New Activities at Camp Silver Beach

19 March 2013

As promised, I have taken the opportunity here to provide you with an overview of what we will be adding to the program in 2013. We are really making a push to freshen up the program, provide even better value for money, and really give the campers the best experience we can offer.

First, we will be adding a paddle boarding program. Paddle boarding has become a growing recreational activity, and will provide a very cool new addition to our water front program, providing some variation and excitement to our already very popular kayaking program. We will also be making extensions to our fishing and crabbing program, hoping to provide more opportunities for campers to participate in these opportunities on a daily basis. Arts and Crafts will also be getting an overhaul, with the addition of more cultural projects, brought to you by our international staff, as well as more take home projects available for the campers.

One of the bigger additions this year will be videography and photography. We are going to get the campers far more engaged in both of these aspects of camp, allowing them to participate daily in the taking of activity photos, selecting which ones go online for the camper parents, and then, finally, after leaving, it will be possible to put together a photobook of your camper’s favorite memories, and get a hard-copy delivered to you! Videos of skits, activities, cabin nights and camper memories will also be put together as the summer goes on, involving the campers once again in the making of these pieces, and editing together the best bits as a memories piece.
These are nice and simple right? Cool new activities, lots of new fun. Now it’s time to tell you about the major additions. Let’s talk about the House System. Everyone that has been to camp is familiar with our Tycoon point system. We are taking that idea a step further making Tycoon the new CSB House System. For those of you who don’t know what a House System is, let me explain. In the United Kingdom, a vast number of, especially private, schools have their own House System.

Each child who goes to one of these schools is put in a House on their first day. This House then gives them a sense of wider belonging for their entire school career. My High School, for example, had 4 Houses, Bannerman, Moore, Law and Clyde, named after successful former students. CSB’s House names are yet to be decided (keep an eye out on Facebook for naming opportunities…). So what does the House System mean for your camper? Well, in their first year (we will be using 2013 as EVERYONE’s first year), each child will be placed in a House. This placement is nothing to do with talent, friendships, ability or age. The only House placement requests, are for those who have siblings in that House, or, down the line, parents and grandparents, who were in that House. Let me say at this point, for those that are worried, House identity does not affect cabin assignment. Your camper can still be in a cabin with all their friends regardless of House identity. Where does all of this relate to Tycoon? Well, now, the points you earn, in what was Tycoon, go towards your House’s overall total. Every week there is an inter-House competition with a Trophy awarded to the winning House. There will also be ribbons for each member of that session’s House champions, and special ribbons mailed to the winner’s of the summer long House Championship.

Each House will have a shield, that records their summer competition victories down the years, and will also have a color, and a flag. The pinnacle of the House System during any week is House competition day. This is one day a week, where House points, identity and bonding are the focus. These will be led by counselors (also assigned to Houses), as well as by the ‘Officer’s Club’. Officers are those senior campers who now in the older camp age group, and have been with us for years. These are campers that the younger ones can look up to as role models. The Officer’s Club is something to aspire to be a part of, as well as an opportunity for those campers to develop themselves as leaders of the greater camp community. Each of these campers will also take home an Officer’s Club dog tag for all their efforts. So, with all of that being said, what are we looking to achieve with the House System? We want to create a sense of belonging, more than just to with the camp, but to a very specific community within the camp. We want to generate competition that is irrelevant to age and ability, where everyone can contribute. We want to expand camper’s horizons beyond just their cabin or their friend group they brought with them to camp. We want to give campers aspirations to grow within the House system, and to be part of some bigger achievement. We want to start a tradition that connects your camper’s experience, to the experience of their children’s when the time comes. We are a young camp, and traditions take time to develop, this year, in 2013, we start a new one, that hopefully will continue to be a part of the program for the entirety of CSB’s bright future.