School Break Camps

Thank you for your interest in our programs.  We have tentative info below for our 2023-2024 season. For announcements about when registration will open, if you’ve attended camp in the past, you are on our list, if not, add your name to our mailing list here.

If you want your child to have recreational time with other kids in a safe, creative space, with games, art, cooking, and community building, please join us.

*A camp for kids to get swept up in the joy of playing, on their own, and with other kids, and with well structured times with specific games and projects led by creative, dynamic staff. We create the space, you send your kids, and magic truly happens.
*unplugged all day, with primarily outdoor classrooms with covered roofing
* Rely on us-we have 24 years of experience
*locally started and run, woman and LGBTQIA+ owned, family business.

“Monkey Business Camp put kids and staff first. They center their values and set families’ expectations accordingly. Put it all together and our kid had great fun in a safe space. ”

DATES-tentative for 2023-2024 school year

  • Thanksgiving Week Camp 2023: November 20-22
  • Winter Camp 2022: December 19-22 and/or December 26-29; we are aware that some schools are taking the week after (Jan 2-5), but it does not look like we will be able to offer camp.
  • February Camp 2024: February 20-23
  • Spring Camp 2024: April 1-5

Weekly sign-ups only, unless we have last minute spaces, in which case we will consider less than weekly.  During the 2022-2023 season, we filled in advance for all camps but Winter when we ran 3 groups, instead of 2.

HOURS

Campers: 8:30-4:30 (see youth leader details below) 

  • Camper Drop-off window: 8:30-9:00
  • Camper Pick-up window: 4:10- 4:30
  • Additional alternate times that can be used for either drop-off or pick-up: 10:15, 1:30, or 3:30. This can be on a regular basis or just one or a few times.  It is not possible to drop off or pick up at any time, due to our schedule. Contact our office to inquire about an exception.

Youth Leaders: 8:25-4:35

  • drop-off on time each day, as youth leaders help greet campers as they arrive.
  • they stay through entire day, helping until all campers go home.  At times, they will be ready to go at 4:30pm.
  • they have a half hour break mid-day, where they take time away from campers.
  • If you have one child who is a youth leader and one who is a camper, they can both do youth leader hours.
  • Find application at the end of this page.

“Both my kids absolutely love Monkey Business! They’ve done the summer camp before but this was our first time trying a school break camp and it was a huge hit. They’re very excited to return next month!”

AVAILABILITY

Past camps: Thanksgiving week 2022, Winter Camp 2022 week 1, and February and Spring Camp 2023 all filled in advance.

LOCATION

Berkwood Hedge School: 1809 Bancroft Way, Berkeley

We have been hosting camps at this wonderful school since 2004, and its location in Downtown Berkeley makes it accessible from many local cities.  There are many outdoor spaces for play and projects. Adding to our usual curriculum, we may take neighborhood walks and visit parks some mornings.

“Monkey Business is a rare find, especially in these days of ”early specialization’ type camps. Relaxed and fun, creative and innovative while still harkening back to simpler times. The emphasis on knowing and appreciating each child was felt.”

GROUP SIZE & AGES

Group Size: There will be maximum of about 25 in each group, including campers, youth leaders and staff.

How many Groups: 1-3, depending on staffing

Ages: Campers, Ages 5.75-10, with Youth Leaders, Ages 11+: for exception to minimum age, fill out this survey (we will activate link once camps enrolling) for those as young as 5.25, or 5 years 3 months.

Notes about Groups:

  • With an approximately 1:9 camper: staff ratio, kids need to overall follow directions and be kind to other campers.  We have about 10 transitions in our day, some with more free-play options, and others with needing to be focus on a particular activity: group times, snack and lunch, reading time, journal time, and visits to parks.
  • Friends and siblings- during registration, name friends you’d like to be in the same group and preference for siblings to be in same group or not.

ACTIVITIES

We have been offering camps for kids successfully for 25 years, and will offer similar programming, with daily art (we have special guests come into share with us), nature exploration, field games and ball play, board games, community building, and weekly specials.  We might even be able to add in some baking this year. The school developed outdoor spaces with overhangs, for many types of weather, so we aim to spend most time outside.

“Social interaction, and warm, loving fun.”

 

FEES (No Fee Payment Plans & Scholarships Available)

Our camp is working on inclusivity, offering 3 fee tiers. All levels support camp and higher levels, if able, give extra support for diverse programming, our incredible staff, and our scholarship fund which gave out $31,000 in 2022 and at over $40,000 this year. If you are registering siblings, the lower cost option is possible. We do not track tier choices, please feel good about the choice you make.

Pricing for one week session, 8 hour days (shorter weeks pro-rated): We expect to have same range for one full week of camp for 2023-2024 season

Sliding Scale Tiers – you choose which one at time of registration:

  • Camper: third tier $630, second tier $725, first tier $820
  • Youth Leader CIT role: same as camper fees above
  • Youth Leader JC role: third tier $100, second tier $175, first tier $255

Additional Details:

  • Payment Plan-pay over a period of months for no extra fee
  • Scholarship Application: Apply for 30-75% discount off of fees.
  • Discount-E-check: Pay with E-check, instead of credit card, and you are able to receive a 1% discount with the code eCheck, as we pay less and pass the savings to you.

 

“Camp enabled us to work for the entire time our son was there. Plus, he is so very social, and he desperately needed company from kids his own age.”

LOGISTICS

  • Campers bring their own lunch and an additional 2 snacks (morning, afternoon) and water bottle.
  • Nuts and nut butters-we determine if these will be allowed or not based on who is enrolled and if they can be around nuts and nut butters.

STAFF

Our staff from diverse backgrounds are nurturing, creative and enthusiastic. They are hired to guide and enrich our programs and foster friendship among campers. All children, returning and new campers alike, are actively welcomed.

Once our team is more clear, Click here to see bios and photos of some of the staff you can expect to see and when. We often have multi-lingual staff!

“Thank you for offering such a high quality camp and for the very personal feeling of Monkey Business.”

 

YOUTH LEADERS: Ages 11-17

We are looking for fun loving, caring and kind youth who enjoy interacting with young children.  Youth Leaders help make camp a more fun, safe place. We have found it is important for youth to want to do this, not it only be something parents want for their kids. Please share more about why your child wants to join:

New Youth Leader Application (we will activate this link once registration open)

Return Youth Leader Application (we will activate this link once registration open)

  • CITs (age 11 or older)- looking for 2-3/group to support. Cost the same as camper fees, this is a chance to gain training
  • Junior Counselor (age 14 or older and former youth leaders) – looking for 1-2 for each group each session to support group. Cost is greatly reduced. We will prioritize those who received a lot of positive feedback about being able to mentor other youth leaders.
  • If new to our camp, and even if age 14 or older, youth leaders start off as CITs. Older CITs may be offered JC pricing, especially if they have a lot of experience at other camps.

Pre-Camp Orientation: There will be a handbook to read (and a survey to submit for those who have not attended Summer 2023).

YOUTH LEADERSHIP OVERVIEW

Note about availability- see above, after the “Hours” section.

 

“Being a youth leader helps me put my leadership qualities to good use, and I have a great time hanging out with the campers.”