camp that offers swimming. Whether your child is a beginner or intermediate swimmer, they will be learning something new. A new skill in swimming may be difficult to learn. As your child practices and gets better at the activity, they will be practicing being resilient. The counselors of the camp will encourage your child to continue learning the skill until they achieve their goal. This builds character and self-confidence that your child will carry with them as an adult.

Dealing with Others

At camp, children will meet new people, kids their own age. For some, making friends is easy while for others the process is more challenging. Your child will face difficult situations as they get to know other campers, possibly experiencing bullies or mean children. Teach your child to be nice all the time and learn how to deal with such individuals. As your child encounters difficult children, they will learn how to be resilient in relationships which is a handy trait to have.

Summer camp teaches children a number of valuable lessons in life, from getting along well with others to never giving up and reaching their true potential. When your child is old enough to attend summer camp, consider enrolling them in a day camp or an overnight option. Give your child the ability to strike out away from home and learn valuable lessons that only camp can provide.

At Zodiac Day Camp, we provide a safe and stimulating environment for children via summer camp and day camp programs. We want to help your child to be more self-confident, make new friends and gain a sense of resiliency. Contact our office today to learn more about our many camp options, for children of all ages. We look forward to providing an outlet of fun and learning for your child.