The kinds of activities you participate in as a family in your local area are also the kinds of activities you’ll likely participate in while you are traveling. Aside from just having a lot of fun and bonding together as a family, local adventures are a great way to prep your children for travel. The children learn appropriate behaviors for hiking, museums, tours, or whatever your family likes to do. Parents learn valuable skills like knowing when the children are close to a melt down so they can preemptively strike and diffuse what could be a very stressful situation.
Really, we just like to explore and have fun as a family. Last weekend our local garden was hosting a family photography class. I like photography. My husband likes photography. Our children, even our 2 year old, are always taking whatever camera they see and taking photos with it. I thought this would be a great opportunity for us to expand our skills, so I signed us all up.
A professional photographer gave a brief lecture about the five elements of composition. We then had some time to head out into the garden and practice with our newly acquired information. Each person had some time to sit with the photographer and discuss a few of their favorite pictures. Then, as a class, we each shared one or two pictures and again talked about the elements of composition.
This is how each member of our family reacted to our experience.
My husband, being the very busy man that he is, relished the chance to work on his photography skills, even if he was sharing our DSLR camera with me.
I would have liked to take a few more pictures than I had the opportunity to, but really enjoyed watching my husband and children have a good time. The fact that it was a beautiful, sunny day surrounded by beautiful plants and my beautiful family, I probably would have had a good time even if I hadn’t taken any pictures.
Our six year old relished holding her own point and shoot camera and taking as many pictures as she wanted. She was thoughtful about her compositions, remembering the lecture we had regarding what makes a good photograph.
Our four year old loved taking pictures of her baby brother. She could have cared less about taking pictures of the landscape. At least we will know who to go to for good portrait photography some day.
Our two year old had my old iPod to take pictures with. She felt like such a big girl running around the gardens with her big sisters.
Our little baby just enjoyed being pushed in his stroller in the beautiful weather.
The class was a little long for the four and two year old, but we managed to hold off any meltdowns by discussing our next move of getting lunch, and asking for their input. The class was the perfect length for our six year old. She ended up with some really beautiful photographs. Let me share a few with you.
Our next big trip, we will provide a point and shoot camera for our children to share. Maybe they can make their own photo book with the pictures they take. Who knows? We’ll see where they want to take this new skill. The most important thing is we had a mini family adventure close to home, and had a really great time.