Yesterday we visited Calke Abbey on a whim, we were in the area and Louie suggested we visit one of our favourite places. Upon arrival, a kind lady gave us a 'traker pack'. These rucksacks filled with things to do are available from most National Trust properties and provide your little ones with something to keep them occupied and focused on their visit.
Louie was thrilled to be given a back pack with so many fun things inside. After our picnic lunch, we consulted the treasure map (even though we both know the whole of the property like the back of our hands) and set off on our travels.
Our first game was the busy bee board game. A game to teach children about bees, honey and pollination. We made do on the lumpy bumpy grass and Louie adored the little bees. He is just old enough to have the concentration to play these kinds of games now and the hidden learning is beneficial for Louie starting school shortly.
Then came Louie's favourite bit, the basket of soft fruit and veggies. Louie carried the basket around the kitchen garden looking for which plant would produce which fruit or vegetable. This was easy peasy for Louie, but we went around and around the garden anyway, identifying all of the different varieties grown inside the garden.
First up was the orangery, I wonder what was grown in there?
After completing all of the activities in the pack, Louie decided to play with some logs left by a path. He had a go at making a little teepee type den even though there weren't nearly enough skinny logs. He decided to make a see saw instead but had lots of fun in the process.
Lastly we paid an overdue visit to the house. Louie was given an i-spy sheet with a list of things to find, something in each room. Being the only child to visit all day (apparently), each room guide made such a fuss of him. He always learns something new talking to the Calke room guides, he is such a lucky boy.
So maybe next time you visit a National Trust property, ask for a tracker pack for your children and I am sure you will have a superb visit with a difference!