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Go Out & Play!
Geocaching and Other Great
Outdoor Ideas for Gifted Kids
Carolyn Kottmeyer
Go Outside! Benefits…
• Resurrecting Free Play in Young Children: Looking Beyond
Fitness and Fatness to Attention, Affilia...
Go Outside! Critical for development…
• Nature and Childhood Development
• Play in nature, particularly during the critica...
Go Outside! Better Test Scores…
• Effects of Outdoor Education Programs for Children in California
• Focused on at-risk yo...
Go Outside! Reduce ADHD…
• Could exposure to everyday green spaces help treat ADHD?
Evidence from children's play settings...
Go Outside! Buffer from Stress…
• Nearby Nature: A Buffer of Life Stress Among Rural Children
• Even a view of nature—gree...
Go Outside! Save the Earth!
• Learning to Love the Natural World Enough to Protect It
• Positive, direct experience in the...
How children lost the right to roam in
four generations
• When George Thomas was eight he walked everywhere. It
was 1926 a...
How children lost the right to roam in
four generations
• The report's author, Dr William Bird, the health adviser to
Natu...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
The problem: We need…
• An outdoor activity
• As mentally stimulating as a computer game
• Can be done anywhere, in any ou...
The Solution…
Geocaching!
Get Out and Play!
Geocaching is…
• “A worldwide game of hiding and seeking treasure“
• Something for all ages and physical abilities
• As ea...
Geocaching is…
• Individual, family or group activity. Even bring the geo-dog!
• Outdoors in City, Suburbs, or Rural areas...
Inside “cave” with geocache,
Wissahickon Park, Philadelphia
(under the Indian Statue!)
Geocache view in South Hadley,
Mass...
Visit Geocaching.com
• Sign up for free account (Premium account available)
• Watch “getting started” videos
• Locate cach...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Latitude and Longitude
• Where are you?
• London, England
• Johannesburg, South Africa
• Somerset, New Jersey
• Lat / Long...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Geocaching in New Jersey
• Reptiles, Amphibians and Bugs....Oh
My!!!!!!!
• N 39° 34.948 W 074° 30.706
• New Jersey Nick Na...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Cache types…
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Traditional Cache Earth Cache
Multi Cache Letterbox Hybrid Cache
Mystery (Puzzle...
What does a cache look like?
• Micro (and Nano)
• Small prescription bottle, film canister, magnetic key holder (MKH), Nan...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Raiders of the Lost
Cache! Mt. Gretna
Pennsylvania
December 22,
2012… We’re Still
Here!
The G...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
In the heels of Alamogul,
Lancaster, PA
13 Days of Halloween!
Downingtown, PA
Caching with ge...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
What time is it?
Guarding the sunset…
Enough said?
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
It’s electric!
Light Post Cache (LPC)
Watch out for snapping
turtles…
Geocaching Tools
• Computer at home: Geocaching.com
• GPS or Smartphone to use outdoors
• Geocaching.com (iPhone, Android,...
Optional Geocaching Tools
• Log removal tool (tweezers)
• Wet wipes / sunscreen / hat / bug repellent / orange vest
• Trav...
View near cache,
St. Louis Missouri
Ammo can cache in
Yellow Springs,
Pennsylvania View from cache in
the old cell phone
p...
Trackables: Geocoins and Travel Bugs
• Coin or tag with unique number
• Trackable on Geocaching.com
• Move others’ trackab...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Spiky and his new
friends, the Girlies, in
England!
Spiky caching in
Arizona…
Spiky at Chinco...
Hoagies’ Gifted: Geocaching 101
• Geocaching 101: How to find your first cache
• Sign up at Geocaching.com
• Select your f...
Where could it be?
• Attached to something metal: guardrail, lamp post
• (Most) Lamp post skirts lift up!
• Under a pile o...
What’s inside a cache?
• The LOG!
• Pen/pencil (if you’re lucky, it writes)
• SWAG (take some, leave some if possible)
• T...
Geocaching…
fun anywhere!
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Puzzle Caches?
• Sudoku, Word Search, Simple substitution cipher
• Clues in pictures, morphing photos, YouTube videos
• Cu...
Premium Membership
• Queries
• Routes
• Favorite Points
• Statistics
• Premium-only Geocaches
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
The Gifted Mathies favorite… Statistics!
