The Right Camp for Your Kids: Find It

Pick the right camp for your child or children with expert tips from mom of 6, Julie Cole.


Google the phrase “summer camp” and you’ll get almost 30 million hits. So how do you find the right one? Here are some helpful tips and key points to consider when selecting a camp.

Key things to consider when selecting a camp:

Start early.
The earlier you start your research, the better. The best camps fill up fast!

Take your search online. 
Get online and be as specific in your search terms as you can, (narrow down location, type of camp, co-ed or not, etc.).

Think outside the box.
A good way to source camps is to think of where the preferred activities are normally held. Your kid loves to act? Check out local theatre companies. Into science? Try a university engineering department. Lurk on camp chat boards (many of the larger camp websites have them) or better still, post a question or three.

Day camp or residential?
Or maybe a mixture of both? Some outdoor day camps end their week with a sleepover and this is a great way to introduce your child to being away overnight.

Which type of camp?
Consider choosing camps based on your child’s interests (sports, science, arts…) or by their needs: is their year crammed with homework and after-school activities? If so, perhaps a traditional, fun, outdoor camp would be just what they need. Are they comfortable meeting lots of new people or would a smaller, more controlled environment be better?

What’s your budget?
Costs range from thousands of dollars for international camps to a few bucks for an afternoon at a local day camp. Keep in mind; price is not necessarily an indication of quality. For that, you should consider:

  • Counsellor-to-kid ratio
  • Qualifications and experience of camp staff
  • Depth and quality of programs

There are countless things that will sway your choice when it comes to selecting a camp, but ultimately, the only wrong choice you can make is one which doesn’t consider the uniqueness of your child!


Mabel’s Labels’ Co-creator Julie Cole is a mother of six and a company spokesperson. After her eldest son was diagnosed with autism, she shelved her legal career to monitor his therapy and launch a business that would strike a better work/life balance. In addition to Mabel’s Labels, Julie is a renowned blogger, “Mama of Many,” and is well known among North American mom entrepreneurs. She is also an in-demand speaker, with engagements from university business classes to TV and radio shows, including a regular spot as parenting contributor on CH Morning Live. In addition to interviews and articles in major print publications, as a syndicated blogger, her writing has appeared in Chicken Soup For the Soul – Power Moms and numerous websites.

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