“My 7-year-old daughter really wanted to go to dance and cheerleading camps this summer, but her friends are going to different camps and now she’s torn. At this age, what’s better—being with friends, or exploring new activities?”


Young kids are so great at making friends that I say try something new and expand her horizons. She will have plenty of time for hanging out with her friends when she is older and more adamant about doing things with them.

-Lori Alleman of Prairieville is the mom of three children, Makayla, 10, Peyton, eight, and Skyler, six.


If she goes where her friends are going and you know the other parents, you may be able to share drop off/pick up duties. [But] trying something completely different from her friends can be a great social experience. It will allow her to make new friends and she can share what she’s learned with her current circle. Ask her what she would want and why. “What if all of your friends were going to camp A, but your favorite is camp B? Do you want to go to A just to be with your friends even if you don’t like the activity?”

-Missy Falcon of Lakeview is mom to nine-year-old twin daughters, Sydnie and Shelby, and three-year-old twin sons, Remy and Dalton.


I think that having friends is very important and as much as she’d love to go with her friends, it might be nice to stick to the camps she wants to go to and make new friends. It’s always great meeting new people!

-Rachael Wooddall of Larose is mom to two-year-old Landen Joseph.


If your daughter is genuinely interested in dancing and you think that she is emotionally ready to step out on her own a bit, then I’d push the dance camp.  Talk about the dance camp and get her excited about her new opportunity. She may build more confidence when trying new things and meeting new people and that’s what it’s all about. She can hopefully still squeeze in a few playdates/sleepovers with her regular friends over the summer.

-Ashley Guidroz of Lakeview, mom to Olivia, nine, and Guy, six.

Join Our Playdate

Get our parenting e-newsletter and they won’t run with scissors.

Latest NOLA family-friendly stuff

Special needs in NOLA