Your family can get a lot more out of the camping experience than just campfires and marshmallows. Spending time outdoors with your kids is the best way to experience nature in real-time, without the electronic distractions of our everyday lives. Here are five reasons that family camping is fantastic. Do you have some others? I would love to hear them!
Time with your kids
When it comes to participating with your children, as opposed to just watching them do an activity by themselves, there is nothing better than family camping. Parent and kids can setup a tent, cook meals, go on hikes and share the outdoors experience together.
No TVs, no MP3 players and no video games. Will your kids (or you!) be able to survive a weekend without electronic stimuli? You might be surprised to find yourself missing the electronic entertainment, more than your children do.
Kids have always loved being outdoors and today’s youth are no different. They just don’t get as many opportunities, with today’s dual-income lifestyles, shorter vacations and year-round sports.
You may not feel like being challenged, but overcoming challenges is inherently rewarding. It is rewarding for kids and doubly rewarding for you, because you get to experience the parental pride of seeing your children overcome challenges.
Family camping challenges can range from getting the campfire started, to being the only dry family in the campground, after an overnight thundershower. Each time you take your family camping, be sure to look for these opportunities to challenge yourself and your children.
Do you remember field trips, when you were in school? I can remember field trips to Alcatraz, a nature preserve and a watershed, when I was in school. Nowadays, it seems like our kids are lucky if they get to visit a pumpkin patch, in October!
Our kids are not getting the “outdoor time” that we enjoyed in our youth, which leaves a void in their educational upbringing. There are a lot of things that you can read in a textbook, that just don’t sink-in until you actually see and touch them, in person.
Camping is an inherently social activity and you will meet some great families, who you would have never met, otherwise. It is always a lot of fun when we are camping in Oregon or Washington and we meet another family from the Bay Area, here in California.
Likewise, we meet a few families every year, here in California, from our home state of Oregon. We have seen a tremendous amount of social development in our kids, and we attribute a lot of that to learning how to “break the ice” with other kids, when we are camping.