How Do Campers Protect Their Children?
Oh yes you have! Suddenly, "Where's Bobby?" You instantly realize that he is not where he is supposed to be-where you told him to stay! Little kids, and even older ones, just don't behave like they used to. Has anyone noticed that?
Since corporeal punishment of children has departed the scene, parents are left with the ominous job of establishing rules for their kids to follow using verbal communication techniques, as apposed to grandpa's "back-of-the-hand" coersion.
Kids learn how to manipulate parents from day one. This incredible talent allows them to keep stretching the leash, not realizing that parents know best. If they only had the ability at a very early age to understand why parents are so protective of them, parents could avoid headaches, ulcers, and nervous breakdowns caused by worry. But, that does not happen!
The demand for parents to watch and protect their children reaches the highest priority when there are no physical barriers, like your backyard fence, to keep them corralled.
Well then, what do you do to keep track of your children the most efficient and safest way in an outdoor camping environment? It's a little trickier out in the open countryside. You agree?
Short of roping them to a tree, parents just have to become sneaky and devious so as not to spoil their kid's new found freedom adventures. We wouldn't want to do that, would we? There are some sneaky, gentle, egregious, tearful, divine (call it what you want) ways to accomplish the mission, and go home without incident.
1. Homespun yarn to clothe the innocent:
Especially the first time that this child has ever been camping, an adult with camping experience should spend time explaining what to expect when they arrive at the campsite.
Choose from the list of things that seem important, and that you can relate to safety and protection. Attention span of small children is short, so don't dabble around. Get to the point quick. Review the rules with all the other kids as well.
2. Something everyone forgets:
One technique for insuring the return of lost children safely is not so obvious. Sewing a cloth label (having the name, address, and phone number) to the garment that the child will be wearing while camping is not a new idea, and it's a chore to do.
Do it for each child anyway. This is especially important if the child is found by strangers, is injured, and not responding.
3. Knowledge will save them:
Make every effort to teach and instruct the children of teachable age "direction finding" wherever they are. If it is 7:00 PM, the sun is in the west sky. Moss accumulates on the north side of tree trunks. And you know what I mean, right?
Show them how to use a compass and read a map. Even better, instruct them on using a GPS device, and let them carry one. If they just won't learn, then go ahead and tie them to a tree.
4. Nighttime is not necessarily sleep time:
Darkness hides many of the visual reference points that a child uses to find home base. It's true, they can use a flashlight to go to the bathroom and sneak up on their brother in the other tent. More worrisome are the "hide and seek" games that are especially attractive to children when in the woods.
Nighttime techniques to keep track of the kids:
? Attach fluorescent wrist or arm bands--a different color for each child.
? Have them wear sneakers with the flickering lights built into the shoe.
? Place a red or colored lantern on the table so that the child knows that it is home base.
? Attach a blinking light to the clothes or belts - a different color for each kid.
? Recognize each kid by the color of light you see.
? Put a whistle in their pocket to use if he or she feels lost or disoriented.
? Have them carry a small pocket flashlight that can be seen for a mile.
? Give older children a compass to carry and use on night trails.
? Dress them in bright light colored clothing - it reflects light better at night.
? Reinforce "mom's" rule - buddy teams of 2 or more anytime.
NOTE: All the devices mentioned are available at camping stores or websites. Consider a PLB (personal locator beacon) TerraFix 406 GPS I/O by ACR Electronics, Inc., or similar item.
5. Survival techniques aren't just for adults:
Stories about lost children while camping, hiking, or backpacking are common. If you don't teach your children survival techniques, no one else will. Well, there are a few exceptions.
Go on the trails with them and show them how to use the techniques, like build a shelter, stay on or close to the trail, keep warm, find water or food, place markers on trails, sensible direction choices, signaling, and etc.
6. After action reports:(my military background)
How do you ever know how much your child has learned, and retained in memory, unless you ask them? It will clue you in on what you thought they had learned, but hadn't. Repeating the process with them then becomes well worth it.
A good time to get into this is on the drive home from camping. Stuck with the boring ride home, your questions are a welcome distraction (that is unless they have a hand held video game unit).
7. Why didn't you think of this:
Kids sometimes learn better from other kids than from a bossy parent. Have you ever witnessed someone calling you bossy, when all you were trying to do was encourage them to learn? The stimulus to learn often stems from sibling rivalry and peer pressure. That is often overlooked.
To get around this, ask the older child or teenager that does know the actual facts and strategies, to teach the smaller ones.
Giving the older one the responsibility of doing this, signals trust by the parent and confidence in his or her abilities to do that. And when you get home, he will be more than happy to carry out the garbage. Right?
The camping experience that the child takes home with him or her is not about the wildlife they observed, nor about the natural wonders of nature. It is about how enjoyable it was to see how clumsy dad is at putting up a tent, and how mom or grandpa always burn the toast over the campfire.
Yet, underneath it all, the child mentally absorbs what everybody does and says, knowing all along that he or she felt safe, comfortable, and protected. Of course, thoughts about how they got themselves untied from the tree will also be remembered.
