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on March 14, 2012
Like all of the other, "The Night Before.." books, this book features an easy-to-read rhyme based loosely on The Night Before Christmas. In this story, a child attends a day amp and despite initial reluctance, enjoys camp by the conclusion. We have most of the other "night before" books, and purchased this one as a cutesy way to read to our 9 year old as he went off to camp. Obviously, it is intended for a younger audience, but our nine year old found very silly to think we purchased him a picture book! Lots of laughs! And since he has four younger brothers and sisters, this book will get a ton of use!
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on March 16, 2016
Natasha Wings’s “The Night Before Summer Camp” tells a friendly story about a boy named Rick who is not interested in going to summer camp. His mother pushes him to attend and finally with a few words of persuasion Rick decides to go. During the camp, Rick becomes worried that he will be lonely, he starts to miss his mom, asks to go home, and gets very nervous. However, after meeting a friend during lunchtime he becomes more comfortable with the camp. Through out the course of the book a sense of interest becomes more and more present. Wings uses similes, personification, rhyme, and imagery to get the reader more interested in the storyline. Similar to “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clarke Moore, an allusion is created as the beginning of the book is told with the same sequence and format.
The similes used in “The Night Before Summer Camp” depict a sense of humor and uniqueness that is coming from the author. For example on page 15 Wings writes, ‘”Kick your feet! Move your arms! Place your face in the water! Excellent, Rick! You swim like an otter.”’ This quote brings to show the exaggeration of how well Rick is swimming since he is clearly described as swimming like an otter. This quote also signifies humor because he is compared to an animal based on his actions, which can be appealing to children who especially own animals.
Wings frequently uses rhyme through out the book. The rhyme she uses creates an even flow of balance between the sentences and illustrations. For example on page 21 Wings writes, “Their eyes-how they twinkled! Their bobtails so twitchy! Their legs were so slender, while Rick’s were so itchy!” This quote presents words such as twinkled, twitchy, slender, and itchy to signify what is going on. The diction fits perfectly together with clear sense and the pictures signify a clear idea of the words used. This makes reading simple and understanding for children, like my 8 year old sister. She found that the sentence was understandable and unquestionable to what the author may have been trying to signify.
Wings uses personification through out the book and this literary device forms interest and a unique sense of creativity to the storyline. On page 24 Wings writes, ‘”Kim smiled and said, “Hey little Cub. I’m nervous, just like you. This is my very first job. I’m away from home, too. Last night I tossed and turned in my bed. I couldn’t get the jitters out of my head!” This quote shows how the camp counselor, Kim, describes Rick as a cub in reference to his size and age. What is very intriguing about this sentence is how honest and friendly Kim approaches Rick. This is suitable for children who may be leaving far away from their parents and home for a weekend trip. The sentence is very raw, connective, and realistic and the book may serve as comfort to what a child may be going through when they do leave home for whatever reason.
The imagery found in this book is interesting and realistic. These two factors play an important role in children’s literature. Since children are sensitive creatures, finding a book where the child is able to connect with the characters and place themselves in the storyline truly makes a book captivating. Wings is realistic on how she ascribed Rick to be. She uses child friendly ideas as she explains how Rick is worried, how much he misses his mom, how lonely he feels, and finally how much he enjoys swimming and dancing. These details place an emphasis on thought and interest for the reader.
The font used in this book is very clear to the reader. It’s bold and black and it does not take away attention from the illustrations. This brings me to my next point, the illustrations. The pictures are very suitable with the sentences. They flow right in and the colors are gender neutral. Slight tints of purple, pink, blue, and green are used. The content is well written and favors to an audience of children who may need a book to keep them satisfied and comfortable if they are leaving home. It can also serve as a realistic and connective storyline about a boy who overcomes his worries with happiness in the end.
One activity idea for teachers/parents who may be reading this book to their children is to create a small craft project. Since the book is based on summer camp, the reader can expect greenery and outside related activities. The teacher/parent can draw or print out a sheet of a tree with large leaves. On each leaf the child can write how they would feel about leaving home. This activity will get the child to think about their appreciation for their parents and home. The child is also able to visualize how Rick may have been feeling and this places a sense of psychology with the emotions that may take place during the journey. Another activity idea is to have the parents discuss how they would feel if their children left home. This reflection allows children to view more than just their perspective and emotions but their parents as well. The teacher can send out a paper explaining the assignment to the parents if it is a school related activity. If the activity takes place at home, the parents can open and honestly discuss with their children their emotions on having them leave home. Two discussion question ideas for children reading this book are: How would you feel if you had to spend a weekend without mom and dad, and what makes your home so special and valuable to you?
Two related books similar to “The Night Before Summer Camp” include “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clarke Moore and “I Love You Near and Far” by Marjorie Blain Parker. “The Night Before Christmas” is sequenced and formatted similarly to Wings’s book. The beginnings of both books are illustrated very similarly. The colors contrast with one another as the hues of the dark night and families being close to one another are depicted. “I Love You Near and Far” shares similar ideas to Wings’s book with the a sense of emotions one may be feeling when they leave their home. Whether it’s because family members move away, grandparents pass, or one parent gets deployed the idea of separation is exhausting and painful to any child. Both books signify these emotions and describe them in a realistic manner.
One website teachers can refer to in conjunction to the book is a craft website that lists creative activities for summer camp that teachers can try with their students. This idea gives children the realistic thought of what summer camp may be like and allows them to compare reality to fiction. Website example: [...]. A website that parents can refer to in conjunction to the book is one that accompanies the emotions a child may endure before leaving home. This gives parents the necessary preparation for what they should expect if the situation arises that their children are to leave home. Website example: [...]. Two examples of websites children can refer to in conjunction to the book include: [...] and [...]. Both of these websites inform children about the environment and the animals that may surround them if they wee to actually attend a summer camp. The environment and animals listed are similar to what Rick talks about while he attended camp.
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on June 30, 2012
The night before Summer Day Camp opens all the counselors are working hard to get everything ready. The canoes are ready for the campers to paddle in. And while the counselors are working hard, and other soon-to-be campers are easily dreaming, Rick is wide awake, worried. The morning of the first day of camp, Rick is afraid for he doesn't know a single soul at camp. Reluctantly, he gets on the bus to day camp. Right away Rick meets Counselor Kim who teaches the campers to swim. After swimming, Rick goes on nature trail walks, make sail boats,and even see some forest animals. But Rick is still homesick. After learning that his counselor is also nervous about being at camp and away from home Rick learns he is not alone, enjoying the rest of the week!

While many children are excited to go to camp, there are quite a few who are nervous - they don't know what to expect and many times they don't know anyone. Natasha Wing has done a wonderful job in harnessing these emotions in Rick. Despite Rick's initial reluctance, he gives camp a try anyways. I like how Natasha Wing even makes something so simple as trying a key example, showing that trying something could end up being a wonderful thing.

The Night Before Summer Camp is a very easy and quick read, while being applicable to any child. Natasha Wing uses simple rhyming that are wonderfully paired with simple yet fun illustrations by Mindy Pierce. For any child that is nervous about going camping, away from their parents, this is a fantastic book to get them excited!
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on January 28, 2013
My daughter really enjoyed this book and many others by Natasha Wing. Her stories are entertaining, engaging, and enjoyed by my biggest critic. I would recommend books by this author for children 4-6 years of age. Great Book!
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on March 16, 2016
Natasha Wings’s “The Night Before Summer Camp” tells a friendly story about a boy named Rick who is not interested in going to summer camp. His mother pushes him to attend and finally with a few words of persuasion Rick decides to go. During the camp, Rick becomes worried that he will be lonely, he starts to miss his mom, asks to go home, and gets very nervous. However, after meeting a friend during lunchtime he becomes more comfortable with the camp. Through out the course of the book a sense of interest becomes more and more present. Wings uses similes, personification, rhyme, and imagery to get the reader more interested in the storyline. Similar to “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clarke Moore, an allusion is created as the beginning of the book is told with the same sequence and format.
The similes used in “The Night Before Summer Camp” depict a sense of humor and uniqueness that is coming from the author. For example on page 15 Wings writes, ‘”Kick your feet! Move your arms! Place your face in the water! Excellent, Rick! You swim like an otter.”’ This quote brings to show the exaggeration of how well Rick is swimming since he is clearly described as swimming like an otter. This quote also signifies humor because he is compared to an animal based on his actions, which can be appealing to children who especially own animals.
Wings frequently uses rhyme through out the book. The rhyme she uses creates an even flow of balance between the sentences and illustrations. For example on page 21 Wings writes, “Their eyes-how they twinkled! Their bobtails so twitchy! Their legs were so slender, while Rick’s were so itchy!” This quote presents words such as twinkled, twitchy, slender, and itchy to signify what is going on. The diction fits perfectly together with clear sense and the pictures signify a clear idea of the words used. This makes reading simple and understanding for children, like my 8 year old sister. She found that the sentence was understandable and unquestionable to what the author may have been trying to signify.
Wings uses personification through out the book and this literary device forms interest and a unique sense of creativity to the storyline. On page 24 Wings writes, ‘”Kim smiled and said, “Hey little Cub. I’m nervous, just like you. This is my very first job. I’m away from home, too. Last night I tossed and turned in my bed. I couldn’t get the jitters out of my head!” This quote shows how the camp counselor, Kim, describes Rick as a cub in reference to his size and age. What is very intriguing about this sentence is how honest and friendly Kim approaches Rick. This is suitable for children who may be leaving far away from their parents and home for a weekend trip. The sentence is very raw, connective, and realistic and the book may serve as comfort to what a child may be going through when they do leave home for whatever reason.
The imagery found in this book is interesting and realistic. These two factors play an important role in children’s literature. Since children are sensitive creatures, finding a book where the child is able to connect with the characters and place themselves in the storyline truly makes a book captivating. Wings is realistic on how she ascribed Rick to be. She uses child friendly ideas as she explains how Rick is worried, how much he misses his mom, how lonely he feels, and finally how much he enjoys swimming and dancing. These details place an emphasis on thought and interest for the reader.
The font used in this book is very clear to the reader. It’s bold and black and it does not take away attention from the illustrations. This brings me to my next point, the illustrations. The pictures are very suitable with the sentences. They flow right in and the colors are gender neutral. Slight tints of purple, pink, blue, and green are used. The content is well written and favors to an audience of children who may need a book to keep them satisfied and comfortable if they are leaving home. It can also serve as a realistic and connective storyline about a boy who overcomes his worries with happiness in the end.
One activity idea for teachers/parents who may be reading this book to their children is to create a small craft project. Since the book is based on summer camp, the reader can expect greenery and outside related activities. The teacher/parent can draw or print out a sheet of a tree with large leaves. On each leaf the child can write how they would feel about leaving home. This activity will get the child to think about their appreciation for their parents and home. The child is also able to visualize how Rick may have been feeling and this places a sense of psychology with the emotions that may take place during the journey. Another activity idea is to have the parents discuss how they would feel if their children left home. This reflection allows children to view more than just their perspective and emotions but their parents as well. The teacher can send out a paper explaining the assignment to the parents if it is a school related activity. If the activity takes place at home, the parents can open and honestly discuss with their children their emotions on having them leave home. Two discussion question ideas for children reading this book are: How would you feel if you had to spend a weekend without mom and dad, and what makes your home so special and valuable to you?
Two related books similar to “The Night Before Summer Camp” include “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clarke Moore and “I Love You Near and Far” by Marjorie Blain Parker. “The Night Before Christmas” is sequenced and formatted similarly to Wings’s book. The beginnings of both books are illustrated very similarly. The colors contrast with one another as the hues of the dark night and families being close to one another are depicted. “I Love You Near and Far” shares similar ideas to Wings’s book with the a sense of emotions one may be feeling when they leave their home. Whether it’s because family members move away, grandparents pass, or one parent gets deployed the idea of separation is exhausting and painful to any child. Both books signify these emotions and describe them in a realistic manner.
One website teachers can refer to in conjunction to the book is a craft website that lists creative activities for summer camp that teachers can try with their students. This idea gives children the realistic thought of what summer camp may be like and allows them to compare reality to fiction. Website example: [...]. A website that parents can refer to in conjunction to the book is one that accompanies the emotions a child may endure before leaving home. This gives parents the necessary preparation for what they should expect if the situation arises that their children are to leave home. Website example: [...]. Two examples of websites children can refer to in conjunction to the book include: [...] and [...]. Both of these websites inform children about the environment and the animals that may surround them if they wee to actually attend a summer camp. The environment and animals listed are similar to what Rick talks about while he attended camp.
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on July 28, 2011
Love the "Night Before" series by Natasha Wing. A fun series and a definite must have for any child's library. Creative writing. Children love the quick pace of the poetry style. Look for the other books...they're all great.

