Gene & Julie’s six year daughter Sophia loves animals. Another child in her school expressed interest in fishing, and now, Sophia wants to go fishing as well. Gene is perplexed as he is worried that taking her fishing might distress her with baiting the hooks and pulling the fish from the water.
So, what is a good place to start when taking your child, boy or girl, fishing for the first time? Game & Fish Magazine suggests starting early. They don’t have to jump right in pulling full-sized fish out of the water, but start by inspiring their curiosity by going for a walk where people are fishing. Let the child see the fish in the water and see the people fishing along the shore or pier.
Ease them in to the process by letting your child help with the prep work. Let them pick worms for bait, or if they are too squeamish for live bait, have them bait hooks with bread or bits of hot dog. When they are ready to actually catch a fish, start small with the fish that stay close to shore like blue gills, who tend to stay underneath docks and piers.
Start with short trips. Keep the first few outings limited to an hour or so. You don’t want to exhaust your child by staying out all day. You don’t even have to catch a fish on the first trip. Make it about the experience of fishing and bonding with your child.
Fishing should be fun for your child. Let them have their own special pole. Praise every cast and every catch they make. These trips will be some of the best memories your child will have.