Because children are continuously learning, they are naturally inquisitive. Curiosity, whether huge or small, could sometimes lead to catastrophe. Adults understand how to deal with risky situations, they make laws to prevent accidents but what about children?
It is tempting to think of survival skills as something only adults should have, but children should be prepared as well. Parents and grandparents could instill these eight essential survival skills in their children and grandchildren to provide them with an edge if they ever find themselves in an unforeseen, dangerous scenario.
Table of Contents
Educate your children on the value of preserving body heat for survivability. Whenever they are stranded outdoors, most people take far too long to contemplate finding shelter for the night. As a result, when darkness falls, they are exhausted, hungry, and cold; thus, they lack the energy required to construct a shelter.
Based on the weather, constructing a bed out of a dense covering of leaves may be sufficient to shield your body from making direct touch with the ground. Nonetheless, if it is chilly or raining, something much more substantial is required. Demonstrate how to get periodic refuge in caves or hollowed trees, as well as how to build modest buildings out of leaves, tree branches, and tarps. Your children will appreciate being taught these skills.
Typically, a person can go three weeks with no food but only several days without water. Thus, it is critical to teach your children how to collect and filter water in a survival emergency. Teach them how water flows downhill whenever you trek or tour the outdoors with them and point them to places with pools or streams of water. Look for animal footprints, which head to water as well.
Starting a Fire
Mastering how to build a fire might be critical to survival in the outdoors for three reasons. A fire provides means to boil water and prepare food, offers warmth, helps keep wild animals at bay, as well as aids paramedics in locating your whereabouts.
Train your children to make a fire in a nice area away from the wind, and then how to collect fuel (little chunks of wood), tinder (pine straw and dry leaves), and wood, which will blaze all night. Clarify that logs the size of their lower arm, dead and dry (but not rotting), can effectively fuel a fire. Show how to stack one end of the log on top of the other to allow air to circulate through the pile and assist in kindling the fire.
Foraging for Food
Kids that are stressed out will become hungry fast. Therefore, teaching your kid how to hunt for food is critical. Most plants are dangerous or unappealing, so it is best to start with the fundamentals given in a good foraging guide. Select one with clear photographs and details of food plants and any poisonous species that might seem like edible plants. Elderberries, for instance, are pleasant and beneficial to health, but they might be mistaken for pokeberries and water hemlock. Knowing which plants are safe to eat is crucial for wilderness survival.
Using a Compass
Your children are living in a world where Google Maps and GPS are commonplace. These and similar technologies are resurrecting long-forgotten arts such as map and compass reading. If your kid becomes lost in a mountain or the forest, these ‘old school’ abilities may be necessary for survival.
Besides giving your kids compasses, please encourage them to be aware of the terrain as they wander about outside. Recommend that they notice the vegetation, the angle of the sun, geography, landmarks, star patterns at night, winds, and weather variations. It also allows them to keep track of the time it takes to move from one point to another.
Show them how to keep on a straight path by positioning two trees or other markers ahead of them as they travel. If you start seeing the two trees individually, come to a halt and adjust your location with them. Perform this practice after reaching the second tree by matching up two additional landmarks right in front of you. You can also check your direction by looking back at the two preceding points.
Learning how to defend oneself against a physical threat could give you confidence in difficult situations. As a result, self-defense training is an important part of survival training for children. This training could take many different forms, including firearms and other weaponry training, martial arts teaching, and wild animal knowledge and strategies.
Evidently, first aid is a big subject. It is never too soon to teach your children how to cleanse and patch an injury or create a small splint. Making first aid kits with your kids could be a fun family hobby. Essential items to incorporate are cotton balls, cotton swabs, alcohol pads, hand sanitizer, scissors, gauze, safety pins, bandages, rubber gloves, and other tiny personal things. As an alternative, you can also buy the first aid kit.
Situational awareness is one of the most difficult concepts to explain and vital to master to survive an outdoor disaster. It is also an important skill to learn in daily life. You can assist your kids in building an intuition or a mentality, which will allow them to remain calm and rational in a crisis. Share with them how fear could lead to poor judgments, whereas being composed could assist them to get saved.
Outdoor family adventures can be a pleasant method to evaluate their consciousness regarding their surroundings and their abilities. You could even play out some frightening scenarios. For instance, if they are lost and overhear feral creatures roaring nearby, inform them that they would equip themselves with weaponry as a large stick ignited with fire. If darkness is approaching, urge them to focus on building or finding a shelter. Explain when remaining put is the best option for survival and when moving to a safer area is preferable.
Wilderness survival entails developing a sense of comfort and trust in nature, as well as knowing to trust one’s abilities. Your kids are just as brave and smart as the kids of previous generations who learned and exercised these survival skills. Those children simply picked up the abilities as part of their daily lives. Once you teach a survival mindset for your kid- one that proclaims, ‘I can manage this,’ they will discover that they, too, are incredibly self-sufficient.