Posted by Blair | 12.28.2018 | Sea Turtle Camp, Sea Turtle Camp News

A Device Free Day in the Life

Sending your child to a residential camp for the first time can be tough for campers and sometimes more so for parents. And with no phone use?! In this modern age we are so used to being able to call, text, or snapchat anyone in seconds. Checking in on your children multiple times a day seems normal…we all need to know that they are being safe and cared for! Your fears and concerns are common and understandable. But with that said, most camps, including ours, have a strict cell-phone ban – and it’s for a good reason!

Here’s why:

  1. You can’t hold a phone and a sea turtle at the same time! (or a horse conch like in the picture to the right)
  2. You probably need it more than they do. Let them be kids. Let them unwind and unplug
  3. Studies (and our experiences) have proven more calls and texts home increases homesickness – they become more focused on what they think they are missing at home rather than all the fun they have right in front of them

What they will be experiencing instead:

  • Surfing or boogie boarding in the big blue!
  • SUP and/or kayaking
  • Earning community service hours
  • Dissections – yep!
  • Feeding sea turtles
  • Water quality testing
  • Catching species in the salt marsh
  • Thursday night Luau!
  • Fun team building activities
  • Aquarium behind the scenes tour

Benefits of a device-free environment – They will…

  • Improve social skills and gain face-to-face confidence
  • Work on leadership and communication skills
  • Focus on the now – often times cell phones make us too distracted from the outside world
  • Gain independence
  • Build character and self-respect
  • Make new friends from all around the world!

Keeping up with your camper:

  • They can give you a call when they first arrive and meet with a counselor at the airport
  • We post many pictures everyday on Facebook so you can see all the fun they are experiencing
  • For the longer sessions – campers get a call home halfway through the session if they wish
  • For the travel programs – you will receive emails through the week updating you on the fun activities they have done and to come!
  • You will always be able to contact them in an emergency situation
  • You are welcome to call our administrative office if you have any questions or concerns during their stay

Other tid-bits to ease your mind:

  • We have highly trained staff who know how to deal with homesickness and are all CPR/First Aid certified
  • Year after year, camper after camper, exclaim how surprised they were they didn’t want or need their phone during camp – they were having too much fun! They often tell us how glad they were to have that time to just be a kid and hang out with friends “the old fashioned way”
  • Campers are allowed to bring their own cameras to document some of their experiences!

It’s important to remind yourself the reason you signed them up for camp. You want them to have fun and learn something new! You want them to make new friends and have the experience of a lifetime. You are fortunate to have the ability to this for your children. Help them take advantage of this opportunity by letting them get outside and interact with other kids and adults without a phone blocking their view.