Tulsa Summer Camps : Best for Your Kids

Michael: Hello. My name is Michael Stairs. I’m the Summer Camp Director at Camp Loughridge. I’m here today to talk a little bit about Tulsa summer camps, specifically about Camp Loughridge. Camp Loughridge is a Christian Summer Day Camp located just five minutes west of Tulsa Hills. You can imagine the possibilities of being so close, a great camp facility just a few minutes away in West Tulsa making it very convenient for you to drop your kids off in the morning, and pick them up in the afternoon.

I looked at the calendar this morning. We’re in the middle of February, and we’ve got a quick three and a half months until camp begins. My heart started beating a little bit faster just realizing that like other Tulsa summer camps, Camp Loughridge is on the downhill slope now to summer time. I’m sure as much as I’m feeling, the speed up, I’m sure that there are parents out there that are feeling the very same way about what they’re going to do with their kids this summer.

I want to speak specifically to you and ask you what are you going to do with your kids this summer. Last week, we talked about how you’re going to invest in your family this summer. I think as parents, we all want the best for our kids, and we’re looking for those kinds of experiences that will enhance and help out our kids down the road. We look for the right school. We look for the right activities, extra-curricular stuff, sports, music. We look for the right lessons.

We want our kids to be disciplined. We want them to be self-controlled. We want them to be good citizens. We want them to have good social skills. We want them to be hungry educationally. We want them to be able to set examples for those kids that are younger than they are. These are all important things, and I think that as parents we want to do what’s the very best for our kids. I want to talk to you this morning as we talk about Tulsa summer camps, and Camp Loughridge specifically, about an interesting quote that I ran across.

This is specifically to those parents who want to make sure that they’re doing the best educationally for their kids, that they’re creating events, creating situations that are going to put their child in the best possible situation educationally. Putting them in the best schools, maybe hiring tutors, all of those kinds of things. There’s a quote, this is from a guy, his name is Charles Elliot. He was a president of Harvard University back in the late 1800’s, early 1900’s.

He had a very interesting thing to say. I want to read this quote to you. He said, “I have a conviction that a few weeks spent in a well-organized summer camp may be of more value educationally than a whole year of formal school work.” Let me read that again. I want that to kind of sink in. He says, “I have a conviction that a few weeks spent in a well-organized summer camp may be of more value educationally than a whole year of formal school work.”

Now, I would love to sit down and talk with Dr. Elliot a little bit and ask him what was the reasoning behind him making that statement. What did he see as the value of a summer camp experience? Why would he say that a summer camp experience could be of more value than a full year of formal school work. I’m just going to have to make some guesses. I think number one, he would say that because of the individual attention.

A kid who comes to camp is going to be in a tribe with maybe seven, eight, ten other kids, and they’re going to have one or two high school and college age counselors that are going to be with them all day long. They’re going to get a lot of individual attention. These kids that come to camp, they’re going to have not just supervision and not just attention, but actual engaged leadership. We believe in every sense of the word that counselors at Camp Loughridge are mentors that are leading by example.

We believe very strongly in the tenant that Christ is better caught that taught. In other words, it’s easier for a child to pick up the nature of Christ by watching the way their counselors and their other staff act than they are listening to a perfect three-point devotion on the life of Christ. Christ is better caught than taught. The first reason I believe that camp is better, maybe better than a full year of school work, is just the individual attention and mentorship that those children will receive while their at camp.

The second thing, school by definition goes all year. It goes from mid-August all the way through mid-May, maybe even the end of May, or maybe even later than that. It’s a long kind of a slug through the year. Because it goes on so long, there’s an ebb and flow and there’s a pacing that goes along with it. It’s like running a marathon. You don’t charge out of the gate and expect to win the race. There’s a pace that goes with school. It’s much more slow in delivering.

Whereas camp, camp is a week long. Camp has a much higher impact, right? We’re doing things with much more intensity. Now, that’s not to say that we don’t take time, and we don’t spend time in reflection and even meditation, and taking time to kind of mull over some of the things we’re learning. At the same time, camp is just five days long. Each camp session goes Monday through Friday, and so it’s a high impact type of experience.

I believe that that’s another reason why Dr. Elliot would’ve said that camp is possibly better than a whole year of formal school work.

The other thing is I have talked before on this podcast about the X factor. There’s something very interesting that comes together when there’s an interesting mix. It’s like a recipe. When you put certain things in the bowl, certain things come out and certain magic happens I believe. I believe that you take inquisitive kids, put them in a group with other inquisitive kids, you throw in engaged mentors, and you put this combination in a beautiful outdoor setting, and something magic happens.

That is the perfect way. It’s a perfect combination to open a child’s heart for learning. Tulsa Summer Camps Now, I don’t want to be too critical of the school because I know that they are doing great work, but there’s something even perhaps stifling about sitting in a desk or at a table in rows in a room surrounded by walls, and even though there may be wonderful media capability in that room, it cannot compete with the outdoor setting where anything can happen.

We are thrilled this year to be able to work in cooperation with the outdoor classroom program at Camp Loughridge to provide even some outdoor education along with our program for the kids that will be attending Camp Loughridge. What a great place to study, what a great place to learn is this outdoor natural classroom where we don’t just learn facts, but we learn how things work together.

One of the things I’m excited about, I was talking with Sheryl who oversees out outdoor classroom program, doing a workshop for kids called Nature’s Detectives, where the kids will happen upon a scene of maybe something that has happened and they’re going to have to like CSI deduct what has happened at the scene.

Maybe it’s a carcass or maybe it’s some acorns that have been cracked, and a squirrel has had a meal. Who knows what it might be? But they’re going to be able to take a look at all these different clues and deduct what happened. What a great learning experience, something that could never be duplicated in a school, in a classroom Tulsa Summer Camps.

For these reasons, I believe that Charles Elliot, who was president of Harvard no less believed that a few weeks at summer camp could be of more value educationally than a whole year of formal school work.

We’re excited about this summer coming up at Camp Loughridge. We’re excited about camp. We’re excited about kids coming to camp, and excited about families being involved investing in the lives of their kids this summer. I hope you can be a part. We are five minutes west of Tulsa Hills Shopping Center on West 71st Street up on top of the hill. We have 180 acres of God’s own classroom, beautiful spot, three lakes. We have kids participate in swimming and arts and crafts and archery, canoeing as well as many other opportunities for kids to be evolved to help that you’ll be able to take advantage this summer. We’ve been talking about Tulsa Summer Camps. This is Michael Stairs from Camp Loughridge. I hope you’ll be a part. Thank you.

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