The activity of hiking provides beneficial experiences for kids, encountering sights, sounds and aromas of nature. Rochester is a great place to take kids hiking with many great choices.
Hiking assists kids learning what’s all around them. Plus it’s a great form of exercise, releasing energy, while contributing to their fascination of the world. While hiking they can learn and have fun in the process.You may just bring your kids along on a hike. Including learning activities will maximize the activity.
A definition of teaching is “To cause to learn by example or experience.” No reason to feel inadequate to the task, just include simple activities. Here are a few ideas to assure safety while producing a worthwhile experience.
1. Two adults should escort kids on hikes for safety
2. Scout the trail ahead of time
3. Select familiar hike choosing proper distance for kids age
4. Stay on marked trails, keeping kids within view at all times
5. Take frequent breaks
6. Bring extra water and snacks
7. Adult should have first aid basics instruction by class or book
8. Bring a basic first aid kit with supplies
9. Bring red bandana, Swiss army type knife and matches
10. Each hiker should have a whistle for emergency use only
11. Apply sunscreen before the hike bringing insect repellant
12. Wear proper hiking footwear
13. Wear clothing for hike conditions in bright colors
14. Wear hats to protect from bright sun
Before the child can walk doesn’t mean they can’t participate in a hike. Babies like being carried in a sling type or other baby carrier. Even asleep they still learn to appreciate hiking.
* Bring a small blanket for feeding or changing a diaper
* Provide each kid a small zip lock bag with comfort snacks like Cheerios or fruit for break time
Children have a curiosity about nature and find hiking an adventure.
• Plan activities for kids to examine various aspects of nature
• ‘Sessions’ on safety and conservation are equally important
• Do not interfere with nature by having a ‘no keep’ rule
• Leave nothing behind except your footsteps
• Provide kids a small pack, with a small item to carry.
• Allow kids to bring only one or two small toys, since the focus is hiking not playtime
• Your kid may want to hold something so give them an item like binoculars with a strap
• It’s important for kids to keep their hands free for balance
• As children mature their body is capable of hiking longer
• They can carry a small pack with items needed for the hike to teach them responsibility
• You can expose them to using a camera or compass. Some pocket nature field guides can provide learning activities
• It’s important to talk about potential dangers and environmental responsibility
Taking kids hiking requires your complete attention but the rewards are worth it.