Fishing is a great American pastime that you can share with your kids as young as two or three. Just remember to only stay as long as their attention holds because once they think fishing is boring, they may never change their mind. It also helps to have fishing rods for kids at your disposal.
When your kids are small, make your fishing trips about being out in nature as much as catching fish. Point out interesting flora and fauna as you walk through nature.
Before we get into the benefits of taking your kids fishing, I have a word or two about safety. Keep your eye on your kids while you’re near water, particularly if they can’t swim. The kids fishing jersey is very popular right now. But if you are in a canoe or boat, make sure the kids are wearing life vests over their jersey. It is also a good idea to remove the barbs off the hooks you will be using. That way, if your kids accidentally get poked with them, it will be much easier and less painful to take them out.
Fishing teaches patience (and kids needs patience, even when they are holding the best kids fishing pole on the market). When fishing, you need to sit patiently and wait to catch a fish. You can spend 15 minutes, 30 minutes or even the entire trip before you catch one. Fishing is an antidote to the instant gratification, “there’s an app for that” lifestyle kids are used to. The diligence and confidence fishing builds will help them throughout life.
Fishing is guaranteed bonding time for you and your kids. Chances are you’re on a river bank or out in a boat alone. You’re in a relaxing natural environment and it’s the perfect time to just talk. You can tackle difficult conversations or allow your child to choose the topics.
Fishing teaches conservation and nature appreciation. Whether you eat the fish you catch or use catch-and-release, you can help your children learn the importance of leaving a thriving population for the future. You can also teach them to appreciate the beauty of nature while watching chipmunks chase each other around, hear the breeze rustling through the trees.
Finally, fishing is a timeless activity that you can share with your children, and later in life, with your grandchildren.