The author, Curt Graham, has over 40 years of camping experience. The decision to share his knowledge and experiences in that venture is exceeded only by his passion to make camping a recreational sport that is safer, more beneficial to participants, and a profound enjoyable happening that brings families and friends together like never before.
He has been writing articles, information packets, and marketing information for most of his career as a physician. Being published in Modern Physician, an elite magazine focused on physician executives, says a lot about his expertise. Feel free to copy, share, and send this article to family or friends. Kindly check out the website that he and his wife share with a passion:
Copyright 2005, Curtis Graham, MD, L & C Internet Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
A Place For Everything: Its Childs Play
What parent hasn't gone into a son's or daughter's room and wondered, "Where did I go wrong? How could I have created someone who creates such a mess?"At this point it is essential to recognize that not everyone is born organized, just as not everyone is born with a talent for art or mechanics. But anyone can learn the basic principles of organization given sufficient motivation and instruction.
People of the Century by Dan Rather
Dan Rather made a significant and tactical error and got involved in politics where he should not have gone. I personally and millions of American's lost complete respect for him and he left the news media under a cloud of darkness while disgracing his family name and negating so much of his earlier work.
God Dont Like Rich People
I will never forget the day that my daughter's sixth grade friend told me that. We had been discussing someone who had recently lost a fortune and had become very bitter as a result.
Youth In A Changing World
IntroductionChildren are the gifts of God to parents. That young child will in no time at all grow up to become a resposible future leader if he is well catered for.
Working Moms vs. Stay-at-Home Moms, Lets Stop Debating Each Other and Debate the System Instead!
I could nearly fund my children's future education if I received money every time I've heard a woman say, "I wish I could afford to stay at home full time." Sometimes you can recognize a few working women making this statement to avoid judgment from the stay-at-home parenting world (and they shouldn't feel this way).
How to Assist Troubled Teens
What parents of a teen haven't wondered where their sweet child went and who the angry and rebellious child is that took his or her place. After all, adolescence is a time of change.
The Most Innovative New Approach for ADHD, a Natural Remedy
What's new and effective in the treatment of Attention problems? A powerful intervention that is clinically tested with computerized testing, not merely parent reports, has been available to the public since 1997, but is little known. It is an over the counter product that contains specific Amino Acid combinations, Essential Fatty Acids, Phospholipid complexes, and Homeopathic Medicines.
Parenting in the Kitchen - Lessons in Cooking, Socializing, and Bonding
Kitchens are where everything happens. It's not just where meals are prepared - it's usually the hub of the home, where family and friends get together to spend time.
Maturing As a Parent
I have three children, ages 19 and 16 (yes, the 16 year-olds are twins!) My older son just mailed his college deposit and will leave for school sometime in August. Thinking back over the past few years, I've just realized my children have been spreading their wings to fly away for sometime now.
Cyber Parenting 101
Many parental units are not "techies" and openly admit they are not. They seem to use that as an excuse to not be informed and "trust" their children to do what is right in an environment that is clearly risky.
Parenting: Blending Familes - 9 Universal Laws
The law of -ing.The law of -ing refers to a misnomer in the way we talk about this special kind of family.
Parenting Your Teenager: 4 Traps to Avoid
4 traps to avoidTrap 1 - Parents need to realize the trap that is being set when your kids ask,"Well, why can't I (fill in the blank)?"Many well-intentioned parents then proceed to give a well-reasoned response and then wonder why the kids blow up and don't accept it.Here's a response I believe a parent will never get:"Thank you for that explanation Mom and Dad.
Who Wants To Date Their Mother?
Do any other reality TV junkies remember a show on TV last year called "Who Wants To Marry Our Dad?" Well, my life is starting to sound very very similar lately. All you have to do is listen to my kids for a day, and you'll see exactly what I'm talking about.
Parenting: 6 Observations on Fatherhood
Just the other day my oldest son asked:"Daddy, am I old enough to call you Dad?"Won't be long now before he is asking for the car keys..
COMMITMENT: Teaching Children the Lessons of a Lifetime
It's been said, time and again, that for a child to learn what is most important, he must be shown the lessons through example, not through words. And, if we are to nurture certain traits within our children, we must first develop those traits in ourselves.
Top Seven Tips To Become A Good Stepmother
Becoming a stepmother can undoubtedly be one of the most challenging, yet rewarding, experiences in a woman's life. Every family's circumstances are certainly different in some ways.
What Are Reasonable Expectations of a Child?
To have reasonable expectations of our children is an important aspect of wise parenting. Reasonable expectations leave room for a child to be a child but understand they are on the road to learning to be a mature adult.
Baptisms And Alternative Ways To Hold A Naming Ceremony
Traditionally, babies have been named at a christening/baptism. Most still are, but increasingly parents are choosing an alternative, non-religious ceremony.
Book Review: How to Get Your Child to Love Reading
How to Get Your Child to Love Reading was conceived when author Esmé Raji Codell was staring at a shriveled potato that was sprouting eyes. She wondered, " .
Teaching Your Children About the Value of Money
We take it for granted that children know how money gets into our wallets. The tips below will guide you through teaching your children the value of money.
|home | site map|