• Finds by found date
• 366 day caching challenge
• Finds by cache type
• Terrain...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Other Outdoor Activities
• Letterboxing Letterboxing.org
• Follow clues from a starting point (no GPS or Smartphone)
• Exc...
Other Outdoor Activities
• Benchmarking
• Visit National Geodetic Survey (NGS) locations
• Geocaching.com/mark
• Waymarkin...
Resources
• The Complete Idiot's Guide to
Geocaching
• The Box That Watch Found
(Boxcar Children)
• Get Out!: 150 Easy Way...
Go Out & Play
Geocaching and Other Great
Outdoor Ideas for Gifted Kids
Questions?
Bring to presentation…
• GPS, smartphone
• Pen, flashlight
• Containers: Ammo can, Lock-n-lock, film canister, MKH,
bison ...
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
Atlantic City
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
@2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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Go Out & Play! Geocaching and Other Great Outdoor Ideas for Kids

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Research shows that free time in nature offers huge benefits to kids. Better focus and fewer symptoms of ADHD, higher test scores, better social/emotional skills and self-esteem, better vision, and of course, better physical fitness... Why aren't we sending our kids outside to play?

For many of us, kids and adults alike, we need a "reason," a motivation to get off the computer and out the door. Geocaching provides that reason, while offering all the social and educational benefits of free time outside!

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Go Out & Play! Geocaching and Other Great Outdoor Ideas for Kids

  1. 1. Go Out & Play! Geocaching and Other Great Outdoor Ideas for Gifted Kids Carolyn Kottmeyer
  2. 2. Go Outside! Benefits… • Resurrecting Free Play in Young Children: Looking Beyond Fitness and Fatness to Attention, Affiliation and Affect • Health benefits from outdoor play are only one aspect… • Cognitive benefits from play in nature, including creativity, problem- solving, focus and self-discipline. • Social benefits include cooperation, flexibility, and self-awareness. • Emotional benefits include stress reduction, reduced aggression and increased happiness @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  3. 3. Go Outside! Critical for development… • Nature and Childhood Development • Play in nature, particularly during the critical period of middle childhood, appears to be an especially important time for developing the capacities for creativity, problem-solving, and emotional and intellectual development • Direct experiences with nature [are becoming] less and less available to children • Exposure to varying focal lengths important to eye development @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  4. 4. Go Outside! Better Test Scores… • Effects of Outdoor Education Programs for Children in California • Focused on at-risk youth, 56% of whom reported never having spent time in a natural setting, compared impact on students who experienced the outdoor education program versus those who had not. Major findings: • 27% increase in measured mastery of science concepts; • enhanced cooperation and conflict resolution skills; • gains in self-esteem; • gains in positive environmental behavior; and • gains in problem-solving, motivation to learn, and classroom behavior @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  5. 5. Go Outside! Reduce ADHD… • Could exposure to everyday green spaces help treat ADHD? Evidence from children's play settings • Children who regularly play in green settings (Big Trees & Grass and Open Grass) have milder ADHD symptoms than children who play in built outdoor and indoor settings • Children with attention deficits concentrate better after walk in the park • Children concentrated better after walking in a park, and the effect of walking in a park on concentration helped close the gap between children with ADHD and those without; that the effect was similar to that of two common types of ADHD medication @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  6. 6. Go Outside! Buffer from Stress… • Nearby Nature: A Buffer of Life Stress Among Rural Children • Even a view of nature—green plants and vistas—helps reduce stress among highly stressed children • The more plants, green views and access to natural play areas, the more positive the results! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  7. 7. Go Outside! Save the Earth! • Learning to Love the Natural World Enough to Protect It • Positive, direct experience in the out-of-doors and being taken outdoors by someone close to the child—a parent, grandparent, or other trusted guardian—are the two most significant contributing factors [to individuals choosing to take action to benefit the environment when they are adults] • www.childrenandnature.org/research/volumes/C16/16/ @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  8. 8. How children lost the right to roam in four generations • When George Thomas was eight he walked everywhere. It was 1926 and his parents were unable to afford the fare for a tram, let alone the cost of a bike and he regularly walked six miles to his favourite fishing haunt without adult supervision. • Fast forward to 2007 and Mr. Thomas's eight-year-old great-grandson Edward enjoys none of that freedom. He is driven the few minutes to school, is taken by car to a safe place to ride his bike and can roam no more than 300 yards from home. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  9. 9. How children lost the right to roam in four generations • The report's author, Dr William Bird, the health adviser to Natural England and the organiser of a conference on nature and health, believes children's long-term mental health is at risk. He has compiled evidence that people are healthier and better adjusted if they get out into the countryside, parks or gardens. • "Studies have shown that people deprived of contact with nature were at greater risk of depression and anxiety. Children are getting less and less unsupervised time in the natural environment." • Dailymail.co.uk/news/article-462091/How-children-lost-right- roam-generations.html @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  11. 11. The problem: We need… • An outdoor activity • As mentally stimulating as a computer game • Can be done anywhere, in any outdoor environment • Kids can participate alone or with parents or companions (and is interesting to all!) • Can be done regularly • Widens kids’ outdoor range • Encourages time in and observation of nature @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  12. 12. The Solution… Geocaching! Get Out and Play!
