Unplugging the Kids at Sleepaway Camp

by ParentCo. June 07, 2016

Leaving for sleepaway camp is, for many children, a major step toward independence. Today, when cellphones keep parents and children in nearly constant contact, the fact that most camps have phone-free policies makes breaking away even more of a challenge.

“Camp-age kids, by even 10 or 11, are used to texting and being in frequent contact with their parents,” said Christopher Thurber, a clinical psychologist who focuses on youth development and summer camp. “How we communicate has changed the nature of attachment, and it complicates the separation that kids and parents go through,” he said.

According to a Pew Research Center study, teenagers send and receive an average of 67 texts per day. Kids are on their phones in school, in restaurants, on vacations and even in bed. For many, sleepaway camp remains one of the last oases, largely untouched by technology.

To prepare to detach for camp, Dr. Thurber recommends families try one tech-free day per week over the month before camp, with no recreational screen time. “It’s good to practice some withholding from real-time digital communication and learn to not reflexively reach for cellphones,” he said.

Source: Phone-Sick at Camp - The New York Times



ParentCo.

Author



Also in Conversations

little boy playing with toy car
How to Praise your Kids: A Process Praise Primer

by Jessica Williams

To put it simply, process praise is praise that emphasizes the work, effort, or actions of the child. Praise contributes to our kids' development.

Continue Reading

kid in glasses reading book
12 Books that Reflect the Diversity of the World Around Us

by ParentCo.

I want my children to know that many kids look and live differently than they do. These wonderful, powerful, and fun books can help.

Continue Reading

woman holding baby and laughing
Fighting for my Autistic Son to Stay in his General Education Classroom

by Megan Burgess

Why is my autistic son in a general education classroom? I could argue it's for inclusion, but the truth is, I fought to keep him there because it felt right.

Continue Reading