On June 22, 2019 all across the country families will be camping out in their backyards as part of the Great American Campout! Explore the wonderful world of camping with young children either as a family or in your classroom. Check out the resources on this page for tips and tricks.
Join the Great American Campout on June 22nd and pitch a tent in your backyard. Play games, stargaze, and connect with each other and with nature. First time camping? Your backyard is a perfect place to start. It is familiar and close to bathrooms (and beds if needed!). Experienced campers? The backyard is still fun! Children love when the ordinary becomes extraordinary! Pitch a tent, build a campfire, and watch their eyes shine.
For the classroom:
Can’t take your class camping on June 22nd, that’s okay! You can go pretend ‘camping’ in your schoolyard! Pitch a tent or tents, gather camping supplies and go camping for the day. If you can, have a campfire and roast marshmallows, make s’mores or hobo packs, sit around and tell stories. If you can’t have a real fire, build a pretend one to sit around and share stories. Ask kids to share if they have ever gone camping. What did they do? Where did they sleep? What did they eat? Talk about what camping is. Provide backpacks, binoculars, fishing poles (no hooks) and other camping gear and activities. Let their imaginations take them on a wonderful adventure!
Backyard camping ideas (backyard and schoolyard!):
Go on a scavenger hunt
Sing campfire songs
Watch for wildlife (what lives in your backyard? Schoolyard?)
Gaze at the stars
Watch the clouds
Make explorer walking sticks (cover stick with doubled-sided tape, children stick objects they find to it)