Camp Covington Brings New Experiences to Holmes High School Students

Camp Covington Brings New Experiences to Holmes High School Students

Camp Covington goes beyond elementary school. Covington Partners and Covington Independent Public Schools have collaborated for several years to provide enriching summer programming for students entering grades K-12 in Covington. This includes programs at all five elementary schools, the middle school, high school, and alternative program.

This year's high school students had the chance to experience two different one-week camps centering around creative arts and leadership. In addition, the program provided extended credit recovery hours for students to obtain class credits during summer. Nearly 60% of students utilizing the extended academic time with certified staff received at least one class credit during this time, while 100% of students completed a pre and post academic goals sheet.

One teacher working the program reflected a student attending the program, "Brady was the tutoring MVP this summer!"

With the extended time provided during Camp Covington, Brady was able to earn four class credits this summer.

Many students attended both the creative arts camp and the leadership camp at the high school. One EL (English learner) student who speaks very limited English was timid at the beginning of the two weeks, but overcame her fears of not speaking fluent English and enjoyed the camaraderie of her peers. 

"She was so pleasant to everyone and worked so hard to achieve her goals. Her language barrier did not stop her from joining in and actively participating in everything we did," Julie Wharton, camp coordinator, said of the student.

Willing to try anything and eager to learn new things but also share her rituals, the camp offered the student a wonderful opportunity to get to know some of the other students before school begins and speak to them about her past and discover new things.

While students learned several skills during the two weeks, including creating still life drawings, mixed media geometric pieces, clay sculptures, paintings, and jewelry, they also completed reflection journals, focused on leadership qualities through activities like vision boards, and participated in daily fitness and wellness activities. Students practiced yoga, played soccer and Frisbee, tossed football, and blew off steam by blowing bubbles.

One would think that high school students would be too old for bubbles; however, bubbles can spur curiosity, increase experimentation, and create opportunities for exploration and communication. Blowing bubbles can have a soothing impact on the nervous system. According to the camp coordinator, not growing up in the United States, two of the campers had never experienced blowing bubbles before Camp Covington.

"They were amazed by the bubbles. To watch the smiles on their faces was priceless," said Wharton of the experience. "Even though we spend a great deal of time trying to come up with premier enriching activities for our campers, sometimes it is the most basic things that can create a lasting impact. Blowing bubbles seems like a rite of passage for most of us, but we must remember that we all don’t have the same lived experiences. This is what makes hosting summer camp at Holmes High School most rewarding. We can learn new things with new people. What a simple gift!"

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