Change the Program

Change the Program

Season 1, Episode 7

Jack is joined by James Davis and Nelson Strickland in this episode to discuss a plethora of topics from camp OGs to ELO bands. Before Nelson joins, Jack and James talk about progressive programming and sharing the purpose of a program to set the expectation for all involved.

It only takes off from there when video games are brought in and they work to level up the programming with optimal strategy and bringing older campers in on the camp magic. Additionally, they’re covering the choice models of making sure everything gets done at camp to make it run. Would you rather take out the trash or maintain the website? If you’re looking for gamers’ analysis of camp and upping your programming mindsets, this is the pod for you.

Producer EmJ’s takeaways:

  1. Elo Rating Algorithm is widely used rating algorithm that is used to rank players in many competitive games. Players with higher ELO rating have a higher probability of winning a game than a player with lower ELO rating. After each game, ELO rating of players is updated.”

  2. Programming can often be for all ages when it’s clear to all if the purpose of the program is open-play or competitive.

  3. Be aware that learning activities can create the symptoms of learning, but not actual lesson.



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Our Guests

headshot (1)-Aug-30-2023-09-43-58-6805-PMJames Davis

James Davis is a stay-at-home Dad to 3 kids. In a past life, he was the executive director of the Vanderkamp Center, where he challenged common conceptions in summer camping about how adults and children can live in community with one another. He co-founded Camp Stomping Ground in 2015 and still serves on the board of directors today. After stepping away from full-time camping he continued to work with kids in a liberated learning center and a homeschooling community center, and works to try and figure out how to help kids get from where they are now to where they want to be in the future while honoring who they are in the present.


Nelson Strickland is a camp director, consultant, envelope pusher, and song singer from Camden, New Jersey.  Nelson started going to camp at DragonFly Forest at the age of 11 and hasn't missed a summer of camp since. Aiding in the advancement of over 40+ camps, he now uses his diverse background to encourage others to ask themselves “How can we make this more awesome?”.  Nelson never aims to give folks “the right answer” and is consistently attempting to engineer innovative ideas from other industries to work in the camp space. He is currently the Director of Operations for TIC Summer Camps in the DC area and Lead Content Creator for an amateur esports organization.

Episode Info

This episode is hosted by Jack Schott.

The Summer Camp Society Podcast is edited and produced by EmJ Juszczyk.

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