Why Should I Take My Kids Fishing?

Goodness, let me count the reasons!

Fishing together builds new ways of relating between parents and children!

People Only Save What They Value

If we don’t teach our children to care about nature, they won’t protect it!   There’s a lot of truth to the song,

“Don’t it always seem to go

That you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone

They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” *

Get a Future Fishing Partner 

Folks who take the time to train kids to enjoy the pleasures of fishing earn life-long fishing companions.  This isn’t a very shabby outcome, believe me!

My father had the right intentions, but he used lousy techniques.  He killed the joy of fishing by lining us up on a pier and droning on for more than an hour about the dangers of fishing.

When we made a mistake, we weren’t allowed to forget it.  My father never could understand why we were unwilling fishing partners!

It’s an Opportunity to Relate Differently

While out fishing, you may learn new things about your kids — the way they look at things, what worries them, etc.

When we took our kids fishing, they surprised us by talking about their lives away from us (school), their likes and dislikes … and a thousand other things.

There’s something about being in a natural environment that brings out soulful discussions.

Keep the Preaching to a Minimum 

There is something very satisfying about seeing a child’s face light up when they catch their first fish — even if it is a tiny perch!

A successful fishing trip is actually a juggling act! The trick is to teach youngsters the safety they need to know while engaging them in the fun of fishing.

This isn’t nearly as easy as it sounds!  Most of us are so used to talking to our kids as … well, kids … that we forget that they will eventually be adults.  This is a great time to practice talking to them as adults.  Kids hear the difference and appreciate the change!

Getting Started

After teaching kids how to bait their hook and cast, talk about the effects of weather and winds on fishing.  Show what you know … your kids can learn a few things about you, too!


*  From the song, Big Yellow Taxi, by Joni Mitchell


This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com


Published in: on June 17, 2011 at 12:02 am  Comments Off on Why Should I Take My Kids Fishing?  
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Fishing & Kids II

Recently, we covered safety issues with kids and fishing. Now,  let’s talk about the “how” of fishing with kids.

Getting a Life-Long Fishing Buddy

Remember that the goal is to get a life-long fishing buddy! Making sure the first few trips are “all about them” will ensure their continued participation.

You will need to show patience  while you are untangling lines and baiting hooks.  If it is hard for you to split your time between your fishing and theirs, this may be the time to leave your rod at home.

Limit fishing time; kids are not going to enjoy fishing for a whole weekend (at first).

It’s All About Kids and Fun

Choose a place that is easy to get to, safe and offers other diversions. A fishing spot near a park is ideal; if the fish aren’t biting – kids will enjoy a swing ride or two — and then return when the fish get hungry.

Choose a place with plenty of action. Kids would prefer to catch lots of little fish versus a couple of large ones. If possible, use live bait. Children find this much more fun than lures, spoons, etc.

What if the kids decide to toss stones or chase around? Remember that this is their outing and take it in stride. The idea is that fishing is fun! 

Fishing Can Be Fun for All Ages!

Fishing Can Be Fun for All Ages!



Hooking Your Kids

Use simple tackle: a hook, split  shot, night-crawler and bobber.

Alternately, use an old rig (in working order) from the back of the garage. You will feel better about losing this rather than watching your child accidentally drop your new graphite rod  in the water.

Another choice is to buy a “kid’s sized” tackle set. It’s the right size and fairly inexpensive.

Teaching Conservation

Teach conservation: Show the fish’s eyes, explain how they see. Let them feel the layer of “slime” (that protects them from bacteria).

Teach them only to catch what they can eat. Also, teach  ‘catch and release.’ Explain that releasing this fish today will allow the fish to reproduce many more for the future.

Being Prepared

Besides tackle and bait, be sure to bring some snacks, drinks, sunscreen, insect repellent and some basic items of  first aid.

Even with you hooking their bait and helping them cast, kids will make mistakes. Leave your temper at home! Calmly explain why it is wrong and how to do it correctly.

Lavish praise and take photos!


This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com