Camping Storytime with a ‘Night Animals’ Inspired Craft
As a child, I loved camping. My family and I had many wonderful adventures camping together. I also enjoyed special camp outs with my girl scout troop growing up, and fun overnights while I was at summer camp. I have to confess though- as an introverted child with a vivid imagination, camping could definitely raise some fears for me. Especially in the dark, my active mind could turn even the smallest noises into something frightening. I don’t want my boys to feel the same anxiety when camping. These camping storytime book picks are perfect for easing worries and making camping fun. Plus I’m sharing a few cool extension ideas to keep the story time fun going!
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Camping Storytime Choices
Caillou Goes Camping by Roger Harvey
Some parents may not be fans of the tv show centered around this (ok, I’ll just say it- whiney!) preschooler. However, I’ve always been a fan of the books. Their bright, clear illustrations are engaging, and the text is generally a reassuring social story for young audiences. In this volume, Caillou and his grandpa enjoy a fun camp out adventure together.
Good Night, Sleep Tight, Don’t Let the Bedbugs Bite by Diane deGroat
#thebigone is always a fan of deGroat’s books about Gilbert. He’s enjoyed them even more since he’s started school, as I think he is really able to identify with the classroom and friend dynamics represented. Gilbert faces his fears in this fun story- the perfect example for my boys!
Camping Out by Heather Amery & Stephen Cartwright
Books from Usborne have been popular for years, and seem to becoming even more loved in recent months. This slightly older story is a quick, fun tale of 2 young campers who hear a noise outside their tent. The book addresses the idea of a noise outside in a light, non-threatening way, making it great for young kids.
Night Animals by Gianna Marino
This story shares such a fun twist on the idea of the noises you hear outside at night. The illustrations are fun and quirky, and personality shines through on all of the nocturnal creatures. The frightened night animals help present the classic ‘they’re more scared of you than you are of them’ adage in a silly way that kids love.
Shine A Light On Night Animals!
Here’s a fun, easy art project that lets kid’s explore the idea of discovering nocturnal animals like those in the book.
- Flashlight and night animal printables. (See below!)
- Crayons, colored pencils, or markers.
- Brass fastener.
- Thumbtack or pin. (Optional, but definitely helpful! Adult supervision a must, obviously!)
- Print out 1 of each sheet. (See below!)
- Color animal sheet and flashlight sheet.
- Cut out animal circle.
- Cut out flashlight overlay.
- Use thumbtack to poke a small hole in the center of each cut out, on the grey dot.
- Poke brass fastener through hole in flashlight page, and then through animals page, stacking together. Open brass fastener to secure.
- Enjoy spinning the animal circle and ‘discovering’ the nocturnal animals!
Camping Storytime Counting
Here’s a simple math activity inspired by a perennial camping favorite. It’s a great hands on way to practice counting. As a bonus, the threading action is also perfect for strengthening fine motor skills!
- Printable Camp Out Counting sheet. (See below!)
- 12 brown pipe cleaners. (Or 6- see #3).
- Scissors. (Optional- you can cut 6 pipe cleaners in half, rather than using 11 full size ones).
- 55 white plastic pony beads.
- Print a copy of Camp Out Counting sheet. (See below!)
- Assemble additional materials.
- Cut pipe cleaners in half, if desired.
- Start counting ‘marshmallows’ and adding them to each ‘stick’!
- Add the number of marshmallows on each stick to the right in the # column, and a check in the ‘done’ column when each skewer is complete.
- Laminating your printable is optional, but will produce a sturdier learning tool that can be used repeatedly. Numbers can be written with dry erase marker to make it easy to reuse.
- Feeling hungry? Try the same activity using real marshmallows and pretzel sticks instead!
Does your family go camping? What is your family’s favorite part about camping out?
Grab Your Printables!
Check out what the other bloggers have come up with below: