A day travel camp for boys 11-16 diagnosed with ADHD
Based in Margate, New Jersey 
Social Skills Executive Functioning Independent Skills

ryan-wexelblatt-summer-trip-camp-director-adhd-ride-the-wave

Ryan Wexelblatt,LCSW-Director

I’m interested in my son having a successful summer!

ryan-wexelblatt-adhd-dude-summer-campOnline courses, coaching for kids and parents

 

ryan-wexelblatt-ride-the-wave-counseling-director Linwood, NJ
A modern approach to counseling, designed for the male brain
Ages 5-22
 

 

Does this describe your son?

Does this describe your son?

Social Skills

  • May be able to initially make friends but has trouble keeping them
  • Trouble understanding social cues
  • Doesn’t seem to connect with peers in social situations
  • Will act silly to get attention from peers, even if it is negative attention
  • Has difficulty “reading a room”
  • Feels more comfortable communicating with younger children or adults than peers
  • Tends to have one-sided conversations, talks at people about his interests
  • Frequently interrupts others or says things impulsively, lacks a “filter”
  • Can be inflexible, often says “No” to anything new
  • Labels other kids with ADHD as “annoying” or “weird” despite the fact he acts like them
  • Lacks understanding how he is perceived by others
  • Has difficulty understanding other’s thoughts and feelings
  • Labels everything except video games as boring
  • Has a tendency to “police” other kids and tries to control them
  • Had friends in elementary school but became more socially isolated when he got to  5th/6th grade
  • Struggles in unstructured or semi-structured social situations but does O.K. in structured situations

Executive Function Skills

  • Has a hard time sensing the passage of time
  • Difficulty tolerating boredom and non-preferred tasks
  • Needs constant prompting and supervision to get through things he doesn’t find interesting
  • Struggles during unstructured times, will not take initiative 
  • Chronically disorganized, forgets or looses belongings
  • Has a hard time recalling how he performed a task in the past
  • Difficulty with planning ahead
  • Has a hard time self-monitoring himself (particularly when using screen devices)
  • Becomes easily distracted and/or wastes time with trivial matters
  • Focuses on small details and has a hard time getting the “bigger picture”
  • Difficulty transitioning from one thing to another (particularly when playing video games)

Emotional Regulation Skills

  • Appears to be several years behind in his/her social and emotional maturity compared to same-age peers
  • Fearful of new situations, says no to trying new things
  • Difficulty differentiating between “small problems” and “big problems”
  • Has trouble letting go of things that bother him
  • Difficulty when there are changes in routine or during transitions
  • Becomes argumentative or explosive when told to get off video games/computer
  • Has a hard time solving problems, wants you to solve problems for him
  • Tries to avoid non-preferred tasks
  • Makes self-defeating comments
  • Does not understand how his tone of voice sounds to others
  • Has difficulty with competition
  • Low frustration tolerance

Contact us to begin the admissions process:

 

Skills We Teach

Skills we teach during Summer Trip Camp:

  • Learning to be flexible for the sake of being part of a peer group
  • Improving self-directed talk (doing things independently, without constant prompting)
  • Developing resiliency to get through non-preferred tasks
  • Understanding how to be show an interest in others so they know you want to be friends
  • Using humor appropriately 
  • Learning how to differentiate between what’s a “small problem” or “big problem”
  • Being responsible for your belongings
  • Improving perspective taking ability (understanding other’s thoughts/feelings & how you come across to others)
  • Developing self-advocacy skills
  • Cultivating and sustaining friendships
  • Making a “future plan” in order to complete a task
  • Cooking/Kitchen Safety
  • Maintaining good hygiene
  • Using past experiences to plan for the future

The skills we teach are based on the following methodologies and curricula.
Ryan Wexelblatt, Camp Director has more training in these methodologies than any mental health professional or Camp Director throughout the Philadelphia area and South Jersey.

