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  • Writer's pictureJennifer Larson

Summer Fun: Gone Fishing! A Guide for Families

Updated: Jul 30, 2022

We’re continuing our Summer Fun theme for the month of June and looking at different ways we can take learning outside the classroom. Fishing has become a hot discussion topic at our house recently (and I’m not exactly sure why) so this week we’re diving into the many benefits of fishing with your kids.

I’ll admit fishing is not a favorite activity of mine, perhaps because I can hardly remember the last time I had a successful catch! But obviously our kids don’t share the same sentiments because they are very eager to dig out our fishing poles and hit the lake.

As we’ve highlighted the last few weeks, there are many benefits to being outdoors and participating in activities with your kids (and even better when our devices are away). Fishing requires planning, observation, patience (lots of patience!), and if you’re lucky enough to bring home a fish then you get to clean, prep and cook too!

So, whether you prefer to head out on the ocean, lake, river or perhaps introduce a toddler to fishing in the bathtub (plastic fish of course, right?), we hope you’ll consider a fishing trip this summer.

Benefits of Fishing

Fishing can be an all day excursion, and if you think about that experience, it’s easy to recognize the numerous learning opportunities and reflection time it provides. We wanted to highlight three skills our kids can further develop while they’re scouting the waters based on our earlier review of what kids need to be successful in the future.


Confident kids have a growth mindset and a belief that they will get better at something over time. Fishing is the perfect way to test this out. I’ve watched my kids fish along the lakeshore. They’ll try different spots or different types of bait. Maybe they’ll get a bite but lose the fish as they try to reel it in too fast. But they rarely give up. They try and try again.

Critical Thinking

Scheduling time to slow down and reflect is a wonderful way to foster critical thinking in your kids. And what better way to do so than a day spent fishing because it requires patience, monitoring, adjustment, more patience (a lot of it!) and quiet time - at least until you’ve actually netted a fish.

Creative Innovation

Allowing your kids some unstructured playtime can breed creativity and the openness to try something new, see things in a new way. So, give your kids a pole and let them have a go. Who knows, your fishing pole may just end up as a much needed tent support.

Resources - Pre-K/Elementary

Top 10 Best Fishing Games For Kids

A good fishing game for kids gives real feels where you can get rid of hand stiffness and actually don’t miss real fishing. - beingtheparent

Reel Them in: 19 Fishing Books for Kids

“Hook” your readers with these favorite fishing tales. - WeAreTeachers

7 Tips for Fishing with Kids

Fishing is a fantastic activity that gets your kids outside and interacting with the environment. With a little preparation and patience, you will have your kids catching their first fish in no time. - Take Me Fishing

Resources - Middle/High

The Difference Between Fly Fishing and Spin Fishing

A detailed explanation of the differences. - The Catch & The Hatch

Freshwater Fishing Equipment For Beginners

A simple list of basic, freshwater fishing gear for beginners that will help you get started with fishing. - Take Me Fishing

How to Descale and Clean Fish (How to Gut Fish)

In this video on how to descale and clean fish, I will show you how to gut fish step by step including how to descale a fish - I will show you how to clean and gut a Bass before cooking. - YouTube

Join the Discussion

Fishing may not be for everyone but with a few tweaks it can be a wonderful learning experience for all ages and perhaps one you’ll look back on fondly over the years. I have many memories of my husband untangling a mess of fishing line as each kid would take turns handing him their fishing rod. Hoping this summer there are more fish (perhaps even one for me!) and less tangles but I’m looking forward to the adventure regardless.

Have a favorite fishing story you’d like to share? We’d love to hear from you!

About the Author

Jennifer Larson is an entrepreneur, charter school founder and mother to four children. Connect with her @startupjen.

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