The beginning of orientation is always the culmination of a tremendous amount of planning, and feels a little like Christmas for us year rounders at Illahee. The guys have put the finishing touches on the facility and it sparkles and shines…Gretchen and Laurie eagerly anticipate the arrival of all of the GREAT Illahee girls they have hired to make this the Best Summer Ever. Orientation schedules are published. Great smells start to waft from the kitchen, and excitement abounds. This year, our long time friend, Bob Ditter, a nationally renown child psychologist from Boston, presented our opening sessions, meeting with senior staff and the full staff so that we are all up to date on the latest research and techniques working with girls. Bob presented ideas for effective communication with charity, clarity, brevity and levity…working with co-counselors, common pitfalls like “talking too much,” getting over-emotional, “picking up the rope,” catching kids doing things right, using “and” instead of “but,” leaving sarcasm at home, and more…things that may seem like common sense, but they are always good reminders in the camp world, especially in a kind place like Illahee.
Before the entire staff arrived yesterday, specialists gathered over the weekend for lifeguard training, ropes training, whitewater training, and driver training. There is a lot to go over, but we can tell you that we have the BEST staff ever, and this summer is going to be GREAT! Can’t wait to see our June girls!