1. Go on your camp’s website & social media. In fact, don’t just go on the website, but totally exhaust it. Read absolutely everything you can about the place where you’re going to be spending your summer, even the stuff that doesn’t really seem to apply to you… all information about your camp is good information to have! Then go check out all their social media accounts too – find out if they’ve got a Youtube channel and watch all the videos they’ve ever made!
2. Join your camp’s staff group on Facebook. OK, not every camp will have one, but I’m pretty sure most do – it’s a great way to give info to everyone at once. Use the group to find people who might be traveling to camp on the same day as you and ask as many questions as you like… use the returning staff as a resource – they can probably answer every single one of your questions!
3. Get used to being active. Camp is going to be a whirlwind of activity and action. You won’t be sleeping as well as you do at home and so you need to be prepared so all those kids don’t wear you out. Make sure you’re prepared by getting in shape and eating right before you go. I’m a huge fan of the Rip60 program, you can do it from anywhere, it’s for all levels of fitness and its even portable enough to bring with you to camp so you can work off all those s’mores!
4. Find other people who have worked at summer camp and ask them a bajillion questions. You can do this either through your camp’s Facebook group, or perhaps you know someone who has been to camp before. Some of the agencies even have forums where you can ask as many questions as you like! But honestly, one of the best ways to put your mind at ease is to get answers to all the little questions you have running around your mind.
5. Do a practice pack to make sure you’ve got absolutely everything you need. I’m one of those weird people that actually likes packing – it always makes me really excited for my travels! If this is your first time going to camp it might help your nerves if you do a little practice pack so that you can see what fit and what doesn’t and maybe adjust your packing list slightly and then when it comes to packing for real, you’ll be done in no time!
6. Have some ideas for lessons and games before you get there (either in your head or write it all down in a notebook you’ve bought especially for camp). One thing that will make you feel more relaxed about the whole thing is if you feel prepared. And getting some lesson plan ideas down on paper is a great start.
7. Breathe. It’s all going to fine. In fact it’s going to be more than fine. It’s going to be AMAZING. I promise.