I had the opportunity to go camping for four days, twice this summer. When I was a younger mom, with seven kids at home, we went camping a lot. I loved cooking over the fire and toasting marshmallows. But now my kids are grown and camping had become something from my past.
I wasn’t sure how I would feel going camping again. And it wasn’t just any camping, it was ‘rough’ camping. You know, no flush toilets or showers, just an outhouse, and a fire pit. Yikes! However, I survived and was again reminded why I used to take my kids camping, as I interacted and watched my grandkids learn about and experience the great outdoors.
The following article by Simon Baker will remind you of some of the reason we take the time and trouble to get our kids out of doors through camping. It’s sprinkled with some super pictures of my own grandkids and our camping experience.
There are a few weeks of summer left and Labor Day is coming up. Why not take a couple of days and go camping. Enjoy!
5 Reasons to Take Your Kids Camping
It might not seem like a good idea to bring your kids when you go camping. However, bringing your kids with you is less work and stress than leaving them alone at home. For one, you won’t need to worry about them staying up too late or how they’re treating each other while you’re gone. You won’t even need to feel stressed about who’s going to look after them. : )
If you’re still not buying the idea, here are 5 more reasons why you should consider taking your kid’s camping.
1. It increases your children’s physical activity
With the internet and all the cool devices today, it isn’t surprising to find a lot of kids who would rather sit on the couch and play mobile games than to spend time outdoors. The problem with this is that it encourages a sedentary lifestyle. Furthermore, it can make children overweight and weak.
Camping encourages your kids to participate in a lot of outdoor activities. You will also be exposing them to the sunshine and fresh air, which are essential in boosting their natural immune system. Camping activities can strengthen their muscles and bones, too.
2. It helps them appreciate what they have
It’s easy to take things for granted if you have everything within easy reach at home. You have food ready when you get hungry. You have a roof over your head when the weather gets bad.
With camping, you’ll be able to let your kids see a different way of life. You can teach them how to create fire from scratch and barbecue on it. You can teach them to cook simple meals and the importance of cleaning up after themselves (to keep the rodents and small animals at bay). There will also be a lot of hard work, particularly when it comes to erecting tents, hauling drinking water or chopping firewood.
When you get back home they will have an appreciation for hot water from the tap, clean sheets, and a refrigerator. For a while at least, they will be very grateful for home.
3. It builds memories
Even though you may experience a few mishaps while camping, they’re likely to be the same memories you’ll be laughing at in a few years. Camping allows you to bond with your children in a different way than you do at home.
There will also be fewer distractions so you won’t need to compete for your child’s attention or them for yours. It’s a great break for everyone in the family.
4. It’s a cheaper alternative for a family vacation
Camping is an affordable way to vacation with your family. With proper planning and preparation, there are ways to make it even more affordable.
National and state campsites are far less expensive than hotels or theme parks. Meals cooked on the fire are cheaper than restaurants and often taste better. It isn’t hard to find a place with water for fishing and canoeing and that costs less than a fancy waterpark.
You can build up the necessary equipment over time so that it doesn’t need to break the bank. Look for durable equipment, high on quality and be less concerned with name brands.
A great option to consider is an electric cool box. You can fill it with ready-to-cook meals and lots of water so you won’t have to buy from nearby stores. Make sure there’s enough snacks for everyone and include sandwiches, cookies, and chips in your box.
5. It’s a good opportunity to enhance their skills
Camping skills don’t come naturally to everyone. They need to be taught and learned. Taking your kids camping gives you the chance to teach them survival lessons they’ll be able to teach their kids. It’s a good opportunity to pass on or even start your own family traditions. You can learn many things together – to identify flowers and trees, animals and how to care for the earth. Camping can also enhance your children’s social skills. They’ll be able to meet a lot of people from different places and with different cultures, depending on your chosen campsite. If you find a lot of kids in your area, make sure to invite them over for a campfire, some smores, and a few scary stories. These experiences are the ones your kids will remember for a long time.
Camping is a truly connected, family activity that pays dividends for the time and effort it takes. So use what’s left of the summer and take your kids camping.
Simon Barker writes to inspire people about low-cost ways of traveling and camping. Aside from sharing his best tips in saving while making the best out of his trips, he also does in-depth electric cool box reviews.