How To Do Life

Fresh ideas about career and personal issues

The Best Thing You Could Do This Summer?

Surprisingly easily, you can create an amazing experience for kids this summer.

There are camps for sports, arts, science, and religion. Why not a camp that focuses on improving thinking skills, a Camp Think?

It could contain such activities as:

  • A camp-wide effort to develop a plan to solve a societal problem, for example, substance abuse. The resulting White Paper could be submitted to an appropriate local, state, and federal official.
  • A debate on such issues as: Should taxes be raised? Soda banned? Marijuana legalized?
  • Contests: Which team (and/or individual) can make the robot that wins a 10-yard dash? A rocket that flies highest with parts that cost under $50? Develop the best idea for a reinvented elementary school? Win a logic-problem quiz show? Create the best skit? Museum exhibit? Develop the best improvement for next year’s camp?
  • Because life isn’t just about thinking, there would be time for songfests, talent shows, storytelling, and yes, even traditional camp arts and crafts—I still fondly remember learning how to make a lanyard using the diamond and box stitches.

None of these require fancy facilities. You could have a small day camp in your home, a spare room in a church, or in your apartment complex’s community room.

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If you’re looking for something to do this summer, you could do far worse than run a one- or two-week summer day camp for at least a small number of kids.

Marty Nemko was named “The Bay Area’s Best Career Coach” by the San Francisco Bay Guardian and he enjoys a 96 percent client-satisfaction rate. In addition to the articles here on, many more of Marty Nemko's writings are archived on Of his seven books, the most relevant to readers of this blog is How to Do Life: What They Didn’t Teach You in School. Marty Nemko's  bio is on Wikipedia.

Marty Nemko is a career and personal coach based in Oakland, Ca. and the author of 7 books. 

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