What Will Summer Camp Look Like This Year?
With the COVID-19 pandemic, plans for summer camps in metro Atlanta will look a little different this year.
On May 12, Gov. Brian Kemp issued an executive order with instructions for day camps on how to operate this summer. Some of these guidelines include: staggered drop-off and pickup times; parents remaining in their vehicles during drop-off and pickup; contactless check-in and check-out; screening temperatures; signs will instruct campers of the enhanced sanitation procedures, social distancing requirements and other instructions; and campers cannot enter if they have been diagnosed, exhibited symptoms or been in contact with a person with COVID-19.
Recently, Atlanta Parent spoke with several camps to learn more about how they are approaching camp this summer to share with our readers.
The High Museum of Art is staying up-to-date on government and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. At this time, they are moving forward with in-person camps.
“The High is doing a lot of planning,” says Virginia Shearer, Director of Education. “We love our summer camps. It’s a really important part of how we serve our communities and families. We’re really excited about the amazing art educators who have joined us to teach camps.”
North Cobb Christian School’s Summer Camps will begin May 26. They will run their camps in a small-group format with less than nine people, in adherence to the CDC guidelines and Gov. Kemp’s criteria.
“During the summer, we feel like children really need social engagement and active opportunities, and we’re committed to helping provide that,” says Patrick McDonald, NCCS Camps Director.
It’s time for camp at Phase Family Learning Center in Alpharetta. “Our goal
is to create an incredible camp experience in the midst of very unique circumstances,” says Frank Bealer, CEO.
Their summer camps will start in groups of 10, with a total attendance of 100 per
week, and they’re applying practices as laid out by the CDC and Bright from the Start. Camp operations will differ, including drop off and pickup at the curb, children will be checked for an elevated temperature and more frequent hand washing for children, as well as adding sinks to outdoor play spaces and gyms. Toys will also be sanitized.
Additional in-person camps include: McGinnis Woods Country Day School, Young Chefs Academy, Fabricate Studios, Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation, YMCA of Metro Atlanta and Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta.
Club SciKidz has enacted a “Summer Camp in a Box” program for grades Pre-K through eighth. Campers can choose from more than 10 options, and each camp theme comes with two boxes with science experiments, technology and engineering build projects, nature craft activities, lab equipment, science quotes and riddles, famous scientists and more.
Founder Bob Hagan says registration for camp usually happens from March
through May, but as registration wasn’t happening, they began to think of a new
Atlanta Shakespeare Company’s Shakespeare Superheroes Camp is going digital this summer. Using technology, they will be sharing video content, one-on-one instruction, collaborative work and activities.
“The camp provides the structure and outline of the day and lesson plans,” says
Kati Grace Brown, Associate Director of Education Sales and Camp Manager. “We
don’t want to contribute to screen time, so we have created a variety of activities,
including small group instruction, self-guided activities, physical activities and crafts. As part of the Shakespeare Theatre Association, there is digital content exclusively available to us we can share with our campers. We’ve been able to create
eight weeks’ worth of content using Shakespeare enrichment activities from all over the country.”
Atlanta Shakespeare Company surveyed parents to see if they would feel comfortable sending their children to camp, and if not, would they be interested in an online camp. “We asked our families how we can best serve you,” Brown says. “The online option makes the most sense for this summer.”
Other virtual camp programs include Alliance Theatre Summer Day Drama Camps, iD Tech Camps, Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, In the City Camps and MODA Summer Camps.
To find more information about camps’ summer plans, check out our Ultimate Guide to Summer Day Camps.