"Snail Mail" Kids (of all ages!) at camp very much enjoy receiving hand written letters. Everyday after lunch, everyone is excited to check their mailbox for cards and letters. Give her camp address out to friends and relatives, along with a suggestion to concentrate more on how she is spending her time at camp than on any negative details at home. Keep the tone of the letter encouraging and positive. Mailing Address:
ADK WildHorse Camp
776 County Route 18.
Lake Clear, NY 12945
"Email" We do not allow our campers the use of constant email as we find that computers and the internet have a way of absorbing a child's time in more negative ways than positive. Whether the camper remains at camp for a week or longer, we find that this is one of the ways to show your daughter that there is no need to be dependent on the constant use of social media such as facebook and twitter. Your daughter should also bring a camera where she can document her time here and while at home, upload her memories to her computer. Please make sure that your child brings stamps and envelopes to write home with !
The brains of Internet addicts, it turns out, look like the brains of drug and alcohol addicts. In a study published in January, Chinese researchers found “abnormal white matter”—essentially extra nerve cells built for speed—in the areas charged with attention, control, and executive function.
A parallel study found similar changes in the brains of video game addicts. And both studies come on the heels of other Chinese results that link Internet addiction to “structural abnormalities in gray matter,” namely shrinkage of 10 to 20 percent
in the area of the brain responsible for processing of speech, memory, motor control, emotion, sensory, and other information. And worse, the shrinkage never stopped: the more time online, the more the brain showed signs of “atrophy.” Read More...
"Telephone" We strongly believe that phone conversations interfere with your child's adjustment to camp. If you need to find out how your daughter is adjusting, you may call the office at 518.302.6227 and we will arrange a time for a Parent Liaison to speak with you about your camper. The Parent Liaison will also have an progress report update. The parent will be informed of all achievements, activities and any problems that may arise during camp. Having mentioned our regulations against telephone conversations, we do make a few exceptions. Kids who want to "check-in" after a week of camp, can speak to their parents for a few minutes in the evening on day 6 of camp. Parents should also keep in mind the fact that there are girls who have not contacted their parents in weeks and as a result, the parents nudge the camp staff to have the girls show "signs of life" in the form of a quick call. We find this amusing as everyone is so busy here that we forget to remind our campers to regularly call their parents (instead of calling their friends !)
"Visitors" Camp WildHorse does not host a Parent's Visitation Day. We have found that certain campers may be in the process of adjusting, and seeing familiar faces may make that more difficult. The Camp also suggests to sign up your child's friends to camp, if that would make your daughter more comfortable, this way the girls can be more opt to be socially interactive and will also be considered to have same bunk assignments. If you would like to see the camp yourself, your daughter could serve as your "Tour Guide" during the Closing Days. She can then show you her favorite places, horses and activities.
We have specified a few main points and questions that are useful for parents of the child that stays at WildHorse Camp.
"Trips" Several times a week, the campers prepare for trips. We encourage all campers to spend time together and our Trip Activities are friendly for all ages & abilities. From hiking St. Regis, to canoeing or visiting the Wildlife Refuge to "Take a Wolf for a Walk", we found that these, low stress, nature-oriented and shared outings help with the camper adjustment process.
The most important part about shared activities is that we all do them together ! Some kids know more than others but everyone needs that learning curve to be good at many things the camp offers.
Some of the offsite activities inlude: canoeing/kayaking, rafting, paintball, professional print making, professional screen printing, river tubing, lake tubing, ski-jump tubing, hiking into the mountains, visiting interactive museums, boat tours, camping, trips to wilderness beaches & islands, the movies and NYC style pizza parlor, water sports & lakes and more.
Activity Choice - the campers vote for activity type - every day they have a choice between an off-site activity and 2nd riding period.
What to keep in mind: Please keep in mind that certain activities are long in duration- between 6-9 hours. At times, the girls return back to camp late into the evening. We try to our best to keep to our designated schedule, however, at times we do not have enough hours in the day ! If we happen to return to camp late, the campers sleep in for an additional hour in the morning before chores and breakfast. Campers may be tired upon returning home after several long weeks of camp.
Understanding Camp Activities
Everyone looks forward to the Mealtimes at Camp Tucka Kitchen. Here at camp, we ensure that your child will have wholesome, fuel propelling breakfasts such as a prepared bowl of granola, maple oatmeal with milk and topped with honey or syrup. Side of two lightly scrambled eggs. For dinner, we are a big fan of flounder in light egg batter, slightly goldened in a skillet or baked in oven.
We also grow a vegetable garden for the purposes of education (availability depends on season!). Food items are provided by our fantastic food caterer.
