Nature-Based Learning Activities for Kids During Family Camping

Rock collection can be an engaging and educational way for children to gain insight into geology. Encourage them to display their rocks and examine each one, noting their distinctive features and highlighting any similarities.

Identification of plants can be an engaging way for kids to learn about biodiversity. Use a plant scavenger hunt checklist or play botanical bingo for maximum participation!

1. Take a Nature Walk

An easy and accessible way to integrate learning into family camping trips is incorporating nature walks. Additionally, this activity offers kids a fun opportunity to get outside while exercising while spending quality time with their loved ones.

Make your hike an educational experience by helping your children identify plants, animals and insects they encounter along the path. This will enable them to take more pride in the natural surroundings surrounding their home while strengthening appreciation of it.

Make sure to find time from your busy schedule of work & playing slot games on and take the activity even more educational by having your children search nature for items beginning with each letter of the alphabet, helping them practice pre-writing skills and letter recognition. A great educational activity would be finding the state flower, tree or bird for their area – that will improve pre-writing abilities as well as letter recognition!

2. Leaf Art

Leaf art is an engaging outdoor learning and art activity for kids that will introduce them to color, shapes, and texture. Simply have them pick some leaves from the ground and arrange them on muslin material, before using construction paper as canvasses to pound out prints with a hammer – creating beautiful leaf print art pieces!

Kids can create nature rubbings using watercolor paper, crayons and colorful nature items like berries, dirt or certain flowers; leaves might prove more challenging.

Add math to this activity by counting acorns, pinecones and other items from nature – it’s truly remarkable what subjects can be taught using natural objects!

3. Scavenger Hunt

Scavenger hunts can help children work together as part of a team while also developing observational skills which can aid their learning experience.

This outdoor scavenger hunt includes fun and engaging clues such as cloud-watching and whistling with grass to engage children’s senses and get them moving! For an added challenge, this sensory hunt asks kids to find things they can jump over, crawl under or roll across.

An environmental scavenger hunt can be an engaging and engaging way to introduce children to environmental stewardship. Have your kids collect leaves, sticks and rocks before using these materials in art projects such as glueing them onto cardboard for animal shapes or creating mandalas with them. Building shelter with nature materials should always follow safety regulations at a campsite.

4. Build a Forest

Nature provides an amazing learning environment. To facilitate outdoor education, simply provide opportunities for children to play in nature – this may take place at formal settings like schoolyards or playgrounds or nature centers, as well as informal settings like backyards, park trails or camping spots.

Plant identification can be an engaging way for kids to explore nature-based learning. Allowing children to collect plant samples or photographs (in an ethical and responsible manner, of course) sparks their curiosity while building observational skills while creating an admiration of all that surrounds them.

Make this activity even more interactive by creating tree identification games such as scavenger hunts or bingo for plant recognition. Kids may also keep a plant journal to record their discoveries, drawing pictures or writing descriptions of various species they see.

5. Listening Walk

Listening walks are a wonderful way for children to explore nature. These walks allow children to become aware of the sounds in their environment and encourage them to ask questions about what they hear.

Have your children read The Girl Goes on a Listening Walk With Her Father and Dog and then discuss all of the sounds she hears while traversing different areas of town.

Provide your children with a bag or container to collect rocks in and encourage them to search for rocks of various shapes, sizes, and colors. Encourage them to label each rock with its name and place of discovery so they can better understand geological processes and characteristics associated with various rock types. Make sure they also create a display for their collection!

6. Animal Tracks

An effective way to discover the local wildlife at a campsite is by studying animal tracks. Tracks become easier to detect after rain as mud gives better impressions of prints. Be sure to search both front and hind feet, counting toes and claw marks on both feet.

Some mammals can be hard to spot, and you might need to search hard for their tracks. Others leave distinctive footprints like those left by raccoons (with five toes and heel prints like human handprints), Fox and Coyote tracks resemble those left by dogs but narrower with three pads per foot, Rabbits hop or members of the Weasel Family such as Otters, Fishers and Minks run quickly away from you when approached.

Children who enjoy nature-based learning activities will also love our animal track cards, which feature pictures of animals commonly found camping areas. This activity works particularly well when combined with our nature name activity in which kids must locate objects in nature that correspond with each letter on a card.

7. Hike

Hiking is a central component of many family camping trips, providing exercise while appreciating nature. Hiking is also an invaluable educational tool – learning new facts while immersing oneself in natural landscapes around you is never boring!

Encourage your children to use the camera they already own when out hiking or exploring campsites to capture plants and animals they see, creating lasting memories with this simple yet fun task.

If you’re camping somewhere where there’s clear views of the stars, make stargazing part of your camping activities with your kids. It’s an easy and educational activity that provides them with an opportunity to learn about constellations and planets!

8. Nature Photography

Kids love creating art, and nature provides ample inspiration. Engaging children in art-inspired play activities outdoors can help foster motor skills development, creativity, social interactions and self-esteem building.

Use a magnifying glass to explore and study the shapes and textures of leaves, twigs, flowers and barks. Kids can create art using these natural elements by tracing, coloring and stamping them onto paper.

Craft a nature scavenger hunt to engage kids with their surroundings at your campsite and get them exploring. Write out a list with items such as yellow flowers, sticks with bark on them or seasonal wildflowers as part of the list.

Nature and math go hand-in-hand, providing preschoolers with an exciting sensory activity to count pine cones, sticks, berries and flowers while at the same time counting pine needles, sticks, berries and flowers in this fun counting activity. Ask preschoolers to illustrate what they see, smell, touch taste or hear while engaging in this sensory game. Conduct an outdoor learning experiment in this cool outdoor learning activity! Explore which objects float or sink by sending kids on an object hunt collecting items they can put in water!

9. Nature Art

Use items found in nature for artistic projects that will bring joy. For instance, twigs collected while out hiking can be turned into fairy and wizard wands with beads, feathers and colorful leaves added.

Create a nature table using items collected during your camping trip and set it up in your home for future learning and play. This activity helps children learn about their environment as they discover how rocks, leaves, pine cones and twigs come to exist in nature.

Create a flower mandala out of flowers and other items found during your camping trip to practice mindfulness skills with your little ones, or create a mason jar sun catcher using items like twigs, flowers and berries from nature to gain more knowledge about our world! These fun camping crafts from Rhythms of Play provide another excellent way to learn about what’s out there!

10. Nature Scavenger Hunt

Nature scavenger hunts provide children with an enjoyable way to interact with and discover their natural environment, not to mention it’s simply fun!

Bring Joy offers an outstanding free printable nature scavenger hunt for kids that’s simple to print and use, perfect for use during outdoor playtime. Time it for added challenge or keep it laid back – kids can even keep scorecards to show off their finds!

Another great activity to engage children in is going on a bird or bug scavenger hunt, while also exploring and identifying rocks along the beach.

If you are camping near a river, lake, sea or pond, have your kids explore its shores for shells, pebbles and interesting twigs that they can decorate their gold crowns with. Children also love participating in an insect scavenger hunt where they search for different kinds of bugs which they then learn how to name and observe with magnifying glasses.