Keeping in Touch with Friends from Camp

by Amanda Formaro

Summer camp was fun, but it's time to head back to school, get back to regular routines, and for kids to enjoy your camp memories until next year. Your kids made some great friends and they swore not to lose touch. So how can you teach them to keep those friendships strong for a whole year before they see them again?

In this day and age of digital communication, it's easy to stay in touch with friends if you are a teenager. Most teens have a cell phone, Facebook account and email address. Surely they've exchanged phone numbers, so texting during down time, provided your plan allows for it, is a great way to stay in touch with distant friends. Remind your teens that texting during class or while driving is a definite no-no and to stay within plan minutes/messages.

Facebook and other social media outlets are very popular means for staying in touch for friends and family all over the country and the world. The beauty of communicating via electronic means is that you can carry on a conversation bits and pieces at a time, when it's convenient for you! Be sure you're following proper safety guidelines with your kids when using these social media outlets, such as keeping their profiles private, only befriending people they actually know in real life, and not participating in open chat rooms.

Social media is great for your teenager, but what about the younger set; those not old enough for such technology? This is a great time to teach kids about communication skills, letter writing and creating handmade postcards.

For a child, there's something fun and magical about receiving an actual piece of mail addressed to them. The mailbox is usually reserved just for the adults in the household. So to receive a piece of personal mail is surely treat, like opening a birthday present! Be sure to keep some fun kid friendly stationary handy so that when a letter arrives, your child can sit down and write a reply immediately, while the excitement is still fresh. Help them address the envelope, decorate it with stickers, and add a stamp. You can certainly pop the letter into your mailbox and put the flag up, but for some added fun, take them to the post office to "officially" mail their letter!

Did you know that the post office accepts homemade postcards, not just the kind you buy at stores and gift shops? It's true! As long as you stay within their size guidelines, you are limited only to your imagination. Your postcards should be a minimum of 3.5" x 5", and a maximum size of 4.5" x 6" to stay within legal postal service guidelines. Use card stock as it provides a sturdy surface for your postcard. Decorate one side with stickers, markers, or even use foam stamps and paint. On the other side, draw a vertical line down the center of the card. Have your child write their message on the left, then put the return address and mailing address on the right side. Be sure to leave room in the upper right hand corner for the postage stamp! You can get detailed instructions for making postcards here.

Depending on your child's age and your telephone plan, setting up a phone call once a month or so is a nice way for the kids to catch up. A lot has happened since camp, so surely there will be plenty to talk about! Whether it's their new teachers, the new friends they made in school, or a birthday that has passed, sometimes just good old-fashioned phone call is a great way to stay in touch.

While some kids aren't quite ready for cell phones and Facebook, there is a fun way to video chat online called Skype. You will need a computer that is equipped with a webcam in order to video chat, but Skype does operate like a speakerphone as well and video is not a requirement. Skype is a free download and does not charge you for using its service. This is a great alternative to the telephone if you don't have unlimited long distance.

No matter how your kids stay in touch, it's important to try and hold on to those friendships that were created over the summer. Summer camp creates not only lasting memories, but lasting relationships as well.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by KidsCamps Editor published on January 6, 2018 11:00 AM.

Unique Winter Craft For Kids was the previous entry in this blog.

5 Ways to Save on Summer Camp: "Camperships" & Discounts is the next entry in this blog.

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