Telling a variety of campfire stories for kids is just one way to pass the time in the great outdoors. Taking children on a camping trip is a wonderful way for families to connect without electrical distractions like televisions and computers. Telling stories around a campfire is a longtime tradition that is likely to be remembered long after a particular video game is forgotten. Find campfire stories suitable for children before your trip, so that you'll have plenty of entertainment when everyone is gathered around the fire.
Types of Stories
By far, scary stories are some of the most popular. There's just something about being in the dark, surrounded by unknown creatures, that brings out spooky storytelling. Keep in mind the ages of the kids, however - you don't want to give a very young child nightmares with a tale that's more appropriate for older children.
You don't have to go the scary route if you know that your listeners will find it too much. Other types of popular campfire stories for kids involve adventure and humor.
Where to Find Campfire Stories for Kids
Maybe you have favorite campfire tales from your own childhood. Many children love hearing old stories that have been passed down through generations. If you're looking for a bigger selection of tales to tell, you have plenty of options. There are resources for online scary campfire stories and humorous tales that you can gather, as well as books to check out, including the following:
- Ultimate Camp Resource contains dozens of stories that are broken down into several categories such as funny, scary, legends and moralistic, so you have your pick of which type of story to tell.
- Campfire Stories is a book full of tales that are perfect for the teen set, who may need a bigger jolt of fright than their younger peers.
- MacScouter offers plenty of stories not just for Scouts, but for anyone who wants a variety of tales to tell around a campfire. Categories include Native American, ghost, moralistic, Western and Scouting.
- The Boy Scouts Book of Campfire Stories would be perfect for a Scouting trip, but also for young adult campers spending time with their family and friends.
- Ghosts and Stories provides plenty of ghostly tales, including links to eBooks that you may enjoy.
How to Tell a Story
To truly make story time memorable, storytellers should do their best to really get into the tale. If a story is new to you, read it before the trip and learn the major details. It's perfectly fine to embellish as you tell the story-that's part of what makes the experience unique for everyone.
- If the story is scary, dramatic pauses and sudden "Boos!" are appropriate. You want listeners sitting on the edge of their seats. Of course, scary stories should only be told at night as the campfire is dying down, for maximum impact.
- Adventurous tales should be punctuated with plenty of thrilling phrases and expansive motions.
- Funny stories rely on great timing, so practice beforehand if needed.
Above all, use your family or scout camping time to have fun with young listeners. Get everyone involved, whether they act out scenes or tell their own stories. Listening to tales while gathered around a campfire and eating roasted marshmallows or hot dogs is an experience that will stay with children long after they've grown up.