Fun With Kids: Camping!
So…I don’t camp. At all. In fact, I love not camping.
In my mind, I sort of get it–nature is pretty great, and I love a good hot dog & marshmallow roast as much as the next person. But the practical side of me is a major (MAJOR) wimp when it comes to things like…sleeping on the ground or coming in contact with high volumes of bugs and dirt without the ability to really REALLY wash my hands after. And, well, the idea of taking my tiny humans to try to sleep in the wilderness sounds like about as much fun as, say, a root canal.
But pretend camping? I can do pretend camping. I make a mean batch of s’mores and can play in a pop-up tent for hours with Sophie and Milo. So, for you actual campers and anyone else (like me) who love the idea of camping but not so much the actual camping, here’s a batch of books and fun ideas to do at home!
- The Bear Books. We love The Bear Wants More, The Bear Snores On, etc. They’re great social stories that provide a great opening for a conversation. Need to talk about being sick? Losing a tooth? Making a new friend? Feeling scared? Bear has you covered.
- Daddy’s Little Scout. A cute little story of a daddy and baby fox looking at all the spring homes of different animals in the woods.
- You Are My Baby: Woodland. Love these books, and the woodland version was adorable. Foxes, owls… love.
- Camp Rex. A sweet little how-to-camp book featuring… dinosaurs!
- Little Owl’s Night
- Hello, Moon!. A sweet little bedtime book. A little boy’s conversation with the moon before bed.
- Little Owl Lost. We just love this book. I returned it to the library FAR before my kids were done with it. It’s a cute story, and the owl is adorable.
- The Berenstain Bears and the Spooky Old Tree. If you want a “spooky” story for a camping night, this one is as tame as can be. This was actually one of Sophie’s favorite Halloween books and really not scary.
- Marshmallow fun! Build a marshmallow catapult or a marshmallow shooter.
- Build a fort or set up a tent or tunnel. My kids love to read books and eat “camping snacks” in a tent.
- Make a pretend fire! Lots of cute ideas for fires made from felt and made from handprints,
- Paint lightning bugs (so cute!) or make lanterns
- Read by flashlight. For some reason, this is way more fun.
- Make a bird feeder and a pair of binoculars and try looking for birds or hidden objects around the room.
- Practice making constellations with stickers or invent your own!
- Go on a nature scavenger hunt in the woods or your neighborhood
- Make a yummy treat—S’mores treats, S’mores, Hot Chocolate, Trail Mix, Larabars (Make your own!)
BUSY BOOK IDEAS:
- Campsite Coloring Page
- Bugs and Butterflies Coloring Pages via Dabbles and Babbles
- Mickey & Minnie Camping Coloring Page
We’re definitely going to have to pick up that Curious George book the next time we go to the library! My little man is obsessed with that little monkey!
Sadly, I know where your aversion to all things campish comes from. Happily, you’ve found a super fun sounding substitute that is much more doable for those of us that struggle with the bugs and dirt and nature…
But oh the adventures you are missing out on! We just bought our first travel trailer (but after many, many years of tent camping with two young busy boys) and the fun we had for a week at the beach. The dirt, the bugs, the messiness…it’s all an experience that will be remembered always!
I know! I need to suck it up and just go!
Emily- I want you to know that I love your book list posts! I just put a few of these books on hold at my library and can’t wait to read them with my boys. We checked out a few of the cooking with kids books and we made the blueberry pancakes together for Levi’s birthday. Thanks so much!