Position: Summer Counselor
Dates of Employment: 6/20/13 – 8/20/13
ABOUT BEAM CAMP
Beam is a summer camp in Strafford, NH for the fine and manual arts where each summer campers aged 7-17 collaborate on a spectacular project. Our mission is to help kids explore what it means to make things with their own bodies and brains and how that kind of creativity is relevant and applicable to everything in their lives. They transform ideas into artifacts and personal achievement into community success. They also have a lot of fun.
The centerpiece of the program is the Beam Project. Each summer Beam commissions two unique large-scale collaborative endeavors (one or each of two camp sessions), ranging from the conceptual to the structural, that Campers and Staff produce and enjoy. Teams of Campers guided by the staff work on different aspects of the Project each morning.
Campers also participate in Domains, are afternoon activities designed and led by Beam Staff and Domain Guests (one-week visitors). Each Domain is a unique and in-depth, hands-on, discovery activity in the arts, sciences, athletic or cultural fields where Campers make something or learn something new. Domains consist of at least three 2.5 hour sessions. With an activity break in between.
Beam has two lakes and sits within a 750 acre conservation reserve of mountain and forest. Among Beam’s resources are a well-equipped wood shop, digital lab and art/ceramics studio, basketball court, two large athletic fields and outdoor fire pit.
Each Beam Counselor lives in a cabin with another Counselor and 8-12 Campers. The Counselor’s primary responsibility is the well-being of the Campers. Counselors make sure that the Campers are safe and feel safe at all times. In order to ensure the well-being of their Campers, Counselors provide structure for their cabin. Counselors ensure that the cabin’s atmosphere is, above all else, supportive and respectful. Counselors help their Campers maintain a clean living environment and healthy personal habits.
Each morning, Counselors help small Camper workgroups called Waves in accomplishing specific tasks related to the Beam Project. Within these tasks, the Counselor’s responsibilities are to maintain a safe work station, to keep their Wave organized and focused, and to be personally engaged with the activity. Work on past projects has ranged widely, including everything from design, carpentry and building on through printmaking, costuming, drawing, painting, sculpting, and digital work; while the Counselor can always expect to be actively participating, he or she needn’t have preexisting skill in these crafts but any relevant experience is a plus!
Counselors may lead and/or assist in the running of Domains. Domains seek to produce specific, individual outcomes or identifiable individual contributions (a short movie, a solar-powered robot, a performance set to droning black metal in which Campers use shadow puppets to reenact a Norse myth, finding your animal spirit, etc.), providing Campers with a chance to experiment with a certain idea, or learn specific skills.
Counselors plan, supervise and participate in a variety of activities throughout the day that involve the entire camp. These include meals, Pulse Period (an athletic game or swimming), 535 Clubs (an afternoon period when either campers or staff can propose a short-term group project like planning a Viking Invasion of the camp across the lake or baking bread for the entire camp or running an origami tutorial or learning to play Taro) and After Dinner (a daily post-dinner period when different groupings of campers do things like perform for one another, play/invent a game or have campfires).
We ask Counselors to maintain the attitude of a “lead learner.” Beam Camp is an opportunity for all of us to grow, Camper and Staff alike. By creating an atmosphere in which we are open to experimenting, learning, and making the occasional mistake, we provide the Campers with a safe space in which they can challenge themselves. In order to be open to learning, we are not just watching Campers, but engaging in the activities with the Campers.
A Beam Counselor should be passionate about making and doing, ambitious, curious, and eager to share. We look for specialists and generalists. Technicians and big-picture people. Architects, engineers, athletes, sculptors, ceramicists, carpenters, manipulators of electricity, body movers, poets, story tellers, naturalists, and scientists. We like makers of images, objects, paintings, moving pictures, games, music and anything else. And you should be 20 years of age or over.
This position involves long hours, a good deal of physical activity, and a lot of social interaction. It does not involve a lot of personal time or personal space. Counselors have one day off per week, a one-hour break during the afternoon, and several nights off per week. Providing the best possible and most productive experience for our Campers is as creatively, physically and emotionally demanding as it rewarding; counselors need to have the ability to manage the stress that accompanies this mission.
We welcome applications from those who have a lot of experience working with children and those who may be newer to it.