10 reasons to go camping with your kids

  1. It’s disruptive – bad patterns from home don’t come along. Whinging happens less. Working together happens more. We parents used fun and silliness more to get stuff done and kids listen more where there’s actually a real need to follow instructions (hold my hand or you might fall off this cliff, don’t go too close to the kangaroo or it might hurt you with its huge claws).
  2. Small domestic tasks become fascinating. Making up beds in a tent. Washing dishes in a camp kitchen or bucket. Finding suitable sticks to cook and poke the fire with.  The kids want to be involved in the meaningful adult activities.
  3. There’s often other kids. Friends can be made easily and parents can relax and talk to each other.  We conversed over our takeaway meal at the playground while Lou played hide and seek with an ebbing and flowing group of kids and Belle looked on in fascination.
  4. Get up close to wildlife. It’s lovely to see kangaroos bounding past your campsite or to see rainbows of parrots overhead or fish swimming in water holes. There’s a different vibe to seeing animals in captivity. Stop just observing nature and starting to be in it.
  5. Get up close to other families. How do other families pack there camping stuff? What sort of tent do they have? How do they talk to their kids? What food do they eat? Fascinating in a voyeuristic way!
  6. Live with the weather. It’s raining. You get wet. That’s ok. The sky is closer. The wind is fresher. Again, you’re ‘in’ the world, not just observing it.
  7. Learn about fire. It can burn you. It can warm you when it’s cold.  You can cook things with it that taste extra good.
  8. There’s no things, well not as many at least, so there’s no arguments about making messes and putting toys away.
  9. A sense of being in control and accomplishment from putting up shelter, preparing food, making fire, walking to the top of a mountain – lots of small wins that feel great.
  10. Have the people most important to you snuggled in close as you go to sleep with the sound of wind in the leaves and wake to a chorus of birds.

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