Smarty is also happy to pair up with her best friend for a non-academic camp at a farm where kids will be taking care of the animals, help with the produce, swim, do archery, and cook with locally produced food. Initially, we wanted this to be an overnight camp as well, but the dates did not align between us and the other family, so we are going with one week day camp option for that camp. We had to hang out online and apply for this camp as soon as their site opened for registration because, apparently, totally offline camp experiences fill up in a blink of an eye in Silicon Valley.
As usual, Smarty will also be traveling to see her grandparents. We will be visiting New Jersey in mid June, and she is going with her Dad to Germany for two weeks in early July. So, overall, she will spend about 4 weeks away from home including family trips and an overnight camp.
This year, Smarty specifically asked for some time on her own - without camps or other structured "9 to 5" activities, so there are several "free" weeks in her schedule. She is old enough to stay home on her own and to go to our community pool without supervision. I am a little skeptical on how well this is going to play out as Smarty tends to spend too much of her free time browsing the web, playing games or re-reading her favorite books, so we are talking with her about setting up her own "self-camp" with specific goals and activities for the weeks when she is at home. Still, we feel that it's fair to give her some unstructured time this summer to spend as she sees fit rather than shuttle her from once camp to another.
We might still fit one more camp in August for Smarty, but so far we haven't quite decided what it will be. She is equally interested in a local and relatively inexpensive art camp or in a much more expensive machine learning camp in Stanford University. Again, we are more inclined to a non-academic summer for this summer, so it's likely to be an art camp. Still, I am grateful for such a variety of choices available and for our ability to afford them. The trick is to decide what makes sense for each individual child, and in our case we opt for less load and more freedom next summer.
Have you already given thought to your summer plans? What are your kiddos going to do?