A Tribute to My Friend Brad Schwartz

In the early hours of May 14 my friend, Brad Schwartz, of the Banner Day Camp family, died peacefully after a long battle with cancer. He left behind two children, his wife and extended family, as well as a sad and somewhat stunned extended camp family.
 
I had known Brad since the early 1990’s when I […]

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We Adults Talk Too Much

Can you ever remember a time when you had done something wrong as a child and an adult went on and on in their lecture to you even though you got the “message” after the first two minutes? I think everyone has a story like that. There are three key points to be made about […]

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Modern Day Friends, Same Old Brain

I recently read where Facebook© has just reached a record 600 million profiles on their social networking platform. This certainly represents the largest “stage” of human interconnectedness ever created by mankind. The last 100 million seem to have been created in the last few months.
Social networking programs have certainly allowed people to stay […]

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I hate the teacher I’ve had to become: Camp as Education

Camp people are getting excited about the idea of looking at a strong camp experience as educational and not just recreational or social. At a time when so many children in public schools are essentially being taught how to get good test scores, it is becoming increasingly apparent that there are big gaps in what […]

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Cell Phone Deception – and other tales from the summer (January-February, 2007)

Dear Bob, Our coed resident camp is in a fairly remote area, but last year “progress” found us and we now have cell service in camp. Even before this blessing we discovered campers had been smuggling cell phones into camp to use on trips out of camp. (We have a clearly stated “no-cell-phones-in-camp” policy). How […]

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Over Praising Children

It is now clear the parents, in an effort to “inoculate” their children against all the uncertain- ties and challenges of today’s demanding and competitive world, over praise their children. the attempt on the part of parents is to bolster their kids’ self-esteem, thus preparing them for the tough life they may face in the […]

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Smart Counselors (July-August, 2006)

Maybe you’ve seen her on TV. She’s the no-nonsense, matronly woman with that “don’t-even-think-about messing with me” look on her face. She is the person desperate parents call when their children become unmanageable. She’s “Nanny 911” and she knows a thing or two about working with children that any savvy camp counselor […]

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Adventures with Camp Parents (May-June, 2006)

Very often while I am visiting a camp in June or July, I not only hear about challenging camper behavior, but perplexing parent behavior as well. I decided to share one of these episodes as a way of illustrating techniques for working more effectively with camper parents. I have changed a few minor […]

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Scenes from Camp (March-April, 2006)

June and July are travel months for me. Twenty days each month I can be found in a camp somewhere in the United States listening to the tales of counselors dealing valiantly with challenging camper behavior. I have chosen to share a couple of episodes from last summer with the hope that you, […]

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Camper-Counselor Contact—After Camp (July-August, 2005)

Dear Bob, We have a veteran staff member who is excellent with children. He is a school guidance counselor known for his good work with students. He doesn’t seem to have a strong peer group apart from the youngsters he spends time with, and he is constantly creating opportunities to befriend boys through the ski […]

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