TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time

Category: Summer Programs

Posted April 5, 2014, 11 a.m. by Marie Schwartz | View Comments
Are Summer College Visits Worthwhile?

Most parents of high school juniors—or rising seniors—feel some pressure as this summer before senior year rolls around. The college application process looms. The essay topic remains a mystery. Then, there’s the biggest question: Where to apply? As a parent, you may see summer—when your child has no classes, no sports, no extracurricular activities, and perhaps you have some time off from work—as a good time to get a jump on college tours. Campuses in summer are generally sleepier, slow, and far emptier than during the academic year. So, is it worth your time—and your student’s—to take some tours? Here ...

Posted March 26, 2014, 11:06 a.m. by Julia Levine Rogers | View Comments
Traveling Responsibly: A Beginner’s Guide

You may not realize it, but when you travel abroad, you become an automatic ambassador for America. Leaving the country for a gap year adventure is thrilling, but it’s important to note how your behavior abroad can impact you or the people of your host country. Taking steps to be respectful will not only help you have a positive international experience, but it will contribute to a better global reputation for all Americans! Here are some simple things to remember: DON’T: Dress inappropriately. This goes for men and women. Different regions of the world have different norms, so it’s important ...

Posted March 24, 2014, 1:27 p.m. by Reese Hendricks | View Comments
How to Protect Your Teen From Summer Learning Loss

Is your teenager experiencing SLL? Most parents do a pretty good job of helping their teens stay occupied during the summer. However, staying occupied is one thing, preventing SLL, or Summer Learning Loss, is another battle. When I was a teacher in South Korea there were countless admirable things I gleaned from their education system. In fact, American educators and parents can learn much from an industrious nation like South Korea; after all, they have been in the business of teaching and fostering their youth for over 5,000 years. For example, South Korea has nothing near a 12-week summer vacation ...

Posted March 21, 2014, 12:25 p.m. by Katherine Dayton | View Comments
Plugged or Unplugged? Technology and Summer Programs

Recently, there’s been a bit of lively buzz in the summer camps community about a new policy announced by the #1 ranked camp in Pennsylvania that allows “Smartphones, music players, tablets, e-readers, even laptops–they’re all fair game...” Technology can be a great thing, but should it be used in the great outdoors? Allowing Technology Kids are entwined in their gadgetry. In fact, almost everyone uses gadgetry for business and social commerce these days. Even in under-resourced countries worldwide, no matter how remote or economically depressed, one is hard-pressed not to find cell phones prevalent, at least. The scope of summer ...

Posted March 20, 2014, 2:44 p.m. by Randi Mazzella | View Comments
Why I Send My Teen to Sleepaway Camp

When my ten-year-old daughter begged me to go sleepaway camp, I was conflicted. I knew many people — adults and kids — that thought sleepaway camp was the greatest experience. A chance to enjoy some independence, make new friends and create wonderful memories. But selfishly, I hated the idea of her being away from home most of the summer. But ultimately, I decided to let her try it. This past summer marked my daughter’s fifth year at the same camp. At fifteen, I know for sure that sleepaway camp was the best place for her to spend the summer. Here ...

Posted Feb. 27, 2014, 9:19 a.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
Value of Experiential Learning

The teenage years are characterized by curiosity, development, and experimentation. Traditionally, high school classes and extracurricular activities help foster these traits and aid teenage success inside the classroom and out. We believe experiential learning can advance teen success even further. Today, the field of experiential learning is booming. Teens have access to many more opportunities than their parents had at their age—they can travel to almost any destination during the summer, spend a gap year volunteering after high school, and even practice their future career ambitions with an internship. With thousands of programs available to students around the world, teenagers ...

Posted Feb. 25, 2014, 11 a.m. by Katherine Dayton | View Comments
Five Smart Reasons to Plan Your Summer Now

For high school and middle school students who haven’t decided what to do this summer, right now is not too soon to ponder possibilities. Whether you have a clear idea of a summer travel program in the U.S. or abroad, only an inkling, or no idea whatsoever but know you want to do something, a good tactic is to consciously plant the seed now. Keep it on your radar while options are open and you have the time to investigate summer programs. There is an old adage: “What you give is what you get.” The time you take now to ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 3:28 p.m. by Stephen Friedfeld | View Comments
10 Summer Activities That Look Good on College Applications

Does your child plan to catch some rays and chill in flip-flops this summer? While summer vacation offers a great respite from school, the activities your child chooses to participate in can actually help with college admissions. How an applicant spends his or her time during break can tell admission officers a lot about your child. Here are ten fun activities to help keep your child busy this summer that’ll guarantee a fun and productive break. 1. Start a blog There are many popular sites that make blogging easy, such as WordPress, Tumblr, Blogspot and Xanga. Before starting a blog, ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 12:43 p.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
Summer Program Promoting Sustainability

Joshua Nodiff gained insight and passion for the environment during his overnight summer program. In His Own Words: Joshua Nodiff Shares His Summer Experience at BELL. Tell us a little bit about BELL The Brown Environmental Leadership Lab (BELL) was a remarkable experience that certainly changed my life for the better. The program is centered around environmental science, hands-on education, social activism, and community leadership. BELL brought together a diverse group of likeminded students from all over the world that subsequently became a family to me. Why did you choose BELL? While initially researching for programs to attend last summer, ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 11:10 a.m. by Jill Tipograph | View Comments
5 Things to Consider When Your Teen Travels Over The Summer

You’ve enrolled your teen in their summer program. Check it off your list. While your teen may think he/she is ready to conquer the world with independence, parents often know best. Help them prepare and transition to their away-from-home program with these tips: 1. Review with your teen the program’s guidelines, requirements, and restrictions. This includes electronics, laptops, cell phone policies, clothing, amount of permissible luggage (remember he/she has to transport it!). Your teen needs to respect these rules as well as the program’s staff. As most smart phones have cameras, some programs do not allow these devices. Look into ...

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