Lafayette School Corporation staff and students complete first ever social and emotional learning summer camp

Lafayette School Corporation's new summer camp is kicking off for dozens of students this week. They're finding fun ways to learn about handling their emotions.

Posted: Jul 10, 2021 5:20 AM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) -- Dozens of Lafayette staff and students are spent Tuesday, Jul. 6 - Friday, Jul. 9 focusing on friends, fun, and feelings. The corporation has kicked off its first-ever social and emotional learning summer camp.

Meditation, Tai Chi, arts, and dog therapy are just a few of the many ways Lafayette School Corporation staff and students are learning these skills. This social and emotional learning summer camp is serving kids from first to eighth grade. The goal is to find positive ways to deal with different emotions.

"It's just helping students just know what they're feeling and why they're feeling it and I've learned as a teacher, if students are going through something, they're not in a place where they can learn," said Lindsay Nunan, a 7th-grade language arts teacher at Tecumseh Junior High.

She's been helping organize this camp for the past two years. With all these various hands-on activities, she's hoping students will find what works for them.

"One strategy that might work really well for my mental health maybe doesn't work really well for somebody else and vice-versa," said Nunan. "We want the kids to know that they can kind of pick and choose different things that work out really well for them."

Nunan is also hoping it breaks the stigma of what it looks like to take care of your mental health.

"You can play while helping mental health, it's not supposed to be this serious somber thing, it's not just like therapy, you can play and have fun and check-in with yourself," said Nunan.

"I thought it was going to be like a bunch of exercises like camp, but it's actually been really, really fun," said Madelyn Vandervate, a 5th-grade student at Lafayette Sunnyside Intermediate.

"I just think about these kids going into the workforce someday and having all these tools," said Nunan. "Like, yes all these memories and such a fun week but I just really hope they walk away with lots of tools and strategies."

This camp included 65 students and 13 teachers. Teachers spent this school year choosing students they felt could benefit most from this camp but all students were welcomed to attend.

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