Peoria, Arizona. May 17, 2023. In a unique partnership, Arizona-based Camp Tuku, a residential summer camp for kids age 6 – 17 years old, is collaborating with Emory University’s Center for Contemplative Science (The Center) to integrate Camp Tuku’s mindfulness summer camp program with The Center’s SEE Learning™ curriculum. The redesigned curriculum will integrate competencies, resources, and skills that support youth wellbeing and flourishing.
SEE Learning™ is an innovative, evidence-based program that provides a comprehensive framework for social, emotional and ethical competencies that are essential to and protective of a young persons’s mental health, academic success, and personal resilience. The curriculum, designed for youth in grades K-12 teaches skills that help youth build positive self-awareness, compassionate regard for self and others, emotional regulation, empathy, ethical discernment, resilience, respect for differences, and strategies for effective interpersonal relations, conflict resolution, and stress management.
The collaborative partnership builds upon Camp Tuku’s existing mindfulness-based summer camp program by providing youth with additional strategies for cultivating self-awareness, regulating emotions, building community, and strengthening inner resilience. Set against the backdrop of awe-inspiring vistas, woodland trails, and starlit skies, campers learn how to apply mindfulness + SEE Leaning skills while engaged in exciting camp activities and outdoor adventures. Among the wide variety of camp electives to choose from are archery, arts, aquatics, cooking, drama, hiking, challenge course, STEM, survival skills, woodworking, yoga and the list goes on.
The partnership came about at time when Camp Tuku’s founder and Executive Director, Sincia Liu, was searching for mindfulness training specifically designed for children and teens. “Upon a recommendation from my longtime meditation teacher, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, I learned that Emory University had developed an incredibly rich social, emotional, and ethical program for students under the guidance of his holiness the Dalai Lama,” stated Ms. Liu.
“It has been a passionate project for me to establish a camp program that supports youth with a joyful journey in their growth and development. I wanted to combine immersion in nature with teaching young people practical skills to build inner resilience, growth mindset, and connectedness with others. SEE Learning presented a great opportunity to connect mindfulness practices that help children develop self-awareness, with the methods of SEE Learning to teach skills that help children flourish through building resilience, regulating emotions, strengthening focus and attention, and embracing our common humanity and interdependence. Camp Tuku is blessed with the opportunity to collaborate with the Emory team to adapt the program for our camp curriculum for staff training and camper programming.”
“We are excited to work with Camp Tuku to assist in the integration of SEE Learning® (Social Emotional and Ethical Learning) into their summer camp programming. SEE Learning is an international and research-based curriculum and framework based out of Emory University that helps students develop competencies such as awareness and compassion. Social, emotional and ethical learning is an essential component of a well-rounded education, and we are committed to helping children develop the skills they need to thrive both in and out of the classroom. By incorporating SEE Learning, Camp Tuku will continue to provide a fun, engaging, and supportive environment where campers can learn and grow, build meaningful relationships, and develop a strong sense of self-awareness, self-compassion and resilience. We are excited to see the positive impact that SEE Learning will have on campers this summer and beyond!”
The new curriculum will launch during Camp Tuku’s summer sessions in June and July 2023. Outcomes research will be implemented at several time points throughout the post-camp period.
About Camp Tuku
Camp Tuku is where nature meets joyful minds! Camp Tuku provides a mindfulness-based summer camp experience aimed at empowering children and teens with essential skills to support positive self-awareness, inner resilience, and health coping strategies. With a holistic focus on mind, heart, and body, Camp Tuku’s unique curriculum helps bolster kids’ social and emotional wellbeing, empowering them to be better able to navigate difficult emotions and proactively respond to the inevitable challenges life can bring their way. Launched in late 2019 in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Camp Tuku serves a diverse group of youth at locations in Arizona and New York State. http://www.camptuku.org
About SEE Learning
SEE Learning™ provides a comprehensive framework for the cultivation of social, emotional and ethical competencies and is in use in K–12 education, higher education, and professional education. Initiated as a pilot program in 2015, SEE Learning has been implemented in programs and institutions across the U.S. and internationally. Over 800 educators in various countries have attended SEE Learning workshops, helping to enhance and refine its pedagogical framework and contribute to the development of curricula and programs for different settings.
About The Emory Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics
With a vision of “a compassionate and ethical world for all,” the Center focuses on research, programming, and curriculum development for educating both heart and mind. Evidence-based programs utilize a theoretical framework that teaches competencies to support flourishing and well-being for individuals and societies.