Activity Planning for Junior Campers (age 6 - age 8)
Most camps have a set-programming schedule to help decide how campers will spend the majority of their time at camp. However, some of the games and activities between scheduled programming might require a bit of creativity- especially if you need to keep younger campers entertained and moving. Here are some tips and ideas for how to handle programming for junior campers.
- Choosing themes- playing on imagination. At this age kids still have a lot of room in their imagination so don’t be afraid to bring in characters, costumes, and out-of-the-box themes to your activity planning. Suspend your own disbelief, and work to create new amazing adventures for your campers.
- Inclusion basics- everyone plays. This is a great age to reinforce to kids that everyone should have the same opportunity to participate in whatever the activity. It helps to teach kids the importance of taking turns, sharing, and even working to accept each other’s differences.
- Working on a basic skill, rather than an entire sport. Give them the opportunity to practice passing, or shooting a ball, rather than trying to get them to grasp all the rules involved in learning a whole sport. A good way to incorporate these skills might be something like a relay race.
- Respect- taking turns, sharing, and playing by the rules. This is a great age to start introducing games with a few rules that all the players have to follow in order to be respectful of one another. Reinforcing good socialization habits is always a good idea with younger campers.
- Exploration- fueling their curiosity. Children are amazingly curious about the world around them and camp is a new and interesting place. Remember that this experience is also a wonderful learning experience for younger campers and make sure they have the opportunity to ask questions and explore.
- Minimal equipment- only the basics to play. At this age you shouldn’t worry too much about activities that rely heavily on equipment. The basics of play can be reinforced using only a few materials, and instead using your own creativity and allowing children to interact with each other during the games and activities.
- Minimum rules- easily understood games and activities. Try not to overload your games with rules. At this age kids just want to have fun and if there are too many rules then the activity can be hard to follow and children will loose interest you only need a few rules to keep everyone safe and happy.
- Groups and Activity- include everyone in the activity and keep them all moving. Make sure everyone is given equal opportunity to participate or your younger campers will loose interest.
Examples of appropriate activities for this age group might include:
- Games and activities not involving emphasis on fine motor skill (not things like archery, high ropes, or complicated artistic endeavors)
- Games involving only a few rules like tag, soccer, and simple crafts.
- Large group games where everyone gets to play equally like capture the flag, obstacle courses, and relay races.
- Keeping them moving and active- younger children have a lot of energy and getting them out and playing all day will make bedtime a lot easier.
Everyone knows the value of getting away from routines and technology to spend time in nature. Around the world, kids feel a different kind of energy take hold as their camp busses roll off highways through camp gates each summer.
Beginning in 1946, Camp Bil-O-Wood Has been run by the Ludwig Family for generations.
Keats Camps has been serving youth and families for over 85 years as a part of the Canadian Baptists of Western Canada. Thriving during the summer months, our property comes alive with over a thousand campers & staff and all of their visiting parents & friends.
Manitoba Pioneer Camp
Founded in 1940, Manitoba Pioneer Camp has been operating ever since as a life-changing summer camp for children and youth. It is part of a network of nine Inter-Varsity Camps across Canada.