How excited do your kids get about the school holidays? Mine start getting into a frenzy about a week before they break up, planning what they will do, fantasizing about staying in their PJs all day and plotting the secret dens they will create. But a couple of days in and they actively seek adventure and want to get out and about. So when Barracudas Activity Camps contacted us to see if Elodie and Finlay (aged 7 and 9) would like to try out an Activity Day during the Easter Holidays – I knew they would jump at the chance!
Barracudas Activity Camps are held at over 43 locations throughout the South East, normally at schools with lovely outdoor space and impressive facilities such as the one we attended at the Independent School Farringtons. They provide day camps for all of the holidays for children aged 4.5 until 14 years old so it’s perfect childcare for working parents but as there is an option to do as few or many days as you like, they also provide an interesting outdoor learning experience for kids.
Booking my two onto camp was easy peasy. You just call up or book online and then you are given a security code and an account to use in the future too, then you get helpful emails to remind you of information needed for your camp.
As it grew nearer to Elodie and Finlay’s camp day, we watched a few of the videos Barracudas have online which are really helpful, particularly for nervous children or those worrying about attending camp. They go through what to expect when signing in and registering on the day as well as what to bring and what to wear. These videos were brilliant at explaining how the day would be structured and each location has it’s own video so you can familiarise younger kids with the camp they will be attending.
On the day of their camp, my two woke up and were dressed quicker than on a school day – they were so excited! When we arrived, registration was really easy and quick (this is a God-send if you’re running off to work) -the children were taken by smiley and happy staff (always a good sign!) to choose their activities for the day.
I was greeted by two very happy but completely exhausted kids at the end of the day. They tripped over each other with their words trying to competitively tell me about their days. We had thought they might be in the same group and they had plotted on the way there about how they’d ‘stick together’ but they were split into age related groups – I was relieved to see that they were both fine and had loved spending the day with people their own age. They were full of the stories of their new found friends at bedtime and I think it’s so important for kids to try new activities and experience different learning experiences as well as meeting new faces and learning how to make friends! Despite the iffy weather that day, I was pleased to hear they’d spent lots of lovely time outside – Finlay had loved the outdoor games they’d played such as ‘Catch the Flag’.
Barracudas offers the kids a choice of activities each day, which I think is unusual for a kid’s camp but a totally brilliant feature. It’s lovely for kid’s to have ownership of what they do in their day and ensures variety if your child is attending across a number of days/ weeks. Elodie chose Go-Karting and Fencing and Finlay chose Swimming and Archery but alongside this they also had an Arts and Crafts and Rounders Session. Their day had been really action packed which they loved. In Elodie’s words ‘just as we were thinking what we were doing next – we were whisked off to something new’. The range of activities offered is really impressive – certainly, we did not think they would have the opportunity to try out adventurous activities such as Archery and Fencing. Elodie was very taken with the fencing and gave us a mini demonstration at home!
For a real day of adventure, a chance to try new things and a day that builds kid’s independence – you cannot get any better than Barracudas Activity Camps. Our two would have attended for the whole holidays if they could and haven’t stopped talking about the different things they experienced, often speaking as if they were members of some secret club “mummy, you wouldn’t understand this riddle, I learnt it at Barracudas………” or “yeah, that was the way we did it at Barracudas!!”
Elodie and Finlay loved the staff and loved the activities and enjoyed meeting their new found friends and I couldn’t wish for any more than that for holiday childcare. It even quelled our kid’s spirit of adventure seeking in the holidays (for a day or so at least!)
Chance to Try……
Barracudas are kindly offering £10 off when you book a week at camp throughout all the holidays in 2018 using the code TT2018 at the checkout!
*We were kindly offered a try out day for free in exchange for a review, all words and thoughts are my own!*