Tag: Performing Arts
Music and performing arts are an important part of the fabric of Camp North Star in Poland, Maine. From singing in the dining hall, to preparing for the camp musical, to learning how to play the guitar, to performing in your cabin’s Lip Sync Contest performance, there are numerous opportunities for campers to gain an appreciation of music.
Camp North Star’s elective program allows campers with an interest in music and performing arts to choose from an array of activities that includes dance, music, theater and signing. These classes are tools that can be used for campers to express themselves in a way that written or spoken word doesn’t allow them to do. Dance classes give campers an artistic outlet to do what they love, and can create a strong sense of self-confidence. Music classes present campers with a chance to explore music as a way of self-expression, and has provides numerous benefits for the growing minds of youth.
• Stress Relief – playing music brings your energy and focus into a positive activity, which can help alleviate stress. Those reduced stress levels can help get your blood pressure and heart rate down to a healthy level.
• Exercise – Playing an instrument naturally leads to increased physical activity. Whether you’re playing the piano, guitar, strings, or a wind instrument, you’re using your arm and back muscles to play and/or hold up your instrument. And if you play the drums, you even get to do some cardio.
• Coordination – Using your fingers, hands, and feet in a rhythmic manner for a sustained amount of time, while also being conscious of playing the correct tones, can be a challenge for even the most coordinated people. Over time though, playing music refines your motor skills that go beyond the hand-eye.
• Self-Expression – Whether you’re writing your own piece of music or playing someone else’s, music allows you to express yourself in new ways. You also get to be creative when choosing your own unique style and genre.
• Making friends – Whether you use music as an icebreaker when meeting new people, or as a way to actually meet new people – playing in a choir, band, or dance company – music is a great way to make new friends.
At Camp North Star, another benefit of music and performing arts is that it’s also a great vehicle to help create memorable moments. Because music plays such an important part of the North Star experience, it is at the centerpiece of some of our most popular evening activities and special events. Campfires are all about signing and skits. Sign Out is the culmination of several days of practicing your song with several cabins. Dances at the end of each session are always fun evenings with your friends. These are all memories that stay with us long after the camp season has ended.
Camp North Star’s elective based program allows our campers to create their activity schedule each week from over 100 choices in athletics, outdoors, waterfront, enrichment, performing arts and fine arts. The Arts program…from ceramics to culinary arts, stained glass to sculpture and dance to drumming…gives campers the opportunity to express their creativity. And creativity is just one of the many skills campers learn from studying and participating in the arts. There are several other benefits that campers receive from being involved in an art class at Camp North Star.
Confidence – The skills campers gain through our performing arts classes not only train them how to persuasively deliver a message, but also builds the confidence they need to step on stage and perform. Theater training gives campers practice stepping out of their comfort zone and allows them to make mistakes and learn from them. North Star campers can participate in classes that include dance, improv, drumming, guitar, and the camp musicals. Last summer the musicals were Shrek and Lion King.
Problem Solving – Artistic creations are born through the solving of problems. How do I turn a pile of clay into a vase? How do I depict a specific emotion through a hip hop dance performance? How will my character in the camp musical react in this scene? Without even being aware, campers that participate in the arts are consistently being challenged to solve problems which develops children’s skills in reasoning and understanding.
Receiving Constructive Criticism – Hearing constructive feedback about a performance or piece of artwork is a typical part of any arts instruction. Through this process, our campers learn that feedback is part of learning and it is not meant to be a personal attack. Rather, campers learn that constructive criticism helps them improve and learn.
Dedication – Campers spend 5 hour per week in each of their classes. It is common for campers in art classes to use their free time period for extra practice time in a performing arts class or additional time to fine tune or finish an arts project. This type of time commitment helps campers to develop an association between dedication and accomplishment.
Perseverance – When a camper tries to play the guitar for the first time, they know they are not ready to join a band just yet. The first attempt at the pottery wheel rarely results in a symmetrical vase. However, with the help of our teachers who offers the proper guidance and direction, our campers learn the skills and techniques to play a few chords on the guitar and to create that vase. In an increasingly competitive world, where children are being asked to continually develop new skills, perseverance is essential to achieving success.
These benefits our campers learn through art classes complement the 21st century life skills that we emphasize in an intentional way every day at camp. And focusing on essential life skills a vital part of the overall experience at Camp North Star.