Camp Grows Lifelong Learners

With the first week of January behind us, we are all settling into a new year with ambitions and a peaceful, quiet month to work on them. In my house, we are working on a goal of reading more in 2022. We’ve set up a system to help us reach this goal – using the GoodReads app to track our reading, utilizing our library cards and the Libby app to get access to more books, and checking in with friends with similar goals. It has me thinking about how much I value my identity as a lifelong learner – a quality fostered by camp – someone open to new goals, learning new things, and always working on a growth mindset.

One of my favorite books, Mindset by Carol Dweck, delves deep into fixed vs. growth mindsets. A fixed mindset makes us believe that our talents and abilities are “carved in stone” – we only have a certain amount of intelligence, ability, a certain personality. But the growth mindset tells us that our efforts, passions, and help from others overtake our natural abilities. Dr. Dweck’s research shows us that while we can always retrain ourselves, our mindset is often formed very early in our lives. The people, the ideas, and the opportunities we surround ourselves with can make or break this mindset.

This is where camp comes in! Camp provides the opportunity to continually challenge ourselves – campers and staff alike – to try new things, build our skills, and learn from new perspectives. Our campers understand the value and thrill (and, in all honesty, nervousness) of trying something brand new, and the bravery of attempting the next level. Many of our activities at Runoia feature levels that encourage our campers to build skills and aspire to the highest achievement – maybe American archer, windsurfing queen, or advanced equestrian. Campers who return year after year often spend each summer building toward these goals with the help of a growth mindset, some serious tenacity, and an awesome support system.

Camp challenges our staff members – from first-year counselors to admin who have been here for decades – to grow, as well. What a challenge it was for me to show up to camp in June of 2018 not knowing a soul – and for our international counselors, add on the bravery of navigating a new country!

Our campers and staff benefit from this mindset even after passing through Runoia’s gates – back to the ‘real world’ – at summer’s end. One of our stellar staff members, Mackenzie, talked to me about learning to ski as an adult – something I’ve also been tackling in the past year. So excited to learn, she started slow “with pizza skis and falls every few hundred feet.” But a growth mindset tells Mackenzie that even after hard falls, she has the ability to learn and grow: “After big wipeouts that knocked the wind out of me I’d sit and catch my breath wishing I learned at the age of 3 like it seemed everyone else on the mountain had. After studying the way others moved, advice from friends who ski, and a beginners lesson, I learned new skills one at a time.” Mackenzie closed out our conversation with some serious growth-mindset attitude: “I continue to learn one step at a time and remind myself of the privilege it is to ski regardless of starting age. Now I know that there is truly no ‘mastering’ a skill because it can always get better from there.”

Here’s to new things, more books, and growth in 2022.

Hardy Girls Webinars – Education and Training for a Great Start This Autumn

The Hardy Girls Healthy Women Training Institute welcomes you back after a marvelous summer! Check out our first webinar series of the year:

The Hardiness Webinar Series! 

October 7th, 2014 – 1pm-2pm
Introduction to Hardy Girls Healthy Women


New to Hardy Girls Healthy Women? Join HGHW President Kelli McCannell as she discusses everything you need to know about HGHW!  McCannell will give an overview of the history, its incredible researched-based programming, and everything HGHW has to offer girls and the adults that work with them!

October 24th, 2014 – 3:30pm-4pm
Allies In Action: Girls Advisory Board (GAB) Panel


What is GAB and what do they do? Join Girls Advisory Board members as they discuss their experiences on the Girls Advisory Board. GAB will talk about the importance of youth engaging in feminist activism and how adults can better support and empower girls.

November 5th, 2014 – 2pm-4pm
From Adversaries To Allies: Building Girls’ Coalition Groups
($100 – Includes curriculum – GREAT FOR EDUCATORS!)

Are you ready to take a new approach in your work with girls? Want to find a way to address girl fighting, teach media literacy skills, and empower girls to change their world for the better? Hardy Girls Healthy Women and its acclaimed girls’ group curriculum From Adversaries to Allies: A Curriculum for Change has been turning adversaries into allies in middle schools for years. Our research-based guide and its supplement Becoming a Muse brings girls together in the face of a culture that tells them girl-fighting and bullying is the norm. This pairs nicely with our “How To Get Buy–In” webinar on Nov. 25th!

November 12th, 2014 – 2pm-3pm
Summer Sisters: Empowering Girls at Summer Camp


For many girls, summer camp truly is a magical time where they can “just be me.” But why is that? Who are these girls the rest of the year? And how can we help them hold onto the magic of camp all year long? Hardy Girls Healthy Women created an exclusive activity guide Summer Sisters: A Guide to Coalition Building at Camp & Beyond just for camp professionals and other staff to help find the answers to these important questions. All participants in this webinar will receive a free activity from the curricula and information on how to train staff and roll out these activities at your camp or summer program.

November 19th, 2014 – 2pm-3pm

Adventures Girls: If She Can See It, She Can Be It

($40 – Includes Adventure Girl Program Guide)

Do you want to inspire girls in your community and help them defy gender stereotypes? Build an Adventure Girls program at your school or organization! Adventure Girls is an interactive program for girls in grades 2nd—6th grade that provides girls with the opportunity to meet women who are defying gender stereotypes and challenging notions of what a girl or woman “should” do or want to be. It models the idea “if she sees it, she can be it.” Dana Bushee and Jessica Leighton will cover the origins of the program, the impact on girls, and what we’ve learned from our 10 years of experience.

November 25th, 2014 -1pm-2pm

How to Get Buy-In: Making The Case for Girl Groups
($30- Goes great with Girls’ Coalition Group Webinar on 11/5!)

This webinar will share strategies on how to get institutional buy-in for Girls Coalition Groups from experiences in schools, training muses, and working as a muse. Christine Bright and Lida Holst will discuss avenues on how to effectively build girl groups, how to sustain the work with administrators and parents, and how to partner with girls to create activism. Register today!


For further descriptions of each webinar (and for registration) go to: