This camping theme revolves around the adventures and activities of a camping trip. This may be your preschoolers first introduction to camping and is a wonderful time to teach campfire safety. Encourage them to practice what they have learned with classroom camping, a craft and making s'mores.
Prepare the Classroom for a Camping Theme
Bring in items that you might take on a camping trip and arrange them around the classroom:
- Small tent
- Sleeping bags
- Water jug
- Fishing poles
- Frying pans
Have your students sit in a circle as you share a story. Read "Just Me and My Dad" by Mercer Mayer. Let the children point out the grasshopper and spider on every page as you discuss the adventures of the Little Critters. When you have finished the story, ask questions. This will allow you to judge their comprehension of the story and the camping lesson. Refer back to the book to further confirm their answers.
Example questions could be:
1. What do you need to pack when you go camping?
2. What are some fun things to do while camping?
3. What are some animals, you might see while camping?
Prepare ahead of time a "campfire" to demonstrate campfire safety. Cover 10-12 paper towel tubes with brown construction paper for logs. Stack the logs to look like a campfire arrangement and hot glue them together. Wad pieces of yellow, orange and red tissue paper and glue them in between the logs. Place the campfire in the center of the circle and have the students sit around it. Discuss campfire safety and stress the following important points.
- Let a grown-up take care of the fire.
- Never run and playing near fire.
- Never poke sticks or throw things into a campfire.
- Never play with the matches used to light the fire.
- Your tent and sleeping bag should not be close to the fire.
- Do not touch or stand on the rocks or bricks around the fire. They are extremely hot!
- Let a grown-up help with roasting marshmallows.
- Leave cooking on the campfire to a grown-up, but you can make sure they remember to use potholders to touch pots and pans.
- A grown-up should put out the fire with water.
- Keep an eye out for the wind blowing sparks out of the fire.
Place a sheet over a table for a classroom tent and have the students set the campfire a safe distance from the tent using what they learned about campfire safety. Lay out a couple of sleeping bags inside the tent and let the students play and pretend.
Make a Camping Themed Craft - Binoculars!
Gather Materials Needed:
- Two toilet paper tubes
- Crayons or markers
- Masking tape
- Paper hole punch
Assemble the Binoculars:
1. Have the kids decorate two toilet paper tubes with crayons and markers.
2. Hold the tubes together. Wrap the tubes with a ring of masking tape to connect them.
3. Punch a hole on one side edge of each tube.
4. Cut a long piece of yarn and tie the ends to the holes to create a handle.
Head Outside on an Adventure!
Take the students on a nature walk. This can be done on the playground or a walk around the block. Have them look for birds, butterflies, clouds and airplanes with their binoculars.
Make A Camping Favorite - S'mores
Give each of the students two squares of graham crackers, a square of chocolate and a marshmallow in a paper bowl. Demonstrate how they should stack the s'mores.
- Graham cracker square
- Chocolate square
- Graham cracker square
Place the s'mores, one at a time, in a microwave for 30-45 seconds. The kids will enjoy watching the marshmallows puffed up through the window. Let the kids enjoy their treat... they don't need instruction for that.
This preschool camping theme is certainly going to impress the students, and teach them about camping activities and safety!