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Learning New Skills with Geocaching

written by: •edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 5/25/2009

Geocaching is a sport that is both physically and mentally stimulating. Aside from being a fun family or classroom activity, geocaching teaches many skills, too.

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    Geocaching Teaches Map Skills

    When geocachers embark on one of these high-tech treasure hunts, they are given the geographic coordinates of the treasure they seek. While geocachers do have the helpful technology of a GPS device rather than an old-fashioned paper map, they still need to learn how to follow the directions provided. Geocaching teaches the skills needed to pay attention to items on a map, how to use a compass and teaches geocachers to determine distances and directions by comparing a map to the "real world."

    Geocaching Teaches Map Reading Skills 

    Photo Credit:bjwebbiz

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    Geocaching Teaches Problem-Solving Skills

    Depending on the type of geocaching event you are attending or hosting, geocaching can teach problem- or puzzle-solving skills in a manner of different ways. For example, you can create several different caches along a planned route. Provide geocachers the coordinates to the first cache only, and then at that cache, geocachers must solve a problem in order to receive the correct coordinates for the next cache location. These can be math equations or even a physical puzzle, but no matter the type of problem, participants will be motivated to solve them so that they can reach the next, and ultimately the final, geocache location.

    Geocaching can also teach problem-solving skills due to the nature of the activity itself. If, for instance, there is a fallen tree or rain has caused running water in the path on the way to the geocache, participants will have to try and solve the unexpected problem in order to reach the cache.

    Learning how to solve problems is a helpful skill for students to learn. They can apply this skill in school, when learning a new subject or dealing with new students and teachers. Being able to solve problems will also teach them self-confidence, self-discipline and how to excel in general.

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    Geocaching Teaches Team-Building Skills

    When a group participates in a geocaching hunt, they will rapidly learn that in order to be successful, they need to form a team. With team-building skills, they can decide who is best suited to be the navigator, who ought to be in the lead, who should bring up the rear and more, with the understanding that each member of the team is equally important. Some other team-building skills that geocaching teaches include conflict resolution, the importance of working towards a goal together, what it means to be a leader, how to ask a team member for help and how to be flexible and compromise.

    Geocaching Teaches Team Building Skills Photo

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    Find out more about geocaching in the Bright Hub articles What is Geocaching? and Tips On Hosting A Geocaching Event.