While organising a family camping trip can seem daunting and stressful, it doesn’t have to be. The idea of camping is to strip away what is unnecessary and get back to basics. This includes letting go of the idea of a ‘perfect family holiday’ and taking the time to bond as a family with no distractions other than the beauty of the great outdoors.
Here are a few benefits that you can experience when camping with your kids.
One of the best things about taking your kids camping is that it ignites their sense of adventure. Unfortunately, in the day to day lives of many kids, adventure can be lacking. Between school and home, their days are mostly planned out for them. Even their downtime can be taken up with structured video games, movies, and TV shows that leave little room for adventure.
When you’re camping with your kids, all of that structure is gone. It gives them no other option than to create their own adventures and explore the world around them.
Imaginative and Creative Play
When their sense of adventure becomes reignited, that’s when kids begin to use their imagination and creativity. Having no structured activities to follow along with forces them to rely on their own imagination for entertainment.
Practising using their imagination and creative skills is extremely beneficial for children. It not only allows them to have fun but also improves their lateral thinking and problem-solving abilities which are essential tools for overcoming obstacles and challenges throughout their life.
Build Resilience and Gain Perspective
Speaking of overcoming obstacles and challenges, camping is an awesome opportunity for your child to gain perspective and build resilience. While things may be simpler out in the bush, they aren’t necessarily easier. The smallest things that can be taken for granted, such as cooking food and going to the bathroom, are no longer as easily accessible.
By learning how to get by in nature they will build resilience by being forced to keep trying when things aren’t working. They will also gain perspective, giving them a new appreciation for everything they have when they get home.
Hopefully your child will never be in a situation where they need to use survival skills, but it still never hurts to have them. There is also a lot to be said for the self-confidence that survival skills can give you. Knowing that you can survive independently with practical skills is a brilliant way to build self-worth.
Developing an appreciation and respect for nature is something that we all want to instil in our children. By getting out there and sleeping under the stars you will be giving your kids the opportunity to connect with the natural world. Establishing this connection with nature in their childhood will allow your kids to fully appreciate and enjoy the natural world throughout their entire life.
Successfully camping takes time and teamwork to pull off, which is an awesome bonding opportunity for you and your kids. Whether you’re simply setting up a tent for one night or are planning a full survivalist adventure, you and your kids will need to work together. This can improve communication, respect, and appreciation between all family members, strengthening bonds for the future.
As parents, our job is to teach our kids about the world and guide them to a point where they can navigate it on their own. While much of this is taken care of in the classroom, there are fundamental lessons about nature and respect that are best taught out in the real world. Camping will bring your little ones face to face with some of these life lessons and teach them about local flora and fauna as well as the importance of respecting and caring for our environment.
Let’s face it, many of us aren’t leading the healthiest lifestyles nowadays. It’s difficult to maintain healthy habits when work, technology, and other distractions and temptations are calling to us every day. By taking a break from all of them you and your kids will experience the health benefits that come with camping.
You’ll likely find that when camping you’re eating healthier, simpler foods, getting more exercise, taking time away from the blue light of your screens, absorbing more vitamin D, and getting away from any pollution if you live in the city. This can be a healthy reset for your body and is a great way to set new healthy habits for the whole family when you return from your trip.
Taking a Break
Taking a break from city life is not only beneficial for your physical health but your mental health as well. Camping can be a simplified version of life that allows you and your kids to take a much-needed break. Your kids can step away from social media and the pressures of school and social lives, just as you can let go of all your stressors.
Sometimes we need to take a breath and take stock. With pressures at work, home, and life in general, we can lose sight of what’s truly important – our family. Taking a break in nature is an extremely valuable experience for you and your family. While finding the time to slip away may seem impossible, making that time will bring your family closer and teach your kids valuable lessons that they can carry into adulthood.