Most Important Survival Skills To Learn With Your Family

October 21, 2017

Having survival skills is highly important, especially if it comes down to life or death. Learning some basic survival skills can get you through, should an injury occur or something goes wrong. While there are a ton of survival skills to learn about, we have compiled a few things you can teach your children, age appropriately, so they know what to do in any situation, from getting lost to going camping:

Getting Lost

Should your child become lost, they should know that going deeper into the forest is not the best idea. This could get them more lost and they could come in contact with large forest animals. What they should do is stop what they are doing, as soon as they know they are lost and stay where they are.

From there, they should think about where they are, about how long they have been away from you, and look at what is around them. Then, they should make a plan on how to handle the situation. Should your child have a walkie-talkie, cell phone or whistle, they should make use of that now.

Many children get lost while camping, so having a plan in place means your child will know what to do and how to handle themselves.

Knife Safety

While it is important that your child knows that knives can be sharp and dangerous, learning to use one at an age-appropriate time means they can use them properly. For example, your child should never touch a knife by the blade.

Having a pocket knife to carry around might prove handy for your child when you are out in the woods. Also, having the best pocket knife sharpener could also be handy for when you find the blade dull and you are looking to gut the fish you caught for dinner. Sharpening a blade is one skill your child should know, besides how to use a knife.

Wildlife Encounters

Those who live in the country are probably used to wildlife appearing from time to time, but those who are getting away from the hustle and bustle of the city may not know how to react. Wildlife can be threatening to humans, because they can kill us.

If you happen to come across a wild bear, coyotes, or a mountain lion, what are you going to do? There are different approaches to be taken with different animals, so you need to educate your child on how to react; whether they should run or stay still, or even use some type of spray deterrent.

When you are going camping or hiking, you should research the local wildlife in that area and learn how to defend yourself against them.

How To Start A Fire

Starting a fire is a key component when camping or finding yourself lost in the forest. A fire can not only provide warmth and light, but it can help you feed yourself should you have any food around.

Depending on your climate, the temperature can range wildly, which means nights can get bitterly cold. If your child knows about the weather and their environment then they will know when it is time to build a fire. They should do so before it gets too dark and cold.

They can use sticks and twigs from around them and use any means of fire, a match or lighter to get the fire going. However, there are many ways to build a fire, thus find one that works best for you.

Cooking food over a fire requires knowledge of how well to cook their food, so they do not get sick. Before going out, teach your children how to prepare wild game or fish for consumption. Then they can cook it over the fire.

Safe Drinking Water

We know humans cannot live long without water and drinking safe water is important, as we do not want to get sick from bacteria that live within it. Your child should be aware of ways to locate water, by using a nearby water source. Then they should know how to make it safe for consumption. This can be done in various ways from using a life star or boiling it on a fire.


Having shelter or building a shelter will be important when the outside elements are unsavory. Your kids should know how to use sticks and limbs to make a type of lean-to so they can be safe from the outside, whether its rain or wind, or both.

They can also learn how to set up a tent, too. Having this knowledge means they can follow instructions and set it up so that it will stay put and not blow away or fall down in bad weather. This means your child will not be left out in the cold and they can sit safely until help arrives, should the need arise.

First Aid

Children and adults alike should know a little about first aid at the minimum. This can include many skills like cleaning a wound, using gauze and bandages, and other things inside of a first aid kit. Your child can also learn things like CPR, making a tourniquet, and other techniques that can be lifesaving.

Your children can easily learn these skills from you or by taking a class locally before you go out. Not only does knowing first aid help you while camping, but it helps you in everyday life, as well.


Now that you know some things that will help you and your children survive outdoors, you can plan a trip to camp and put that knowledge to the test! Knowing such skills will give your child confidence, responsibility, and make them good decision makers in less than ideal situations.

In the end, they will be ready to face the world and handle many problems that others would not know how to handle, which is part of raising a responsible child.

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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2 thoughts on “Most Important Survival Skills To Learn With Your Family

  1. Brandon

    Hey Andi, I read the post entirely and couldn’t help thanking you for sharing with us this piece of informative resource.


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