  • Social Cognitive Skills: Social Thinking® created by Michelle Garcia Winner
  • Executive Function Skills: Based on the work of Kristen Jacobsen and Sarah Ward of Cognitive Connections Therapy.
  • Managing anxiety and developing resiliency: Cognitive Behavior Therapy

Additionally, our approach to building social skills, executive functioning and resiliency is informed by Dr. Michael Gurian’s work on boys’ brain development. 

Please contact us to discuss next steps:

What Makes Summer Trip Camp Unique

Summer Trip Camp is unlike any other summer camp throughout the Philadelphia area or Southern New Jersey. We teach skills that are not taught at schools or camps, including “ADHD camps” and “social skills camps”.

Developing executive functioning and social competency are intertwined and need to be taught through a specialized approach that requires specific training and education in teaching these skills. Furthermore, these skills need to be taught in a small group setting.

Please note that there are only 10 spaces available in Summer Trip Camp and admissions is rolling thus early registration is highly encouraged. 

I look forward to meeting your family,
Ryan Wexelblatt, LCSW
Summer Trip Camp Founder and Director

Please contact us to discuss next steps:

 

Where We Go and What We Do

Summer Ttrip Camp is based in Margate, New Jersey, a beach town.  We are an active camp and spend a lot of time outdoors as well as in the water.

Campers are dropped off at our drop-off location at 9:00 A.M. and picked up at 5:00 P.M.

Here are some of our 2019 trips and activities:
Bay Kayaking
Visiting a historical lighthouse
Surfing Lessons (twice a week in order to get in ample surfing time)
Waterparks
Bay Kayaking
Stand Up Paddleboarding
Dolphin Cruise
Naval Air Station museum

Escape Room
Wood painting
Executive Function Skill Building Activities (learning to make food,  plan ahead, time management)

Time and weather permitting we also spend some time at the beach each day.

Summer Trip Camp is an electronics-free camp meaning campers do not bring smartphones, tablets, etc. with them to camp.   

Please contact us to discuss next steps:

 

Weekly Schedule

Summer Trip Camp runs from 9:00-5:00, Mondays through Fridays.  

Parents provide transportation to and from camp.   Camp tuition is all inclusive.  Lunch, snacks, etc. are provided. 

Summer Trip Camp utilizes an experiential education model which means that our schedule varies from day to day.  We are not a typical day camp where campers have the same activities at the same times each day.  For the safety of our campers we do not post schedules online.  A weekly schedule is sent to registered camp families. 

Each day we do frontloading to help campers understand what we’ll be doing that day and in the next few days ahead.  We know our campers like routines and schedules thus frontloading helps prepare them for the week ahead.

(Monday & Tuesday) Sample Daily Schedule:

9:00-9:15 Arrival and hang-out/game time
9:15-10:00 **Frontloading and backwards planning”
10:00-10:30 Independent Skill Building Activity (Cooking, Money Management, etc.)
10:30 Depart for trip
10:30-3:00 Out in the community on trip
3:00-4:30 Beach (or on trip)
4:30 Return for clean-up and snack
4:30-5:00 Snack/Hang out/game time
5:00 Dismissal

Aside from learning critical executive functioning and independent skills we teach campers the most important skill of all, how to successfully “hang out” with similar-age peers during unstructured times, which can be particularly challenging for boys with ADHD/executive functioning challenges. 

Summer Trip Camp is an electronics-free camp.  Campers do not bring phones, tablets, etc. to camp and do not go on computers unless it is for research purposes.

**Frontloading is an executive function skill building strategy to help improve non-verbal working memory (picturing the future and preparing for upcoming transitions).

**Backwards planning is an executive functioning strategy to teach task completion, goal setting and time management.

*Hang-out time is a time when campers teach other campers games and negotiate play.  Unstructured play which is not directed by an adult  is critical to improving social and executive function skills.

