Archive for the 'Letter-writing advice' Category



The Letters to Camp Packing List

What to pack in that first letter

This week, our oldest left for camp.  So of course we immediately dashed off our first letter.  Hard to say why, but that first letter is always a mind-bender.  It had been 10 months since I’d written my last camp letter.  And as usual, I had such a big packing list filled with things I had to say in that special, first letter:

Continue reading ‘The Letters to Camp Packing List’

Guest Post: Mom and Dad – Don’t Forget About Me

— By Jeff & Lonnie Lorenz

This post comes from Jeff and Lonnie Lorenz, owners and directors of Swift Nature Campa summer camp for boys and girls ages 6-15 and located 2.5 hours Northeast of Minneapolis Minnesota.  Swift Nature Camp blends traditional summer camp with an appreciation for nature and the environment, providing an education outside the classroom. Activities include archery, canoeing, art & crafts, skiing, as well as backpacking and canoeing trips.  Contact the camp at 630-654-8036.

From time to time, we invite guests to post their letter-writing experiences to the Letters to Camp Blog.  Interested?  Click to learn more.

Mom and Dad – Don’t Forget About Me

Advice from seasoned camp directors

Kids love to get letters!! Don’t we all. Some parents will send a little care package filled with a comic books, some little games, a bandana, posters, photos or other items, but no food, please. Correspondence with your camper is a critical aspect of the camp experience, and we can offer some practical suggestions. Continue reading ‘Guest Post: Mom and Dad – Don’t Forget About Me’

Guest Post: Letter from Rosemary the Cat

— By Curlygrandma

This post comes from Curlygrandma of Curlygrandma’s Blog.  From time to time, we invite guests to post their letter-writing experiences to the Letters to Camp Blog.  Interested?  Click to learn more.

When my girls were very young, they would write letters to Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and even to the tooth fairy. As a good mama, I found myself writing a lot of letters at 2am. And unfortunately, my youngest daughter, Shannan, never missed a chance to ask a dozen questions in her letters. She loved writing letters, but mostly, she loved getting letters.   Continue reading ‘Guest Post: Letter from Rosemary the Cat’

Advice: Letters FROM Camp

I started this blog because it’s so hard to find ideas about writing letters TO camp.  But there’s no shortage of parental advice and concern about letters FROM camp.  Check these out:

  • Decoding letters from camp. A recent New York Times post, “Letters from Sleep-away Camp,” included Randy Wedin’s decoding of his kids’ letters and their evolving sentiments.
  • No news… The Summer Camp Handbook advises that “No news is good news when it comes to kids at camp.  If you don’t receive any letters from your child while she’s at camp, you’re not alone.”
  • Downs and Ups. In the blog, Life the C Train, Clare’s “Letters from Camp” chronology perfectly summarizes the parent/child letter-writing experience.  If your child has never been to camp before, this is a must-read.
  • Letters = Love. Amy Howorth guest-wrote for Parent Talk Today.  She told how she dutifully to her kids at camp, which her kids did not of course reciprocate.  But all was forgotten when her son wrote, “Thanks for sending me the letters mom. It made me feel loved.”
  • Letter from a shopaholic. If you’re a shopaholic, it’s probably a safe bet that your kid is one too, even at camp.  Check out Camp Letters – An SOS Letter from Summer Camp.
  • Visiting Day. A touching story from several years ago.  Every parent will relate to this story of letters and visitng day.
  • Funny letters back and forth. Mike Sacks’ funny — and very sarcastic — letters to and from camp – I recently linked to this funny post too.

Great Letter-Writing Advice from Camp Greystone

What do letters to camp have to do with camp atmosphere?
As it turns out, plenty!

A great summer camp will work to create a specific type of atmosphere in camp.  Many camps believe that summer is a time to disconnect from email, cell phones, etc.  When sending letters, emails or faxes, remember that camps set their policies to reflect the atmosphere and values of the camp.  In other words, expect that policies will vary widely from camp to camp.

I come across many camp websites that offer thoughtful suggestions and guidelines for letter-writing.  For example, check out Camp Greystone in North Carolina.  They also had great advice about birthdays too – see the last blog post.

Among other things, Camp Greystone advises parents to:

  • Write letters by hand
  • Be creative
  • Take time to do a good job
  • Write often
  • Allow plenty of time for “snail mail” to work

You can read more on their site.  As you can tell from their tips, kids enjoy letters and letter-writing is an art that requires time and even planning.  Of course, that’s why I started this blog – to help parents write great letters to their campers.

A final note on logistics. As I mentioned earlier, while most camps allow and encourage hand-written USPS mail (aka “snail mail”), email and fax policies vary widely between camps.  Unlike Camp Greystone, most camps seems to allow email although many will charge extra for it.  Make sure to check with your camp to ensure that you fully understand their policies.

For more tips, see last summer’s post on letter-writing advice .


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Finally – Help for Parent Letter-Writers

Challenged to write great letters to your camper(s)? Help is here! The Letters to Camp Blog will help you to write better letters. More

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