Workshop 6th World Congress on Positive Psychology 2019

If Camp Counselors Can Teach It… A Camp Director’s Insights Into Rapid-Training Positive Psychology Initiatives (#132)

Ken Schainman 1
  1. Symposium Consulting Group, Philadelphia, PA, United States

Summer camp presents a unique opportunity – and unique challenges – for introducing and spreading Positive Psychology principles. At camp, educators, counselors, and students across multiple school districts have the potential to teach, learn, and deeply internalize skills like Growth Mindset, Resilience, and Savoring in a multi-week experience. They also face specific challenges. Camp counselors are typically young, non-teaching professionals whose primary focus is on learning to lead children, not promoting Positive Psychology. Moreover, camps have competing logistical priorities, parent clientele who value physical and creative skills over flourishing skills, and inadequate training time.

This workshop focuses on how camps can create a rapid, “train-as-you go” Positive Psychology program that aligns the incentives of teachers, staff, children, and parents. It will share insights learned from successfully implementing such a program for a camp of over 1,000 children, with 500 (often reluctant) camp staff trained in just two days. It will also highlight how these lessons can be leveraged for Positive Psychology initiatives in other organizations.

  • Select one of the following conference tracks which best describes your submission area: Positive Education