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Camp Kids

Camp Kids

Camping with kids can be very rewarding. Find ideas about teaching children to love and respect the outdoors and camping. Find ways to keep the kids busy on the way to cam, plus games and other fun ideas to keep kids stimulated and engaged while at camp. Keep kids safe outdoors and teach them wilderness skills.
Find more great ideas for camping with kids of all ages. Visit KidsCamping.com

Things That Go Bump in the Night - Introducing Kids Night Sounds

Are you taking the kids or grandkids on a camping trip for the first time? Many parts of the campground sleeping experience will be new to your child, from the sleeping bag to the hooting of owls outside. Discussing these things in advance will allay your child's fears and help them understand that these are normal parts of the camping experience.

A number of night noises can be scary for kids when they hear them for the first time. Yipping coyotes, hooting owls, and whirring insects are worrisome noises if you don't know what they're all about. Before you take your trip, spend some time talking about the kinds of animals that live in the area you're visiting. Are there bears, coyotes, raccoons, opossums, or other animals that are active at night? Talk about the kinds of noises these animals might make and explain that this is normal for them - the animals are just out doing what they always do.

When you're talking about night noises, don't forget the smaller critters like frogs and mosquitoes. Talk about the way frogs "sing" and explain that there will be more bugs at the campground than you normally have at home. Mention other night noises that they might hear too, like semi trucks braking on the highway or fog horns blaring in the early morning on coastal inlets.

Test Runs
If you can, let your child test out their sleeping bag at home before the trip. They can use the sleeping bag in their own bed and get used to climbing in and out of it. If you'll be camping in a tent, you can pitch the tent in your back yard and do a test run, sleeping a night or two out in the tent. That will help everything seem more normal—and more fun—when the actual camping trip arrives.

Bathroom Visits
One of the most challenging things about camping is getting up in the middle of the night. There are no lights to turn on, and bathrooms can be far away. Talk in advance about what your child should do if he or she has to go to the bathroom in the night. Is there a flashlight they can have right next to their bed? Should they wake you up? Be sure to take a family trip to the bathroom right before bed, and avoid giving your child a lot of liquids in the hour or two leading up to bed time.

Be sure to follow good hiking ethics when you’re out. Always stay on the trail, and don’t take anything away with you—no flowers, rocks, or sticks. Don’t let your child run on the trail or shout, since this would disturb other hikers and wildlife. And most important of all, no littering. Pack out all of your trash, and your child will learn from your good example.

With a little preparation, your child will know what to expect when it comes to sleeping on your camping trip. Be sure to start slow, with settings that are as comfortable for your child as possible. Before you know it, you'll have worked your way up to sleeping underneath the stars!

Looking for more information and other great articles about camping with kids? KidsCamping.com has a wide variety of articles, activities, games and learning tools to inspire kids of all ages to love camping and the outdoors

Looking for more information and other great articles about camping with kids? KidsCamping.com has a wide variety of articles, activities, games and learning tools to inspire kids of all ages to love camping and the outdoors
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