New Perspectives
New Perspectives

Jan 23, 2007, 08:31

Honesdale, Pennsylvania
Mayer and Ninette Stiskin, Founders
(800) 323-9908

Review by Judi Bessette

Summit Camp, located in Honesdale, PA has been providing summer experiences for boys and girls with special education needs, ages 7 - 17, since the late 1960's. Today's campers come with a variety of diagnoses including ADD/ADHD, learning disabilities, NVLD, anxiety issues, mild mood disorders, etc. Many of the campers are on medication. But more importantly, these children all experience difficulty making and maintaining age appropriate peer relationships.

Summit Camp offers different experiences for campers of different ages. On a typical summer day, kids ages 8 - 15 will be involved in waterfront activities, sports and athletics, creative arts activities, computer skills and educational activities - presented in a variety of discovery centers. All activities are designed for kids who have had trouble in almost all of these areas in the past. Campers can choose a 4-week or an 8-week program.

When a camper turns 15, he or she becomes part of the Super Teens program - learning work-related skills while serving as waiters and waitresses for one meal each day. Other work options are available for interested teens. Super Teens earn a small stipend for their efforts and have the opportunity to go to town to spend their earnings.

In recent years, 10-day Mini-Camp sessions have been added for younger children - serving kids between the ages of 7 - 13. These sessions are especially good for first-time campers.

Recognizing that older teens may feel they are too grown up for camp, Summit Travel offers interesting trips - all of which are additional opportunities for structured and supervised social experiences. For summer 2007, the Travel Program will offer three excursions. There are two 21 -day trips; one exploring the Northwest and the other exploring the Southwest; and one 12 day mini-trip to Canada. Trips can be combined with camp sessions and young travelers are able to sign on for more than one trip.

The camp founders, the Stiskins, have been involved in the world of special education since the 1960's. Staff members include Masters Level clinicians, licensed teachers with special education credentials, specialists in child advocacy and distance learning as well as staff certified in outdoor experience and recreation therapy.

[The information on Summit Camps was gathered by our Research Affiliate, Judi Besette.]

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