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10 Activities That You Wouldn't Expect to Find at Summer Camp

If you're anything like me, when you think of summer camp activities there are a few that immediately spring to mind. Maybe outdoor education activities like climbing, hiking and camping, or waterfront roles like swimming or kayaking?

Well, I'm here to tell you that there are loads of unique activities that you may not even realise exist at camp.

Here are 10 activities that you wouldn't expect to find at summer camp.

Author: Lauren
28 Oct 14:08

At camp, we had 'Try Something New Day' where the counselors got to choose one activity at camp to try out.

This was how I got to experience some of the more unique camp activities.

So whether you're a master of one of these skills, or have always wanted to give them a go, camp is the perfect way to get stuck in.

Camp Counselor
1. Ceramics

I'm talking pottery wheels, kilns - the lot. Loads of summer camps offer ceramics as an activity in addition to arts and crafts, and trust me when I say that campers will create a wide range of objects. From Christmas tree decorations, to vases, mugs, and soap dishes, before you know it, your bunk will be filled with artistic clay creations. But the fun doesn't have to stop with the campers, why not make friends with the ceramics staff and see if you can give it a go throughout the summer?

2. Circus

"When all else fails, join the Circus."

A handful of camps have a fully dedicated circus department who teach the campers a whole range of circus skills. Throughout the summer they may hold Cirque shows where campers can showcase their skills, and if you get a chance, maybe you can learn a couple of party tricks to bring home with you. If your camp does have a circus team, they're usually eccentric and creative individuals who bring a fun vibe to camp - you'll definitely want to make friends with them.

3. Droning

A very 21st century addition to camp activities, but a camper favourite nonetheless. If your camp is bougie enough to own this kind of equipment, you'll usually find one or two really cool staff members who are in charge of droning for their summer work. Whether their role is to show campers how to fly drones, or to capture amazing shots of camp for their social media - it's safe to say you'll want to share the videos they create to show off your camp to your mates at home.

4. Languages

"Guten Tag." "Como estas." "Bonne journée." Any of these ring a bell? If you're multilingual and have a passion for speaking another language, why not share this with the kids at camp? Teaching languages at camp is a great TEFL alternative, only instead of leading classes in English abroad, you'll teach the language that you're interested in. It's a great way to gain some experience in a fun, light-hearted setting.

5. Magic

"It's a kind of magic".

I don't know about you, but I was 'amazed' to find out that teaching magic wasn't a 'trick', and is actually an activity option at most camps. Staff in this department have plenty of 'tricks up their sleeve' and the campers love mastering new skills. If there are any staff talent shows coming up, see if you can learn a thing or two from the magic department - pulling off a cool magic trick in front of a crowd is sure to win you brownie points with the campers.

6. Rocketry

Yep. You heard it correctly. Some camps offer rocketry as an activity where campers can learn about the basic theories behind rocket science. This may not sound very 'summer camp' but these sessions are made extremely fun as campers are able to conduct basic rocketry experiments. They're able to create mini rockets that blast off - what's more fun than that?

7. Skateboarding

It will probably land you status as one of the coolest counselors on camp, if you work at the skateboarding park. From how to land an ollie, to conquering half pipes, campers are in for a wild ride if they sign up for skateboarding as an activity. At a lot of camps, kids are required to bring their own skateboards and helmets, but if you're no skating pro and want to try something new, see if you can borrow a board from the staff and ask them to show you a thing or two on the board. You never know, you could become the next Tony Hawk.

8. Trapeze

"Trapeze cannot begin without a jump."

Okay so the quote may be a little cheesy, but I don't know a camp activity that is more surprising - yet also so fitting - than the trapeze. Camp is all about pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone, and what better way to do that then partaking in a completely bizarre, out-of-the-ordinary experience? Some camps actually have trapeze apparatus where campers are flung between bars as they perfect their aerial skills - exciting right? Trapeze (like summer camp) cannot begin without a jump, so take that leap of faith & who knows what you'll uncover this summer.

9. Waterskiing/wakeboarding

I reckon this is the most challenging activity on the waterfront. That's why mastering waterskiing or wakeboarding at camp should be on everyone's bucket list. If you've never tried it before - camp is the perfect place for you to get some practice in. The staff are all pros so can help with your technique, and you'll be standing up on the board/skis in no time. Remember, they teach kids all summer, so you should be able to pick it up easily... (surely?!) If you're already a seasoned professional at waterskiing or wakeboarding, be sure to include it on your application as summer camps are always on the look out for staff who are specialised in this area.

10. Yoga


And last, but certainly not least, is yoga. At a lot of camps, yoga is a vital activity where the campers can take time to unwind and slow down. The staff who lead yoga, often practice themselves in their free time so my top tip would be to see if they'll run a counselor session in the morning before wake up call. I know that extra hour in bed may sound a lot more appealing to most people, but I can vouch that having some calming time dedicated to mindfulness will set your day up for success.

So there you have it, 10 activities that you wouldn't expect to find at summer camp. For those looking for summer jobs abroad, this list is just a taste of what's out there in terms of activities. My biggest advice would be to make the most of the opportunity and try as many new things as you can while you're at camp. Who knows what hidden skills you may uncover?

Want to see the full list of camp activities?

When it comes to working at all-girls camps, Lauren is our pro. Summer camp changed her life & sharing stories is what she does best.

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