April 8, 2009 THE VILLADOM TIMES IV • Page 15 Peg L. Smith, CEO of the American Camp Association, endorses the recent public awareness for the importance of free play in the development of children. “ACA camps, for nearly 100 years, have provided children with the opportunity to play in a safe and nurturing environment. Our anecdotal and scientific research points to the positive effect camp has on the lives of children— offering a unique and valuable experience that allows kids to just be kids—providing a very special place where their mental, personal, emotional, and physical needs are nurtured.” The American Academy of Pediatrics recently published a report that warns that children are experiencing less and less imaginative free play. AAP concludes that free and unstructured play is healthy and, in fact, essential for helping children reach important social, emotional, and cognitive developmental milestones as well as helping them manage stress and become resilient. According to Tufts University child development expert Dr. David Elkind, the author of the groundbreaking books, The Hurried Child and All Grown Up and No Place to Go, American children seem to be in constant motion—their schedules packed with homework, chores, music lessons, and organized sports. With a lack of time for good, oldfashioned play for children, Dr. Elkind states in his book, “The Power of Play: How Spontaneous, Imaginative Activities Lead to Happier and Healthier Children,” that there can be health and psychological consequences. Dr. Elkind, keynote speaker for a recent American Camp Association National Conference, states that traditional summer camp is an oasis for children who are so focused on preparing for the future and have no time for enjoying the moment. “The traditional summer camp recognizes that play is a powerful form of learning that con- SCHOOLS & CAMPS Play thrives in the camp experience For more information about the American Camp Association, visit www.ACAcamps.org or www.CampParents. org. The American Camp Association works to preserve, promote, and enhance the camp experience for children and adults. ACA-accredited camp programs ensure that children are provided with a diversity of educational and developmentally challenging learning opportunities. There are over 2,400 ACA-accredited camps that meet up to 300 health and safety standards. For more information, visit www.ACAcamps.org. Pinnacle Learning Center tributes mightily to the child’s healthy physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development.” Smith continued, “We heartily agree with Dr. Elkind when he recommends to parents that more play should be added to our children’s lives—and we in the camp community revel in watching children discover their place in the world.” At the Ramapo Reformed Church Educational Building 109 West Ramapo Ave., Mahwah Conveniently located just off Route 17 Register for Summer 2009 7:30 AM - 6 PM M-F Flexible Hrs. Half and Full Day - 2½ - 6 Years Arts & Crafts, Games, Theme Projects, Music, Outdoor Water Fun Owner/Director/Teacher Maria Cancelosi NJ State Licensed Call 201-512-3313 ����������������������������������������������������������� Space available for Fall 2009 ������������������������������������� Infants, Toddler, Preschool and Kindergarten, Grades 1-6, Ages 6 weeks to 12 years A Truly Unique Montessori School • Unique Phonics Reading Program • Computers • Music • Foreign Language • 3 or 5 Half Days • Full Days 7am - 6pm • Fastrackids • Character Education • Parenting Seminars • Dance Academy CORE of the APPLE Summer Camp ���������������������������� �������������������������� ������������������������ ��������������������� ������������� ������������������� ������������ ��������������� • Daily Swimmming Lessons, Heated Pool designed for safety of young children • Sports/Organized Games • Arts & Crafts • Field Trips • Music/Dance • In House Events Call, visit and • Nature & Science compare the advantages gained for • Computers • Cooking your child... www.applemontessorischools.com 192 Ramapo Valley Rd. OAKLAND 201-337-0183 Please call for our other locations 973-696-9750 Nevins Rd. WAYNE 75 East Ramapo Valley Rd. MAHWAH 201-512-1141