The great outdoors can be enjoyed by both young and old, but it is essential to plan together in order to make your camping trip more pleasant for everyone involved.
When the decision is made to plan a family camping trip it is best to include the children in the process from the beginning. Camping can provide fun family time and gives children an opportunity to explore the outdoors and learn about nature. Everyone involved will have an opportunity to relax and spend some time away from the ordinary routines of daily life back home.
Why not make this a learning adventure? Talk with your (grand)children about what it is that they specifically want to do and see.
Planning ahead will help the children know what to expect
Planning ahead helps you to be prepared to deal with the activities that may transpire. Consider allowing each child to bring along a disposable camera. This can be used to create a camping journal; encourage your children to capture photos that are meaningful to or interest them.
This might be a photo of birds unique to the area, a boat, a campfire, insects, plants, family members, the campsite, etc. Let your children decide but talk about this during the planning stage so they can give it some thought beforehand.
Some simple activities you might want to consider include watching clouds for shapes or objects and blowing bubbles. Your children might also enjoy collecting small souvenirs such as pebbles to take home and identify later.
Perhaps you could take along some paste or glue, some pipe cleaners, markers, and other craft supplies to make camp critters out of stones and twigs. Besides fun and games, allow your kids to help with some of the responsibilities and allow them to stay up late a few times.
Perhaps they can gather firewood or pile rocks around the fire pit; whatever they can do to help will not only assist with the chores but it will give them a sense of empowerment as well.
Children may tend to get frightened during a camping trip
It’s important that their fears and concerns are acknowledged. If they hear a strange noise perhaps you could get a flashlight and explore the source of the noise even if you didn’t hear anything. Safety and peace of mind should always be of primary concern anytime you are with children.
When on trails children should wear whistles and be taught to stay in one spot should they get lost and blow the whistle instead of wondering around looking for you. You should also remind your children that wild animals should never be bothered in any way and to avoid touching plants they’re not familiar with.
Keep in mind that children may have a harder time dealing with extreme heat so be sure to provide plenty of hydration and shade. Sunscreen and insect repellent will be very important elements in your camping gear. Obviously, planning ahead can prevent problems and boredom.
Camping with children can be fun and educational for all – prepare properly with input from the children to ensure a successful trip!