It’s time to embark on a camping journey! A camping preschool theme is an exciting and interesting way to teach preschoolers about nature, downtime, and of course camping favorites, like s’mores and songs. Download these free camping lesson plans for preschoolers and make planning for your camping theme quick and easy!
Camping Activities for Preschoolers
Camping as a kid is a true rite of passage! While we may not be able to recreate the real world of camping with our preschoolers, we can certainly engage in camping traditions and try our best to explore nature!
Why not make the great outdoors your preschool theme? With free preschool camping activities and even free camping printables, this nature preschool theme is full of wild fun!
Part of being outside and camping in the natural world, you’ll come across plenty of insects. Incorporating an insect theme with your camping activities is a great way to build natural science connections through literacy and math.
Check out these 12 insect literacy and math centers and amp up your camping theme!
Insect Preschool Centers$10.00
A camping theme in preschool can be as simple as using blankets, pillows, chairs, or tables. Bring in some extra flashlights, turn out the lights, and practice reading by a fire made of paper towel rolls and construction paper.
Re-imagine your dramatic play center into a camping site! With forest animal crafts, pretend s’mores, fishing, pretend campfire and more, this dramatic play camping set is loads of fun!
Preschoolers love being outside so this is the perfect theme to engage all their senses. Whether you are looking for fun summer camp lesson plans, or camping lesson plans for toddlers, we’ve got you covered! Grab these free preschool lesson plans for camping and build those fun memories!
Camping Books for Preschoolers
Books can help us learn about the joys of camping! Perfect for children who may not be familiar with camping or for kids who are camping pros. Take a look at these high-quality camping books.
FAQ About Teaching a Camping Preschool Theme
Teaching preschoolers about camping is fun and easy. Use simple items like flashlights and lights off to read in the dark. Or do marshmallow experiments or use them to make patterns (see the math section below). Incorporate nature walks in the great outdoors and look for new and exciting living and non-living things outside.
Flashlights, s’more kits, fishing poles, and a sleeping bag! These items are perfect for a classroom or home camping theme, even if a real camping adventure is not in the cards. Camping pretend play is such fun!
A camping preschool theme can teach us great skills… everything from teamwork (building a pretend fire together) to respect for nature and the beauty of our world. Children can learn new songs, engage in collaborative and dramatic play, and we can use the camping theme to infuse academics, like math and literacy.
Important Info about these Camping Lesson Plans
These lesson plans for preschoolers are just one theme in a set of over 40 that will become a part of my free Learn At Home Preschool Lesson Plans.
The Learn at Home Preschool Activity Plans are a set of free activity plans you can use to teach your preschooler at home.
Each set of lesson plans is centered around a weekly theme and includes a minimum of 16 activities that can be done throughout the week. They are designed to be done at home with parents, but many preschool teachers are using these lesson plans, too!
Just glance over the lessons each day, gather the very few materials needed, and you’re ready to go!
All the preschool learning activities are quick and easy to set up, requiring very little (if any at all) prep and only require the most basic of household materials. This makes them especially easy for parents to implement…and this makes preschool teachers happy, too!
These activities also work wonderfully in the classroom, and if you’re a preschool teacher who is remotely teaching you can send these lesson plans to your student’s parents.
Camping Lesson Plans for Preschool
Whether you are looking for camping circle time activities, a daycare camping theme, or engaging play ideas for your camping theme, we’ve got you covered with over 16 preschool camping activities.
These free preschool lesson plans feature hands-on learning activities in all the most important content areas in preschool. They include literacy activities, math and science activities, sensory and art, safe online activities, as well as other playful learning activities. Read all about them below.
Literacy Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Alphabet Fishing – Using magnetic letters or alphabet fish (attach a paperclip to each fish to make it magnetic), invite your preschooler to fish! Using a wooden dowel with a magnet tied to string will create the perfect fishing pole.
Encourage your preschooler to share the letter names and sounds. Or make it a challenge by having the child fish for a certain sound. Say, “I spy the letter that makes the /s/ sound, can you hook it?” This makes a great literacy center too! This camping literacy activity for preschoolers is a great hands-on way to practice letter sounds.
Camping Syllables – Help your little learner practice identifying how many syllables are in a word. Clap, use a robot voice, or put your hand under your chin to see how many times your chin drops within each word. Use these fun camping syllable sorts to make learning syllables a blast.
Simply print and sort! For extra practice, encourage your child to come up with their own list of words and help sort those words by syllables too!
