Summer camps are informal learning programs where young children and adolescents spend a short period of time over the summer engaged in recreation or inquiry about one or more particular themes, topics, or fields of study. They constitute an environment in which groups of children and young adults can interact and learn while under adult supervision and guidance. Each summer, more than 10 million children in the United States attend day or sleepover camps sponsored by nonprofit organizations, higher education institutions, religious establishments, park and recreation programs, and other youth-focused agencies. Summer camps are one type of programmatic feature in the broader field of youth development, experiential education, and informal learning. This entry further discusses the nature and goals of summer camps; then it looks ...

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