These days it can be tough to pull kids away from their laptops and other devices to get them to play outside and enjoy nature. But there’s a fun way you can let them use your smartphone AND discover nature while getting exercise together as a family… Geocaching! And we’re here to show you how to start geocaching with your kids. We also have a fun nature walk “Explorer Guide” printable from our sponsor Envirokidz.
What is Geocaching?
Geocaching is like an outdoor treasure hunting game where you use the GPS on your smartphone to locate and hunt down geocaches.
There is a free geocaching app that you can download on your smartphone to get started. But if you’re going to regularly geocache, you may want to pay for the upgrade as it’s more precise and offers more features. We decided to purchase the paid upgrade for the geocaching app.
You first want to go to www.geocaching.com and sign up for an account and then download the geocaching app on your smartphone.
This quick guide to geocaching for beginners is really helpful.
What is the ecokeepers program?
The Ecokeepers™ program from Envirokidz makes geocaching for kids even more engaging and educational.
Watch this quick video and our three girls will explain…
Ecokeepers™ combines a printed explorer guide with fun prompts and questions to get kids more engaged with nature and the environment around them while they hunt for the geocache.
Schools and camps can receive free Ecokeepers™ kits that include
- Free geocache and GPS trackable ladybug to hide for others to discover
- 12-page Explorer Guide with camp/teacher resources
- EnviroKidz peanut-free, gluten-free, organic and non-GMO granola and rice bars to help fuel the journey
UPDATE: As of 2018, the geocaching kits are not currently available. But you can still download a free printable version of the Explorer Guide and create your own geocache to hide.
(Note: This Explorer Guide used to be available through the Ecokeepers website, but it is no longer online on their site. So you can download the free printables here and head out for your nature walk.)
Our girls really enjoyed using the Explorer Guide while we were out geocaching. They loved looking for all the items listed and answering the questions while we walked.
Note that you do not even need to be geocaching to use the Explorer Guide. It’s great for any nature walk with kids.
We live in the Pacific Northwest where city parks provide fabulous pockets of forest. But remember that nature is all around us even in the middle of a busy city. So you can use these nature walk printables anywhere… in a nature trail, local park, school yard or even in a city center.
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Disclosure: This post is sponsored, so extra thanks for reading and sharing.
Written by Susan Carraretto, co-founder of 5 Minutes for Mom
Talk with me: @5minutesformom and Facebook.com/5minutesformom
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