Camping can be one of the fondest memories for kids with a lot of learning through nature. So why not make preschoolers part of outdoor adventures with more directions to learn and engage? We bring camping activities for preschoolers to make them inspired towards natures’ way.
- Read camping books
- Sing around the campfire
- Try camp-style cooking- camping treat
- Go for hikes
- Identify nature, plants, flowers, etc
- Play games
- Nature walks
- Water activities
- Camping crafts
- Dig in the dirt
Preschoolers are quick learners. By choosing the right set of camping activities for preschoolers, you can change the limited classroom education to a whole new level. Camping is learning through adventure. But precautions are high!
Anything in nature is great; Camping Activities for Preschoolers
Keeping kids entertained while camping is a big challenge as they are used to entertaining themselves through the internet, games, etc by today. They are quick in changing from one activity to another. But believe me, you can make fun and learning in a perfect combo for your learning-age kids while camping. Not just sticking to books, make your kid an explorer in real nature.
There are plentiful activities you can do while camping with kids. For different ages, camping sounds different. Let’s see how you can keep preschoolers entertained to the highest while camping. Choose the nearest and safest campsite and I bring all daytime activities.
Thinking about taking preschoolers out of the classroom and leaving for a nature day at a campsite; check out the coolest things to do with them to make them happy and smart.
Read Camping Books
Reading my favorite camping books is one of the best things for me too while camping. It is relaxing and fixes the mood. And this is very helpful to keep your kids (especially for preschoolers) focused on real nature stories.
When kids are at a campground, they may feel strange and scary sometimes. This is a whole new experience and by reading a good camping book to them you can ease their mind. Listening to a story like what you see around will make the kiddos feel in love with the surroundings. And that can keep them excited about things to come.
Make sure you pick a smart book telling things about camping, things to watch, activities to do and many more things about camping. Let them know how they can enjoy the simple pleasures while outdoors. My picks for preschoolers include,
- Scaredy Squirrel Goes Camping
- Pete the Cat Goes Camping
- The Little Book Of Camping
- And Then Comes Summer
- The Camping Trip
Sing Around the Campfire
Sitting around a campfire and singing is not only for kids but also fun for all. I used to sing no matter with whom I camp and it is more fun when you go with a whole team. So with little preschoolers, you can make a fun moment around the campfire. And why only sing, let’s dance!
Singing may sound a little silly for some but believe me this is so much fun. Kids love songs, so why not sing along with them? If you have a small hike or nature walk, you can take some relaxing times by singing around the campfire. But remember not to take them so close until it is all set.
This is not only to sit, but the perfect place to talk to each other. So play the game of listening and talk around the campfire and know what your kiddos tell about the adventurous day out. And this is good to have your camping snacks and drinks too for a break and before moving to something different. Pack up your portable speakers to listen to the favorite tunes in the background.
Try Camp Style Cooking- Camping Treat
One of the best ways you can keep kids happy while camping is taking them help for camp style cooking. You can let them make their meals; give long-handled forks to cook their own hot dogs on the fire.
How could you miss making s’mores?
Teach your kids to roast their gooey marshmallows and s’mores. They will surely camp again for the best camping treats. There are plentiful camping meals you can easily cook with your kids. And take the inspiration home and try more camp style cooking at home too. Preschoolers are quick learners; they will surely catch the meals to make the best camp style cooking in their next outdoor escape.
Go for Hikes with Kids
Without hiking, camping will not be complete. But hiking with kids is not as easy as it sounds. When taking preschoolers to a camping experience, you must find easy spots to camp with easy hikes.
Many campsites in the USA have these types of paths to go hiking for kiddos including Acadia National Park, Lake Clark National Park, Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, and more. And even on longer trails, you can plan a short hike deciding the comfortable length for your kids. It is important to check for good weather as hikes are not easy when it rains, too stormy, or even at peak heat temperatures.
Hiking is one of the cool camping activities for preschoolers to do while camping. It is a good activity to learn to work as a team and follow safety guidelines. But only if you find the easy spots, you can make them feel happy and comfortable. Take frequent breaks and pack enough water and snacks too.
Exploring Times- Identify nature, plants, flowers, etc
By leaving little learners to spend time in nature, you can make them smart learners. Let them find different shapes and colors, identify beautiful things in nature, watch insects, clear blue sky and everything outdoors. They will realize the existence of different things beyond what they find in the home garden or around the preschool garden.
You can play scavenger hunt with kids when they are leisurely exploring the campground. Show them flat stones, flower buds, leaves of different shapes, seeds, berries or any fruit and many little things around and ask them to collect them. You can make a perfect treasure box and enjoy later from things you collected from the camping session.
If you are choosing a campsite with a sand beach, kids will love relaxing on the beach. Make sure you bring shovels and buckets to enjoy more sand.
Birdwatching and Learning
Birdwatching is fun for both adults and young. You can easily turn it fun for kids and this will bring a lot of learning to them. Do not forget to pack the best binoculars to birdwatching to admire the beauty so close.
You better come with a bird field guide and choose the best destination to watch more bird species. And here, it is very important to visit each campsite in the best time under the right climate. With good timing and planning you can see migratory bird species too.
There are always birds around national parks and kids will love and find them easy to spot. So as a part of admiring nature, teach them to watch birds around. Here we suggest some best places for birdwatching.
- Acadia National park
- Big Bend National Park
- Death Valley National Park
- Grand Canyon National Park
- Yellowstone National Park
Play Games- Best Camping Games for Preschoolers
One of the best ways you can make the campsite more fun for kids is engage them with camping games. There are so many camping games and pick the best team plays for preschoolers.
To keep your kids active, you can plan for the best camping games with them. These activities are important for kids to increase their engagement and build up teamwork. Especially when outdoors, games can bring more joy.
Games are not only for kids, everyone can take part and enjoy especially while you are camping. Camping Bingo is one of the best games to play with kids. And if you want to make kids more engaged, you can involve them in games like Map maze. This is so much fun as you get a map and the directions to find treasure.
Not just these, there are many games you can enjoy outdoors including Spoons, Simon says, Obstacle course, Hide and seek, ping pong shooters, Flag capture and also like card games, board games etc.
Nature walks to make kids love Nature
Being a nature kid is as important as today. Getting to nature is difficult with screen additions and instant pleasures. Nature brings benefits to all regardless of age. And for little learners, there are so many benefits towards physical, emotional and mental wellbeing. For a child’s development, nature commits a lot.
When you plan for camping activities for preschoolers, remember to include nature walks. You can teach them what type of things to admire outdoors and spot around while camping. Nature is a new learning chapter and gives them the chance to explore!
While having nature walks, kids can learn things in nature. They can learn colors, learn to count and collect memories when having nature walks. This is highly important to enhance creativity and performance of kids making them good learners for the future too.
Nature walks for kids can turn to lessons and games too. Think like you are taking preschoolers to the campsite to cover up a nature lesson, a walk in nature is a good way to work it. Or else, you can play games with kiddos while walking in nature. However you connect with nature that will bring fun and learning at the same time.
Water Activities for Preschoolers while Camping
Fun in the water is a great activity both kids and adults love. Water activities are the best to stay hydrated and shielded from extreme heat when you are going camping in hot weather conditions. With this you can bear heat and have extreme fun too. If you are camping near a lake, beach or near any water source, it will be so relaxing for you and your kids. If not, you can make your place fun with a lot of water activities. I personally love kids getting involved in kids’ pools, water balloons, and water bucket relay-like activities to keep them fun and active.
The water outside is fresh, cold, and seems really good to go. In the most of the camping sites, you can find number of activities to engage. Additionally, you can bring your things like plastic pool, water guns, and etc. for more activities. And do not forget to add sponge water bombs to your list which is too fun to handle.
Not just fun in the water, these games will improve the skills of your little learners. Water games are fun in teams. So you can make your kiddos play in teams, enhancing team spirits. There are so many games to play with water while camping but check whether you are choosing safe water games for preschoolers and what you can easily manage with.
Camping Crafts for kids
We find camping themed lessons for kids at schools and never miss the chance for camping crafts. So how fun would that be when you do it at the camping ground?
Nature arts and crafts are so much entertaining and you can keep kids sitting and drawing for a considerable time. This is so much useful when family camping too as you can make your kid sit and do crafts until the tent is ready or getting the bonfire ready.
Kids may already have stones and pieces of sticks collected in hikes and nature walks. So it is now the time to paint and do crafts. This is so much fun and kids love all the mess they can make. Keep all crafts and arts as memories and kids will enjoy seeing them when they grow as real campers.
Camping crafts are not just for fun but for so many little things to learn. For all kids, crafts are fun to engage in and will enhance overall creativity. Good learners are creative and love to experiment, so isn’t this the place to start?
Dig in the dirt- it is all your playtime
The real part of being a kid and a camper is the chance to get dirty and unlimited fun. I have no idea why, but kids love digging around. So make sure you pack shovels and buckets along with the kids camping essentials.
You can bring toys to the campsite and that will make the dig site’s joy doubles for sure. You can simply make this one activity for your preschoolers while camping leaving them to relax just as they desired. On the other way, this again improves teamwork making kids happy inside out.
Why Camping Activities for Preschoolers?
A lot of studies have witnessed the benefits one could gain by spending time outdoors in a natural environment. Especially for kids, camping helps so much to their well-being. Younger people are of different ages and everyone can have fun in nature. We here aim at preschoolers making them fast learners in the future and true admirers of nature.
So make camping an environmental lesson for preschoolers and try cool camping activities. Below are some of the top benefits you will be rewarded.
- A lot of health benefits with immunity boost and fixing up the moods
- Will teach the basic survival skills including how to safely travel, build a fire, plants good to touch or eat and what is not outdoor safety and so much more
- Improve learning skills with the chance to explore nature on their own
- Build self-esteem by teaching them how to be competent in their environment
- Give chance to new adventures and challenges
- Unplug from technology addicts and bring to nature’s spirits
- Improves the connection with family and friends with teamwork
- Build up respect to nature to admire the beauty, start loving and make no harm to pristine nature
- Make kids love to learn and engage in new things
What’s more to consider when kids are camping?
Planning to take kids out; there are many things to consider from picking the place, when to visit and what to pack. Especially when you want your preschoolers to have an adventure day at a camping site, you should start planning a long before.
Kids are more sensitive to nature and you have to make the right camping destination. The best advice is to camp where you know the best and leaves no chance for risks. Here are some best destinations for kids camping.
- Acadia National Park, ME
- Yellowstone National Park, CA
- Voyageurs National Park, MN
- Capitol Reef National Park, UT
- Dry Tortugas National Park, FL
- Redwood National Park, CA
When deciding a time for your visit, look for the best weather. Make sure you take time with campsite facilities open and good weather there. Get kids ready with raincoats, shoes, clothes, swimwear, and essentials before camping. Make sure to pack first aid as you take kiddos out for an adventurous day.
Additionally, you can pack a plastic swimming pool, shovels, buckets, and toys if needed. To make crafts like activities, get ready with paints, pencils, and all stuff.
Happy camping with kids!