When a participant arrives at camp for the first time—it can be both exciting and overwhelming, especially if they are a newcomer to a camp full of individuals who have attended multiple times. While everyone else might know the songs, the jokes and the traditions, newcomers are oftentimes left to figure it all out for themselves, which leads to them feeling like an outsider.
It’s through the hidden curriculum that campers who have attended for multiple years have that insider knowledge, which leads them to love and appreciate all the nuances it brings. However, this leads to exclusion for newcomers.
As a leader, it’s important for you to be aware of and understand that the hidden curriculum exists within your programs, and it’s up to you to ensure newcomers feel included and want to return to camp time and time again.
Learn more about the hidden curriculum within your programs and how you can help your new participants feel more comfortable and included by watching our webinar with Jack Schott, co-founder of The Summer Camp Society.