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Kate Van Cleef
July 3, 2019

5 Creative After School and Summer Camp Ideas

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5 Creative After School and Summer Camp Ideas

You have decided it’s time to expand your child care business, and you want to offer an after school program or summer camp that will stand out from the rest. Here are some ideas to get you started!

Think Local
Every town has its own unique attractions - natural, historical, or cultural. Do you have an unusual local event, like a rubber duck race or punkin’ chunkin’? In the week leading up to the festival, theme your after school activities or your summer camp to build excitement toward the event! If possible, arrange a field trip to the event for all your participating families. You can use the same idea for a local natural attraction. Do tulips bloom each year in your town? Spend a week celebrating the flowers and wrap up with a field trip to see the real thing. 

Hop in Your Time Machine
The past is full of periods to explore, from Ancient Egypt to the Wild West! Spend a week exploring a time period from all angles - literature, the arts, food, science and technology, costuming, and everyday life.

Let’s Go to the Movies
Theme each week around a particular classic family film. For example, entertain tweens by showing The Goonies on Monday and spending the rest of the week making maps, hunting for treasure, and painting one-of-a-kind Hawaiian shirts. 

Time to Tinker
Take crafting camp to the next level by introducing your kiddos to maker culture. Bring in local makers and artisans to share their crafts. Find people who are doing truly unique things - junk sculptors, cosplayers, puppet builders...the possibilities are endless! Have the professional demonstrate what they do, then help the children make their own masterpiece.

Try, Try Again
Host a week-long Try-a-Thon! Dedicate each day to trying something different. How about Wellness Wednesday? Set up stations where kids can try calisthenics, aerobics, or a new sport. Or what about Food Friday? You can offer everything from unusual fruits to chocolate-covered crickets.

The possibilities within each one of these broad themes are endless. Begin with things that excite you, and your passion and enthusiasm will be contagious.