What Is Better: Using A Mother’s Helper Or Summer Camp?

With the kids out from school, it's time to think childcare options! Check out our tips for choosing between a mother's helper or summer camp for your kids.

As school winds down, you may be wondering which will be better for your family – Using A Mother’s Helper Or Summer Camp for kids this year. There are great benefits to both of these options, and it truly varies from family to family what is the best choice. We have come up with a few things to consider when making this choice for you and your children.

Related: Parenting Tips: Should You Choose a Structured Summer Camp or Sibling Camp?

What Is Better: Using A Mother’s Helper Or Summer Camp?

Mother’s Helper:

  • Familiar surroundings in your home. For younger children this is important to create security and limit separation anxiety
  • More personalized attention. Children with developmental delays or who tend to be sensitive about various issues do well in environments with more one on one interaction that a mother’s helper would provide.
  • Easy to control exposure to foods, activities and entertainment. If your child has food allergies or limitations with activities it helps to have someone who knows these things and is prepared to handle them on a daily basis. This is also good for families who restrict television, music or other entertainment that may be brought up in a summer camp environment.
  • Loving bond that brings comfort. With a mother’s helper, your child won’t feel left out or alone when apart from their parents. The loving one on one relationship helps them feel secure.

Summer Camp:

  • Interaction with peers. This is especially great for children who are homeschooled or have a small circle of peers. Meeting new people, and interacting with them on a daily basis will help build their confidence and people skills. Interaction with peers can be great for those who may generally be shy.
  • Learning life skills. Everything from how to build a fire to making their bed each day can be taught at summer camp. Life skills are part of the day to day coming and going at summer camp and a great way to help your kids learn in a natural environment where everyone else is going along with instructions.
  • Creating more independence. Being “alone” at summer camp can create an independent spirit in the child who tends to cling a bit more to their parent or siblings. Being able to care for basic daily things like brushing their teeth, showering, picking up after themselves and similar will give them some confidence and independence they may not feel at home.

Related: 5 Tips on Choosing Best Summer Camps for Kids

Making the decision between a mother’s helper and summer camp this year is truly dependent upon your individual family and child needs. Every child is different in what will help them to thrive. Think about what your family needs and your children’s personalities as you make the right decision for your family.

Did you already make this choice? Which do you prefer: a mother’s helper or summer camp?

25 thoughts on “What Is Better: Using A Mother’s Helper Or Summer Camp?”

  1. This is a great post and question for sure. I do know it somewhat depends on the child. In some cases it would be better for child and mother to be separated to show the child independence. I know it was always hard for me to be away from my kids when I was in the Army Reserves every year. Thanks for sharing

  2. I use to love camps when I was a kid! They were the best part of summer. I totally wanna have my daughter do that kinda thing when she’s old enough!

  3. Summer camp for me. A mother’s helper would still be in close proximity to me when I am working at home, and I would have to get my little self involved in what they were doing. Summer camp also helps my children develop important social skills and learn to interact with diverse groups of children and adults in authority. They get a chance to build new friendships!

  4. I think it should be a good mix of both. Summer Camp would give kids a new experience that they could share with their friends when they’re back to school and helping out mom at home is also a nice thing to do. It’s gonna give them a chance to bond and spend more time.

  5. I’m at home with my kiddos so we do some summer camp type activities, but save money on hiring a helper of registering for an actual camp. These are good things to consider (depending on each child) for parents who are trying to decide between the two!

  6. We didn’t use either when our kids were younger. Our daughter is 10 years younger than her brothers, and she spends 2 weeks at grandma’s house each summer which is great! I work. My hubby works. Then we can vacation together. :)

  7. Doreen Lamoureux

    Great points for both options. I really loved going away to summer camp. Opens you up to new adventures. I think that is important too.

  8. I think it depends on the type of help you need. I personally love the idea of summer camp, but when the kids are home a helper would be great as well. I mean the kids can learn and do so much at camp, but with 4 kids that gets pricey.

  9. When my daughter was younger we sent her to several summer camps. She loved them! She made a lot of friends and got to do a lot of things she wouldn’t have gotten to do at home.

  10. I’ve been lucky enough to stay home with my son and have never had to deal with this til this summer. Son has chosen to take on a week long internship at an University I do believe I will be having separation anxiety that week.

  11. Robin (Masshole Mommy)

    I stay at home with my kids so I don’t have to make choices like this :) I want to be with my boys.

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