Please contact us to discuss next steps:

 

Meet Ryan Wexelblatt-Summer Trip Camp Director

Welcome! I’m glad you’re interested in learning more about Summer Trip Camp. My name is Ryan, I’m a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, certified School Social Worker, Director of Summer Trip Camp and Ride the Wave Counseling in Linwood, NJ.

I began my summer camp career at age 3 and have spent the majority of my life working at, creating and directing various summer camps and programs.
My initial motivation for learning all I could about executive functioning and social skills stemmed from my son who had his share of learning, social and emotional regulation challenges. 

Diving head first into this field led to me creating a number of school-year and summer camp social learning programs. I opened my private practice, Ride the Wave Counseling (formerly Center for ADHD) in 2014 in Lower Merion, Pennsylvania.

I started Summer Trip Camp because the kids who I was working with in my practice did not have a summer camp option that met their needs. Their choices were to either attend mainstream camps where they would not learn important skills or attend social skills camps where they were considered the highest functioning kids.

Summer Trip Camp opened in 2017 as the first summer camp in the United States designed specifically for boys with ADHD to teach executive functioning, Social Thinking® and independent skills through an active program.
I am one of the few individuals in the Philadelphia area and South Jersey to have received a Social Thinking Clinical Training Level 1 Certificate of Completion. Additionally, I completed extensive training in executive functioning support strategies as well as Cognitive Behavior Therapy.
I have presented at national and regional conferences including the International Conference on ADHD and the Social Thinking® Global Providers Conference in addition to many regional conferences. 

In 2019 I partnered with ADDitude Magazine to create a new section, ADHD in Boys in which I answer viewers questions.   Please feel free to check out my blog and YouTube channel.   You can also see a list of my past presentations to see my speaking engagements from the past year. 

am originally from Lower Merion, Pennsylvania and attended Temple University for undergrad and Bryn Mawr College School of Social Work for graduate school.
Please feel free to contact me to discuss how Summer Trip Camp can benefit your son. I look forward to hearing from you.
RYAN WEXELBLATT, LCSW

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker in NJ and PA
  • Certified School Social Worker in NJ
  • Certificate in Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Youth from the Beck Institute
  • Received Social Thinking® Clinical Training Level 1 Certificate of Completion
  • Extensive training in executive function skill development strategies

Please contact Ryan to discuss next steps:

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Summer Trip Camp a day or overnight travel camp?
We are a day travel cam .   Camp is based in Margate, New Jersey.  Parents transport campers to and from camp each day.  Margate is a family friendly beach town that is very popular with families who vacation here each summer.  Neighboring towns where families vacation include Ventnor, Longport and Ocean City.  We can help you point you in the right direction of finding a vacation rental home. 

Is Summer Trip Camp a therapeutic camp?
Summer Trip Camp is not a clinical program and is not a behavior modification program. There is no therapy, social skills groups, etc.  Each day we do a lesson (about 30-50 minutes) in executive functioning, Social Thinking concepts, independent skills and the rest of the time we are out having fun and being active.   

We are going to be vacationing at the shore, can my son participate in camp?
Absolutely!  Camp is open to families who are local to the area as well as those on vacation or who have summer homes in the area. 

How can you teach social skills if your camp does not have peer role models without ADHD? 
If you son struggles socially he cannot improve his social skills simply being around kids with more developed social skills. Individuals who struggle socially are born with weak social observational skills.  They cannot improve their social skills simply be being around kids with more developed social skills.   If “peer modeling” worked then theoretically no one should struggle socially after they’ve been in school for several years as they have spent the majority of their day around students who do not have ADHD.   

What makes you different than the overnight ADHD camps I see advertised in ADHD magazines?
Most overnight camps that market themselves as ADHD camps and social skills camps cannot be very selective in terms of whom they take because of their extremely high tuition thus they accept campers with a range of neurodevelopmental challenges.

Summer Trip Camp is a small program specifically for boys who present with ADHD.  We are not a special needs camp and are not designed for campers who are diagnosed with autism.  Through the admission process if we determine that a camper would be better served at a camp with a greater degree of support than we can provide we will provide you with a referral to a camp where we think your son can be successful. 