  13. 13. Geocaching is… • “A worldwide game of hiding and seeking treasure“ • Something for all ages and physical abilities • As easy or hard as you make it • Wherever you are! • Over 2.5 million geocaches and over 6 million geocachers worldwide as of November 2014! • Geocaching starts where our families are—at home on the computer or tablet—and moves outdoors! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  14. 14. Geocaching is… • Individual, family or group activity. Even bring the geo-dog! • Outdoors in City, Suburbs, or Rural areas • Parks, historical locations, geologic features, hidden secrets • Map-reading skills, GPS tracking • Search and observation skills • Solve puzzle caches (at home or “site” puzzles) • Meet others of all ages at Geocaching Events @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  15. 15. Inside “cave” with geocache, Wissahickon Park, Philadelphia (under the Indian Statue!) Geocache view in South Hadley, Massachusetts, near Mount Holyoke College campus @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  16. 16. Visit Geocaching.com • Sign up for free account (Premium account available) • Watch “getting started” videos • Locate caches on geocaching.com, then find outside! • Log your finds • Track geocoins and travel bugs • Log your trackables • Place your own caches! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  18. 18. Latitude and Longitude • Where are you? • London, England • Johannesburg, South Africa • Somerset, New Jersey • Lat / Long • S 26° 11.100 E 28° 02.200 • N 40° 32.255 W 074° 31.293 • N 51° 32.255 W 0° 5.293 @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  20. 20. Geocaching in New Jersey • Reptiles, Amphibians and Bugs....Oh My!!!!!!! • N 39° 34.948 W 074° 30.706 • New Jersey Nick Name • N 40° 32.255 W 074° 31.293 • The END of the Road • N 39° 48.276 W 075° 21.048 @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  28. 28. Cache types… @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer Traditional Cache Earth Cache Multi Cache Letterbox Hybrid Cache Mystery (Puzzle) Cache WhereIGo Cache Event/ Mega Event Cache Webcam Cache CITO Event Cache (Cache In, Trash Out) Virtual Cache
  29. 29. What does a cache look like? • Micro (and Nano) • Small prescription bottle, film canister, magnetic key holder (MKH), Nano • Small • Sandwich-size Lock-n-Lock, plastic mayo, pickle or peanut butter jar • Regular • Ammo can, large Lock-n-Lock, wholesale-club-size plastic jar • Large • Construction job box, full-size barrel • Unknown @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  30. 30. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer Raiders of the Lost Cache! Mt. Gretna Pennsylvania December 22, 2012… We’re Still Here! The Giant's Kettles of Bulls Bridge, Earthcache, Kent Connecticut
  31. 31. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer In the heels of Alamogul, Lancaster, PA 13 Days of Halloween! Downingtown, PA Caching with geodog! Downingtown, PA
  32. 32. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer What time is it? Guarding the sunset… Enough said?