I've got these books: The Night Before the Night Before Christmas
The Night Before Thanksgiving
The Night Before Halloween
The Night Before Summer Vacation
The Night Before Summer Camp
The Night Before Mother's Day
The Night Before Easter
The Night Before St. Patrick's Day
The Night Before Valentine's Day
The Night Before New Year's
The Night Before First Grade
The Night Before Kindergarten
The Night Before Preschool
The Night Before the 100th Day of School
The Night Before the New Baby
The Night Before the Tooth Fairy

Worth investing in the whole collection. Holidays and special occasions are big in my family so I'll always pull these books out to read again and again.
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on June 2, 2012
The night before Summer Day Camp opens all the counselors are working hard to get everything ready. The canoes are ready for the campers to paddle in. And while the counselors are working hard, and other soon-to-be campers are easily dreaming, Rick is wide awake, worried. The morning of the first day of camp, Rick is afraid for he doesn't know a single soul at camp. Reluctantly, he gets on the bus to day camp. Right away Rick meets Counselor Kim who teaches the campers to swim. After swimming, Rick goes on nature trail walks, make sail boats,and even see some forest animals. But Rick is still homesick. After learning that his counselor is also nervous about being at camp and away from home Rick learns he is not alone, enjoying the rest of the week!

While many children are excited to go to camp, there are quite a few who are nervous - they don't know what to expect and many times they don't know anyone. Natasha Wing has done a wonderful job in harnessing these emotions in Rick. Despite Rick's initial reluctance, he gives camp a try anyways. I like how Natasha Wing even makes something so simple as trying a key example, showing that trying something could end up being a wonderful thing.

The Night Before Summer Camp is a very easy and quick read, while being applicable to any child. Natasha Wing uses simple rhyming that are wonderfully paired with simple yet fun illustrations by Mindy Pierce. For any child that is nervous about going camping, away from their parents, this is a fantastic book to get them excited!
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on May 20, 2013
this book was too much fun!!! I took it to Kids Camp with me so in case it rained then we would have a backup plan.
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on April 1, 2014
I wanted this book so much and I was so disappointed when it arrived! It's a great book but it was ruined by the time I got it. It was in a bubble envelope and mangled. I don't know what condition it was in before the envelope...
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on February 6, 2013
Love the books all great illustrations, great read, my preschooler and 2 year old look forward to me reading it to them nightly !
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