Category Archives: Activities

Teaching Foraging For Kids

blackberries-Foraging For Kids

Teach Kids To Forage

Importance Of Teaching Foraging For Kids

Foraging for kids-Parents Bushcraft

Foraging for kids-parents bushcraft

I am often asked about foraging and children. I look back at how I learned about foraging. It was a natural part of growing up, as I walked around the countryside with my parents and some other adults they would point out plants and berries. I would be encouraged to try them, and I learned what I could eat as a snack when I was outdoors. When I was out playing I didn’t want to run home for snacks, so I would find my own. During part of my life I stopped learning, but what I learned quickly returned and some had never left. To this day I still don’t eat much chocolate and prefer nuts and berries.

Nutrition and diet is seen as an important part of all our lives. Foraging is a skill that is important today as it has been in the past. Snacks in a child’s daily routine can play an important role to help manage their hunger and assist in boosting their nutrition. If people time snacks well it can not only help to manage hunger, it can also help provide a much-needed energy boost between meals.

Often, we see adults and children growing bored of the same so called healthy snacks, expensive punnets of fruit, bread sticks. These foods are often processed, flown many miles and sprayed with insecticides. With a little knowledge you can provide healthy snacks that can be found all around us and are seasonally fresh, containing many vitamins, nutrients and minerals. Plus, they are all free.

Bushcraft For Kids Summer Adventure Challenge

Summer Adventure Challenge

Bushcraft For Kids Summer Adventure Challenge

Summer Adventure Challenge

Bushcraft For Kids Summer Adventure Challenge

Summer is here and our children are looking for adventure and Excitement, The Bushcraft For Kids Summer challenge will give children just that. There are some simple silly things to do like splashing in puddles or making mud pies through to adventures for children to do with there parents or a suitable adult. You can adapt the activities to incorporate other skills if you prefer, for example, star gazing can be used to introduce night time navigation. How to find North at night.

Sleeping under the stars is one activity in the Bushcraft for Kids Summer Adventure Challenge. I believe this is something all children should experienc with a parent. It can be a magical experience sleeping under the stars. If it is your first time or you have young children you might want to sleep in the garden. Then you are near the toilets and if there is a change in the weather you could make a hasty retreat indoors. I would always recommend retreating and waiting for a dry night because you dont want to put your child off camping out and have them miss out on the wonders this world has to offer.

All your child needs to do is complete the activity then right the date they achieved it. Please leave comments below and post pictures of your children having fun and completing the challenges. There will be some spot prizes for children in the UK . These will be chosen at random. To enter all you need to do is sign up for our newsletter the winners will be published in that. If your name appears all you need to do is send an email and claim your prize.

Download the challenge below.

 

Below is an additional challenge. Any parents can set it for their children or it can be used by Beaver and Cub groups to gain the Personal Challenge Award.

Additional Challenge.

At the end of the download sheets you will find a challenge for children to keep their bedroon tidy over the summer holidays. Under that is another challenge, with a picture with question marks on it. The challenge is blank. It is there for parents to set a personal challenge for their child. This should be a challenge that is individual to the child. It should offer a challenge but be realistic. The child needs to know exactly what the challenge is, any boundaries and that it is achievable.

These challenges are sufficient for beavers and cubs to achieve the Personal challenge award, but is also a fun way to address any challenges in a childs life.

Observation, Memory, Concentration, Skills For Tracking and Life

kim tracking observation skills

Essential Skills For Tracking And Life

Observation, Memory, Concentration

In a previous post I spoke about improving observation skills and gave some tips that can help not just children, but adults as well to develop their memory (Observation Skills, What to teach your children,) In this post is a game that is named after the character who played the game to improve his observation and memory skills. The book is Kim by Rudyard Kipling in 1901 and the game is “Kim’s Game.” It is a book that is well worth reading. These are skills for tracking and life.

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I always say it is important to get our children outdoors, but sometimes we cant. So here is a game that can be played anywhere, indoors and out

Improving memory, observation and concentration skills are  vital for all people especially children. It is beneficial for their education, learning about wildlife and nature and skills that are great everyday life skills, that can help keep us all safe.

