TAKE YOUR FAMILY CAMPING THIS SUMMER
Many schools have been closed for the remainder of the academic year, but that doesn’t mean you have to jam pack every hour of your child’s days with lessons from the curriculum the teachers sent you. You can also use this time to explore your child’s interests, and incorporate some real life lessons that can’t be taught in classrooms.With a number of national parks and campgrounds closed due to the pandemic, many family camping trips are canceled for the time being. But parents, there are still ways to take your kid on that camping excursion by crafting the perfect indoor adventure. And if you have tiny explorers, this is your chance to introduce them to their first camping trip.
Watch for WildlifeTake this opportunity to teach your kids about the local wildlife you might encounter on a camping trip and how to behave around them on a hike through the forest. To get the ball rolling, check out National Geographic Kids on YouTube, where your child can view short videos to learn about the wildlife and critters that live outdoors, and what their role is on this planet. Go out into the backyard afterwards, and try to identify some of these critters with your kids. The younger ones will also love a scavenger hunt using stuffed animal versions of the wildlife you just discussed.
Recreate a Campfire DinnerPart of the fun of camping is being able to make your meal and eat it outdoors. This can easily be recreated in your backyard or on your patio using a camp stove, which will also shake up the dining routine a bit for the kids. Try the Camp Chef Everest, a two burner stove that provides plenty of cooking space for a family, and foldable wind guards to protect your flames from errant gusts. Don’t let its compact design fool you— it still has the surface area to handle large cookware, making this portable stove an excellent all around choice for both backyard campfire dinners and in-real-life campfire meals. Replicate the outdoor dining experience as closely as you can by spreading out a blanket and having dinner on your lawn or on the floor of your living room. End the meal by making s’mores for a fun dessert, a recipe simple enough for kids to take part in and assemble too.
See the Moon and StarsEncourage your child’s love of learning by exploring the curiosities of the night sky together. Invite your child to gaze at the moon with this NASA-branded kids telescope, which provides an easy way for a beginner to get started, and doubles as an instrument that can be used to discover surrounding natural landscapes during the day. Complete the experience by sleeping under the stars, and if your tent is pitched indoors, then hang a set of twinkle lights from the ceiling or drape them over the tent to simulate the starry night sky.
Enjoy Campfire TimeA longstanding camp tradition is spending time together around an open fire and participating in sing-alongs. Cozy up around a backyard fire pit like the easy-to-use BioLite FirePit, but if space doesn’t allow, a real fire isn’t necessary; kids can always use their imagination. You can also use your indoor fireplace, or build one by gathering branches for the base and crumpling up yellow, red, and orange tissue paper for the flames. Round out the night by singing campfire songs, or by reading camp themed bedtime stories, like A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee and Llama Llama Loves Camping. READ MORE: Written By: Vivian Chung, Published By “The Discover Blog”
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