Happy Campers: Enhancing Social Competence in Adolescents with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder at Summer Camp
Many adolescents with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) experience challenges in social competence. Evidence suggests that specialized summer camp with social skills training may have positive outcomes on social competence development in adolescents with ADHD. This article reports on a pilot study of a therapeutic summer camp program for children and adolescents with ADHD. The study examines the degree to which program objectives were achieved through a pre-camp, post-camp design using a series of standardized instruments, camp evaluations, and surveys with parents. The results indicated that the campers reported significantly lower social competence when compared to a normative sample of adolescents and adolescents with ADHD improved their social competence by the end of camp. This research has implications for clinicians, researchers, caregivers, and outdoor education advocates to take an assertive lead in promoting evidence-based psychosocial programs for youth with and without ADHD into more generalizable community settings.
Keywords: ADHD, adolescents, social competence, summer camp, social skills
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