Download the camping week planning guide for simple, hands-on play and learn ideas to use at home or in your preschool classroom!
Fishing Lines: Work on letters in the alphabet while fishing! Draw simple fishing poles with chalk on the driveway or sidewalk. Draw the same number of fish across from the fishing poles. On each fishing pole, write a letter. On each fish, write the same letters. Use chalk to draw the fishing line from the pole to the fish to match the letters!
Tent Roll & Color: Print the camping tent page. Write one number on each camping tent. Find dice to use with this activity. Write the numbers 1-6 on each tent. Roll the die, identify the number, and color in the tent with the matching number on it. Or if your preschooler is working on number formation, leave the camping tents blank. Roll the die, identify the number, and then write that number inside on one tent. You can also use 2 dice, add the numbers together, and color in the matching camping tent for an extra challenge.
Catching Fireflies: Spread yellow pom poms or cotton balls around the table as pretend fireflies. Use kid-friendly squeezers (or even clothespins) to catch and pick-up one firefly pom pom at a time. Drop each on into a jar. Count to see how many you were able to catch!
Flashlight Hunt: Turn off the lights and grab a flashlight. Small flashlights can be found for $1.00 at Walmart and the dollar store that are the perfect size for preschool hands. Give a direction about what to find. This could be to look for something that is red, something that is smaller than a sneaker, the letter S, etc. Turn on your flashlight and start looking! Shine the light on the object when it is found.
Toasted Marshmallow: Blow up balloon to act as an oversized marshmallow. Spread out in a circle. The object of the game is to keep the marshmallow balloon from touching the ground. And because the marshmallow is hot from being toasted over the campfire, you don’t want to touch it for too long. Keep it up by tapping it with your hand, foot, or other body part!
On a Hike Draw & Paint: Pretend you were camping and went on a hike in the woods. What did you see while you were exploring? Use a black Sharpie marker to draw the animals, trees, and other things you saw. Then use watercolor paints to paint your drawings. Tell the story of what you saw while on your hike while explaining what is going on in your picture!
Sleeping Bag Slide: Layout a sleeping bag on the floor, but don’t go to sleep! Instead, choose a few toys or objects around the room to see which items you are able to slide around on the sleeping bag. Place one item on the middle of the sleeping bag, hold on to the end of the sleeping bag, and pull! Try to predict which objects will be easy to slide around on the sleeping bag and which will be more difficult. Try adding more than one object at a time to see what happens!
Hot Dog Hop: Print the hot dog page and write a number on each hotdog. Cut out the hot dogs and place them around the floor. Each time you come up to a hot dog, identify the number on the hot dog and then jump over the hot dog that many times. Keep jumping until you get through all of the hot dogs on the floor. Then mix up the hot dogs and play again!
Camping Color Hunt: Print the camping color hunt page. Add the page to a clipboard and find crayons or markers. Walk around outside and look for different colors. Every time you find a color, use that color crayon to color in one of the binoculars on the page. Find another color and color the next binoculars that color. For added fun, make binoculars out of paper towel tubes to use while out on your camping color hunt!
Stick Painting: Head outside to find different sized sticks. Bring your collection back inside and use the sticks to paint a fun picture! Add paint to cups and dip the ends of the sticks in the paint and then draw and paint on your paper. Look at the differences between the thickness of lines that each stick makes. Criss cross the colors with the sticks to mix the paint to make new colors. Display your stick painting when it is complete!
Go Fish: Play Go Fish with a deck of playing cards. For beginners, take out the kings, queens, jacks, and aces and just play with the number cards. Consider holding a smaller number of cards in your hand or lay the cards flat on the table for preschoolers who cannot yet hold cards in their hands.
Make S’mores: Making s’mores does not only have to happen with a fire! Alternate ways would be to toast marshmallows over an outdoor grill or just use the microwave! To use the microwave, place the s’more already built on a plate. Heat the s’more a little bit at a time (don’t let the marshmallow explode!), squish it together, and enjoy!
Download the camping theme editable planning sheet. Add learning ideas from the list below in this column or from the watermelon week activities!
Song & Game