We did it again! Bosque Summer has been named the best summer camp in Albuquerque by the Albuquerque Journal Readers’ Choice Awards for the fifth year in a row! This year, Bosque Summer served 560 campers who participated in more than 1,400 sessions, making the summer of 2022 the largest Bosque Summer program ever.
Why Bosque Summer?
So, what is it that makes the Bosque Summer experience so special and keeps families coming back year after year? If you asked our campers, they would tell you they love summer camp at Bosque School simply because it is so much fun. That’s something we love to hear because, of course, summer camp should be just that—fun!
Summer is a time for kids to be kids. It's a season of playing in the sun, enjoying the outdoors, making new friends, and going on adventures. Having time to play is essential to child development, and research shows that children who have ample time to play are more creative and imaginative, have healthier relationships with their peers, and are happier overall.
Just as importantly, a great summer curriculum also provides campers with opportunities to learn new skills, gain confidence, independence, and push themselves beyond their comfort zone to achieve things they didn’t know were possible.
Intentional Program Development
When Bosque Summer camp director, Zach Lang, builds the summer curriculum each year, he takes all these things into account and intentionally creates classes that align with the same Bosque School philosophy and core values that our teachers employ in their classrooms year round:
So, not only do our Bosque Summer campers participate in classes that are fun and exciting, they also learn to problem solve, pursue challenges, think independently and creatively, and connect with the community and the world around them.
So Many Classes, So Much Fun to Be Had
Each full-day camp was designed so that campers participate in four daily activities that involve creativity, discovery, movement, and performance. This year’s more than 60-course selections included classes in martial arts, culinary skills, archery, field science, ceramics, archeology, coding, painting, rock climbing, chemistry, yoga, babysitting, and musical theater—just to name a few!
Yoga and Breakdancing in Motion
Capoeira—a complex Afro-Brazilian martial art that incorporates music, history, balance, strength, and self-expression—was a camp favorite this year. The course was taught by Hayley Pedrick
who, in addition to being a Bosque School humanities teacher, is also a student of the United Capoeira Association. Ms. Pedrick was first drawn to capoeira because of the relationship between movement and music. She says, “It looked like yoga and breakdancing in motion, plus the music was hypnotic. I had lived in Brazil and became proficient in Portuguese before I started capoeira…I started taking classes when I was living and working outside of Antigua, Guatemala, and was immediately captivated by the movements, the music, the play involved.”
This summer, Ms. Pedrick passed on her wealth of knowledge and her passion for capoeira to her summer camp students. She even brought in some local capoeiristas to work with the campers, giving them a chance to learn from some of the most highly skilled capoeiristas in the community “I hope kids in camp got a taste for the complexity of capoeira as an Afro-Brazilian martial art that incorporates music, history, balance, strength, balance, and self-expression,” said Ms. Pedrick. “I had so much fun with the kids, and the greatest joy is seeing some kids drawn to the main instrument, the berimbau, and others to the acrobatic-flows. I was honored to meet happy families of kids who tried capoeira at Bosque Summer!”
Singing and Signing
American Sign Language (ASL), taught by Bosque School alum Mei Daly, was another popular course this year. The students began the week with little to no experience in sign language at all, and by the end of the week, they were able to sign the alphabet, numbers, their names, and some common phrases. They even signed a complete song, “A Million Dreams,” for their friends and family at the Friday showcase. One of the ASL campers said, “I was really happy to sign the song at the showcase for my friends and my mom. My favorite thing about ASL was learning the alphabet and how to sign my own name and my dog’s name. I suggest everyone take Ms. Mei’s class because it was so fun and they will learn a lot.”
Ms. Daly designed the curriculum herself and was excited to teach ASL to Bosque Summer students because she feels it is such a fascinating language and she wanted to inspire that same enthusiasm in her own students. She says, “It was a highlight for me just to see the kids so excited about learning something new…I hope they take away a new respect for the deaf community…and I hope they walked away from my class excited about ASL and interested in learning more.”
Adventures Are the Best Experiences
Bosque Summer is all about building your own adventure. Capoeira and ASL are just a couple of the courses our Bosque Summer campers were excited to participate in this year—campers also enjoyed building models, mixing up potions, digging for fossils, baking delicious goodies, climbing rock walls, dancing, and making music. Though the course offerings were diverse, they all shared the same goals of teaching children to challenge themselves to be the best they can be and to love learning—this is the philosophy that we practice at Bosque School everyday.
Great Summer Adventures Lead to Great Classroom Experiences
Kudos to all the Bosque Summer staff and a huge thank you to all the Bosque Summer families who helped make the summer of 2022 so wonderful. We hope to see you all next year! In fact, camp director Zach Lang says he’s already looking forward to meeting next year’s campers, “I feel like this summer was really amazing because we saw a lot of growth. It’s exciting to see that growth among the young community on campus and to show them what Bosque School is all about for years in the future.”