Breakfast: Muesli with hot milk/hot water, scrambled/sunny side up eggs, "french toast with whipped cream and syrup"," grilled cheese sandwiches"," ham cheese sandwiches", "bagels with cream cheese, nutella, strawberry preserves and cereal of their choice", "veggie/meat omelette and toast", "pancakes, hash browns, scrambled eggs, bacon"
Lunch: " peanut butter and banana PJ", "home made spaghetti with corn bread", "chicken nuggets with mashed potatoes/ pasta/ mac n cheese", "baked flounder in egg with spanish rice and steamed veggies"
Dinner: "Broiled chicken drumsticks & thighs seasoned herbs, served with mashed
potatoes/spanish/jambalaya rice, steamed broccoli, mixed veggies ", Juice, milk, drink mixes, orange juice or
water offered. "Spaghetti with home made sauce and ground beef, corn bread or garlic bread", grilled
"chicken with spiced pasta side, and steamed veggies", "grilled pork with mashed potatoes/mac n cheese",
"alfredo chicken with pasta, cheese, casserole bake", "lasagna, corn bread, steamed veggies".
Supper: milk with favorite cereal, cookies, muffins.
We have strategically placed water fountains throughout the ranch to encourage our campers to drink water regularly. Our suggestion to parents is to purchase your child a reusable water bottle to limit unnecessary waste caused by disposable bottles. Please label the water bottle with your camper's name ! For water bottles and other items you can go to Everything Summer Camp to purchase items for the camp.
If your child has special dietary needs please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to give us the details. We cannot accommodate many diet restrictions, therefore it is best to inquire before sign up !
Homesickness & Acculturation Stress
It is perfectly natural for campers and staff members to experience a level of homesickness. Children that are unfamiliar with their surroundings or children that experience difficulty making friends will have the tendency to feel the most vulnerable. It is our specialty to deal with introverted children that may need opening up.
Feelings of homesickness usually occur in the evenings, before bedtime, when campers feel the most tired and vulnerable. Usually, every day for that camp child becomes brighter and brighter especially when your daughters purpose was to bond with horses and learn the ropes of riding, horsemanship and jumping.
We value our relationships with our campers and that is is the reason for which we assign a Parent Liaison which will keep track of everything your daughter is experiencing.
Achievements, goals, or any issues that may arise will all be included in a report update. If absolutely necessary, we will arrange a call for you and your daughter to discuss her feelings.
American Camp Association
Phillips Exeter Academy psychologist Dr. Christopher Thurber studied homesickness in 329 boys between the ages of 8 and 16 at resident camp. According to his results, homesickness is the norm rather than the exception. A whopping 83 percent of the campers studied reported homesickness on at least one day of camp.
Thurber and the American Camp Association (ACA) suggest the following tips for parents to help their child deal with homesickness at camp... Read More..
Homesickness at ADK WildHorse Camp
Over the years we have noticed that incoming children adjust immediately, some adjust in a few days, while others do not adjust at all. When our campers find themselves for the first time at camp, which to them is considered "strange" surroundings, the feelings of homesickness may vary.
Parents, at times, send their children to camp for a period of "acculturation". Which in turn forces the staff of the camp to handle temper tantrums, crying outbursts, and eating disorders. We urge parents to consider accustoming your child to a camp-like experience prior to sending your child to an overnight camp.This reduces stress on both the child and the staff at camp, which promotes a more independent way of dealing with the ups and downs of maturity.
Children who are unwilling or incapable to adjust will be sent home to protect the atmosphere and focused operation of the camp.
Useful recommended blogs for parents that are detecting homesickness in their children:
Due to our intimate enrollment size, the camp revolves around every camper's behavior. We change our schedules regularly to adjust to every camper's needs. The campers wake up at 7:00 am, eat breakfast at 7:45, ride at 9:00 am and go on activities for the afternoon. Campers can choose between a 2nd riding activity or an off-site activity such as Adirondack Extreme, The Wild Center, Adirondack Wildlife Refuge, Adirondac Rafting, Tiger Strype Paintball, Ausable Chasm, Hiking the 46 High Peaks, Boots & Birdies, Adirondack Museum, Six Nations Museum and more.
We experienced that some children do not enjoy a less rigid, camp experience, and prefer something less regimented. ADK WildHorse Camp is similar to that of a girl scout camp. We are rustic, relaxed, and have incorporated structured and unstructured time into our program. Please speak with your child in choosing your next camp experience to ensure that the child will be pro-active at camp, and be willing to participate in all aspects of the activities our camp has to offer.
Preparing Your Child for Camp
We are confident your child's summer at ADK WildHorse will be one of the most memorable and rewarding experiences of her life. Camp is quite different and is a perfect ice-breaker into a life of surprises, expectations, twists and turns. We have found that preparing your child for camp and determining what is appropriate before camp begins, is the best route to make a decision between choosing a day or resident camp.
The following links are recommendations from The American Camp Association
"My daughter absolutely loved the setting, the stable and her friends. The horses are well taken care of, very well trained, and the activities are absolutely spectacular ! Amanda came back with a huge smile on her face, independent and outspoken. I absolutely love this program, Natalia & Travis are the best people for the job, and would consider them our dearest friends ! Thank you so much for what you do ! ~ Samantha C from Austin, TX
Staying in touch with your camper
It is our belief that your daughter's upcoming summer at WildHorse will be one of the most memorable and rewarding experiences of her life. She will find ADK to be fun, will make life long friends, and look back at her experience with a sense of sentimentality as she grows older. Truthfully, there is a distinction between camp and ordinary life, and it may take a bit of adjustment to achieve the most out of time away from home. Over time, we adapted new approaches that improve the transition to camp life, and makes it more comforting.
