It seems like a long time ago that I was last leading a camp, so I’d like to write about my experience of running outdoor camps.
When I think about what I miss about camps, it is not the activities, my mind always turns to the students.
Seeing a student ride a bike for the first time or the smiles of students overcoming a steep section.
The concentrating frown of a student rock climbing, with the encouraging voices of peers below.
The cautious student trying not to dirty their brand-new white sneakers, for them to be running through thick layers of mud a short time later.
The boisterous student, loud and full of energy, learns to encourage others giving them the confidence to lead the group.
The students who constantly ask their teachers for their phone, by week’s end must be reminded to collect them.
The student who has never cooked, cooks a camp meal for 20 people.
The student who does not want to come to camp, by week’s end cannot wait to come back.
These are just some of the memories that bring me back to work on school camps. It is not just the fact that I can enjoy working in the outdoors, it is the little things that students show and gain throughout their camp.
So when we return, yes camps will be a little different but the aims will be the same.
To get kids outdoors, for them to have fun and for them to grow.
By Chris Beggs