Common questions about choosing the right camp
When choosing any camp, including a Trackers camp, we recognize that parents and guardians have a lot of important questions. Our expert staff is here to answer your most common questions and give insight about what to look for when choosing the right camp for your child.
What the heck is this camp about?
Different camps have different focuses. The goal is to find a program that fits the interests of your child. Or encourage them to try something new! At Trackers, we provide a wide range of programs to choose from, for all ages and interests. Our Rovers camps are designed for younger kids, grades K-1, with a focus on early childhood outdoor education. Our Guilds programs are for grades 2 and up, and focus on outdoor skills and lore including wilderness survival, farm craft, fishing, story immersion, and more. Our Arts programs teach ceramics, photography, woodworking, and blacksmithing. Our Outdoor Sports programs teach rock climbing, kayaking, biking, and more. Finally, our Overnight Camps provide a true old-school, back-country adventure. Our goal at Trackers is to provide the right camp for every kid.
Who are the people I’m entrusting my kid to?
At Trackers, we have a high bar for our camp staff, who we call Guides. Their qualifications include first aid training, skills experience, and enthusiasm for the programs they lead. They are required to pass a thorough background check and engage in a rigorous Trackers training course. During camps, the staff is supervised and evaluated by a supervisor. Most importantly, our Guides are excited to teach kids, create adventures, and collaborate with families to provide a truly magical experience.
Will my kid be safe at camp?
At Trackers, we teach real skills. Every day starts with a safety meeting related to the activities of the day and the needs of individual students. We assess all activities from a risk-management perspective, while also empowering kids to be active participants in their own well being. At the core of our staff’s training is our thorough Safety & Quality Manual. Before campers arrive, every site is assessed for risk and we develop strategies to mitigate challenges related to specific environments. In the field, we give additional oversight and support resources for Guides, including managers and activity guidance to frame the best possible camp experience.
Will my kid make friends at camp?
At the heart of Trackers is our focus on building community with our kids and families. It is part of our mission and includes both the human and natural world. By learning tracking, which is fundamental to all our programs, kids develop empathy for nature and experience the world as a web of connections. This insight helps campers connect with their human team. Embarking on an adventure together forms lasting friendships. Our guides model care, respect, and stewardship for kids to practice with one another and bring home to contribute to their families.
What will my kid be doing all day?
A typical day at camp begins with check-in, where parents and guardians can communicate with staff about the needs and interests of their child. Kids get to know each other in active games and discuss goals and expectations with their team for the day and week. In the morning, campers engage in activities based on the camp theme and story. They work together as a team, building friendships and skills. When campers and Guides pause to share snacks and lunch together, they also share stories and get to know each other better. After lunch, they move on to an active afternoon, wrapped up by sharing stories of the day as campers wait to be picked up. At Trackers, every camp is a story of adventure co-created between Guides and campers. The camp week ends with fun challenges, epic stories about the adventure, and celebrations of new friends.
What happens if my kid is being a pain?
At Trackers, our primary concern is the emotional and physical safety of our campers. Our student-to-teacher ratios help ensure this and safeguard our program quality for all campers. The student-to-teacher ratios determine each individual’s Fair Share of Attention. We recognize that students come with a variety of personal needs. Our ability to make accommodations to those needs is based on whether they allow us to meet the above criteria and offer everyone their Fair Share of Attention. When behavioral or social challenges arise that take more than an individual’s Fair Share of Attention, we don’t think about it as misbehaving, but as unmet needs around communication or maybe a kid just needs to hydrate or get a snack. If a student needs more than their Fair Share of Attention, we practice redirection, discuss unsafe or disruptive actions, and problem solve directly with students to understand and accommodate any unmet needs. When challenges limit a Guide’s ability to attend to the whole team, requiring additional strategies, we actively engage parents and guardians to find solutions. Our goal, help the camper see they can make choices that work for their needs and their team.
How do I communicate with staff and camp?
When you register for a Trackers Earth program, you’ll get an email confirming your registration. Three to four days before the program begins, you will get a reminder email with drop-off and pick-up information, what to bring to camp, and all the other important camp info you need. If you have any questions at all, you can call, email, or message us on our website. During camp pick up and drop off we communicate with guardians, share successes and collaborate on how to enhance a camper’s experience. Parents and guardians are encouraged to fill out a daily survey sharing their and their child’s experience and feedback. Camp coordinators regularly read these surveys and use the information to collaborate with Guides and improve your child’s experience in real-time. We also use surveys to celebrate successes. If we hear that your child really loves an experience, we will do our best to include more of it later in the week. This daily survey is unique to Trackers, offering opportunities for families to partner with us to make our camps the most awesome for kids.