Metal detecting is not a hobby limited to the experts- it can be a fun and affordable activity for the whole family.
So drag your kids away from the screens, get them out of the house and into nature, and introduce them to this fascinating outdoor hobby. We bet you they'll be hooked in no time. I mean a treasure hunt is full of surprises, and they get to dig in the dirt- every kid's dream day out!
Like any activity involving children, the secret to happy hunting is a little bit of prior planning. So we've gathered together some top tips from some experienced families as well as some recommendations for the best equipment to use with your budding detectorists.
Some of these pointers may seem a little obvious, but as a parent of 2 young explorers myself I know how easy it is to forget something!
1. Pack your bags!
Don't even think about heading out without supplies to keep the kids going all day- namely SNACKS! Kids get hungry approximately every 90 seconds, so don't set your self up for a fall by going without. You'll get much more out of your day of hunting by making sure you have fuel to keep the little ones going, and making sure you go when they are well rested will give you a longer day out too.
2. Dress for the occasion
You know what it's like when you’re outdoors and spending time on your feet for a few hours, you want to make sure you’re dressed comfortably and appropriately for your environment and climate. We recommend comfy clothes made of breathable materials, and hats and suncream if it's a warm day, and possibly welly boots too if necessary.
3. Pick a familiar and safe location
Whilst there are lots of interesting places to go hunting (Check out our guide to 10 of the Best Places to go Metal Detecting!) with kids in tow, it's probably best not to get too adventurous to start with. Kids can have plenty of fun learning to use a metal detector in their own back gardens, and progressing to enclosed places that they already know well, like perhaps a local park.
4. Teach your kids about their metal detectors at home
We recommend teaching your kids how to use their metal detector at home in your own garden before you branch out and take them to the beach, or further afield. You’ll maximise your treasure hunting time if everyone has already practised using the detector.
Using a metal detector opens up a great opportunity to teach your kids about the science behind them. They’re actually very simple machines. Learn about how metal detectors work and share this information with your kids.
5. Consider seeding the lawn
When kids are new to metal detecting, it can be a good motivation to throw a few coins into the grass to give them some things to find. This is known as a seeded hunt, where you know there are targets. This helps with learning how to understand your detector and recognise different signals for different types of things.
Even adults can enjoy seeded hunts. Tossing a few everyday coins into the yard can give everyone the thrill of the hunt. Coin collecting can be a great hobby to practice along with metal detecting.
6. Use an appropriate kids metal detector
Children who are introduced to hunting at a young age often extend the interest into adulthood. Consider this when you are looking for a perfect metal detector for your child. It makes sense to choose one that they can easily learn to use, but that they can also then use as they grow up and want to become more independent and have more features in their metal detectors. And you don't always need to spend a fortune to achieve this!
See below section for more recommendations on the best models!
Kids Metal Detectors
Metal detectors have been the tools of young adventurers for decades!
There are definitely some special considerations you’ll need to keep in mind when you are buying a metal detector that you are planning to use with a child. Most import has to be, be sure to get a good quality kids metal detector. There are many metal detectors on the market for kids that aren’t much more than a toy.
It might sound obvious, but it's so important to make sure you have kitted out your children with equipment that is easy for them to handle, and appropriate for the child's level of interest. We have found 6 key points to consider before purchasing:
- Look for a lightweight design
- High durability
- Ease of use
- Reasonable price
Suitable for the child’s age and attention span
Capable of detecting metal (often the difference between a toy model and a working metal detector!)
Other specific features to look for on a kid’s metal detector include an adjustable pole, and few, if any manual controls.
If you'd like to read more about kids metal detectors and read our reviews on the most popular models, click the link here and head to our Kids Metal Detectors page.
Top kids metal detectors recommendations
The Tacklife MMD03 is marketed as an easy-to-use junior metal detector. Its purpose is to introduce kids to treasure hunting with simple tools that are similar to that of grown-up tools, but at a greatly reduced price and with stripped features that make it simple to operate.
This isn’t a cheap plastic device that’ll break within the first week of usage. The Viewee Lightweight Metal Detector includes a waterproof search coil and LCD display. It’s a high-tech but fun piece of gear that’s more than suitable for juniors and beginners. It’s perfect for a fun day at the beach, as a family.