Math and Science Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Marshmallow Patterns – This mini marshmallow and paint pattern activity is so engaging! Simply dip the marshmallows in colored paint to create patterns! There is something so exciting and fresh about painting with items other than paintbrushes, right?
Note: Make sure students don’t attempt to eat the marshmallows with paint. If you need a taste-safe version, you can dye whipped cream, yogurt, or even frosting to use as your paints. This is some camping math that your little ones can get behind!
Fish Number Sequence Puzzles – Simply print and cut! Lay out all the puzzle pieces randomly and invite the child to put the pieces into number order. Once finished, explain that this puzzle also shows a growing pattern because each puzzle piece number is one more than the last.
Camping Tent STEAM Challenge – Using toothpicks, marshmallows, and coffee filters, invite your preschooler to create a tent for a Lego person or small figure. Encourage them to experiment with what is working and what is not. Expand on this activity and encourage them to make a tent or a fort large enough for a grownup! Camping science activities for preschoolers don’t need to be complicated, use the natural materials around you to engineer and create!
Playful Learning Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Camping in Nature – Head out on a real camp adventure! Whether just in the backyard, a park, or a full-blown camping experience, give it a try. Invite your preschooler to back a camping backpack and discuss what things you might need to explore and stay overnight in nature. Don’t forget to pay attention to that beautiful night sky!
Build a “Camp Site” – Grab your flashlights and blankets, it’s time to build your campsite! Once inside enjoy books, color camping pictures, tell stories, or even take it outside for a real adventure!
Make a Video – Grab the phone or camera and start recording! Have the kids record nature outside and be dramatic. Use different voices or pretend to be a character from a book or movie. Have fun!
Social-Emotional Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Being Different is Special – Go to YouTube and listen to the story, Pete the Cat Goes Camping by James Dean. After listening, encourage your preschooler to tell you some of the events in the story. What did Pete do on his camping trip? In this story, Pete talks about people being different like Bigfoot. In what ways might people look or be different? Why is being different a good thing?
Being Responsible is Important – Go to YouTube and listen to the story, Curious George Goes Camping by Margaret Reyes. After listening, discuss with your preschooler about Curious George’s choices.
He went to go get water and filled his bucket but then decided to put out another camper’s campfire, got lost after chasing a deer and was sprayed by a skunk. Now George is lost and lonely.
What choices could he have made to ensure that he wouldn’t get lost? How do you think the man with the yellow hat felt when George disappeared? It’s very important to be responsible and safe, whether you are camping or not.
Fun Camping Themed Materials for a Preschool Camping Theme
Camping is full of new experiences and with some engaging camping materials, your preschoolers will love an adventure! Here are some of my favorite camping items for dramatic play and investigating nature.
Just Plain Fun Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Camping Bingo Game – Everyone loves playing Bingo! This is a game that is fun for everyone and is just print and play.
Make S’mores – Whether you use the real ingredients or make a pretend s’more with playdough, this will be s’more fun than you’ve ever had!
Build a Pretend Campfire – Using wooden blocks and red, yellow, and orange tissue paper, invite the children to get creative! Roast marshmallows (pretend), tell campfire stories or sing songs, or put on a puppet show or use shadow puppets.
Firefly Art – Grab some brown and yellow band-aids and create adorable fireflies! These lightning bugs are so simple to make and are a great opportunity to learn some firefly facts!
Safe Online Activities for a Camping Theme for Preschoolers
Online Story – Go to YouTube and listen to the story, Llama Llama Loves Camping by Anna Dewdney. After listening, encourage your preschooler to tell you events from the story. What did Llama and his friends do on their camping trip? Was it hard for them not to use gadgets on their trip? Would it be hard for you?
A Camping We Will Go – Sing along to this snazzy song and learn about all the ways to work together to contribute to a fun camp trip!
Tobee Goes Camping – Join Tobee and Caitie on a camping adventure. Take a kayak, build a fire, sing campfire songs, and perform hand puppets in the dark!
Download Your Free Camping Lesson Plans Here
Think your preschooler will enjoy learning about camping? Download these free preschool lesson plans by clicking the image below.
I am an educator, book enthusiast, and a stay at home momma to two precious and long-awaited littles. My degree is in Early Childhood Education and Curriculum and Instruction and I have spent the last 15 years working with young children. I feel very fortunate to have this time to watch my babies grow and I can’t wait to share my passion for learning and reading with you!