The Country Experience summer camp is a hands-on experience, using practical real-world tools, in a 3-step process where kids 1) learn from others, 2) practice the task to develop competence, and then 3) share their mastery by mentoring others. Campers choose activities that interest them, taking on a role in the day-to-day work and play on the farm. Every day is different, full of the ever-changing experiences in the country. Rather than standing on the sidelines watching adults, campers are inside the fences shouldering responsibility, making decisions and building confidence through accomplishment.
Who comes to farm camp? TCE is for kids who enjoy being outdoors, who love animals, and are curious about experiences and life on a farm.
So, what exactly does a camper get to do? Every day we choose from hundreds of different activities, taken from the real-life needs and opportunities of the farm – checking on the rabbits, picking berries, collecting eggs, preparing a meal, repairing a fence, feeding the goats, building in the woodshop, playing on the lawn and in the pastures. Importantly, campers have freedom with responsibility, picking projects, chores and play that they find fun, rather than being assigned them by an adult.
What’s it like? Life on the farm is “family style.” We eat together, work together, play together. Friendships build naturally, we learn to trust and be trustworthy, and to treat others as we would like to be treated. Adults are mentors and guides facilitating discovery rather than umpires or policemen.
Chores and Projects, is it all work? Nope! In the daily schedule there’s far more time for play than work – structured or spontaneous, on the wide front lawn, with a new friend or favorite animal, in the hay-barn, on “hammock row,” in the woods, along the path, down by the ponds, there is fun-filled opportunity everywhere you look. Of course, we sit and sing by the campfire, make things from nature, turn on the disco ball in the barn, and sometimes just watch the sunrise/sunset or gaze at the stars.
Any special considerations? The routines of farm life is easily understood and often meets a child’s developmental needs. However, we are not trained as a treatment or rehabilitation facility, nor are we staffed to provide one on one care. We appreciate your kind consideration, and partnership in providing the right environment for your child, and those at camp.