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Day in the life: Private camp

24.03.20

7:45am: Reveille and Wake-Up

8:00am: All camp line-up at flagpole

Reveille in announced over the tannoy's at 7:45 in the morning, and each morning my camp plays a different song that is followed by an announcement from our director, surrounding the weather for the day. For many counsellors this announcement signals the start of convincing your campers to get up and dressed for line-up (something that gets harder as the weeks progress)

8:10am: Breakfast in dining hall

The time you eat depends for us, on the age group; the younger kids eat at the first sitting and the older ones eat right after that. My camp offers a range of breakfast options that include toast/bagels, cereal, fruit, yogurts, tea/coffee and different hot options each day. 

8:45am: Clean up at bunks

9:20am: Inspection of bunks

9:30am: 1st activity period

10:30am: 2nd activity period

11:30am: 3rd activity period - 1st elective

Activity periods differ each week for the kids, every Monday a new timetable is given to the group leaders to allow each day to be new and fun, through variation and not repetition. Futhermore, campers are given the chance to pick an elective each week, which means they get to choose for themselves - this gives them the opportunity to try new activities, or spend extra time doing what they enjoy most. 

12:30pm: Wash-up for lunch

12:35pm:  Lunch

1:05pm: Rest time

2:05pm: 4th activity period

3:15pm: 5th activity period

4:15pm: Afternoon snack break

4:35pm: 6th activity period - 2nd elective/swimming

5:35pm: Wash up for dinner

Each day, the counsellors get one period off, which is decided in the mornings by the team leaders. Counsellors can spend their period off, as they wish - phoning home, relaxing in staff cabin, nap, etc. 

5:45pm: Dinner in dining hall

6:15pm: Free play

7:15pm: Shower hour - recall to cabins

Shower hour is the time at camp that everyone needs, you will have been running from activity to activity all day, you may have even been in the lake, or the pool, so by this time of night it's a welcome relax to let the kids and counsellors shower after dinner.

8:15pm: Call to evening activity

Evening activity involves the whole camp each night and can be anything from talent shows, disco's, pool parties, theatre performances and much more! It's a chance to see all the campers that you don't spend the day with, as well as the other counsellors.

9:30pm: Evening activity concludes, canteen/snack begins and curfew started. 

The younger campers go to bed whilst the older kids get the chance to spend a little down time around certain areas of camp. A group of counsellors are located around camp each night 'on duty', while the remainder get the night off until 12pm, when they have to be signed back in. This is done on a rotational basis.


And that's the day in the life of Camp Lakota, a private overnight camp. Not every private camp will follow the same schedule, but it's likely to be similiarily run. Private camps typically have the campers there for the whole summer, if not for 'sessions' that can be 2-3 weeks long, so it's important the kids have choice in their activities, but also have a schedule that offers routine, and variation in the sense of day-to-day activities.