While you can’t take your family on an adventure right now, you can keep the spirit of safari alive at home.
Here are some of our favourite safari-school resources for the wild child stuck inside.
These educational toolkits, quizzes, videos and colouring in printables are sure to keep your little conservationist excited about the bush and inspire your next family safari to Botswana. After all, adventure is life’s greatest teacher.
Do a World Wildlife Fund Quiz
How much do your children know about their favourite animals? These WWF quizzes on elephants and rhinos expose older kids (and adults, you might enjoy this one too!) to facts and figures that are sure to fire up their conservation curiosity.
Teaching tip: WWF has a whole Wild Classroom toolkit. From weekly exercises to species-specific kits (we highly recommend the elephant toolkit!) that even come with a certificate of completion.
Choose a New Big 5
The New Big 5 project is an international initiative to create a New Big 5 of wildlife. Traditionally, the Big Five is based on the five toughest animals in Africa for colonial hunters to shoot and kill, namely the Cape Buffalo, African Elephant, Rhinoceros, Lion and Leopard.
Today, a new international initiative (supported by more than 100 photographers, conservationists and wildlife lovers, including Dr Jane Goodall, Ami Vitale and Steve McCurry) is looking for the next Big Five.
Get the kids involved and ask them to choose their favourite animals. They will learn about Africa’s lesser-known species when voting on www.newbig5.com for the five creatures they want to see on safari. There is also a super Animal Adventure Fun Pack that aids in their new Big Five education
Teaching tip: The Pangolin is on the tentative list for this new Big 5. Watch Eye of the Pangolin for free on Youtube to learn more about this extraordinary species. The documentary takes kids to remote locations on the African continent, from arid savannah and the Kalahari desert to exotic jungles in the search for the four elusive pangolin species.
Take a Tracking Lesson
Our sister company, Kwando Safaris, is renowned for skills in tracking animals. Here’s a short lesson in understanding elephant tracks.
The guide and tracker combination on every game drive is an essential ingredient to our safaris. Two sets of roving eyes and keen ears make it much easier to translate the wild world.
Colour in the Okavango Delta
Inspired by The Adventures of Tintin, Duncan Butchart created a series of vintage-style posters of iconic African destinations. You can download his Okavango Delta and Botswana illustrations for free to print and colour in at home.
The handsome antelope taking pride of place in the centre is a Red Lechwe, commonly seen leaping in the waters of the Okavango. There’s also a lovely depiction of Victoria Falls, which is an easy day trip from Chobe Safari Lodge.
Teaching tip: Got a tiny twitcher in the family? Birdlife South Africa has a super resource kit, which includes colouring pages, about their bird of the year, the Southern Ground Hornbill. Learn about this endangered creature, a big bird found across Botswana too.
Make a Salt Pan Pizza
Like riddles? Well, what do the Makgadikgadi and pizza have in common?
They’re both flat and contain a sprinkling of salt. Survival is another essential safari skill. Keep hands and tummies full with this easy DIY pizza recipe from the Indaba Hotel.
Build a pair of DIY Binoculars
Sure to inspire your budding little game rangers. All you need is two cardboard toilet roll inners, a stretch of string and a piece of fun safari print paper. The kids can make several pairs and get as elaborate as they like: use ribbons for the strap, colour in zebra skin detail and create a scavenger hunt list around the house. There are heaps of ideas and inspiration on Pinterest.
Teaching tip: Create a scavenger hunt list at home to get kids into photography. Use a smartphone or tablet (nothing fancy) and kickstart the list with the instruction to photograph things around the house of colour. For example, get them to snap all things green, inspired by the Okavango Delta.
Also read: Check out this list of proudly Botswana beats, books, flicks and photographers. Not only will it satisfy those itchy feet but also prepare the family for adventures to come.
How to plan your family safari to Botswana
Botswana is educational, interactive and an ideal family safari destination. Firstly, we have well-equipped accommodation and activities. Secondly, our private concessions have low guest numbers, which allows greater flexibility so we can better cater to your family safari needs.
In addition, children’s programmes are available and vary for each family, based on the ages and interests of the children. From fishing adventures to exciting night drives and mokoro outings, we aim to involve the children in all aspects of the safari safely. Our expert guides and camp hospitality team will make your family safari in Botswana unforgettable!
Under One Botswana Sky comprises eight safari lodges and camps set within Botswana’s world-famous safari destinations: the Okavango Delta, the Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, Moremi Game Reserve and Chobe National Park.
Each of our Okavango Delta camps is situated in a private concession, offering an exclusive safari experience with a light-on-the-earth footprint.
Our properties offer a comprehensive Botswana experience at a reasonable rate.
Keen to see Botswana in all its glory? Contact us about staying at one of our lodges or camps for local deals.