Be positive, it's a learning experience, and for some, a first time away from camp.
Decide on camp together, shop for camp clothes and riding attire, look over the materials, ask questions, determine what your child can do realistically. Camp is an exciting experience, and you, as a parent, should express that excitement to your daughter !
If sleepaway camp was not an option for your daughter, and now she finally showed interest, set up some practice dates.
You may want to set up a nature oriented experience in your backyard - invite some friends, set up a tent, and spend the weekend outside. Your daughter may also benefit from a sleepover at a friends house or the house of relatives.
If your daughter is nervous about coming to camp, reassure her that other girls feel the same way. It's only human ! It's something new.
Even the campers who have been to WildHorse get a little anxious on opening day. A new counselor or perhaps a new instructor will be at camp that your daughter has never met before or campers that she is not familiar with. Advise your daughter to be positive and reinforce her ability of making friends quickly. A positive attitude will also help her in taking in all that camp has to offer.
Make sure that your daughter knows that everyone at home wants her to have an outstanding time at WildHorse.
Avoid statements like “You will have fun, but I am going to miss you so much.”. Do not mix negative aspects of camp such as homesickness when your daughter is on the verge of leaving home for a considerable amount of time. Your daughter should be fully engaged with the idea of camp and not be concerned about msising Mom, Dad, brothers, sisters, Grandma and the family dog.
First and foremost - stay away from promising your daughter early "pick up" deals.
We can't stress this enough throughout your child's stay at camp. One of the worst things a parent can tell their daughter is " If you dislike camp, don't worry, I'll come and get you". Believe it or not, this type of "decision" can linger throughout check-in, and the rest of camp. It's a negative approach to time away that can set her up for failure.
Once a child is told that "there is a way out" they will attempt to find everything wrong with their stay at camp. From finding fault with other campers, to disliking their horse choice, your daughter will make camp sound worse than it is.
Camp operators still have yet to see a child traumatized by being away from their parents - something that never happens unless the child has a pre existing condition.
Talk about her concerns, ask questions and listen.
As you get closer to the first day of camp, it is understandable that your daughter may experience "cold feet" about going off to camp. Again, rather than feeding into her anxiety, you can ask her a few questions instead: "Did you check off all the items you need from the camp packing list ? You will look like a pro in your new riding gear !", "Did you pack your favorite stuffed animal, a camera and photos ? You can take photos and bring some memories to show us when you get back, your brother (or sister) will be jealous !. "Remember that swimming competition you did so good at ? I bet you will be as good at water skiing too ! Communicate and reinforce her small victories and successes she has experienced in other situations.
Be realistic. Have realistic expectations !
Just like everything in life, camp has its high points and low points. Not every aspect of camp will always be taken in with enthusiasm, and every moment with wonder. Prepare your daughter by discussing the ups and downs that she may experience at camp. Some ideas include: that all campers may not always agree or have the same opinion, that barn chores may not always be fun or pleasant, that getting up in the morning may not always be thrilling, that you can't pick your own horse for safety reasons, that the activity for the afternoon wasn't something you expected.
The purpose of camp is to relax, learn and have fun. It is not to stress, to be unreasonably unhappy, or self-indulgent and fussy.
"We want the children of our camp to succeed, to feel good about who they are, what they do and remember that there is much more to accomplish in life - this camp experience is just the beginning." ~ Natalia, Camp Director
Why not read about it ?
A few book we recommend reading before you will send your child off to camp ! Mostly humorous, informative and shed-a-light sets of literature that will keep even the most conservative minds open. These books are available at amazon.com
Not sure if your child will like camp ?
Lake Clear, NY 12945 Phone: 518.302.6227 © Copyright 2017 ADK WildHorse Ranch. All Rights Reserved
Check - in and Check - Out Sundays at Summer Camp
After enrollment we prepare you for camp by providing you a website where you can log in and download necessary forms & camp materials for season 2015. Please follow the following suggestions to ensure that Camp Check-out & Check-In go smoothly !
1. Check-In time is after 1:30 pm. Prior to arrival please call or text 518.570.2601 with an exact arrival time so that one of our staff members can open the gate to the ranch for you. We keep the gate to the ranch locked. If you arrive when the gate is closed, please text the above number to let the staff know that you have arrived. Otherwise you may go unnoticed as the driveway is a distance away from the main barns and cabins. We ask you to please only spend 30 minutes dropping off your camper as this reduces the amount of commotion we have at camp.
2. Check-out time is 12:00. If you will be picking up your child later than 12:00 please inform the directors and staff by calling or texting 518.570.2601. This will enable us to have your daughter ready for pickup.
3. Sundays are non-eventful, low key days where the existing campers help all staff with cleanup and cabin pickup. The new arrivals are given a tour by our already established girls and introduce them to the horses. After all new arrivals are in for the evening, the campers go on an ice-breaking activity such as adirondack miniature golf, bowling, and more.
4. Upon arrival parents sign in their child with staff. Camper parents will meet the directors and staff of ADK WildHorse, ensuring that everything goes smoothly and that all questions are answered.