Shelter Survival

To be able to survive in any environment or conditions we need to know how to build a shelter.

Whilst we go on our adventures we will need to be able to sleep anywhere.

To be able to survive in any environment or conditions we need to know how to build a shelter. It may need to protect you from the weather, or maybe even predators! You may not have everything that you need to build a shelter and it may only need to last one night, so creativity will be the key. There are some basic DO’s and DON’Ts that you must remember.

  • Do you know that insects and bugs are high in protein and are great survival foods (parents note: ensure children know that this is dangerous unless with fully trained survival expert!)
  • Hypothermia can occur when you are exposed to cold air, wind or rain. Your body temperature can drop to a low level at temperatures of 50°f (10°c).
  • When 1% of the total water weight of a person’s body is lost, the person will feel thirsty.
  • The body loses heat 25 times faster in water than it does in air.
  • 3 is the universal signal number for distress. Blow a whistle 3 times to signal you need help.
  • 3 is the number of people you should tell when going on an adventure.


All around the world people are living in shelters; humanitarian, homelessness, soldiers in the field on operations and even campers!

You are going to learn a range of different shelters that you could build to ensure that you would survive in the wild. Throughout the missions with Joe, Jane Arlo and Abe, you will need to build shelters for different conditions, on different terrains! These skills will be imperative to the success of your ongoing journey.


  • You will need a sheet or a poncho and either five large sticks or bamboo canes to construct your shelter.
  • Plus, you can be really creative and find other objects and things to make your shelter like an old sheet or maybe a chair?
  • If you have a CJ’s Top Secret Ops Pack you have a poncho inside!

 Safety and Top-Secret Tips

  • Are there any trees that are likely to fall in high winds?
  • Is the ground covered in bugs and insects? You may need to ensure your shelter is off the ground to avoid any nasty bites. 
  • The open end of your shelter must be facing the opposite direction to the wind and rain (if possible).
  • If you aren’t building in your garden, ask an adult if you can dig a small storm drain around your shelter to take away any surface water .

    Mission Preparation

    • You will need to find the perfect spot for your shelter. The choice of where to build your shelter is really important.
    • First of all, you must look at the land you have in the garden. If you live in a flat or an apartment or don’t have a garden, why not go to a local park or a friend’s house? 

    Mission Ready

    • Gather all the materials that you need to build a shelter, sticks, a waterproof sheet if possible some string or rope if needed

    • Find the perfect spot to start building your shelter, don’t forget the top-secret tips

    • Standby Go! Build your shelter, the whole team needs to fit inside

    • Don’t forget the shelter needs a roof and maybe some sides to protect you from the elements!

    Misson Accomplished!

    • To make building the shelter harder you could blindfold a team member or even time how fast it takes to make a shelter and fit everyone inside.
    • If you are struggling maybe have a look at shelters online (ask an adult for help
    • Why is it important to be off the ground? Does it matter which way the wind is blowing?
    • Will you survive the night? Or maybe it is surviving the cold. Or maybe even for shade from the blistering sun?

    CJ’s Fact…

    Jane is always super positive. Did you know that the first survival skill is having a positive attitude? When have you been feeling down or sad and picked yourself up to be positive?

    Well done

    Don’t forget to update your score.