The offered activities for this Space Camp were nice and appropriate for the
purpose. However, I would suggest for future camps to first recruit the
potential instructors and choose activities according to their skills in order to
make use of the full potential of the staff. Additionally, the local facilities need
to be familiar to the organizers in order to make a plan for simultaneously
happening activities. We often had to improvise and it was exhausting to lead
activities with three or four different groups and many kids in the gymnasium.
Especially for rainy days, there need to be enough other suitable rooms/halls where activities can take place.
Furthermore, it might make sense to offer different activities for juniors and
teens/seniors in order to prevent injuries. Many kids hurt their fingers and
arms respectively during ball games. This risk is especially high for the youngest
kids who do not have the strength or coordination skills yet to properly manage
the impact of big and heavy balls. If it is not possible to organize different
activities, the risk of injuries can be decreased by a diligent warm-up. My group
told me that they always had a “Camp Song”, one of the actual chart songs with
Space-Camp lyrics. An idea would be to use this song and to establish a warmup
routine which every instructor can use before starting the activity to make
sure that every participant is physically prepared. At least, all the instructors
should insist on a warm-up so that it is just natural for the kids to do that
before starting their activity.
I received very positive overall feedback from the participants for this camp.
Using the individual skills and resources of the counselors and offering age-appropriate activities would probably result in even more exciting and diverse activities which are safe for all kids to participate in.