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Lifeguard & General Counsellor

Duration

4 Summers

Name

Sophie

Location

Pennsylvania

Camp Type

Jewish

General Counselor

Lifeguard & General Counsellor

Duration

4 Summers

Location

Pennsylvania

Name

Sophie

Camp Type

Jewish

Why did you apply to work at camp? 

I applied to work at camp as when I was at school one of my teachers always referred back to her camp experience during all her lessons and always recommended it to us. During sixth form we had students that would talk about their camp experience and gave us a good insight about camp which really motivated me to go and as soon as I was 18 I got my application in for camp! 

Applying for camp...

The application for camp was really easy! All you have to do is talk about your skills and explain the reasons why you want to work at camp. You will then be notified when you can go onto the next stage of the application process and picking your interviewer near you etc. It doesn't take that long to do but I always worked on it one part at a time to get it completed! 

Favourite thing about America...

One of my favourite things about America is the travelling, there is so much to see throughout so many states such as cities, national parks and landmarks! There's always so much to do across America that you can never fit it all in so that when you return for each summer there is always new places to see! 

Best part about working on camp... 

The best part about working on camp for me would be interacting and coaching the kids at the variety of different activities across camp! These kids really look up to you at camp so being able to teach them new skills or improve their skills is really rewarding for you. 

Top Tip... 

A top tip would be to be open minded, willing to try new things and to just put yourself out there! Camp will change your life and without a doubt you will return for another summer! 

Sophie's Typical Day

7:45am

Reveille

This is your alarm clock at camp, the REALLY loud tune that plays through massive speakers across camp! Time to jump out of bed, wake all your girls up and get them to brush their teeth etc.

8:10am

Line up

All lower camp girls meet together around the camp fire. Division and group leaders will explain the plan for the day, if certain bunks are going somewhere different for lunch, what activities you are able to go to during rest hour etc. Next, we join the upper camp girls, gather around the flag pole for the flag raising. We all sing the national anthem whilst raising the flag so we’re ready to start the day! If it’s someone’s birthday or a bunk’s done well in a competition they get to raise the flag. This is a big privilege so the girls get very excited when picked! Once any special announcements are made we all head to the dining hall for breakfast!

8:20am

Breakfast

This is one of the busiest times of the day, after line up you all run into breakfast and find your bunk’s table! There are four counsellors to my bunk of kids and at meal times we had a ‘buggy’ system to get the girls their food, this meant that you weren’t always on duty to sort their food out and were able to sit down yourself and eat your meal rather than rush it standing up! Once we had all finished breakfast and cleared up then went back to the bunk to start clean up!

8:50am

Clean Up/Inspection

It’s time to get your bunk looking perfect! Our bunk had a jobs chart so there was a job for each kid, we would assist anyone who needed help with this! They were pretty easy; clean the bathroom, sweep, dust, get the towels from the girls (easiest one of course)! The girls were required to make their beds and organise their 1 million pillows! They also had to get ready for activities, putting on the appropriate right clothing and applying sun screen which never goes down well! Finally the division and group leaders would come around for inspection.

9:30am

Athletics

This is the first activity of the day which might be baseball, tennis, soccer, lacrosse, basketball or volleyball! It’s all done on rotation so it’s never the same every day! The activities are done by division so you will always be going to each activity as a big group then split into teams. You are required to get involved and help the specialists making sure everyone is participating.

10:30am

Electives

This is where the girls get to choose what activity they want to go to! This could be any activity area on camp such as the rock wall, practising their dance for the upcoming competition, boating, or arts and crafts!

11:30am

Waterfront

Time to take your kids either for instructional swim or take them down to the lake for some water skiing or to play on the slides and water trampolines (this rotated in the afternoon)! At all times as a general counsellor you need to be keeping an eye on the kids, encouraging them or even get in the pool to help them.

12:30pm

Lunch

By this time everyone is starving so the rush into lunch begins! The girls run to our bunk table and wait nicely for us counsellors to bring the food over. At each meal time you had to check if any of your kids have allergies and if they are able to eat the food. If they couldn’t, you needed to request a different option for them.

1:00pm

Rest Hour

It’s time to chill in the bunk with the girls and they usually want to play jacks, paint nails, do each other’s hair or put on a little beauty salon! Some of the girls like to write letters home about what they’ve been doing lately! Sometimes in rest hour the girls might want to go and get some extra practise in sports if there was a soccer or tennis tournaments.

2:00pm

Athletics

Similar to the morning activity the kids would do another activity but different. It could be between soccer, tennis, baseball, basketball or volleyball. We had to make sure that all the kids were ready for their activity e.g ad the right clothing and taking the right equipment to the activities.

3:00pm

Snack & Mail

This is such a fun time of the day because the ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ theme tune is blasted through big speakers and every person has to complete the dance to get a snack! We will then go back to the bunk and organise the mail so the girls can read or open any presents that they may have received.

3:15pm

Waterfront and Electives

If the girls didn’t have instructional swim in the morning then they had it now or would get to go to the boating hill, play on the slides or go water skiing! After the waterfront, its time for their elected activity, some would stay or go to another activity such as dance, the rock wall or arts and crafts.

5:10pm

Shower hour/Dinner prep

This is when you need to get 10 kids in and out the shower and ready for dinner in 50 minutes! You need to make sure that they are all ready for dinner and tidied their areas before you lea the bunk. If they were ready early the girls could reply to their letters they had received earlier on in the day and get them ready to send.

6:00pm

Line up/Lowering the flag

This is a chance for the whole of girls side to get together and the head counsellors will explain what happened that day and what everyone would be doing for their evening activity. This is also when they lower the flag and sing the national anthem before we all go in for dinner!

6:15pm

Dinner

At dinner times, same as other meal times, the lower camp go into the dining hall first and each bunk will go to their specific table and for the counsellors who are on ‘buggy’ duty they would be required to go and get the food for the kids.

7:15pm

Canteen

Canteen is time for the girls to have free play so they are able to mix with the boy’s side on the basketball courts and just have some free time with them. They also get a canteen card where they can exchange for sweets each day. Every Monday for my girls was phone call night so during canteen time they would be called down to the main hall and had a phone call with their parents to give them time to catch up!

7:45pm

Evening Activity

These were different each day and varied from nights in the movie theatre, to salons with the older girls or whole camp activities such as the Tyler Hill Mario Kart where the whole camp got together and cheered on all their head counsellors, division leaders and friendship coaches! This was good because it brought the whole camp together.

9:00pm

Bed!

After evening activity and a very long day it was time to get all of the girls ready for bed. The youngest girls usually went to sleep first, so us counsellors had to make sure we got them all in to the bunks and resting in bed as soon as possible.

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