  33. 33. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer It’s electric! Light Post Cache (LPC) Watch out for snapping turtles…
  34. 34. Geocaching Tools • Computer at home: Geocaching.com • GPS or Smartphone to use outdoors • Geocaching.com (iPhone, Android, Windows) • C:Geo (Android) • Or use Google maps • Pen to sign the log @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  35. 35. Optional Geocaching Tools • Log removal tool (tweezers) • Wet wipes / sunscreen / hat / bug repellent / orange vest • Travel Bugs or Geocoins (Trackables) • SWAG / Trade items • Trash Bags for CITO • Replacement log sheets • Ready to place cache containers • Camera! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  36. 36. View near cache, St. Louis Missouri Ammo can cache in Yellow Springs, Pennsylvania View from cache in the old cell phone parking lot, PHL @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  37. 37. Trackables: Geocoins and Travel Bugs • Coin or tag with unique number • Trackable on Geocaching.com • Move others’ trackables or start your own! • Track progress on map… @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  40. 40. @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer Spiky and his new friends, the Girlies, in England! Spiky caching in Arizona… Spiky at Chincoteague Island, with his new friend Crabs…
  41. 41. Hoagies’ Gifted: Geocaching 101 • Geocaching 101: How to find your first cache • Sign up at Geocaching.com • Select your first cache • Find it & Log it • Trackables • Using your Smartphone or Buying a GPS • Geocaching 102: More fun with Geocaching! • Geocaching 103: Solving Puzzle Caches • Geocaching 104: Creating and Placing Your Own Geocaches • Geocaching 105: Using Geocaching Premium Membership Features • Geocaching Acronyms and Terms • HoagiesGifted.org/geocaching101.htm @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  42. 42. Where could it be? • Attached to something metal: guardrail, lamp post • (Most) Lamp post skirts lift up! • Under a pile of sticks or stones • In plain sight… camouflage! • In a knot hole, stump or drilled into a fat twig • Difficulty and Terrain matter (D/T on cache listing) @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  43. 43. What’s inside a cache? • The LOG! • Pen/pencil (if you’re lucky, it writes) • SWAG (take some, leave some if possible) • Trackable items (don’t take one unless you’re going to move it along) • Pathtags (personal items, if you take one, leave one) • Local information (park maps, historical info, etc.) • Clues for other caches! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  44. 44. Geocaching… fun anywhere! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  45. 45. Puzzle Caches? • Sudoku, Word Search, Simple substitution cipher • Clues in pictures, morphing photos, YouTube videos • Cut and assemble 20-sided “die” for clues • Clues hidden in a series of other caches • Links or clues hidden in source code of cache web page • Answers found in Wikipedia or Google • Site puzzles – you must visit site to find clues! • Challenge Caches – you must accomplish the challenge FIRST! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  46. 46. Premium Membership • Queries • Routes • Favorite Points • Statistics • Premium-only Geocaches @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  47. 47. The Gifted Mathies favorite… Statistics! • Finds by found date • 366 day caching challenge • Finds by cache type • Terrain / Difficulty – 81 combinations • 81 challenge • States / Countries cached • Finds per day • Lots more statistics and challenges! @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  50. 50. Other Outdoor Activities • Letterboxing Letterboxing.org • Follow clues from a starting point (no GPS or Smartphone) • Exchange stamps • Some overlap with Geocaching • High-Pointing Highpointers.org • Visit the highest point in each of the 50 states @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  51. 51. Other Outdoor Activities • Benchmarking • Visit National Geodetic Survey (NGS) locations • Geocaching.com/mark • Waymarking Waymarking.com • Visit interesting locations around the globe • Degree Confluence Project Confluence.org • Visit each of the latitude and longitude integer degree intersections in the world, and to take pictures at each location @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  52. 52. Resources • The Complete Idiot's Guide to Geocaching • The Box That Watch Found (Boxcar Children) • Get Out!: 150 Easy Ways for Kids & Grown-Ups to Get Into Nature and Build a Greener Future @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
  53. 53. Go Out & Play Geocaching and Other Great Outdoor Ideas for Gifted Kids Questions?
  54. 54. Bring to presentation… • GPS, smartphone • Pen, flashlight • Containers: Ammo can, Lock-n-lock, film canister, MKH, bison tube, nano, electrical plate, bolt, thermometer • Replacement logs, SWAG, CITO bag • Travel bugs and geocoins • Load local geo-map, puzzle caches in browser • (optional) Walking stick @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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  57. 57. Atlantic City @2013-2014 Carolyn Kottmeyer
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