Sunday, January 29, 2012

How to keep kids from being noisy on trail

Children naturally will be noisy compared to adults. If they’re laughing and talking loudly to one another, they’re having a great time, and that’s a good thing in the wilds. At the same time, constant shouting and blowing on safety whistles is really irritating – not just for you but for other hikers and campers. You’ll then have to remind children to quiet down.

A strategy that often works for older children is to talk about their voices in terms of the numbers zero through five. Zero would not be talking at all, one would be whispering, and five would screaming at the top of their lungs when cheering their favorite sports team. When they get a little loud, ask them to “Use voice level No. 3, please.” This tells them to tone it down and gives them a reference in their minds for how loud they are.

Read more about day hiking with children in my guidebook Hikes with Tykes.