Organizing a fishing trip with your kids is a good way to strengthen that parent-children bond. Do you recall going fishing with your dad or the entire family when you were little? If you do, then I’m quite sure you are glad that someone taught you how to fish.
But, how do you make fishing fun for kids you ask yourself? Quite simple, all you need to do is to ensure that you adopt a playful approach and equip yourself with the right kids fishing equipment such as kids fishing pole, kids reel, etc.
Because kids get bored quite easily and fishing is something that involves lots of patience, you need to provide these children with some thrilling side activities to keep them amused and interested in fishing. There is no age-restriction to fishing, even that four-year-old kid of yours can go fishing as long as you match the trip to their age.
At the age of six, kids are fully prepared to fully immerse themselves in the world of fishing. At this age (6), kids should be able to cast by themselves and collect the fish from the hook for the first time. To make your kids stick with fishing for a long time, you need to show them the fun part of fishing to get them hooked on.
How to Make Fishing Fun for Kids?
Concentrate on the kid, and not the fishing
The most important thing to do when taking your kid out for fishing is to make him or her your primary focus. That day should solely be for your kid, all thoughts regarding catching the biggest largemouth bass should be postponed.
If this is the first time you would be taking your kid out on a fishing trip, all your thought should be on how to make the fishing trip fun for your kid. By so doing, you are ensuring that your kid enjoys fishing and becomes a long-lasting fishing partner in the future.
Let the kid select the fishing area
To make the fishing adventure more fun, give your kid the privilege to decide on the area to fish. By so doing, you are increasing the kid’s involvement, and this would ultimately ensure that he gets hooked on easily. You could simply provide your kid with some necessary guides that would enable them to select a good spot. The bottom line is to engage them in all that you’ll be doing during your fishing trip.
The kid should select the lure
As soon as you get to the fishing spot, the next thing to do is to set up your gear. To some people, selecting the first lure at a new spot is always fun. It could be the same for your kid.
What if you select the right lure, and you get a huge largemouth bass on your first cast? Thrilling, right? Yeah, I know it rarely happens, but once it does- Game on!
So, just think of how glad your kid will be if you allow him or her to select the first lure. Just be cautious and ensure that they don’t harm themselves with the hooks.
Teach them about different species of fishes ( before and while fishing)
One way to bring out the fun in fishing is by educating your kids about the diverse kinds of fishes. This should be done fascinatingly and not the boring school-style. Tell them interesting facts about these species, make them crave for more information. For instance, you could tell them about an aggressive specie like the largemouth bass. Give them a background story about the largemouth bass, what they eat, and how big they can grow. Thrill them with fun-facts regarding diverse species of fishes. In all, make it fun.
To take things further, you can as well buy them an educational reference chart about freshwater fish species.
Get your kid a fishing rod
At the ages of 4-5 and above, your kid must have developed a brain that is keen to learn more things. At such ages, kids can develop memories that tend to last for a long time. If you discover that your child is always eager to go fishing with you, you might want to get them their first fishing rod. Trust me, it will serve as a great accomplishment and would further propel their interest in fishing.
Depending on your child’s age, there exist some amazing options out there:
For kids between ages 4-8:
I would recommend a small and lightweight fishing rod matched with a spincast reel because they are easy to learn and use.
For kids between ages 9-14:
As soon as they start developing stronger hands, you would want to get something that can capture big fishes. You can get them a fishing pole by Lanaak (for kids).
For kids of 14 years and above:
If you have a kid who is over 14 years old, get a normal size fishing rod and reel set. If they prefer to go pike fishing, you can go with a 7 ft. rod and a 6.3:1 gear ratio reel.
Get your kid their tackle box and lures
This is similar to the last tip, as it also talks about purchasing a fishing gear for your kid. When you choose to get your kids the necessary tackles they will need for fishing; you have already provided them with a tackle box.
How is it fun for a child to have a personal tackle box?
Well, imagine yourself in a fishing store trying to purchase new lures. In such a scene, it is like you are in a store full of candy, and you want to have everything for yourself. As soon as you get your new lures in the water, you are very eager to try them out, right?
The same goes for your kid. It is surely not a good idea to purchase an expensive lure for your kid because they are very likely to lose them while fishing. Rather, cram their tackle box with cheap and easily replaceable plastics, and they will be thrilled to go fishing the next time.
Make it fun – like a game
Because children run out of patience more easily than you do, thrill them with basic games while fishing. This ensures that they don’t get bored and maintain focus. For instance, you can decide to play I spy…or who captures the biggest or smallest fish (because this gives both of you the chance to win). It is also cool if your kid suggests a game; it keeps their mind occupied.
Take a recess and have a picnic
To add more fun to your fishing trip, take breaks, and relax your body. You can also decide to have a picnic by the water and eat to regain lost energy.
If your picnic is being held close to the water, you might want to consider throwing a ledger rig. Throwing a ledger rig will raise your chances of capturing a decent size pike while eating.
Take pictures with fish
When you go on a fishing adventure, and you capture a decent size pike or largemouth bass, what do you do next? Take a picture as proof and send it to your friends, right? Certainly! In the case of fishing with your child, every catch is a major accomplishment. So, why don’t you take a picture of your kid and the fish whenever they catch something? This would make them happy because it offers them something to boast about when they are amongst their peers.
Teach them how to handle the fish ( including how to release)
Teaching your kids how to handle a fish is very important. Harming the fish can result in severe injuries or death. Show your kids how to properly unhook a fish, so they don’t hurt them badly. If you think your child is too small to handle the hooks or the fishes, you can unhook the fish yourself.
Perform a fish dance whenever your kid catches a fish
Dancing can be fun, especially when you have something to dance for. When your kid captures a fish, you can perform a fish dance to add more fun to the adventure. So it isn’t a one-way affair, you can as well do a fish dance when you capture a fish. It doesn’t have to be a long dance, just some little movements to celebrate your achievement. If this sounds stupid to you, just imagine how footballers celebrate when they score a goal. It is the same thing. And your children will love it!
Ask them to help you with a landing net
When you are putting everything in place for your fishing trip, ensure you don’t leave the landing jet behind. As soon as you get a fish hooked and you are trying to land it, let your kid assist you. Ask them to assist you in capturing the fish by helping you with the landing net. By so doing, you are promoting teamwork rather than competition.