9 Educational camping ideas for kids
Going on a camping trip with kids is always interesting, right? Children love to play and have fun in nature but how about you change the game and plan an educational trip to the outdoors? Camping should be fun but if you also teach them some survival skills and nature basics that won’t hurt.
In this article, I will show you which educational camping activities are perfect for young kids. I guarantee you that they won’t get bored over them as they will be occupied with new things. Check the camping ideas that will awaken their curiosity and the will to explore.
Learning New Things in Nature
I will show you how you can teach your children some new skills, and knowledge through games, play, exploration, and other types of activities so they will be more educated and prepared for life.
In this section, I will list activities that are linked to camping itself. Invite your kids to help you with the tasks around the campground and they will know how to survive in nature when they get older.
Pitching a camping tent
Invite your children to help you to set up a family cabin tent where you will spend nights and play. Grab the instructions and start building the tent. I see how children help their parents set up a tent at the camps and they can be of great help.
Kids can pass you the poles or even insert them into the sleeves. Give them an easy task so they will be able to accomplish it. Talk to them in the process so they will know what has to be done to enjoy tent camping.
Make a tour inside a tent when you will be done with the setup and show them what features the tent has and how to adjust them regarding the needs.
Making a Campfire
Teaching them how to make a campfire is important. The first thing to mention is that fire is dangerous and can make damage or hurt people, so they should be cautious while starting it and when it burns.
Ask your children to go pick some kindling and tinder while you pick some logs. Go in the forest together and pick the firewood. Set a fire together while explaining the process.
Cook your Favorite Dishes
When you have a campfire burning, you can make some delicious meals. How about making some pancakes or s’mores for the kids? Let them bake a pancake and put their favorite filling on.
Learn from Mother Nature
Mother Nature is our biggest teacher. Plan a daily hike in the woods where you will explore a new area, learn about the trees, and wild animals. If the trees have marks, teach them why the trees are colored. Get some books about plant recognition so they will learn to identify the plant species. It is especially important that you teach them about poisonous plants like poison ivy, poisonous oak, and others that they should leave alone. You can also download an app about plant identification on your phone if you want.
Make an Herbarium
Kids can pick some of the tree leaves and plants and make a herbarium. Tell them to pick 10 plants (tree leaves, bush leaves, or plants from the meadow). The picked items should be dry to put in the herbarium.
What does the herbarium have to have? Each plant should have its (Latin) name, place, site, date, and the name of the picker. I enjoyed making one when I was young, and I am sure your children will too.
Grab some Nature Books
I encourage you to pack some kid’s books about nature. These books are great as the children will be able to stay occupied, have fun and learn at the same time. Pick picture books like pack some kid’s books about nature. or others if you have younger kids (3-7 years).
Before going to the wild, go to the library with your kid and let him pick his favorite books to read at the campsite.
Play Scavenger Hunt
I love this game! It is a game where the participants make a list of items that must be found in nature. You can make two teams. Each team should find all the items first to win the game. I recommend that you pick items such as an oak tree leaf, a fruit, a feather, etc. so children will learn about nature while searching.
Do you want to make a scavenger hunt even more exciting? Give a task to take a picture of a bird or to record the sound of an animal. Don’t forget to take a camera or a phone to do that.
Play games that involve nature like deer, deer, deer, fire tender, food chain lap-sit, flower face, judge nature says, and others that will make your camping trip interesting and educational.
Teach them about Good Camping Etiquette
When you go outdoors with the kids they should know how to behave and what is good camping etiquette. Teach them about the “leave no trace” rule and put a few garbage bags around the camp so they will throw trash there and not leave them on the ground in the camp or in the woods.
Teaching your children to be responsible and environmentally aware is important as they will leave the place as it was, without changing the natural habitat of the wild animals. Did you tell them that bears love food and trash? Make sure you mention this fact so they will be strict to leave the place clean.
Use your imagination and include activities that you see as worthy to do at a campsite with your family members to entertain and learn. Happy camping!
About the Author:
“Tadej Kozar is \the founder of Camping Valley. The site is an extension of my lifestyle and passion for outdoors. Everything that I learn, experience, and find valuable is on the site for you. We live in a technological era, but nature is reminding us more and more that we should go to the places where our heart and soul feel like home.”