Honey Pot is 4 years old.
Little M&M is 2 years old.
We did several activities in the week leading up to the kids' first camping trip. First, we borrowed the following books from the library.
I picked up a new set of kid tongs at Target and wanted to include them in our unit this week. Thinking about our upcoming s'mores treat, I decided to have Honey Pot transfer marshmallows. She was only too happy to oblige, because she knew she'd get to taste one when she was done!
There were so many wonderful printables to suit our theme this week. First up, we nabbed some prewriting practice and pattern completion from Homeschool Creations for Honey Pot:
Next, I printed a few printables from 2 Teaching Mommies' Camping Unit and Forest Unit. Some more prewriting:
...shadow matching, for both Little M&M and Honey Pot:
...these fun animal track puzzles, for both kids:
I gave Little M&M two pieces that fit together, just so he could do one puzzle at a time as well as work on animal recognition. He knows all of these forest creatures!
Honey Pot was able to complete the puzzles when all pieces were in front of her at once.
...and then some Which is Different worksheets for Honey Pot:
And finally, I printed this I-Spy game from 1+1+1=1. Originally it had words describing what to search for. But Honey Pot can't read yet, so I just revised the page for her using pictures instead.
Campfire Chalk Activity
I drew a campfire on the driveway with sidewalk chalk, and talked to the kids a little bit about campfire safety. For example, a safe distance to stand away from it and what to do if your clothing catches fire. We also talked about how water can put the fire out. So the kids tried to put the fire out with their squirt bottles.
When spraying didn't work, they just dumped their water bottles over it completely. We had to refill a couple of times to put the chalk fire out all the way. But they loved this!
Then Honey Pot demonstrated how to Stop, Drop and Roll.
...a few times. I'm glad she has mastered the material!
I recently started a nature journal with Honey Pot, something I'd been itching to do for a while! She continued her journal with some camping activities. First, a couple of sticker stories! She put a few stickers on a page, and I transcribed the story she told about them.
Sticker story #2:
Then we used one more sticker, and I asked her to draw the forest around this moose.
She did a few trees before she wanted to move on.
Flashlight Star Search
Next we did a hunt for numbers. I wrote down numbers onto star sticky notes, and placed them around a room. Now that she can count by tens to 100, I felt she needed to learn how to recognize the numbers in between! So there was one number from each of the tens (i.e. 21, 32, 43, etc.).
Then I flipped off the light and invited Honey Pot to go star-gazing with me, in search of these numbers.
In order to figure out the numbers each time, she had to count to 100 by tens. Next time I think we'll bring in a list of these numbers so she doesn't have to recite them all. Definitely glad we're working on this!
For our last pre-camping activity we did a campfire craft. First some scissor practice, as Honey Pot cut her own strips of red, orange and yellow construction paper.
Then she glued some sticks onto a piece of black constructions paper, which I had glued to a piece of cardboard for stability.
More pattern practice! We placed the flames in this order: yellow, orange, orange, red.
Then she added some star stickers, because it was nighttime!
Add a marshmallow on a stick, for s'mores! Awesome!
Activities While Camping
Of course camping doesn't need to have structured activities. The kids stay entertained with hiking, fishing, throwing stones into the stream, playing on the playground, driving their toy trucks around the rough terrain, running around like maniacs...to name a few. But I wanted to make sure they didn't get bored. So I offered a few tricks too.
- Glowsticks or mini flashlights at night
- Using a bucket and shovel to collect rocks, pinecones, sticks, etc. and then count them up
- Tree-rubbings in their nature journals
- Making observations and hypotheses about the holes in the leaves (was it the very hungry caterpillar?)
- Homemade playdough to play with outside using natural materials
- Card games (Go Fish, Old Maid, and our newest storytelling game called Tell Tale)
Nature Journal, revisited
We did one final entry in Honey Pot's nature journal to wrap up our camping unit. I printed out a fun template from KidSparkz and glued it into her journal. Then I invited her to color it in and draw a picture of her favorite part of our camping trip. She's not very keen on coloring, but I sure love her picture of a campfire and roasted marshmallow!
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