What kind of results can we expect?
As with any experience, the more time your son spends at camp the more he will generalize the strategies and concepts we are teaching.   Parents have remarked how their sons have developed a greater degree of independence and flexibility through attending Summer Trip Camp as well as developing resiliency and independent problem solving skills.   We want to be clear that there are no quick fixes when it comes to social & executive function skill development.  These areas of lagging skills have a great deal of depth.  During Summer Trip Camp we focus on foundational skills that form the basis of executive functioning and social learning. 

I’ve searched all over the country and haven’t found anything like your camp.   This is exactly what our son needs!  Do you know of a camp like yours in (insert your city here)?
You have done your homework correctly!  There is no camp like Summer Trip Camp operating anywhere in the U.S.  

Ryan Wexelblatt, Summer Trip Camp Director has extensive training in teaching executive function skill-building strategies.  Additionally, Ryan is one of the few males in the country to have received a Social Thinking Certificate of Completion for participating in the Social Thinking Clinical Training Program (Level 1).   A School Social Worker and Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Ryan has a lifetime of camp experience and is the Director of Ride the Wave Counseling in Linwood, New Jersey.  Additionally, ADDitude Magazine created a new section on their website for Ryan’s content. .  Please check out the ADHD in Boys section to watch Ryan’s videos and the ADHD Dude Facebook page.

Summer Trip Camp sounds exactly what my son needs but I can’t convince him to attend. Any suggestions?
Boys with ADHD often say “No” to anything new or unfamiliar.  This can be based in anxiety or lack of resiliency to step outside of their comfort zone.  If you allow your son to make decisions (such as whether or not to attend a camp) he will miss out on experiences that will help him grow. 

As bright and articulate as your son may be he does not possess the maturity or foresight to know what he needs in terms of skill development.  You need to decide what he needs, even if he initially is resistant to stepping outside of his comfort zone.  We are skilled at helping campers move through their initial anxiety. 

What should I tell my son about attending Summer Trip Camp?  He doesn’t like the ADHD label and thinks his social skills are fine despite the fact he lacks friends. 
You can explain to your son that we do not sit around and talk about ADHD, social skills, etc.  We are an active camp for boys who like to “learn while doing”.  While we do have a brief instructional period each day, it is directly tied into our daily plans.  You can tell him it’s a camp for kids who like being active and need a little help with the things their brain makes a little harder for them to learn.  

Do you work on academic executive function skills during camp?
No! We do not believe in teaching academic executive function skills during the summer as their is no relevant context for them.  Furthermore, the kids we’ve known who have attended academic executive function programs in the summer were very unhappy with sitting indoors all day working on “school stuff” during the summer.  We focus on improving global executive function skills such as planning ahead, improving self-directed talk and conceptualizing time.  

How do you handle medications during camp?
Most of our campers take medication which we will dispense if necessary.  Please note that Summer Trip Camp does not have a nurse on staff given our small size thus we are not a camp for campers who have significant medical needs.

Who is not a good candidate for Summer Trip Camp?
Please note that Summer Trip Camp is not a special needs or therapeutic camp.  We do not offer a level of support for boys whom:

  • are prone to physical/verbal aggression, emotional outbursts in school or in public
  • prone to elopement when upset/angry
  • attend a cyber school or are home schooled
  • make threats of aggression towards teachers or classmates
  • require 1:1 support in school or are in a self-contained behavioral classroom for the majority of the school day
  • are diagnosed with Asperger’s or higher-functioning autism
  • have significant anxiety that manifests as negativity/outbursts when in a group setting

Additionally, Summer Trip Camp is not a good fit for parents who have separation anxiety from their son as we do not permit campers to have mobile devices at camp.

Contact us to begin the application process:

 

 

 

Contact

Please contact us to discuss next steps, we look forward to speaking with you.