Kupugani Blog

Why and What You Should Teach Your Teenager about Non-Stranger Rape

At our girls-only and boys-only camps in the Midwest, we teach our campers, and enforce, the rule of 3—whereby a child is never to be alone with an adult. I'm not sure why this rule isn't mandatory at all schools, religious institutions, and anywhere where children and adults interact...but that's a topic for another day.Part of the reason my wife and I taught our child about ownership of his body from an early age, is so he didn't run the risk of being abused. Other parents think along the same lines and also educate their children in that vein. Unfortunately, neither we, nor any of our friends...

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6 Ways to Become Well-Liked

At our Midwest summer camp, we focus on individual empowerment. Just as our campers maximize fun and sociability at camp, a recent blog by Lolly Daskal reinforces some ways that helps one maximize sociability.  See below for bullets, with the whole article at this link. An attitude of positivity and praise goes a long way. Be positive and encouraging. People are drawn to positivity. Have fun! Seriously. Be sensitive to what's going on around you; there will be times your playful side can have free rein, but at others it will be necessary to hold back Draw people out. Be curious about oth...

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10 Tips to Get your Kids through the Holidays Graciously and Gratefully

Around this time of year, it is important for parents to maintain their sanity while also continuing to be intentional about the life lessons their children learn. I recently came across an article by Amy Joyce, editor of On Parenting column for the Washington Post containing some great tips on thriving during the holiday season. The whole article is at this link with bullets below. Have them help with meal preparation. Take them with you when you shop for the holiday meal and ask for their input there and in the kitchen. Not only will having them do so help them understand and appreciate...

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5 Ways to Become a Lighthouse Parent (instead of a helicopter parent)

Child psychologist (and fellow Expert Online Training guru) Caren Baruch Feldman wrote a recent piece describing the challenges of mindful parenting, specifically about how to sufficiently guide children yet give them enough leeway to foster their independence. “Lighthouse parenting” allows children to ride the waves, while providing sufficient guidance so they don’t crash into the rocks. This style differs from “helicopter parents” who are constantly hovering anxiously overhead (or snowplow parents who would remove the rocks from the ocean). Bullets below, with the whole piece av...

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4 Ways to Encourage Your Child to Give Back

Especially as the holiday season with its accompanying bombardment of ads and other enticements to folks to buy buy buy, it's a good time to be mindful of encouraging out children to give back.  A recent Washington Post blog by Amy Joyce has some tips from the Family Dinner Project, a grassroots movement to encourage eating well and talking over dinner about things that really matter, about how to encourage children to give back. Text or call someone you appreciate. Talk about people your family appreciates, then take the time to text or call them, telling them so. Talk as a family abo...

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6 Ways to Be a Better Parent

We value working with our campers' parents at our summer camp near Chicago, Illinois. Just as we continually strive to improve our camp experience via counselor training and continually reviewing our program, we recognize that our parents also seek to be the best for their children. A recent article offers some good tips on how to be a more "intentional" parent. Bullets below, with the whole article by Susan Swann available at this link. 1. Be consistent. Be consistent with how you reinforce the implementation of your values. Remember to be a parent and not a friend. Don't be afraid to use th...

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9 Things to Do Before Bed to Maximize Your Well Being

At our summer camp outside of Chicago, Illinois, we recognize the importance of goal setting and positive psychology to maximize one's well being. A recent article details 9 steps you can take each night to do the same for yourself.  Summaries below, with the whole article by Jacquelyn Smith available at this link. 1. Read. Experts agree that reading is the very last thing most successful people do before going to sleep. 2. Make a to-do list. Clearing the mind nightly means cluttered thoughts don't end up invading your head space during the night. 3. Spend time with family. It's imp...

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Three Things You Didn’t Know About Teens

Sociologist Christine Carter has an interesting piece culled from her conversation with scientific expert on adolescence Ron Dahl, regarding insights about teens (and pre-teens). Highlights below, with the whole article at this link. #1: Your adolescent isn’t a teenager. Dahl avoids the term “teenager” because it implies that all the action only after the age of 13. Puberty typically lasts only two to four years, with most at the end of puberty by the age of 13. Today kids have a longer period of time to figure out who they are, to develop skills, to go to school. With pub...

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7 Ways to Maximize Your Emotional Intelligence

At our multicultural summer camp outside of Chicago, Illinois, we focus on individual empowerment and development of leadership skills. Psychologist Daniel Goleman (see his web site for more) emphasizes some critical pieces regarding emotional intelligence that helps one maximize leadership capabilities. TO INCREASE SELF-AWARENESS, you should: Maximize realistic self-confidence by understanding your own strengths and limitations so that you operate from competence and know when to rely on someone else on the team. Develop emotional insight by understanding the origins of your feelin...

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Learning How To Let Go (8 Reasons to Let Your Child Experience Life Without You)

Parents, especially American parents, sometimes obsess about safety. While we certainly want to encourage parental warmth and love (especially with newborns and toddlers), as children mature, you must create safe spaces to let them explore on their own. As we recognize at our girls-only and boys-only summer camps here in the Midwest, by giving children opportunities to overcome discomfort in new situations, they grow into competent, independent adults. As a blog by Steve Baskin—former executive board member of the American Camp Association (in this article from Psychology Today) discusses—...

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Kupugani touches on all the core values and enrichment that we hope to instill in our [child]. My husband and I absolutely love Camp Kupugani. Our [child] gained immensely from camp.

Lisa G.

Everyone…was just so, so personable, kind, and the kind of person I want
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[My daughter’s] face lights up when she speaks about camp, it’s a priceless experience.

Kenya P.

I have never come in contact with such a wonderful group of people at a camp before. Everyone did an outstanding job, the camp was so organized, it was unbelievable.

Joe M.

She absolutely loves the camp, the staff, and all the friends she makes there. I consider Kupugani to be a big influence in helping her grow and expand her mind each summer.

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