Secret Stuff (Being A Spy)- Bushcraft For Kids Children activities, spy kit

Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff

Secret Stuff (Being A Spy)-Bushcraft For Kids

Children activities, spy kit

 

As a Child I loved the idea of being a spy sneaking about following people, a secret identification, gadgets, adventure and subterfuge. For most people it ends as a they grow up into adulthood. I was lucky (In my opinion) I went into the police and ended up working in a department called Special Ops as an Undercover Police Officer. I used a secret identity, used gadgets and had what you could call have adventures. Here is a children activities, spy kit

You may wonder what this has to do with nature and bushcraft. One of the main over laps is tracking, making sure you aren’t followed and being able to follow other people. I spent a lot of time outdoors and no matter where I was I was aware of nature all around me, at times when I was bored I watched what was going on around me.

Children activities, spy kit

I was asked by a boy in a Beaver Group I am a leader of whether I could teach them anything about being a spy.

Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff, Children activities, spy kit

Bushcraft For Kids Getting Children Outdoors. Secret Stuff learn new skills

So we looked at animals and nature, all the different signs/spoor that animals leave that tell a story. Not just that they were there but also what they were doing, the same can be done with people. But what is most important is that the children are getting outdoors, learning, about people, animals and new skills whilst having adventure. Here is a Children activities, spy kit. Whilst children are doing this they are also releasing their creativity that will help with problem solving skills.

Each element can be completed in isolation, or as one spy workshop with one or more children. Instructions or each element of the Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff (Being A Spy) can be found on the download page or on the pages of the actual download. Once you have made a spy kit you should encourage your children to go outside and play with the Kit.

Along side making this kit it is a  good idea to teach laying a trail and what symbols that can be used to direct someone to a message or to know exactly where you have been. Included is an additional download that will give you a set of symbols children can learn and use with friends. There are a variety of ways to lay the trail using either, stones, sticks, chalk or a combination of all three.

 

CypherWheel- Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff

Build a Cypher Wheel

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff

How to Send Coded Messages To Other People

Making this simple Cypher Wheel enables someone to send secret messages.

  1. Download PDF.
  2. Print out the download.
  3. Cut out the two disks and fasten them together with a pin or split pin through the middle.
ID Card Template – Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff

Credit Card ID Template

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff.

Download the file and follow the instructions and make your secret ID Card that looks like a credit card. To complete the task at home you will also need some clear sticky plastic to cover the card with.

Spy Tail Log Book – Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff

Spy Trail/Tracking Log Book.

Bushcraft for Kids – Secret Stuff

Download and print out this Log book. Then you can keep record of anything that is of importance or relevance to what you are doing as a spy. Whether you are tracking people or animals keeping a record of what you do and see. You can fasten these pages together with staples or piece of string. Alternately keep it in a file.

You don’t need to record everything directly into this log. I would recommend carrying a little notebook and pencil with you all the time. You then can record anything that you want to then put in your Spy Trail Log. You can also record any plants, animals, footprints in this book along with any ideas you have. This means you are less likely to forget things. Using a pencil you can also draw things you want to look up later alternatively you can take a small sample and press it flat until you get an opportunity to look it up in a book or online later.

THIS SHOULD BE POSTED DOUBLE SIDED ON YOUR PRINTER

Spy-Doku-Bushcraft For Kids Secret Stuff

Spy-Doku

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff.

This is a fun puzzle involving logic and code breaking skills. It isn’t the easiest puzzle, it is something to be completed with the assistance of a parent.

Spy Through A Keyhole

Build A Fisheye Keyhole Vision Tool

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff.

This is a very simple tool that was used in the past prior to the invention of fibre optic technology. However this technology is not available to children. This tool can be used to check for movement in a room and isn’t suitable for identification.

Invisible Ink Bushcraft Secrets

Invisible Ink Bushcraft Secrets

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff

Invisible ink bushcraft secrets, is a great way for children to learn new skills whilst, experiment and learn to improve what they are working on. Download this guide to find out how to make the ink and use it effectively.

