I had the honor of hosting the final day of camp. The bar was set very high by the other parents that hosted. The children did everything from performing a puppet show, to swimming in the pool, to going on a nature hike and completing their own field guide. I was trying to come up a new idea that would work even if the poor weather that was in the forecast decided to come our way.
My sister is a photographer and she had shared a photo shoot idea with me a few months prior. She thought it would be cool to have the children dress up as Super Heros complete with capes. With that thought fresh in my mind, I decided the theme for our day. (Yes, I stole her idea, but I knew she wouldn’t mind.) We would be Super Heros! I went through my large collection of vintage fabrics and pulled the most interesting and kid-friendly patterns I could find. Then I ran them through the washer and dryer. Our first activity would be to select a cape from the fabrics.
As the campers arrived, I was pleasantly surprised when one child showed up in his Batman costume. Because I hadn’t shared my idea with any of the parents or the campers, I couldn’t believe that this day, of all days, he would choose to wear his costume. I took this as a good sign. To add to the excitement, we also had a birthday girl at camp, so we gave her a birthday crown to wear for the day.
Once all the campers were present, they were told that today they would be Super Heros and I instructed them to choose a fabric for their capes. They grabbed their capes and we cut them to fit. Then they each had to secretly select a Super Hero name and a Super Hero Power. Kari (another camp mom) and I wrote the names and powers on index cards. We sat around the diningroom table as each child was given a chance to pick a card. After choosing the card, they had to read it out loud and then guess the Super Hero’s identity from the description.
Here are some of the Super Heros we had at our camp:
This is Double Cape. His super power is creating tornados.
This is Skylar. She can fly!
This is Super Fighter. He has to look tough because he fights bad guys.
After we were introduced to all Super Heros, they were sent on their missions (complete the games). They played: Aim it or Shame It (bean bag toss), X-ray vision game (finding the object under 3 cups) , and Power Ball Toss. (tossing balloons into a basket) Each child decorated their own Super Hero Game Folder and scored points for the successful completion of each mission. At the end, they all received a prize.
The best prize for me was watching all the campers enjoy each other’s company in a worry-free environment. All of the adults remarked on how much these children enjoy being with each other. For my daughter, it was her first real camp experience and I am very appreciative of the fact that we were able to make that happen for her.
Before it all came to an end, I asked each camper to tell us what they liked best. Here are their responses:
“Swimming in the pool.”
“Trying the tire swing.”
“I got to do a camp with kids with food allergies!”
“Being able to spend time with everyone and being a junior counselor.”
“I didn’t want to leave my friend, Samantha.”
“Walking down to the stream.”
“ We got to spend time with people that have similar things going on in their lives.”
“It was fun!”
“Doing the hike and swimming in the pool.”
I don’t need any fancy research or official post-camp surveys to know that this was a “good thing” for our children in every way. I’m already planning activities for next summer!