How To Make And Use Fingerprint Powder

How To Make And Use Fingerprint Powder

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff

Simple methods how to make dark contrast fingerprint powder. Children love to collect fingerprints using simple methods. Take care though some methods use candles and heating porcelain bowls. Care should be taken and children should be supervised by a responsible adult at all times.

Free additional tracking download.

Track and Trailing The Secret Way

Tracking and Trailing

Bushcraft For Kids – Secret Stuff

Using tracking and Trailing is a way that was initially taught in the UK by Lord Baden Powell. Using these symbols and signs mean you can lead someone to follow your trail, find messages and much more.  It teaches children to use sign in a positive way and learn skills that help children develop skills that enable them to follow and observe animals and nature.

Laying a trail for others to follow enables children to understand what sign/spoor can be left in the open and hidden away. By using sticks, stones and chalk or a combination of any of these shows a child that signs and marks can be left lots of different ways, some seen openly others hidden away. They can lead friends whilst leaving messages and other information for them to find along the way.

As children learn this they are learning about nature and how animals leave signs about where they have been and where they are going as well as what they have done along the way.

 

 

 

Bushcraft Knots, How To Tie Clove Hitch, Timber Hitch And Tripod Lashing

Clove Hitch

Bushcraft Knots Clove Hitch, Timber Hitch and Tripod Lashing

Bushcraft Knots

The term “Bushcraft Knots” is a title I have creates. It is to label some knots that can be used in bushcraft and survival skills. There is no specific set of knots that fit this category. The Clove hitch and Timber Hitch are easy to tie and useful to fasten rope or cordage to something temporarily. They use friction to keep tight so if you use finished wood like in the videos you will find they sometimes slip. That doesn’t mean you haven’t tied the knot correctly it is just that the wood is so smooth there is not a lot of friction.

These are two good bushcraft knots to teach children because they are quite easy, especially the Timber Hitch. When tying a clove Hitch you will find an explanation on the net how to tie the knot making loops. This is “easier”, but  can cause problems. If someone needs to tie the knot, and the loops can’t slip over the end, the knot can’t be tied. So a little more practice to tie the Clove Hitch using this method means you can tie it in any situation.

These bushcraft knots are useful to start building Bushcraft Shelters, dens and equipment and tools around your camp

 

After watching these videos please subscribe to the Bushcraft For Kids YouTube channel here

Clove Hitch

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Timber Hitch

 

Tripod Lashing

Trees Identification, Leaf Hunt Challenge

Tree Identification, A Bushcraft Essential

To be able to practice bushcraft, there are a few essential skills you need to know to be able to practice the skills you learn. Tree identification is a bushcraft essential. It is only by knowing what resources are out there that we can learn to live with nature. Below you will find a Free Leaf Hunt Sheet. Children like to find leaves and learning what different trees are means they can then take part in other out door activities, whether it is making fire, cooking, making fish traps, traps and snares, tools and utensils for use around a camp. Not only can wood be used to burn as fuel it can be used as cordage, it can be carved, it can be used to make soap or even pain relief.

Next time you go for a walk take the sheet and have a leaf hunt. here are a few different ways to make learning about trees fun for children. I have met young people who believe milk is from the Supermarket and some that didn’t even realise that lamb came from an animal never mind young sheep. I have seen one girl try and reach out and touch a sheep, after seeing one for the first time. I don’t want to think of children not knowing what nature has to offer and the wonders that are on our doorsteps.

  1. On the walk choose one tree that you want to learn about. Then go out and try and find it. Then try and find different uses of the tree. Whether it is the leaves, bark, wood or even roots.
  2. Go out and try and find all the trees together, or a selection of the trees.
  3. Have a competition who can find most of the trees.
  4. With very young children collecting leaves is great fun.

 

 

Tree Identification and their bushcraft Uses

Grey Willow.

Silver Birch.

Hazel.

English Oak.

Alder Buckthorn.

Common Beech.

Lime.

Sweet Chestnut.